According to energy.gov, it can cost less than half as much to travel the same distance in an EV than a conventional internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle on average.
But when it comes to determining how much your vehicle will cost, just factoring in the cost to power your vehicle won’t tell the whole story.
Total Cost of Ownership, or TCO, includes the purchase price of a particular asset, plus operating costs over the asset’s lifespan. For a vehicle, this can include regular maintenance, fuel costs, insurance, and several other factors.
We calculated the TCO of the B1 and a similarly priced ICE SUV over a period of 10 years to see how we stacked up.
Incentives: There are many tax or other incentives in the market for those who purchase an EV. We included the standard federal tax credit in our calculation, but other state or local credits might result in different cost savings for different drivers.
Fuel: Generally, electricity rates are much lower and more stable than gas prices. Many EV drivers report that their fueling costs with electricity are just 1/4 to 1/3 of what their gas costs were. However, increases are difficult to predict and so this is not a huge driver of the cost differential. The nice thing about electricity is prices are regulated and tend to be pretty stable compared to oil prices which are highly volatile and subject to geopolitical risk.
Maintenance: Regular maintenance is to be expected for any vehicle, and multiple sources will suggest that EV drivers can save between 20%-80% in yearly maintenance spending vs an ICE vehicle.
Here’s a break down of our calculations:
|Vehicle Life||10 years||10 years|
|Average fuel/electricity prices||$0.10/kWh||$3.00/gallon*|
|Average fuel/electricity price|
% increase per year
|Annual Insurance Cost||$2,400||$2,400|
*Average fuel price based on gas and diesel prices one year ago