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Some electric vehicle owners say no need for "range anxiety"

“Range anxiety” not an issue says some EV owners
“Range anxiety” not an issue says some electric vehicle owners 02:18

Detroit — In the year since Chris Ashley from Frederick, Maryland, first plugged in his new electric Ford F-150, his fears of running out of juice have disappeared.

"It's foolish to think that you won't have range anxiety in the beginning," Ashley, who is charging up for a summer road trip, told CBS News. "However, the more you drive the vehicle, the more you start to learn how to plan your trips, and how to charge, and when to charge." 

According to a survey earlier this year by the Canadian Automobile Association, two-thirds of drivers worried about not having enough range prior to their vehicle purchase, but after owning an electric vehicle, that dropped to 30%. 

One reason was better battery technology coupled with more vehicle options. A Lucid sedan, for example, claims to have a range of over 500 miles per charge. However, its nearly $140,000 price tag is a budget buster.

A study published in the journal Energies in February found that 25% of people could do all their driving in an EV with a range of just 143 miles, with the help of a home charger.

"On average, EVs are getting around 250 or even up to 300 miles of range," said Alex Knizek, manager of auto testing and insights for Consumer Reports. "That is a totally appropriate amount for the amount of driving most people do."

"As far as range anxiety goes, we're really starting to see charging anxiety be the more prominent issue," Knizek said. "Chargers are less available than gas stations."

There are nearly 54,000 publicly available fast charging stations nationwide, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. The majority are along the coasts, while several states have fewer than 100.

Those chargers are vital for longer drives, and they can provide an 80% charge in as little as 20 minutes. The average fuel stop, however, is closer to two minutes. 

Consumer Reports reported last month that Ford had reached a deal with Tesla for its Ford EV owners to use about 12,000 Tesla public fast chargers across the U.S. and Canada.

Donna Dickson, lead engineer for the Ford Mustang Mach-E, says the charging time has to improve.

"I think it comes down to, how quick can you stop, like a gas station stop, to charge it," Dickson said. "We have to come together and make that infrastructure so we can get more people in these vehicles, and feel comfortable with it."

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