With California committed to phasing out the sale of new gasoline-powered cars by 2035, you may be wondering more about electric vehicles. Here’s what you need to know about electric cars so you can prepare for a future that features zero-emission vehicles.
The Cost of Owning an Electric Vehicle
The price of a gallon of gasoline has been climbing lately, so you may think owning an electric vehicle is the ideal way to save a bundle. While this is true, and we’ll talk about fuel savings below, you still have some expenses to think about.
First, you should know that the cost of purchasing an electric car is more than buying a comparable gas-powered vehicle. Granted, prices are likely to come down once electric cars become more prevalent and are required by the state. But in 2022, you can expect to pay at minimum about $28,000 for the least expensive electric car (charging stations included).
Prices will continue to change, and the good news is California offers a Clean Vehicle Rebate Program (CVRP). You can get up to $7,000 back when you buy or lease an electric vehicle. There are also federal tax credits available for further significant savings. If buying an electric car is outside your budget, you may find leasing an affordable option.
When looking at the cost of actually operating an electric vehicle, that’s where you’ll see the greatest economy. Charging an electric car with a 40-kWh battery and 150-mile range is $7 at present in California. A gas-powered vehicle would cost at least $22 to drive that distance. Be aware that you may have to pay to charge your electric car away from home with pay-as-you-go or subscription-based networks.
The US Environmental Protection Agency says electric vehicle owners can save roughly >span class="s1">$500 to $1,000 per year on fuel costs. Also, electric cars cost less to maintain without all the combustion engine parts, so you may trim more from your budget there.
The Pros and Cons of Electric Cars
Aside from the operational cost savings, what are some other pros of owning an electric car? Here are a few important considerations:
- Electric vehicles are better for the planet because they don’t rely on fossil fuels, nor do they pollute like gas-powered cars.
- Electric cars are quieter, helping to curb noise pollution.
- Owners enjoy more conveniences with electric cars, from not having to wait in line at the gas station to being able to use special lanes on the highway.
There are far fewer options on the market right now. You may have to settle for a model that isn’t aesthetically quite what you want to get the energy efficiency of an electric vehicle.
Waitlists can be long for many electric car models. With global shipping and resource delays, there may be further slowdowns, particularly due to waiting for computer chips and lithium for batteries.
Charging logistics can be a major issue for some folks too. In rural areas, it can be challenging to find charging stations. You have to be sure you don’t travel further than the range on your vehicle. If you get stuck in a traffic jam, it’s possible you could run out of juice before you’re able to get moving again.
When you need to stop for a charge, you have to plan on it taking a while, unlike filling up with gas at the pump. Charging times can range from a few hours to the better part of a day. Most electric car owners charge theirs at home while they sleep.
Finally, electric cars can sometimes cost more to insure than their gas-powered counterparts. This is because their components are more expensive to repair or replace after an accident. Just like with conventional vehicles, the higher the value of the car, the more you’ll pay for insurance. Most electric car owners find their overall savings far offset any small increases in auto insurance, so they’re happy to pay their premiums, knowing they’ll make it up elsewhere. Call us and let us help you find the best insurance coverage options.