With the arrival of high-profile electric vehicles in Ontario (the Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf spring to mind) consumers across the province have begun considering the possibility of leaving gas in the past. Weighing the advantages and disadvantages, however, can be a dizzying prospect – here are a few tips to help you see your way through the exhaust.
When It Comes To Noise, Electric Can’t Be Beat
The disorientation of driving an electric car for the first time can be unnerving. The electric engine means that the car runs in virtual silence compared to its gas-fueled counterpart, and if the background noise of the driving experience has always annoyed you, the electric car is what you’ve been waiting for.
The Cost of Gas vs. The Cost of Electricity
Of course, a major factor is weighing which kind of fuel source (gas or electricity) is cheaper in your area. That being said, if you live in a time where electricity is far more expensive than gas, you live in very interesting times indeed – for those of us in the early twenty-first century, the advantage clearly lies with the electric car.
Help Save the Planet
A major attraction for many consumers to electric cars is that it offers the opportunity to make far less of a negative impact on the environment than a gas car would. If you feel strongly that the responsibility to care for the Earth lies more with the people who drive cars than it does with the people who manufacture them, an electric car will probably be very appealing to you.
Less Death and Fewer Taxes
In addition to the health benefits potentially created through a reduction in the output of harmful gasoline exhaust, the government has also endorsed the overall benefit that electric cars have to offer on a grander social scale. As a result, you can expect to receive considerable incentives from the province to purchase electric vehicles, presently in the form of sizable rebates.
Unfortunately, these rebates can often only somewhat offset the greater overall cost of going electric, as comparable gas vehicles are typically much less expensive than their electric counterparts. For the time being, these incentives act as more of an equalizer than a real advantage.
Range Anxiety – How Far Are You Travelling
If electric cars have one major drawback, however, it is their generally limited range. For drivers, this drawback goes hand-in-hand with a fear of running out of power without the usual recourse of walking to a gas station. For this reason, electric vehicles are probably better for city drivers who are only making short, predictable trips on a daily basis, and consistently returning to their homes to plug the car back in. For drivers who live in more rural areas, and drive long distances frequently, the electric car may not be the wisest choice.
Also, given the generally smaller size of electric cars released thus far, there may not be much a farmer could get done with one.