Electric Vehicles (EVs) are rising in popularity each year and are set to become the future of transportation. As their name suggests, electric vehicles are powered by electricity through one or more electric motors and batteries that can be recharged instead of refueled. These eco-friendly vehicles can reduce costs and make a positive impact on the environment while not sacrificing on performance.
Why drive EVs?
Lower Cost of Ownership
Fueling and maintaining an EV can cost three times less than a gasoline vehicle. According to energy.gov fueling a car with electricity is the equivalent of spending $1 per gallon of gasoline on average. EVs have fewer moving parts and require less maintenance in comparison to gasoline or diesel vehicles. Additionally, you may qualify for several financial incentives when purchasing an EV. Learn more at www.goelectricdrive.org.
Electric Vehicles are cleaner to operate than fossil fuel-powered vehicles. There are zero tailpipe emissions when you operate a fully electric vehicle and grid power from central plants is cleaner than a gas-powered vehicle. El Paso Electric's (EPE) energy is generated from a variety of low-emission sources such as solar, nuclear and natural gas and will continue to become cleaner over time.
Electric Vehicles produce nearly instant torque, feel more responsive while being driven and provide a quieter ride.
Electric Vehicles can be easily charged in your own garage, saving you from constant trips to the gas station.
Buying an EV
There are two types of EVs available for purchase. EVs are classified by the degree that electricity is used as their energy source—either fully electric or hybrid. Each type offers different features to accommodate your travel needs.
Types of EVs
Fully Electric (EVs):
Run exclusively on electricity.
Have a travel range of 75 to over 300 miles depending on model.
Zero tailpipe emissions.
Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEVs):
Run on electricity and switch to a gasoline backup once the battery charge is depleted.
Lower tailpipe emissions than conventional gas-only vehicles.
When purchasing an electric or plug-in hybrid vehicle, you may qualify for several financial incentives, including tax credits, for lowering the up-front costs. Learn more and see how you may qualify.
While there are several ways to charge your EV, charging at home is often the lowest cost and most convenient option. There are two kinds of at home charging: Level 1 and Level 2. Which one is right for you?
Level 1 Charging: Uses the charge cord that came with your EV and plugs in to a 120-volt outlet. To avoid tripping a circuit breaker, the charger should not be plugged in the same outlet as any other major appliances (refrigerator, A/C, washing machine). The Level 1 charge rate is approximately 5 miles of range per hour of charge – or roughly 60 miles of recharge each night. No separate charging station is required, which avoids the expense of a dedicated 240-volt circuit and more expensive equipment.
Level 2 charging: Requires installation of a charging station connected to a 240-volt outlet. Charging at Level 2 can add roughly 10 to 30 miles of range per hour, depending on the vehicle. While the faster recharge time may be more desirable, in some instances, a panel upgrade and service upgrade from EPE may be required. A licensed electrician should be consulted to determine if the home’s existing panel can accommodate Level 2 charging, as well as the related costs to install a 240-volt outlet in the garage.
There are over 100 public charging stations in El Paso Electric’s service territory. Public stations can be Level 1, Level 2 or Level 3. Level 3 or “DC fast charging” can recharge up to 80% of your battery in 20 minutes. You can find public charging stations near you by visiting PlugShare or downloading its mobile app in the iOS App Store or Google Play Store.
El Paso Electric’s EV Initiatives
El Paso Electric is continuously working to make a positive impact in our environment by generating clean, reliable and renewable energy. We’ve already taken the next step by integrating EVs into our service fleet. At the moment, there are 16 electric, plug-in hybrid and hybrid vehicles in our fleet.
El Paso Electric showcases its electric fleet vehicles in public outreach events throughout the year. If you would like to get more information on one of our upcoming events, you can visit us on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter.
Any entry that is yellow might change depending on your car and miles driven.
EV efficiency varies by model; you can find ratings for different models at www.fueleconomy.gov.
*Avg Rate from Sept '17 through Aug '18
Frequently Asked Questions
Will I be able to charge my EV when I am away from home?
Yes and you can find public charging stations near you by visiting Plugshare.
What EV is best for me?
All major automakers are now offering more efficient plug-in vehicles and electric models every year. Visit the websites of your favorite brands to learn about their plug-in offerings or visit the Alternative Fuels Data Center for a summary of currently available EVs.
How far can I get on a single charge?
EV range is improving every year. Several models can go more than 200 miles on a single charge and some even have over 300 miles of range.
How will charging an EV affect my electric bill?
An average electric vehicle can travel about three miles per kilowatt-hour used. Driving 1,000 miles per month while charging with El Paso Electrics’s EV rate during off-peak hours would cost about $12 per month. Driving 1,000 miles while charging with El Paso Electric’s Texas residential rate would cost approximately $35 per month. By comparison, a conventional vehicle that averages 30 miles per gallon with gasoline prices at $2.80 per gallon would spend $93 per month.
Does El Paso Electric offer a special EV rate?
Yes. El Paso Electric offers a special Electric Vehicle (EV) rate that saves customers money when charging their vehicle during the utility's off-peak hours between 6:00 p.m. and 12:00 p.m. Customers will need to request an additional meter from EPE in order to be qualified for this rate. You should consult a qualified electrician about the costs to upgrade your home or business to accommodate an additional meter for the EV charging circuit. Read about EPE’s EV Rate here.
What initial start-up costs can I expect for installing charging equipment?
Depending on your current wiring and charging needs, prices will vary for installation. Any licensed electrician will be able to provide further details for these services. In some cases, you may be able to use an existing outlet in your garage and charge at Level 1 with no additional equipment or installation costs.