How Much Does It Cost To Charge An Electric Car?
04.17.2014 - by Plug In America
How Much Does It Cost To Charge An Electric Car?

The cost to charge an electric vehicle varies depending on the vehicle, local electricity rates, and driving habits, but on average, an electric vehicle driver will pay just 25–50% of what they would pay in a comparable gasoline vehicle.

To estimate your charging costs, visit, enter your ZIP code, select your vehicle, and then click the Charging tab.

By Tom Moloughney – UPDATED November 2016

There are many reasons for considering making an electric car the next car you buy or lease. Besides the many environmental benefits, the promise of energy security, the silky-smooth driving experience with instant torque available without delay, and low maintenance, one of the best characteristics of electric vehicles is how little they cost to operate.

Just as with gasoline cars, some electric vehicles are more efficient than others, and the average EV needs about 30 kWh of electricity to power the vehicle for 100 miles. For example, the EPA rating for the Nissan LEAF is exactly 30 kWh per 100 miles. A Tesla Model S 60D is rated at a combined 32 kWh per 100 miles and uses a little more energy since it’s heavier and more powerful than a LEAF. The Chevrolet Bolt is currently the most efficient electric car and has a combined consumption rating of 28 kWh per 100 miles. The consumption for all electric vehicles can be viewed at the US Department of Energy’s website:

According to Researchers at the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute, the sales-weighted average fuel economy of all new vehicles sold in the United States in 2016 was 25.3 mpg. The average cost for a gallon of regular gasoline in the US over the past two years was $2.35/gallon. Using 15,000 miles as the average amount of miles a person will drive in a year, the annual cost of gasoline for the average car will be about $1,400 per year, using the average cost of gasoline in the US from 2015 through 2016. One thing to also consider is that the cost of gasoline is currently much lower than it has been through most the past decade and it’s likely to rise again sometime soon.

All of the electricity we use in America is domestically produced, and that’s a large part of why the cost remains stable. The average cost of electricity in the US is 12 cents per kWh. Therefore, the average person driving the average EV 15,000 miles per year pays about $540 per year, or $45 per month, to charge it.

Tesla Model S charging

The cost of electricity throughout the US varies much more than gasoline does, but its cost over time is much more stable. Unlike with gasoline, there aren’t huge spikes in electricity rates if a refinery has a problem, and neither does the price skyrocket when there is political instability in one of the large oil producing countries as we have often seen in the past. All of the electricity we use in America is domestically produced, and that’s a large part of why the cost remains stable. The average cost of electricity in the US is 12 cents per kWh. Therefore, the average person driving the average EV 15,000 miles per year pays about $540.00 per year to charge it. As mentioned, the cost of electricity can vary greatly depending on where you live, but in order to equal the price of the average gasoline car’s fuel costs, the price of electricity would have to be 2.5 times the national average, and cost 31 cents per kWh. The average person would save roughly $860 per year in fuel alone, and that’s assuming gasoline prices remain at their historically low current levels. Gasoline prices frequently spike up and down, but in the long run they always goes up. Electricity costs do eventually increase also, but not nearly at the pace of gasoline. Plus, with fewer moving parts, EVs cost much less to maintain. If you combine the fuel savings with the reduced maintenance costs, it’s clear to see an EV will cost you much less in the long run, even if it costs a little more up front.

164 comments on “How Much Does It Cost To Charge An Electric Car?”
  1. Martie says:

    I am not sure if I trust this article, because the cost calculation will also include the zone weather you are in and how much extra energy is used in places that are cold or have extreme weather conditions. How much would it cost in an area such as that. I think in the city its is easier, but for hauling through the snow … I am not clear on that being affordable. It is a work in progress. I am not negative about any of it, but not seeing it simply. I also wonder about mechanic available for repair in smaller areas. I personally would never feel great about not being my driver and using Ai. but I use cruise control, but still — I think so much of it makes me think for weird scifi TV shows like Dr who and being attacked by your Ai car. So there is that thought in the back of ones mind.

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  3. Manoj Kshetrapal says:

    280 kWh needed per month so it will cost less using solar however the charging speed might vary

  4. D Tulan says:

    Electric cars puts an end to gasoline transportation, which is danger ridden and environment unfriendly. This is one more plus point for going electric.

  5. Gary M says:

    We are having trouble putting the math in perspective. We have 27 solar panels, which generate 45KWh on a good summer day (obviously, much less in the winter). This is way more than enough to run our entire house and we build the credit over the summer and use it in the winter. We thought having an electric car and charging if off our solar panels would make great financial and environmental sense. However, looking at the numbers…minimum 30KWh per 100 miles does not support this. 20-25KWh is about what it takes to run our whole house per day (2200 ft2), including electric dryer, two refrigerators, one freezer, and two double wall ovens. At 120 miles per day commute, does it really take more KWh to charge an EV than to run our entire house? The math says it does. Are we missing something? If this were the case, then no one would buy an EV. Please comment.

  6. Home Deluxe says:

    Your place is valuable for me. Thanks!

  7. Don says:

    I’m seeing a lot of optimistic posts here that don’t make much sense, particularly the ones concerning California, where taxes and fees make home charging typically about $0.25/kw-hr, whereas the all-included cost of charging at remote chargers is even more.

  8. Nate says:

    Can anyone here help me out…I would like to get a plug in hybrid but I cannot make it make $$$ sense. Because I go past the baseline usage and we are a two tier price system my KWH charge is $0,43 per KWH. at that price it makes no sense.

    I can pay to have a separate meter put in and be at a lower rate but its $10K to put in the second meter which is crazy!

    Any other N CA hybrid users figure this out?

    1. Marc Geller says:

      If you get a plug-in car you are eligible to go on the PG&E EV-A rate, which does not require a separate meter. It eliminates tiers for your whole house, and has a rate of $0.12/kWh from 11pm to 7am M-F. All the weekend except 3pm – 7pm is also at the low rate. This should change your calculation, no?

  9. Craig says:

    I am currently on an EV rate plan with Pacific Gas and Electric in the SF Bay Area, CA whereby I pay .125/kWh from 11pm to 7am. I “fill” my Chevy Bolt for 8 hrs at a cost of about $7.20 giving me 200 miles. I’m driving at a cost of .036/mile. Compare that to a car that gets 25 mpg at about $2.80 per gallon. Those same 200 miles for a gas car cost $22.40 ….. over 3x the cost of electric! Guess when we run our dishwasher (delayed start) and clothes dryer? Yep … late at night. I never saw a difference in my bill by going to the time of use rates from usage tiers where I could get up to a .33 rate. This great off-peak rate is much longer on the weekends making the savings even grater.

  10. Allen Bennnett says:

    I’ve read the comments and replies until my eyes hurt and so far I haven’t seen any comment regarding the ultimate outcome of switching to all electric cars. Namely, once we’re totally dependent on electricity as a portable fuel, the government will tax it, the utility companies will increase the price to make “renewable” electricity more than the cost of fossil fuels. Remember once we have these systems built and laws passed to codify renewable electricity production we will never be able to go back to any other options. This is the driving force for immediately enacting such legislation. Government programs never go away even though the wealth distribution and increased cost are all redirected as politicians see fit. So even if the world undergoes drastic cooling we’ve crossed the tipping point for alternate fuel production.

    1. patrickelectrick says:

      and yet the Sun comes up every morning……

  11. John says:

    This article is purely an economic viewpoint. The counter argument is that electricity (thermo electric power plants) is by far the highest consumer of fresh water on the planet. So you go right ahead and drive electric, your children won’t have drinking water. The answer is renewable energy light solar. There are many solar car projects and several European companies actually sell them. Stop trying to dupe consumers into buying electric cars.

    1. Geo says:

      Water doesn’t disappear….

    2. Jodi Haney says:

      or buy wind energy and put solar panels on your house… I’ve done both.

      1. JJM says:


        Electric + renewable energy like the rest of the modern world.

  12. No free lunch says:

    Interesting, has anyone thought about the tax side of the argument. From what I can tell somewhere between $.50 to $1/ gallon goes to the Feds and state for infrastructure, bridges, roads, etc. I suspect it will not be long before electric cars start getting taxed to preserve the cash flow.

    1. Waldo says:

      Solar energy can reduce the cost because once you pay for it it’s free from then on. So even if they do increase the tax rates to pay compensate for the loss, your still ahead of the game.

      1. Randy says:

        And we all know solar panels and the infrastructure to install and utilize them are free too.

    2. Ben says:

      Washington State has a $150/year EV licensing fee to offset gas tax losses.

  13. FireBaron says:

    Here in Connecticut, we get hit with a double charge. Thanks to a massive mistake by a previous Governor who bought into Enron’s claims hook, line and sinker, we now have the highest electrical rates in the country, because we pay anywhere between 8 to 15 cents per kilowatt hour (depending on the service you contract with) but then Eversource charges around 11 cents per KWH to deliver it! I have a round trip commute of 85 miles each day. I would have to plug in as soon as I got home, provided I didn’t have to run an air conditioner because of the temperature and humidity both being in the upper 80s, or the heater because it’s in the 20s

    1. Doug McKinley SR says:

      Few problems – COST, INFRASTRUCTURE, POLLUTION that electric does not seem to solve for me.

      COST – Driving 1,000 miles a month and getting 30 kWh/100m would be 300 kWh. In San Diego that puts me well over my baseline and I would get charged 38.7 cents a Kwh. That is $116 for 1,000 miles. A hybrid doing 54 miles a gallon would use 18.5 gallons, Gas would have to go to $6.27 a gallon before the electric car is cheaper to run (assuming electricity does not go up).

      INFRASTRUCTURE – Currently electrical vehicles are less than 1% of all vehicles. Where is all this new infrastructure going to come from to power all these elective vehicles? It is now summertime – everyone is coming home from work and turning on the air conditioners and plugging in their electric vehicle. Obviously, you also need an intelligent charger so it will not start until after peak demand. Are there now enough hours to charge your battery so you make the round trip to work tomorrow?

      POLLUTION – 65% of electric production is done by fossil fuels. So, we move the pollution from San Diego to somewhere else? Maybe a huge plant down in Mexico? Also as gas prices rise so will electric prices as they both are based on fossil fuels. so, for me, electric is never cheaper than hybrid.

      Maybe Hydrogen cells actually do make sense?

      1. Sean says:

        I did a little research and all of things you said didn’t make much sense.

        1. COST -The average residential electricity rate in San Diego is 16.35¢/kWh. Which is 6.58% greater than the California average rate of 15.34¢/kWh. The residential rates in the U.S. range from 8.37¢/kWh to 37.34¢/kWh. Your claim of 38.7 cents a Kwh, which I doubt, is about 237% of San Diego average and I guess you are paying 1.36¢/kWh more than the highest paying residential electricity in US. You are being robbed by electric company if your claim is true and you can sue them since electricity is being regulated by the government.

