Study Finds That For Most Drivers, ‘Range Anxiety’ is a Foolish Reason to Avoid Electric Cars

Electric vehicles are gaining popularity, but it’s been a slow process. Cost is one factor; “range anxiety”—the fear of having to find and stop at a recharging station before you complete your trip, or running out of battery before even reaching a station—is another.

Costs are coming down and ranges are going up. But range may already be a non-factor, despite how common a concern it is.

According to a recent study published in Nature Energy Monday by researchers from MIT and the Santa Fe Institute, the vast majority of drivers would not be affected by the limited ranges of today’s electric cars. The study suggests 87% of motor vehicles on the road in the US could be replaced by electric vehicles without worry of charging throughout the day. And we’re not talking about high-end cars like Tesla—even entry-level electric cars would suffice for most drivers.

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“We find that the energy requirements of 87% of vehicle-days could be met by an existing, affordable electric vehicle,” the study reads. “This percentage is markedly similar across diverse cities, even when per capita gasoline consumption differs significantly.”

Currently, most electric cars have ranges between 70 and 90 miles per charge.