jkenny23 wrote:Are you not considering hybrids for the larger initial cost? Priuses are dead on reliable from what I've read (and my personal experience with a 2011 as my second car), and with electricity prices as crazy as they are for me in California, it's cheaper per mile to drive the Prius, though I get free charging at work so all my commuting is with the Leaf. Sadly longer range EVs are still very much in a higher tier price bracket, and look like they're going to stay that way for at least a decade.
Since I've been keeping track in 2015, my total cost per mile including maintenence for my Prius is $0.066, and since I've bought it, is $0.044 for the Leaf (thankfully greatly offset by free charging, otherwise at $0.279/kWH would be $0.074/mi at 4.2mi/kWH).
Here in Colorado my electric rate is much cheaper than California's (around 10 cents per kWh). And I also can charge for free at work and some other places. (Of course good things don't last forever.)
I've seriously considered buying a hybrid. In fact with both the Colorado and Federal tax cuts I could get $9500 off of a new Prius Prime. And after driving a 1985 VW Golf for several years that consistently gets over 55mpg, a hybrid would likely be the only kind of car that would make me feel good about the fuel mileage. But the numbers don't crunch because, like you said, the high initial cost. Even a used Prius would be more expensive to own and operate than a cheap used ICEV, at least according to Edmunds TCO. And this may just be coincidence, but I keep finding lots of hybrids around here with dead traction batteries. I don't know if it's the cold or the steep terrain around here or just coincidence. I also understand that the cold offsets the fuel mileage quite a bit (well I guess it does in an all-electric too). The coldest I've seen it is -52°F. The second coldest record in Colorado was set not too far from here at -60°F. Most winters it gets down below -30°F for a few days.
Just yesterday I drove over 150 miles in the Leaf and went up more than 10,000 ft and down more than 10,000ft, starting at 7°F in the morning and getting back at 25°F at night with a peak ambient temperature of around 58°F. Battery temp bars ranged from 3 to 5. Charging off of level 2 with about 65 miles between charging stations, I got all my work done with time to spare. The total cost of electricity was $0 for the entire trip. Not bad for a 24kWh, 11-bar Leaf!
It just feels like the Leaf just barely makes it though. I pulled up to my house with only 9% left on the battery.