Electric cars are making an appearance but how serious are they?
At the time of writing it has taken four years for there to be a total of just over 23,000 electric cars in New Zealand compared to a total car fleet of 4.1 million and we will need to get to 80,000 or 2% to be a sector worth taxing. so there is a long way to go. There is a lot of indecision among the manufacturers about the future, with Tesla, unencumbered by a manufacturing legacy, opening three new factories in 2021 to give them a production capacity of 2 million cars a year. This is.compared to the current world total production of about ten million cars. Of the legacy manufacturers, Volkswagen and General Motors have committed to an electric future but have only just started production in one or two factories, Ford have built an electric Mustang and Toyota have concentrated on hydrogen, plus a bundle of small manufacturers in various countries. Batteries make up a third of the production cost of an electric car and although they have improved in performance and come down in price they have not broken the barrier to be cheaper to build than an internal combustion car. It is anticipated to be achieved in the next year or two but we are not there yet. Here are links to a couple of videos that set out some facts and scenarios so that you can make your own decision. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1CUA2imRYRM&feature=emb_logo https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7Jg1IJ68_g&t=255s It will take ten to fifteen years to replace the worlds fleet of cars so there is plenty of time to make a decision and classic cars may well go on for twenty or thirty years but thats just an opinion.
Running costs of an electric vehicle. The financial concessions from the government are minor in that there is no road tax, saving $109, and you can drive in a bus lane, but we don't have a bus and so there is no lane to drive in. The big saving is in fuel and servicing. Very roughly it takes two Kilowatt units of electricity to take an electric car the same distance as one litre of petrol. This is a very rough calculation as there are a lot of variables. Electricity is expensive in the Far North at $0.45 a kilowatt, less rebates and petrol is about $1.80 a litre so fuel is about half for an electric car. If you have solar panels then your fuel costs are almost zero except when you use a charger on a longer trip away from home. Servicing costs are not necessary as there is no oil in the engine or filters to buy and, as there are very few moving parts repairs are minimal but you do need to have a WOF every year. The biggest benefit is in the driving as electric cars have superior acceleration and are very quiet and easy to drive.