I have written about this topic in the past – when we look at the total life cycle energy costs of EVs, they are usually better, but only a little better, than gas powered vehicles:

“To gain the environmental dividend that governments are looking for, users are going to have to keep them longer, drive them further than they may have done with a conventional internal combustion energy vehicle,” Powell, head of global thematic research at the firm, told CNBC’s “Street Signs Asia” on Wednesday.

He explained that a “huge amount” of carbon is emitted when materials such as steel, aluminum and glass are created and put together to manufacture vehicles. He said the problem is compounded for electric vehicles, which currently tend to be heavier on average than their gasoline-powered counterparts.

Source: Jefferies on the carbon challenges in electric vehicle manufacturing

More on the embedded lifecycle energy costs in my past posts here, here and here.

In the 1970s, I read a small book in my university library titled “Eating Oil”. This book looked at the energy costs of food production and other common activities. At that time, the majority of a vehicle’s life cycle energy costs were used in the vehicle’s manufacture. This is like an accounting fixed versus variable cost problem. The fixed costs remain high, even if you cut the variable costs (gas usage). At the article above points out, current EVs may take more energy to manufacture than current gas powered vehicles (ICE). Over time, EV production will likely improve.

By EdwardM