        2. INFRASRUCTURE – I didn’t even research for this because I didn’t need to. Electric cars are at its infancy/adolescence. Tesla literally just produced FIRST EVER mass produced electric car and you are going to tell me it a PROBLEM? Infrastructure is a huddle that electrical vehicles have to go through. The question is how well they are going to make it work.

        3. POLLUTION – Yes, 65% of electric production is done by fossil fuels in 2016. However, fossil fuel energy is at its peak/declining and solar and renewable energy is growing at a fast late. You can’t expect a dramatic change over a year or even 10years. It’s life long process that needs to be done for the future.

        1. C.J. H. says:

          Please calculate for me how much tax will be added to the electricity used to power electric cars… Gasoline is taxed heavily to maintain road infrastructure. You can’t use ‘present day’ electricity costs and apply them to the future. The U.S. will have to TAX electric cars electricity use to maintain highways… And then there is the renewable energy story, solar & wind still haven’t paid-out without huge government subsidies so renewable is not the answer… yet.

      2. John U'Ren says:

        Hi Doug,

        Thank you for your feedback. We have some good news. Many EV drivers in San Diego participate in the utility’s EV time-of-use rate, where drivers can program their cars to automatically charge during the cheapest times of night, and during the summer that is 19 cents per kWh. During the winter months kWh prices don’t go above 23 cents during any time of the day. This substantially cuts the cost of charging for drivers.

        As for charging the cars, all cars come with a charger that plugs into a standard 110-volt outlet. For faster charging, the cost of Level 2 (240-volt) chargers have come down substantially to under $500 in some cases. In addition, SDG&E’s Power Your Drive program is installing 3,500 EV charging stations in apartments, condos and workplaces to help meet this need. There are also more than 1,140 Level 2 and 86 DC Fast Chargers available to the public to use.

        Your region currently has one of the greenest grids with 43% of SDG&E’s portfolio being made up of renewable resources, and no coal.

        1. Richard S says:

          Move to Vegas. Our time of use rates for electric vehicles are $.04 per kwh in the winter (all day long) and $.05 per kwh from 10pm-6am in the summer. Never charge your car in the summer in the middle of the day.

      3. Jambo says:

        You need some solar panels, Doug! My relatively small 4kW system last year generated 115 kWh more per month than I used which would be a good chunk of your EV charging right there. A slightly bigger system would cover all of it. Yeah, there’s an initial investment but my payback period is less than ten years and that’s in Minnesota where I’m only paying $.11 per kWh so your payback would be less than a third of that if the price you quoted is correct. Plus I lose several days worth of power every year due to snow cover on the panels, something I assume is not an issue in San Diego.

    2. J Fountaine says:

      I an in San Diego, with SDG&E as electric provider. We here wish we had your electrical rates. We pay much more for base and if you exceed that level, it just goes up per KWH. As of February, SDG&E’s average residential rate for electricity was 21.1 cents per kilowatt hour, and is expected to rise beyond 23.3 cents this summer.

  14. Tim Horton says:

    I travel from Vancouver BC to LA visiting family from time to time. Also have family living x Canada that I visit with the same distance.
    Let say I wanted to take EV for that trip. 1200 M.
    120 M per tank. Recharge 10 times. 2 hours of driving 4 Hours of charging. 6 Hours per cycle.
    60 hours.
    Normally I would put in 2 — 12 hour days. One night in Hotel.
    With EV I need to take 5 days to do the same trip.
    2 cycles of 2 hours and 2 cycles of charging 8 hours = 12 hours HOTEL
    5 days. 5 nights in hotel.
    Not exactly practical. I guess for going to and from work and local shopping it would work but not in real life of traveling.
    For me a Hybrid is a much better solution.

    1. frank barthelow says:

      We just completed a 1300 mile round trip to Salt Lake City for thanksgiving. Our fuel costs were $0.0 due to free charging at the Tesla provided Superchargers. Stopping to charge did increase the elapsed time driving for the trip but not by much. With our level 2 charger at home we would spend about $0.20/Kilowatt hour for charging, although we avail ourselves of local free Superchargers when convenient. Our trip included mountain driving and we consumed about 400 Watt hours/mile which would be about $0.08/mile if we had done all charging at our home electric rates. Typically, on the road, we spent about 50 minutes total waiting on charging. Two charges were spent when either having a meal or overnight at a motel. We spent 1 night each way in a hotel which was the same as when we were driving our ICE automobile. When we expand our solar system to provide for home charging we will have a marginal cost of -0- for our electric automobile charging. Our personal experience indicates to us that EV’s are practicable and certainly the future.

  15. Vallorie Tarvin says:

    I don’t know how people can afford an expensive car to only drive 100 miles and then have to charge it. How long does it take? When was it that California was complaining about shortage of electricity 15 yrs ago maybe. Now we have electric cars to plug in at home. Geez, let’s add more to my all ready ridiculous electric bill. Now California has installed charging stations in small cities around the San Joaquin Valley at no cost to charge. HAAAA, why do you think you DMV fees are so high and will keep go up. Now I have to pay for other people’s electric cars. This is insane. I think there is so many lies about the cost of gas and electricity. Not only that in the mid 1970’s a friend of mine’s brother made a carburetor that got 80 miles to the gallon. An oil company bought the design and rights to it. Hence, he wasn’t thinking at the time. No you have not seen this because that would change the cost of gas. We are being ripped off and no one seems to care.

  16. Fina says:

    Brief pros and cons please of ownerz of electric vehicles only. Take your essays and arguments to school or court rooms thanx

  17. Les says:

    Do NOT be lied to about the Chevy Bolt and all the EV plugs being the same. I was told I could charge a Bolt using the Tesla charge stations and that the MyChevy app tells you where you can charge your car. IT DOES NOT! It tells you where the charge stations are and that’s it. NONE of the charge stations I went to would charge my Bolt and I had to have it towed 186 miles to my home by AAA.

    1. JesseDiaz says:

      I would concur with this comment but would like to add not to depend SOLELY on what the deller is telling you. Just like any other product you are thinking about purchasing, do you research. I purchased my Bolt but looked to many sources and found out that alot of what was out there for the Bolt was not true. I also found that the ChevyApp was weak as it relates to using it to locate stations

    2. Richard S says:

      Just download the Chargepoint app for your Bolt. It tells you where all of the charging stations are and what type they are, It also tells you which ones are available and how much charging you have done. It will alert you when your Bolt is full. I use it all the time. The Mychevrolet app right now is pretty bad. They have only been working to improve it for4months !!!!

  18. Pete says:

    I understand that those who can afford it are happy to pay more for innovation and going green, But this who[e EV vs gasoline argument from an economic stand point is pretty clear if you can do math. Unless you regularly mooch off of someone’s charging station, electric vehicles cost more in energy per mile than a comparably sized vehicle at today’s electric and gas prices in California. Wth today’s numbers, my plug in Prius costs $1.80 in electricity to go it’s 20 mile EV range. That same distance in gasoline only costs $1.00. I’m not plugging it in as using gasoline is way cheaper. Maybe when electricity costs go down (doubtful), or gasoline prices go way up, I’ll think about plugging it in.

    1. PrimeinDallas says:

      Curious, what part of the country are you in and what do you pay per kilowatt hour. I’ve been wanting to do this math and really appreciate you posting this. I pay $00.10.8

    2. JesseDiaz says:

      I think the argument also depend on if you have Solar Panels. I installed Solar Panels about a year ago and planned the install to offset my cost by 110%. So that made the decision to go total EV (no hybrid, etc ) easy

      1. Chris Courage says:

        I have a 2014 Volt, and been averaging less than $60/month for all electric use for my house and car included.. I leased it new @$300/month for 3 years 36k miles, and have driven it 28000 miles so far. I love it…. The volt may have four wheels and an engine, but it is definitely not like other cars…. Every volt driver out there will tell you the the same thing. People with no experience in the driver’s seat of a volt have no idea what they are talking about. Zero credibility. Even the so-called mathematicians, not a clue.

        1. Chris Courage says:

          …I should add, over these three years I’ve used 375 gallons of gasoline, most of it during the winters when the engine runs to heat the cab… Some on a few long-distance trips.

          1. Tyler says:

            I drove a ’14 Volt and I did not like the seating position. It felt like I was driving a bathtub with terrible blind spots. There’s also zero room in the back seat when I’m driving.

            The Leaf on the other hand feels much more nimble and has fits the 4 of us comfortably with room in the back still.

            I wanted to like the Volt because I don’t want to worry about having a dead battery, but it just wasn’t nice to drive and the engine had a weird vibration while it was running.

  19. Dennis says:

    To Zoe. I suggest looking into installing a couple of commercial style evse that could meter the electricity used. Condo association would own it and it’s an amenity to the unit owners. Something like a chargepoint station (some around me here in NJ) that the user needs a tag to activate. Condo association sets the cost to recoup the hardware and electricity provided. If visitors use it, so what? They are helping the condo association pay off the hardware more quickly. Just price it reasonably based on the speed of the evse. If it puts out 7.2kw hour, figure your electric cost per kilowatt times 7 or 8 and add a tiny bit, a half dollar, $.50 per use to cover hardware. List it on Plugshare and you’ll have the occasional visitor use to subsidize the cost. You just want users to cover the cost, not make a profit. Revisit it in 6 months to see if you’re bringing in enough to recover the hardware cost in a couple of years. If you have electric dryers in the condo units just think of it as the same electricity use a few hours a week to charge the automobiles. Do you count how many loads of laundry each unit uses? If you don’t then count the EVs as another load of laundry…

    1. CJH says:

      The re-charging is absolutely the biggest hurdle… I think all the e-cars should have the exact same battery pack, or at least only one or two styles… also, make the battery pack easily removable so you could pull into a charging station and have the battery pack ‘replaced’ like a large version of the battery packs used in yard work equipment like Ryobi… the charging station then safely recharges the battery for the next customer.

      1. Chris Simith says:

        Ben Sullins, who has a YouTube channel has the answer you need, research it if interested. He collected data for ALL Tesla S’s all over the world, to tracking usage, decrease in efficiency, and breakdown. Zero breakdowns after 8 years, max of like 5% capacity decrease, and no complaints of note. One case where a battery pack needed to be changed was well within warranty period, wasn’t due to end of use issues. Many early S models are still out there at or around the 500,000 mile mark, with no significant battery degradation above 5%. Hope tha reassures you on that score.

        Have you ever had an engine blow up or seize? I did when I ran over a cobblestone in a Volvo S40, which ruptured my oil pan. My insurance covered it with replacement with a similar age engine, and I paid only my deductible. I still insure with the same company.

