We get lot of questions regarding EVs & myths related to EVs, being put forward by Big oil, Big Auto, Journalists & Petrol Heads. We think it's time to clear them out. For once & all.(writing twitter replies for same questions multiple times sucks also).
1. What are EVs?(yes we have seen comments from people asking if this EV runs on petrol. *sad strange noises)
- EV is short term used for Electric Vehicles. They run completely on electricity. Hybrids, combination of internal combustion engines & batteries, are not EVs. Tho companies advertise & report them as Electrified Vehicle, but it's NOT Electric Vehicle.
EVs are powered by batteries. Mostly Lithium Ion in different combination, like NCA, LFP.
2. Do I need to replace EV batteries every couple of years? - HELL NO
- HELL NO. NOPE. NEVER. Unless & until you got real bad luck. Even then you won't have pay a dime, because companies now generally gives 8 yr battery warranty. Yup 8 yr is now kind of industry standard.
Let's get to some facts on lifetime of EV Batteries.
Current Tesla batteries last for about 300-500k miles. The kind of which rarely someone drives in India in lifetime of a car.
Actual Tesla owners report about a 5% drop in battery capacity by the 50,000 mile mark but after that, the rate of degradation drops considerably. On average, cars with 160,000 miles on them still have 90% of their battery capacity remaining. Projecting forward from the real world data available, a Tesla battery should still have 80% battery capacity after 500,000 miles of driving.
We guess even with Today's tech, you are good with EVs.
This myth of changing batteries every couple of years have risen due to our experience with Smartphones.
But EV batteries are different from that in phones. They got a good BMS, cooling systems. Much better chemistry and cell type.
So batteries can last up to 5-8L km even as of now. You won't be driving that much either.
But wait. Tesla Million Mile battery is coming soon. You read that right. Million mile.
There is this video on youtube Jeff Dahn(Tesla Battery Research) Talking lithium Battery Additives.
Cells retaining 97% capacity after 5300 full cycles are possible!
Things are possible if companies spend in R&D. So you better ignore the FUD being spread on battery life.
Now you may argue that this is Tesla specific. Wait, Hyundai & MG are also giving 8yr warranty. And am sure battery tech worldwide will keep improving. If Tesla can, others can too. Even if not, you surely should't be worried about battery till 8-10 yrs.
Lets see some examples
1. Tesla owner becomes first to push Model 3 to 100,000 miles, gets 303-308mile range(comes with 310)
2. Leaf(not the best car in terms of battery tech) after 6 years and 100k miles having 80% capacity left.
3. What about recycling of batteries? they will be dumped into landfills. - BS
It's straight up bullshit.
EV batteries are being recycled. Companies have start to end programs for EV batteries.
“We have current partner companies on every major continent where we have cars operating that we work with to do this today and, in addition, we’re developing internally more processes, we’re doing R&D on how we can improve this recycling process to get more of the active materials back.”
“And ultimately what we want is a closed loop at the Gigafactories that reuses recycled materials. This isn’t impossible and we see a pathway to do it.”
Tesla claims to be “developing a unique battery recycling system” at Gigafactory 1 in Nevada. Tesla wrote in the impact report: “At Gigafactory 1, Tesla is developing a unique battery recycling system that will process both battery manufacturing scrap and end-of-life batteries. Through this system, the recovery of critical minerals such as lithium and cobalt will be maximized along with the recovery of all metals used in the battery cell, such as copper, aluminum and steel. All of these materials will be recovered in forms optimized for new battery material production.”
Not only Tesla, CATL is also recycling batteries. And every battery/EV manufacturer will.
Apart from recycling, some companies are trying Second Life use of EV batteries. Use as powerpacks for home energy storage or large scale grid energy storage.
At laboratories in Japan and Australia, Relectrify company is currently integrating old Nissan LEAF batteries into a larger battery pack.
You can forget about dumping batteries.
4. EVs are not clean because battery manufacturing is not clean. - WRONG
5. EVs are not clean when powered by fossil electricity - Again WRONG
We will address these both two collectively.
-Most profound point to note: ICE cars burn gasoline less cleanly than it did when new. As engines age they inevitably begin to irreparably fall apart, become less efficient, and just plain become dirtier.
-Over time, electricity on the grid gets cleaner and cleaner. That's because of ever-tighter regulations requiring cleanup measures, and as old inefficient power plants are retired they're replaced with new efficient ones either solar or wind which are now cheaper than coal power plants in India.
