August 1st 2014 we became owners of an electric car. We chose the Nissan Leaf, which is the most sold electric car both worldwide and in Norway where we live. One of the reasons we chose the Leaf was that we think it is a huge benefit to have a car which is well known by the service stations.
I will explain our reasons for going electric shortly. There are several benefits and some drawbacks by electric car compared with a traditional gasoline or diesel car. To take the drawbacks first, it is four of them:
1. Limited range. According to the European Driving Cycle test our car have a range of 195 km, but in reality with mixed driving we can expect around 120 km.
2. Long charging time. Normal charging from ordinary home outlet take about 10 hours. Rapid charging up to 80% level can be done on about 30 minutes. Even the rapid charging take very long time compared to a gasoline filling.
3. Too few charging stations. The stations which offer quick charging are especially scarce.
4. The batteries are expensive and we do not know their lifetime. The guarantee says 5 year, but we hope that the car will last longer than that. We hope and expect that battery prices will fall in the long run as the technology rapes and we also hope and expect that the battery lifetime will be much more than 5 years. We may be wrong on one of these expectation, but hopefully not on both.
The benefits falls in two categories; one category is the benefits for the owner and the other category is the benefits for the society.
The benefits for the owner are:
1. Low cost for fuel. Where we live is the mileage cost is approximately 10 % of the mileage costs for a gasoline car.
2. Low service cost. No oil shift and few service points in the engine make it economically in maintenance.
3. No engine noise. You can listen to the wind and the birds.
4. Quick acceleration and no gearing.
The benefits for the society are:
1. No tailpipe emissions. Gasoline and Diesel cars have toxic exhaust emissions which create smog and is unhealthy and can even cause deadly diseases like lung cancer.
2. No engine noise
3. Far less energy use. The carbon footprint is far less than the footprint from dieasle and gasoline cars.
We think that the benefits outweigh the drawbacks.
See my other sites:
http://csens.org is a site presenting long time trends in pollution and environmental indicators
Some sites in Norwegian
I build bat houses presented here
We have an old boat