Saturday, December 7, 2013

My FIT EV: 2 months and 4000 miles later

Since the day I got my Honda Fit EV (Electric Vehicle), one of the most frequent questions beyond the obvious one regarding its not really sipping any gas, has been whether it has been worth it; economically speaking.

Of course, it made sense to me when I got it i.e. exactly 2 months ago, but does it still made sense ? I decided to run the numbers.

The Basics:

Let me start though giving the details of the car first:

  • Make and Model: 2014 Honda Fit EV
  • Type: 5 seater small station wagon (EPA Class) 100% electric vehicle
  • Ownership: Lease
  • Lease cost: 0% down (paid only sales tax, as with any vehicle lease out of which got $1000 refunded by MD state) , $259/month for 3 years
  • Lease terms:
    • Unlimited miles
    • Collision Insurance included at $0
    • $0 maintenance
    • Free Home Charging Station
Now, to see if this lease cost made economic sense, I should compare total cost for this car with the total cost of any other EXACTLY similar non-electric car with exact same lease terms. Fortunately FIT EV has a gasoline sibling, the regular FIT, which runs on gas.

The problem is Honda doesn't' give these features i.e. unlimited miles and $0 collision insurance and maintenance cost on its regular FIT. Browsing Honda site, the most base model regular FIT, with $0 down option the monthly is leased out at $200/month for a 36 months term.

but as the fine print shows its only for 12,000 miles /a year beyond which Honda charges $0.15/miles:

So, at my current need of  24000/miles/year lease would cost me an outrageous $200 + 1000*0.15 = $350/month for a regular FIT. 

But since a similar lease term is not available for a regular FIT, its not easy apple to apple comparison for regular FIT lease vs. FIT EV lease.

So, I decides to go with best (i.e. the cheapest case scenario) for regular FIT, to see if I were all lucky to get best deal possible in regular FIT, would FIT EV still be a better option. Meaning what if I got a similar type of regular FIT with similar leasing terms for only $200/month lease.

Next comes the mileage driven. In last 2 months I drove 4000 miles (And yes, going the EV route was exactly for that reason, I drive a whole lot to cover my 80 miles daily commute to work).

FIT EV Calculation:

I have also been getting anywhere from 5.2 to 4.7 miles/kwh. Let us take on average 5.0 miles/kwh
The 4000 miles in that case would translate to 4000/5 = 200 kwh.
My local "effective" energy rate is 11.02c/kwh (the details on one of my previous post)
so, 200 kwh will cost me 200*11.02 cents = $22.04
Lease payment for FIT EV for 2 months: 2 * 259 = $518
Total cost (lease cost + electricity) incurrent in FIT EV: $22.04 + $518 = $530

Regular FIT Calculation:

2013 Regular FIT gas economy: 31mpg
Gas to drive 4000 miles: 400/31= 129 Gallon
cost for 129 Gallon = 129 * 3.35= $432
Lease payment for Regular FIT for 2 months: 2 * 200 = $400
Total cost (least cost + gas) incurrent in Regular FIT : $432 + $400 = $832


So, Even in the most conservative way (assuming a dealer would give me all the goodies for free while easing a regular FIT that I got in FIT EV, and assuming gas price was $3.35, though that's the lowest in last 2 months) if I would have got a regular FIT, it would have costed me $832 in gas & leasing, while driving and leasing FIT EV costed me only $530, i.e. is a saving of  36.3% 

So, if anyone asks me about my decision to go EV again, I can happily say 'so far so good' &#x263A