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Is an Electric Vehicle For You… Yet?

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Sorry Wyoming wheat farmer, maybe an electric vehicle isn’t for you… yet.
Sorry Wyoming wheat farmer, maybe an electric vehicle isn’t for you… yet.

Usually, you’d expect a site like The Green Optimistic to give you a list of reasons why you should definitely buy an electric vehicle, so here’s something a little bit different.

True, while I do feel that the electric vehicle will most likely replace all fossil-fuel-based transportation needs, I also realize there are certain circumstances in which an electric vehicle would be a bad choice. Even a recent UCS (Union of Concerned Scientists) report implies as much, noting that only about 42% of Americans could switch to an electric vehicle without a significant change in driving habits, but what about the other 58%?

As it turns out, a large chunk of people actually can’t get into an electric vehicle simply because they don’t have the circumstances. For example…

  • If you live in an apartment complex, you would most-likely have a lot of harrowing to do to get a charging station installed, and most managers wouldn’t look too kindly on an extension cord hanging from the 5th-floor.
  • Barring a home charging station, what about at work? Considering how new electric vehicle technology is, it should come as no surprise that not every business is scampering to install charging stations in their parking lots, reducing the chances you have to charge your battery.
  • Unless you can afford a 300-mile range Tesla Model S, you need to pay strict attention to your daily drive cycle. If your commute is 35 miles each way, and you have no charging station at work, you could be in for an unpleasant surprise as your range drops to zero in a Nissan LEAF. Learn to hypermile, and you just might make it.
  • Just like gasoline-powered cars at the turn of the last century, your access to electric vehicle charging stations is going to dictate where you can drive. In an EV-friendly city, such as San Francisco, you can expect to find dozens of well-placed charging stations. On the other hand, the entire state of Wyoming may have a dozen stations.

Still, if you take everything into consideration, such as your daily drive cycle and access to charging stations, at home, work, or otherwise, could you be in the 42%? Eventually, even that number is going to increase significantly, just as soon as we learn that breaking our addiction to fossil fuels doesn’t come with such grievous withdrawal pains as we imagine.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Recently learning so much about electric vehicles, I wish I could make the change over, but I live in Utah and I don’t think there is enough coverage to do so yet! Maybe in the next 10 years there will be enough charging stations that it will be easy to transition! Thanks for the article.

    • Hi, I’m the automotive scientist who gave Tesla Motors the plan for Tesla Roadster in 2002. I have had the solution for range limitation for a long time and there is no need for charging stations.

      I created lithium ion powered electric car in my proposal to Silicon Valley investors. They saw it wasn’t patented and stole it. Today, everyone is building plug in EV’s when the original plan was for the cars to charge themselves. Since they couldn’t figure it out, they ruled out the possibilities and are building charging stations across The U.S. and Europe.

      I refuse to give up my childhood dream to start my electric car company even though I lost the opportunity to be first. I can do better than Tesla, GM, and Nissan. Nunley Motor Crafts Ltd. will continue to seek funding. It’s only a matter of time before we go into production and the cat will be out the bag. It’ll only take one investor to make it happen.

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