        As for the argument about similar or the same (uniform) EV batteries, what would you say to limiting all engines to 4 (or 6, 8, 12, 16 – take your choice) cylinders “to make it easy”. Same difference. Each can choose the capacity that suits their pocket book, needs… whatever.
        This is a new field, it’ll take 10 years to shake out the failures and successes. In the meanwhile, no doubt those Early Innovators will buy what is currently no doubt expensive, but the market will finally prevail and cheaper, more efficient EV’s will appear. Save your money if you feel that’s the right thing to do and wait it out.

        Watching from the sidelines since 2012 (I still haven’t dipped a toe in the EV market, but have formed an opinion), I was one of those who in the ’90s almost went with a turbo-diesel vehicle – remember those? I’m glad now I didn’t. At this time there are plenty of naysayers, only time will tell. Plus battery technology and price has to improve. Prof John Goodenough (real name!), the father of the Li-ion battery, recently announced his lab colleagues have come up with a Sodium-ion battery. That should be commercially available in 7-10 yrs. China has been trying to corner the rare-earths market, driving battery costs up. Also waiting in the wings – super capacitors for storage, based on graphene,

        Re battery swapping, Elon Musk had a YouTube video of a Tesla S getting its battery swapped out in half the time it took to fill a BMW 3-Series gas tank (all Tesla S’s and X’s upto now can have this done). The Press and the Public were invited to this demo. 7 reporters and zero public members turned up. The video exists, if you care to view it, as I did. I know of no other individual manufacturer who has or is building this capability into their EV’s. Musk quit doing this when designing the Modek 3.

        I don’t consider myself a champion of Tesla or any other company, but currently they jumped into a lead by, I feel, the smart move of establishing the supercharger network, then sequentially producing exciting cars, now trying to get get a mass-market car, where they are currently stuttering. Maybe Ford or Chevy or some other manufacturer will come up with better products, at better prices. Who knows, I certainly don’t. Wait and see or jump in now, it’s a personal choice, but I doubt the internal combustion engine is dead – it just doesn’t know it. Humanity needs fossil-related oil, but not to burn. We need it for a myriad other products. Same with coal, it won’t ever quit being mined, whether to make graphene or industrial diamonds.

  20. Dennis says:

    We have a 2013 Smart ED (Sept 2013) and a 2002 Honda Accord.. Honda needed at about 70,000 miles timing belt replacement for $1,000, at 95,000 miles $4000 for a transmission & transmission mount, now at 150,000 miles again requires another $1,000 on timing belt replacement. Lost track of oil changes but I have done at least 20 on the Honda, $400 worth plus transmission fluid changes (forgot how much) Engine air filters every other year; 7 at about $20 each. It goes on, and that’s for a reliable well maintained ice vehicle. At least Smart has no transmission. No timing belt, no engine air filter, no oil changes. Smart maintenance so far, 1 dessicant cartridge $40, changed it myself in the driveway. I lease the battery for 10 years so warrantied 10 years, then I own it. Everything eventually wears down. Came to the realization that we only drive 250 mile trips about 3 or 4 times a year, maybe 6 times a year do about 100-150 mile trips. Everything else is within the Smart’s range and we have done over 100 miles a day in it (just charging in-between). Almost anything out today with a bigger battery & level 3 charging would suit us to replace the Honda.. Just waiting for another year or two to scuttle or sell the Honda and upgrade to a higher distance capable EV. Maybe new or used, a used EV still beats a new ice car.

    1. Chris Simith says:

      Yep, people are waiting for a 400-mile range battery equipped car to do that range in one hop 3-6 times a year, while they drive 40-60 miles daily for 300-350 days a year dragging that heavy battery pack daily, using extra energy just to do that! Waste

  21. Miro Kefurt says:

    It is interesting to see that no one ever adds up the cost of battery replacement !
    When that is included all the saving over ICE is gone !!!

    1. Than Tiet says:

      When you lease an EV for 3 or for years,you can return the car before ever coming close to having to change the battery,or brakes.

      1. Matt says:

        Yep, replace the battery and have a car that lasts another 10-14 years, depending on where you live. Seems like a total rip-off.

  22. Karl says:

    I live in Pensacola, FL and I’m considering a used Leaf since I never buy new. I’m generating about 13 kw per day with gridtie solar and the best part is, I have a solar installation Co around the corner with a free charging station available. Their roof and awnings are covered with solar so, I suspect their charging costs are negligible. I would sell my V8 Lexus that I love but, no longer use for long commutes. I feel like the time may not be right because of the upcoming 200 mile / 60 kw battery Nissan has on the way. Ranges of 120+ miles would definitely convince me to go EV. In the meantime, I love riding my 100mpg Honda scooter 95% of the time. Convincing my wife to drive the pretty ugly Leaf is another story. I’ll revisit this decision in a year, or two.

  23. Mike says:

    I am considering a used Nissan Leaf but I have a different set of circumstances than most on this thread. I live in Hawaii and our cost of electricity is 33 cents/kwh. I have 20 solar panels on my roof that generate between 650 – 800 kwh per month. The electric company buys back around 550 kwh . I end up with a credit each month becaues we use less than we generate. Our power bill is the $18 minimum. At the end of the year HECO zero’s the balance and last year they cancelled the $500 they owed me. Living in Hawaii we have no long trips so the 80 mile so distance is not a problem. If I use 12 kwh per day to charge the car that is about 400 kwh per month.. I don’t know if I can justify an electric car at our high electricity rates, even with a full PV system.

  24. Paulf says:

    Wow, after reading all the zealots expounding on their chests, I am now more than terrified of getting an EV or an ICE vehicle!

    My salvation maybe the simple fact that I need a vehicle that stays in the city limits and thus 80 miles of range is more than sufficient for my transporting needs.

    Then I also feel good that I can buy a Leaf SV for about $7K for a 2013 with 20k miles on it, so I figure that means most, if not all, of the depreciation is gone. I could not buy a decent Versa for that price by the way.

    So now that I am more calm, I think a Leaf with my electric rate at 8 cents per KWh and the above mentioned purchase price means I should be ok and won’t have to take any more Prozac.

    1. Matt says:

      If you live in a northern state you can’t find a better used car for the money. Your math is correct. At that price, you will save about $100 a month in gas/maintenance and if you keep it long enough, it will essentially be free (in savings) as compared to an ICE vehicle. Unfortunately extreme heat damages the Nissan Leaf battery. Wouldn’t recommend it in the southern heat. 2013 SV w/led headlights, 1 brake flush $99, two cabin filters $30, set of new tires $400, windshield wipers $10, and less than $900 in electric from new; 57,000 miles. Zero issues, beyond the savings it’s a fun car to drive, quick off the line. Unfortunately I paid $15k for mine in 2015 w/24K miles. That’s what they were going for then… Great car for 54 mile round trip work commute, charged to 80%. The battery charge on the right side of the dash also shows how degraded the battery is. This is the most important thing consider in the used market other than a clean title. Always owned Toyota Camry’s, F150’s. The Leaf is next level zero maintenance. Makes the Toyota look expensive to own. (If you are buying used….) new values drop like a rock, kills any of the savings. Would keep the car until I die, but I want the Tesla and they want my $$$$….. to be honest my ATV cost as much as a used Leaf, incredible value as they retailed for about $34K MSRP. Do it!

  25. Zoe says:

    I’m in Pasadena, Ca in a condo. We have two owners in our 12 unit facility that have purchased or leased electric cars. The problem we are having is how to determine the cost of electricity used by the vehicles. Unfortunately, we have one meter for the whole complex. One owner feels the vehicle is like adding another electrical appliance, i.e. a microwave or toaster. The other owner had a portable charging station put on the garage wall and recently got the proper insurance. He doesn’t agree with paying an additional fee but says he will. In the meantime, he has put his condo on the market. Tension is thick. As a board member, I want to learn as much as I can about this issue. We had come up with a monthly amount @$60 but the more I read, the more I think that may be too high. Also, we’ve added the requirement that owners with electric cars have a separate meter installed to fairly look at costs but that is a cost for them. Any advice?

    1. Geno AZ says:

      I wonder if there isn’t a small, simple device like a Kill A Watt to put on the incoming lines to keep track of energy use per unit and then split the total monthly bill proportionately.

  26. The ONLY reason I got a Leaf was to be able to utilize the carpool lanes for my commute and the 2 bridge tolls I pay every day, are cut in half. This is in the SF Bay Area.
    What I have found out about electric vehicle ownership is this:
    There are very few “free” opportunities to charge.
    Many charging stations are in disrepair with no help in sight and/or already taken when needed.
    Range anxiety is really, “Finding a place to charge anxiety”.
    The cost savings are minimal, especially since the cost of gasoline has dropped, for now.
    The 2 year, free to charge card I received from Nissan, as an incentive, was/is not useful at many stations and in fact, is no
    longer accepted by the Blink Network at all, after one year of having it.
    The “Free” Level II charging unit, promised by Nissan at the time of purchase, NEVER materialized. It’s been a year and a half since I purchased the car.
    Some charging stations, because of their fees, actually cost over 10.00 for a charge that gives me 82 miles of driving. Not much savings there.
    Anyway, I wouldn’t buy an electric vehicle again, until the infrastructure supports it in a better way.

    1. Chris Simith says:

      Replying Norma, sorry to see that you provoked a blather that while it has useful points (by Anonymous) it wasn’t presented in a useful manner, though I basically agree with all the points he/she stated.

      This is where the EV manufacturers are failing us, the public. Some of them replaced the engine of an ICE model with a battery pack, didn’t consider its placement, capacity etc. As much as giving choices of a 4, 6 or 8 cylinder engine, say in a Camaro, they could give different size battery choices, and design or change a design to place it optimally.

      Nissan duped you with the charging capability at public charging points, and had you researched this, you’d have realized that your best charge point was in your own home for most home-owners. Renters do have other issues to deal with.

      Public charging, in my opinion, should be as a last resort or for desperate situations. Buy a car suitable for your daily commutes, with a 50% to 75% reserve depending on your range anxiety. Bank on regularly discharging it to not less than 20%, keeping this reserve so you can search for a charge point to “top-up” just enough to safely get home without hitting less than 5% capacity, so you won’t get stranded. Lots of YouTube videos to peruse re optimizing range -e.g. a user drove a Tesla 100D with a 310 mile ratedrange for over 1000 miles by driving at around 20-25 mph. Omit ally inflated tires, weather and ambient temperatures as well as seasonal changes, terrain…. the list goes on. There’s even ways of squeezing better mileage out of ICE cars, with driving techniques. The information is out there for EV’s, the reasearch is being done, and if you don’t seek it, don’t blame the EV industry.
      Conscientious manufacturers, aware of these factors, build them into the EV with better streamlining, better rolling tires etc. Lazy ones just modify an existing model.
      Gotta do your homework, otherwise you’ll end up the Class Dunce!

