Top Jargons Used For Electric Driving: The Complete Guide For The UK

EV Jargon

Electric Cars: The Basics

For those of you new to zero-emission electric driving, we recommend a read of the following articles:

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Jargon Busting!

We at e-zoomed understand that for many of you new to the world of electric vehicles (EVs), the terminology can be daunting. We have therefore put togethers a top 20 list of jargons used in the fast evolving electric driving sector.

EV Glossary:
AFVs (Alternatively- Fuelled Vehicles):What is an alternatively-fuelled vehicle? An alternatively-fuelled vehicle, is any vehicle powered by an alternative fuel to traditional petrol or diesel internal combustion engines. AFVs use a multitude of fuel sources from batteries to hydrogen, but also include solar, biodiesel and liquid natural gas. The Jaguar I-PACE, is an example of an AFV, as it is powered by an onboard rechargeable EV battery and does not use any petrol or diesel fuel.  
AC/DC (Alternating Current/ Direct Current):What is AC/ DC current? AC and DC describe the type of ‘current flow’ in a circuit. Put simply, most household appliances, like the kettle, toaster and television, use AC, while the batteries used for remotes, flashlights etc use DC. In fact, all power supplied by the grid to a dwelling or building is AC power. Therefore, an electric car charging at home will use AC power. AC is a form of current invented by Nicholas Tesla that reverses its direction of movement constantly back and forth within the circuit, by changing its magnitude and polarity (between positive and negative), at regular intervals. Such current can easily be transformed from higher voltage to lower voltage. The primary difference between AC and DC is that, DC flows only in one direction. 
BEV (Battery-Electric Vehicle):What is a battery-electric vehicle? Also referred to as a ‘pure electric car’, ‘only-electric vehicle’, ‘all-electric vehicle’, ‘fully-electric car’, ‘100% electric car’, is an electric vehicle (EV) that does not have an an internal combustion engine (ICE), fuel tank or exhaust pipe. Yes, you read it correctly. These environmentally-friendly electric vehicles produce zero tailpipe emissions, and run only on a rechargeable onboard EV battery, coupled with a fully-electric drivetrain (electric motor). The onboard EV battery is charged via an external outlet, usually via a dedicated EV charging station. For home electric car charging, an example of an EV charger is the myenergi zappi smart EV charger. The all-electric Mercedes-Benz EQS SUV and the best-selling Tesla Model 3 are good examples of a BEV. Bottom-line, walk around the BEV, if you cannot see an exhaust pipe it is a pure electric car!  Some BEVs can achieve a range over 400 miles on a single charge, however, most BEVs have a range capability between 200 and 300 miles. 
DoD (Depth-Of-Charge):What is Depth-Of-Charge? A battery’s Depth-of-Charge is the level of discharge of a battery. As you drive an EV, the battery is discharged. The DoD indicates the % that has been discharged relative to the capacity of a battery. Conversely, a State-of-Charge (SOC), is the percentage of capacity still available in a battery. If you use 25% of your EV battery capacity, then the DoD is 25% and the SOC is 75%. It is recommended not to fully discharge an electric car battery, as this reduces the lifespan of a battery. Automotive manufacturers publish recommend DoD levels for charging, but a charging range between 20% to 80% is ideal.
EV Battery Life: What is the life of an EV battery? Like petrol and diesel engines, electric car batteries also have a finite lifespan. Though EV battery technology has come a long way over the past few years, battery degradation is inevitable. Just as normal wear and tear is the case for an internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle. Currently most EV manufacturers are offering a warranty up to 8 years or 100,000 miles. However, some automotive manufacturers are offering an even longer EV battery warranty. An example is the Japanese automotive manufacturer, Toyota. The company offers a 10 years EV battery warranty for the all-electric Toyota bZ4X SUV. In most cases, such warranties are up to 70% of the original EV battery capacity. The battery life is impacted by a number of factors, which in turn impacts battery electrical performance, to include, the range the electric car can travel. The most commonly used batteries in electric cars are lithium-ion batteries. 
Earthed/ Grounded:Users of electrical equipment are protected from electric shocks through a process called earthing. If there is a fault in the electric system, a user can be subject to an electric shock, as the electricity uses part of the body to travel. Earthing protects the user by proving a path for the fault current to reach the earth. As an example, the commonplace household 3-plug pin, has one wire that connects to the earth. Earthing also protects the electrical apparatus from voltage surges etc. 
EV (Electric Vehicle) :What is an electric vehicle? An EV is any vehicle that uses ‘electricity’ or an ‘electric motor’ to power the vehicle. An EV is usually referred to any vehicle that is primarily powered by an electric motor. The electric motor derives its power from a rechargeable onboard EV battery. In other words,  EVs are less dependent on petrol or diesel as fuel, and in the case of pure electric cars (BEVs), not dependent at all.  EVs encompasses all types of electric vehicles, to include: battery-electric vehicles (BEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), extended-range electric vehicles (E-REVs) and fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs).  
E-REVs (Extended-Range Electric Vehicles):What is an E-REV? Extended-range electric vehicles fit in-between a 100% pure electric car (BEV) and a plug-in hybrid (PHEV). An E-REV is closer to a BEV, in the manner in which the wheels are powered. In an E-REV, the wheels are always powered by an onboard battery pack and electric motor. An E-REV has a small internal combustion engine, which is used only to recharge the onboard battery when depleted. So bottom-line, an E-REV helps reduce range anxiety. E-REVs are capable of up to 125 miles on pure electric driving and usually emit emissions of less than 20g/km. However, as the range of BEVs continue to improve significantly, the added range benefit of E-REVs will become redundant. The BMWi3 range extender is a good example of an E-REV.
