Electric vehicles (“EVs”) are fundamentally different from conventional vehicles, running on a rechargeable battery pack rather than an internal combustion engine. New research has now uncovered that, compared to the average driver, EV drivers may also have different driving habits. At least according to a study of EV driving habits by researchers at the National Bureau of Economic Research (“NBER”).
The researchers discovered that compared to conventional gas-powered vehicles, electric vehicles drive half as many miles per year. EV drivers put roughly 5,300 miles every year on their cars, half as many miles as the average driver travels per year. However, this doesn’t mean EV owners are dissatisfied with their vehicles: a different survey by Plug In America found that 96% of EV drivers plan on buying an electric vehicle again as their next car.
To conduct the study on EV driving habits, researchers used data on home energy usage from Californian homes with electric vehicles. Although they could have sourced the charging information elsewhere, including from the drivers themselves or by checking odometer readings, automakers tend to keep that data private, making it difficult to obtain. However, the researchers found an ingenious way to obtain the data used in their study.
Researchers from UC Berkeley, University of California Davis, and the University of Chicago used odometer readings from 362,945 homes powered by Pacific Gas & Electric. They compared these meter readings with electric vehicle registration records from 2014 to 2017, finding a total of 57,290 registered EVs. After that, they checked to see how much extra electricity the homes with registered EVs used, arriving at 2.9 kilowatt-hours per day, or 0.12 (kWh).
Factoring in the California Air Resources Board’s estimate that more than 85% of EV charging happens at home, the researchers used this data to estimate that electric vehicles travel only 5,300 miles annually. According to the study’s authors, the results of this study pose questions about whether EV technology can replace most of the trips currently powered by fossil fuels. Electric vehicles, they say, may not be able to substitute for gas-powered as had been predicted.
EV drivers, however, appear to be happy with electric vehicles. The ability to charge at home cheaply ranks highly for EV buyers, and 96% of them would buy an EV as their next ride. The studyby Plug In America also found that while more than 90% of drivers charge at home regularly, they also charge in public stations. The National Bureau of Economic Research study still hasn’t been peer reviewed and is currently being circulated for discussion and comment.
That aside, many companies are making electric vehicles that target different consumer segments. For example, ev Transportation Services Inc. makes a light-duty commercial EV that is ideal for property maintenance crews because of its unique features, such as a three-wheel design which allows the vehicle execute a turn in narrow spaces.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to ev Transportation Services Inc. are available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/EVTS
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