Owning a Hybrid or Electric Vehicle in Canada Has Its Perks
Electric and hybrid vehicles continue to become more popular among Canadians. If you are considering making the change to an electric vehicle (EV), it is important to understand your options, what would compliment your needs best, environmental impact, and the potential impact on your wallet.
Understanding the Different Types of EVs
- Battery Electric Vehicles (BEVs)
BEVs are fully electric cars, never using gasoline, and are powered exclusively by an electric motor and battery pack. These are considered the most cost-effective and eco-friendly EV option.
- Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEVs)
PHEVs have large battery packs and can be recharged by plugging them in. Once the battery is used up, a gasoline engine or generator takes over, and the car functions like a hybrid. PHEVs are more affordable to drive than traditional hybrids because they provide all-electric driving for most day-to-day needs while offering equal or better fuel economy when operating in gasoline mode.
- Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEVs)
HEVs contain a gasoline engine, an electric motor, and a small battery pack. The battery is recharged through ‘regenerative braking’. The electric motor switches on after the vehicle stops and when it first accelerates; then the gasoline engine takes over to cruising speed. Regenerative braking lets the electric motor and the gasoline engine do what they’re best at, which improves overall efficiency and reduces fuel costs.
Save More Long-Term with EVs and Life Cycle Cost
To be objective with the overall cost of EVs, it’s best to consider both the purchase price and the operating cost.
- EVs use electricity instead of fuel. Averaging 20,000 km/year can save as much as $2,000 per year on fuel alone (plugndrive.ca/electric-vehicle-benefits).
- EVs require less frequent and less complicated maintenance than gas vehicles. If maintained according to the manufacturer’s recommendations, EV drivers pay half as much to repair and maintain their vehicles (greencars.com/expert-insights/cost-to-maintain-an-electric-car).
- Some insurance carriers, like Aviva and CAA, offer purchase subsidy incentives and auto policy discounts to insure hybrid or electric vehicles.
- The battery is the most expensive component. This cost can vary greatly by vehicle.
- EV ownership can help reduce personal vehicle greenhouse gas emissions by as much as 90% (plugndrive.ca/electric-vehicle-benefits).
Even More Savings
Canada’s Zero-Emission Vehicles (iZEV) Program offers up to $5,000 off the purchase or lease of an eligible EV. Refer to the Government of Canada list of eligible vehicles often for updates.
Have questions about your car insurance policy? Call 1-888-338-2685 to discuss hybrid or EV rates with a Orbit Insurance Services broker. If you’re in the market for car insurance, call 1-888-338-2685 for a quote.