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AAA Offers Digital Tools to Educate Motorists about Electric Vehicles

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AAA offers digital tools to educate motorists about electric vehicles

The number of electric vehicle charging station locations in the U.S. has increased almost 1000 percent since the debut of the Nissan Leaf in 2010. There are currently 16 public charging stations in Kentucky alone, up from just one in 2011.

Despite this rapid growth, eight out of ten U.S. adults are unsure about or unlikely to buy an electric vehicle (EV) and 30 percent of them say it is due to mileage limitations and availability of charging stations locations, according to a survey by AAA.

Working with the Electric Drive Transportation Association, AAA recently added EV content to their public information website at Electric Vehicles . The new content provides basic information about electric vehicles that will help motorists determine whether an electric vehicle might be right for them. The materials also examine the various types of electric vehicles available, and help consumers understand the important differences that come with owning and operating an electric car.

"There have been major advancements in electric vehicle technology and the supporting infrastructure," said Tom Ashley, AAA East Central Senior Vice President, Automotive Services. "However, it will take time and education for the general motoring public to understand just how far these vehicles have come, and recognize the many resources available to those who drive them."

Modern EVs typically have a range of 60-100 miles, more than enough for the average driver's daily commute which the U.S. Department of Transportation says is around 16 miles one way. As to recharging, the U.S. Department of Energy reports there are now more than 5,800 charging stations available for public use. The agency has aggressively promoted expansion of the electric vehicle charging infrastructure using funds from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Additional findings from the AAA survey, fielded in July 2012, show that 26 percent of U.S. adults who are unsure about or unlikely to buy an electric vehicle (EV) cite the higher cost in general of an electric vehicle (i.e. buying, maintaining) as a reason they would be unlikely/undecided to make such a purchase. "Battery improvements, increased competition, and economies of scale are all likely to drive down costs associated with buying an EV," Ashley continued. "With no need to change oil or filters and less brake system wear and tear, maintaining an EV is actually more affordable than a conventional vehicle."

Electric vehicle drivers looking for a public charging station in their area can consult the online AAA TripTik Travel Planner TripTik or the AAA Mobile application for smartphones. About 400 EV charging stations are located at AAA/CAA Approved hotels, restaurants and attractions. A green "plug" icon accompanies listings for these establishments in Travel Guides and 2013 Tour Book guides.