Electric Vehicles are vehicles that operate on an electric motor and generate power from energy stored in chargeable batteries. These vehicles are seen as a possible replacement to current generation automobiles as EVs address the problem of increasing air pollution, global warming etc.
EV runs on a battery instead of a petrol tank, and when too low the battery needs to be charged through an electric charging portal and it can be charged through the home if a home charging unit is installed which saves small trips to the nearest station.
The time it takes to fully charge an electric car can vary from 30 minutes to 12 hours. Surprising, right? This depends on the size of the battery and the speed of the charging point. A typical electric car (60kWh battery) takes just under 8 hours to charge from empty to full with a 7kW charging point. For many electric cars, one can add up to 100 miles within 35 minutes using a 50kW rapid charger.
The cost of EVs can be more than a gasoline car and a battery is an integral part of an electric vehicle. But to improve this and make EVs affordable, with the new technologies the cost of these batteries is expected to come down even more. A good battery could last up to 10 years and should be good for 300 to 500 cycles. When it comes to buying a car a lot of people weigh their decisions on the mileage of the car. A typical electric car provides an average mileage of 250 miles i.e. 403 km when fully charged whereas Tesla provides a mileage of 350 miles i.e. 563 km.
Talking about the history of electric vehicles, they first came into existence in the mid 19th century. Robert Anderson built the first crude electric vehicle around 1832 but it was not until the 1870s that electric vehicles became practical. It was the time when people used to ride horses and it was hard to make long trips. So they turned to the newly invented motor vehicles available in electric and gasoline.
Gasoline cars came with their own problems, changing gears was no easy task, the smell of the pollutants etc. As Electric motors on the other hand were easy to drive and were perfect for short trips, they became very popular very quickly, especially among women. Innovators took note of the high demand for electric vehicles and started to come up with ideas to make EVs better.
For example, In 1898, the founder of the sports car company Porsche, Ferdinand Porsche, developed an electric car called the P1 and around the same time he came up with the first hybrid car which was powered by both gasoline engine and electric engine. So, that’s how electric vehicles came into the market. It faced a sort of dark age for 30 years in the mid-1900s due to the cheap rates of gasoline cars and the increasing technology. But eventually, the shortage of fossil fuels and increasing pollution drove back the interests of people in EVs.
With the Ups and downs faced by electric vehicles, it was not till the beginning of the 21st century that EVs were truly revived. What changed suddenly? It’s been suggested that the turning point was the introduction of the Toyota Prius which was released in Japan in 1997 and became the world’s mass-produced hybrid-electric vehicle. It was a huge success and the best-selling hybrid worldwide during the past decade.
The second turning point was when a start-up of Silicon Valley Tesla would launch an electric sports car that could go 200 miles in one go. Later Tesla became one of the biggest automobile selling industries in California. The spurred success of Tesla in electric vehicles encouraged other automobile companies to increase their work in the
Now, there are more than 10 million electric vehicles on the road of the world which is expected to increase to around 26 million by 2030. Norway has the highest share of electric vehicles in the world followed by Iceland and Sweden which happens to be on the top 15 list of least polluted countries in the world. No one knows what the future holds, but it’s clear that EVs have a great potential for a more sustainable future.
By Saumya Gupta