6 reasons electric cars are better than gas cars in 2023
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With some U.S. states set to outright ban the sale of gas cars between 2030 and 2050 in order to reduce emissions, the transition to electric vehicles (EVs) is a certainty.
While consumers expect to own an EV in the future, many assume it will be years before they actually make the switch themselves. But, we think they might make the change sooner than they think! EVs have already emerged as a viable option — not just for avid motorists, but for commuters, families and others as well.
The combination of improvements to battery technology and government incentives mean that EVs are available at lower prices and can go farther than ever before! In fact, all of the progress EVs have made over the years may make them a better option than a gas vehicle.
Thankfully, electric vehicles are already starting to rival gas cars when it comes to range.
The Tesla Model S has a very impressive 405 mile rating from the EPA. This is not much lower than some of the most fuel-efficient gas cars.
EVs with such long ranges are almost exclusively offered as luxury vehicles. But, even cars with shorter ranges can still get you far!
The Chevy Bolt and Nissan Leaf, which are much cheaper than Tesla, now have ranges in excess of 200 miles. This may seem low at first, but it's actually an ample amount for most people. The vast majority of Americans use their cars mainly for their daily commute, which is on average just 16 miles. That means that after your ride home from work, there’ll be plenty of range left over for any additional trips.
If you do find yourself needing more range on a given day, you can easily extend it with a quick recharge. Since electric cars are becoming mainstream, EV charging stations have popped up all over and you can easily find them on apps like PlugShare. Many of these apps also include trip planner features.
In short, current EV ranges aren’t as limiting as they’re made out to be.
EVs are much cheaper than gasoline cars in terms of cost per mile. This is because EVs are able to efficiently utilize their energy input, electricity. Gas cars, by contrast, rely on inefficient gasoline combustion for power.
The cost gap between the two widened recently. As gas prices have surged - much more so than electricity costs - gas cars have become even more expensive to run. This has led to increased interest in EVs among consumers in 2023.
What's interesting is that the savings you'll see from choosing an EV can vary substantially depending on your location. This is due to the nature of electricity prices, which vary much more from state to state than relatively consistent gas prices.
|Location||Electricity rate (per kWh)||Cost for full charge*|
*Assumes 60 kWh battery.
Electric rate source: EIA
Now let’s compare this to the cost of filling up a tank of gas in the same places.
|Location||Fuel price (per gallon)||12 gallon tank (305 mile range)||16 gallon tank (406 mile range)|
Gas prices (regular) sourced from: AAA
The main takeaway from all of this is that charging an EV is cheaper than filling a gas tank
With gas prices at a national average of $3.42 per gallon, filling up your tank costs on average $41.04 for a smaller gas car, and $54.72 for a larger gas vehicle.
By contrast, the average cost to charge an EV with a 60 kWh battery is is just $9.60 - a real incentive for EV ownership.
Charging an EV with solar is even cheaper. Solar panels are able to produce electricity at a much lower price than what your utility offers. That means when you charge your car at home with solar panels, it costs even less than if you were just using energy from the grid.
While charging your EV will never be as fast as filling your tank at the gas station, there are many different options to recharge your EV which vary in speed and affordability. We’ll explore the main EV charging options below.
Level 1 charging
This is the 120 V AC power cord that comes with your car. This method is by far the slowest, providing roughly 3 miles of range per hour of charging. We don’t recommend relying on Level 1 charging.
Level 2 charging
The Level 2 chargers run off a 240 V connection - just like a washer or dryer - and require an electrician to install in your home. Depending on the model of electric vehicle, this usually costs between $550 to $2,000.
Depending on the model of car and adapter on the charger, you can expect between 14 and 35 miles of range per hour of charging.
Installing a Level 2 charger if you’ve purchased an EV is highly recommended.
Level 3 charging
Level 3 charging (often called fast charging) can provide over 100 miles of range per hour of charging. Unfortunately Level 3 chargers are only available at public charging stations.
Level 3 chargers are also substantially more expensive costing between $0.28 and $0.69 per kWh. This makes sense, otherwise it wouldn’t be economical for the stations to operate.
It also isn’t recommended to rely on fast chargers since they are known to damage EV batteries over time. Fast chargers are best for road trips, not everyday use.
A common misconception is that electric vehicles are so expensive that they aren’t viable for the American public, this couldn’t be further from the truth. The average purchase price for a new car in the United States is $47,077. The average price of an EV, on the other hand, is closer to $56,000.
While EVs on average cost more than gas cars, luxury EVs by Mercedes and Tesla have artificially inflated this number.
Even if gas cars are cheaper on average it’s important to remember that by purchasing an EV you will never have to pay for gas.
It’s also important to know that electric cars can usually entitle you to a federal tax credit of up to $7,500 – this drastically reduces the cost of ownership for EVs.
In order to claim the tax credit, you must have taxable income. New conditions imposed under the Inflation Reduction Act also require that the car have final assembly in North America. The good news is that under the new rules, cars from Tesla and GM will once again be eligible for EV tax credit from 2023 onwards.
Be sure to check EV incentives in your area since many states offer rebates and tax credits alongside the federal program.
If you’re someone who likes to get out on the track you’ll be happy to know that electric vehicles accelerate much faster than gas cars.
This is because an internal combustion engine must first build up revs before it can move the car forward, whereas an electric motor can begin moving the wheels of the car instantly after the accelerator is pressed.
To showcase this let’s take a look at the 0-60 mph times for a few different EVs as well as some different gasoline vehicles:
|Model||Engine type||0-60 mph time|
|Tesla Model 3 (Performance)||Electric||3.1 secs|
|Ford Mustang (base)||Gas||5.1 secs|
|BMW i4 eDrive40||Electric||5.5 secs|
|2021 Chevrolet Camaro RS 3LT 1LE||Gas||5.6 secs|
|Nissan Leaf SL Plus||Electric||6.5 secs|
|Honda Civic 2021||Gas||8.2 secs|
As you can see, even a Nissan Leaf SL Plus, a budget EV, has a 0-60 mph time only 0.9 seconds slower than a 2021 Camaro.
And the Tesla Model 3 performance? It leaves the gas cars in the dust.
Maintenance costs are 40% lower for EVs than gas powered vehicles. This is because electric cars have less moving parts - meaning less potential points of failure - and are exempt from routine oil changes.
In coming years, the restrictions placed on the sale of gas vehicles will mean automakers won’t bother to improve their lineup of gas cars. Why would they invest in improving something they can’t sell? As a result, gas cars in the coming decades will slowly deteriorate and people will eventually have no choice but to purchase an electric vehicle.
The answer is abundantly clear, electric cars are the way of the future. EVs are more cost effective, easier to maintain and range anxiety is becoming a thing of the past.