Chevy Volt rolls into show rooms

Electric Vehicles are Coming! Prepare with a Few Handy Resources

As electric cars start to hit showrooms in Minnesota in the coming weeks, we wanted to help folks understand more about this exciting technology.

People have a lot of questions: What’s the difference between a Chevy Volt and a Nissan Leaf? How far can you drive them, where can you plug them in and how do they compare to their conventional combustion engine cousins? In an attempt to cut through some of the questions, CERTs has compiled several sources for you to check out.

While it’s true that you don’t have quite the range you’d get with a combustion engine, electric vehicles are becoming a viable option for drivers in both urban and rural areas, since the cars can be charged overnight in a home garage. Thanks to aggressive infrastructure deployment projects and new tools to accelerate adoption of electric vehicles in the US, many private and government organizations in cities are installing electric charging stations. The US Department of Energy’s Alternative Fueling Station Locator is a nifty tool that allows you to locate electric charging stations in your area, along with a wide selection other fueling sources such as biodiesel and hydrogen.

If you are considering buying an electric vehicle, this handy Guide to Buying Hybrids and Electrics in the Star Tribune outlines the different types of vehicles available, as well as price considerations and driving range for various types of electric cars. Of course, the most important component of any electric vehicle is the battery, so a primer on electric car battery basics is a must whether you’re a prospective owner or a car enthusiast.

Nissan Leaf getting plugged in For people who are mostly concerned about the money—the sticker price of electric vehicles may give people pause—the article Green Cars Make Cents gives a breakdown of overall ownership costs. Included in this article is also a handy link that takes you to a green car calculator where you can compare the 5-year ownership costs of an electric, hybrid or diesel-powered car to a conventional gasoline-powered vehicle.

We hope that we’ve been able to help shed a little light on the subject of electric cars. Whether you’re a cautious new buyer or a longtime supporter, electric vehicles will be a part of your future. How much a part depends upon the choices made by consumers, car manufactures and charging infrastructure in the coming years. Happy Driving!

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