You can not go far these days without seeing, reading or (just) hearing an electric vehicle. They are fast, futuristic, efficient, full of technology and most importantly, necessary for the future of sustainable transport. Although it is common to compare acceleration numbers and battery range, most people are still confused about even the most commonly used terms. From endless acronyms to crazy chemicals, our comprehensive AZ glossary makes you discuss, browse and ultimately drive electric cars with confidence.
A complete overview of EV terms you need to know:
ONEll-Electric Range (AER): The range (distance) an electric car can run solely on its own power source.
Battery Management System: The brain behind the battery. Manages power supply, temperature, regulates charging … everything the battery does is managed by BMS.
CHarge Point: Any location where you can fill up your electric sled. At home, at work or one of the 3,000 public chargers scattered around Australia. As infrastructure improves, charging points can be found throughout regional and rural Australia.
DC Charging / fast charging: The fastest way to charge your electric car. Australia has around 470 public fast chargers in our network, and more are being built as we speak. They can fully charge most models in half an hour, but are rare due to their supply costs and the more extensive electrical infrastructure required to operate them.
EV (electric vehicle): The elephant in the room! You probably have this, but for safety’s sake, it’s a vehicle that is fully powered by electricity and an electric motor.
EREV (extended range electric vehicles): Vehicles that can run on a gasoline engine if the battery becomes low. Picture with a generator in the trunk, but a little more sophisticated.
Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle: Usually associated with hydrogen, a fuel cell is an alternative power source to a traditional battery when power is generated.
GHG (Green House Gas): A gas (eg carbon dioxide) that contributes to global warming through the greenhouse effect by absorbing infrared radiation.
Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV): A vehicle that has both an electric motor and a gasoline engine. The battery charge is supplied by the petrol engine but cannot be charged by connecting an external power supply.
ICE (internal combustion engine): The ordinary gasoline-powered car that we have known for a century. Use of combustion to produce electricity. Often feels good, sounds even better, but in the end it is not a sustainable mass transport option going forward.
J1772 AC charging socket: Also known as Type 1. This socket was the standard in Australia for electric vehicles until 2018. Now replaced with Type 2 ‘Mennekes’ socket.
Kilowatt (kW): A kilowatt is a way of measuring how much power something consumes. 1,000 watts accurate.
Kilowatt-hours (kWh): Related to kW, but the difference is still important. A kilowatt-hour measures the energy something uses in kilowatts per hour.
LIB (Lithium-ion battery): Also known as a Li-ion, it is one of the most commonly used battery technologies in consumer products. Most likely, the device you are using right now is powered by a lithium-ion battery.
MEnough Plug: Also known as Type 2. It is the standard plug used in Australia on vehicles 2018 and beyond. Still compatible with type 1 infrastructure via an adapter.
NEV (Neighborhood Electric Vehicle): NEVs are small, low-speed electric cars. Think electric golf carts and vehicles of that template. NEVs are often affordable, fully electric and can be charged using a standard electrical outlet.
ISLANDff-Peak Charging: Charging an electric vehicle when demand is lower on the grid. Since it is a cheaper price, you should always try to do the bulk of your charging during these times.
PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles): Essentially a hybrid electric vehicle with the option of charging from an electric power source. Vehicles like the MINI Countryman Hybrid or the BMW 330e have this technology.
Quick-Charge connectors: The two connectors are available on DC fast chargers and have similar functionality but are slightly different. The original Type 1 connector, known as the CHAdeMO, has been replaced by the CCS2 combo connector. Adapters between the two are readily available and are often supplied by manufacturers.
RAnxiety: When you are worried about not getting to your destination based on the available battery charge. Most trip computers do a good job of minimizing this stress through warnings and recommendations.
RSelf-propelled braking: A smart technology that allows you to capture the energy from braking and put it back in a vehicle’s battery.
Ssustainability: Environmentally, it is to find an ecological balance in all our actions. For example, BMW will halve CO2 emissions per Vehicle and mileage driven in 2030 compared to the level in 2019, showing that luxury and sustainability can go hand in hand without compromise.
Torque: Technically, it is the torsional force that causes rotation. Gasoline engines deliver torque over a curve when revs increase, but electric motors deliver maximum torque from zero revs, which is one of the reasons why they can accelerate so fast.
Utility Rate: The rate at which a utility charges electricity. Usually divided by on-peak / off-peak rates, but new providers are getting more creative. Buy around, as charging your electric car will be your biggest expense after purchase.
V2G (Vehicle-to-grid): A system that enables electric vehicles to communicate with power grids by controlling the flow of current in both directions.
Worldwide Harmonized Light Vehicles Test Procedure (WLTP): More commonly in European circles, the test procedure analyzes the vehicle’s range, emissions, energy efficiency and all the juicy bits in between. It will probably not be mentioned down at the pub, but good to know for technical deep dives.
Ix BMW. Ok “X” is hard. But the new platform from BMW is impressive enough to hold up. Available in two variants, the iX will offer up to 620 km range and have the capacity to add 150 km range in just 10 minutes.
Year 2050: Yes, “Y” was also difficult. But the year 2050 is often used as a reference point for net zero emissions. The OECD predicts that the world’s population is expected to increase from 7 billion today to over 9 billion by 2050, so it will be crucial to get on top of emissions in the future. Electric transport will have a large hand game at this table.
WITHero Emission Vehicle (ZEV): A vehicle that does not emit unpleasant emissions. No carbon monoxide, soot, any of it.
This article is proudly presented in partnership with BMW Group. Thank you for supporting the brands who support Boss Hunting.