Nov 02 2022

Four misunderstanding about electric cars

Moly Johanson


The era of petrol and diesel cars seems to be coming to an end, with the transition to a new era, the era of electric cars. But some mythical misunderstandings about electric cars still exist. Many automakers claim to have begun removing the internal combustion engine. Some say they have set a goal of switching to all-electric vehicles within the next decade. Meanwhile, some are committed to providing more electric vehicles (EVs), hybrids and trucks. Governments around the world have also promised to support the transition to electric cars with incentives. All shows that the era of petrol and diesel cars is about to end to transition to a new dynasty, the era of electric cars. However, some mythical misunderstandings about electric cars still exist.


1- Electric cars are the toys of the rich:


Electric cars are not necessarily more expensive than their petrol equivalents. You don't have to have  $100,000 for a Tesla Model S to enjoy the benefits of an electric car.


For example, the gas-electric Kia Niro crossover starts at $24,690, the plug-in hybrid starts at $29,590, and the Niro EV starts at $39,090. Electric vehicle prices are higher mainly because in a modern gasoline car the fuel is contained in a cheap molded plastic tank. But in an electric vehicle, fuel is stored in a battery pack that costs thousands of dollars. Electric cars tend to be a bit more expensive than normal cars.


However, countries are having policies to support electric vehicles, thus bringing the cost of electric vehicle ownership down. In the US, for example, the Niro EV will sell for $31,590, well below the average for a new car.


According to Kelley Blue Book, at the beginning of last year, the average transaction price for a new car was nearly $40,000. The starting prices of some great EVs - including the Chevy Bolt, Nissan Leaf and Volkswagen ID.4 - are well below that average. In 2022, Ford F-150 Lightning starts at $ 39,974 before tax incentives, cheaper than many models of the gasoline version. And as electric vehicles become more common, batteries will continue to get better and cheaper – which means better and cheaper electric cars, which means they become more popular.  Plus, the fuel-to-maintenance costs for electricity are lower, making them more affordable over time.


2- Electric cars are about to dominate gasoline cars


Many observers believe we've passed the "G-spot," and electric vehicle (EV) sales will quickly dominate gasoline and diesel vehicles. It should be optimistic about the prospect of electric cars increasing market share, but the transition to all-electric vehicles will take a long time.

In fact, electric cars are still not really popular. As of 2020, electric vehicles account for only 1.8% of the total new vehicle market in the US. The market share is expected to grow to 2.5% this year, but that still has a very long way to go before electric vehicles become ubiquitous. On average, buyers often use the car about 12 years before thinking about buying a new car. After that they will consider buying an electric car.


3- Electric cars are just as bad for the environment as petrol cars


Skeptics of electric vehicles argue that they are just as harmful to the environment as petrol cars. Not only does carbon dioxide emissions come out of the exhaust, electric cars will emit CO2 during both production and battery charging. Producing any product is generally harmful to the Earth, and the environmental costs of building something as large and complex as a car are enormous. Raw materials, manufacturing, shipping, selling, maintenance - it's a real "festival of destruction" for the environment. Thus, for an EV to be on the market, it will have to go through all of those processes. 


However, where does the power to charge the car come from?


But over time, an electric car is a better choice for the environment when compared to a gas-powered car. Electric vehicles produce some brake dust, but they don't directly release carbon dioxide or any other polluted stuff in the running. While a gasoline-powered car continues to pollute for the rest of its life, the environmental cost of an electric vehicle is only high within the first few years of ownership. The power grid can again switch to more and more renewable energy, which makes electric cars look better; Owners can even charge them at home using solar panels.


Meanwhile, every kilometer traveled in a gasoline car means more fuel is burned and more harmful chemicals and carbon dioxide are pumped into the air. Furthermore, consider the environmental impact of the oil industry. Extracting oil is an energy-intensive process that comes with a decades-long list of costs to people and the environment.


4- Electric cars have a high risk of fire


In August-2022, Chevrolet announced a recall of more than 140,000 Bolt electric vehicles - models from 2017 through 2022 - to address a potential fire risk caused by a manufacturing defect in LG batteries. A garage in Germany has banned all electric and hybrid cars for fear of fires. A series of electric Tesla and Hyundai fires has also raised concerns about electric vehicles.


Tram fires also make firefighting more difficult. They usually burn longer and are more dangerous than other fires. But there isn't any evidence that electric cars catch fire more easily than combustion cars if we compare fires based on kilometers traveled.


Electric vehicle fires can be caused by a manufacturing defect, a software glitch, or a serious problem that damages the battery. Fires often occur when vehicles are charging or parked. It's rare, but the thought of a car catching fire in your garage while you're sleeping is horrifying. It should be recognized, however, that the cars that burn in accidents are equally horrifying, and that dozens of recalls have resulted from vehicles that normally catch fire while parked.


A study in 2020 by the National Fire Protection Association estimated that there were 212,500 vehicle fires in the US in 2018. Some causes, like smoking in the passenger compartment or friction between worn components. or improper lubrication, will still be possible with electric vehicles. But causes, such as leaking fuel or oil into the hot exhaust, are only found in cars with internal combustion engines.

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