EV101 – Do You Prefer Straight or Mixed?

Hi folks, I’m Jon Mullen the Energy Evangelist. It’s a new month and we’re looking at savings on Electric Vehicles. So where do we start? We need to talk about making the right choice – should it be a mixture of petrol and electric (which is known as a hybrid car), or a car which only uses electric (which we call an EV or electric vehicle)?

There is a lot of confusion how hybrid cars are being sold, and very few car salesmen will tell you the truth. There are usually two alternative stories.

The first hybrid story is shown on a recent car advert for a hybrid car which was described as “The hybrid that charges itself”. This statement is completely true, the car uses petrol to drive the engine which charges a battery. Just like every other petrol car! Then the car can use the battery energy to occasionally drive the car forward. The problem with this is every time you convert from one energy source to another, such as petrol to electric, you will lose at least 30% of the potential power. So you end up using very near the same amount of fuel as a straight petrol car.

The other story is that the battery is used to increase the acceleration of the petrol engine. Again you end up using nearly the same amount of fuel as a straight electric car.

So let me tell you a real life story about using an electric car. My wife was travelling approximately 1000 miles each month for work (50 miles round trip 4 days a week). We had been paying around £240 on petrol each month, so that added up to £2640 on fuel each year. We decided to lease a Renault Zoe for 2 years which is 100% electric, and we were paying £220 a month for the car, so a really good price. How much did it cost us in electric charges each month to travel the same distance? It was just over £20 per month. All we had to do each night was plug the car into the wall socket on the side of our garage. It wasn’t hard. I won’t be buying a petrol or diesel car ever again. It doesn’t make sense.

I’m Jon Mullen the Energy Evangelist. Come and find out how to save more energy and cash at EnergyEvangelist.co.uk

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