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Electric Vehicles Gaining The Attention They Truly Deserve | Solar Energy USA Blog Archive

Electric Vehicles Gaining The Attention They Truly Deserve

Posted on Thursday, November 1st, 2012 at 8:56 pm by Solar Energy USA
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tesla_model_sNovember started off with a bang in terms of electric vehicle (EV) records and awards. The Tesla Motors Model S sedan was named automobile of the year by Automobile Magazine, citing the car’s design and impressive speed. The Model S is an all-electric luxury sedan that can accelerate from zero to 60 miles per hour in just 4.3 seconds. That’s fast for any car, but especially one with the size and roominess of the Model S. In a test arranged by the magazine, the Model S even beat a 560 horsepower BMW M5 sedan in a race to which could hit 100 miles an hour first.

Tesla Motors has another all-electric model, the Roadster, which can reach 60MPH in 3.9 seconds or less (depending on the Roadster model being tested). Tesla’s Model S is available with 85kWh, 60kWh, and 40kWh battery packs which cost approximately $11 dollars, $7.50, and $5 dollars to recharge, respectively, for total driving range from 160 miles up to 300 miles depending on the model.

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GM announced record monthly Chevy Volt sales in October thanks to 2,961 plug-in hybrid units being sold. The partial electric vehicle has an electric range of up to 40 miles after which the backup gasoline engine kicks on, allowing 300 more miles to be travelled. The Volt has a 16kWh battery pack which costs approximately $2 dollars to recharge for a 40 mile electric commute. Compared to a 20MPG car being fueled with $3.50/gallon gasoline, it’s easy to see how all-electric and partial electric vehicles pay for themselves over time, which presumably played a factor in stimulating the Volt’s record sales month.

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Nissan reported a high October sales month after their Leaf model was purchased by 1,579 drivers, its second highest Leaf sales month behind June 2011 when 1,708 EVs were sold. The all-electric Leaf gets between 70 and 100 miles per charge. The 24kWh battery pack costs approximately $3 dollars to recharge. 2012 has been something of a spectacular turnaround for the Leaf, which has been running in the three-digit sales figures since all the way back in November 2011.

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While dollars savings are impressive comparing a plug-in EV recharged with utility power versus paying to fuel a standard gasoline-burning automobile, these savings are even greater when refueling an electric car with solar energy.

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For more on financial savings from driving an EV recharged with solar see our earlier blog post comparing solar powered cars to gasoline powered cars. And be sure to see our electric car showoff and electric supercar ridealong video on the Solar Energy USA YouTube page.

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