Buying an Electric Vehicle in the US

I was at Electrify Expo this weekend in Washington, DC. I met a community member (and heck of a nice guy) named Don at the event when he swung by the SOLIX booth.

(Interested in upcoming expos? Click to see where they are and to get a free ticket for you and your +1.)

Among the things Don and I chatted about in the sustainable energy arena was the Inflation Reduction Act, which President Joe Biden modified to include an electric vehicle tax credit.

If you live in the US, and you’re planning to buy a new EV, you could get a tax credit of up to $7,500 this year. Buying a used EV could bring a tax credit of $4,000 this year.

Even better? Starting in 2024, if you buy through a dealer you could knock that $7500 off the price of your car because the Inflation Reduction Act of 2023 allows dealers to collect your tax credit directly from the IRS.

To learn more about the clean vehicle credit, I read this piece on NerdWallet, a very reputable source for consumer-oriented financial news.

While I’m definitely more interested in EV today than I was even six months ago, I’m not sure I’ll be swinging a new car payment next year. That used option sounds pretty appealing though, even if it doesn’t qualify me for a $7500 credit.

What do you think? Does this impact your consideration of an EV at all?


We already had a Chevy Bolt EUV, but wanted a second EV. One stipulation was that it needed to be able to pull our A frame camper. We were going to get the F-150 Lightning but when they raised the price by like 50% that was no longer reasonable for us. In January Tesla slashed their prices of the Model Y and the delivery window of it was still in the time frame for the guaranteed $7,500 tax credit (now the Government has all the stipulations in place). So the EV credit did influence us to sell our Minivan and to get our second EV.

Big discussion here in Germany about e-cars.
As long the batteries are not satisfying I would not do.

What I always see here :
Big heavy SUVs based on battery power.
That not logical at all.

There are not so many public loading points to be found.
And last not least
The environmental balance of e-cars is worse than normal ones.

The question is how long will such a battery last at least?

If you’re seriously interested in EV then get one sooner than later as all the raw materials contained within are going to go up in cost.

If / when you get an EV then still try to use it the least so it lasts the longest possible time.

Even better is keep your old vehicle and barely use it as the environmental cost in manufacturing of an EV requires a minimum of 100,000 miles before the reduced driving emissions offsets the emissions caused in it’s manufacturing.

I own a diesel car, I’ve not driven for 2 months and not flown for over a year, and I worked with local council months ago to retain the bus and met with local MP on Saturday on house building plans to be kept on public transport routes.

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The biggest two limiting factors for me is:

  1. The lack of availablility of a lot of electric models locally
  2. The need for range and lack of charging stations on our typical long distance routes.

Really wish it made practical sense for our family.

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… and the lack of electrical grid capacity to get supply from generation to where is demand.

e.g. California (where I lived for many years) the local wires weren’t thick enough to carry the increased electrical energy which was previously fed through liquid fuel pipes and fuel trucks. You have to have each cable at below 50% capacity so if a path failed (E.g. fire damage) the redundant path didn’t itself then fail (as happened I think in Canada).

In UK the issue is immediately not enough capacity at the local substation and substations overheating and turning off so EV increase is lowering power reliability. When a consumer gets a high capacity EV charging capacity in, noone is submitting (either FYI or asking permission) to local utility company to validate and predict demand.

So it’s generation, distribution and supply all needs to scale together.

I worked for a electrical distribution company also and the vision was of a “smart home” where your car would be plugged in a lot of time but only recharged for the subset of the time there was excess supply and not when excess demand. That idea is 15+ years old and still not reality.

I’m currently working in energy generation to feed into the grid for future EV but it needs others including consumers to publicised EV purchase decisions with the distribution so it’s not overloaded.

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Of course one could install such charging station in his own house.

BUT eg. if you live in a huge apartment house.
No underground parking.
Where to charge the car?
There are some public charging stations here in our surrounding area,
but only a poor few.

