Battery cars cheaper to run?

2012-04-17 11:57

DETROIT, USA - Electric vehicles in the US save their owners more on fuel and are less polluting than most petrol-powered vehicles, even in places where electricity is made by burning coal, the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) said in a report.

Don Anair, a UCS senior engineer, said: "Drivers should feel confident that owning an electric vehicle is a good choice for reducing global warming pollution, cutting fuel costs, and slashing oil consumption."

The UCS said the study is the first to analyse emissions from vehicles charged on a power grid of electricity made from fuels such as coal and natural gas.

According to the report, owners of electric vehicles can save $750 to $1200 (R5968 - R9550) a year based on 17 702km of driving, compared to drivers of a petrol-powered vehicle that gets 11.4km/l at $3.50 per gallon (R7.3 per litre).

For every 50c rise in the price of fuel, an EV driver can save an extra R1591 annually, the report said.

Check out the full report here!


  • Ford.Kop1 - 2012-04-17 13:25

    Last year i was stil a non-believer. But i changed all that after i saw the Fisker Karma. You can charge it up at home and when you start running out of juice your on board power station/ petrol engine which sole purpose is to charge the electric which turn the wheels. All manufactures should produce cars similar to the Fisker. Make it more affordable.

  • James - 2012-04-17 13:46

    Chev Volt will take 26yrs to payback. Bigger issue Hybrids and electrics have about 26% repeat Buyers. And then you replace the Batteries for R32,000

      Ebon - 2012-04-17 16:44

      If you are buying a hybrid or electric vehicle to save money, then you are buying it for the wrong reason. The most compelling reason to buy one is to reduce the amount of fossil fuels you are consuming. As for the real costs, I don't think that the gap in total cost of ownership between a regular car and an electric/hybrid is that big these days. In short, if you are genuinely concerned about reducing your carbon footprint and using up all the world's resources then go ahead and buy an electric/hybrid. It will probably cost you personally a bit of money, but considering the cost of car ownership it will only add a few percent. If you don't believe in climate change, or simply don't care about the future of the planet (or the implications for its inhabitants) then stick to a regular car. You'll have more money at the end of the day. PS: The cost of replacing a battery in a Prius is currently about $2000 (US). It might be more here, but honestly, it's a part that should last for about 250 000 kms or 10 years. The costs of replacing turbochargers (for example) in a modern car is significantly more than replacing batteries in a hybrid/electric.

      Phoenix - 2012-04-18 11:13

      Prius is not a car. Electric cars do NOT currently reduce carbon footprints due to the way electricity is generated and the inefficiencies in the entire process: from generation to storage in battery to car. The only people currently using these vehicles are only doing it for show and to be able to piously look down at lesser fossile fuel users. Slight ironic then.

      Phoenix - 2012-04-18 11:14

      ... and it will be years before renewable energy is freely available enough and cost-effective enough.

      Ebon - 2012-04-18 14:27

      So let me get this straight Phoenix: The evidence presented by the UCS as reported in the above article is, in your humble opinion incorrect? Because their conclusion is pretty well stated: "Electric vehicles in the US ... are less polluting than most petrol-powered vehicles, even in places where electricity is made by burning coal" "owning an electric vehicle is a good choice for reducing global warming pollution" They even go so far as to explain that they take into account how much pollution is generated by the plants. Yet you reckon you know better and are happy to state your opinion as fact? Without any kind of supporting argument to even justify that opinion? As an engineer myself I feel pretty confident in the UCS findings which are more or less what I would expect them to be based on the basic principle of mechanical and electrical engineering (which definitely takes into account, among many other things, the few factors you feel are pertinent). (Then again, maybe I should have realised to ignore your comment after reading your opening sentence)

      Phoenix - 2012-04-18 15:58

      The world is bigger than the US.

      Ebon - 2012-04-18 17:25

      You know what's funny: I was pretty much checking this thread periodically since yesterday, like every hour or so. Not much activity, not much voting. My initial comment had climbed to 6 votes up, 1 down. Incidentally Phoenix's comments had no votes other than mine (I voted the first one down, the second one up). Suddenly I check now after an hour of inactivity, and I see each of Phoenix's comments has 12-15 upvotes and each of mine has 12 downvote. Also Phoenix has contributed a new comment. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to understand that every single one of the votes uprating Phoenix and downvoting me came from Phoenix. Phoenix: That is just pathetic. Sorry, but it just serves as further evidence of why your opinion should be disregarded in its entirety. BTW, you still fail to present anything remotely resembling a rational argument for your case.

      Phoenix - 2012-04-18 19:30

      or.... i mailed the link to a couple of friends? I have those. I don't care if you disregard my opinion. See the bigger picture and what is happening in the rest of ther world - and what currently happening in China. I am not here to educate you.

      Phoenix - 2012-04-18 19:30

      Sorry I insulted your car.

      Ebon - 2012-04-19 10:23

      @Phoenix: LOL, I don't know what would be sadder: That you would make up a lie on a forum of strangers about a bunch of friends you don't actually have or that you do actually have a bunch of friends who are: a) as ignorant as you and b) would go to the effort of immediately responding to an email from you to go and vote on some almost meaningless article. Either way, the fact that you would do either is not a great indictment on yourself. And no, I am not looking for an education. I am trying to get to a point where I understand what you are talking about. You chose to post an opinion on a public forum. An opinion which I feel is unsubstantiated. So I called you on it. Strangely, you still fail to say anything relevant: "Look at what is happening in China...". That's not an argument mate. Lots of stuff is happening in China. Which parts are you referring to? How do they prove your point? I don't think they do. I don't think you know what you are talking about. And the fact that I called you on it bruised your ego. Which is why you responded as you did. PS, I don't own or drive a Prius. In fact I don't drive an electric or hybrid vehicle at all (I think I would if there was a bit more choice). So I don't really have any emotional involvement in this discussion.

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