Not enough driving range

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Today’s EVs have enough battery range to meet the average Australian’s driving needs for over a week.

Current EVs have an average battery range of 480km but the technology is advancing so rapidly that new models can drive for almost 550km on a single charge.

The average Australian drives 38km per day so an EV owner can go for at least 10 days without a recharge. Unlike petrol cars, you can recharge at home or anywhere with access to electricity.

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Expensive to buy

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The upfront costs of EVs are currently more expensive than conventional vehicles, however powering your EV is much cheaper – about 70 per cent cheaper per kilometre in fact. That means the average EV driver saves $1,600 on fuel costs each year.

There are also lots of new mid-range EVs entering the Australian market in 2019. These include the Hyundai Ioniq ($44,990), Renault Zoe ($47,490), and Tesla Model 3 (around $55,000).

EVs are only going to become more affordable with time. According to Bloomberg, falling battery prices mean that the total ownership costs of EVs will be the same as conventional vehicles by 2021 and that upfront costs will be cheaper by 2025.

As competition, investment, and innovation increase, the costs of EVs will continue to fall while conventional vehicle prices stay the same.

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EVs are a passing fad

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Around the world, the EV industry is booming. In 2015, one million EVs were sold worldwide. In August 2018, four million EVs had been sold, with one million of these purchased in the previous six months alone.

In Norway, 50 per cent of all new cars sold in 2018 were EVs. In the same year, EVs accounted for five per cent of all new cars sold in China and seven per cent of all new cars sold in California. In the US, EV sales surged by 81 per cent between 2017 and 2018.

Uptake in Europe is expected to increase sharply in the coming years due to the EU’s combined EV target which is equivalent to around eight to nine million EVs on the road by 2020.

Australia is lagging because of a lack of EV policy leadership from governments, but 2017 sales were still 67 per cent higher than 2016. As more and more lower cost EV models come on the market and hundreds of new chargers are built across the country, EV sales will likely continue to grow.

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EVs will cause blackouts

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Managed correctly, EVs can increase the reliability of the grid, while reducing the unit price of electricity for everyone, even those who don’t drive and EV.

New EV models are now enabling battery discharging, which means that during times of peak demand EVs could discharge electricity back into the household or even grid. While the electricity grid will need to adapt to the increasing adoption of EVs, Australia can avoid both blackouts and undertaking mass new investment in power generation if this transition is managed appropriately. Indeed, the energy industry is already looking into how best to ensure the lights stay on, while at the same time encouraging people to buy EVs.

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Charging takes too long

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Charging times are falling quickly as technology advances. Residential chargers are able to fully charge EVs in around six to eight hours, depending on the vehicle’s capacity. This means you can easily charge your car overnight.

Public fast chargers are able to get you back on the road much faster. Leave your car at a charger while you go shopping or to work and in three hours, it’ll be fully charged. Ultra-rapid chargers can add 300km of range in ten minutes.

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Expensive to run

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EVs have lower running costs than internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEVs).
Fewer moving parts mean that EVs require less maintenance. With an EV you don’t need to replace filters and spark plugs, change oil, or repair the transmission, head gasket or engine. In 2018, maintenance and servicing savings of an EV were estimated at $300-400AUD/year.

Contrary to a popular myth EV batteries last as long as the lifetime of your car. Battery costs are continually falling. With current forecasts: today a 40 kilowatt (kW) battery (for example like that in a Nissan Leaf) would cost around $USD 8,000 to replace, but in 2030, the same battery is expected to cost $USD 2,800. Most vehicle manufacturers offer a 10-year or 160,000km warranty on batteries.

Another massive saving from EV ownership is fuel. Battery EVs don’t need any petrol or diesel and are charged with electricity. The average Australian drives 15,000km and spends around $2,160 on petrol per year ($0.14/km). An EV travelling 15,000km would cost around $600 per year ($0.04/km) in electricity costs.

If an EV user has a solar panel, charging is free!

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Just as bad for the environment

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Battery EVs have zero exhaust emissions, so that alone makes them better for the environment than an internal combustion engine vehicle (ICEV).

Research shows that even if an EV is charged by coal-fired electricity, it still generates lower net emissions that ICEVs.

By charging an EV using renewable energy, there is the potential to run your car completely carbon neutral. If Australia were to shift to 100 per cent EVs operating on renewable electricity, this would eliminate six per cent of Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Additionally, EV batteries can be used well after their EV end-of-life. Once a battery reaches 70 per cent capacity, it is no longer fit for use in a vehicle. However, vehicle manufacturers and private companies are leading the charge in battery recycling and repurposing, ensuring that zero emissions vehicles really have a low impact to the environment.

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There’s nowhere to charge EVs

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While 80 per cent of EV drivers globally charge their EV at home, there is still a need for public charging infrastructure.

An ever-expanding network of public charging infrastructure is being installed across Australia. Private companies have been building networks along highways, and both federal and state governments are now investing too.

Local councils are supporting local communities to make the change by installing chargers in local public areas, and it is increasingly common to see EV chargers in shopping centres.

If you check out the charger map on our website, you will see that the number of charging points is well into the hundreds.

Ultimately, you could charge an EV in a regular home power socket.

Check out this story of the woman who drove around Australia in a Tesla, showing that it really is possible to drive electric around Australia.

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EVs are inferior performers

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Unlike conventional vehicles, EVs deliver full torque instantly, meaning they can accelerate much faster than equivalent combustion engine vehicles.

EVs also often have their batteries placed along the bottom of the vehicle, lowering the centre of gravity and providing better handling and cornering.

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Batteries are dangerous and costly

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Driving a vehicle with a battery is no more dangerous than driving a traditional Internal Combustion Engine vehicle (ICEV). In fact, evidence suggests that lithium-ion batteries used in EVs are in fact as safe or even safer than conventional fuel. There are numerous studies that show that fires in EVs are no more likely or even less likely to occur than fires in ICEVs.

In Australia, Fire and Rescue organisations do not treat EVs as any more dangerous than ICEVs.

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