The driving range of all-electric cars is increasing, although not every year. Today, we will take a look at the progress from 2021 to 2022 model year cars in the United States.
The Department of Energy (DOE)’s Vehicle Technologies Office reports that the highest EPA Combined range in an electric car from the 2022 model year is 520 miles (837 km) and we know that it's the Lucid Air Dream Edition (Range version). This is an all-time record and the first 5xx result ever.
Meanwhile, the median (the middle value across the market) in the 2022 model year amounted to 257 miles (414 km), which is 24 miles or 10 percent more than in 2021MY (234 miles). However, in the 2020 model year, it was 259 miles, so this is not a record.
As we can see below, the market is evolving towards higher range values and there is already huge progress over the past 10-15 years.
Median and Maximum Range of EVs Offered for Sales in the US, 2021-2022 model years
"Note: Range is based on Environmental Protection Agency estimates. Does not include plug-in hybrid vehicles.
Source: U.S. Department of Energy and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Fueleconomy.gov website, accessed November 4, 2021."
We guess that the median will gradually increase because according to a separate report, the top-selling all-electric cars are usually the ones with a long driving range.
The number of models with more than 300 miles of EPA Combined range tripled in the past model year. At some point, the median is expected to exceed 300 miles and potentially move towards 350-400 miles to match today's gasoline cars.
Of course, because of the cost of batteries, home charging, and fast charging, BEVs are a different species than internal-combustion engine (ICE) cars, so we don't know whether BEVs will necessarily mirror ICEs in range. Maybe 400 miles median among models is not needed.