Electric Car Performance

Electric Car Performance

Save money and the environment with electric cars.


Growing numbers of electric cars bring a number of advantages to the average car owner. I will focus on two simple metrics, gas prices and emissions, to make this comparison easily digestible. As with all new technologies, there are some adjustments that end up having to be made by consumers. With regards to electric cars, owners have to adjust to a new way of using and interacting with their vehicles.


One place where consumers will see a savings is at the gas station. All car owners must stop here in order to refuel their tanks. How much this costs is an interplay between how many miles one drives and how much a gallon of gas costs after all taxes and fees are factored in. The average American drives between 12,000 – 15,000 miles a year according to autonews. If we use 22 MPG and the price of regular gas at $3.78 you could estimate that it would cost $1,900 for a year of refueling or a cost of $0.16 cents per mile. Next we compare that with an average electric car that travels 3 miles per kWh, using the same 12,000 miles driven, and the price of electricity in California at $0.18 per kWh. From these numbers it would a cost $600 for the year or a cost of $0.05 cents per mile. While these prices do not take into account how much it costs to add a charging station to one’s home, it does show a clear savings on a per mile basis.  


The other area where you save with an electric car is at the tailpipe. Electric cars reduce the pollution that our driving creates. Just as with gas prices being lower, a USC report found that emissions are nearly cut in half, stating,“The national average is 4,815 pounds of O2-equivalent emissions for a typical EV per year as compared to the average gasoline-powered car which produces 11,435 pounds of CO2-equivalent emissions annually”. As with savings at the pump, savings at the tailpipe are nearly double.


In places where electric car adoption is favored, subsidies are used to lower the price for the consumer, in California you can receive up to $10,000, this helps to make electric cars more affordable for more people. For example, The Chevy Bolt, an electric car that combines good range and usability, is a $38,000 dollar car and is $10,000 dollars more than a comparable mid size car, but rebates make this car competitive in the market segment. California’s use of rebates and subsidies to push electric car adoption has been moderately successful, as people there purchase more electric cars than other states, 4.8% of cars sold are electric. With more competitively priced electric cars, consumers will save even more money and emit fewer and fewer emissions into the environment!

Written by Jeremy Brown