Looking at modern car lots (not to mention, modern gas prices), it’s clear that more and more Canadians are keen to drive an electric vehicle. To help educate the next generation of EV drivers, Chevrolet has teamed with tech expert Marc Saltzman on what a life with an EV can look like. We chatted with Marc, and asked some burning (but not gas-burning) questions of our own. —Noa Nichol
Hi Marc! More and more Canadians are choosing to purchase an electric vehicle; what do you think is “driving” (sorry!) this decision?
I love the pun. We believe the main factors “driving” Canadians to choose electric vehicles are the rising gas prices and the need to be more environmentally conscious. Over the last few months, gas prices have been at an all-time high. A study by KPMG uncovered 61 per cent of Canadians say gas prices and oil supply challenges have convinced them it’s time to buy an EV.
What are some factors to consider in purchasing an EV, particularly around the differences between various models?
With the meteoric rise of interest in electric vehicles, the various manufacturers on the market are constantly diversifying their offer. For example, Chevrolet’s current roster of electric vehicles includes Bolt EV, Bolt EUV and their newest vehicles to support an all-electric future, Silverado EV, with the Equinox EV and Blazer EV. With names consumers already know and love, the fleet of vehicles offers more technology, more connectivity, and more safety, keeping affordability, useful technology and great design at the forefront.
Once they are home, what are some of the most common questions people continue to have around how an EV works?
The two most common questions people continue to have about EVs are the vehicle range and charging. With plenty of misconceptions, these two are the most important factors to consumers when considering the purchase of an EV. Some questions are:
- How long will the vehicle take to charge?
- Will it be as easy as stopping at a gas station?
- How far the vehicle range will take me?
- Is it comparable to a traditional vehicle?
How does home-charging installation usually work, and what does usage and maintenance look like?
For most eligible vehicles, Chevrolet will cover the cost of the standard installation of a level 2 (240 volt) charger for home charging—this is faster than the typical plug in our homes. Eighty to 90 per cent of charging can be done at home as the preferred method. And while you’re away from home, there are over 16,000 chargers at over 6,000 public charging stations to charge from. To make charging even easier, the myChevrolet Mobile App, with Energy Assist, can help you plan the most efficient routes, find available charging stations, check for peak pricing and even pay for charging while you’re on the go.
Top EV myths and misperceptions?
The top EV myth/misconception is range anxiety. Many consumers are concerned that the range of an EV will not get them to and from their destination. The average EV range is about 320 km, which means most day-to-day drives are well within an EV’s range, whether it’s a short commute, trip to the shops or seeing friends and relatives. This is about travelling from Downtown Vancouver to Whistler there and back in one full charge (121 km per way) with more range to spare. For Chevrolet vehicles, the Bolt EV has a range up to 417 km, the newly released Blazer EV has up to 515 km and the Silverado EV has a range up to 640 km.
Your favourite/top reason to invest in an EV?
If I didn’t say gas prices, I would be lying. With the rising prices and the want to be more environmentally conscious, I am all for an EV future. With all the available models, I know I won’t be compromising on technology or capabilities.
What does the future of EVs, and driving, look like?
All in the quest for a zero-emission future, brands are adapting their vehicles to the consumer sentiment. Over the next few years, Canadians will see a rise in EV offerings for every type of driver. As technology becomes more innovative, EVs will become more advanced.