Top 5 Disadvantages of Owning an Electric Car

Thanks to a transport survey conducted by Dalia Research, we’ve been given an insight into some global transportation habits. One question of particular interest was, ‘what do you see as the top disadvantages of owning an electric car?’. Below are what the public perceive to be the top five disadvantages of electric car ownership.

Keep in mind that the majority of respondents don’t own an EV, so their answers are what they perceive as the problems.

1. Not Enough Charging Stations

Of those surveyed, 50% felt that there aren’t enough charging stations for electric cars. At the moment, there are 15,822 charging stations and 42,148 charging outlets in the U.S.

The number of charging stations isn’t too bad, and there is more infrastructure being built constantly. But when compared to the 150,000 plus gas stations in the U.S., the situation doesn’t seem great. And ultimately, in the eyes of the driver, gas sets the benchmark for electric standards.

2. They Are Too Expensive

Coming in as the second ‘top disadvantage’ was the price of an EV, with 44% of people thinking they’re too expensive.

It’s true that EVs are noticeably more expensive than their gas counterparts:

A difference of $9,100 is pretty sizable. There are, however, up to $7,500 in tax incentives available for those buying a new EV in the U.S. Meaning the difference could be as low as $1,600, in this instance.

3. I Can’t Use Them For Long Journeys

With 42% of respondents seeing a problem with using an EV for long journeys, this disadvantage comes in third. This, of course, is a subjective problem. For some, a long journey could be 150 miles, while for others it could be 700 miles.

High-end EVs, like the Tesla Model S 100d, have a range of up to 335 miles. Mid-range EVs, like the Chevrolet Bolt, are improving drastically and can go over 230 miles on a single charge. For some people these ranges genuinely won’t be enough for their ‘long journeys’, but for others, they will.

4. They Take Too Long To Charge

Unsurprisingly, the charge time of electric vehicles is still a major gripe for consumers, and 36% thought this was a disadvantage. But electric vehicles have certainly come a long way in this regard over the last few years. Below are the charge times, depending on charge point output, of the best-selling EV to date, the Nissan Leaf:

5. I Can’t Charge At Home

Being unable to charge an electric car at home was the fifth biggest disadvantage for 26% of respondents. This can be a real problem if you don’t have a driveway or garage. It’s estimated 99% of EV charging is done at home.

Think there are any other major disadvantages to EV ownership that aren’t on the list? Let us know in the comments section below.

By Robert Bacon
Updated: April 30, 2017
  • Jim

    Not enough vehicles… let’s face it, there’s just a handful of decent EVs on the market…

    • Robert

      Especially considering the choices out there for people who want an electric SUV or crossover.