As a rideshare driver, we are always looking for ways to save some money. Even though the price of gasoline has fallen, one way to save money might be to switch over to an electric vehicle and avoid gas costs altogether. But is it really worth it?
If you are concerned about the environment and are trying to go green then going electric is an obvious choice. However, the cost to purchase an electric car with a similar range to a typical gas car is significantly more expensive than a gas car. A Tesla base Model 3 is $38,000 excluding taxes and fees. In comparison, a Toyota Camry base model is $24,000. (There are several states that offer incentives and rebates for purchasing an electric vehicle so there may be some savings there.)
When it comes to the cost of running an electric vs a gas powered vehicle, you start to see where you are saving money. EnergySage posted a 2018 study from the University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute that found that electric vehicles cost less than half as much to operate as gas-powered cars: $485 per year for an electric vehicle versus $1,117 for a gas powered vehicle. Of course the savings will vary based on the area of the country you live in regarding both gasoline and electric pricing.
There is definitely savings to be found when it comes to maintenance as well. Owning an electric car means few moving parts and no engine corrosion. According to Enel X, the average yearly savings on maintenance for an electric vehicle owner is approximately $800 a year. If you add up the savings from not buying gas to these maintenance savings, you are looking at a total savings of $1,432 per year or $8,592 over 6 years, which is the average length of time Americans tend to keep a vehicle they purchased.
There are other things to consider when going electric like distance anxiety. Because there isn’t a charging station on every corner, people do get fearful as they see their battery charge begin to decline, and this can take some time to get used to. Also, charging your battery does take time. It could take 30 minutes or more to get a full charge at a quick charging location and other facilities could take even longer. You need to plan your lunch and maybe a quick nap around getting a charge!
For many drivers in densely populated areas it may be time to switch. However, if you live in a part of the country where gasoline is cheap, I would hold off for a few more years.
Tomorrow: Have you received your masks and wipes from Uber?