The Cost to Charge an Electric Car in Australia
Driving Electric Vehicles (EVs) is considerably cheaper than Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) ones (your stock-standard petrol engine). The cost to drive 100 km is on average estimated at $4 for EVs and $14 for ICE vehicles. Learning the basics on the cost of charging an electric car in Australia can help you determine your driving expenses.
An EV can be charged at home with your own charging system, or outside at a public charging station. In this article we will go over the basics of EV charging costs, teaching you how to calculate the home EV charging costs, and we also discuss the average cost of public electric car charging.
How to Calculate Home EV Charging Costs
To calculate the cost for charging an electric vehicle at home, you need to consider 1) the electricity rates in your location, 2) the battery size for your EV, and 3) use a simple equation.
Factor in Electricity Rates
Considering the electricity tariffs in your state is the first and most important aspect you need to calculate home EV charging costs. Table 1 shows average and updated prices that might be found across the different states in Australia:
Consider the Battery Size
The second aspect to consider is the battery size since this determines how much power your EV will be requiring from the grid. If you charge your EV with a home solar power system, you might get to charge your electric car at lower costs, but this is not the case if you are charging your EV exclusively from the grid.
The average EV battery size worldwide features a capacity of 40 kWh. To make it more interesting, we will also calculate the cost for charging an electric vehicle at home considering the battery of the Tesla Model 3, which is the most sold EV in Australia (its battery capacity is rated at 57.5 kWh).
Using the Equation to Calculate the Charging Cost
You can now use Equation 1 below to calculate an estimated cost for charging an electric vehicle at home.
EV charging cost=Electricity cost c/kWh*Battery size kWh (1)
To make a practical example, we will calculate the charging cost for the battery of the Tesla Model 3, charging from 0% to 100% considering electricity costs in Victoria.
EV charging cost=21.14 c/kWh*57.5 kWh=$12.16
After applying Equation 1 to the different states, we have calculated the cost to charge the average battery size (40 kWh) and the Tesla Model 3 battery (57.5kWh) in different states. The results are also shown below.
Cost to Charge at a Public EV Charging Station
Iit is also important to know the cost of public electric car charging as you may not always be charging at home. The cost of charging an electric car in Australia depends on the charging level and charging network; some charging stations do the work for free while others may charge you additional fees.
Free Charging Stations
Not all public charging stations feature high prices to charge an EV - some of them cost as low as $0! For instance, the Tesla Destination EV chargers featuring a charging rate of 22 kW AC are entirely free for charging Teslas.
There are other free options aside from the Tesla destination EV chargers. Jolt public charging stations do not charge you for the first 7 kWh charged, and the NRMA fast charging network is entirely free of charge. Some charging networks like ChargeFox offer free charging for 1 year for Nissan Leaf EV owners and up to 6 years of free charging for Audi e-Tron EV owners.
Level 2 EV Charging Stations
Public level 2 EV charging stations usually feature a charging rate of 22kW. These charging stations usually feature three-phase EV chargers.
Chargefox is the only public EV charging provider that currently offers level 2 AC EV charging among its options. The cost of public electric car charging at these stations varies from 0 to 30 c/kWh. The current price is found in the Chargefox app.
Some apps like A Better Route Planner (ABRP) charge a small fee for helping you find free and available EV charging stations. Subscription may cost around $7 for 1 month of usage and up to $70 for the whole year. Another popular app which is entirely free, is the PlugShare app.
Level 3 EV Charging Stations
Level 3 EV charging stations or DC Fast Charging (DCFC) stations feature the fastest charging rates available for EVs. Fast charging stations feature charging rates of up to 50 kW, while ultra-rapid DCFC stations can deliver a power rate of up to 350kW to charge an EV battery. Since DCFCs can generally charge an EV just within an hour due to their high power capacity, they also have the highest charging rates.
The following list shows the cost of charging an electric car in Australia at DC fast charging and ultra-fast charging stations located across the country:
EV Fast Charging stations:
- Chargefox DC Fast Chargers (up to 50 kW): 40 c/kWh
- Jolt DC Fast Chargers (up to 25 kW): 42 c/kWh
- Evie DC Fast Chargers (up to 50 kW): 60 c/kWh
EV Ultra-Fast Charging stations:
- Chargefox DC Ultra-Fast Chargers (up to 350 kW): 60 c/kWh
- EVIE DC Ultra-Fast Chargers (up to 350 kW): 60 c/kWh
- Tesla Superchargers (120 to 250kW): 63 c/kWh
Idle fees are small amounts of money that EV drivers have to pay for leaving their vehicle parked at a public charging station after it has been fully charged. This fee motivates EV drivers to leave or at least relocate their vehicles after it has been charged, giving the opportunity to other EV drivers to charge their EVs. Idle fees may vary depending on the EV charging station owner and location.