Electric Cars In Australia – A Break-Down Of Mazda’s MX-30
Many people would be surprised to learn that electric motors were the preferred engine type for cars from the late 1800s to the early 20th century. In fact, the first electric car is thought to have been developed by a Scottish inventor all the way back in the 1830s! The technology was in the very early stages of development at the time, which meant that speed and range was severely limited. But internal combustion had its own shortcomings with engines being big, heavy and slow. However, once manufacturers discovered the potential of petrol power, electric motors were essentially rendered extinct from the market. That is until the early 2000s when the electric motor began to make a comeback.
This renewed interest in electric power came in a few different forms, one of which being the hybrid electric vehicle. Hybrid systems vary in how they get the car moving, but the most common method uses an internal combustion engine to charge the battery array that powers an electric motor which then drives the wheels. The result of this new technology is a vehicle that is much more fuel efficient than a standard petrol car. This greatly increased the range and reduced petrol costs, making them a desirable option for many car buyers in Australia.
While hybrid technology was becoming more and more popular, the all-electric motor was quietly starting to enjoy its own decent slice of the Australian market share as an alternative to petrol power.
How Does An Electric Car Work?
Unlike hybrid technology, which is quite complicated, battery electric vehicles (EVs) are fairly simple. A series of batteries provide the electrical power to the electric motors that turn the wheels. The way the batteries and motors are configured can vary from car to car. Some may utilise an all-wheel drive system where each wheel has its own motor powered by a separate bank of batteries. Meanwhile, other cars use a central bank of batteries to power a single motor that turns either the front or rear wheels via a differential, a component that allows for the wheels to turn at different speeds,—a bit like a petrol powered car.
There are a number of benefits to making the switch to EVs, chief among them being the elimination of petrol combustion and all the downsides that come with that process. This means there are zero emissions when driving, along with reduced global consumption of refined oil. But, the best part for the consumer is the significant reduction in running costs.
As well as being the greener option, there are also big benefits to performance. Electric motors have far fewer moving parts which means less energy is lost through the mechanical process of transferring power from the pistons to the wheels (via crank shafts, flywheel, gear box, drive shaft etc). In addition to more efficient power transfer, EVs also produce much higher torque figures. The upshot of all this is a car that can move very, very fast with little effort. Some electric family saloon cars have astonishing 0 – 100km/h figures, and have been known to well and truly outperform even the most expensive and fastest supercars in the world.
The most difficult challenge that electric cars in Australia have faced in the past is probably the driving range, and the lack of infrastructure for charging batteries while on the go. However, as the technology has improved, new models of Australian electric cars tend to come with a longer range that can easily compete with their petrol powered counterparts. Furthermore, the addition of external electrical charging outlet infrastructure around the country means EVs are now well and truly a viable option, even for the most intrepid Aussie explorer.
The other drawback is the price. New technology will always come with a cost to the consumer, and electric cars are no different. Therefore, it’s inevitable that they come with a heftier price tag than their petrol alternatives. However, as more and more new cars have entered the market, affordable EVs have become more available in dealerships.
The Mazda MX-30
This past year has seen Mazda combine state-of-the-art electric technology with small SUV styling to create the all new electric MX-30—their first entry into the electric car market. This electric version of the already popular SUV is pretty impressive for a debut. It has all the bells and whistles you’d expect from a brand new Mazda, but this updated version has ditched the fuel tank in favour of a battery array.
Its electric motor puts out 107kW and generates a whopping 271Nm of torque. With its short charge time of 3 hours on a standard 240V outlet or 36 minutes on a fast charger, there’s a lot to like about the Mazda MX-30. Starting at $72,732 minus a partial refund on stamp duty from the federal government, it’s also one of the cheapest electric vehicles on the market this year. Other EVs simply don’t offer anywhere near as many features or interior space at that price point.
Get Behind The Wheel
When it comes to Mazda dealers Perth has some pretty good options, particularly if you’re wanting to take the Mazda MX-30 out for a test drive. Get in touch with us here at our Mandurah Mazda dealership to take one out for a spin and experience the future of motoring!