How Much Electricity Will Electric Cars Use?


By Paul Homewood

Best electric cars 2017 UK

There have been various attempts to estimate the amount of electricity needed for electric cars.

So let’s get it straight from the horse’s mouth.

Below is the spec for the Nissan Leaf, showing electricity consumption of 150Wh/Km.


Actual performance is always much worse than manufacturers say, whether petrol or other. We also know that electricity consumption will rocket when heaters, lights, windscreen wipers and so on are turned on.

It would not be unfair to add 30% onto Nissan’s figures, giving 195 Wh/km.

Assuming an average annual mileage of 12000 miles (19200 km), we get 3.74 Mwh.

With about 30 million cars on the road, that would total 112 TWh a year.

Total electricity consumption last year was 304 TWh, so there would be an increase 37%.

Assuming the cars were recharged throughout the day at the same rate, they would increase demand by 12.8 GW.

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