-You can produce your own electricity at home using solar.
A recent study published by researcher Ryan Cornell of Harvard University shows that electric vehicles emit less carbon emissions than internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles even when charged off a largely coal-powered grid.
Using the Argonne full lifecycle model, which accounts for battery and vehicle manufacturing as well as a standardised 150,000 miles (about 240,000km) life, an average ICE vehicle will emit around 69 metric tonnes in its lifetime.
But an EV, in a state like Wyoming,US which is almost completely powered by coal, will only produce 66 metric tonnes if the vehicle is made by a manufacturer using a grid that is 13% renewables (the US national average).
Now you might say here that this is just 3mT difference, do note that it's in worst case scenario of using almost all coal powered Electricity. Share of Renewable is increasing(Karnataka has ~62% mix of renewable) and you can always put solar at home and charge green.
Redo of 2017 study uses newer data on battery manufacturing.
There was a recent report in 'The Weekend Australian' titled - Extra Emissions are Dirty Little Secret of Electric Cars.
Well, worry not if you came across that. It's debunked by Dutch EV Expert Auke Hoekstra.
“There are lies, damned lies and statistics. I hate the quote but it applies to the newest column of statistician and merchant of doubt Bjorn Lomborg,” Hoekstra wrote.
You can either visit the article or directly go to his twitter thread linked below.
We will post another Debunking also.
Well we have listed enough reports to make one believe that EVs ARE CLEANER INCLUDING MANUFACTURING & BEING POWERED BY COAL.
Let's see one more, India Specific- This analysis from CEEWIndia shows that EVs are already cleaner than ICE cars, and will get even cleaner by 2030.
If anyone ever says again that EVs are not clean, BS. Total BS. Show him this article containing link to all reports. Every report that has ever been published saying EVs are not clean, has been debunked.
BTW those worried about manufacturing and coal emissions, have they ever asked questions on fuel generation, refining & transportation. ICE emissions you see don’t include these factors. When included EVs will be winning by more wide margin.
6. Grid will fail if we shift to EV - Nah
-Well yeah for sure if the infrastructure is weak. Thing is millions of EVs aren’t coming on road tomorrow at once. EV adoption will follow steadily. This will give enough time to utilities to strengthen their infrastructure.
This wired article explains its best - Electric Cars Could Destroy the Electric Grid—or Fix It Forever.
A major uptick in driving on batteries will stress today's ageing grid, but also offer an opportunity to make it way better. EV uptake could be a boon to the grid, by levelling out daily electricity demand and possibly even storing renewable energy in cars’ batteries, to be discharged when needed.
These nighttime hours—when EVs are conveniently parked in garages and curbs—are the cheapest time to charge. This fact isn’t lost on EV manufacturers. “Most EVs have systems that allow you to say, ‘OK, I am leaving at 8 am,’ so the computer can calculate the rate at which it needs to charge so it is fully charged by the time you need to leave,” says Kelly.
This charging pattern would be ideal for utilities. In order to satisfy the day and night peaks and valleys of electricity demand, utilities typically have to spin up, and shut down power plants. All that cycling is expensive. Remember, EVs can use as much energy, or even more, an entire home to charge. In an ideal situation—where cars in a given neighbourhood or city stagger out their overnight charging needs—the valleys would raise to meet average daytime uses. With more overall demand, and less diurnal variation, generating electricity gets be cheaper. And, because of the way utilities are regulated, that cost gets reflected in your bill, regardless of what you drive.
So, if electric vehicles do collide with the grid, it’s because utilities took their eyes off the road.
And don’t forget that you can have solar and battery storage at your home.
7. Where is charging infra? – Already here
-At your home! for sure your 90% of drive is under 100 km. Going to office, coming back. That’s what mostly cars are used for. Now 1. Charge at home overnight(problem for those not having dedicated spaces in apartments) 2. Charge at office parking.
Most EV owners charge at home if possible. Keeps the battery good. But not all have a separate home. Many these days live in apartment. If you have dedicated parking space then it’s not much of a problem. If you don’t have a dedicated space or those who park on streets. Office charging will come up. Street charging will come up too. These won’t be issue for long. Or if you have a DC fast nearby, you can go and charge there every 3-4 day or so.
Charging infra is coming up. In the city paring spaces, near malls.
For city drive, it’s not much of an issue. Issue is of long distance driving. Highway DC fasts are now coming up too & many have been planned.
All this isn’t going to be an issue. Read our blog Where are charger, but where are EVs?