  27. Anonymous says:

    First lets consider the reason for buying a Ecar; the assumption that your Ecar will save you money, have you done the math based on the cost of living where you live IE electric bills and gas prices ETC. Or are you only buying a Ecar because you hate the greedy rich oil companies and how it’s destroying the planet ETC. ETC. well first… global warming doesn’t exist the way you think it does and second your why do you hate oil companies? because you been told by the liberal media that oil companies are evil, corrupt, polluting and all that jazz? if so, then your reasons for buying a Ecar may be based on completely irrational logic and you need to actually challenge what you’ve been told about big oil and gasoline vehicles. This involves doing your own research without allowing any bias to control what you think when you hear arguments that support big oil. I strongly suggest questioning everything you have been told by the liberal media and activists who tell you that oil is bad, you literally need to question everything you have been told about big oil. Because you have likely only heard arguments from people who hate big oil.

    1. Anonymous says:

      You provided exactly zero information in your rambling.

    2. Anonymous says:

      Mr. Anonymous, what you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.

      1. ecar says:

        so you say anonymous has no basis in his/her comment and idiotic.what is your basis of your rebuttal?

        you gave a zero insane rebuttal

      2. Anonymous says:

        happy gilmour, yeeaaaaahhhhhh!

    3. Anonymous says:

      You are misinformed. I leased my car for 0 at signing and 38 payments over 39 months of 178.99 for 15,000 miles on average per year. That is about $6800.

      I then minus the $2500 California rebate and that put me to $4300 which takes me down to $113 a month. I used to spend about $150 in gas, and since I only charge my new car at free public stations, -$150 puts me at -$37 a month. I don’t need oil changes or smog checks, so thats another -$20 a month to bring me down to -$57 a month.

      So, I will drive this car for 39 months for free, and be $2,223 richer to boot. Forget politics. I’m all about numbers, and they don’t lie.

      1. Anonymous says:

        If I did charge at home, based on PGE EV time of use rate it would cost me about $27 a month, so that would take my net gain down to $30 a month times 38 months, and I would still have drove the car for free and gained $1,140 doing it.

      2. WHC999 says:

        That sounds like a great deal!

        If you live in California.

        I don’t.

      3. Anonymous says:

        So you are a leech. You Take $2500 from the public tax coffers and charge at Free (who pays for these) public stations

      4. Pete says:

        Your California rebate is just for the first year, so your monthly cost calculation drastically increases for the remaining years. And remember that your must keep the car at least 30 months to be eligible for the CA rebate. Your situation is unique in that not everyone can leach of the public free charging stations. If you had to pay the going rate in CA, you would pay way more per mile than gasoline (assuming you are in a comparable size care with good fuel mileage.)

    4. Gary says:

      The point isn’t to love or hate oil companies, but to love or hate the product they sell. Fact: they sell carbon that previously was underground. Fact: we have more carbon in our atmosphere than anytime in recent geologic history. Fact: temperatures basically go up when carbon content in atmosphere goes up. The science is clear…we must stop putting more ancient carbon in our atmosphere to stop climate change.

    5. Anonymous says:

      First let’s consider the reason for NOT buying a Ecar; the assumption that your GASOLINE CAR will save you money, have you done the math based on the cost of living where you live IE electric bills and gas prices ETC. Or are you only buying a GASOLINE CAR because you LOVE the GENEROUS oil companies and how it’s saving the FINANCIAL world, ETC. ETC. well first… global warming doesn’t exist the way YOU think it does, IN THAT IT ISN’T A FIGMENT OF YOUR IMAGINANATION AND DOES IN FACT EXIST, and second, why do you LOVE oil companies? because you been told by the CONSERVATIVE media that oil companies are GOOD, HONEST, RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR POLLUTION and all that jazz? if so, then your reasons for buying GASOLINE CAR may be based on completely irrational logic and you need to actually challenge what you’ve been told about big oil and ELECTRIC CARS. This involves doing your own research without allowing any bias to control what you think when you hear arguments that DISPARAGE big oil. I strongly suggest questioning everything you have been told by the CONSERVATIVE media and FOSSIL FUEL lobbyists who tell you that oil is GOOD, you literally need to question everything you have been told about big oil BY BIG OIL. Because you have likely only heard arguments from people who ARE PAID OR BRAINWASHED BY big oil.

      1. Tara says:

        Lol! Perfect!

  28. Anonymous says:

    The other issue is the battery life and disposal cost to get ride of them. Cost, convenance and size raise safety concerns. Ill stick with my beast. I stand a better shot of walking away from sn accident then those tin cans.

  29. Anonymous says:

    The one glaring problem many seem to conveniently ignore in is lion battery life cycle charging loss..Lion batteries loose capacity with each recharge and have definitive life cycle…accelerated charging even though the battery can safely handle it shortens the cycle recharge ratings and hence capacity…even the best treated within 2 years are looking at 60% in automotive rated use and efficiency drops off faster as you continue further..none of estimates ever seem to factor this well known loss

    1. Dawg says:

      It’s actually not nearly as bad as you imagine. Due to the battery management systems, these batteries can actually perform quite well over many years:

  30. Anonymous says:

    Most people buy a hybrid to save on gas and to feel good about themselves on their carbon footprint. Depending on which Hybrid you buy in comparison to the same gas model, you would have to own it for over a decade (based on 15k miles a year @ 2.50 a gallon,(this fluctuates)) before your actual savings in gas kicked in to offset the difference in price you paid. Even if you got a tax credit from the government(entitlement) it may only drop it to 5 years, which ironically is how long people usually keep a car before getting a new one. As far as the cost to charge the batteries, unless you live in a self sustaining solar/wind/water powered house where do you think that electricity comes from? Yep, those big bad co2 producing plants you are trying to avoid by not putting their products in your tank, well, you use them to charge your battery. By the way, here is a website to a partial list of products we use that derive from fossil fuels. So just to make my point, you aren’t changing a thing but as long as you feel good about yourself that’s all that counts right?

    1. Anonymous says:

      You are not taking into consideration that buying a used Hybrid with very low mileage is not much difference in cost to a gasoline powered vehicle these days. I own a Chevy Volt, purchased fully loaded with 40k miles on it for $16000 from Carmax. It will only need an oil change every 2 years since the gas motor doesnt run very much, the gas engine itself will last much longer than in a normal ICE car as well since it wont run as much. I am paying about $40 a month in Southern California (one of the highest electric rates in the country) to drive over a thousand miles a month. This car has already saved me tons of money over the few months I’ve had it and will continue to. Cost to replace batteries which are warrantied along with the entire charging system/propulsion system for 100k/8yrs is less than the cost of a transmission on a regular ICE car. Since the Volt and most electric cars hold about 30-%40 of the battery capacity unavailable for the driver to use, it is able to extend the life of the battery greatly, people are getting well over 100k miles and some over 200k miles with no noticeable difference in battery capacity.

      1. Anonymous says:

        I’ve owned a Prius since 2004. 12 years later and 168k miles it’s still going strong. When I bought it everyone made comments about the battery life. Amazing none of those people still have the same car they did in 2004. So not only saved on gas, maintenance, but also on not having to buy a new car every 3 years!!

        1. Anonymous says:

          But Prius drivers look like smug tools. You forgot to factor that in to the equation.

          1. Anonymous says:

            I don’t own a Prius, but if I ever see a Prius owner looking smug, it’s sure not because they are fools like you are.

      2. Taswell Smootz says:

        I am all for a cleaner environment and a smaller carbon footprint. Having said that, I believe that the cost of gasoline is kept artificially high to dissuade consumers from buying a larger cars. This is done by the government’s prohibition of oil drilling on public lands and over regulation of the oil refinery industry. CAFE standards that require (under threat of government extortion) that cars get more and more efficient cost lives. This can easily be proven by looking at the fatality rates of large cars vs small cars. More importantly, these laws were written by people who know nothing of what it takes to engineer an automobile. These same legislators hypocritly ride around in limosines and jets at taxpayer expense.

        I would lastly like to reiterate the earlier point of how we generate the majority of our electricity: through burning coal. Just because the carbon monoxide Isn’t belching out of your tailpipe doesn’t mean it isn’t spewing from a smokestake miles away.

      3. Taswell Smootz says:

        I am all for a cleaner environment and a smaller carbon footprint. Having said that, I believe that the cost of gasoline is kept artificially high to dissuade consumers from buying a larger cars. This is done by the government’s prohibition of oil drilling on public lands and over regulation of the oil refinery industry. CAFE standards that require (under threat of government extortion) that cars get more and more efficient cost lives. This can easily be proven by looking at the fatality rates of large cars vs small cars. More importantly, these laws were written by people who know nothing of what it takes to engineer an automobile. These same legislators hypocritly ride around in limosines and jets at taxpayer expense.

        I would lastly like to reiterate the earlier point of how we generate the majority of our electricity: through burning coal. Just because the carbon monoxide Isn’t belching out of your tailpipe doesn’t mean it isn’t spewing from a smokestake miles away.

        1. Anonymous says:

          “I believe that the cost of gasoline is kept artificially high to dissuade consumers from buying a larger cars”

          But actually, our gasoline prices are kept artificially low. In the US, prices are considerably lower than much of the world (outside the middle east, of course). Thanks, no doubt to big oil and their lobbyists.

      4. Geno AZ says:

        I bought a Prius to consume less gas and to pollute less. Cost (within reason) has nothing to do with it.

  31. Rhaman says:

    I see the costs and benefits past the cost of gasoline for the total environmental picture has more elements. First of all, I have solar panels that produce 6,700 kilowatt hours per year. In 2014 I paid out of pocket $5.35 for electricity. The Leaf saves on oil changes, the packaging, the transport cost, etc. associated with extracting, processing and transport of oil and the product. Air filters, fuel filters, coolant, transmission oils and services, etc. Zero. Apart from wiper blades, not much goes into a landfill. I estimate that 20% of electricity the car uses comes from public charging stations. At times, I pay for parking that I would need to pay for anyway, but charging the car is free. Most other times, no parking fee, no charging fee. In the long term, no spark plugs, no fuel injector service, flushes, and other car needs, projected on an eight year cycle, even brings more environmental benefits past the pollution not emitted. Four years and 33,000 miles later, the Leaf’s battery is holding full charge. The worries or concerns as to battery replacement are addressed by the warranty, no charge to the customer. Since the car is a Point A to Point A, meaning a source of power, only those living in cities with fast charging, either free or paid with a fee, can use a car for city driving without limits. My city has seven DC Fast Chargers and only one location charges a $2.00 per hour parking fee. Heaven. Nirvana. All for clean air, less landfill and a host of resources not used.

