5 Things to consider when buying an electric carBy Kijiji Autos
Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change, believes that electric cars are part of the solution to this problem. There are plenty of stories about the positive impact electric cars have on the environment. As a consumer, though, you should also consider how it’ll impact your life.
Here are five things to think about before jumping onto the electric vehicle (EV) or plug-in hybrid bandwagon.
1. Cost of Power
Even though you can charge up at public stations, potentially at no cost, electricity isn’t free. Similar to pulling up to the pump, there’s a cost every time you plug in. Whether you’re topping off or filling up, you should still be concerned about emissions – more specifically, the amount of greenhouse gas (GHG) generated to produce the electricity your vehicle needs. The Canadian Automobile Association provides a to help you figure out what your energy costs would be based on how much you drive and where you live.
2. Selection of Cars
While almost every car company now offers an eco-friendlier model, there are fewer of these cars available compared to those with an internal combustion engine than both the EV and plug-in hybrids. Battery vehicles include the following makes and models: i3, Chevrolet Spark EV, Focus Electric, Kia Soul, Mitsubishi i-MiEV, LEAF, Tesla Model S, and Tesla Model X. There are even more options available if you’re willing to consider plug-in hybrids, such as the prolific Toyota Prius and the McLaren P1, the world’s first hybrid supercar.
3. Government Incentives
Car manufacturers may advertise their electric vehicles by highlighting incentives available from the government. Currently, only three of the country’s provinces and territories offer any type of incentive: British Columbia, Ontario, and Quebec. Running on Green Power – Quebec’s program – offers rebates of up to $8,000 on the purchase or lease of an EV or plug-in hybrid. They also offer a rebate of up to $600 for purchasing and installing a charging station at your home. These programs have a lot of requirements so make sure to read the fine print!
4. Access to Charging Stations
While plug-in hybrids have a failsafe in place – a traditional gas-powered tank – EV cars don’t offer a backup plan. When your car needs juice, you need to find a charge. Canada currently has over 3,700 EV chargers. Charging levels make a huge difference, with empty battery charges ranging from 8 to 15 hours on Level 1, and 20 to 60 minutes on Level 3. Given how much you’ll be driving, having access to these stations and the time available to recharge along your route needs to be an important consideration.
5. Maintenance Costs
Forget most of what you know when it comes to car maintenance for electric vehicles. Oil changes? Gone. Spark plugs? No more. Exhaust issues? Uh … there is no exhaust system to experience issues. Brakes last longer thanks to regenerative braking, where energy gets harnessed back into the battery. This sounds great, right? You’ll still have to keep an eye on your tires, and there are fluids that need to be changed. The biggest expense from a repair standpoint would be replacing the battery. This can cost several thousand dollars and is important to keep in mind.
With an ever-growing array of model choices, more and more charging stations being built to accommodate a larger fleet of EV drivers, and the desire to support the fight against global warming and climate change, electric cars represent a way to make a conscious – albeit expensive – decision to make the world a better place, one kilometer at a time.
Easily find your next ride on Kijiji AutosSearch now
First time car buyer? Check out our guide to help you find the best dealers
First-time car buyers have a lot to think about. A car is an investment and you want to get a good return on what you are paying for. Being a first-time car buyer can be a daunting experience, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are some ways to find the best dealers for new car buyers: 1. Look for...
How to buy or sell a used car in Ontario with the UVIP?
Did you know that if you decide to buy a used car in Ontario, your seller must provide you with a Used Vehicle Information Package or UVIP? If you're thinking of buying or selling a used car online in this province, here's what you need to know about the UVIP, courtesy of Kijiji Autos: Do I...
The difference between AWD and 4WD and other drivetrain questions explained
If you have been shopping for a vehicle, you may have seen words like all-wheel drive (AWD), front-wheel drive (FWD). You may have asked yourself about the meaning of all-wheel drive. These terms all refer to the drivetrain. Here is a breakdown on some of the drivetrain terms: Front-wheel drive...
Should you keep, trade or sell your car?
Browsing for a new car? With online resources that give you the confidence you need to make the best choice for your budget and lifestyle, shopping for a car online has never been easier. If you're looking for a new ride but don't know what to do with your current one, you typically have three...
How to get a fair price on your next car
Are you hunting for the best deal on a new car online? Take advantage of Kijiji Autos' online tools, resources and information to help you find the car of your dreams and pay the best price. Here are some tips for getting an awesome car price estimate online: Compare car prices It's much...
How to buy your next car online in Canada
As manufacturers and dealers recognize that the global pandemic is a long-term reality, the auto industry is rolling out more services to buy a car online in Canada. From the comfort of your own home, you can easily browse the latest models, apply for financing, make a purchase and get your brand...
10 popular SUVs and crossovers in Canada
There's no doubt that Canadians navigate a wide variety of weather and lifestyle conditions every day. This makes a fun, practical and comfortable SUV or crossover a solid vehicle choice, from coast to coast. Listed in no particular order, check out these 10 popular SUV and crossover models to...
The best features of 10 popular hatchbacks
If you are in the market for a hatchback, you'll want to check out this overview of these 10 models and the features that make them so popular. Kijiji Autos will help you confidently choose between the best hatchbacks, including used, sporty and hybrid models – whatever is a priority for you.
10 popular vans in Canada
Cargo vans and minivans can meet the needs of many drivers. There are plenty of models to choose from at various price points, which can make it difficult to pick the van that's right for you. Whether it's passenger capacity or cargo space you're after, Kijiji Autos is here to help with your search.
Top 10 popular pickup trucks in Canada
The pickup truck has always been a symbol of utility and strength, and lately, many models have become luxury family vehicles that leave nothing to be desired. In no particular order, these popular brands represent a range of available features, engine types and towing capacities. Check out the...