Do electric cars require different car parts?
The modern search for the next evolution of planet-friendly ‘green’ transportation has spurred many people to take a long look at electric cars as a possible alternative to fossil fuels, but can these vehicles really save you money over traditional combustion engines?
Like many broad questions, the answer here is both yes and no. Many of the more precision mechanical components of combustion engines are not found or even necessary in an electric vehicle. These missing components are also some of the most important to maintain, and the most expensive to repair or replace should damage occur, including the combustion engine and transmission system.
An electric motor, by comparison, is a much simpler mechanism that is relatively easier (and often cheaper) to inspect, maintain and repair. That having been said, many of the more basic auto car parts that require regular maintenance and repair are found in both electric cars and combustion vehicles, including the tires and brakes.
Will an electric car save you money?
Again, there is no absolute answer to this question. Over a period of several years, an electric car will definitely save you money on transit costs. In other words, it will cost you less per mile to travel with electricity than it would to travel with petrol. However, that is not the whole story.
The maintenance of the auto car parts common to both vehicle types is still required if you buy an electric vehicle and, while the combustion engine does require a significant amount of maintenance and repair, electric cars are laden with their own hidden costs. The most distracting of these is the vehicle’s core battery system, which can cost upwards of £6,000 – £9,000 to replace. Generally, these batteries are designed to function normally for approximately 100,000 miles of driving; however, like all batteries, they will slowly lose their ability to hold a charge over time.
There are many pros and cons to owning an electric car. They are undeniably better for the environment than their petrol-fuelled siblings, but are not without their own flaws. One concern is the so-called ‘range anxiety,’ as a fully-charged modern car battery generally has a range of only 50-80 miles (even less in cold weather). Additionally, traditional cars require only a few minutes to refuel, whereas their electric counterparts can take as long as 20 hours to fully charge. Owners of electric cars may also have difficulty having their vehicles serviced outside of a dealership which, depending on your warranty, may result in lesser or greater maintenance costs.
Due to the nature of these vehicles’ electric motors, and the reduced weight that comes from the removal of the combustion engine, electric vehicles are extremely nimble, featuring impressive acceleration but substandard maximum velocities (averaging at approximately 95 mph). Potential owners should weigh these factors before purchasing an electric car.