Have you stopped at a red light recently here in the Mohawk Valley and had a car next to you conk out completely with its engine turned off? You’re in the right lane on Genesee Street in Utica and a car stops next to you in the left lane, waiting for the light. Then that car’s engine quits.
You wonder, should you stop to help her out? Then you realize, it’s an electric car! And when the light turns green, it starts right up again. It’s a little spooky when you first experience it.
We assume people buy electric cars such as the Chevy Volt, Nissan Leaf, Kia Soul EV, or Ford Focus Electric because they’re better for the environment. But we got to thinking, doesn’t the electricity used to power these cars cause pollution, too?
What about refueling, are their stations here in the Mohawk Valley that cater to electric cars?
And how about price, are they affordable? Also, what about Tesla, the premier experimental electric car manufacturer.
So we looked into it a bit and have this to report.
Are Electric Cars Clean and Green?
Electric cars use less gas if they’re a hybrid and no gas if they’re 100% electric. So there’s no question they use less petroleum. That means that when the car is powered by the battery, there are no emissions from gasoline combustion.
But what about the electricity, doesn’t that pump carbon into the air? Here you must consider the source of the electricity. If it’s from parts of the country where electricity is generated from low-carbon sources such as sun, wind, or nuclear, then the cars’ emissions are low.
But if the electricity is generated from coal, then the car really doesn’t contribute to the elimination of carbon emissions. It gets a bit complicated, with different kinds of hybrid cars, fully electric performing better and worse depending on where it is in the country.
There’s no question that driving an electric car helps the country by decreasing our dependence on foreign oil. But it isn’t carbon free until our sources of electricity are carbon free.
Electric Car Fueling Stations in the Utica Area
The only fueling stations we could find in Utica are:
Clean Energy-OGS Utica
10 Harbor Lock Rd.
Utica, NY 13502.
North Utica Shopping Center
50 Auert Ave.
Utica, NY 13501
Do you know of others in the Greater Utica area?
Are Electric Cars More Affordable?
Just Google “electric cars” and you’ll see a variety from Chevrolet to Ford to Tesla. And the pricing looks very affordable. The price ranges looked to us from around $29,000 to a Tesla Model X for $82,500. There’s also a small Mitsubishi i-MiEV starting at just $22,995.
And Tesla is introducing a new Model 3 that sells for $35,000. However, our research confirms that Tesla’s are hard to get right now. It looks like interested buyers will have to wait until 2018 to get on the list.
We predict that you’ll be experiencing more cars “conking out” at the light, as electric cars become more convenient and affordable. If you want car insurance on your electric car, give us a call today. We’ll offer you good protection and probably save you some money.
Until next time,
Your SZW Team
SZW Insurance is your New Hartford area independent insurance agent. Call us for a quote on insurance for your home, car, business, or life at 315.792.0000. Or request a quote here.