Whenever a new technology surfaces it can take time for the masses to come around to it. During this time, many misconceptions arise which end up being commonly believed, and the introduction of EVs has been no different.
There are a variety of myths surrounding EVs, so we’re going to look at some of the common ones and explain why these just aren’t true.
Myth one: EVs are more expensive than petrol and diesel vehicles
Some EV models may be slightly more expensive to buy than a comparable petrol/diesel model, but when determining expense it’s important to look at the lifespan of the vehicle, not just the initial purchase price.
Any vehicle needs to be either consistently charged or fuelled in order to run. Charging an EV is cheaper than fuelling a petrol/diesel alternative, even after the recent energy price hikes. Most drivers will have experienced some kind of mechanical fault with their vehicle throughout its lifespan, but since EVs have fewer moving parts they have a lower likelihood of breaking. As well as this, EVs depreciate less over time, meaning that when the time comes to sell your EV and purchase a new vehicle, you’re likely to get a higher return than that of a fuel alternative.
With all of this considered, EVs are most often cheaper throughout their lifespan than petrol and diesel vehicles.
Myth two: An EV’s range limits your journeys
A common reason that has held many drivers back from switching to an EV is battery range and the fear that this could limit journeys or leave them stuck on the road with an empty battery (known as range anxiety). With vehicle manufacturers constantly developing better batteries with longer ranges, this really isn’t a concern anymore.
Some EV models that are designed for city driving may have a lower range, but the average range of EVs currently on the market is 181 miles which is a substantial distance to travel before needing a recharge. A government survey found that 99% of UK journeys are under 100 miles, so a range of 181 miles is unlikely to cause an issue on a day-to-day basis.
Of course, most drivers will travel a longer distance on occasion, such as travelling across the country for business or a holiday, but in these instances you would need to refuel a petrol or diesel vehicle anyway, so stopping for a recharge isn’t much different. With rapid and ultra-rapid publicly accessible chargers popping up across the country, you don’t need to spend an extended period of time waiting for your EV to recharge. You should stop for short breaks when driving long distances anyway, and most of these charge points can get your EV ready to go within the time it takes for you to pop to the toilet and have a coffee.
Myth three: You need specialist insurance to cover an EV
While some insurers offer a dedicated product for EVs, it definitely isn’t a necessity. Many insurers cover EVs with their standard policies, and as the number of EVs on the road increases, more will follow suit.
It can be beneficial to take out a specialist policy for your EV as they often include extra perks such as battery cover and charging cable cover. However, if you’re simply looking for a basic level of cover, an insurer that covers EVs in its standard policies is more than fine to use.
Myth four: EVs can’t tow
When EVs were first introduced, this wasn’t exactly a myth. EVs are much heavier than fuel alternatives, so towing extra weight was harder to orchestrate. This added weight can cause problems for the brakes as well as significantly reduce battery life.
However, as a wider spread of vehicle manufacturers has begun fighting to produce the ‘best’ EV on the market, technology has advanced and many EVs can now tow. Each EV model must be ‘type approved’ in order to tow, but this is the same for fuel alternatives. A variety of EV models are now ‘type approved’, such as the Tesla Model Y, Audi e-tron, BMW iX, Polestar 2, Kia EV6 and many others. If you know you’ll need to tow with your vehicle, make sure you do some research into which EVs are suited for this.
Myth five: Manufacturing an EV produces more greenhouse gas emissions than it saves
This myth is another one that requires you to think of the lifespan of the vehicle. When producing the lithium-ion batteries that power EVs, additional energy is required and therefore the manufacturing process of an EV produces more greenhouse gas emissions than the production of a petrol/diesel alternative. It’s important to note that EV production is constantly getting cleaner as new methods are developed.
When looking at the lifespan of the vehicle, EVs have no tailpipe emissions, so cause much less pollution than that of a fuel alternative. Taking into account both battery production and disposal, EVs produce about ⅓ of lifetime greenhouse gas emissions compared to a new petrol/diesel vehicle.
Myth six: EV batteries can’t be recycled
With ecological impacts being a major driving force behind EV development, what happens to an EV battery at the end of its lifespan is important. EV batteries last for years, with many manufacturers offering an 8-10 year warranty. On top of this, the batteries often have a life beyond the vehicle.
Early EV batteries were much harder to recycle, but modern batteries are built with a high proportion of recyclable materials and most countries now see a high recycling rate, so this is progressively becoming less of a concern.
It can be easy to be led astray by myths with little evidence to back them up. If you’re considering making the switch to an EV but have any concerns similar to those mentioned above, be sure to do thorough research to be confident that what you’ve heard is true.
Images by Freepik. www.freepik.com