    1. ecar says:

      someone is paying for electricity @ the charging station. you cannot create electricity from a charging station

      hopefully there will be better technology sooner than later to drive cost down

  32. Anonymous says:

    in the end,

    it’s how much you paid for the car and how much it costs to maintain it, plus fuel/electricity costs.
    There’s the thing that electric cars are more expensive and need battery replacement. So in the end you may not save anything really.

    1. Anonymous says:

      Chevrolet was offering a $139 a month for any leases 36 months, which adds up to $5004. if You live in California, for a 3 year lease you get a $2500 rebate, and a $3000 rebate if you live in the San Joaquin valley, adding up to $5500 in rebates. I leased during the promotion and applied for the rebate, and was essentially paid $496 to lease it for 36 months. Within 3 years, the only maintenance that will be done are a couple tire rotations, and wiper fluid replacement. Which are all free. The car has almost no maintenance. It also doesn’t affect the electricity bill at all. With it charging all day when I’m home, doing all other normal activities, I’m getting about 20-21 KWH of electricity consumption per day, about $3 per day, including the car charging about 20-25 miles worth on the 120V outlet. The most expensive thing about this vehicle is the insurance. So really, since the monthly payments are taken care of by the rebates, the electricity is next to nothing even with it plugged in all day, all i’m paying for is insurance. So you may want to reevaluate your claim.

  33. Jerry says:

    just install 4KW solar panel from solar city. they offer 30 years $0 down financing at 4.2%.
    30 years warranty for all the parts.
    you pay what the solar panel produce by each KW. not a fix loan payment.
    I pay the same amount as I pay for the electric company, but the energy is 100% clean.

    planing to add more solar panel when I buy a EV in the future.

    1. Anonymous says:

      Install the solar panel where?

    2. dpkraft says:

      So where does one install a panel? It would look funny towing a trailer with a panel on it just to charge a car! Also, 4.2% interest really cuts into the savings…. I’ll just buy a Hybrid and drive…

      1. Anonymous says:

        elctricity is a fungible commodity, so it does not matter one iota if the electricity that the solar panel generates is not the same electricity that is used to charge the electric car.

  34. Rebecca says:

    Actually the electric vehicle use can extend the energy sources like electric or hydrogen or natural gas wind etc. so they will make you expense less and you will save some bucks from it. But yes the cost will be more so you should be prepared for that

  35. redneckx says:

    I want to know how much it would cost to charge an all electric car at your own home using just a normal current like for appliances.


    1. Anonymous says:

      It depends on your electric rates and how far you drive, (you won’t necessarily empty the battery every day).

      The average EV uses about 300 watts in the summer and 400 watts in the winter per mile. That means a 10 mile drive will use about 3kW to 4kW. Multiply that by how far you drive per year and your electric rate and you’ll know your cost.

      For example at $0.12 per kW, 10 miles would cost between $0.36 and $0.48. For comparison a gas car at $3 per gallon which gets 30 mpg would cost $1 to go the same distance.

      The cost of electricity doesn’t change if you charge at 110v or 240v this only affects how *fast* you charge (3.3kW charge will charge at ~ 10 miles of range per hour, 6.6kW at ~20 miles of range per hour).

      Think of your water bill, you pay for the amount of water you use, not how fast you use it.

    2. Anonymous says:

      my leaf is about $2 to charge empty to full. about 70 miles range.

    3. Anonymous says:

      Live in NJ, the utility company is PS&G. The electricity is about $0.19/kwh.
      My volt consume 29kwh/100mile in June, or 5.5 cents/mile. The range in my traffic condition is about 43 miles per charge. I never need gas in my daily commute.

      On another side, the cheapest local gas is about $2.3/gal (I always find cheap source, like Costco) . With my Altima hybrid, 34mile/gal, or 6.8 cents/mile.

      Not save much in NJ.

      There is EV friendly plan, which is $0.22 during peak hours (7:00AM to 9:00PM), and $0.11 off peak. However, the management fee for the plan is $11 more than the normal plan. The saving cannot compensate the extra charge.

    4. Anonymous says:

      2014 Mercedes B-class. 28KWH battery, PSE&G in NJ charges approx. $0.15 per KWh. Each charge will yield 62 miles in summer and 52 miles in winter. Cost per charge is about $4.2 (28*0.15). So the cost per mile for this EV is 4.2/52 = $0.08. A Camry claims 25 city and 35 mpg highway, let’s assume it gets 30 mpg on average. Regular gas in Jan 2016 is $1.8/gallon. Cost per mile for the Camry is $0.06. Mercedes required $1000 mandatory maint. each year for a lease EV. So the “cost savings” just ain’t there!

  36. Electric vehicles are the future of auto industry and after reading this blog I am fully satisfied and clear that in coming days people will surely opt for EV’s as these are far better than fuel cars. Electric vehicle benefits weigh more than fuel cars as it has low maintenance and protect our environment by turning the city into green city where you can see no pollution and live peacefully. Thanks for the post. Truly, it was a nice read.

    1. Anonymous says:

      What about the gas hybrids use? And the coal used to make electricity

      1. Dick says:

        Comparison of fossil fuel needed to supply the electrical energy necessary to drive 100 miles in an electric car that used 34KWh per 100 miles.

        “To express the efficiency of a generator or power plant as a percentage, divide the equivalent Btu content of a kWh of electricity (which is 3,412 Btu) by the heat rate. For example, if the heat rate is 10,500 Btu, the efficiency is 33%. If the heat rate is 7,500 Btu, the efficiency is 45%.”

        The Average Operating Heat Rate for Coal in 2014 was 10428 Btu/KWh and for Petroleum was 10814Btu/KWh. So the efficiency of electricity generation from coal was 10428/3412 = 32.7% and the efficiency of electrical generation.

        from petroleum was 10814/3412 = 31.6%. (This does not include losses due to transmission and conversion to energy stored in the car battery).

        The energy content of petroleum is 34.2 MJ/L which is 36.1 KWh/gal. Since the efficiency of conversion of petroleum to electricity is 31.6%, one gallon of petroleum produces only 36.1 * 31.6% = 11.4 KWh of electrical energy. To produce the 34 KWh that is necessary to drive an electric car 100 miles (
        ) would require 34KWhr/11.4KWh/gal = 3 gal. Both our Prius and our VW would go 120-150 miles on 3 gal of petroleum.

        Moreover, the electric vehicle using 3 gal of petroleum at the power plant would generate as much pollution as a gas vehicle that gets 33 MPG.

        I find these calculations troubling and I hope someone can find an error!

        Dick Roth

        1. Anonymous says:

          Also, the fossil fuel electric plant cannot operate viably if it only produces electricity for electric cars. It has to produce much more electricity than that so it ends up still putting out the same amount of pollution. Nothing is gained.

    2. watty says:

      And were is that energy being produced to charge your car batteries?? Lets stop kidding ourselves utilities are looking for growth every quarter. They wont spring for covering the country with solar panels to charge millions of cars ! and neither will you. By putting it in the utilities hands we run the risk of quadrupling the coal burning “clean coal or otherwise” . Does anybody have numbers on what the utility will have to ramp up to charge all our “private” transportation??

  37. With technology development we have various kinds of luxury and hybrid cars which consist of several kinds of new innovative and unique features. But now days we have found that people are giving more preference to hybrid luxury cars instead of normal cars. But it is quite expensive to maintain a hybrid car and especially in terms of charging the car we need to visit different charging stations; for which we spend a little amount of penny. As due to the number of electric cars increases simultaneously the percentage of electric charging stations are also increases.

    1. Anonymous says:

      how much does it cost to charge your car

  38. Robert Plantz says:

    I’m very surprised that someone who “is a commercial property manager and restaurant owner” would assert that the savings from cutting costs in one area cannot be used in another area. If I save money by installing LED lighting in my home, I can spend that savings on gasoline for my car. He also ignores the opportunity costs of investing my capital in LED lighting.

    Reminds me of a neighbor who spent $20k for solar panels and now asserts that his electricity is free. No, he simply prepaid for about 10 – 15 years of electricity. After that, the cost will be greatly reduced.

    We each need to do our own analysis based on our particular situation. I have an all electric (including well pump) home in the San Francisco area. I always get at least into PG&E’s third tier, where electricity costs $0.27/kWh. Adding an EV would always take me into tier 3 — $0.32/kWh. Time of use metering makes things worse because the rates for my home use would go way up. And no, I will not restrict all my cooking, showers, room heating, etc., to 11PM – 7AM! So assuming I could get 3.5 miles/kWh, EV power would cost me in the order of $0.10/mile. The lifelong (137k miles) mileage of my 2005 Prius is 48.6mpg. The break-even point for me is gas costing $4.86/gal. And this does not take into account the premium cost of an EV.

    1. ricegf says:

      I certainly agree that “we each need to do our own analysis based on our particular situation”. Your electricity costs at 32 cents per kWh are surprisingly high in San Francisco – my cost in Texas right now is only 7.5 cents per kWh, less than a quarter of yours!

      Of course, the Prius was one of the first popular full hybrid electric mid-size cars on the market, so you’ve already chosen the benefit of electric technology. That gets you almost halfway there, even without a plug.

      With our cheap electricity, replacing my current 20 mpg Mustang with a Leaf make a great deal of financial sense for us. One size simply doesn’t fit all.

    2. Anonymous says:

      I feel that you are attacking rather than just making a rashional point. Some of what you say is true like “We each need to do our own analysis based on our particular situation.” but regarding your neighbor depending on how many kWhs he’s bringing in from his solar panels he could be using free electricity or may even be making money off of his solar investment. It’s entirely possible to buy enough solar panels to turn a profit off of them within as little as 5 years or less. I’m sure that’s not the case with your neighbor though. Regarding your electric bill going up to the next tier some electric companies have incentives that if you purchase or lease an EV for 3+ years then they’ll bring you down a tier so you’ll still be paying the same amount per kWh as you already are. When I leased my Chevy Spark EV the government had a rebate that gave me $2,500.00 which payed me back for my down payment. Because of where I live in CA I have not had to pay a single penny to charge my car in the 3 months 4,500 miles that I have driven it since there are so many free charging stations. As for the “higher cost” of the vehicle that’s not true because my lease is only $150 a month with ALL the options (including 30 minute SAE Combo charging port) and 1,500 miles a year which is cheaper than most of the leases I’ve seen for comparable gas vehicles with lower mileage allowance especially since they don’t get their down payment back like I did. You need to do a little more homework before posting next time.

