Electric cars drive purely electrically, but usually not very far: the models available on the market from 2015 cover around 200 km on one battery charge. There are already electric drives with a range of well over 500 km, for example from Tesla, but these are still very expensive models that are not very suitable for everyday use.
Hybrid cars combine a fuel and an electric drive , the fuel engine is usually a gasoline engine (gasoline engine). This has proven to be the most efficient concept so far, but there are already hybrid diesel vehicles such as the Citroën DS5, which the French President François Hollande drives as the state car. Which concept – electric or hybrid – could prevail in the medium and long term?
The actual environmental balance
Experts have calculated it: 100 kilometers in an electric car cost the equivalent of 0.7-0.9 liters of fuel in terms of electricity. Hardly any petrol or diesel can get by with much less than four to six liters, and it is often significantly more. Of course, the electricity must also be produced in the power plant, so the electric car is not environmentally neutral. Nevertheless, this value is enough for the proponents of electromobility to insist on its advantages. But that’s window dressing, say real experts. Forget the use of rare raw materials such as cobalt, lithium and nickel in the production of electric motors and batteries, which leads to high environmental pollution in Africa. Copper production – essential for an electric motor – also has serious environmental effects. Critics like the emeritus professor Friedrich Schmidt-Bleek refer to this, once Vice President of the Wuppertal Environmental Institute. But neither politicians nor the automotive industry, and certainly not motorists, have such calculations on their radar. However, if society thinks a little more thoroughly, pure electric mobility could lose much of its eco-charm.