With more than 50 EV and PHEV models now available, you finally have a full range of choices. Here are the top things to consider when you make your purchase.

What type of EV do you need?

Just like a gasoline car, electric vehicles come in all types and sizes, including: sedans, SUVs and trucks. How you anticipate using your vehicle will determine the type of vehicle you need. City driving only? Back country roads? Do you need lots of cabin space and a large trunk? Do you want all wheel drive? What features are “must haves?”

What’s your budget?

When considering how much you can spend, your monthly budget should include your normal gasoline bill, since you will no longer have to pay for gas. Additionally, maintenance for an EV is less expensive, since there are fewer moving parts. If you are leasing rather than buying an EV, you may be able to afford a higher monthly payment, due to your savings on gas and maintenance. And, don’t forget to take into account your rebates and incentives. They vary by where you live and may include: vehicle tax credits and rebates, charging station incentives, electricity discounts and driving perks. Here’s where you can research your incentives for owning an electric vehicle.

How far will you typically go?

Will you use your EV for your commute? Errands after work? Vacations? Electrical vehicles have various ranges that you can travel between charges. Most EV’s fall within the 200-300 mile range and have the capability of fast charging on the road. In fact, there may be several EV charging stations already along your usual route. (You can use a free app like PlugShare to map out chargers across the nation.) You may want to consider a Plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEV), which also have the ability to travel on gasoline when needed.

Where will you charge it?

If you plan to drive less than 40 miles a day, you can plug your EV into a standard 120 Volt outlet and charge your vehicle overnight at home. New electric cars come with portable charging equipment to allow you to plug in to any 120-volt outlet. If you plan to normally travel longer distances, however, you may need a 208-240V Level 2 charger. The typical Level 2 charger can replenish your battery for a 40 mile drive in less than 2 hours. DC Fast Charging can provide 10 to 20 miles of driving range per minute, but it is available at only public charging stations.

Should you buy or lease?

We typically recommend leasing EVs and PHEVs because the technology is evolving quickly and the range is consistently growing. Additionally, for those who prioritize being able to use the carpool lane with the EV HOV decal, leasing may make sense, since the decal is good for 3 years. If you anticipate that the features of a particular EV will satisfy your needs for the next few years, buying could be a better option. Here are other reasons to consider leasing.

If you are looking at buying or leasing an electric vehicle and would like some expert assistance, Cartelligent’s local advisers can help you decide which EV is best for your needs and get you a great deal on a new EV purchase or lease.

Cartelligent is an online new car buying and leasing service serving customers all over California. Since 2000, we have helped our customers get a great sales price on the vehicle they want and provided the best possible buying and leasing experience. Our local advisers are ready to help you select the right car, SUV or truck for your needs.