      1. russ says:

        While you may very well have all those features in California, that DOES NOT mean the rest of the states have them. Nor does it mean that MOST of the states have them. The people who live in California have a realproblem understanding that their state is different than the other 49 states. If you have “free charging stations” there, good for you. Thre are no “free” anything in Florida or Michigan or any of the states between. As for the “rebate”, you have to remember that the federal tax rebate is only good for specific vehicles, not a general rebate for any EV. The vehicles must meet certain sales quotas in order to qualify. And again, your using California’s rules as though they apply across the entire country when you indicate that an individual can “make a profit” off of the solar panels installed. In many states, there are rules AGAINST any entity other than a Regulated Utility selling power at all. So I repeat, Do Your own homework.

    3. Jeff Carlton says:

      Here in Nevada when I switched to time of use rates the whole ‘tier’ system was replaced with flat time of use rates. I also got NV Energy’s Electric Car rate for all electricity consumed from 10 pm to 6 am. The base rate for this is about 5.7 cents per kWh year round but with the taxes, and other charges, and with the 100% renewable energy fee I voluntarily tack-on (about 4 cents per kWh, taxes figured-in) I pay just over 10 cents per kWh during that time.

      Time of use pricing saves me money overall. I do consciously avoid electric use in the summer (July through September) during our ‘Peak’ rate times (Monday to Friday, 1pm to 6 pm) when the base cost per kWh charge becomes exorbitant. Because I like to save money I also work to shift heavy electrical use away from the summertime mid-peak rate times which hug the peak rate times by 3-hours either side. The mid-peak base rate is half the peak time rate, but still more than triple the standard rate for the rest of the day and night. During the other 9 months of the year peak rates hardly factor in, adding less than 2 cents to the standard base electric rate per kWh, so electric use adjustments are hardly necessary. Being the cheapo that I am, though, I still like to save washing machine loads, showering when I can, and longer stove-use/bulk cook ahead projects till Electric Car rate times. Why not save money when I can?

    4. Marc Tucker says:

      It’s about saving the environment and the world. We shouldn’t be such selfish beings and realize there is a bigger picture to the world than our own pointless day to day existence! Save the planet!

      1. Ken G says:

        Aside from the cost of power verses gasoline and fluctuating rates on each, is anyone taking depreciation into account. That “new” Leaf, with the price of gasoline at 2.00 a gallon, is dropping in value pretty quickly. Compare it to the cost of a Versa (gas) and the depreciation on the Versa happens at a slower rate. That being said, buying a Leaf in the used market is the better deal.

      2. Joe Black, Sr. says:

        And how much oil was used in the production of those batteries and motors? No doubt that driving an electric car helps some, but until the prices come down and the charging stations are available, it’s still a novelty. The environmental impact of all of those dead batteries and the recycling is a big hurdle to get over. But, I am glad that there are people like you that will sacrifice other things to spend more of their hard earned money to protect the environment than they should. Someone has to pay for it, why shouldn’t it be you. But all of the extra electricity being used to manufacture and charge these machines will probably make my rates go up. If you really want to save the environment, get a horse!

      3. JD says:

        Some people don’t have the money to save the world. Those people are called the majority or poor people. If you have so much money, then yes, stop being selfish and buy a poor person a Prius. Oh, but wait, a lot of the working class also have kids and car pool with other moms, who don’t have time to stop and charge a car. Have fun shoving all those kids and their school backpacks into a Prius. Judging people without knowing their circumstances is a little messed up.

      4. Anonymous says:

        I fart in my gas tank when i can hold it works well and i feel good about my self saving the world then i look up into the sky and see Al Gore flying in his personal jet then i feel sad

  39. Anonymous says:

    By the reasoning in the last paragraph, you could also quit eating and completely eliminate your transportation costs!

    1. Fina says:

      If you quit eating out. Sure. ; a

  40. Anonymous says:

    Another thing to think about is the efficiency of your car. The first example said 24 mpg but your costs will be different if you already drive a gas efficient car the gets 35+mpg.

  41. Inquisitor says:

    You might want to mention the battery chemistry efficiency (power out / power in). It takes more energy to charge a battery than you get out of it. For some battery chemistries it is nearly half. Fortunately lithium batteries are pretty good… around 0.80. So… in the real world, the cost to charge your car (above example) is really $540/0.80 = $675/year.

    Leaf usage rate: L = 4.3 miles/kWH
    Battery efficiency: E = 0.8
    Power rate: P = 0.082 $ / kWH
    Gas price: G = $1.99 / gal

    Effective mpg = L * E * G / P = 83 mpg

    Between the low price for gas and electricity I have in my area, I’m not getting near the rate claimed by Nissan, but it’s still 4x better than my next best car.

  42. Cody says:

    I took these calculations into consideration of how much it costs to go electric on a short level, basicly it costs $3.60 to go 100 miles in an electric car and $14.50 to go 100 in a 24mpg car! much cheaper in electric

  43. Anonymous says:

    “Another great thing about electric cars is that you can easily reduce your electric bill by $40 to $50 per month just by being more efficient, and therefore completely eliminate your transportation fuel cost!…Simply by turning unnecessary lighting off at your home, you can drastically reduce or completely eliminate your annual transportation fuel cost.”

    Um, sure, if you believe in perpetual motion machines, then YES, you can completely “eliminate” any fuel cost of your electric car.

    Meanwhile, back in the physical universe in which the rest of us live…Even if you completely ELIMINATE (per the dictionary definition of the word, not the article’s new and unconventional definition of the word) all usage of light bulbs and other electrical items in your home and only use oil lamps for lighting like Abraham Lincoln, the only way you will ELIMINATE the cost of electricity to charge your electric vehicle is if you NEVER CHARGE your electric vehicle, or if you ONLY charge it at locations other than your home, or if you surreptitiously run an electrical cable to your neighbor’s house and steal his electricity. But in the universe of reality, the truth is that EVERY time you charge your electric vehicle at your residence, the electrical company will charge you for that electricity. Sorry, this cost CANNOT be eliminated, and the only way it can be reduced is by recharging your electric vehicle less.

    “Another great thing about electric cars is that you can easily reduce your electric bill by $40 to $50 per month just by being more efficient, and therefore completely eliminate your transportation fuel cost!”

    So what I hear you saying is that if you buy a gas car, you CANNOT reduce your electric bill by the same amount by being more efficient. What a STUPID CLAIM that has NOTHING to do WHATSOEVER with ELECTRIC CARS!

    What a useless article. Such misinformation is a mis-service to electric vehicle technology.

    1. Anonymous says:

      This cost can be eliminated if ones home were equipped with solar panels. Your electricity would come from the panels and you could use this to charge your car which can eliminate your electric bill. Boom

      1. Anonymous says:

        Solar panels have a monthly cost as well. Unless you have the cash to pay for them. So how does that factor into your 1600 a year savings?

        1. Anonymous says:

          actually they are right, typically they are intended for farm or other rural business owners,
          I don’t remember exact figures but I think they are around 200,000 with intall, the government is supposed to kick back a portion and utility company is supposed to kick back a portion, but you still have to front the cost, any apply for the credits once installed, I’ve never heard of a per month charge to have them, but I do know if your not using what energy you create the utility company pays you, and if you burn more then what you create then utility co. pays you, you still have to have your utility because theres times that your not going to be able to collect enough energy to sustain yourself, so bacicly your running meter backwards when your producing more then your usage, and your boxes are set up to switch back and forth between powers, accordingly, automaticly, my family are farmers and we had them installed and that’s how I know, but I don’t know the exact figures off hand, by the time everything is said and done, but once installed theroredicly in time your cost ends up paying for itself

          1. Anonymous says:

            correction if your burning more energy then what your panels are producing then you have to pay utility company what you used

          2. energetic says:

            solar companies ask prior to their 100% free install if you average $125 mo. elec bill . Then they size your roof sq. footage and then w/that figured they double the total number of panels you need and the 50% [remember they double the panels for what you require] the house doesnt use the solar co. sells it back to your local electric co. provider and they HAVE to buy it from you for same cost they would normally charge you to supply your power meaning you will be benefiting as your monthly charge for the energy the panels provide costs you a small fraction in the cost to you . Ingenious idea that works great. After your signed 20 yr. contract runs it course solar co. comes to you w/ 3 options re: THEIR equipment. !. they’ll upgrade all the system w/latest and greatest and have you sign another 20 yr. contract or 2.they’ll sell you the aged system you have for peanuts or 3. they’ll remove the system and put you back on city power. Its up to you . 75% accept another 20 yr. deal, keep pluggin’ away.
            Theres no better deal ,PERIOD. So re: “corrections” post that IS correct but around here they only furnish free system IF you’ll agree to their format where you have twice the power you can use , makes great sense to me and was going to do it w/solar city here in Dallas but sold my house .

      2. JimH says:

        BOOM! Really? What, did your Momma buy those panels for you so you aren’t out of pocket at all? I like Solar, but the assertion that the energy from them is free does not compute.

        1. Otto Sayas says:

          My solar array is calculated to break even at seven years, three months. Based on five years actual data in Portland, Oregon. Math trolls contribute nothing. Be a part of the solution.

        2. "Electric Bill" (Bill Dale) says:

          JimH: I suggest you not embarrass yourself by talking about what you do not know… I, have no idea how you even ended up, on this Website.

          Go to YouTube. .. you will find dozens of videos showing how Saudi Arabia has been installing thousand of acres of solar panels
          in their country every year rather than using their own fossil fuels, which are the cheapest on the planet— so if the Saudis save money using, solar to go carbon-free, everyone else should take that as proof that we should be doingcthe, same thing, which is, actually the case in places such as here in
          California, where every year a, larger percentage of our electricity comes from, solar.

          Solar panels used to cost nearly $100./ per watt in the early seventies; the cost has dropped steadily ever since. In the last five years it has plummeted in cost and continues to get cheaper and more efficient. Today, solar panels only costs about a nickel a watt and is not the cheapest source of energy available, cheaper than fossil fuels, nuclear, hydro, etc.

          There are presently about a million, EVs on the road throughout the world, and the numbers are increasing dramatically now tjat, Tesla, has a new “Gigafactory near Reno, NV,that is slashing the cost of EV battery packs, which is the main cost of an EV. EV dales are now exploding,, with the Tesla Model 3, the Chevy Bolt, and others.

    2. Anonymous says:

      relax ace. by trying to appear intelligent by being overly semantic, you look like an idiot. Just take the spirit of the article for what it is>

    3. Anonymous says:

      Thank you!!!

      1. Anonymous says:

        your welcome

    4. Anonymous says:

      honestly I don’t think that’s what they were saying I think they were compairing the cost of driving an electric car to driving a gas powered car, maybe there are electric credits by converting to an electric car, I know you do drop electric bill 50% by going led, I know because I took a 200.00 electric bill down to 16.00 no I don’t have an electric car, but I know you can get 7500 a year back for having one, so that by itself would iliminate my gasoline or electric bill, period, so I know just what they are saying even if they didn’t explain it in terms everyone as a whole understands,

      1. MetaI says:

        “””but I know you can get 7500 a year back for having one”””
        But … but … you have to pay that 7500 first before getting it back.
        It’s like getting a “tax refund”: you get back what you already paid (yes, I know there are
        exceptions … single-parent households with children, etc). Your tax refund is not money
        from the government … it’s a refund of your overpayment.
        You don’t get anything for free.

