Should I Buy an Electric Vehicle?

Learn the Facts Before You Switch

Should I buy an electric car?

According to the National Motorists Association, a growing number of states are taking steps to encourage EV adoption over the next 15 to 20 years. So it’s not surprising that more people are considering an electric vehicle. When you consider zero tailpipe emissions, the convenience of home charging, reduced maintenance needs and potential federal EV tax credits, there really is no better time than now to merge onto the all-electric highway.

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How do I choose an electric vehicle that is best for me?

The EV that’s best for you is the one that fits your lifestyle and driving habits. First, there’s the typical considerations like size, seating, amenities and potential incentives. Next, you’ll want to consider how far you drive on a typical day (or between charges) and if a single charge can accommodate your travels. If not, you’ll want to think about charging locations on the road. For help as you consider your options, we’ve provided a handy guide to going electric.

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Will an electric car have enough range for me?

If you’re concerned about EV range, keep this in mind: The average American car owner drove about 37 miles per day, according to the US Department of Transportation. That’s less than half of the EPA-estimated range provided by most current-generation electric vehicles. Depending on your driving habits, and if you can regularly access a charging station, an EV could be a good choice for you. To learn more, use our Range Calculator.

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How long does it take to charge an electric car?

At home, charging times vary depending on your model of EV and the charger you’re using. With a 'Level 2' charger (240V, NEMA 14-50 outlet), you can probably cover a lot of your daily driving needs by charging overnight. When out and about, many EVs can charge from 20% to 80% in as little as 45 minutes with a public DC fast charging station. So, plug in and grab a coffee. You’ll be good to go before it gets cold.

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What maintenance is needed for electric cars?

Unlike gas-powered vehicles, which usually require routine maintenance every 3,000–5,000 miles, electric vehicles may enjoy longer periods between scheduled maintenance visits. Typically, it’s every 12 months or every 10,000 miles. Typical 10,000-mile maintenance appointments include tire rotation, a multi-point inspection and inspections relating to tire tread/wear, brakes, fluids, etc.

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Are there charging stations near me?

If you’re looking for a public charging station, there are currently more than 130,000 locations across the country. This should make it easy to find a public charging station near you – or when traveling, along the most common driving routes. In fact, most people are surprised at how many chargers are actually out there. That’s why we have an easy way to find them. Just use the public charging locator to find one of thousands of charging locations across North America.

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How do EV tax credits work?

Many EVs qualify for federal, state and local tax credits or incentives. The amount and eligibility requirements of these incentives vary based on your income, price of the vehicle and some components (like the battery). To find out if the vehicle you’re interested in qualifies for potential incentives, use our simple cost comparison tool.

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How do electric cars work?

An electric vehicle works in many of the same ways your gas-powered vehicle does. In a gas-powered vehicle, a tank of gas represents stored energy potential. In an all-electric vehicle, similar potential energy is electricity, and the “fuel tank” is a high-capacity battery. Now, to move, the motor draws power from the bank of batteries to accelerate down the road. And for those of us who really enjoy driving? It often has more lively acceleration than its gas-powered counterpart.

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How much does it cost to charge an electric vehicle?

Let’s consider a hypothetical national average price of electricity at 15 cents per kWh. If an EV uses 27 kWh to travel 100 miles, the cost is $0.0405 per mile… or $4.05 for 100 miles. Of course, the cost to charge can vary based on geographic location, speed of charge, public versus home charging, etc.

Charging on the Road

What is the difference between Level 1, Level 2, and DC fast charging for EVs?

The difference between charger methods is simple. A Level 1 charger plugs into a standard 120V AC residential outlet and takes a relatively long time to charge an EV battery. A Level 2 charger uses a 240V AC power outlet (the same as an electric clothes dryer) to charge in much less time than with a Level 1 charger. Finally, DC Fast Charging uses direct current for even faster charging. More common at public charging stations, it can provide a substantial charge in as little as 45 minutes.

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The Future Demands to be Driven

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The Benefits of EV Ownership

Change How You Look at Driving

See How an EV Can Fit Into Your Life

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