You can’t expect chargers everywhere without much EVs on road. As EV share increases, Chargers will come up too.
Where there is a plug, there is charging infra.
8. I would run out of charge
Green Car Reports says is nicely –
Yep, a car that totally dies all of a sudden is a worrisome situation. Ask anyone who ran out of gasoline or had a breakdown in the middle of a tunnel or on a bridge.
Of course, when was the last time you let your car run so low that you actually ran out of gas? Doesn’t happen much, does it? Just as with gasoline cars, electric-car drivers learn the vehicle’s real range and stop obsessing when the remaining-range indicator drops into double digits.
It’s also noteworthy that all EVs have a "range mode" that restricts power when the battery is very low. It will give you 1 to 5 miles more, at reduced performance and speed—to get you out of that tunnel, for instance. They don't just shut down without warning, as gas cars do when they run out of fuel.
We Don’t understand how can you run out of battery if you planned your trip. Only way that can happen is if you go on a route having no chargers, or were being a jerk and flooring your EV too much. Things come down to charging infra which we explained in last point. Most drive being city drive, running out of charge is nearly impossible.
9. EVs are costly
-Well Yes and No. EVs seems costly when you look at buying price, but they are not when you look at Total Cost of Ownership. Have you ever wondered how much you spend on fuel and maintenance. Neither did we till we did an economics comparison of ICE vs EV 2w. Check out here. EVs are cheaper to run overall. Zero to little maintenance. That’s just regular thing like tires, wiper blades, air filter.
We will shortly be doing a Economics comparison for 4 wheelers and link it here when done.
Also EV prices are going to decrease as EV tech advances. We Indians are in habit of buying low cost cars with no safety tech and features. It’s changing with new generation & EVs aren’t costly when you look at TCO & features and safety they provide.
10. Jobs will be lost
Dramatic job creation finding in e-vehicles study - The shift to electric cars could create more than twice as many new jobs as the number that will be lost by the demise of the internal combustion engine. That is the main finding of a study by the European Association of Electrical Contractors (AIE) into the employment impact of a move to e-vehicles. The main beneficiaries will be people working for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). T&E clean cars director Greg Archer added: ‘Politicians should take note of this study, not just for what it says about the benefits of e-vehicles, but as a warning not to trust traditional industries that say they can’t tackle environmental issues without putting large numbers of people out of work. It’s normally an excuse for a failure to take action. And this study underestimates the full potential of e-vehicles, as even more jobs could be created if we take into account the electrification of trucks, buses and ships.’ We hope that you are happy seeing this, Sirish.
How Germany closed its coal industry without sacking a single miner - Do see how Germany closed its coal industry without sacking a single miner.
Jobs will be created in Renewable sectors and others too. Also using the argument of job, we should be opposing automation in industries also. :)
There is this documentary (do watch)- Will Germany's car industry survive?
Some points to note from this -
Its about political will.
Jobs may be lost, but new ones will be created.
Trying to protect jobs in sector where world markets have moved, is the worst mistake one can ever make.
11. Hybrids are better – NO.
-Well at this time we don’t favour Hybrids. We aren’t against them, but they shouldn’t be in focus now. Their time is gone. When world is shifting to Electric, we focusing on hybrids will be we losing another race.
Also seems that hybrids aren’t much better than ICE. Also as per owners, their maintenance is costly also.
Telegraph recent article- Plug-in hybrid cars emit three times more CO2 in ‘real world’ driving.
A series of studies found the fuel consumption in the plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) was far greater on the road than claimed.
PHEVs are powered by a combination of battery-powered electric motor and a traditional combustion engine. But they only have a short range in electric mode - typically of between 15 and 25 miles - amid warnings motorists are neglecting to charge them and instead choosing to run them on petrol only.
Read our blog busting Toyota’s lie on Hybrids, Jobs and Infrastructure.
Conclusion- Big Auto & Oil, some Journalists will do anything to spread FUD on electric. Fact is EVs are cleaner and much better to drive than a ICE even as of today. And they are only going to get better & cleaner.
Next time someone starts debating that EVs are not clean, just post this article. Those who have to understand will understand(ones that get caught by FUD). Those who don’t have to understand will not(those with agendas).
We will leave you with below pic of Jalandhar during CoronaVirus Lockdown. No Cars, No factories running. It's time to Go Electric and Renewable. Fast!
Nikhil Chaudhary & Arun Bhat S
Building a Community for Future