Here we go…
“The first thing is the saving in petrol. Since the vast majority of the cost of petrol is tax, it’s expensive stuff.”
Someone who doesn’t get it.
Petrol / gasoline / benzine is currently, as I type £1.37 a litre.
There is approximately 9.7 kWh of energy in a litre of petrol (10.7 for diesel)
£1.37 / 9.7 = 14.1 p per kWh
The average price for electricity is currently 16.6 p per kWh http://blog.comparemysolar.co.uk/electricity-price-per-kwh-2013-comparison-of-e-on-edf-npower-british-gas-scottish-and-sse/
So, broadly speaking, electric car vs petrol car, similar kerb weight, rolling resistance, wind resistance, etc etc etc, so it is going to take a broadly similar amount of ENERGY to move either car any fixed distance or comparable route.
As I have said time and time and time again, it is no coincidence that the cost of ENERGY per kWh is broadly similar, NO MATTER WHAT FORM YOU BUY THAT ENERGY IN.
1/ it doesn’t matter what form you buy your energy in, the price per kWh is broadly similar
2/ the energy consumption of broadly similar vehicles is broadly similar, irrespective of how they are powered.
Where is the incentive to buy the electric car, at a fucking premium?
If, and ONLY IF
1/ the rolling resistance of electric cars was dramatically reduced, super skinny tyres etc, no mechanical drivetrain, etc
2/ the air resistance of electric cars was dramatically reduced, teardrop shape and maximum speed of around 50 mph
3/ minimal energy was converted to heat, eg 100% regenerative braking, eg no drivetrain, just 4 in hub stepper motors carrying tyres.
Then the electric car can beat the petrol/diesel car in energy consumption, and items 1 and 2 can be done in a petrol or diesel car…
A gasoline/ diesel car can be “charged” from empty in 5 minutes tops.
The energy density of petrol / diesel in kHw per cubic metre kicks all batteries asses, but that by itself isn’t a dealbreaker…. there are plenty of high end motorcycles with barely 150 mile range.
A petrol / diesel fuel TANK costs a few dollars to make, an electric fuel “tank” costs thousands.
These are presently insurmountable obstacles, for the automobile “as we know it” to change to electric.
Item #1 in red above will, never, change, such is the nature of markets.
This means electric car adoption will never happen because electric is a CHEAPER source of fuel, it never will be.
Which leaves two options.
1/ electric is available, petrol / diesel isn’t
2/ electric is legal, petrol / diesel isn’t
and one more small problem, each 30,000 litre fuel tanker represents 300,000 kWh, for a 30 ampere 220 VAC mains supply (30 x 220 = 6,600 Kw) that means it takes 10/6.6 = 1.5 hours to transfer the energy equivalent of 1 litre of fuel, assuming 100% charging efficiency of course, which is beyond pie in the sky, so a theoretical maximum of 16 litres of fuel per 24 hours, nearer 10 with charging efficiencies, and nothing else in the house running, and of course you can’t *use* a car that is plugged in at home charging (which you can only do anyway if you have a driveway) so half that for 12 hours charging a day, maximum of 8 litres equivalent of fuel per day… that’s not much range
So the electrical distribution grid itself also becomes an issue.
Tell me again how electric cars are, in *any* way, practical?
The only *practical* applications for electric vehicles (Smiths have been making them commercially for 70+ years) are, by definition, not anything that you could possibly categorise as a personal automobile. (think electric milk floats and electric vans and so on)
Suggesting electric cars as an “alternative” to petrol or diesel cars is like suggesting motorcycles as an alternative to petrol and diesel cars, the sort of alternative that means “completely bloody different” and not the sort that means “exactly the same, except for the vroom sounds” which is all anyone is talking about.
so, why not get an electric motorcycle?
With 9kWh in its battery pack, nearly twice the capacity of the Toyota Prius, the 2012 Zero DS is the fastest, longest-range electric motorcycle to ever enter production. 84mph top speed, 112-mile range. Is that enough to make it practical, useful transportation? More importantly, can a bike that slow be fun to ride? For more about electric motorcycles, check out
same fucking issues….