Last time we talked about the importance of batteries to our transformation of the energy grid to a progressively more renewable one. I think it makes sense to for us to talk about another green topic that is not necessarily renewable energy generating, but especially important in reducing our carbon footprint and heavily reliant on innovations in batteries. I am referring to the electric vehicle (EV) market, and more broadly, the entire infrastructure surrounding the industry. I have heard the argument countless times: that EV are not cleaner than traditional combustion engines because the energy they require still needs to be produced somewhere, and more often than not this will be at a fossil fuel burning plant, (remember, only 11% of the US energy grid is powered by renewables). Let’s nip this argument right in the bud. A consumer report study looked into this and found out that across the US, EV are at a minimum 20% cleaner than their combustion engine counter parts and on average 60% cleaner across the entire country. The best part is that as we move to a heavier reliance on renewable energy sources to power our grid, EV will only get cleaner.
Back to batteries for a moment. Batteries are essential to the EV market as vehicles become more appealing with longer range possibilities on a single charge. Let’s take a look at the Model S by Tesla. This model was announced back in 2012 and debuted with a range of 136 to 265 miles on a single charge, depending on driving conditions. For comparison, the 2021 Model S boasts a range of 387 to 520 miles on a fully charged battery, and all this on an 85-kwh battery. I’m not going to do the math on how many smoothies a battery like that is worth. The progress of this extremely exciting and I am willing to bet will only increase in rate of progress moving forward.
Tesla has been the leader in the EV marketplace for some time. A position it has earned by more or less creating the marketplace in the first place. However, there is blood in the water now and the industry giants are ready to frenzy. Tesla has proved that there is a demand for EVs, and one that they often cannot meet. This surge in demand has led to an influx of both established auto makers jumping into the fold as well as new start ups trying find their market share. Take Ford for example. They have reinvented arguably the most iconic symbol of the American open road into an EV with the Mustang Mach-E which is equipped with a 68 kwh battery and range of 305 miles. Though this isn’t quite beating the Model S yet, it is competing with the Model 3 who’s range is reported between 263 and 353 miles at a comparable price point. There also exciting new EVs that have been rumored to push the range thresholds; the Nikola Badger claimed it would have a range of 600 miles.
If you’re excited about any of the rumored EVs coming out soon, leave a comment down below.