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Understanding how electric cars work can go a long way in influencing your purchase decision. Also, knowing how electric cars work will help you understand the difference between pure EVs and hybrids. In the subsequent sections, we shall talk about every aspect of an electric car, to explain functionalities and technologies with a sense of clarity.

How do Electric Cars work?

It will be interesting to know how electric cars work, isn’t it? There is an electric motor in the electric car and not an internal combustion engine, like traditional cars. In the electric vehicle mechanism system, a large traction battery is used to generate power. It is essential to plug it into a wall outlet or a charging station, which is also called as electric vehicle supply equipment or EVSE.

While charging, the motor takes electricity from the grid. The electricity is stored in the rechargeable battery. The power is transferred to the electric motor, which allows the wheels to move. This is how electric cars work.

For more clarity, you can refer to the above “how electric cars work diagram”.

How does the Electric Car Engine Work?

If you plan on purchasing an electric vehicle, it is necessary to be aware of how the batteries work. Firstly, it is necessary to understand how much electricity an EV consumes if you are serious about knowing how an electric vehicle works, especially in regards to power consumption. Just for the sake of simplicity, EV batteries are evaluated as KW units as a standard electric car consumes close to 2,000 kWh in energy, each year.

Therefore, electric cars usually feature auxiliary battery units that need to be charged and in turn, they provide power to the accessories and the car-specific components.

How does Electric Car Charging Work?

Different electric vehicles have different ports to connect to the given charging stations. Therefore, if you plan on purchasing a new vehicle, it is necessary to have the requisite cable handy. Most charging stations usually support three-pin charging plugs to connect to the car using a 13amp socket. Plus, you can also opt for vehicles supported socketed charging, which works more like a USB connection. Finally, there is the tethered connection to attach the cable directly to the charging point.

Types of Electric Cars

Electric cars are loosely categorized as:

  • Plug-ins

These are standard EVs that can only run on electricity.

  • Plug-in Hybrids

These cars are meant to be charged via cables and run on electricity but they also support traditional fuels, provided the vehicle is out of charge and there are no charging stations in plain sight.

  • Hybrid Electric

These cars are more like traditional, fuel-run cars that also have an electric battery, capable of being charged using regenerative braking.

Key components of Electric Vehicle:

To know how electric vehicle works, it is critical to know about the electric vehicle elements:

  • Battery:

An all-electric auxiliary is the main component that provides electricity to allow the vehicle accessories to work and run the car.

  • Charging station:

You connect your electric vehicle to an external power supply in the charging station to charge the battery.

  • Electric traction motor:

This component lets the motor run the wheels of the car.

  • DC/DC converter:

This device is critical to convert higher-voltage DC power to the lower-voltage DC power.

  • Inverter:

Converts the electric current from Direct Current (DC) into Alternating Current (AC)

  • Onboard charger:

AC electricity is converted to DC power to charge the traction battery.

  • Power electronics controller:

Another vital component to know how electric vehicles work, that controls the flow of electrical energy provided by the traction battery, the speed of the electric traction motor and the torque, is power electronics controller.

  • Cooling system:

Coolant maintains operating temperature.

  • Traction battery pack:

It stores electricity by the electric traction motor.

  • Electric Transmission:

This transfers mechanical power from the electric motor to run the car.

Electric Car Batteries – Know it’s Capacity and KWH

It is imperative to know certain things about the electric car batteries such as its capacity and unit to understand how an electric engine works. Kilowatts or kW is the unit of power. A kilowatt-hour kWh is the unit of energy. An electric car consumes on an average a 2,000 kWh of energy a year.

How long does it take to Charge?

There can be three EV charging speeds:

  • Slow: At this speed, which is rated up to 3kW, it will take 8-10 hours to charge the car.

  • Fast: Rated at 7Kw to 22kW, the charging time remains to be around 3 to 4 hours.

  • Rapid: Rated at 43 kW, the charging time is just 30 to 60 minutes.

How to Charge the battery?

You can charge the battery by plugging it into a socket or into a charging unit. The types of chargers are:

  • Three pin plug:

A standard three-pin plug can be connected to any 13 amp socket.

  • Socketed electric car charger:

This charge point can be connected to a Type 1 or Type 2 cable.

  • Tethered electric car charger:

This charge point can be attached to a cable with either a Type 1 or Type 2 connector.

How far can you Travel on a Single Charge?

How far you can travel on a single charge will depend on things like the range or the battery capacity of the vehicle, the battery size, efficiency of the car, etc. The concept of mileage is also subjective for electric cars. To cite a few examples, Volkswagen runs just 125 miles on a single charge but Hyundai Kona can run more than 250 miles, in one fully charged cycle.

Wrapping Up

Now that you are aware of how EV cars work, you must know that Electric cars are extremely innovative and can be extremely cost-effective in the long run, considering the abnormal rise in the cost of traditional fuel. However, it is always better to pair an EV with a comprehensive insurance plan to cover the unexpected yet costly damages that might show up unannounced.

If you seem confused about your choices, you can pick a relevant electric car insurance plan at Finserv MARKETS upon comparing available options.

Check Out Bike Insurance Plans Available at Finserv MARKETS

FAQs on Electric Cars

  • ✔️Is it the right time to switch to EV?

    If the initial investment isn’t a factor and you live in a city where charging stations are plenty, an electric vehicle seems like the best choice in 2021. 

  • ✔️How does an electric car engine work?

    The battery provides power to the electric car engine, which is an AC motor in most cases. Therefore, instead of a mechanical engine that moves, you can expect 90 percent fewer parts that actually show mobility.

  • ✔️How do EV charging stations work?

    In EV cars, the inverter, electric motor, and drivetrain work in harmony to send power to the wheels and take the vehicle forward.

  • ✔️Is it prudent to purchase an electric vehicle?

    Buying a used electric car can be a smart alternative because EVs have few moving parts. However, before purchasing a used EV, make sure to verify the battery's remaining performance/warranty, the state of the electric motors, the quality of the tyres, charging alternatives, and the car's mileage.

  • ✔️Is it necessary to service electric vehicles?

    Electric cars, like any other vehicle, require routine maintenance. Tyre wear and tear, as well as windshield wiper replacement and brake fluid changes, will all be required. When it's time to maintain an electric vehicle, ensure the mechanics are trained in electric vehicle maintenance.

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