Range Anxiety 2.0 and Electric Vehicles

BMW i | October 22nd, 2014 by 2
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We’ve noticed a trend that we find very interesting, we call it Range Anxiety 2.0.

This article first appeared on electric-bmwblogspot via InsideEVs, written by Peder Nordby.

A mid month break from our Driving to Net Zero Energy challenge and time for an observation.

As a two BMW i3 family, Julie and I have many opportunities to talk to interested people about electric cars, the question about range is always the first one to be asked.  We’ve noticed a trend that we find very interesting, we call it Range Anxiety  2.0.

With the quickly escalating pace of plug in sales and the greater choices in the marketplace, be aware of Range Anxiety 2.0 because it can become a costly mistake that you may regret shortly after taking delivery of your car.


We’re all familiar with the term “Range Anxiety” which generally describes the fear of not having enough electric range for your driving needs.  Range Anxiety is combated by the car makers with a variety of tools such as software navigation aids and DC fast charging in pure electric cars.

Perhaps the single greatest way to ease Range Anxiety is the plug in hybrid or PHEV models which get between 6 miles and 40 miles of pure electric range paired with a gasoline engine that takes over when the battery is drained and that can drive you hundreds of more miles.

Many of my family members, friends and colleagues have purchased PHEV’s. Not quite willing to take a major leap into a full EV they go the PHEV route. They all love their cars and electric driving, but to a person, after a few months they all wish they had bought a car with more electric range.

That’s Range Anxiety 2.0 and I’m hearing it more and more often.

Range Anxiety 2.0:  The realization that you have  made a multi year financial commitment buying or leasing a car with less electric range than you desire soon after taking delivery.

Comments such as:  “If I only knew how much I liked electric driving I would have never bought this car as I now want even more electric range”  or “How do I trade my car in after only a few months? I’d really love to get into a full electric”  or “I’m hooked and I want more, do you know anyone that wants a six month old car?”    I hear these all the time now.

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Of course many drivers are happy to be in a PHEV like a Chevy Volt, Ford Energi or Plug in Prius and that the combination or EV and gasoline suits their driving needs just fine.

Programs such as BMW’s i3, three day test drives are outstanding ways for folks to get an idea if the EV model or the BEVx, a range extended model that still gets 70-90 miles of EV range is the best for them.

If your newish or interested in electric driving, are thinking about buying or leasing an EV or PHEV and you have concerns about Range Anxiety, make sure you consider the effects of Range Anxiety 2.0 so that you don’t regret buying a car with too little electric only range.


All the drivers that I know want more electric range than they have with their plug in hybrids. Talk to other drivers, research the cars and websites such as Inside EV’s and seriously look at your driving needs and the range you require.

Don’t make the mistake of buying too little EV range in your next car.
That’s Range Anxiety 2.0

2 responses to “Range Anxiety 2.0 and Electric Vehicles”

  1. CDspeed says:

    The thing that gets me about PHEV drivers especially Volt drivers is they say they’re driving an electric car, and they charge more often then drivers of pure electric cars. They seem to be a type of person who really wanted to go electric, but they couldn’t do without a gasoline security blanket. Some people buy them because they know it fits their driving needs better. But your not really driving electric if your charging often to maintain a short electric range, and trying to prevent your onboard generator from starting. The i3 REx is more of a true electric car despite its little two-cylinder engine, because unlike most PHEVs its electric range is greater then its gasoline range. The i3 REx’s generator is only there to backup the electric range, whereas the Volt has a short electric range, and then goes on for a few hundred miles buring gas.
    (For the record my i3 is pure electric, and not equipt with the REx)

  2. Choddo says:

    Great article and I feel the same about my lexus hybrid. I can only drive it at 6mph now. I feel I must bring your attention to the most concerning thing above though; we must forbid any use of i3 photos with the wheels the wrong way round. It’s too upsetting.

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