Is an electric car worth it?

12 minute read Published on Jan 9, 2024 by BrokerLink Communications

A family with little children loading their electric car with beach picnic luggage and waiting as the car is charging

If you’re considering buying an electric car, then you’re probably wondering: Is it really worth it? Given the many hidden costs of owning an electric car, not to mention all that you must do to prepare your home for electric car, purchasing an EV is a big decision. Below, we provide more information on electric cars to help you decide if they are worth it.

How do electric cars work?

First, before you buy an electric car, it’s important to understand how these types of cars work. One of the biggest differences between gas vs electric cars and hybrid vs electric cars is how they run. An electric car runs on an electric car battery. Charged batteries give off energy, which is then converted into power by the car’s electric motor and distributed to the wheels. Unlike gas or hybrid cars, electric cars do not rely on gas or diesel to run. They do not have any type of combustion engine. Instead, they rely solely on the electric car battery, which is charged using electricity. Many electric car owners choose to install charging stations in their homes. That said, there are also many public charging stations, which are often faster, where you can charge your EV.

Considerations before buying an electric car

To help you decide if buying an electric is worth it, we dive into a few key considerations surrounding electric cars. For most people, the most important factor is cost. The reality is that buying an electric car is likely to cost you more money than buying a hybrid or gas vehicle. This is not only due to the higher price tag of the car but also the other related costs of owning an EV, like installing an electric car charger at home or replacing your electric car battery if it dies. Keep reading to learn more about some of the key considerations to make before buying an electric car. This can help you determine if it’s worth it for you:

The price of the car

The price of the electric vehicle is the first and largest cost that comes with owning an EV. Experts estimate that electric cars currently cost an average of $10,000 more than gas-powered vehicles. This is a large sum of money. Plus, depending on the make and model of EV you’re looking for, this number could be a lot higher.

For example, Tesla models range in price from $50,000 to $110,000, so depending on which model you’re after, an EV could end up costing you a lot more than a gas or hybrid SUV. For Tesla car insurance quotes, contact BrokerLink. This higher price tag is due to the advanced technology that EVs use, as well as the higher cost of EV batteries; the battery alone can be worth between $10,000 and $20,000. The good news is that the price of EVs is expected to drop as they become more mainstream. For a list of reliable electric cars, visit our blog for all the information you need to make an informed decision.

Higher auto insurance rates

Another cost-related factor to be aware of when purchasing an electric vehicle is the higher cost of auto insurance. Electric car insurance may cost more than insurance for a gas or hybrid vehicle, especially if you choose a high-value EV like a Tesla Model X. That said, there are many factors that influence Toronto car insurance costs beyond the make and model of your car. For instance, your age, driving record, gender, home address, and how frequently you drive can all influence your rates.

Charging your electric vehicle

When you own an electric car, you will need to charge it. You generally have two options: a public charging station or an at-home charging station. It’s important to know how electric charging stations work, as well as how much they cost. Public charging stations tend to work faster than at-home charging stations.

For example, DC fast chargers are known to be able to charge electric car batteries from empty to full in less than 30 minutes. This is in stark contrast to most at-home chargers, which will take a number of hours or even overnight to charge an EV battery. That said, DC chargers are more expensive to use and continued use of them can affect battery life. More specifically, it can degrade your battery, causing it to wear down and diminish its capacity. That is why a key part of hybrid and electric car maintenance is to use Level 1 and 2 chargers most of the time instead of relying solely on DC (Level 3) chargers.

Further, when using a public charging station, you will either be charged by the minute or by the kWh of electricity used. At-home charging stations will also cost money, though after the initial installation which can cost up to $2,500, they are generally far less expensive than public charging stations. However, you should expect to see an increase in your monthly utility bills if you’ve never had an electric car before. Another fact to note about charging your electric car is that it may take longer to charge your EV in the winter than it will during the summer. For example, a Level 1 charger can take 36 hours or more to fully charge an EV in the winter.

Electric vehicle batteries

The car battery that your EV runs on is another consideration when deciding between an electric car and another type of car. EVs run on electric car batteries, which are usually lithium-ion batteries. These batteries are far more expensive than traditional car batteries, and they also have shorter lifespans.

