Fuelling Cars

March 1, 2013 | By | In News

It’s no secret that the world’s resources of fossil fuels are slowly depleting. It takes thousands of years for oil reserves to form, but far less time to pump it out of the ground and use it up in manufacturing and for fuel. Although the world has finally started to sit up and take notice, and many of us are now into the swing of reducing, reusing and recycling, one day not too far in the future, the petrol pumps will finally run dry. And what will happen then?

Thankfully, our favourite car manufacturers are one step ahead, and have already started to develop the technology that will keep us out of the dark ages. Where once electric cars were a bit of a joke in the motoring community, engineering advancements mean that they’re starting to become a viable alternative to petrol-fuelled vehicles. Whilst they still may not be the first choice for motoring enthusiasts, the tech is coming forward in leaps and bounds; by the time the petrol runs out completely, you hopefully won’t notice the difference between your favourite car and the best electric alternative.

Electric cars are propelled by an electric motor, using electrical energy stored in batteries. Currently many electric cars are charged using electricity which originated from fossil fuels, but as renewable sources become more common, the use of electricity to charge and power vehicles should significantly reduce our reliance on oil, coal and gas. An electric car is cheaper to run, and produces zero CO2 emissions when running. Their engines are also more efficient; as much as 80% of the energy produced is lost as heat in a conventional combustion engine, making them incredibly inefficient in comparison.

Currently, however, although electric cars can cover the full range of speeds that a conventional car can, their performance is significantly reduced due to their reliance on electricity. The distance they can travel is limited on how long one charge can power them, and full charging times can be upwards of 8 hours. Not only that, but there is currently a lack of infrastructure in the UK to support electric cars; a lack of charging points is a problem for anyone living outside of London. However, the electric car looks to be the best bet for when the petrol pump runs dry – what do you think?

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