10 must-read books on electric vehicles

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10 must-read books on electric vehicles

This list of 10 must-read books on electric vehicles will help you go through all this, and be in sync with car buyers and their concerns before you start building electric cars. Read more...
last updated
September 4, 2023

We recently ran a poll on LinkedIn about electric vehicle design, asking people about their top reason for buying an electric vehicle. Not surprisingly, 64% said they do so to save money on fuel. Another 27% cited environmental concerns, and 9% said it was because electric cars are safer than internal combustion engine (ICE) cars.

Taking a customer-centric approach to EV design requires you to understand the history of electric vehicles, the incremental technological advances over the years that have led to the mainstreaming of EVs, lithium-ion batteries, government regulations, the market for electric cars, and how to buy an electric vehicle. 

This list of 10 must-read books on electric vehicles will help you go through all this, and be in sync with car buyers and their concerns before you start building electric cars.

1. Electric Cars, by James Taylor

This book explores the history, development, and future of electric cars. The book begins by discussing the earliest electric cars and how they were developed in the 19th century. 

It then moves on to the decline of electric cars in the early 20th century, as gasoline-powered cars became more popular.

The book also covers the recent resurgence of electric cars, particularly in the past decade, as concerns about climate change and energy security have become more pressing. 

It discusses the various technological advances that have made electric cars more practical and efficient, including improvements in battery technology, charging infrastructure, and motor design.

In addition to the technological aspects of electric cars, the book also examines the economic and political factors that have influenced their development and adoption.

It looks at the role of government policies, such as tax incentives and emissions standards, in promoting the use of electric cars, as well as the market forces that are driving the growth of the electric car industry.

2. Forward Drive – The Race to Build ′Clean′ cars for the Future, By Jim Motavalli

Forward Drive is about the race to build the cars of the future - with the intent to find solutions to the challenges caused by the widespread usage of ICE cars.

3. Age of Auto Electric: Environment, Energy, and the Quest for the Sustainable Car (Transformations: Studies in the History of Science and Technology), by Matthew N. Eisler

This book is a scholarly work that explores the history and current state of electric cars and their potential to create a more sustainable future for transportation.

The book is part of the "Transformations: Studies in the History of Science and Technology" series and is published by the MIT Press. It was first published in 2018 and has 256 pages.

Eisler's central argument is that the shift towards electric cars is not simply a technological change, but a cultural, economic, and political transformation that requires a rethinking of our relationships to energy, the environment, and mobility. 

He traces the history of electric cars from their early development in the late 19th century to the present day, exploring the technological, social, and political factors that have shaped their development and adoption.

A key theme in this book is the idea of the "sustainable car," which Eisler defines as a vehicle that is not only environmentally friendly but also economically and socially sustainable. 

He argues that electric cars have the potential to be sustainable cars, but this requires a comprehensive approach that goes beyond simply replacing gasoline engines with electric motors.

4. Long Hard Road: The Lithium-Ion Battery and the Electric Car, by Charles J. Murray

This book explores the history and development of the lithium-ion battery and its relationship with the electric car industry.

The book traces the evolution of the lithium-ion battery from its inception in the 1970s to its current dominant position as the preferred battery technology for electric cars.


Murray examines the technical challenges involved in designing and producing a battery that can provide the power and range required for an electric car, as well as the economic and political factors that have influenced the development of the electric car industry.

Throughout the book, Murray interviews engineers, scientists, and executives involved in the electric car and battery industries, providing readers with an inside look at the challenges and opportunities facing these industries. 

He also discusses the role of government policy in shaping the development of the electric car industry and the challenges that must be overcome to make electric cars a viable and sustainable transportation option.

5. Complete Guide to Buying an Electric Car and Maintenance for Beginners, by Owen G. Steven

This guide will provide you with everything you need to know to make an informed decision about buying an electric car and keeping it running smoothly.

Part 1: Buying an Electric Car

  1. Before you start shopping for an electric car, you need to understand your driving habits and needs. 
  2. Research available models.
  3. Take a test drive.
  4. Consider charging options.
  5. Check for Incentives.

Part 2: Maintaining Your Electric Car

Follow Manufacturer Guidelines:

  1. Follow the manufacturer's guidelines.
  2. Charge your car regularly.
  3. Keep the battery cool.
  4. Check tire pressure.
  5. Use regenerative braking.

Conclusion: By understanding your needs, researching available models, and following manufacturer guidelines for maintenance, you can keep your electric car running smoothly for years to come.


Benefits on using automobile electric car to reduce cost of bill and environmental maintenance by Evans D. Armstrong

Electric cars have become increasingly popular due to their numerous benefits, including lower fuel costs and reduced environmental impact. 

This book provides an ultimate guide to buying an electric car and maintenance.

Armstrong also provides the same guidelines about your driving needs, choosing the right model, tax incentives, charging options, test drives, and proper maintenance of an electric car including the battery, regenerative braking, tire maintenance, cooling system maintenance, and your driving habits.

7. Electric Cars For Dummies, by Brian Culp

"Electric Cars For Dummies" by Brian Calp is a book that provides an introduction to electric vehicles and how they work. 

The book covers various topics, such as the benefits of owning an electric car, how to choose the right electric car for your needs, how to charge your electric car, and how to maintain it. 

The author also discusses the environmental benefits of electric cars and how they can help reduce carbon emissions.

Additionally, the book provides information on the different types of electric cars, including plug-in hybrids, battery-electric vehicles, and fuel cell vehicles. The author explains how each type of electric car works, their advantages and disadvantages, and how to determine which type of electric car is right for you.


The Ultimate Beginners Electric Car User Manual For Optimum Performance, Functionality, Dashboard Icons, Maintenance, And Operational Modes Explained, by TOM SCOTT

This easy-to-use operational guide provides you with basic information on how to operate your electric car:

  1. Starting the car.
  2. Driving the car. 
  3. Charging the car.
  4. Monitoring the car.

Also explains the key dashboard icons you may encounter while driving your electric car.

  1. Battery level indicator.
  2. Range indicator.
  3. Charging status indicator.

The author also looks at the maintenance aspects of electric cars.

9. Guide To Using Electric Cars: Find The Right EV For You, by Scott McAllister

For those who are new to the world of electric cars, it can be daunting to know where to start. 

This book provides you with the information you need to choose the right electric vehicle (EV) for you, and give you some tips on how to use and maintain it.

Determine your needs, research EV options, and understand charging options. 

10. How To Buy An Affordable Electric Car: A Tightwad's Guide to EV Ownership, by Matt DeLorenzo

This book offers practical advice on how to buy an electric car on a budget. Here are some tips from the book:

  1. Buy used.
  2. Lease.
  3. Look for deals.
  4. Consider a shorter range.
  5. Research tax incentives.
  6. Charge at home.
  7. Plan your trips.
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