This is an essay about some common Electric Vehicle (EV) myths. It seems to be topical at present.
I am a long time electric vehicle/renewable energy enthusiast and by extension a climate change nut and Greeny, Lefty, latte sipping geek. I am also a financially conservative small business battler who works long hours. No neat political box for me. I am on my second home made EV now. It's a True Blue Beaut Ute, the kind of ute the Prime Minister says will cease to exist if electrics are pushed upon the beleaguered population. Apparently I'm stealing peoples weekends. Most times when people find out that my car is electric they are positive and ask questions, but I still hear and read of the sceptics in the background. So, on to the most common myths:
1) EVs don't have the grunt. Please do check Youtube where EVs are now routinely dragging Ferraris and even racing V8 Supercars. They are out-pulling giant SUV trucks on icy roads. On the track unmodified EVs are now lapping faster than tricked up Impreza's. Even my street legal jalopy is faster than your average small car.
2) EVs won't go the distance. Back in 2005 when I converted my first car to electric that was true. With Lead Acid batteries it had a 40km range. That got extended to 100km with the first Lithium battery pack in 2007. Now my current home made EV goes 200km on a charge and I could easily double that with more batteries. Five times the driving range in 14 years, that's progress. 400km plus range is now common with commercial EVs. It's only getting better.
3) EVs are slow to refuel. I fill up a couple of times a week from the sun during the day at work. It costs nothing, free driving. Time is no issue. Sure I paid for the solar panels on the roof of my business, it costs less over time to do that than using electricity from the grid. The latest EV charging stations will charge at a rate greater than 1000km of range per hour. With EVs you don't have to wait by your car in a smelly, noisy, dirty service station trying not to get petrol on your shoes while a queue of cars forms behind you. You can go and do your shopping.
4) EVs don't sound great like a V8. This is a good time to talk about noise pollution. You may have been trained since birth to love the noise of your Twin System V8 with Hot Dogs or your Straight Through Pipe motorbike but does your neighbour? Some blokes will smirk and say “...but thats what I love about it”. Way to go man... Give 'em heaps! How does that make the world a better place? Maybe it is time for a rethink on what is a great sounding car.
5) EVs are so expensive. So is your iPhone, but I don't see many folks with $50 models. Much cooler to have a $1000+ model to show off. This is a case of where your priorities lie. The lifetime cost of owning an EV is lowered greatly because there are negligible servicing costs. Tyres and wiper blades mainly. Car dealers hate this aspect. How about the cost of fuel? Regenerative braking? What is that anyway? It means your car stores energy back in to your battery when you hit the brakes for longer range. You don't make diesel when you put your foot on the brake in a fossil fuel car, you make heat and fine black dust, the nano-particle kind that sticks in our lungs.
6) EVs need coal fired electricity. Not if you charge from the sun. That is the magic. At any rate an EV charging from the dirtiest Victorian brown coal fired power plant is still more efficient than a late model petrol car. Coal plants actually have more stringent emissions regulations than your average car and EVs are particularly good at converting stored electricity into kilometres. Apart from the truly toxic tailpipe emissions excess Carbon Dioxide is a pollutant and the less we can make of it the better.
7) The batteries use mined materials, will wear out and cost a fortune to replace. A lithium battery pack does cost alot more than a petrol tank and is the reason an EV costs more to purchase than a petrol car. The batteries use copper, aluminium, lithium and steel among other things. These components are 100% recyclable. Not only that, they are so valuable that no one in their right mind would send them to landfill. When battery recycling becomes a mature industry the cost of batteries will fall markedly because only energy (cheap renewable energy of course) is required to reprocess them into new and better batteries. Fossil fuels, all of them, are zero percent recyclable, up in smoke, leave it to the trees and seas to sort out. Ultimately that will be the reason that fossil fuels will be phased out, too expensive in every respect. A Tesla Model S averages around 250,000 km to degrade to 85% usable capacity. They have an 8 year battery warranty too. It is only going to get better.
8) Here's the latest EV sceptic favourite: EVs don't pay for the roads through Fuel Excise. The sad fact is that in Australia only about 25% of the fuel excise collected is directly spent on roads. The rest goes into general government revenue. Of course I am happy to pay my share for road infrastructure (just don't make it retrospective) but seriously lets start talking about an excise on tail pipe emissions while we are at it. This is the air we breathe and it is time we started cleaning up our act.
