Yes - they are more expensive to purchase. Electric cars cost more than conventional, combustion engine vehicles (not for long though), yet the costs of charging are much lower than of fueling with gasoline. Here's a short introduction for estimating how much electricity does your EV need, and how will it affect your wallet.
The energy consumption of an EV depends on the vehicle, driving habits and the weather (just like with any other vehicle). A large family station wagon consumes much more electricity than a tiny EV, and commuting at the city center is much more efficient compared to driving at the highway with full speed. Changing seasons also have a high impact on the consumption, as the electricity consumption rises a lot on cold climate. Heating and cooling decrease the charge of a battery.
An average electric car consumes approximately 0,20 kWh/km.
On favourable weather conditions the consumption can be even 0,15 kWh or less, but year-around average in most countries is closer to 0,2 kilowatthours.
As we are a born-and-bred Finnish company, let's use the yearly driving kilometers of a typical Finnish driver to demonstrate the consumption. On average, people in Finland drive a bit over 16 800 kilometers during one year. On a daily basis, this makes approximately 47 kilometers of driving.
In consumption this means 282 kWh of electricity in one month.
When estimating your electricity consumption, you should also take into account the yearly holiday seasons, monthly differences and your driving habits: some of us drive around more during summer months, others make longer trips during winter when using public transportation doesn't seem as comfortable as travelling from door to door in your own comfy vehicle.
Based on your driving habits, you can calculate the electricity consumption and costs just like we did here. The person in the example spends approximately 42 euros per month on EV charging, assuming that the electricity costs an average of a 0,15 €/kWh. Thus, the annual costs are approximately 500 euros. Compared to annual combustion engine fuel costs with the same mileage, driving an EV is thousands of euros cheaper.
Read more about charging power, range anxiety and other charging necessities: check out other EV Charging 101 posts from our blog.