Wednesday, July 21, 2010

An Electric Decision: My Next Car

Electric Smart Car
Electric Smart Car
I am never going to buy another gas-powered car.

My next one will be a plug-in electric, although I am not yet sure which one. Several new models are coming out in the next few years, and while most of the press is fixated on purchase price, not enough attention has been paid to battery life and the cost of replacing batteries. At $10,000 or more for the batteries alone, this is a potentially more gob-smacking expense than an engine rebuild of a conventional car.

Because I prefer to take public transit and do so whenever I can, most of my driving is between my house and the local park-and-ride. People fret about electric vehicle maximum ranges, but most folks drive well less than 40 miles per day. I drive less than 5 most days, sometimes 8-10 and occasionally I 'll drive to Seattle or North Bend or Kirkland or Renton, and might rack up 30-35 miles.

Here's a good general comparison of many of the current and projected offerings.

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