Lima car dealer unveils EVs: Tech gets bigger and bigger

LIMA — As more electric vehicles (EVs) hit the roads and more charging stations pop up nationwide, local auto dealers are stepping up to meet the car market where it is heading.

Reineke Ford held an event Thursday to provide information about the new electric vehicles that Ford is bringing to consumers. Three electric vehicles were made available for the public inspection and questions. There was the F-150 Lightning, an Mustang Mach-E and an E-transit van for the public to see, to sit in and to learn about. An F-150 Lightning was available for a test drive.

Alex Reineke said, “It’s still very new. There’s obviously still plenty of gas engine vehicles out on the road and we’re selling those everyday. Just wanted to provide people an opportunity to come out and learn a bit more about what some of these electric vehicles are about.”

Reineke said that the range and the charging times can be limiting factors when considering an EV. The range of many newer vehicles is about 300 miles on a single charge. Then the vehicle must be charged.

An electric vehicle takes longer to charge that filling the gas tank. There are various capacity of chargers that can take anywhere from thirty minutes to several hours to charge. When charging the F-150 Lightning with a standard range battery, the time can be 10 or 15 hours for a charge depending on the amps used by the charger, a 240 volt charger using either 30, 48 or 80 amps.

Ed Schetter of the Reineke Family Dealerships said, “The technology is just constantly evolving and getting bigger, and bigger and bigger.” Schetter said that a keynote speaker at the National Truck Equipment Association convention said that by 2030 they anticipate 40% of the commercial vehicles on the road are going to be electric.

John Recker from AEP Ohio said, “AEP Ohio is excited about the future of electric vehicles. We’re doing a lot to support the infrastructure – chargers across the state. In terms of the grid we are evaluating load increases for the next five and ten years out. We’re investing millions into the transmission system… We’re confident that the system will be able to handle the increase in demand for EV’s.”

EVs are environmentally friendly; they produce low or zero emissions. There are tax incentives on the federal and state levels. Utilities may offer discounts on charging stations.

EVs are more energy efficient than gasoline-powered vehicles. They convert about 60% of the electrical energy from the grid to power the wheels, while gasoline-powered vehicles convert only about 20% of the energy stored in gasoline to power the wheels.

When selecting an EV, consumers need to look at a variety of factors before choosing one vehicle that fits their needs and lifestyle.

Reach Dean Brown at 567-242-0409