I can and am willing do it, so can you. I'm not rich but I am doing what I can to make a liveable future for my descendants. The inertia theory of waiting for others to jump first is a recipe for getting left behind. Lets go for it! Give this government a policy headache. Prioritise electric cars/busses and trucks, electric bikes, put solar panels and wind farms up. Use Australia's greatest resources, the sun and our beautiful people to make a pile of innovative industries and renewable jobs. Why do we continue to hand over our hard earned cash to aggressive foreign countries that oppress their citizens and fight with their neighbours? Something to consider next time you pump the gas pedal.
In the weekend paper the honourable Minister for Energy says that introducing emissions standards - and by extension EVs- will disproportionately impact the poor people of Forrest Electorate, 95% of whom rely on their cars for commuting. Since when did oil companies take a genuine interest in poor people? Fossil fuels are amazingly cheap because of the incumbent infrastructure developed over 200 years. Oil is the capitalists dream. Keep the direct internal costs low (capital and labour) and externalise the cost of climate change. Governments can pay for that. Burn it, its gone and the punters have to come back for more. Bonanza! These companies support politicians that lobby to maintain the status quo through continued negative campaigning along the style of “Great Big New Tax”. In my estimation its time the external cost started being paid for at its source where it comes out of the ground. That money can be used to assist to poor people all over the world affected by the cost of climate change and changing to a clean energy future.
How about the great Aussie tradition of going bush. Surely this will be a show stopper for EVs. All that diesel that gets trucked around the state for off-roaders. I don't know much about the Warakurna Roadhouse in remote WA, but I am willing to bet they have plenty of one thing. Sun! In the future of motoring, the sun equals fuel and we have a free shot on goals in our country.
One last question. Which large trans-national corporations are supporting climate scientists? We have told that climate change hysteria is a hoax promoted by self interested scientists who are chasing funding. It seems to me that corporate funding is much more skewed to supporting climate change sceptics, the people who say “it's all ok, nothing bad is happening, just keep digging and burning”. Governments spend the royalties on buying votes today and leave the mess for for our kids, that's not me. Rod Dilkes 21 April 2019. ... See MoreSee Less
Awsome soapbox Rod...Hey all just a reminder if you didn't see my other posts ...
whatever the outcome of this political game it is a great oppertunity to educate the masses of the pro and cons of this Tech...
**Flap your gums**
in Central Australia we decided to do a come n try day.(beleve me we have a hard crowd here!)..EVs are the hot topic and a massive oppertunity to create an awsome industry (Tritium for EG known world wide for their chargers but unknown in Oz! )...
Great article addressing all the myths and rumours in an intelligent, well researched manner.
The truth will be revealed, now is the turning point
Whats the current price to convert a jumbuck ute to EV
Spot on Rod ! Why on earth would anyone with any moral and ethical values, want to burn stolen blood soaked Middle Eastern Oil, sold by Psychopathic head chopping Saudis, and Sociopathic Oil conglomerates, refined using copious amounts of energy, shipped from the other side of the planet in Ships using Bunker Oil, the most toxic form of propulsion available, then burn it to drive around a vehicle with a comparatively inefficient conversion of energy to distance travelled, to live a selfish, wasteful, unsustainable lifestyle. Americans, Canadians, Australians, and New Zealanders have the worst global footprint. Rant over.
An example of an EV Power engineering project. Custom designed and manufactured in-house. Portable 102V 200Ah (270kg) battery pack for a commercial customer. Complete with Battery Management System. Designed for high ambient temperature, dusty and potentially wet conditions. ... See MoreSee Less
At EV Power we do a variety of projects. This one for a mining company involves the design and fabrication of a drilling operators console. IP65 protection. It may not look like much but we really put some work into it. ... See MoreSee Less
Interesting customer project. Two guys took one of our standard 100V EVKits and put it in a motor cycle to take to Lake Gairdner Speed Week. They managed to crack a ton (100mph) on their first attempt. Congratulations Stuart M. & Martin G. ! ... See MoreSee Less
Very pleased too. Thanks to Rod and James. On the first night with our fridge and inverter running the batteries got down to 75% SoC but always delivered 13 volts. By midday the next day our solar panels had got them back up to 100% SoC and 14 volts.
Deb Heathcote this looks familiar or am I mistaken
160 Ah, replaced tired 420 Ah, less capacity but should be enough for starters. Plenty of room to add another should the need arise. Thanks again to Rod and Jamie for their advice and a cost effective solution.