Case Study 1: The Impetus for an EV

Darby previously owned an internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle that was involved in an accident and needed a replacement. She decided that it was a good time to transition to an electric vehicle (EV), having heard about it from her colleagues who own EVs.

Smart Decisions

Darby rented an ICE vehicle while shopping around for used EVs. New EVs are more expensive than their ICE counterparts –  up to 35% of the total cost - because of the price of lithium-ion batteries.

She started with internet searches on sites such as Carvana.com and found that used EVs – fresh off 3-year lease, with about 30,000 mileage – cost under $15,000. Armed with this information, Darby visited a local dealership to inquire about bringing in a used Volkswagen e-Golf. Not having to buy a car immediately gave Darby the advantage of negotiating for the price that she wanted.

Driving Electric Adaptations

Darby’s neighbor, a certified electrician, determined that her house could charge her e-Golf safely provided she used the electrical outlet specifically for that purpose and avoided using her dryer or oven at the same time.

Operating the EV’s heating, ventilation, and air conditioning can significantly reduce the electric range. Darby addresses this by warming up the car when it is still plugged at home. She also wears extra layers of warm clothing and gloves.

Like many Americans, she travels less than 30 miles a day. Therefore, the e-Golf was a good fit for Darby’s driving needs and budget. For the occasional long distance trips, she plans to rent gasoline vehicles.

Contact

Lee Yoke Lee
4-H Urban Outreach Program Manager (West Village) & Environmental Educator
YL2365@cornell.edu
(607) 272-2292, ext. 192 (Voicemail 277)

Last updated April 28, 2020