        Electric cars are way too expensive. And they use cheap parts, so in reality they’d
        be even more expensive if they had used decent parts (good tires, etc).
        Insurance of EV is also more expensive when compared to similarly valued cars.
        Replacing the front headlights of a Prius could cost $1000 (search Google for this).

        Of course everyone has to do their own analysis according to their lifestyle.
        In doing so, consider the total cost of ownership: insurance, trade-in value, etc.
        In 5 years, your Leaf would be worth only 15%, while a Nissan Sentra similarly equipped
        would be 36%-40%. What would compel someone to buy a 5-yr old Leaf when there are
        newer technologies?

        Do your own case analysis.
        Texas, Nevada, and other places have cheap electricity, for example. Or how much
        you drive in a year. Many articles say you’d break even if you drive 60,000 miles/year,
        or gas was $10/gallon, etc.

        1. Jeff Carlton says:

          (#)Yes I got a good deal, but even better ones are periodically popping-up on CarGurus, …
          So, when my 2-year LEAF lease ran out its residual value was comparatively too high vs used LEAF’s…
          After bit of searching over a 3-week period I moved on a deal in Fremont, CA: A 2013 LEAF SV (6.6 kW charger) with the Level 3 DC Charge Port/LED Headlight package. It was listed for $12,500, which I accepted without bargaining, and had 12,354 miles on it. It is totally clean appearance wise. The battery capacity is like new: it charges to 100% and hasn’t lost any bars thus far.

          (#)I drove it 270 miles home to Reno using free public charging stations the whole way. It is a bit of a time commitment (I go on walks, read, or sometimes shop) but since getting it home I am charging it for free about 80% of the time at public level 2 charging stations. No, I did not get the federal tax rebate but I also avoided the new car depreciation losses which can be especially steep for electric cars, in part due to the federal rebate.

          (#)Nissan really pushed LEAF leases to help pump their monthly sales numbers up. It helped me on my first LEAF since the dealership subtracts the full $7500 tax rebate from the car price, and I might not have qualified for the full rebate income-wise. Nissan dealer’s push for LEAF customers to lease, not buy, is helping used LEAF buyers now. The pre-owned car market is being flooded with gently used post-lease LEAF’s causing dealerships to sell them several thousand dollars below book value. If you are willing to be a second owner, there are very reasonably priced LEAF’s out there. My advice is that you look for 2013 or newer SV or SL models so you guarantee the 6.6 kW charger to save time on level 2 charging, It is nice if you also find one with the level 3 charge port/LED headlight package also to increase night driving efficiency and to further save time on charging if you live in an area, or will road trip through a region, that has public CHAdeMO chargers.

          (#)LEAF owner’s love their cars. LEAF’s score very high on the owner satisfaction measures. Most LEAF owner’s replace expired LEAF leases with the current year’s LEAF. When I have driven this car for 4-5 years I plan on replacing it with another post-lease LEAF, with the next generation LEAF’s improved range. Or I might possibly upgrade even further to a post-lease Tesla Generation 3 vehicle. Don’t rule out electric cars with the “they are too overpriced/not affordable” argument. Explore the pre-owned market first!

          1. Anonymous says:

            Thanks for the information very informative .

          2. Anonymous says:

            Try eBay, too. Leafs sell for 9000 now. 2015-09-10

    5. Logical EV driver says:

      “Are you Kidding” is one of few rational voices on this thread. And has saved me considerable time replying with a lengthy retort. Hey, if I use my chainsaw less around the backyard, does that eliminate my transportation cost via my ICE vehicle? That’s the same flawed logic used by the author. When people defend this swiss cheese argument they damage their own credibility.

  44. Anonymous says:

    “sales-weighted average fuel economy of all new vehicles sold in the United States in 2013 was 24.8 mpg” includes all vehicles including heavy duty utility trucks, etc. and does not compare to the small electric cars sold. Therefore you are not making parallel comparisons. You should compare only small light-weight gas cars to electric cars.
    People who drive electric cars could be despised, because right now one of those electric car owners is stealing my electricity!!!! They have plugged into my outdoor plug without permission. This is making me very nervous because this plug is not a dedicated plug and could in fact cause my breaker to flip or perhaps even cause other damage. I just read on the site that there are special requirements for in-home charging stations.
    So the bottom line is, recharge at your home. Do not drive your car to someone’s house and expect to charge at their house. Electric cars may have good applications but do not expect other people to pay for your charges.

    1. Anonymous says:

      If they are stealing anything, call the police or unplug them. Theft has nothing to do with electric cars

    2. Anonymous says:

      If you had full gas tank laying around on your front yard, I would come fill up my truck!

    3. "Electric Bill" (Bill Dale) says:

      You, sir, are a full-blown. ANONYMOUS COWARD TROLL who has no business even being on this website! Charles Koch has budgeted ten million dollars a year to trying to plant deceptive commrnts, such as yours to try to discourage and slander EV drivers and, discourage buying and, driving EVs.

      Go crawl back under your rock and stop trying to throw stumbling blocks in the path of EVs!

      Anyone visiting me with an EV would be more than welcome to charge up from my EV charge port… and that is total nonsense to try to claim an EV could do anything to damage a home’s electrical system! You are incredibly desperate, trying to spread such malicious lies .. you’re busted! That is why you don’t post your real name with your comment!!!


      1. Deborah says:

        Here, here! I agree. I’m trying to educate myself about EVs. I don’t need malicious talk in this blog.

    4. Fina says:

      You must work for Ford or dodge lol

  45. JOHN T SHEA says:

    Luckily, no one has to buy an electric car to make the savings described in the last paragraph.

    1. "Electric Bill" (Bill Dale) says:

      John T. Shea: buying an EV is almost ALWAYS a better deal regardless. When factoring oil changes, tune-ups, smog tests, repairs needed to, pass smog (which from personal experience can run into thousands of dollars), tyranny service, radiator coolant, brake service (which can amount to almost nothing on an, EV even after ten years due to the effect of “regen” braking, etc., can make an, EV a, much better deal.

      The EPA mog ratings are quite skewed, not reflecting true real-world costs especially in urban, areas such as Los Angeles, where many dozens of hours per year can be spent idling in, heavy traffic: “idling” is, something EVs NEVER have to, do, and those idling episodes are never considered when calculating EPA efficiencies.

      Buying “high MPG” ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) cars is always penny wise, pound foolish.

  46. Sal Cameli says:

    My LEAF just turned 1 year old and I’ve driven 12,348 miles and spent $370.00 in Electricity. That comes out to just around 3 cents per mile. In my old Gas car I would have spent around $1850. So almost 5X cheaper.

    In Maintenance I’ve spent $39 which consisted of (1) Tire Rotation Service and (3) Gallons of wiper fluid.

    1. Paula Harper says:

      So, you’ve had your Leaf for a year. What did the dealership tell you that the battery life was? How much to replace the battery when it dies?

      How many miles do you get on a charge?

      You sound happy with your purchase. We are looking at the 2015 or 16. I’d like a few years of history before I buy one. We purchase our cars and therefore are very cautious about what we buy.

      Thanks for your feedback!


      1. Anonymous says:

        Not sure about the rumors yet but the ’16 model Leaf might get a distance boost they are talking about upping the battery so you can get 150+ miles out of it. I own a ’12 and I do love it but they are getting better with the technology so I say get the best one you can. Battery shouldn’t be a concern they are warrantied now for 100,000 miles to stay above 70% capacity so only a 30% capacity loss over 100,000 miles and they just came out with the replacement cost in case you want a new 100% battery, its 5500 dollars. Steep but not out of the question and nissan will finance it at a low rate or thats what they say.

        1. Anonymous says:

          Electric car technology, especially battery technology, is changing rapidly so the best thing to do is to lease a Leaf instead of buying one. I just leased a base model “S” (I don’t need leather seats and a Nav package for a car that will be used mainly locally) with the quick charging package and the lease cost per month is only $205. Furthermore, Nissan added an “EV-charge” card which gives me two years of free charging at certain charging networks. Three of the charging networks are in my area and have many level 2 (220v) and Fast Chargers (440v). My lease is for 2 years so that I can take advantage of the newer electric technology when it is up.

          1. Anonymous says:

            I lease my 2015 Leaf S for $139 per month. I had to trade in my 10 year old Nissan Sentra (28mpg) car (they gave me $2k for it) and put 3k down to get that lease rate. Financial picture is that I spend much less to drive the car but of course driving the car into the ground would have been cheaper.

            I get 10 cents per kw in Utah, and charge only 1/3 of the time at my home. 2/3 of the time it is at work (they get 5 cents per kw, industrial rate) or free at a Nissan dealership within 1/2 mile of my work. So, total cost in energy for me per year (1,000 miles per month) is $120.00! Yes, if I spread out the 3k down payment over the 3 year lease, and add the $139 per month payments I am paying about $2500 per year to drive. At the end of the 3 years I can buy the Leaf for ~ 10k. I may do so for my teenager who will be driving then.

            Old Nissan leaf would have been $900 – $1500 per year (depending on gas costs, 900 being the current super low price). ~100 oil changes plus about $500 per year in repairs (it was 10 years old and stuff was breaking down). So, yes, keeping the old car was cheaper, but not by too much if gas goes up to prior rates.

            I wanted to vote w/ my wallet…put money into innovation, not same old petroleum tycoons. If you’re going to buy a new car anyway, why not change things up a little and go for electric? It sure is fun to know that I spend less than 1 cent per mile (strictly considering fuel costs) to drive-due to freebie charging.

            I think that is is likely that in 20-30 years 1/2 of all cars will be alternate fuel, electric being my guess for the majority. But, who knows, maybe I’ll be wrong. But, what will happen when batteries give 5X more charge for the weight and solar panels are 5X cheaper for your home? It’ll be a 100 lb battery pack instead of the 550lb the Leaf requires now.

          2. Anonymous says:

            I meant “Financial picture is that….much less to drive the car (new Leaf) but of course driving the (old) car would have been cheaper…

          3. Anonymous says:

            sorry, I also have to specify that total cost is only $120 per YEAR. I hope my intent is clear. New electric car is not necessarily cheaper than keeping an old car that is reasonably reliable. But, it is a step into the future for me. I’d rather pay for new technology than just shunt thousands into oil, which is not new tech.