The average EV battery can cost anywhere from $10,000 to $20,000, while the average lifespan of an EV is 100,000 miles. Thus, if your electric car battery breaks down or is damaged, the cost of replacing it could be incredibly high. Thankfully, many EVs come with warranties that cover battery breakdowns within a certain number of years or miles. There are also ways that you can extend the battery life of your EV, such as by charging it to 80% instead of 100% or avoiding DC chargers as much as possible.

Electric vehicle repairs

At this point, it likely won’t come as a surprise that electric cars come with higher vehicle repair costs. This is partially due to the higher cost of the parts but is also due to the fact that since EVs are newer, fewer mechanics and auto body shops are experienced in repairing them. This means that not only will finding a repair shop that can adequately fix your EV be difficult but it will likely be more expensive.

Modification options

Adding modifications to any car can be an exciting prospect, but electric vehicles might be especially exciting. Why? Due to the many state-of-the-art, cutting-edge options that may be available to you.

For instance, Tesla offers a self-driving option that many drivers find fascinating. However, depending on the modifications you choose to add, it can significantly drive up the cost of the vehicle.

The pros and cons of electric cars

Now that you know more about what to consider before buying an EV, let’s dive into a clear list of the pros and cons:


Fast acceleration

One pro of electric cars is their fast acceleration. These vehicles are known for their impressively quick acceleration. As an example, the Tesla Model 3 can go from 0 to 60 miles per hour in just 3.1 seconds. Meanwhile, Kia’s EV6 can do the same in 3.4 seconds. This is made possible due to the fact that EVs provide instant torque, unlike gas-powered cars which can only achieve maximum torque at certain speeds. Thus, if you care about speed, an electric car might be the vehicle for you.

No gas emissions

Another major plus of electric cars is that they do not have any gas emissions. Emissions have become one of the main problems with gas-powered vehicles due to the negative consequences for the environment. Electric vehicles eliminate this problem entirely as they do not require gas or diesel fuel to run.

Better tax credits and incentives

Many governments across Canada, including the federal government, have started offering tax credits and incentives to those who drive eco-friendly cars. While you can qualify for an incentive by driving a hybrid car, drivers of electric cars typically qualify for larger credits.

You don’t have to pay for gas

Although electric cars come with a higher price tag, one way that you save money by driving an electric car is through the fact that you no longer have to pay for gas. With gas prices on the rise, never having to put your credit card in at a gas pump may come as a high relief.

Convenient refuelling

Recharging an electric car is much more convenient than refuelling a gas-powered car. Why? You can do so from the comfort of your own home. Since all you need to do is plug your EV into an outlet, you can easily do this in your garage. You won’t need to travel to a gas station or stop on your long commute home, taking time out of your busy day to refuel.

Prepares you for the inevitable

One last advantage of buying an electric car is that it brings you into the future and prepares you for the inevitable. What do we mean by this? The reality is that gas-powered cars are being phased out in favour of electric vehicles. Automakers all over the world have vowed to stop producing gas-powered vehicles in the next decade or less, which means soon enough there will come a time when the majority of cars on the market are electric vehicles. Why not jump on the bandwagon now?


Higher upfront costs

The main drawback of electric cars at the moment is that they are more expensive than hybrid or gas-powered cars. In particular, the upfront costs of purchasing an EV are greater. Further, they may cost more to maintain, such as if the battery breaks and needs to be replaced.

Shorter range

A second con of owning an electric vehicle is their shorter range. Unlike gas-powered cars that can typically travel up to 400 miles on a full tank of gas, the average electric car can only go between 200 and 300 miles before needing to be recharged. That said, if you can afford a luxury EV, some of these can travel up to 500 miles.

Time it takes to charge

One last drawback of owning an EV is that depending on the type of charging station you use, it can take a considerable amount of time to charge your car. For example, if you only have a Level 1 charging station, it can take 12 or even 36 hours to charge a vehicle, especially if you live in a cold climate. While a Level 2 charging station, the most common type of at-home EV charger, won’t take as long, it will still take a number of hours until your vehicle is fully charged.

