Electric Vehicle Myths
EVP Solutions have decided to tackle some of the typical EV ‘myths’ – ideas and conceptions often associated with EVs. So, if you have any questions on the below, please feel free to email us at email@example.com.
Myth 1 – “Are EVs a truly green solution or a silver bullet to solve climate change?”
Our first EV myth relates to the impact of vehicle production.
Detractors of EVs routinely highlight the carbon intensity of battery production, the carbon emissions from power generation and the disposal of batteries as to why EVs are not green. In some ways, they are right – EVs are not perfect, and there is much to improve in those elements.
However, EVs are still in their infancy and account for a fraction of all new vehicle sales – In the UK, it will comfortably take another 20 years before ICE cars are off our roads. Although, the government have tried to propel this date forward by banning the sale of all ICE vehicles by 2030. 2nd life and battery recycling will only increase as EVs become more mainstream and eventually mandatory.
We can also clearly see that carbon emissions from power production are rapidly falling and will continue to do so. The embedded carbon in batteries is an issue compared to ICE cars, although this balances out after about 20,000 miles. However, this is changing, as demonstrated by VW here. This is just another small step that is quietly happening to improve the overall environmental impact of EVs.
Myth 2 – “Electric Vehicles are not actually very environmentally friendly.”
“What happens to the battery in an EV at the end of the life of the vehicle?”
“Solar and Wind power are great, but they don’t always generate electricity when the Grid needs it”
Currently, traditional lead-acid batteries are widely recycled. However, this is not the case for lithium-ion batteries in EVs. But manufacturers are already starting to move forwards with new ways of ensuring their vehicles batteries do not end up in a landfill site. For instance, Volkswagen opened a recycling plant in 2021 to recycle up to 3,600 batteries a year. Nissan also utilises their Leaf batteries in guided vehicles that deliver vehicle parts to workers in their factories.
It is also true that solar and wind power alone will currently not suffice for the National Grid’s requirement. However, an ever-growing portion of the UK’s energy requirements is fulfilled with energy produced sustainably, helping the UK reach the carbon-neutral goal set for 2050.
Myth 3 – “I don’t have a driveway, so how can I charge my EV?”
This is something the industry empathises with and is constantly improving.
New technologies such as street light chargers and bollards are now being distributed around the UK and are constantly advancing. They provide those without driveways the opportunity to charge their vehicles when parked at home.
There is certainly the opportunity to develop charging infrastructure available to people at the workplace. Many people commute to their workplace and leave their car sitting in the car park for significant parts of the day. Could this be the best opportunity for you to charge your EV?
Are you a forward-thinking employer making proactive decisions to ensure your workforce is EV ready? If so, EVP can assist in developing a plan to implement EV charging.
Myth 4 – “Public Charging for EVs is very awkward.”
The lack of roaming or charge point interoperability (i.e., you have an account/RFID card with one network but can use that account to pay at other networks) is seen as a barrier to EV uptake.
We believe that it’s an inconvenience rather than the barrier that many make it out to be – the idea that you currently need dozens of apps or RFID cards is an exaggeration.
Most people already have numerous apps on their phones for car parking. Therefore, utilising other apps for charging isn’t a huge issue.
However, making the process simpler and more convenient is a good thing and will only help improve living with an EV.
There will be problems, though. For example, who do you call if your RFID card doesn’t work at a charge point? The charge point operator (CPO) or the mobility service provider (MSP) – I foresee that there will be times when both parties say that the fault lies with the other and the driver is left stuck.
We will be keeping our separate apps, just in case!
Myth 5 – “There is a lack of choice in the Electric Vehicle market.”
Our next electric vehicle myth concentrates on the choice in the EV market.
Perhaps this may have been true in the past. However, there is now a wide range of products on the market for potential Electric Vehicle (EV) drivers.
Whether you need the top end, high specification vehicles, such as a Tesla – or a more affordable, practical smaller car such as the Nissan Leaf, there is an EV for everyone. In addition, multiple electric commercial vehicles also now being available.
Manufacturers continue to develop their EV range further (in line with the 2030 ban on petrol and diesel cars), so the vehicles on offer will continue to expand in choice. Even ‘classic’ hatchbacks such as the Volkswagen Golf have been updated to create the Volkswagen ‘e-Golf’.
Myth 6 – “They are too expensive.”
As with any car, electric or not, some are more expensive than others. The price of the vehicle depends on the specification chosen.
Although electric vehicles are generally more expensive to purchase initially, you must calculate the Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) before choosing a vehicle.
For instance, the VW e-Golf 2020 edition has a total upfront cost of £34,400 (car = £27,900, PV = £6,000, home charger = £500, whereas the standard VW Golf has a total upfront cost of £26,500.
However, considering that monthly electricity costs for an individual travelling 10,000 miles would be £14, compared to £145 a month for the petrol equivalent. This represents a saving of £131 a month. In addition to this, you would not need to pay road tax on the e-Golf, further compounded by lower maintenance costs because of fewer moving parts.
Additionally, there is the OZEV grant available. Consumers can get up to £1,500 off an EV costing up to £32,000. Again, this makes purchasing EVs cheaper and more attractive.
Used EVs have also started to fall in price throughout 2023, dropping by 21.2% over the first four months of 2023.
Myth 7 – “The battery runs out of charge too quickly.”
When EVs first came to the UK market, electric hatchbacks could do between 70 and 100 miles. Today, EVs can easily cover over 200 miles, and some can reach 300 miles on a single charge.
For most people, that is plenty of charge for undertaking normal, day to day journeys.
However, a limited battery range will always be a factor when deciding whether an EV is suitable. ‘Range anxiety’ is a commonly used term when describing worry linked to the vehicle’s range.
To counteract range anxiety, consumers need to be aware of the improved battery life and more comprehensive charging infrastructure available. Furthermore, infrastructure will only continue to improve.
Also, most electric vehicles can guide the driver to the nearest charge point.
Myth 8 – “They are too slow.”
At the very top speeds, combustion engines do still slightly have the speed advantage of their electric counterparts. Although, we hope our readers are not trying to reach 200mph on UK roads!
However, this is not the case with the acceleration of the vehicle. Electric motors provide instant acceleration for the vehicle. This is advantageous when looking to overtake and makes EVs enjoyable to drive.
Myth 9 – “The national grid won’t be able to cope with the additional power demand.”
Our final, commonly heard electric vehicle myth focuses on the potential national grid challenge.
As more electrically powered vehicles begin to use our roads, there will undoubtedly be greater demand for energy from the national grid to power those vehicles.
Because of this additional demand, we sometimes hear that the national grid won’t cope, and we will have a power shortage.
The national grid has been proactive in developing a ‘Future Energy Scenarios’ report, which highlighted the need for the grid to work with the charging infrastructure industry to ensure most charging takes place at night utilising drip charging.
There will also be a need to continue developing and improving the renewable energy sources available in the UK, as it seems counter-productive to utilise non-renewable energy sources to power the eco-friendly car.