The EV-Hater's Guide to Hating Electric Cars

By · August 11, 2011

Electric vehicles are a sales flop and a dismal failure. Or so I was told this week—and last week and the week before—by respected newspapers.

The “sales flop” part surprised me, since I am one of thousands of people waiting in line to buy my electric vehicle. I made my reservation for the car in April 2010, and am hoping for delivery by April 2012. If a car has a two-year wait list, is it a sales flop? Nevermind.

The latest article’s author, like the others, conveniently left out the part about the long waiting list. And he left out a few other things as well. Maybe these folks are just too busy to check their facts. Or, maybe something else is going on.

Electric Citicars

To a true EV-hater, the image of an electric car will always be the small, underpowered battery-powered vehicles from the 1970s. Preferably, the EV will be depicted on a flatbed truck, getting towed after running out of electricity.

Whatever the reason, the media often has an irrational disdain for electric vehicles (EVs). And a similar disdain is common among the general population too. The same EV-hating arguments are repeated ad nauseum in the media. After analyzing the key arguments of the EV haters, I have compiled what I believe is the first-ever EV-Hater's Guide to Hating Electric Cars. If you really hate EVs—and you know who you are—then this Top 10 guide is especially for you.

First, commit these truthy facts to memory:

1. EVs are totally overpriced.

Point to the $109,000 Tesla Roadster supercar as your only example. If you’re forced to compare prices with a Nissan LEAF—in the mid- to high-20s after tax breaks—then perform a lengthy comparative cost analysis contrasting the LEAF to a $12,000 gasoline car to prove that the EV is more expensive.

2. Plugging them in will crash the grid.

Forget that most electric car charging will occur during off-peak times. And forget that the EV charger on the Nissan LEAF draws a modest 3.3 kilowatts. Just for fun, make the grid-crashing claim while your 4.4-kilowatt clothes dryer is running.

3. EVs are worse for the environment than a gasoline car.
It’s not true, but if you say that often enough, people will believe it. Then roll your eyes and point out that producing electricity for an EV emits pollution too. And what about those batteries? Imply that they’re made out of poison that will pile up in our landfills. Depending on who your audience is, you might also mention that carbon dioxide is a fictional gas invented by the liberal elite.

4. EVs are just a status symbol for eco-snobs.
Remember, the EV is always a symbol for something that you hate. It's not a car.

5. EVs are a sales flop.
Never mention the huge unmet demand and the production bottleneck. Never mention the long waiting lists. Small sales numbers in the first few months of introduction prove that no one wants to buy one. Period.

6. Shout it: Limited range!
This is the one gripe about electric cars that is actually true, so get all the mileage out of it you can. Associate limited range with the word “anxiety.” Say it again: “Anxiety.” See how delightfully negative that word makes you feel. And if an EV-lover mentions that gasoline cars can run out of fuel too, just look at them like they’re crazy, and then change the subject.

Golf Carts

It doesn't matter how much electric horsepower the latest electric cars offer, ALL EVs are golf carts.

Now, swear (on a stack of Hummer owner manuals) that you’ll never talk about these things:

7. NEVER mention fuel costs.
Just don’t go there. A typical gasoline car will burn about $20,000 worth of gasoline over it’s 128,500 mile lifetime, while an EV will run the same distance for less than $4,000 of electricity. If people start mentally adding that extra $16,000 to the cost of their gasoline car, it’s game over.

8. Never mention timing belts.
I just spent $1,500 getting one replaced in my gasoline car. Of course, an EV owner will never have to do that. Similarly, oil changes and other costly maintenance are a non-issue with an EV. Keep that quiet, okay?

9. Never mention the luxury ride quality.
People spend tens of thousands of dollars extra for gasoline cars that have a smooth and quiet ride. An even smoother and quieter ride is standard with an EV. Avoid mentioning that, and remember to mutter something about golf carts.

10. Never mention the future.
The cost of an EV will go down by thousands in the years ahead as production costs fall—especially the cost of the battery. Along with the cheaper price will come longer range, faster recharging, more choice, better performance, and other improvements. EVs are price-competitive already. In a few years, EVs will be a distinctly better value than gasoline cars. Shhh. Just keep saying that they’re too expensive.

There you have it, EV haters. Please don’t bother to take an electric car out for a spin to see for yourself, or to ask an EV owner about the real-world experience of driving an electric car.

