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Owning An Electric Vehicle Costs More Than A Gas-Powered Vehicle

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New research by AAA has been published that concludes that owning a new electric vehicle is more expensive than owning a traditional gas-powered car over five years and 75,000 miles. It’s worth noting that many people don’t keep their cars for five years. According to the research, owning the electric vehicle over that period is about $600 per year more expensive.

AAA does say that while the evidence shows the overall expense of owning an electric vehicle is eight percent more than owning a similar gas-powered vehicle, there are some categories for costs of owning an EV that is lower than the cost of owning a traditional gas-powered car. The study was conducted using 2019 versions of the Chevrolet Bolt, Hyundai Ionic Electric, Kia Soul EV, and VW eGolf. The gas-powered cars that the research compared the EV’s to included the Chevrolet Cruze, Honda Civic, Hyundai Elantra, Nissan Sentra, and Toyota Corolla.

While no Ford vehicles were used in the study, it certainly highlights any potential savings buyers considering the Mustang Mach-E over a traditional gas-powered Ford SUV should consider. According to the AAA study, 71 percent of electric car owners had never owned an EV before. Consumers seemed pleased with their decision, with 96 percent saying they would buy or lease another EV if they needed a new vehicle.

The study also showed that about 78 percent of electric vehicle owners also own a gas-powered vehicle in the household, but the majority of their driving is with electric vehicles. In the past, AAA research found that American car shoppers weren’t very keen on electric cars for various reasons. The two main reasons included the ability to charge and worries about the batteries going dead while driving.

The latest research shows that none of the EV drivers polled have ever run out of charge, and 75 percent of their charging takes place at home. That is an important point because AAA says that it shows firsthand from owners that range anxiety is no longer a worry for drivers. The researchers also note that certain aspects of driving electric vehicles have benefits despite the overall yearly higher costs than gas-powered vehicles.

AAA says that driving a vehicle with a traditional gas engine for 15,000 miles per year would cost more than $1,200 in fuel. Driving an electric vehicle the same 15,000 miles would cost $545 for electricity. Maintaining an EV is also traditionally cheaper by about $330 then a traditional vehicle. As for why electric vehicles cost more, the assumption is because of the higher purchase price leading to more expensive monthly payments and lease payments.

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Source: Car Complaints

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Shane is a car guy with a fondness for Mustangs and off-roading.

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Comments

  1. Ianstuart

    Comparing a Tesla Model 3 to a Toyota Corolla or a Chevrolet Cruze!!?? Is this meant to be a joke? The real. comparators are a Mercedes C, an Audi A4 or a BMW Model 3. And does anybody believe that the AAA doesn’t have an axe to grind?

    Reply
    1. Greg G

      That’s right. Parts don’t fall off chevys or toyotas. The fit and finish of the competition is hands down better than any tesla.

      Reply
  2. Williams

    The last paragraph wrecks this whole article. The title puts an opinion in people’s heads and false conclusions. In the final paragraph they admit EV is cheaper and that it is the buy or lease price difference. I have never heard this as a comparison argument.

    Reply
  3. Yoshihito Yakimoto

    This is simply a poorly written article.

    Reply
  4. Will Hamilton

    So, what it boils down to is that the cheaper operating and maintenance costs don’t make up for a higher purchase price. This of course involves numerous variables. I find the choice of comparison vehicles a bit odd, like why wasn’t the ICE Soul compared to the EV Soul?
    Also, with the price of EVs coming down, the whole thesis is outdated.

    Reply
  5. Gary

    Hilarious….. my 2021 Bolt lease is $111 per month. I put $4000 down and purchased an extra 5,000 miles to bring my annual miles to 15,000. My cost to charge at home is 4.5 cents per kWh if I charge off peak, which I always do at 220 volts/32 amps. A regular trip I make weekly is 200 miles. In my BMW 328i that trip costs me $32 in gas. In my Bolt my electricity cost is $2.34. For the return trip I charge at a free 7 kWh charger so the cost for my return trip is zero. In summary, round trip in BMW $64, round trip in Bolt $2.34. Insurance on Bolt lower, lease payment $300 less per month. No longer have the BMW. My other car is a Suburban with a a 37 gallon tank. That same round trip in the Suburban is $132. Funny that I received a pop up on this article stating the company that authored this article is looking for experienced automotive journalists….. no kidding ….. hahahaha

    Reply
  6. Gary

    Hilarious….. my 2021 Bolt lease is $111 per month. I put $4000 down and purchased an extra 5,000 miles to bring my annual miles to 15,000. My cost to charge at home is 4.5 cents per kWh if I charge off peak, which I always do at 220 volts/32 amps. A regular trip I make weekly is 200 miles. In my BMW 328i that trip costs me $32 in gas. In my Bolt my electricity cost is $2.34. For the return trip I charge at a free 7 kWh charger so the cost for my return trip is zero. In summary, round trip in BMW $64, round trip in Bolt $2.34. Insurance on Bolt lower, lease payment $300 less per month. No longer have the BMW. My other car is a Suburban with a a 37 gallon tank. That same round trip in the Suburban is $132. Funny that I received a pop up on this article stating the company that authored this article is looking for experienced automotive journalists….. no kidding ….. hahahaha.

    Reply
  7. Greg G

    This increased cost of the purchase price combined with the 25% higher insurance costs make evs more expensive and certainly offset any reduced maintenance and fuel costs savings. I have owned evs since 2015 and currently own a etron and taycan. I did not buy them for the cost savings (there are none). I bought them to reduce my carbon footprint.

    Reply
  8. Omer

    Panels fly off? All Teslas are bad quality???

    Batterirs designed to last 500K miles. And sorry. 15,000 miles with an EV saves you less than $700 a year per the article? Compare a BMW 3 series, Audi A4, VW Jetta or Arteon, to the Model 3.

    In my case (anecdotal) was contrast with an Audi S4 vs. A Model 3 Performamce (M3P). A savings of $350 in insurance yearly. 18,000 miles at 24mpg for the S4= $2467 at $3.29 a gallon. Same thing for the MP3 at a rate of $4 per full battery charge… $300 a year. And it was less than that since I had the chance of complimentary charging in many places especially business partners. So over $10,000 in gas savings and then the maintenance… Audi had a 2 year complimentary service so for the rest 3 years I owned the car and at least 3 oil changes at $125 a pop…

    So the Tesla was $1,000 more expensive, took a $credit for about $3000 (7,500 non refundable applied to tax liability) so I saved $2,000 on the price, $375 on oil changes and $10,000 on gas savings (projected to 2022 when I will reach 5 years with the M3P) sorry. Apples to apples Tesla won in my case and happy to report no panels flew off, minor paint problems that were fixed at no cost. Maintenance in 3 years? Well a cabin filter ($35.00) and window washer fluid… over $12K in savings. That is my projection in 1.5 years and my report.

    Reply
  9. jose velez

    I have a Mustang Mach E and my recharge cost is 0 since I have solar installation. No fuel charge, no oil change and should be less maintenance. I paid no tax on the purchase which in my case could be $20K and would get $7500 in tax credit.

    Reply

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