According to the study electric vehicles (EVs) are more carbon intensive to produce, but over the lifetime emit less. A Nissan Leaf is approximately 15 % more carbon intensive to produce compared to a similar fossil fuelled car. However, by 6 to 16 months (7 900 to 30 600 kilometres) the EVs are break even with traditional fossil fuelled vehicles, with average driving. The results are based on the current electricity grid mix for different parts of USA. For a high renewable electricity grid mix the break even time (and distance) would be shorter. If the US grid relied on renewable energy for 80 percent of its power supply, the emissions from EVs (including manufacturing emissions) would be 60 percent lower than those under the average US electricity grid mix today
Read the full report here.