Federal Fleet Training: Driving Electric Vehicles (Text Version)

This is the text version of the video Federal Fleet Training: Driving Electric Vehicles.

This video contains personal testimonials that describe how driving an electric vehicle (EV) is different from driving a gasoline-fueled vehicle and how the auto industry is preparing for more EVs in the future fleet.

[Joe Bryan, Chief Sustainability Officer, U.S. Department of Defense]

>>Joe Bryan: Why are EVs an important part of our transition to a clean energy future? The answer, for me, is: This is where the world is going, and we can't be left behind—as an agency, as a department, and as a country.

[Susanna Blume, Director, Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation, U.S. Department of Defense]

>>Susanna Blume: I think it's abundantly clear at this stage that that's the direction that we need to head in for the sake of the planet. But what I will also say is that as an EV driver, I also think it's just a better technology. The ride is quieter, it's smoother; it's just a nicer experience all the way around.

[Alex Bowie, Protection Force Group Manager, National Renewable Energy Laboratory]

>>Alex Bowie: In regards to the performance of the vehicle, its turning radius is great, especially here on a close-knit campus. It’s get-up-and-go when we have to go on the highway to get up to speed is great. There's really not as much of a transition as you would typically experience in a gas vehicle. It's a lot smoother of a transition as you go through the gears, which feels safer in a way.

>>Susanna Blume: Yeah, I really like driving my electric vehicle. I like it a lot more than any gas-powered car I've driven. It's really quick. It's really quiet. The ride is very smooth. It handles better because the weight is more evenly distributed. It's just hands-down superior.

>>Joe Bryan: For me, they're just a better technology. I drive an EV. My kids are all learning to drive on an EV. And in fact, we have an EV and we also have an internal-combustion engine, which is a minivan, and my kids strongly prefer the EV because I think they feel more in control. It's more responsive. It's got features for a new driver that actually they really prefer—aside from the fact that I'm sure they would prefer to drive the EV than driving a minivan in the first place, but that's probably common across kids.

[Cabell Hodge, Federal Fleet Project Leader, National Renewable Energy Laboratory]

>>Cabell Hodge: So, when I'm looking for a public charging station, there are a bunch of different apps that you can get on your phone. The one that I like to use is actually the DOE app. It's the Alternative Fuels Data Center. A big part of the Biden initiative is to make sure there is an electric charging station, and a solid one—so 150 kilowatts, four different chargers—within one mile of the highway anywhere that's more than 50 miles from another fast charger.

>>Susanna Blume: For the daily driving that I do, I only have to charge like once or twice a month usually in the warmer weather, and so it's just not that much of a burden. I think a lot of people think it's going to be really hard to keep an EV charged and it's going to be complicated and kind of scary, but it's not. It's just very easy, and they're so cheap to own because there aren't moving parts or an internal compression engine or even a transmission. You know, all those big expensive things that can go wrong in a conventional car are not in an EV.

[Julian Bentley, Managing Director, Bentley Energy Consulting]

>>Julian Bentley: Almost all the automakers have announced major investments in domestic EV and battery production. So what does that mean for the domestic electric vehicle market?

[U.S. map shows locations of active and planned battery plants and their battery production capacity.]

By 2025, many new battery plants currently under construction will come online, bringing total capacity to 656 gigawatt hours and enough to support 6.3 million more EVs than today. It is crucial to prepare for this tidal wave of EVs by becoming comfortable with EVs in the fleet and deploying EVSC to support all of these future EVs.

>>Joe Bryan: I'm sort of notorious amongst some of my colleagues of saying, “Hey, just take the keys and go drive the car; just go out for a spin.” And I think that's one of the things that I would tell someone who hasn't driven an EV and is skeptical or is considering, should just go to a local dealer and drive the car. And I don't think it matters which car you drive because the experience in the EVs that I've driven⁠—I've driven a bunch⁠—is pretty similar in terms of some of the attributes that I just really like, like the responsiveness of the vehicle, playing around with regenerative braking for a new driving experience, and they're just fun to drive.

[Caption: Learn more about electrifying your fleet: https://www.energy.gov/eere/femp/electric-vehicles-federal-fleets]