The US Department of Energy (DOE) recently announced that about twice as many electric vehicles were sold in the first half of 2013 compared to the first half of 2012. The DOE noted the very low cost of fueling an electric car versus fueling a gasmobile, and the eGallon tool it recently unveiled. “The eGallon, a quick and simple way for consumers to compare the costs of fueling electric vehicles vs. driving on gasoline, rose slightly to $1.18 from $1.14 in the latest monthly numbers, but remains far below the $3.49 cost of a gallon of gasoline,” a press release sent to me by the DOE stated.
Credit: Nissan image modified by Zachary Shahan / EV Obsession
The low cost of powering a car with electricity is part of the equation, but as the electricity prices shared by the DOE show, that’s part of the equation that doesn’t change much over time — or doesn’t change very quickly. That surely doesn’t account for the 100% increase in plug-in electric vehicle sales in the first half of 2013 compared to the first half of 2012. The biggest reasons for that, I’m quite positive are:
•Nissan Leaf production moved to the US, bringing its price down by over $6,000 and making it very affordable. Sales have skyrocketed as a result.
•Production of the Tesla Model S, widely considered the best production car in the world, has gotten up to a noteworthy level, resulting in the deliveries of thousands of these vehicle.
•The Chevy Volt has steadily seen strong sales. Even with the Leaf and Model S picking up sales, the Volt has sold well thanks to its excellent reviews (i.e., quality) and the gas extender that makes the range of the plug-in hybrid electric vehicle comparable to that of a conventional gasoline-powered car. It has also implemented some decent price cuts.
The Key Component — Batteries
The DOE also notes the rapid drop in the price of lithium-ion batteries for electric cars: “ thanks to technology improvements and growing domesti