What's an Electric Car?

Sun Auto Service Expert, published on 02/26/2016

Ever since they’ve made their debut into the auto market, electric cars have been met with praise and skepticism alike. But honestly, how many of us understand the real difference between an electric and traditional vehicle? From the outside, these cars can look exactly the same. However, electric cars are supposed to be a major step towards greener transportation and to reduce the usage of fossil fuel consumption. With all of that said, what’s special about electric cars?

The Engine and Basic Operation

In a traditional car, you’ll find hundreds of moving components, but in an electric model, only the motor moves. In fact, up to 70 percent of an electric car’s components will differ from its traditional counterparts despite the similarity in external appearance between the two models. These six major components of a traditional engine are replaced in the electric vehicle:

  • Gas tank: Batteries serve as the model’s energy storage.
  • Fuel Injection System: The controller replaces the fuel injection as the speed and acceleration control.
  • Engine: The electric motor gives these cars the necessary force to operate effectively.
  • Fuel Pump: The charger will replace energy as needed for vehicle operation.
  • Alternator: An AC/DC converter provides the accessories with power.
  • Smog control: Electric vehicles do not need this part because without emissions, there is no need to control exhaust toxicity. Instead, you’ll find a DC/AC converter to convert DC energy for the AC motor.

Maintenance Needs and Ease

Because of its moving parts, traditional vehicles require more periodic maintenance for services like oil and filter changes. Electric cars require the occasional battery replacement, but engineers are working towards solutions that will significantly extend battery life and eliminate the need for replacements. However, traditional vehicles have been on the market much longer, so finding knowledgeable service centers like Sun Auto Service to perform maintenance is fairly simple. On the other hand, mechanic training and instruction for electric cars is starting to take off, but it can still be difficult to find a capable technician.

Fuel Efficiency

Electric cars stand out on their fuel efficiency. Accounting for the average cost of electric power, an electric vehicle can travel about 43 miles for every $1.00 of fuel. For a traditional vehicle, a single dollar of fuel is equivalent to 18 miles. The challenge with electric vehicles is the limited availability of charging stations coupled with the battery’s relatively fast depletion.

Electric cars may look like your traditional vehicle, but on the inside, you’ll find an extremely different operating system. As this technology takes off, there are still some challenges to be overcome, but the promise for a greener future remains. If you have additional questions about electric cars, or if you have one of your own that needs service, feel free to visit us here at Sun Auto Service.