Why drive an electric vehicle?

Fun to drive & easier on the planet, EVs proving attractive

There's nothing quite like driving an electric vehicle for the first time. Even the least expensive models take you to a new place, where driving is quiet and surprisingly fast, especially from a dead stop.

The question is whether the many pros of driving an electric vehicle outweigh the cons that can include everything from limited choices of vehicle size, to the comparatively high purchase price, to the availability of charging in some areas of B.C.. We cover some of the cons elsewhere on bchydro.com, but here, we're sticking to the benefits.

6 great things about driving electric

It's arguable in some areas of the world, where electricity generation is from coal or other fossil fuels, that driving an EV doesn't make much of a difference in carbon emissions. But not in B.C. – last year 98% of the electricity we generated was clean.

That's why electric vehicles are part of B.C.'s Climate Leadership Plan.

Electricity is not only cleaner, it's a lot less expensive. Most drivers of electric cars in B.C. do the bulk of their charging at home or at work, where you're charged at our regular residential rate (or perhaps even for free at work).

At BC Hydro rates, a Nissan Leaf can go 100 km for $3 in electricity costs.

Brakes in an electric vehicle could last 300,000 km or longer before requiring service. There are no oil changes. One study concluded that, over an eight-year-period, maintenance on an electrical car is about a third cheaper than maintenance on a car with an internal combustion engine.

There are just fewer parts to cause problems in a relatively simple electric motor, something Ford had fun with by listing all the parts that its Focus Electric doesn't have.

It's just a different experience, from all the efficiency information on your dashboard, to how quiet the car is, to how quickly you accelerate off the line at a stoplight.

The B.C.-based emotive website sings the praises of driving electric, from how quick and fun they are to drive to how you get to rediscover music in a quite vehicle.

The BC Government announced in 2016 that electric vehicle drivers can get a sticker that allows them to use our HOV lanes, even if there's only one person in the car.

Public charging stations often serve as convenient parking (sometimes free, for both charging and parking). Just make sure you practise proper etiquette by vacating the spot once your car is fully charged.

Depending on the impression you're trying to make, driving an electric car can really pay off. And you're a visible evangelist for sustainability.

It's the antithesis of the Rolling Coal movement, in which drivers of diesel trucks intentionally tweak their vehicles to maximize the spewing of black smoke.