Electric car: when is it worth buying??

Electric car from above

Anyone who needs a new car now will at least be confronted with the idea of an electric car. The big question for you is: Is it worth it?? We show you whether e-cars can keep up with internal combustion engines in terms of price, how much you save on refueling and whether they are more climate- and environmentally-friendly.

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Germans move their cars for just three quarters of an hour a day on average. This was the result of a mobility study in 2019 commissioned by the German Federal Ministry of Transport. The rest of the time, cars will be standing on their wheels. This begs the question: Do you really need your own car??

Of course, people who are not average also contribute to the average. You need the car. The family is here, the job is there, and the car is the only way to somehow reconcile everything.

For many, the question of electric mobility becomes concrete.

Anyone who is currently faced with the question of buying a car will certainly be confronted with the idea of an electric car. Because regardless of whether one is a fan of electromobility or not, the presence of the zeitgeist can no longer be ignored. He asks: Do you really want to spend money on an internal combustion car again now? Or is it time for change, for an electric car? Two questions are likely to be central to the decision-making process: Is the electric car the economically better decision and at what point is it the more climate- and environmentally-friendly alternative?

In the video, Polarstern founder Florian answers the most important questions about electromobility:

At what point an electric car is the better decision in terms of price.

A decisive argument that puts the zeitgeist to the test is the price. The criticism that electric cars are too expensive has now really lost its sell-by date. There are already plenty of inexpensive models.

With the increased environmental bonus (officially called innovation premium), the Renault Zoe (Germany’s most popular electric car) is now available from approx. 21.000 euros (from approx. 30.000 without an environmental bonus). The mid-range Hyundai Kona is available from approx. 27.650 euros in the cheapest variant (approx. 36.650 without environmental bonus).

Incidentally, the Fraunhofer Institute does not rule out the possibility that the purchase prices of e-cars and fuel cars will be at the same level on average in 2025 – even without government subsidies. One of the main reasons is falling battery prices.

Battery prices are falling.

The battery is the most expensive component of the electric car. According to the Fraunhofer Institute, it makes ca. 30 % to 35 % of the total costs from. However, market researchers from BloombergNEF assume that the average battery costs will be around 100 dollars/kWh in 2023. A clear turning point for the broad competitiveness of electric cars. In addition, completely different alternatives to lithium-ion batteries could come onto the market, such as sodium-ion or zinc-air batteries.

The automotive supplier Mahle is even already developing a magnet-free electric motor that dispenses entirely with rare earths and thus enables significantly more climate-friendly production.

“Dispensing with magnets and thus the use of rare earths offers great potential not only in terms of geopolitical advantages but also with regard to the responsible use of nature and resources.” – Michael Frick, Chairman of Mahle

Maintenance costs are lower with the electric car.

The maintenance of electric cars is different from that of combustion engines. Some jobs simply fall away. And so has the cost. This applies, for example, to the oil change, spark plug or fuel filter replacement. Checking the brakes remains as important as ever, but the recuperation of the e-drive puts less strain on the brakes. Slowing down already reduces speed, and that’s easier on the brakes.

Repair and maintenance change fundamentally with electric mobility. Much can be controlled remotely via over-the-air maintenance (OTA). E-cars automatically receive software updates and new (safety) features. Also, cars should be able to determine via self-diagnosis if they need to go to the workshop. Mechanical repair work can of course still be done only by them.

All this means that you usually have around 20-50% lower maintenance costs than with a combustion engine. By the way, electric cars often perform better when it comes to depreciation. You can see the exact value of your model on the Schwacke list.

Charging is cheaper than filling up.

The electricity costs for 100 kilometers can be roughly calculated for each e-car model by multiplying the price of a kilowatt hour of electricity on site by the energy consumption of the electric car per 100 kilometers.

Example e-Up! Its stated standard consumption is 11.7 kWh per 100 kilometers. At a kilowatt hour price of 30 cents, charging for this distance costs approx. 3,50 Euro (at Polarstern the kilowatt hour of car electricity is even cheaper). The VW up! on the other hand, with the stated standard consumption of 5.1 liters per 100 kilometers and the price of Super E10 of 1.255 euros per liter in January 2021, costs about 6.40 euros. So almost double.

An important point is also the CO2 pricing, which makes fossil fuels more expensive since January 2021. Read more about the impact on prices of different fuels here.

The cheapest way to charge at home – with our car electricity rates.

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