A recent study revealed that consumers are becoming more aware of the cost-efficient potential of the electric car, on a long-term basis. It is clear now more than ever that electric vehicles are rising in popularity and additionally, in awareness; although there is still a percentage of the target audience who resist purchasing green vehicles as a result of their higher price tags, electric cars are slowly earning their status as cost effective in the long term.
Due to the low refuelling costs and exemption from congestion charges, the electric vehicles have become acknowledged as the lowest costs on a lifespan basis, compared to diesel and hybrid-powered cars. The costumers therefore begin to rely on the economical characteristic on the electric car, assuming that the vehicle will compensate for its extra cost in the long term through reduced fuel, time, taxes and insurance.
With the launch of the Mitsuishi i-MiEV and the Peugeot iOn, a new generation of fully electric-powered cars is soon to arrive. To find out how much it would cost to live with an electric car, we take a look at the cost of the car per kilowatt-hour, the prices and packages, running expenses and the future car sales.
The first interesting aspect is the price of gas. As the car gets 30 mpg, the gas will cost £1.84. The conclusion is that the cost to run a car on gas is £6.1 per mile. As regards to gasoline, a hybrid car uses the energy from gasoline at an efficiency of 25%, as the most of the energy is lost in auto dynamics, engine heating and resistance. By using its full 100% potential, the same car could run up to 140 miles on a gallon, rather than only 30 miles.
The battery of an electric car will charge and discharge kilowatt-hours, by using a power grid functioning at a capacity of 90%. The performance of the rear engine depends on the size and it translates the electricity in energy, also using a 90% capacity. Both the Peugeot iOn and the Mitsubishi i-MiEV operate at over 80% mechanical energy, as the car enables the conversion of the amount of one gallon of gasoline in kilowatt-hours. Running an average of 100 mile, at an 80km/h speed, the performance of the electric car is of three times more effective than that of the gasoline-powered car.
There are 32.95 kilowatt-hours of energy in a gallon of gas and the cost of the kilowatts is usually £6.1, which makes a trip of 100 miles worth £2. Compared to gasoline-powered cars, electric cars use much less energy to drive for the same distance and additionally they cost much less to refuel. This is why the benefits of the green vehicles in general and electric cars in particular are beginning to be more and more understood.
The running costs of an electric car are considerably cheaper than of diesel or petrol, at a value of 2 pence per mile in electricity. The costs are predicted to keep their original price, as the electric vehicles offer a viable proposition in the green car industry.The electric vehicle industry is dominated by the Mitsubishi i-MiEV, the Nissan Leaf and the Vauxhall Ampera. The Mitsubishi i-MiEV influenced the design and technology implemented on the Peugeot iOn and the Citroen C-Zero, both of which offer the same business packages. Both manufacturers offer a lease in a value of £498 of 48 payments each month, adding up to £23,904. The lease is a more convenient replacement for the prices on road, and it also includes warranty, repairing and upkeep. The downside is that at the end of the four-year lease agreement, the car is owned by the lessor instead of the person who used it frequently.
The Mitsubishi i-MiEV however does offer on the road prices of £24,045. The package is additional to the Plug-In Car Grant, which is a fund provided by the government to support buyers of vehicles which produce low emissions. The grant has a value of £5,000. The price of the Mitsubishi is £23,990. Its immediate competitor is the Nissan Leaf, which is considered to be the market leader at both performance and purchasing packages, with the on the road prices at £23,990. The manufacturers provide a personal contract buying structure, which consists of a deposit of £3,850 and 36 payments monthly of £397. The costs and the final payment of £9,758 add up to a total of £28,204, which is an extra of £4,214 over the on the road prices. As the prices and business packages between the two electric vehicles are similar, the final verdict will be given by the i-MiEV and Leaf’s practicalities. The Nissan is substantially more spacious, while the Mitsubishi is only 142.5 inches long. The Nissan Leaf has therefore more functions than the i-MiEV.
The electric cars are expensive to buy but they compensate by reduced running costs. Considering that the on the road prices of gasoline-powered vehicles incline over time, the advantage of the electric powered vehicles is that on the road prices are likely to just marginally rise. The Nissan Leaf for example, has predicted 46% original on the road prices on a three-year basis, as opposed to the 32% of the Vauxhall Astra 2.0 CDTi. If a pure electric car is worth approximately 2 pence per mile and a petrol-powered vehicle uses 17 pence per mile, 12,000 miles per year will be worth £250 in an electric car, as opposed to the £2,000, which only covers the driving expenses of the petrol-powered vehicle. The servicing costs are also very low, as the electric engine only has four working parts, unlike the 300 working parts of the internal combustion engine. Other benefits include exemptions from the congestion charge and parking space charges in the UK’s major cities. If a company uses electric vehicles as company cars, the benefits for the business will be in value of a few thousand pounds per year, due to multiple tax savings.
The electric car is currently mostly popular with companies who want to build up an eco-friendly image. The first Peugeot iOn was delivered to the UK for the EDF Energy Company. The business supports the development of technologies to assist the environmental movement and their green profile is highly important. Most companies are attracted by the benefits of the leasing structure, in which Peugeot and Citroen are the market leaders.
Since the beginning of 2011, the electric cars have started achieving their potential as consumers began to understand their features and benefits in the long term. The access to the electric cars has increased public awareness with regards to their low running costs and their environmental engagement. The vehicles are highly appealing in the business sector, due their economical and eco-friendly characteristics.
Ben J White is an online journalist from Birmingham covering a range of green, environmental issues and the automotive industry. He has been writing articles and blog posts for online publications and specialises in electric cars, low emission cars, 7 seater cars and city cars.