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PHOTO CAPTION: Ford Focus EV allows the author to drive 220 miles for the equivalent price of a $3.66 gallon of gasoline.

My Electric Car Is Saving Me Money Right Now

Loveland, CO resident Peter Webb drives a Ford Focus EV and has the operations cost numbers to demonstrate its savings.

Published: 09-Mar-2014

I read the recent letter, "Electric cars are not a good investment," with dismay, but of course, the numbers were hardly accurate.

As an owner of a 2013 Ford Focus electric, I can reveal accurate numbers. It is true the manufacture of an electric car has a larger carbon footprint, but beyond this, the carbon footprint during use depends on where you get electricity. For example, in California with a much cleaner grid, the EV wins, no contest, versus gas, but in the Rocky Mountain region, we have a "dirtier" grid; thus, an EV in Colorado is like driving a gas car getting 30 mpg, based on a recent report.

The Ford Focus EV is about $32,490, compared to the gas version at $23,400 with the same options — a difference of $9,090. But Mr. Wallace forgot the $7,500 federal tax credit and Colorado's $6,000 tax credit. At this point we are negative $4,410. The Focus EV gets about 74 miles per charge. The cost to charge cited by Mr. Wallace is an often-quoted "average" ($2-$3), but in Colorado we have low electric rates. Ford Focus EV 23 kilowatt battery times 0.6180 KW/H = $1.42. Thus, I can drive 222 miles for $3.66, the price of one gallon of gas.

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