Add more reasons why EVs suck in the comments below. And spread the word.

Comments

· · 2 years ago

You can't use an EV to commit suicide by leaving it "running" in an enclosed space such as a garage. A blow to the "right to die" crowd.

· urbeecar (not verified) · 2 years ago

If EVs and their designers are not cautious then sadly they will only end up trading one evil for another. The trade would only be in "what's" consumed. We should be thinking of "how much" is consumed. EVs are an opportunity for all of us (industry and consumers) to approach the notion of the car from a different perspective. EVs can be a valid choice as a means of getting us from point a to b comfortably and quickly. The idea of new meaning more power at your command well that's one habit that needs breaking. Real design, real innovation and a real leap forward is to use less energy with each new design ... and not more.

Best line from the article: EVs are not cars.

Dam Straight!

Regards,
urbeecar

· · 2 years ago

Thanks Steve! Enjoyable and fun piece to read.

You hit most of the anti-EV lines. One biggie you don't: the whole "EVs are subsidized" bit from the right-wing/Tea Party crowd. Shhhh -- never mention massive government subsidies/tax breaks to Big Oil, or the ways in which we all subsidize our "cheap" ICEs with something that's more precious than money (oohh, only a scary "socialist" would say something's more precious than money) -- our health!

· · 2 years ago

From Christof Demont's post,
"One biggie you don't: the whole "EVs are subsidized" bit from the right-wing/Tea Party crowd. "

I could not have given a better example of why EV-Haters exist. This is just plain an a-hole comment, and one of many I have seen on here.

Excuse me, but this is a public forum. People come on here, and see this garbage. Why wouldn't you want to encourage the "right wing/Tea Party crowd", as you put it, to get interested in and purchase EVs?

The public views EV-Lovers as arrogant, rude, inconsiderate, divisive, militant, and anti-social. It would take 10 large PR firms to clean up the public relations mess left by many EV Lovers, and their mouthing off.

This really isn't that complicated folks. If you try to ramrod things down people's throats, they are going to push back. If you call them an names, then that bad taste in their mouth is what they are going to associate with EVs.

Try listening to people, and see if an EV would fit their needs. If it does, suggest one to them. That's how you get things started, one person at a time. For gosh sakes, stop with the name calling and bashing. It's failing.

· · 2 years ago

@Michael: Wow, really hot under the collar aren't you? It's a basic fact that people with right-wing leanings are anti-subsidy and EVs are currently heavily subsidized.

Give me three realistic, specific constructive ways to get the anti-subsidy crowd to make a real, concerted, meaningful move toward EVs and I'll listen.

Don't see any specific suggestions in your diatribe in response to my post. Just glittering generalities.

And if people are spouting anti-EV hate, exactly how is "listening" going to succeed?

· · 2 years ago

@Christof Demont,
"It's a basic fact that people with right-wing leanings are anti-subsidy and EVs are currently heavily subsidized. "

You just don't get it do you? I gave you suggestions, but apparently, you just don't want to hear them. Here's another one. Do everyone a favor, and keep your "basic facts", which are basically just anti-this group, and anti-that group, to yourself. It's non-inclusive, and you're not helping the EV movement.

"And if people are spouting anti-EV hate, exactly how is "listening" going to succeed?"

Do you actually think your response of spouting your hate of half the people in this country is the way to go?

It's simple. You stop insulting people, and start introducing them to EVs. You "listen" to their concerns and address them (without ugly smears). Get them in the cars to drive them.

· · 2 years ago

Steve, your pictures and captions are priceless! :-)

Here's a video of an electric "golf cart" that does the quarter in the 7's.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2_ukLgsGEzs

· Callum (not verified) · 2 years ago

EVs are a gift to the criminal fraternity because you can leave one "running" outside the bank while it is being robbed and no-one will realise it is the getaway vehicle.

· from Belgium (Europe) (not verified) · 2 years ago

Priceless indeed !! I love this !
Just like digital photography took over on films, whatever previous photographers said about resolution, price, etc ... or like plasma , then lcd, then led displays took over CRTs, these EVs will blow away any other vehicule technologies in a matter of years.

Currently targetted at early birds, whatever their motivation (distinction, technoaddiction, ecology, ...) these EVs will very quickly address the largest population and price will drop significantly while performance will double every year.

