Another Great Con Job (Part 2)

In this segment, we look at what it cost to operate an EV vs a comparable gas vehicle.  There really are several factors beyond just the cost per mile.  There is also the upfront cost and the time issue.


The upfront costs can vary a lot depending on what you need.  Being able to charge your car at home is a major time saver and convenience factor, but it isn’t all that simple.  Most cars come equipped with the ability to plug into a wall socket in the garage.  Fine, except that assumes your home electrical wiring will handle the demand.  It may take up to 20 hours to charge the EV with this level 1 charging.  Installing a level 2 home charger will probably cost $1,500 +/- but will cut the charge time in half.  That cost assumes that your home wiring can handle the 240 line and heavy draw for the EV.

Unless all your usage will be local it will be necessary to charge at public charge stations.  That presents a number of issues regarding the locations of stations, the cost of electricity, and the availability of a charge line at those stations.  Not all cars can charge at all stations either.

Charging at public stations take less time, however, but the downside is a rapid charge will only fill the battery to 80% and then a safety governor stops the charge.  If that safety should fail the battery can explode.

Charging your EV at a public station can cost anywhere from 13-26 cents per minute, or 39-79 cents per KWH.  That will likely be 2 to 3 times more than charging at home.  The availability of stations is still limited, especially in more rural areas and that should be noted when planning trips.

Another consideration is batteries are temperature sensitive.  Cold has an adverse effect on both their life and their ability to perform.

Cold weather can reduce your EV’s range by up to 50%, so a warm weather range of 300 miles becomes a cold weather range of 150 miles.  More frequent charges, more time, and more stress result.  Charging takes twice as long when temperatures are 32 or lower.

So, if you used rapid charge the 300-mile rated range is reduced to 240 miles (80%) and if it is below freezing the range is reduced to 120 miles.  Extended exposure to cold also reduces the life of the battery.  Ideally, you keep the car in a heated and cooled garage all the time.  Of course that never happens and in many cases, the car is never in a climate-controlled space.

A worst case could be spending 45-60 minutes at a charge station (after you find one) for every 2-21/2 hours of driving.

A final note on operating costs is regarding tires.  Many EVs have low-profile, expensive tires.  Due to the increased weight, the life of the tires is also diminished from some 40,000 miles to about 25,000 miles.

So, does an EV make sense for you?  If we all buy an EV will we help save the planet?  Are there plans to upgrade the country’s electrical grid to handle several million EVs?  Or, are we just being conned again?


Ken Vincent
Ken Vincent
KEN is a 46 year veteran hotelier and entrepreneur. Formerly owned two hotels, an advertising agency, a wholesale tour company, a POS company, a leasing company, and a hotel management company. The hotels included chain owned, franchises, and independents. They ranged in type from small luxury inns, to limited service properties, to large convention hotels and resorts. After retiring he authored a book, “So Many Hotels, So Little Time” in which he relates what life is like behind the scenes for a hotel manager. Ken operated more that 100 hotels and resorts in the US and Caribbean and formed eight companies. He is a firm believer that senior management should share their knowledge and experience with the next generation of management.

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  1. Great article. How would you like to live in Florida the hurricane center of the good old USA. How can you try to charge your car at home if the electricity is disrupted ? What happens when there is a call for evacuation? Every charging station would almost be impossible to get to depending how many charging stations you had in your location. When word goes out here that a Hurricane is imminent you can’t even find a loaf of bread in the grocery stores, ice becomes an elusive item and the gas lines sometimes stretch around the block.. Can you imagine the chaos at the charging stations? I will never own a EV. Our so called government has not thought this through as usual. I am all for saving the planet but common sense needs to take place. Facts don’t matter with this administration. I would only hope that John Kerry is flying in a EV Airplane and it runs out of electricity half away across the Pacific Ocean on his way to one of his Climate Change conferences. Just a thought not wishing him any bad karma.
    Thanks again Ken for a thought provoking article.
    Semper Fi

    • Excellent observation, Tom. We do live in Fl. and were without power for 6 weeks after hurricane Michael in 2018. No way that we could have evacuated with an EV.

    • The closest I’m going to get to an EV is a golf cart. The rest of the theory they can keep, along with the idea of banning gas ranges. Who thinks up these idiotic things?

  2. I firmly believe Ken that rather than promoting the EV, these Nincompoops would be more successful promoting the horse and buggy technology. The by-product would definitely feed their Green New Deal planter boxes!

    Your two-part article is well researched and based on indisputable facts. Thanks for presenting this info in a practical manner in which the uninformed can intelligently address this current issue. Fossil fuels run our economy, period!