Analyzing Potential Trends Of Electric Vehicle Use By Consumers

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In order to effectively analyze potential trends of electric vehicle use by consumers in the state of Kansas, we must first understand the technology. What are its advantages that could be appealing to potential consumers? What are its disadvantages? Understanding the technological strengths and limitations of current options in the market will help us arrive at a better conclusion when we compare with consumer needs and preferences. Electric vehicles have several advantages that have gained a lot of attention across the country. The most widely touted advantage from a societal perspective is reduced emissions, since electric vehicles do not burn fossil fuels for power generation. However, if the electricity source used to charge the electric vehicle uses fossil fuels to generate electricity, then an electric vehicle may not provide an emissions benefit over a conventionally powered vehicle. (Benefits, 2016) At an individual consumer level, reduced fuel costs compared to conventionally powered vehicles is most often cited as the primary benefit. (Slavin) In fact, when comparing cost of fuel between both types of vehicles, some electric vehicles can exceed the equivalent of 100 mpg. (Benefits, 2016) Although fuel economy can lead to lower fuel costs, the upfront cost of an electric vehicle is often quite a bit more expensive than a traditionally powered vehicle. The savings in fuel costs may not be enough to offset the additional cost to purchase the vehicle. The cost of electric vehicles is expected to decline as the technology improves and manufacturing gains economies of scale. To help offset the additional purchase cost, the federal government, as well as many states, offers tax credits and incentives that can reduce... ... middle of paper ... ...ery replacements every few years. Battery life has steadily improved in recent years and most modern batteries can last for the life of the vehicle. Proponents of electric vehicles argue that maintenance of an electric vehicle is significantly less than a traditional vehicle since regular oil changes and emission system maintenance is not required. They estimate a savings of about 35%. (Berman, 2016) However, critics argue that service shops for electric vehicles are still considered specialty and charge a premium for services while not yet being widely available. Comparing the advantages and disadvantages as discussed, it easy easy to see why the electric-vehicle market is still in the growth stage and has yet to reach its full potential. With time and future technology advances, we are certain the market will become more viable for manufacturers and consumers.

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