Over the last couple of years, electric vehicles have begun to gain a lot of popularity over the most traditional vehicles powered by the 100-year-old internal combustion engine. With Musk and Tesla on the verge of launching the X model, the stage is set for another kind show, featuring zero-emission vehicles.
In this article, we are going to show you why electric vehicles are considered the future of the automotive industry and when it’s time for you to replace your 24-mile per gallon car for a vehicle running solely on electric power.
A few historical facts about the electric vehicles
Cars running on electricity is not a new concept. In fact, these types of vehicles have been around for the first half of the 19th century. The most significant milestones in the history of the electric vehicles are Ányos Jedlik’s 1827 electric motor, Detroit Electric’s model 47, Robert Anderson’s electric carriage and Impact, a two-seat electric car produced by General Motors in the early 90s.
Apart from cars, there are other types of vehicles which take advantage of the electric engine technology. For example, trams and trains can travel around a well-defined grid using electricity. Modern forklifts are also equipped with an electrical energy storage device.
Did you know that at the beginning of the 20th century, electric vehicles were so popular that almost 30 percent of all vehicles ran on electricity? Moreover, Woodrow Wilson was to so taken by these type of vehicles that he used only Milburn Electrics cars to get around Washington.
Electric Vehicles for a Brighter Future
Since electric cars are so versatile and environmental-friendly, why was the concept abandoned? One would argue that it’s all about range. Indeed, an electric car is far more eco-friendly than a car powered by gasoline, but, unfortunately, an electric vehicle can only go so far.
As the infrastructure expanded, connecting more and more US cities, the consumer needs a type of vehicle capable of covering vast distances. Electric vehicles are as powerful as cars powered by an internal combustion engine, but they have a limited range.
Another factor that contributed to the downfall of electric vehicles was the discovery of vast reserves of petroleum. As history points out, the reserves of oil discovered in Oklahoma, Texas and California meant that gas became much cheaper.
Subsequently, reduced gas prices meant that it was much more affordable to own and to drive a gasoline-powered car than electric vehicles. Moreover, the infrastructure was not designed to handle cars powered by electric engines.
But, in the last couple of years, things have begun to change, and it would seem that the electric vehicle project is back on the table. And this time, it is here to stay.
Why this sudden change of heart? There are a lot of factors which prompted car manufacturers to seek out alternative solutions to gasoline-powered vehicles.
One aspect is the status quo of the fossil fuel reserve. As we know, petroleum is a non-regenerative power source, which means that once when it’s gone, it will spell out “game over.” According to a report published by a US agency, with the oil reserves on the verge of depletion, USA is currently importing 300-billion dollars worth of oil each year from foreign countries.
Ample steps have been taken to reduce US’s dependency on foreign oil reserves, but it would seem that the best solution still is the electric car engine.
Climate shift is also considered another factor that influenced the decision of revamping the electric engines. It is a well-known fact that an internal combustion engine’s emissions can thin out the layer of ozone, directly contributing to global warming.
A vehicle running on an electric engine has zero emissions, and it has the characteristics of a regular car.
When it comes to EV (electric vehicles), engine power is not a problem, but range is. Electric vehicles are so powerful that they can, in fact, replace sports car some days.
Bill Nye, the science guy, actually stated in a scientific report that NASCAR would profit more from introducing electric vehicles on their tracks. Moreover, he added that this move will also influence race fans in purchasing their own electric cars, which can only be translated as a boost for the economy.
Another great argument in the favor of manufacturing more EVs is savings. According to one report published by an economic analyst, if drivers will start buying electric cars, they could save up to 5000 dollars on gas money in just five years.
Best choices in Electric Vehicles
We talked a little about the history of electric vehicles and about how our future will look like if we shifted to electric cars. And now, it’s time to bring forth the contestants. Here are our top choices in electric cars.
- Tesla Model X
Now entering its third launch phase, Tesla Model X will be the definition of a family-friendly SUV. Running solely on electric power, this van has all it takes to topple even the most powerful SUVs out there.
The X model has a couple of unique feature like the Falcon Wings door, and the Active Safety scanner, which continually monitors the area surrounding the vehicle, established whether the driver is any danger or not.
Among other specs, model X can hit 0 to 60 mph range in 3.8 seconds, and it has a liquid-cooled powertrain. Model X is powered by a 70 kWH lithium-ion battery, which is controlled by a microprocessor.
The car can be charged using the 48 amp single phase charger, and it is also compatible with Tesla’s wall connector.
- Volkswagen Passat GTE Plug-in
VW’s all-out electric vehicle is, by far, more wallet-friendly than Tesla Model X. With a top speed of 136 mph, the car will be able to bridge the 0 to 60 mph gap in over 8 seconds. Most of you would think that the time frame is too big, but given the fact this is an electric car, the interval will be very brief.
According to the carmaker, the GTE Plug-in will have an autonomy of 31 miles. Given its technical capabilities and its decent price, the GTE Plug-in is your best choice in EVs.
- Audi Q7 Plug-in
You though that only VW and Tesla are the only one experimenting with electric vehicles? Then guess again. Launched in the fall of 2015, the Q7 Plug-in managed to take advantage of past and present technologies.
The sleek and elegant chassis now sits atop a powerful electric engine, with can go from 0 to 100 kilometers per hour in 6 seconds.
- BMW 3 Series Plug-in
And now here’s a car that expresses both refinement and brute force. Still in the prototype phase, the all-electric BMW car can reach a top speed of 120 kilometers per hours, and can go from 0 to 100 kilometers per hour under 7 seconds. Moreover, the car has an autonomy of 35 kilometers.
The future is around the corner, and it starts with the electric car. Whether it’s a sedan or an SUV, your dream car is out there.