By Zack Hurst
FACT: There are affordable EV options for most people
MYTH: EVs are too expensive, and only for the rich
Until recent years, options were limited for buyers outside of CARB states to get a reasonably affordable EV. Luckily, this has changed! In 2020, many new EV models are offered for well less than $40,000, and great deals on used vehicles can also be found for less than $20,000... often less than $10,000. Do expensive EVs exist? Yes, of course! You can find expensive cars regardless of what happens to be under the hood. But there are many options for prospective EV buyers on a budget. So don't give up, there's an EV out there right now waiting for you!
FACT: EV batteries often last a decade or more
MYTH: EVs batteries die in less than 5 years
All batteries will degrade over time, and the Lithium-Ion batteries that are used in electric vehicles are certainly no exception to this rule. However EV batteries, unlike those in our phones, will often last 10yrs or more thanks to advanced battery management systems, active thermal management, and sophisticated computer software. EVs use these systems to protect the batteries from excessive heat or cold, and maintain an optimum state of charge. To this second point, because Li-ion batteries do not respond well to being charged or discharged to their extremes, EV manufacturers often reserve a percentage of the battery's storage capacity to act as a buffer. If this doesn't sway you to believe that EV batteries will really last as long as you would need them to, you might find comfort learning that most EVs come with a warranty on the batteries of up to 8yrs or 100,000 miles, with a few manufacturers offering longer warranties. Unless you are buying an older electric vehicle with the original battery still in place, you will most likely never give a second thought to the state of health of your EV battery and will enjoy many years of happy electric motoring.
FACT: EVs are some of the quickest cars on the road
MYTH: EVs are glorified golf carts
If you've ever ridden on a roller coaster or flown in a passenger jet during takeoff, you might have a small glimpse into what it's like to drive ,or be a passenger, in a Tesla Model S Performance w/Ludicrous mode. At it's best, the Model S will launch from 0-60mph in a blistering 2.28sec. A "glorified golf cart" this is not, and the Tesla isn't alone. Many EVs have the ability to push their passengers into the backs of their seats with a punch of the accelerator. An unlikely example, the Chevy Spark EV, in its first production year (2014), had more torque than a Ferrari 458 of the same year. The biggest names in performance automobiles have noticed. Porsche, McLaren, Ferrari, and others have electrified their high end cars to unleash peak performance on the road, and track. Of the top five quickest accelerating production vehicles, two are full electric and one is a hybrid (the fastest). Long gone are the days of EVs being made with the only purpose of fuel efficiency or commuting to and from the office or grocery store.
FACT: EVs are safe
MYTH: All EVs catch fire in a crash
If it's in the headline news, it must be true right? EVs catch on fire, sometimes spontaneously, or often after a wreck. They burn down the garage, and their batteries are extremely unstable. Well, not exactly. Have these things happened? Yes. Is this common? No, not even close. In fact, fires occur less often in EVs than their gasoline and diesel fueled counterparts. When a "normal" car catches on fire however, it doesn't make headlines. When all you hear is the negative about EVs, you're only receiving a very small piece of the total amount of information. The truth of the matter is that EVs are some of the safest cars on the road. They are less likely to catch fire and additionally are the safest vehicles on the road in crashes too. Just to name a few, the Audi e-tron, Hyundai Kona EV, and Tesla Model 3 all received the IIHS Top Safety Pick+ rating for 2020. The fact of the matter is, if you want to be in a safe vehicle, you're definitely better off in an EV.
FACT: EVs ARE FUN!
MYTH: EVs are boring
I remember the first time I ever drove an EV, it was a Tesla Model S. I visited the dealership out of curiosity at these "new things." My life was forever changed. The ride was smooth and quiet. It wasn't the fastest version offered, but the acceleration was punchy when I wanted it and the car cornered like it was on rails due to the low center of gravity. About a year later, I test drove the Tesla Model 3 Performance... and my life wasn't changed, it was ruined. I never wanted to drive anything else. It was that experience that ultimately led to the purchase of my first electric car, a Chevy Spark EV. It's quick off the line, spunky, and responsive to input. Easily the most fun car I've ever owned. My experience is not unique. Talk to any EV owner and you are likely to hear a similar story about how they came to experience driving, and how their lives were changed. In addition to being fun to drive, EVs are also fun to own! With no engine and just a small amount of mechanical parts, the worries of maintenance and repair are far from thought, and that means that you can devote more of your mind to thinking about how much you love your car.