Browse Publications Technical Papers 2013-01-0494
2013-04-08

Cost Effective Annual Use and Charging Frequency for Four Different Plug-in Powertrains 2013-01-0494

Vehicles with electrified powertrains, such as hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs), plug-in HEV (PHEVs), and AEVs (all-electric vehicles using grid-supplied battery energy exclusively), are potentially marketable because of low operating costs, but each comes with a significant initial cost penalty in comparison to a conventional vehicle (CV) powered by an internal combustion engine. Accordingly, a high rate of utilization is necessary for cost effectiveness. This paper examines the projected future (2020) cost effectiveness of several alternative powertrains within a standard compact sedan glider: an AEV and a set of selected input-split and output-split HEV and PHEV powertrains with various battery power and energy storage capabilities. Vehicle performance and consumption rates of fuel and electricity were estimated using vehicle simulations, and vehicle prices were estimated using cost models. The National Household Travel Survey was used to characterize average daily travel distance for home-based trips. Fuel and electricity consumption were estimated for two distinct types of travel: (a) near-home daily use (days in which all trips are ≺240 km) and (b) intercity travel (days in which at least one trip is ≻240 km). Two indicators of cost effectiveness were examined: (1) total annualized vehicle, electricity and fuel costs for a decade of use, and (2) grid kWh used per year per dollar of incremental vehicle expense. Depending on assumptions about fuel prices, frequency of charging, and intercity driving, it was found that either CVs, HEVs, input-split PHEVs, or AEVs can be most cost effective.

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