Automobiles are some of the most important means of transportation worldwide and play an essential role in all sorts of human activities. Internal combustion engines were the primary way of making cars move since their invention. However, recent technological developments have introduced electric cars as an alternative to gasoline-powered ones. As a result, comparing electric and gasoline-powered vehicles becomes crucial for everyone who wants to make responsible decisions in this respect. Both types of cars are similar in everything except for the engines, and while gasoline-powered vehicles are cheaper to buy and have a better range, electric cars are cheaper to maintain and environment-friendly.
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As mentioned above, gasoline-powered and electric cars are similar in many respects. Since they serve essentially the same purpose in transportation, they have similar chassis and bodies. The cheapest models of electric vehicles may be roughly within the same price range as their gasoline-powered counterparts (1). The main difference between the two is obviously the type of engine used. Gasoline-powered cars rely on internal combustion engines, while electric cars, as suggested by the name, are powered by electric motors. Thus, both electric and gasoline-powered vehicles fill the same niche and have comparable design and characteristics, but differ in the type of engine they use.
Gasoline vehicles have been in use for a long time, which means that they have advantages over other types of land transport. One of their main advantages is price: overall, gasoline-powered cars tend to be cheaper than electric ones. Apart from that, most electric cars can only travel 200 to 300 miles per single charge (2). A single refill of a gasoline-powered car allows covering a much greater distance. However, gasoline vehicles leave a negative environmental impact, which is a con (1). Additionally, their maintenance proves to be costlier than for electric vehicles (1). To summarize, gasoline vehicles combine better range with high greenhouse gas emissions and are cheaper to buy but more expensive to maintain.
The pros and cons of electric automobiles reflect the cons and pros of gasoline-powered ones. Electric cars require no oil changes or automatic transmission fluid, and electricity is also cheaper than gasoline (1). It makes electric cars less expensive to use and maintain. Additionally, they do not burn any fossil fuels and, as a result, do not contribute to global warming. However, electric cars are generally more expensive to buy, although the new development in battery technology may eventually make them cheaper (2). They have a limited range per charge and depend on the charging infrastructure more (2). This limitation is especially significant in rural areas that have fewer charging stations than cities. Thus, electric cars are more expensive to buy and dependant on infrastructure but compensate for it by lower maintenance costs and environmental impact.
As one can see, electric and gasoline vehicles have both similarities and differences, especially when it comes to pros and cons. Both types of cars have similar functions and designs but run on different engines. Gasoline-powered cars are usually cheaper to buy but costlier to maintain. They have a better range than the electric ones but also leave a negative impact on the environment. Electric vehicles have a limited range and are more expensive to buy than gasoline ones. However, they have lower maintenance costs and are environment-friendly as compared to gasoline cars.
- Malmgren I. Quantifying the societal benefits of electric vehicles. World Electric Vehicle Journal. 2016;8(4): 996-1007.
- Gunn T. EVs and EDs: Rural electric coops to benefit from late adoption of electric vehicles. Web.