Electric car vs. Internal combustion engines: for whom is it worth switching to an e-car??

Electric car versus combustion engine: For whom is the switch worthwhile??

25. January 2022 – 11:18 a.m

by Mireilla Zirpins

We see them more and more often – at the charging stations on the parking decks of large supermarkets or at the power outlets in front of our homes: electric cars. With expensive gasoline prices, more and more people are asking themselves: Could this be something for us too? And when is the change worthwhile? What happens when you dare to make the switch, you can see in the video above. The Schuster family did the everyday check.

Why an electric car? Is it environmentally friendly?

They are considered emission-free and thus ecologically acceptable: vehicles with electric motors. In fact, gasoline and diesel vehicles don’t fare so well with all the noise they blow out of their exhausts. But there is also criticism of the sustainability of the Stromer, because the production of the drive batteries, which are among other things because of their production conditions and problematic substances such as lithium, manganese or cobalt in the criticism, is greenhouse gas intensive. However, some manufacturers are making efforts to change this. CO2 is also released in the generation of the electricity used to power electric motors, unless you buy green power or feed your home charging station with solar energy from the roof. This is where opinions differ – depending on the political and ecological position. How environmentally friendly a vehicle is depends on the model and the electricity mix used.

Less “noise pollution” from electric cars

Noise is also an important factor. Driving an electric car is not only quieter in your own car, but also produces less “noise pollution” outside. Because the constant sound from motor vehicles not only massively affects wildlife. Studies such as one by the Federal Environment Agency from 2018 show that people also suffer greatly from the influence of sound. 75 percent of Germans feel affected by traffic noise at home. The consequences can be serious: tinnitus, sleep problems, heart disease. The newer electric cars are so quiet that they even have to emit artificial noises at speeds below 20 km/h to warn the blind, the elderly, children and cyclists.

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E-car leasing? Subsidies also possible here

Until now, e-cars have usually been significantly more expensive than the same model in the combustion version. But by the end of 2025, there will be very attractive purchase incentives. A mix of government incentives and dealer bonuses lets us save up to 9.000 euros for electric cars and up to 6.Save 750 on externally rechargeable plug-in hybrids. You can have all the options calculated for you at the dealership, because sometimes the electric car is even cheaper. Even when purchasing a used e-car, there are subsidy options available.

Those who do not yet want to buy a new e-car because of the progressing development of batteries can alternatively lease a car. RTL Auto Leasing* offers a wide range of electric models – simply click on “Filter” make the appropriate adjustments. Leasing is also subsidized, the subsidy amount can be apportioned to the monthly installment.

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Costs: Is an electric car really still more expensive than a gasoline or diesel car??

Internal combustion engine or electric vehicle, which is now more favorable? To do this, you have to compare the energy price for the kilometer driven: How much electricity or fuel does the vehicle consume per 100 kilometers?? What do insurance, tax and maintenance cost?? The ADAC has tested gasoline and. Diesel variants compared with electric or hybrid versions of popular car models. It can be said that the maintenance and operating costs of electric models are often lower in the long term – fewer wearing parts, no oil changes and usually lower consumption costs per kilometer.

Another bonus is that cars with electric license plates are exempt from vehicle tax for ten years from the date of initial registration – a provision that, as things stand at the moment, applies to purchases made up to 31.12.2030 applies. There are other interesting tax regulations for companies.

Overall, electric models are becoming more and more attractive in terms of price thanks to the eco-rebate, falling purchase prices and higher production figures. This is also reflected in the statistics.

Extremely long charging time for e-cars? Not necessarily!

The most important argument of the electric car opponents is the long charging time with a relatively short range. In fact, a purely electric car is not so well suited for longer vacation trips. If you want to race from Cologne to the Mediterranean in ten hours, you’ll probably have trouble doing it with an electric car. Even if the battery is used gently and the car is driven at a leisurely pace, it has to be completely recharged after half the distance at the latest. And it takes time, even if the new models and charging stations are much faster than before.

At fast-charging stations, this can be done in less than an hour – if the vehicle is equipped with the appropriate charging technology. And then the battery cannot be filled up to 100 percent with the turbo method. At standard public charging stations or the wall box in front of the house, it can take between two and six hours, and even longer with household electricity. However, slower charging is said to be better for the life of the battery.

The charging time also depends on the vehicle model. Anyone who wants to make another trip with an e-vehicle must therefore plan well in advance if they want to take advantage of a longer break for charging and research in advance where this would be possible and with what power or. in which time the local station makes the car roadworthy again, while he has an extensive lunch or explores the intermediate destination on foot.

Range of the e-car: How far do the “electric” cars go??

The lack of range of the vehicles is also often criticized. There are indeed car models that don’t get 200 kilometers on one charge. However, this is quite sufficient if you use the vehicle as a second car and only go shopping twice a week or take the children to sports. And he goes on vacation in the family van – gasoline or diesel.

Or if you have a charging facility close to your home or workplace and do not usually travel long distances. But the latest models also manage 450-500 kilometers or some even more in the high-end vehicles, depending on the driving style. This makes you much more flexible. Or you can opt for a hybrid vehicle (see below) that only runs on electricity for short distances.

Are you still driving or are you already using electricity??

Whether one drives well with an electric car or is better served with a vehicle with internal combustion engine, depends on the model and above all on the personal lifestyle. Basically, electric cars are not yet the first choice for people who only drive long distances, such as salespeople. And not all models are available as e-versions; especially station wagons and panel vans still have a lot of room for improvement.

If you live in a very rural area and have to drive for everything, you may find the longer and more frequent charging annoying. On the other hand, he probably has to fill up his diesel more often than others. This is of course faster. If you are reasonably organized and know where to find charging sockets in the immediate vicinity, you can definitely make your rural life electric if you opt for a vehicle with a longer range. Only perhaps not quite so spontaneously.

And even a sales representative, who often has to travel long distances and return the same day, may be able to recharge at the customer’s site. If you ask nicely, you have a topic of conversation right away. Because charging options also determine whether an electric motor is the right drive for us. Those who own a property can even have the installation of their own wallbox subsidized if they purchase green or eco-electricity. Who lives in a floor apartment, must move out for charging. In return, however, he may even have no electricity costs if he uses free charging points.

hybrid, gas& Hydrogen: Alternative drives for those who want to protect the environment

If you can’t decide between combustion engine and electric motor, you can have both in one: in a hybrid vehicle.

There are two types here: On the one hand Hybrid vehicles, which do not require an external charging station and charge their battery themselves while driving. With them one can drive only short distances 100% electrically. However, the battery supports the gasoline engine when starting or accelerating.

Plug-in hybrids on the other hand, are equipped with a battery that is charged externally – for example, at the domestic socket. They are also more likely to manage inner-city trips with ranges around 50 kilometers purely on an electric basis. For longer distances, these vehicles then switch to fuel.

Also on the rise are vehicles with Gas drive and usually have a CO2 balance that can keep up with e-cars or electric hybrids. Natural gas vehicles are also available as hybrid variants – with an additional gasoline tank for emergencies in addition to the gas reservoir.

Another alternative are Hydrogen Cars. However, there are still very few models on the market and no dense network of hydrogen filling stations. Their environmental footprint is the best together with pure electric cars – provided they are powered by renewable energies.

Who is now still not quite sure which model is the right one, can test it without obligation at car sharing. Many fleets now rely on e- or hybrid models. You can just try it out and then decide if you want to drive it permanently.

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