The other day I asked my audience, how much does it cost per mile to drive an electric car?  If anyone is seriously considering buying an electric car that is probably the first question they would ask so they can compare it to a gas powered engine.

Well one of my listeners came through and found an article at the site Plug In America that was published in 2016.

In that article I found that the average Electric Vehicle (EV) needs approximately 30 kWH of electricity to power a vehicle 100 miles.  They then gave us examples of what current EV’s have:

  • The Nissan LEAF is exactly 30 kWh per 100 miles.
  • A Tesla Model S 60D is rated at a combined 32 kWh per 100 miles and uses a little more energy since it’s heavier and more powerful than a LEAF.
  • The Chevrolet Bolt is currently the most efficient electric car and has a combined consumption rating of 28 kWh per 100 miles.

We then find out from the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute the following:

  • the sales-weighted average fuel economy of all new vehicles sold in the United States in 2016 was 25.3 mpg.
  • The average cost for a gallon of regular gasoline in the US over the past two years was $2.35/gallon.

If we use the figures above and 15,000 miles as the average amount of miles a person will drive in a year, we can calculate the annual cost of gasoline for the average car driven 15,000 miles per year would be about $1,400 per year,

What about EV’s annual cost?

Taking into consideration that the cost of electricity varies greatly around the United States, the U of M Transportation Research Institute determined that the average cost of electricity in the United States is 12 cents per kWH.

We can now calculate the cost to drive an EV.  We must first take the 12 cents per kWH and times that by 100 miles and you get $3.60 to charge an electric engine to drive 100 miles.

We must then divide the average miles driven per year of 15,000 by 100 and you get 150 full charges.  Then if we take 150 times $3.60 you come up with the average person driving the average EV 15,000 miles per year pays about $540.00 per year to charge it.

.12 x 100 = 3.60

15,000/100 = 150

150 x 3.60 = $540

There you go, it appears that the average EV will cost you $860.00 less per year than the average gasoline powered vehicle to drive.  Of course this calculation does not include maintenance.

We can take it a step further and determine that the average cost per mile for a gasoline powered vehicle is 9.3 cents per mile compared to the average cost per mile for an electric powered vehicle costing you 3.6 cents per mile.

What does it all mean, it would cost you 258% less per mile to drive an electric vehicle.  Depending on the cost of the vehicle and maintenance as well as the need for only short trips it sounds like EV’s are a good deal.

The Live with Renk show airs Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to noon, to let me know your thoughts call (269) 441-9595