Friday, November 26, 2010

A LEAF Is Cheaper Than A Corvette

It also carries more people and cargo.  So why do EV critics always talk about the higher costs of EV's?  Higher costs than what?  When someone buys a car they have a certain amount they can spend and make their decision within that price range.  Each vehicle is a compromise and does some things better than others.  If cost were the deciding factor everyone would be driving the cheapest vehicle available, yet very few do so.  If you have $33K to spend on a car, the unsubsidized price of a LEAF for those who want the true cost, you look at vehicles in that price range.  In that range you can get an Audi, BMW, Buick, Ford, Hyundai, Infiniti, etc., all with varying degrees of reliability, efficiency, comfort, and perceived value.  There are many reasons buyers will choose one over the other yet they all sell fairly well.  Though I have not driven one reviewers have said the LEAF is a very nicely built, comfortable, quiet vehicle.  It may not possess the luxury cache of some of the others but from an economic standpoint that doesn't put money in your pocket.  What does is driving home in a vehicle that costs substantially less to operate than all other available vehicles.
But what am I leaving out?  Ah yes, the battery!  You have to replace it, right?  Well, it is warrantied for 8 years and 100,000 miles, most people don't keep a car that long.
So it hurts resale value!  Maybe not, we just don't know yet.  We do know that the RAV4EV's which have been on the road for 10 years or so are still running on the original packs with over 100K miles on them.  They rarely come up for sale but when they do they have brought a premium, some selling for around $40K and higher.  Original MSRP was $42K.  How's that for resale value?
So with potentially high resale value and reduced operating costs, EV's are not more expensive than conventional cars, and certainly cheaper, more useful, and a better value, than a Corvette.

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