As the world shifts towards a cleaner future, almost all industries have embraced environmentally conscious practices. For instance, those who sportstream motorsport will tell you about Formula E, a single-seater motorsport championship, which was invented to show what sustainable mobility was capable of.
Since almost everyone in the automotive industry has embraced sustainable transportation solutions, electric vehicles (EVs) are now the best option for businesses that want to reduce costs and lower their carbon footprint. If you are ready to jump on the bandwagon, you are in the right place.
This write-up will guide you on how to choose the perfect electric vehicle for your business fleet.
1. Assess Your Business Needs
Choosing the perfect electric vehicle for your business will come down to the kind of business you run. For instance, the needs of a food delivery business will differ from those of a moving company.
So you should start by considering the type of vehicles you require. Do you use upcountry roads or just city roads? If you use up country roads, you will need 4-wheel drive vehicles. How far will each vehicle travel daily? Do you make short trips within the city, or are they longer? What payload capacity do you require? Is there any specialised equipment or modifications needed?
Once you answer the above questions, it’s time to think of which electric vehicle models will satisfy your needs. If your business involves frequent stops or deliveries, opt for electric vans or trucks with sufficient cargo space. Talk to various EV manufacturers and dealers to find models that match your specific requirements before settling on a model.
2. Range and Battery Capacity
The range is basically how far a vehicle can travel on a single charge. On average, modern electric cars have a range of between 200 and 300 miles. However, there are superior models with a range of up to 500 miles.
So why does range matter when choosing the best EV for your business? While there are gas stations across the country where you can stop by for a few minutes and refill petrol or diesel, you will need more time to charge your EV. Therefore, you need to choose an EV with enough range to last you at least the entire day.
For instance, if you make deliveries within a city, a 200-mile range EV would be enough, but you will need a car with more range if you cover more distance.
But do you know that the driving range of an EV can also be affected by various factors? They include;
- Battery: For starters, the size of your vehicle battery will affect your range. A battery with more kilowatts will travel further on a single charge. This kind of battery is ideal if you make longer trips or don’t have much time to charge. However, vehicles with bigger batteries will be more expensive.
- Secondly, the age of your battery will affect its range. Batteries usually lose their capacity as they age. While most EV batteries are expected to last 15 to 20 years, you can expect them to lose some range as they degrade.
- Vehicle weight: The size and weight of your car will also affect its range. Heavy vehicles such as trucks and businesses will use more kilowatts per mile than a van. This is also true if you’re transporting heavy equipment.
- Driving style and conditions: If you are driving on city roads, you don’t have much to worry about. However, off-road drivers will use more energy as they brake hard and accelerate fast. Similarly, the car will use more power during winter than in summer and spring.
3. Cost of Ownership
Electric vehicles usually have a higher upfront cost compared to petrol or diesel vehicles. However, you should look beyond the initial price tag when calculating the total cost of ownership (TCO).
TCO includes purchase price, maintenance costs, electricity expenses, and potential incentives or tax credits. Over time, many businesses find that the TCO of electric vehicles to be lower than traditional vehicles.
4. Charging Infrastructure and Speed
How do you intend to charge your EVs? Will you install charging stations at your workplace or rely on public charging networks? While charging at home or in the workplace is cost-effective, it takes longer. Therefore, you need to choose EVs with higher charging speeds.
Switching from traditional diesel and petrol vehicles to EV is not only good for the environment but will also save you money in the long run. But, it’s important to consider the above points when choosing EVs for your business fleet.
However, before committing to a large-scale purchase, consider running pilot programs with a few electric vehicles. This will allow you to assess their performance and how well they meet your fleet’s needs.