Graph of the Day: The electric vehicle revolution is nigh | RenewEconomy

Graph of the Day: The electric vehicle revolution is nigh

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EVs on the road jumped globally from ~25,000 in 2010 to ~80,000 in 2011 to ~200,000 in 2012 to ~405,000 in 2013

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Actually, the electric vehicle revolution may already be in progress. Electric vehicles (EV) on the roads globally jumped from ~25,000 in 2010 to ~80,000 in 2011 to ~200,000 in 2012 to ~405,000 in 2013. That’s not linear growth, folks!

I recently wrote an article for about the likelihood that electric vehicles will dominate car sales within 10 years. I’m convinced they will, and it’s hard to see how that wouldn’t happen. You can check out the full article here. But some of the key points are captured in this infographic that the folks at Fix created:


As it shows, a Nissan Leaf is easily cheaper than a Ford Focus FWD over the course of a few years thanks to lower “fuel” and maintenance costs. Of course, you have to actually compare the electric vehicle you want with the gas vehicle you would buy and you have to use your own specific lifestyle and cost assumptions in order to get a real cost comparison.

You should also take other factors into account: the convenience of never having to go to a gas station again (simply charge up at home as you sleep), the ease and fun of driving with all that electric torque, the clean conscience you get from not polluting your local air or destroying the climate. Naturally, these are all things that I discuss a bit more in the Fix article. Check it out if you want more. (Or scroll through our 2,247 electric vehicle articles here on CleanTechnica for an even broader picture!)


Source: CleanTechnica. Reproduced with permission.

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  1. JeffJL 6 years ago

    Never to to a fuel station again? Where else can you go to get the air in your tyres checked? I feel like a thief when I do with my Leaf, but for the past 30 years they have been taking my money so the guilt does not last too long.

    • GregX 6 years ago

      Hey Jeff, You can get a good bicycle floor pump for $50 that’ll pump up car tyres no problem. No need to queue to pump your tyres up ever again. And no hint of guilt.

      • JeffJL 6 years ago

        How did you know I queued last time I went to the fuel station. Never thought of using the bike pump for the car tyres. I will give it a go next time I check.

        • Ronald Brakels 6 years ago

          For $50 you can get an electric air pump that will save on time and the burning of food kilojoules. Actually they start at under $15 but I don’t know what the quality of the smaller and cheaper ones are.

    • Miles Harding 6 years ago

      Not quite true, EVs only differ in the drive-train, all the other ‘car bits’ are the same.
      For the most part is is possible to bypass the dinosaur juice distributors while musing at the mugs sitting in queues waiting to have their wallets vacuumed.

  2. RobS 6 years ago

    Looking more like Obama’s 1 million by the end of 2015 promise, which just a few years was having to be back peddaled from, is surprisingly attainable.

  3. Ronald Brakels 6 years ago

    I’m afraid that’ s not a good inforgraphic. The emissions given for the Leaf are only possible if it were charged from in a 100% coal powered grid. Or perhaps Victoria. So that is not realistic. As no large 100% coal grids exist, if the car was charged anywhere except the hell that is Victoria its emissions would be less. Even zero or close to zero in many countries. And I’ll mention that even in countries with fossil fuel intensive grids it is still possible for people to at least sometimes charge their cars with household solar power. But the graphic gets even worse. The emissions for the petrol car only include what is produced from burning fuel in the tank. Emissions from refining and transporting the petrol are not included. I don’t know how they made this chart but it looks like they set out to make the worst comparison possible.

    • Motorshack 6 years ago

      Still, there is a valid rhetorical point in their approach. Namely, no detractor can accuse them of cherry-picking the numbers to make electric cars look better than they really are. Instead they’ve taken the worst possible case, and the comparison still favors electric cars by a substantial margin. That will be very hard to argue with.

      That being said, I agree that it might have been nice to see a more typical case as well. No point in underselling the product if you don’t have to.

      • Ronald Brakels 6 years ago

        They definitely could have set out to show that even in the worst possible case (except for perhaps Victoria) EVs still have lower emissions. However, the infographic doesn’t say that and I can see people assuming that it’s actually the best possible case.

        • Motorshack 6 years ago

          True enough. No doubt.

          As I said, I would have liked to see a more typical case as well.

          We are in substantial agreement, as far as I can see.

          • Ronald Brakels 6 years ago

            As Mr Squiggle would say, indubitably.

          • Motorshack 6 years ago

            I’m not Australian, so I had to look Mr.Squiggle up in Wikipedia. Seems unfortunate that he’s not around anymore. Tony Abbott could have sent over the plans for Direct Action, and Mr. Squiggle could have used his nose to make something sensible out of it.

            “Upside down! Upside down!”

          • Ronald Brakels 6 years ago

            It’s probably just as well Mr Squiggle doesn’t visit anymore. Since he’s from the moon that makes him an illegal immigrant and Tony Abbott would probably get the navy to tow his moon rocket out to sea.

    • Malcolm Scott 6 years ago

      Even in Victoria a hell hole for coal power stations and prima facie corrupted politicians on environmental matters, one can still get well priced renewable energy from retailers. Origin, AGL, Energy Australia, and GDF Suez are easily avoided for renewables without a cost uplift. Getup promotes Powershop. I went with Momentum – combined with a small solar PV I’m very happy that my Volt drinks only renewables

  4. Miles Harding 6 years ago

    I agree with Ronald Brakels, this graphic is a poor effort.It is only true in the USA because of substantial subsidies, which will disappear as uptake increases.

    In Australia, there is no way to justify an EV on financial grounds, one must look at social and environmental factors. Here, EVs (the Nissan Leaf) is approximately twice the price of an equivalent 4-foor small sedan. At today’s petrol prices, that $20,000 will fuel the petrol car for something like 200,000 km.

    Those social and environmental issues are compelling, though. Anybody who makes the switch to an EV will wonder why they put up with that noisy, poorly behaved, intrusive and smelly ICE for so long. The once feared “range anxiety” quickly gives way to forethought and confidence. It is also easily possible to be energy self-sufficient by using solar power and charging the car at home.

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