How electric vehicles work infographic
The inner workings of an EV
[IMAGE: an electric car with the locations of key parts identified]
EVs have 90% less moving parts that an ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) car.
Here's a breakdown of the parts that keep an EV moving:
Provides power to rotate the wheels. It can be DC/AC type however AC motors are more common.
Converts the electric current in the form of Direct Current (DC) into Alternating Current (AC)
EVs have a single-speed transmission which sends power from the motor to the wheels.
Stores the electricity required to run an EV. The higher the kW of the battery, the higher the range.
Plug into an outlet or EV charging point to charge your battery
Capacity and kWh explained
[IMAGE: example of an EV battery]
Kilowatts (kW) is a unit of power (how much energy a device needs to work). A kilowatt-hour(kWh) is a unit of energy (it shows how much energy has been used)
For example: A 100 watt lightbulb uses 0.1 kilowatts each hour
What's the annual energy consumption of an average household vs. the annual energy consumption to charge an EV at home?
- Home: 3,100 kWh a year
- Electric car: 2,000 kWh a year
[IMAGE: diagram showing range vs kWh/capacity of a battery, with car examples plotted. We show high kWh = high range]
Start. Stop. Start. Stop.
The kinetic energy caused by braking usually goes to waste. However, regenerative braking converts and stores thermal energy from brake pads and tyre's heat friction and reuses it to power the car.
[IMAGE: diagram showing this visually]
You can charge an electric vehicle either by plugging it into a socket to take electricity from the grid or by plugging into a charging unit. There's plenty of charging stations around the UK to stay fully charged while you're out and about.
[IMAGE: an example of a type 2 charger connector]
Three pin plug
A standard three-pin plug that you can connect to any 13 amp socket
A charge point where you can connect either a Type 1 or Type 2 cable
A charge point with a cable attached with either a Type 1 or Type 2 connector
- Typically rated up to 3kW. Often used to charge overnight or at the workplace.
- Charging time: 8-10 hours
- Typically rated at either 7Kw or 22kW. Tend to be installed in car parks, supermarkets, leisure centres and houses with off-street parking.
- Charging time: 3-4 hours
- Typically rated from 43 kW. Only compatible with EVs that have rapid charging capability.
- Charging time: 30-60 minutes
Charging up in changing seasons
The weather affects how much energy your electric car consumes. You have a larger range in summer and smaller range in winter.
Charging on the go
Don't forget to download the Zap-Map app to find the nearest charge station when you're out and about.
499 new devices added to the Zap-Map database over the last 30 days*
9,698 charging locations over the last year (Sept 2018 - Sept 2019)*
*27/09/2019 ZapMap stats
How far is the range?
An EVs range is dependent on the battery size (kWh). The higher the EV battery kWh = more power = travel further.
- Range: 125 miles
- Equivalent to a journey from Bristol to Snowdonia National Park
Hyundai Kona Electric
- Range: 250 miles
- Equivalent to a journey from London to the Lake District
- Range: 220 miles
- Equivalent to a journey from Edinburgh to Birmingham
EV, Hybrid, Plug-in Hybrid
Electric cars are powered by electricity from the grid. The electricityis stored in the rechargeable battery that is used to power the electric motor - taking you from A to B.
Plug-in Electric (PEV)
- Purely powered by electricity
- No petrol or diesel required
- No emissions produced
Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV)
- Powered by electricity and fuel
- Switch between the battery and fuel engine
- Can be plugged in to charge
- Powered by fuel and electricity
- Cannot be plugged in to charge
- Charged through regenerative braking
Electric vs Petrol
To manufacture a mid-sized EV with an 84-mile range will result in about 15% more emissions than manufacturing a similar petrol vehicle. However the running costs and emissions after manufacture are considerably lower for EVs.
| ||Fuel||Tax||Loss of Value||Insurance||Servicing & Tyres||Total|
|3.7p per mile||£0||£16,707||£1,089||£322 + £243||67p per mile|
|14.2p per mile||£445||£15,066||£824||£528 + £87||74p per mile|