Do you know how many types of electric cars there are? The World of Electricity explains what are the types of electric cars that exist, in addition to explaining how electric cars work and what is their respective autonomy.
An electric car, which in English is EV of an electric vehicle, is a type of vehicle-powered by an electric motor. Unlike combustion engines, the electric motor uses chemical energy stored in rechargeable batteries, which is then converted into electrical energy to power the car’s electric motor, which is responsible for converting it into mechanical and other energy, enabling the car to move and user comfort is allowed.
Electric cars are called zero-emission vehicles because they are not polluting, that is, they do not emit any harmful gases or considerable noise since electric motors are quieter than combustion engines. Electric vehicles are divided into several types and are not always 100% electric.
Types of Electric Cars
The types of electric cars are divided by acronym and the first acronym that exists is EV, which stands for Electric Vehicle. Automobiles that fall under EV are those that use electric power to move around, but EVs fall into several types.
Types of Electric Cars: BEV
The first type of electric vehicle is 100% electric, generally called a BEV (battery electric vehicle), and uses no fuel other than the electric energy of the batteries. Some examples are Tesla cars like the Model X, Model S and Model 3.
Purely electric cars are more expensive, but maintenance is much cheaper and does not emit gases. The main reason why 100% of electric vehicles cannot completely replace combustion cars is the energy density of the batteries and the infrastructure needed to charge the batteries. There are still many more gas stations than charging stations.
Types of Electric Cars: HEV
One solution that automakers have found is to create hybrid vehicles, which take advantage of the efficiency of batteries, but also allow greater autonomy with gasoline. Hybrid vehicles received the acronym HEV (Hybrid Electric Vehicle), for having a gasoline engine, fuel tank, batteries and one or more electric motors.
The combustion engine moves the car and generates energy to charge the batteries. The electric motor is used to make the car more efficient or even increase the torque by combining the power of the engines. Both engines can be used at the same time, but this depends on the purpose of each manufacturer.
HEV cars are fueled with gasoline and all energy comes from gasoline or regenerative brakes, so they cannot be charged directly with electricity. HEVs have longer autonomy than BEVs and use much less fuel than cars with a combustion engine. The cost per km is less than a combustion vehicle.
On the other hand, the mechanics of hybrid vehicles are more complex, as they have the mechanics combined of an electric car with that of a combustion vehicle, two types of engines to provide maintenance and even batteries to change when the time comes. There are dozens of hybrid car models on the market from virtually all manufacturers.
Types of Electric Cars: PHEV
The third type of electric car is the PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid), similar to an HEV, but in addition to being able to fill with gasoline, it can also be supplied directly by electric energy. The PHEV electric vehicle allows you to use the fuel tank for longer journeys, and to use electricity in the daily journeys, saving much more fuel per km.
And since the combustion engine in PHEV tends to be less used, maintaining PHEV is a little cheaper than HEV. Several brands already have PHEV electric cars like the Porsche Panamera SE and Ford Fusion Energy. There is another acronym that does not fit in electric cars and that is ICE, which means the internal combustion engine. It is used to refer to cars with a combustion engine like diesel or gasoline cars.
Positive and negative points of Electric Cars
We made a table to facilitate your understanding of the types of electric vehicles and put other general characteristics of each electric vehicle category to facilitate the comparison, see the image below.
The BEV car is purely electric, HEV has gasoline and electric engines, PHEV also has both types of engines. In ICE and HEV vehicles, the main highlight is fast fueling. In PHEV vehicles the highlight is in the ways of refueling since the cars can be charged by the outlet both at home, and in chargers around the city, in addition to the option of gas stations. BEV vehicles have 4 points of prominence, the price per Km, maintenance cost is the lowest of all, does not require an oil change and does not emit gases yet.
Electric car has a radiator?
A very common question is whether an electric car has a radiator? Depending on the type of electric car it does. If a hybrid car has a combustion engine, the car certainly needs a front radiator, as combustion engines generate more heat than movement. In this image, you can see a Tesla Model S front radiator that is a BEV car, but not all-electric cars are like that.