How to save money on an electric car

If you're interested in buying an electric car but are put off by the high price tag, check out the list below. The BrokerLink team has put together the following list of tips to help you save money on an electric car:

Qualify for an electric car insurance discount

There are many types of auto insurance out there, and although car insurance can be expensive, you can receive a discount if you drive an electric car. Many auto insurance companies in Canada offer discounts to drivers of eco-friendly vehicles to incentivize people to go green. You can also qualify for car insurance discounts by bundling home and auto policies or buying multiple auto insurance policies.

Look for complimentary charging stations in your area

Although many public charging stations cost money to use, some are free. For example, certain hotels, university or college campuses, and office buildings have free EV charging stations on their premises. It might take a bit of digging, but it’s worth it to do some research to see if there are any public-use charging stations that are free of charge in your area. In addition, some automakers offer free charging plans with the purchase of one of their vehicles. Audi, Hyundai, Kia, Volkswagen, and Porsche all offer free EV charging for a certain period of time when you buy one of their vehicles.

Choose a safe and reliable EV

Choosing an EV with a high safety and reliability rating can also help you save money. Why? Insurance companies may lower your premium if you drive a particularly safe car. Plus, cars with state-of-the-art safety features may help you avoid an accident, and a clean record can also lower your insurance rates. Remember that accidents affect car insurance rates and other driving infractions, so we recommend doing whatever you can do to keep your record clean.

Pick an electric vehicle with a long battery warranty

Since electric car batteries can cost upwards of $20,000, choosing an EV with a long battery warranty can save you a lot of money down the line. Although typical EVs come with warranties of up to 100,000 miles or eight years, some offer extended warranties of 10 to 12 years and up to 150,000 miles.

Charge your EV at off-peak times of day

Charging your EV at off-peak times of the day is another way to save money when buying an EV. If you plan to primarily charge your electric car at home, then take advantage of the cheaper rates that come with using electricity during off-peak hours. These hours vary depending on the electrical company but most have reduced rates overnight, such as between 11:00 p.m. and 7:00 a.m.

Take advantage of government incentives

Our next tip for saving money on an electric car is to take advantage of government incentives. The federal and provincial governments of Canada offer all kinds of tax credits and incentives to people who buy electric cars. For example, Transport Canada offers up to $5,000 for those who drive fully electric cars. This is double the amount that they offer to owners of hybrid vehicles.

Select high police deductibles for your electric car insurance plan

One final way to keep electric car costs down is to save money on insurance by selecting high deductibles. The deductibles you choose are one of the main factors that influence your premium. If you want to qualify for a lower premium, choose the highest deductibles that you are comfortable paying in the event of a claim. Raising your deductible by as little as $500 or $1,000 can make a big difference when it comes to your overall premium.

Conclusion: Is it worth it to buy an electric vehicle?

By now, you may have decided one way or another whether it’s worth it to buy an electric vehicle. Ultimately, the decision is yours. For some people, it will be worth it, and for others, it won’t. If price is your main consideration and you’re looking to keep costs as low as possible, then an electric vehicle may not be the right fit. That said, if your priority is to reduce your carbon footprint or you’re fascinated by cutting-edge car technology, then an EV might be the perfect vehicle for you.

Contact BrokerLink for more insight into whether it’s worth it to buy an electric car

For more insight into whether buying an electric car is worth it, contact BrokerLink today. We can explain how electric cars differ from gas cars and hybrid cars, provide you with electric car insurance quotes, and answer basic questions about obtaining electric car insurance, such as: What documents do I need for car insurance? We can also give you a professional opinion on whether an electric car makes sense for your budget, lifestyle, and driving habits.

Further, as a full-service auto insurance brokerage, a BrokerLink insurance advisor can outline the different types of car insurance that you need in order to legally drive in Canada. We can explain how each type of insurance can protect you, as well as recommend additional coverages that may be worthwhile for you. Some of the types of car insurance that a licensed broker at BrokerLink can help you find are:

To begin your car insurance journey today, get in touch with BrokerLink. We can be reached by phone, in person at any one of our Canadian locations, or by email. You can also request a free electric car insurance quote now using the online quote tool on our website.

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