Behind the Wheel of an Electric Vehicle: A First-Hand Experience
Electric vehicles have changed transportation in more ways than one. Car ownership is a very popular and practical concept, so it is unlikely to go away anytime soon. That is why we need electric vehicles to fill the void between public systems that are excellent for navigating between and within cities with little environmental footprint and car ownership that allows individuals to go anywhere whenever they want.
With EVs, individual car ownership is not as damaging to our environment as it is now. Electric vehicles have seen immense development year after year, but in many ways they still fall behind cars with internal combustion engine. The main disadvantage is inconvenience of having to recharge your car once in several hundred miles / kilometers. ICEs can travel much longer distances, and require only minutes to refuel.
One area where EVs have an advantage is driving experience.
Teslas are famous for their powertrain, and generally amazing driving
experience. In this article, we want to discuss what it’s like to drive an EV.
Article will be based on my personal experien
ce behind the wheel of Tesla Model 3.
Speaking of this car, details like new model 3 US release date are still unclear.
The Unmatched Driving Experience
We can try to describe differences between EVs and ICEs, but ultimately I believe you have to drive an electric vehicle to truly understand. As a driver, you can instantly feel you are dealing with a totally different machine. Thanks to immediate torque, my electric Tesla Model 3 has a much faster acceleration than any internal combustion engine vehicle in the same price range.
As soon as you step on the pedal, car immediately takes off. This feels more powerful and makes driving an EV a lot of fun.
In addition to fast takeoff, not having an internal combustion engine (combustion is the keyword here) means overall much more quiet driving experience. I was driving 2022 Model 3, which is quiet as it is. But newly released 2024 Model 3 significantly improved the interior. Tesla replaced half the parts to soundproof the car and block out distracting outside noise. As a result, reviewers claim that driving the 2024 Model 3 is an insanely pleasant experience.
Going from normal ICE cars you’re used to to an EV is a significant transition and takes some time to adapt. The biggest change is the need to refuel. EVs need to recharge once every 300-400 miles (in best case scenario), so long trips are difficult to make. On the other hand, Tesla is constantly introducing newer, faster superchargers. Soon enough, you might be able to recharge 200-300 miles’ worth of energy in a matter of 5-10 minutes. This may be too optimistic, but considering improvements in the latest years, we believe it to be realistic.
Driving a fully charged EV feels much better than a car where you are often running out of fuel. It is cheaper too. If your home electricity is relatively cheap, you can leave your EV to charge overnight for little to no price. This might cost as little as 10 times less than refueling your ICE vehicle. Many families in sunny states like California use solar panels, which generate a lot of energy, especially in the summer. You can either opt to sell excess energy to the power grid for very little price, or use it yourself. It’s almost always to keep the electricity for yourself and recharge your car.
It eliminates frequent trips to the gas station, saving you time and making your daily commute more efficient. However, long trips do require some planning to ensure charging stations are along your route. But with the increasing investment in charging infrastructure, accessibility is continually improving.
Despite all the benefits, the primary reason for getting an EV is the reduced environmental footprint. EVs are much cleaner, does not use fossil fuels, does not cause significant pollution, and helps cities maintain clean air on roads.
In last few years, we’ve heard several counter arguments to cleanliness of electric vehicles. Many claim that manufacturing electric cars causes enough environmental footprint to offset any advantages of cleaner engine. It is true that at this moment, manufacturing an EV leads to more environmental footprint. It is also true that not all sources of electricity are created equal. In regions where electricity is generated from burning coal, driving an EV isn’t as clean as we’d like it to be.
Despite these challenges, numerous studies have confirmed that electric vehicles are still cleaner ones with the internal combustion engine. Not to mention the fact that developments in renewable energy and cleaner manufacturing process mean that in 5-10 years, ‘dirty’ sources of coal or inefficient manufacturing aren’t going to be as big of a problem as they are now.
EVs can be an expensive option. Internal combustion engines and vehicle design have been perfected for more than hundred years. Electric vehicles only appeared on the market several years ago. So it will take few years before production lines, and engineering expertise shifts to manufacturing EVs efficiently. It is true that EVs are more expensive for now, but eventually, EVs will become cheaper to buy as well. Obviously, electric vehicles are cheaper to drive in the long term. This will be just a nice cherry on top to further reduce expenses in the long run.
EVs also require less maintenance and constant attention than ICEs. Long-term viability of batteries is a significant concern. You can resolve this by doing your research and buying from trusted manufacturers only. Here is also a review of Tesla Model 3 black interior and how it stacks up against white interior.
The EV Future
Based on everything we mentioned here, it’s safe to say that EVs are here to stay. Improvements to batteries and better design are likely to increase maximum ranges as well. Improvements to electricity generation and manufacturing processes are likely to further reduce cars’ environmental footprint as well.
Getting an EV means contributing to a brighter future. At the same time, you retain the individual freedom of owning a car, so you can go anywhere you want. If the place where you want to go doesn’t have good roads, look out for Cybertruck, which can take you anywhere you want to go.