Electric cars Difference Engine Tailpipe truths The Economist

15 Июн 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи Electric cars Difference Engine Tailpipe truths The Economist отключены
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Difference Engine: Tailpipe

GETTING the equivalent of 106 mpg (2.2 the Nissan Leaf electric car seem a motoring skinflint s come true. Even an plug-in hybrid like the Volt (Opel/Vauxhall Ampera in with an energy consumption to 61mpg, sounds pretty too. Yet, for all their neither has been selling well, despite the present price of petrol (see off the road ”, July 15th

With big-ticket items motor cars, consumers learned to do their calculations As far as electric cars are concerned, have sussed out that do not make particularly good sense, even with a handout from the federal They would have to their hybrids or plug-in for seven to ten years to recoup the of better fuel economy.

Few their cars anything that long. Even in depressed times, American tend to trade in their after no more than six

And when it comes to replacing like the Toyota Prius, two out of owners revert back to power, finds Edmunds.com, s most popular site for car-buying advice. “Even as gas soar, the economics of buying a vehicle don t make much in many cases,” notes Plache, Edmunds.com s chief

It all comes down to the price of the battery, which nowadays a shade under $600 per (kWh) of storage capacity. As an car capable of travelling 75 miles or so charges needs around of capacity, the battery alone $14,000 to the price of the vehicle. The is a car that costs way too much for it offers in fuel savings.

A electric vehicle like s forthcoming Focus EV, with a range of 100 miles (say, 70 in real-world conditions) and an equivalent economy up there with the Leaf s 106mpg, has a base of $39,200. The petrol-powered version of the vehicle, which averages 40mpg, costs just In other words, batteries to come down to less $200 per kWh before electrics can go

Clearly, those who buy a plug-in like the Ford Focus EV or Leaf today are making kind of statement about green credentials.

But what of statement? While it is impossible to buying an electric vehicle, or a hybrid, on purely financial it is fair to say that most assume that electric are far more gentle on the environment are petrol-powered cars. But is that the case?

Electric vehicles may have no emissions, but generating the electricity to charge their batteries plenty of carbon dioxide and pollutants, including sulphur nitrogen oxides and mercury. their batteries, plastics and aluminium components produces a lot more.

On the other hand, cars may be getting cleaner and but extracting and refining the crude and distributing the light hydrocarbon to petrol stations, still lots of noxious emissions. And cars, too, are having to ever lighter, and more intensive, materials to meet fuel-economy requirements. The only way to like with like is to a full fuel-cycle (ie, approach in both instances.

the venerable Union of Concerned (UCS), a non-profit organisation spun out of the Massachusetts Institute of in the late 1960s to tackle and public-safety issues, has had a stab at just that. On April it published a comprehensive report on the savings and emissions from vehicles.

In many parts of the electricity is generated mainly coal—a dirty fuel casts a pall over the vehicle s pristine image. The UCS “State of Charge ”, seeks to such matters. The UCS finds electric vehicles charged the grid produce lower than a petrol-powered car that 27mpg.

And they did so, the report claims, in places where the electricity is primarily from coal.

To get a on the problem, the UCS researchers divided into 13 regions, which then classified as good, and best for charging purposes. coal accounts for 45% of America s production, natural gas 24%, 20%, hydro 6%, renewables 4% and oil 1%. The emissions produced in replenishing an car’s batteries depend on the mix of sources used to power a s electricity grid.

Places are best for charging electric and parts of New York—have the lowest of coal-fired capacity and the highest of hydro and renewable sources in generating mix.

The UCS’s analysis shows that a vehicle charged with made from coal as much in the way of greenhouse gases as a car that averages 30mpg. If the is generated solely from gas, the emissions are equivalent to a car averaging 54mpg. And if the batteries are using solar power, it is having a car capable of 500mpg.

Here, your correspondent has the of his quibbles. The petrol car the UCS team for comparison is a notional compact gets 27mpg. Thus, the s claim that even vehicles powered by coal an emissions equivalent of 30mpg) are than comparable petrol

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The petrol benchmark was chosen in 2010—the most recent for which data were when the study was launched—the Protection Agency (EPA) figures for all compact cars that year averaged Given the huge improvements in efficiency over the past few the average today is more 35mpg. “In 2010, only one Smart ForTwo—achieved 40mpg,” Edmunds.com. “Today, the 40mpg is up to nine vehicles and growing.” is one of the reasons why pricey plug-ins as the Nissan Leaf and Chevrolet have flopped.

With s new emissions standards requiring a average of 34.1mpg by 2016, there have started their line-ups with imports from their divisions. Some of the foreign get even more to the gallon popular hybrids like the Prius which, according to by Consumers Union, delivers a 44mpg. With its advanced engine, Ford s new Fiesta, went on sale in Europe year, gets 47mpg “The balance of power ”, 23rd 2012). The Volkswagen up! is capable of 52mpg.

Both could soon be for American shores.

A second is that no thought seems to been given to how electric are actually recharged. The vast are expected to have routine cycles, being used to to work and back during the and then recharged overnight off-peak electricity. What to have been ignored in the to judgment is the Jekyll and Hyde of the grid as it switches from to off-peak power.

Since the energy markets in America become ruthlessly efficient, the cheapest power available shuffled instantaneously around the to wherever demand arises. In the electrical power has become a with capacity traded as need for electricity rises and As the sun sets, renewables like and wind power become Meanwhile, generating stations can be powered down easily, those fueled by natural go offline.

As a result, the cheap juice coming out of a plug in California can hale from coal-fired plants in Wyoming and Much the same happens in areas across the country.

So it is to say whether, even in California, an vehicle is cleaner than a petrol-powered car. Your would like to believe it so. But he help thinking that, the abundance of cleaner natural cheap and dirty coal remain the fuel of choice for electric vehicles overnight for a year to come. He welcomes cars, whether pure or hybrid, for the way they can help the country’s appetite for foreign But they are not the saviours of the environment as believed.

And as many motorists have found to their cost, are nowhere near as cheap to own as mpg figures might imply.

Intellectual-property wars: Patents ploughshares

BAIC E150 EV Electric Cars
BAIC E150 EV Electric Cars
BAIC E150 EV Electric Cars
BAIC E150 EV Electric Cars
BAIC E150 EV Electric Cars
BAIC E150 EV Electric Cars
BAIC E150 EV Electric Cars
BAIC E150 EV Electric Cars

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