EVs are the future, and they’re becoming more widely available at lower prices. Find out if now is the time for you to buy an electric car.
What to consider before buying an EV
Making the transition from a gas-powered vehicle to an electric car is a major decision. Before you decide, learn everything that comes with having an EV.
While Tesla has been a leader in the EV industry, other automakers are beginning to electrify their cars, too. A lot of research and development is happening in many car manufacturers.
So, should you buy an electric car now or wait? Learn the pros and cons of getting an EV now and the different aspects of ownership.
Why do you want an electric car?
Knowing why you want an EV will help you find the perfect car. Are you looking for performance, style, range, or space? Think about what’s important to you and what will fit your needs.
Most of the available electric cars have excellent performance. They accelerate quickly and handle well. Some of them compete with supercars, such as the Tesla Model S Plaid. It can go from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 1.99 seconds.
A high-performance EV comes with a higher price tag. Tesla Model S Plaid starts at $119,990.
If you don’t care about a 0 to 60 time of fewer than 2 seconds and plan to use it as a normal daily driver, Nissan LEAF starts at $31,670.
Aside from performance, do you love a nice interior? Polestar 2 has a minimal and classy interior that’s fully vegan and features reconstructed wood.
Before you choose one, figure out what you want in an electric car.
Range and charging options
The range is what holds a lot of people back from switching to an electric car. Most EVs have a range of 250 miles or more on a single charge. When was the last time you drove more than 250 miles in a day?
If you’re going on a road trip, you can also use fast charging. It can recharge your car up to 80% in less than half an hour.
Some EVs have less range while others have more. If you’re looking for one with a lot of range, the sticker price may also be higher.
Aside from the range, how do you plan to charge your car? At-home charging is one of the best ways because you can allow it to charge without going anywhere. Typically, you’ll charge it at night, and when you wake up, it’ll be fully charged.
If you’re charging your car at home, you’ll need to make sure you have the right setup. While you can charge it using a 110-volt outlet, most EV owners hire an electrician to install a 240-volt outlet.
A 240-volt wall outlet is considered level 2 charging, and it charges your car faster than a 110-volt outlet, which is level 1 charging.
If you don’t want to charge your car at home, check to see if there are charging stations nearby. Based on where you live, the number of public charging stations will vary.
Plus, the charging infrastructure in America is growing quickly. With time, you’ll have more access to charging stations.
If you get an electric car, you’ll need it to be within range of a Wi-Fi network. That’s because the automaker will send over-the-air (OTA) updates, which are enhancements to the software or firmware.
OTA updates are great because recalls, safety updates, and features can be taken care of easily. You don’t have to visit the automaker. Instead, you’ll get a notification to update your car.
Are the savings worth it?
Overall, EVs cost less than gas-powered cars. With an electric car, you’ll save money when it comes to fuel, maintenance, repairs, and depreciation since newer electric cars are holding their value.
When it comes to charging costs, the savings are substantial. Instead of gas, you’re paying for electricity. Each city and state has different rates. However, you pay a certain amount per kilowatt-hour (kWh).
According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the average cost per kilowatt-hour in the U.S. is 12.69 cents.
To find out how much a single charge would cost, look at the battery capacity of a car. For example, the 2021 Hyundai Kona EV has a battery capacity of 64 kWh.
If you multiply the battery capacity by the cost per kilowatt-hour, you’ll have the amount that it costs to charge an EV.
For the 2021 Hyundai Kona EV, we’ll use the U.S. average. 64 times 0.1269 equals 8.1216. Therefore, it would cost $8.12 to fully charge the Kona EV.
If you’re considering an EV for the savings, it’s definitely worth it.
Incentives for electric cars
There are state and federal incentives available for purchasing an electric car. Note that it’s for buying an electric car, not leasing.
Currently, there’s a federal tax credit of $7,500. If you end up owing money to the IRS, you would receive a credit of up to $7,500. It depends on how much you owe because if you owe less, you’re not getting a refund for the difference.
Aside from the federal incentive, check with your state to see if you qualify for anything. It can help lower the cost of purchasing a new car.
Frequently asked questions
Is it better to buy or lease an electric car?
Right now, leasing an electric car may be better than buying it because they’re relatively new. As technology improves and updates are made, you don’t have to worry about spending a ton of money on something that becomes outdated quickly.
Should I buy a new or used electric car?
Since electric cars don’t have as many moving parts as a gas-powered car, buying a used one may save you a good amount of money. The key is to keep an eye on the mileage, brakes, suspension, and tread on the tires.
Is insurance expensive for an electric car?
On average, insurance for an electric car is more expensive than a gas-powered car because they’re more expensive and have higher repair costs.
It’s a great time to buy an electric car. More manufacturers are releasing them, and they’re constantly improving. Figure out if it makes sense for you to get one, and if it does, jump it because it’ll be worth it.
Related: Why did Tesla remove radar sensors?
Featured image courtesy of Canva.
About David Em
David Em is the founder of EV Unleashed, the leading resource for electric vehicle news, reviews, and buyer’s guides. He launched EV Unleashed to provide unbiased and in-depth news and reviews about electric vehicles and the EV industry.