FCEVs (Fuel Cell Electric Vehicles):What is a FCEV? Fuel cell electric vehicles, also known as hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, is a type of EV. These vehicle use hydrogen to produce electricity, and do not require to be recharged (like BEVs). As long as there is hydrogen filled in the vehicle, electricity will be produced to power the vehicle. An FCEV is classed as an ultra-low emission vehicle (ULEV), as the vehicle has zero-tailpipe emissions. The only discharge from the tailpipe is water vapour. FCEVs have a small onboard battery. Hydrogen is a chemical element and mostly bonded with other other elements. For example H2O (water). The fuel cells in an FCEV convert chemical energy into electrical energy. The Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell vehicle is an example of a FCEV.  
Frunk:What is a frunk? Though a frunk is not a new term, its availability is becoming more widespread with the development of electric vehicles (EVs). A frunk is a storage space/ compartment/ trunk in the front of a vehicle, rather than the rear. In the case of pure electric cars, given that these vehicles do not have an onboard internal combustion engine (ICE), there is space for a frunk. It is worth noting that a frunk is usually much smaller than a trunk, and in EVs, a good space for storing the EV cable.
HEVs (Hybrid Electric Vehicles):What is a HEV? Whether you know it or not, you have at sometime time sat in a hybrid electric vehicle. If you have ever used Uber, chances are your transport was the ubiquitous Toyota Prius, which is a leading example of an HEV. HEVs, also sometime referred to as conventional hybrids or tradition hybrids, are lower-emission vehicles that combine a traditional internal combustion engine (ICE), with a small onboard electric battery. The vehicle uses regenerative braking to capture kinetic energy, resulting in an increased economy and reduced emissions. 
ICE (Internal Combustion Engine):An ICE is an engine, that uses fuels, like petrol or diesel, along with air, to produce combustion. The process of combustion or ‘burning’ within the engine combustion chamber, releases energy that is used to create motion. The expanding hot gases cause movement by engaging with pistons and rotors. ICE is seen in all forms of transportation, to include, road transportation. Internal combustion engine vehicles emit tailpipe pollution, and the sale of new ICE cars, will be banned from UK roads from 2030 onwards. 
Mild Hybrid Electric Vehicles (MHEVs):What is a MHEV? Mild hybrids use both an internal combustion engine (ICE) and an electric motor. These cars are also known as ‘self-charging hybrids’. The vehicle uses regenerative braking (recuperated electric energy) to improve the fuel efficiency and to reduce tailpipe emissions (CO2 g/km). However, mild hybrids cannot be charged by an external power source, like an EV charger. 
NEDC Range:Designed in the 1980s, the New European Driving Cycle was introduced to measure fuel economy and emissions in passenger cars. However, the NEDC has been criticised for reporting unrealistic figures, compiled via unrealistic conditions in a laboratory setting. Data released through such tests include, urban fuel economy, extra-urban fuel economy, overall fuel economy and CO2 emissions.
One-Pedal Driving:What is one-pedal driving? In one-pedal driving, the EV slows down or stops, when the pedal is released. One-pedal functionality reduce the need to use the brake pedal, for speed reduction or stopping. Of course, the brake pedal is still the best way to hold a vehicle in place at a complete stop.
PiCG (Plug-In Car Grant):The PiCG a grant given by the UK government to encourage the uptake of low-emission vehicles in the UK, in particular, pure electric cars. A buyer of an eligible EV does not need to do anything, as the grant is adjusted against the purchase price of the new electric car. Not all low emission vehicles are eligible for a grant, and only those approved by the UK government are eligible.  
Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV):What is a PHEV? Like a MHEV, a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) aims to increase the fuel efficiency and reduce tailpipe emissions. However there is much difference between a PHEV and a MHEV. A PHEV has a more powerful electric motor and a larger onboard EV battery. In a PHEV, the electric motor and onboard EV battery are also used to propel the electric vehicle. Moreover, a PHEV battery is charged by using an external power source, like a dedicated EV charger.
Regenerative Braking:Driving at all times requires braking. However, on more densely populated roads, the frequency and intensity of braking increases. Yes, it does result in longer journeys, but also reduces the efficiency of the vehicle. Regenerative braking is process of capturing energy otherwise wasted during braking. According to the rules of physics, energy cannot be destroyed, instead it simply transfers from one state to another. The same principle applies to braking. The kinetic energy that propels a car forward is usually displaced or wasted as heat. Regenerative braking captures this kinetic energy that in turns recharges an on board battery, increasing both efficiency and range. Cars like Toyota Prius, Jaguar I-PACE and Tesla Model 3 use regenerative braking.  
Torque:Torque is a key factor in determining acceleration of a vehicle and is defined as the engines rotational speed. Torque is most commonly defined as the force required to twist an object. For example a wrench being used. The heavier a car, the more important is the role of torque i.e. the vehicle needs more rotational force to help it accelerate faster. 
ULEVs (Ultra-Low Emission Vehicles):An ultra-low emission vehicle, is any vehicle that emits less than 75g of CO2/km and is capable of operating with zero-tailpipe emissions for at least 10 miles. In general ULEVs release emissions that are at least 50% lower than petrol and diesel cars, if not significantly lower. ULEVs include all types of electric vehicles, to include, BEVs, PHEVs, E-REVs etc.
WLTP (Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure):In a bid to continue to improve the quality of realistic data released by automotive manufacturers, on economy, range and CO2 emissions, Europe has implemented its first phase for the WLTP program. The testing procedures under WLTP will result in reduced ranges for electric cars released under other previous testing regimes. The WLTP is seen as a significant improvement over the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) designed in the 1980s and based on theoretical driving. The WLTP has been developed with the aim of becoming a global standard, so that cars can be easily compared between regions.   
ZEVs (Zero-Emission Vehicles):A zero-emission vehicle is any vehicle that does not emit any harmful pollutants from the exhaust. Battery-electric vehicles, like the Tesla model X and S are examples of electric cars that are zero-emission. Of course, all petrol and diesel cars release significant health and environment damaging pollutants and are not zero emission vehicles.  Zero-emission vehicles also include other forms of road transportation to include electric vans, e-bikes, e-scooters etc. 

