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Electric Vehicle Study Praises Tech, but There's a Catch

In the following video, Motley Fool industrials analyst Blake Bos takes a look at a study done by Scientific American, which says that an electric vehicle can drive 6,500 miles on one gigajoule of energy invested into producing the electricity required to propel the vehicle. This was nearly twice the distance that a gasoline-powered car could go on the same amount of energy. But, there's a catch. Blake tells us what the caveat is, and why electric vehicle investors may have a while to wait before we crack this nut.

Near-faultless execution has led Tesla Motors to the brink of success, but the road ahead remains a hard one. Despite progress, a looming question remains: Will Tesla be able to fend off its big-name competitors? The Motley Fool answers this question and more in our most in-depth Tesla research available for smart investors like you. Thousands have already claimed their own premium ticker coverage, and you can gain instant access to your own by clicking here now.

Read/Post Comments (5) | Recommend This Article (2)

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  • Report this Comment On April 12, 2013, at 8:13 PM, Marshgre wrote:

    Teslas lithium ion batteries do NOT use rare earths. Nor does the drive motor.

    Some do but Tesla does not.

  • Report this Comment On April 12, 2013, at 8:14 PM, KillaCycle wrote:

    You account for the energy to produce the battery, but you forget the energy used to produce the engine, transmission, exhaust system, fuel system, etc. Those components are eliminated. Also you forget the multitude of rare earth elements used to produce those eliminated engine components.

    Electric cars weigh about the same as gasoline cars, so I would guess that it takes about the same energy to produce either one.

    The cost of electricity (at retail rates) to "fuel" an electric car is about 3 cents per mile. That is better than 100 mpg at today's gasoline prices. I haven't calculated the number "gigajoules", but from the "dollars" perspective, you are way out ahead.

  • Report this Comment On April 12, 2013, at 8:19 PM, KillaCycle wrote:

    Almost forgot. There are many different types (chemistry) of lithium ion batteries. Some don't use any rare earth elements at all. LiFePO4 is a common one.

  • Report this Comment On April 12, 2013, at 11:05 PM, jstack6 wrote:

    If he is an industrials analyst he should know that Tesla has created great jobs and exports their world leading EV's all over the world. They add the drive train for Mercedes , Toyota and BMW to make their EV.s If the USA doesn't lead China will.

    He should also know that the USA imports $1 Billion a day in foreign OIL. How many jobs can that produce?

    He also knows that the gas engine and vehicle is only 15% efficient. What industry can be proud of that after 100 years of refinement.The EV is an industry in itself and the USA does and can continue to lead the way.

  • Report this Comment On April 12, 2013, at 11:20 PM, Marshgre wrote:


    When did Tesla start working with BMW? Did I miss a press release or something?

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