Electric vehicles (EVs), once the stuff of science fiction, are now becoming a reality on the roads. But before we switch gears, here are 8 things you might not have known about them.
8 Facts to Charge Up Your Knowledge About Electric Vehicles
The limited availability of charging points can put the brakes on plans to buy an EV. But fear not – Singapore is gearing up our infrastructure to support the uptake of EVs.
As part of our aim to phase out Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) vehicles, the Government plans to deploy up to 60,000 charging points by 2030, up from the estimated 2,200 currently available.
For one, we awarded a pilot tender with URA in September 2021 for more than 600 charging points to be installed across 200 public carparks.
Every HDB Town will be an EV-Ready Town by 2025, with all HDB carparks equipped with charging points. This means that nearly 2,000 HDB carparks will have charging points installed over the next three to four years!
EV Charging Operators such as SP Mobility, ComfortDelGro Engineering, Charge+ and Shell are also growing their network of chargers in locations such as commercial buildings and petrol kiosks – so look out for more charging points soon!
FACT 2: EVs can go the distance
We sometimes worry when noticing our mobile phones run out of juice. But what if this happens while you’re driving an EV?
Fret not! Just as ICE vehicles have fuel tank indicators installed, EVs will sound an alert way before the battery runs flat.
Fortunately, drivers here don’t have to be too concerned thanks to Singapore’s small size. Most of us only cover an average of 48km a day – rookie numbers compared to what most EVs are capable of. On a full charge, most EVs can cover at least 300km. The wider network of charging points also means that drivers can be assured of charging their EVs whenever required.
FACT 3: Rebates when you purchase an EV
New EV technology advancements are helping to drive down the costs of electric cars rapidly. The upfront cost of buying an electric car is estimated to rival that of an ICE car as early as 2025.
To encourage early EV adoption, the Government is also providing a wide range of incentives for EV adopters. Under the EV Early Adoption Incentive (EEAI), for example, owners who register fully electric cars and taxis from 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2023 will receive a rebate of 45% off the Additional Registration Fees (ARF) capped at $20,000. This is subject to a minimum ARF of $5,000 which has now been removed from 1 January 2022 to 31 December 2023.
Other incentives include bringing down the road tax of mass-market electric cars, and when considered together, can lower costs of electric cars substantially.
FACT 4: EVs are safe and sound
As how Capital Cities would sing it, EVs are ‘safe and sound’. There are many layers of safety surrounding EVs. First, they come equipped with a Battery Management System (BMS) that monitors, protects and ensures that the battery operates within its safety limits. This helps to prevent the risk of battery fires.
Singapore’s vehicle approval regime also adopts international automotive standards such as the UNECE R100, which helps mitigate the risk of electrical, thermal or mechanical failures. Such standards enhance the safety of the vehicles.
FACT 5: Charging EVs is also safe
Getting an electric jolt while charging your car is the last thing you want. Thankfully, there are stringent safety standards to ensure protection to people and property.
The Technical Reference 25 (TR25), Singapore’s EV charging standard, stipulates the proper installation of EV charging facilities and mandates periodic safety inspections. The Government has worked with the industry and academic stakeholders to review TR25, ensuring it incorporates the latest EV charging technologies and advancements. The revised TR25 not only allows for new charging technologies like battery swapping for motorcycles and high-powered charging up to 500kW, but it continues to prohibit the use of extension cords and charging from 13 Ampere househould socket outlets, to reduce safety incidents.
For more about National Public Charging Standards, check out the Charging Standards and Installation of EV Chargers.
FACT 6: EVs will charge up our public transport
With deliberate efforts to push for cleaner vehicles, more EVs are cruising into Singapore’s public transport sector.
LTA has procured and deployed 60 electric buses, with the eventual aim of phasing out all diesel-engine buses by 2040. Not only that, we’re working towards electrifying half of our public bus fleet by 2030! Taxi operators have also been adding EVs to their fleets as they pivot to cleaner energy sources. Our taxi operators have committed to electrify at least half of our taxi fleets by 2030.
Besides reducing carbon emissions, these battery-powered rides offer a quieter and smoother commuter experience too. It’s a win-win situation for the environment and commuters alike.
FACT 7: EVs provide a sustainability spark
Some argue that EVs aren’t any greener than cars that run on fuel. After all, electricity is produced by fossil fuels too.
But compared to an ICE vehicle, an EV emits half the amount of CO2. Switching from ICEs to EVs reduces carbon emissions by about 1.5 to 2 million tonnes – or about 50% of yearly total vehicular emissions. In an urban environment like Singapore, this accounts for nearly 4% of total national emissions annually. As such, the electrification of vehicles will be a needle mover as we work towards reducing 80% of land transport emissions by or around 2050.
For instance, the electrification of our public buses is enhancing this sustainability. The 60 electric buses now plying our roads have decreased the fleet’s carbon emissions by about 7,840 tonnes annually – equivalent to the yearly emissions of 1,700 passenger cars!
FACT 8: The future is electric
Across the world, EV sales are picking up speed – thanks to sustainability-related policies, advancements in battery technology, and a growing number of EV models in the market.
As part of the Singapore Green Plan 2030, we are making a similar push for the adoption of EVs here. From 2025, all new diesel car and taxi registrations will cease. From 2030, all new car and taxi registrations will need to be of cleaner energy models. These targets are part of our vision to have all vehicles run on cleaner energy by 2040.
From lower carbon emissions to cheaper operating costs, EVs are poised to drive the next wave of automobile growth.
So take this journey with us – it’s time to switch lanes.