      2. zack says:

        What ridiculous nonsense. Hello? Depreciation. One of the least compelling reasons to buy an electric car is financial. you’ll more than lose out in depreciation than you ever save in gas. Buy it because it’s cool, or cute or the right color or you want to think better of yourself than the Prius drivers ( a fantasy that can’t be achieved). But don’t do it on financial grounds. Because the the upfront cost difference is enormous and the resale value is crap.

        I’ve got 44,000 miles on my Leaf. You can reliably drive 80 miles on a charge (you’ll never see 100 if you drive like normal people do). That’s 40 from your house and back, if no great elevation change, and you stay under 60mph. If you have to do that twice in one day, realize the car has to be parked and charged for a few hours somewhere. This is a severe limitation you have to accept (you cannot add 300 miles of range in 5 minutes like with a gas car). That means you can travel at a 10 to one ratio, 10 miles driven to 1 every one hour charging at 240V.

        Also realize my 1000 miles a month added 11 kwh per day to my home electric usage, a number that in many places will put you up into the second or third tier pricing scheme from your utility. I think of it as just under $5/100 miles driven. So yes you save about $400 a year compared to similar mileage in a Versa or Mazda 2. But their MSRP is $15,000.

        Compare that to the Leaf’s MSRP at $34,000. Yes tax credits netted to $26,000 but less than 4 years later I’ve lost $15,000 in depreciation. That’s the entire cost of a brand new car. A similar Versa depreciated around 50% but that’s $7500 in that same period, That alone should squelch the financial argument, but consider further.

        The entire battery pack in my 2011 Leaf was replaced under warranty at 37,500 miles (consider the enviro cost of that). Not for any kind of failure, just the predictable decay through regular usage, (oh, and get used to much less range, 60-65 miles for that last year as you wait for it to drop to the magic 9 bar number to qualify for the repair.) That warranty expires at 60,000 miles so I won’t get another free pack. Resale value at 8 years and 75,000 miles will be substantially less than an equivalent gas car. I think nearly worthless, because buying a new battery pack will equal or exceed the value of the car.

        Nobody shops for an eight year old Versa expecting to install a new engine and transmission the next day.

        So I can’t imagine the market demand will be very high for the 8 year old Leaf with 60 miles of range in it. Resale prices will have to reflect that reality.

        The major difference is that the range in the Versa doesn’t decay with age. It costs thousands less to buy initially, and it will likely keep somebody in transport well out past 175,000 miles.

        1. Brandon Thompson says:

          Thank you for breaking that down. An eye opener for sure. I’m glad here’s people who can run numbers like you and have it in plain English. Doesn’t look like electric vehicles have “matured” yet but given another five to ten years I think we’ll be there.
          I know the EV will do to gas stations what cell phones did to land lines or pay phones one day. Today or tomorrow won’t be the day. However I see great promise EV holds. But right now I equate it to the very first Apple iPhone that came out. Just a start.

          1. Tony says:

            I seriously doubt we are only 5 years away from battery energy density matching gasoline or diesel. And we will NEVER be able to fully recharge a battery in the time it takes to pump a tank of fuel.

            EVs will always be a niche commuter-only application. They will always be the “second” car. This is not a bad thing but it means that EVs will never really be able to mature into a complete travel solution.

            I am glad the OP pointed out all the hidden costs of EVs. My ’08 civic needed a new battery under warranty at just under 100k miles. We will get rid of the car before the new pack goes bad. If it were a gas engine SI model, then we could have kept the car for maybe another 100k miles beyond what we will keep this car. And the SI would have been cheaper to buy (certified used car). So even hybrids are not actually cost effective, but at least you are not limited in driving range.

            Unfortunately the bottom line is that the energy density and speed of “recharge” of petroleum fuels may be impossible to beat. The only way to win will be to change the playing field, maybe by having long distance rail available to everyone everywhere and EV autonomous vehicles available everywhere operating on an “Uber” type plan for the short distance hops at for the last 10-20 miles.

          2. John Downey says:

            My experience has been so much different. I recently bought a pre-owned 2013 with 23,000 miles for $9,500. Depreciation won’t be much going forward. It still has 12 bars battery and by many reports they’ve gone to over 100,000 miles before losing it’s first capacity bar. Electricity costs $.06 cents per KWH for me, and getting a range of 87 miles, which works out to about just $1.5 per 100 miles, versus the $5 you mention. (22 KWH available in 2013 Leaf 24-KWH x $.06 = $1.32 per 87 miles)
            (I left out correction for 95% charging efficiency because we had the heat on for our range test and had 3 people in the car). The pre-owned price was almost the same as buying a similar gas car but the operating costs are much smaller. So, actually you can buy an electric car and save money overall versus buying a gas vehicle.

        2. Vito Carabetta says:

          Depreciation, well what to do about that? Did you ever think of buying a used one like I did. I bought a Mitsubishi I-MiEV, admittedly ugly as sin, that had only 1,400 miles on it, and it was still under warranty at two years of age. $9,700 out the door! I thank you all for having gone off after whatever tax incentives you may have saved when you bought them new.

      3. Jeff Carlton says:

        Good deals on used LEAF’s, and free charging change the Economic Equations:

        (#)Yes I got a good deal, but even better ones are periodically popping-up on CarGurus. When my 2-year LEAF lease ran out its residual value was comparatively too high vs the cost of many used LEAF’s. I moved on a deal in Fremont, CA: A 2013 LEAF SV (6.6 kW charger) with the Level 3 DC Charge Port/LED Headlight package. It was listed for $12,500, which I accepted without bargaining, and had 12,354 miles on it. It is totally clean appearance-wise. The battery capacity is like new: it charges to 100% and hasn’t lost any bars thus far. (#)I drove it 270 miles home to Reno using free public charging stations the whole way. It is a bit of a time commitment (I go on walks, read, or sometimes shop) but since getting it home I am charging it for free about 80% of the time at public level 2 charging stations. No, I did not get the federal tax rebate but I also avoided the new car depreciation losses which can be especially steep for electric cars, in part due to the federal rebate. (#)Nissan really pushed LEAF leases to help pump-up their monthly sales numbers. Leasing helped me on my first LEAF since the dealership subtracts the full $7500 tax rebate from the car price, and I might not have qualified for the full rebate income-wise. Nissan dealers push for LEAF customers to lease, not buy, is helping used LEAF buyers now. The pre-owned car market is being flooded with gently used post-lease LEAF’s causing dealerships to sell them several thousand dollars below book value. If you are willing to be a second owner, there are very reasonably priced LEAF’s out there. My advice is that you look for 2013 or newer SV or SL model so you guarantee the 6.6 kW charger to save time on level 2 charging. It is nice if you also find one with the level 3 charge port/LED headlight package to increase night driving efficiency and to further save time on charging if you live in an area, or will road trip through a region, that has public CHAdeMO chargers. (#)LEAF owners love their cars. LEAF’s score very high on the owner satisfaction measures. Most LEAF owners replace expired LEAF leases with the current year’s LEAF. When I have driven this car for 4-5 years I plan on replacing it with another post-lease LEAF, one of the coming next generation LEAF’s with their improved range. Or I might possibly upgrade even further to a post-lease on the coming Tesla Generation 3 car. Don’t rule out electric cars with the “they are too overpriced/not affordable” argument. Explore the pre-owned market first!

      4. Don says:

        Leaf is great ride, smooth!

      5. Steve Cushing says:

        I have owned a Honda In-sight for 17 years, in March. I have driven it nearly 190,000 miles and am still on the original battery for all that time . I realize this may not be true for all hybrids or EV’s but everyone that I know has had the same experience with their In-sights and Priuses. By the way I live in Northern Minnesota and frequently drive terrible snow and temperature conditions. Honda has never failed me.

      6. "Electric Bill" (Bill Dale) says:

        Paula: it is very difficult to make generalities about the costs of driving an EV. One rreason, for that is that the cheapest EVs, that have the, smallest battery packs, will need, new packs much sooner than for the most expensive EVs such as the Tesla Model S 100D.

        If you buy a Leaf that gets less than 100 miles range per charge, an average day’s driving will come much closer to getting.down to “empty” than a Tesla whose range is 300 mikes or so. Any battery pack that is always being driven every day down close to “empty” will be stressed more than a battery pack that is only being depleted a tiny part of the pack’s capacity, so a small pack will be wearing out quicker than a big pack will, percentage wise.

        Also, consider what happens when a, big pack has been driven for,, say, five years. If it loses, say, ten percent of its capacity, it still will have much more capacity per charge than the driver needs to handle one day’s driving. So a car that starts out with a capacity of 300 miles when new, will still be able to drive 270 miles per charge after five years. After another five years of driving, it will still have about 250 miles of driving range left. As you can see, after 20 years or so, it still has enough capacity left to do, a minimum day’s driving, whereas after just 5 or six years of driving, the capacity of the leaf’s battery pack may no longer hold enough range to handle a full day’s driving. And because,the Leaf’s battery pack is being depleted much closer to empty, it is being stressed out more… to fully deplete a pack is bad enough to ruin a pack.

        This means that you should buy a car— whether new or used— with the biggest capacity you can afford. A used Model S 100 D will give satisfactory range for many more years than the, Leaf, whose pack might reach the point it needs to be replaced after only 6 or 8 years of daily driving at close to its full range.

        This, means that shopping for a used EV that still, has,, say, 250, miles range left is going to last you much longer than a new Leaf, whose range from day one is, only, a little more than 100 miles.

        Whatever your budget, try to buy an EV with the greatest range available, which means a used EV is likely yo give you your best deal after ten or more years of driving.

    2. Peter S.Mulshine says:

      The electric rates for governments[&&&postal vehicles ]] are usually 1/2 to 1/3 the rate that homeowners pay,,government cars usually dont drive too far or many miles in a day.Almost all are idle during nightime when electricity rates are even CHEAPER!!!They can be timed to recharged then A huge part of gas purchases can be avoided thereby lessening the burden on motorists that still use gas!!!
      Maybe in the future Oil companies will ask for even more subsidies than they currently get.

      1. Anonymous says:

        Peters comment is an excellent one. By requiring local/state governments to use electric cars when conditions permit (miles being driven, load, etc.) would be a benefit to all taxpayers. Couple this with solar power which is abundant in my state to help with some of the recharging might help also. I say might because solar is still very expensive to install. I’m still seeing muni vehicles being used with no concern over cost. Large load carrying SUVand’s, cargo van’s, etc carrying only one person and empty of cargo being used for tasks that a small gas or electric car would be ideal for. If our governments would try to be efficient and display this efficiency to the public, in other words lead by example, that example might be catching. Maybe more citizens would be receptive to electric powered vehicles.

    3. Anonymous says:

      maybe you moron should compared the LEAF to a NEW FUEL EFFICIENT car comparable in size and weight to a LEAF and not your “old car”?

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