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Ashvin Suri

Ashvin has been involved with the renewables, energy efficiency and infrastructure sectors since 2006. He is passionate about the transition to a low-carbon economy and electric transportation. Ashvin commenced his career in 1994, working with US investment banks in New York. Post his MBA from the London Business School (1996-1998), he continued to work in investment banking at Flemings (London) and JPMorgan (London). His roles included corporate finance advisory, M&A and capital raising. He has been involved across diverse industry sectors, to include engineering, aerospace, oil & gas, airports and automotive across Asia and Europe. In 2010, he co-founded a solar development platform, for large scale ground and roof solar projects to include, the UK, Italy, Germany and France. He has also advised on various renewable energy (wind and solar) utility scale projects working with global institutional investors and independent power producers (IPP’s) in the renewable energy sector. He has also advised in key international markets like India, to include advising large-scale industrial and automotive group in India. Ashvin has also advised Indian Energy, an IPP backed by Guggenheim (a US$ 165 billion fund). He has also advised a US$ 2 billion, Singapore based group. Ashvin has also worked in the real estate and infrastructure sector, to including working with the Matrix Group (a US$ 4 billion property group in the UK) to launch one of the first few institutional real estate funds for the Indian real estate market. The fund was successfully launched with significant institutional support from the UK/ European markets. He has also advised on water infrastructure, to include advising a Swedish clean technology company in the water sector. He has also been involved with a number of early stage ventures.

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