2008… the year of the Electric Car?

Let’s face it, cars aren’t going to go away. As a means of private transport they are extremely popular for their convenience, comfort and the personal freedom they offer their owners, so anyone who suggests that we should all give them up and use public transport instead is mad. However, there is no denying that they do pose a problem. And that is that, collectively, cars account for 12% of all CO2 emissions in the EU and thus they are one of our biggest sources of carbon pollution.

So how can we keep our beloved cars, without contributing to global warming? For me the answer lies with Electric Vehicles that are recharged from a renewable energy source. You may think that this vision is still 10 years or so away, but you’d be wrong.

Electric cars are here now, albeit for fringe users, but within the few years the mix of economics and technology might just be right for the average motorist to join in too. In this post I’ll be examining what is current available, plus what’ll be around in the near future and how the cost of running an electric vehicle compares to it’s gas guzzling cousins.

Cost Comparison

Car Capacity Range EPM eMPG Cost per Mile
Reva G Wiz 9.6 KWh 48 miles 0.2 KWh/m 218.5 0.99p
Mitsubishi i-ev 20 KWh 100 miles 0.2 KWh/m 218.5 0.99p
Phoenix Motors SUV 35 KWh 100 miles 0.35 KWh/m 124.9 1.73p
Tesla Roadster 53 KWh 250 miles 0.212 KWh/m 206 1.05p
Lightning Car ? ? ? ? ?

  • A UK imperial gallon of petrol contains about 43.7 kWh of energy
  • A litre of petrol contains 9.6 KWh of energy @ 100% conversion efficiency
  • Equivalent Miles per Gallon (eMPG) = 43.7 (kwh/gallon) / energy per mile
  • Energy per mile (EPM) in kwh/mile = Capacity (kwh) / Range (miles)
  • Cost per mile = EPM * price per kilowatt hour
  • Price per Kilowatt hour = 4.95 pence (off peak, green energy)

Reva G Wiz
Reva G Wiz
Mitsubishi i-EV
Mitsubishi i-EV
Phoenix Motors SUV
Phoenix Motors SUV
Tesla Roadster
Tesla Roadster
Lightning Sports Car
Lightning Sports Car

5 thoughts on “2008… the year of the Electric Car?”

  1. Electric cars are a joke.

    They promise so much and deliver little. Real users don’t get the promised range and the high cost of batteries makes them expensive to run.

    G-Wiz Batteries last two years and cost £1600.

    One user reported an 18 mile range when the heater was used.

  2. I can’t really see how they can be practical if they take so long to charge. It takes a couple of minutes to put 15 gallons of petrol into my car, which will then take me around 450 miles. This is around 650kWh of energy. How would you charge a battery up in those conditions? Could you do it safely?

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