Electric Car and Petroleum Conspiracy

Usually it is normal to listen to comments or even news transmiting the idea electric cars evolution is slow due to lobbys or pressure groups (Petroleum companies, cars manufacturers, etc) interested in blocking electric car success. Other stakeholders transmit the opposite message about an inminent electric car success as soon as small problems are solved.

In this post we will try to clarify these ideas and demonstrate electric car way is (and will be) tough because of important problems needed to solved and assumed by final users.

We will consider electric car is widely used and there is no additional cost because it is a new technology. Assuming the price is the same as a diesel or gasoline car we will analyze other factors like consumption.

To evaluate consumption we are not going to consider taxes. It is expected goberments will apply same taxes to both electric and combustions cars. Price is not the same in all countries but we could consider 0.15 USD as the price of a KWh and 0.70 USD the price of diesel or gasoline (both are close similar). Electric car consumption use to be 20 KWh every 100 Km. In the case of combustion car we could consider 8 liters every 100 Km.

Electric:    0.15 USD x 20 KWh = 3 USD

Combustion:     0.70 USD x 8 = 5.6 USD

Assuming car duration about 200.000 Km electric car provide a cost reduction of 5.200 USD. Cost reduction is higher because electric car maintenance is cheaper. There is no clutch and brakes have less spending as electric car recover energy when braking. Additionally there is no filters to change.

Then electric car looks interesting after this calculations. It is a simple one but it is really important as it justify if electric car is profitable or not. Additionally we have to consider inconveniences indicated below.


-Autonomy: The biggest battery in an electric car is equiped in Tesla cars with a 90 KWh capacity allowing around 500 Km maybe not enough for a travel. We would need to recharge during our travel adding some hours.

-Chargin speed: a combustion car is fully charged in 10 minutes. For an electric car we have to consider at least 2 hours. Without consider battery life we could need 45 KW installation to charge our car in two hours and we have to do it carefully. Normal installations use to have 4 or 5 KW and we would need at least 10 hours for driving 250 Km.

-Charging place: Electric car charging takes long time. We have to park our car during long time and this place should be our home or our work. It is not expected all the streets plenty of charging points. Not all the people have a parking place at home or work.

-Self-discharge: diesel and gasoline are so stable. We can maintain a car stopped during months in the street and our car will be available to be used anytime. Batteries have self-discharge and it depends on temperature. A fully charge battery could be empty in some weeks.

For these problems there is no solution currently and they limit possible electric car users. For most of the people cost reduction doesn’t justify all these inconveniences. Electric car users use to be anxious because of the long time needed for charging them.

Of course this is the current situation and technology continue evolving trying to solve all these problems. Additionally petroleum price is changing continuously and it is expected more expensive long term. Depending on petroleum price we could have a different view about these inconveniences.

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One Response to Electric Car and Petroleum Conspiracy

  1. Pingback: Temas Tecnológicos » El coche eléctrico y la conspiración de las petroleras

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