Electric vehicles have been around for as long as gas cars, but gasoline fueled automobiles have dominated the consumer vehicle market since the roll-out of Henry Ford’s Model T. This has began to change in the last decade as more electric and hybrid vehicles have become available. Both gas and electric vehicles have their benefits and draw backs in terms of saving money, convenience, range, environmental impact and initial costs. A consumer needs to consider all of these factors when choosing the right vehicle for their needs.
The Benefits of Electric
Saving money in the long term is the primary benefit of owning an electric car. Electric vehicles have far fewer moving parts than combustion engines, meaning they require less maintenance overall. They also cost significantly less per mile to operate. When compared to gas vehicles, they effectively get more than 100 miles per gallon. This is because electricity is cheaper per unit of energy than gasoline and electric motors are more efficient. One complaint, however, is that electric vehicles don’t have a good range. The longest range electric vehicles don’t come close to that of the average gas car. Battery technology has developed at a rapid pace in the past decade, and as a result, electric vehicles are improving their range each passing year.
The Benefits of Gas
Gasoline powered automobiles take advantage of a modern infrastructure built for their presence. With gas stations and auto repair shops around every corner, owning a gas car is both convenient and easy. Gasoline cars are great for saving money on the upfront cost of purchasing a vehicle. Even with government rebates on electric vehicles, the cheapest gasoline powered economy cars are thousands of dollars more affordable. When it comes to refueling and range, gas cars have a clear advantage. Most electric cars can’t travel more than 150 miles at a time, and they can take up to 8 hours to recharge. Gasoline vehicles can have a range of 400 miles or more, and they can be refueled in only a few minutes.
Hybrid vehicles take advantage of the benefits that come from both electric and gas powered cars. Drivers who want increased fuel economy without sacrificing range and convenience should find hybrid vehicles an appealing option. As electric vehicle technology gets better over time, the benefits of hybrid cars may become overshadowed. For now, however, they are a great choice for the financially conscious consumer.