I remember that price hike on the F150, which is like one of my dream truck models with or without electric.

Does the Tesla tow your Aframe? How did y’all manage that if the van is gone?

We announced a whole-house energy solution at RE[Charge], and I think it goes on pre-sale in September. Delivery (in the US) in January … so hopefully this helps a lot of folks make a good move. I don’t have all the details on the product yet, but I’m excited to learn more, and of course I’ll share it here … because I know my UK friend loves the news in the US, lol!

That’s the issue precisely here. It’s also why hybrid cars are so popular in my town. In the American West, traveling by car often makes more sense than flying.

Same. Well, that and money. I love having a car that’s completely paid for and still looks good and runs well.

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There’s a workaround coming.

Self driving cars.

They drive to a fast charging spot pre-booked and then return to your home parking spot for the configured time.

So you go home, tell the car it’s not needed til say 8am and during the night as a different car leaves the charging spot your car goes there and later returns.

It will work in places where the route is known to the car. That means a charging spot can become fully used 24x7.

Yes familiar with it.

You’re serving apartments where can put battery and solar on balcony as well as larger homes. That makes usefulness for solar, storing energy (from solar or from grid) to handle outages and can charge your car.

In the context of say apartment building the cars co-operate to move around in the car park so need just enough charging points, say 100 cars, each need charging every 3 days, so 33 cars/night, if charging took 2 hours and average car parked 12 hours you only need 6 charging bays to service 100 cars

The building could then lease you the car and then do it as a package with apartment rent and they select a set of car sizes configured to work cooperatively in the parking garage.

You’d also then not need to park, you just step out at foyer and it does the rest.

Self driving self parking lots can be significantly smaller as don’t need space to side for people to get in/out nor headroom as noone is standing up.

UK issues similar.

BBC News - Electric cars are the future, but is the UK ready?

The average age for my gender to begin to have mobility issues is around 19 years above my current age so this needs all sorting by 2042.

I’m working on systems ready around 2030.

So I’m ok on my bike til I can’t bike. Touch wood.

As long as they can fix the multiple issues places like San Francisco are experiencing where they are blocking traffic and emergency crews amongst other issues.

Oh I know the challenges but it’s a simpler problem for charging as it can be between known places on known routes for the home-charging link.

All we need is a space program which mines Asteroids, Nuclear fusion, and then all our woes are fixed. Well for a while but that’s a different story.

Yup, the Model Y Long Range can tow 3,500 LBS. So it was practical for us to get that with the normal driving range of 320 miles and then being able to tow for camping trips. The Chevy Bolt EUV we really liked for the price and as our first EV, but its has 247 mile range.

The only other towing car we were looking at was the Fisker Ocean Ultra due to any other vehicle (essentially trucks) were $80K+ and/or barely had range higher than the Chevy Bolt we had. Our van was getting older too, so time also played a factor too.

We will see how the Chevy Silverado & Cybertruck stack up in price/range. Knowing already its going to be awhile till we can get our hands on one, but maybe have one of those replace our Bolt in the future.

I’m more referring to charging stations on the way to a destination. At least around where I live, driving 300 miles roundtrip on a Saturday is very common (for a lot of families). For instance, I have to drive to one to two places a month that is 150 miles one way. There are no working charging spots at all on the way, unless you deviate 20 miles outside of the direct path. Those, additionally, are not fast charging stations. The grid just simply isn’t where it needs to be outside of major cities in the midwest and south US that I travel.

While not saying you shouldn’t , I’m predicting you couldn’t .

The reserves of fossil fuel isn’t enough to cover til a renewable alternative.

It’s not really been discussed enough.

A brief period of experiencing the early 20th century is quite likely.

Seems the situation is a little bit better regarding
public charging possibilities in Europe as fai I know…

There is another aspect : The risk of fire of the batteries.

Not only on this container ship often batteries of vehicles are catching fire.

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