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Which Electric Vehicle should you buy?

Buying an electric vehicles (EV) is the way of the future. If you are looking for a new slick ride that is environmentally-friendly, there are a variety of well-built cars showing up on the market.

Picking through the plethora of EVs can be time-consuming and confusing, but considering a few main factors will help to narrow your search and find the perfect vehicle for you. The first thing you have to do is narrow down what type of EV you are looking for. There are several types of EVs, including Battery EVs Plug-in Hybrid Vehicles, Hybrids, and Fuel-cell EVs.

Battery EVs drive entirely on a battery and electric drive without a conventional internal combustion engine. They need a charging station and can also recharge their batteries through regenerative braking. Plug-in Hybrids run mostly on battery units, but are also equipped with an internal combustion engine that can recharge the battery or replace the electric drive if needed. Hybrid vehicles do not have a plug-in system and instead batteries are recharged from an electric motor driven by the engine in the vehicle. Fuel-cell EVs are the newest technology on the market and instead have a battery cell that creates energy from hydrogen and oxygen instead of a traditional battery charging pack.

Does that make sense? Next you have to consider how often you will be using the vehicle. If you drive a far distance, a Battery EV might not be the best option because it cannot drive more than 180 km without a recharge. A plug-in hybrid is a better alternative in this case because it has a back-up engine.

Your choice will also depend on the availability of charging stations in your region. If public charging stations are available, it is possible to charge a Battery EV during the day, but if not it may be better to have an internal combustion engine in the car for emergencies. Fuel-cell EVs were just released in February 2015 and there are currently only two hydrogen refuel stations in Canada. If you have money to invest though, this technology is due to become the future of EVs.

Currently, Plug-in Hybrids and Hybrids lead the EV market. As the popularity in EVs rise in the next 10 years, Battery and Fuel-cell EVs will take over because these two types of EVs are fuel-saving and have low environmental impact. However, they are more expensive than the other options. At the Green Living Show this year, the Chevrolet Volt, which is a plug-in hybrid, won the 2016 Green Car Award.

The Chevrolet Volt is $25,720 and is available for up to a $7,500 rebate from the government upon purchase. The Volt allows you to drive 85 km on the battery and up to 675 km with a full charge and a full tank of gas. The vehicle is also very sleek and looks like a regular vehicle, which is appealing to a buyer who is new to the world of EVs. The Ford Fusion Energi is another Plug-in Hybrid that can drive 60 km and ranges from $23,673 to $39,280. The electric battery also has a plug-in capability to charge the battery using a 120-volt outlet, which gives it more accessibility.

The Tesla Model X is the most well-known battery powered vehicle and sets the bar for Battery EVs. The Model X is $100,300 and is the arguably the best EV on the market. It can drive 412 km because of a supercharger network that can charge in a matter of minutes as opposed to hours. This helps extend the reach of the battery powered EV substantially. The Nissan Leaf is another contender as a battery-powered EV and is $32,698. It can drive up to 172km with a fully powered battery. You can also start charging the EV remotely through an app on your phone when it is plugged in.

EVs are the way of the future and are the most worthy investment if you are interested in buying a car. These vehicles are environmentally friendly, cost-saving, and have a variety of features that leave their fuelled competitors in the dust. Looking through the different options has me excited for the future of cars. EVs only seem to get better and better as larger companies such as Tesla and Chevrolet invest in a greener future for Canada.

What is your favourite EV? Post in the comments below.