Ask yourself - whould you serioulsy go out today and buy a film camera, or a CRT tv. ?You won't find one except in specific stores, no films avaiable, no maintenance possible anymore. In a decade or so, that'll be 'exclusively' reserved for wealthy collectionners , for the best of all others.

· Alexandre Moleiro (not verified) · 2 years ago

There's another one:
EV's are dangerous because they are silent and we will miss the noise!
Many pedestrians will be hit!
How about car racing without engine noise? That will kill the sport!

Just don't mention high-end cars like Mercedes S or RollsRoyce that are near-silent or even... bicycles!!

· hottspring (not verified) · 2 years ago

am pretty impressed by this car. my ideal kind of car. I do sell gas but when I realized where the origin of such gas my conscience pricks me. Just imagine such hostile regimes that wont hesitate to finish us and yet we are bankrolling them.
once I get this car I will use my influence for others to get it (pay for advert) if necessary. once people buy and they will I will convert my gas station to EV fast charging station (no loss of income) improvement of environment including noise pollution.
yes I can
yes u can
and yes we can

· Greg (not verified) · 2 years ago

Another one you missed - EVs are slow. They will make you late for appointments. You'll slow down other drivers on the freeway and cause accidents. Just make sure that you don't mention this around the same time you mention the Tesla Roadster.

· Michael Thwaite (not verified) · 2 years ago

Brillant list! Love it!

Add to point 9 though: "Don't forget that silent EVs are killing innocent deaf people and children." - good to get children in, and make sure to change the subject when evidence is called for; that'll just get you into a protracted debate about how luxury car brands have been striving for this for years, remember "Electric cars are dangerously quiet and you'll be ok.

· · 2 years ago

@Micheal -- Love it. You accuse me of being arrogant and condesending and then your entire response to me is steeped in a tone of arrogance --> "You just don't get it!"

Obviously, "I just don't get IT" because I'm just too dense and stupid, "righteous," etc. but mostly because I don't thoroughly adhere to your "superior" "middle of the road" point of view (ah, the dominant ideology of centrism), which is so obviously "superior" to mine.

I'm not opposed to reaching out -- though clearly this column isn't written in the spirit of reaching across the aisle and bringing in anti-EVers into the fold. As you yourself note, sarcasm usually doesn't succeed in doing that.

I would suggest to you that while some EV skeptics are persuadable, there are large numbers who are so thoroughly anti-EV that they will never be convinced. I personally believe that listening to them in the belief that you're going to convince them to switch their views on EVs is an exercise in complete and total futility.

· Ross Abbey (not verified) · 2 years ago

11. Those batteries are bound to fail.

Question aloud whether or not EV batteries undergo safety testing, then chuckle about "the next time one of those things drives into a lake." As if the OEMs and national labs haven't done years of testing, and without noting the thousands of grizzly accidents that have been caused or exacerbated by gasoline drive trains.
(If you don't live near one or more bodies of water, go to your fall-back line: "Ever see that YouTube video where this poor guy's laptop explodes into flames?")

Point out that cellphone batteries loose charge capacity over the years. "What are you gonna do then, pay for a new battery?" Or better yet, imply that battery replacement isn't even an option: "That car's not gonna be worth much if nobody can drive it." Include other hidden-but-questionable assumptions (i.e., battery capacity could actually degrade to zero), but insist that EV advocates back up each and every assertion with published data. As if data would change your mind.

· Blazin' Raven (not verified) · 2 years ago

Sometimes tongue-in-cheek insults are used in a loving way on family members to cajole them into thinking more deeply about what they are doing out of habit. To regard such language as fighting words is a bit over the top. Yes, social labels tend to alienate, and humor relies on labels to make its point, and if someone wishes to take issue with the process they may miss the content.

Here's another downside of EVs: the technology is so disruptive that the car makers that are too big to fail will suffer horribly as they struggle to catch up with the inventions being created at the fringe, or attempt to stamp them out. Workers will be sent home, more homes will be lost, and rioters will sweep through retail malls, burning and looting. Don't mention the green jobs sector making wind turbines, solar panels, urban gardens, car-sharing services, or even -- G help us -- manufacturing EV's!

· · 2 years ago

One to be added (specially here in Canada): EV's were not made for cold climates. Make sure you emphasize the last time your current car didn't start in the morning because it was -25C outside. Never mention EV batteries, differently than your current car battery, are always kept warm in the winter. And never mention you can also program your EV to pre-heat the cabin before you leave in the morning, instead of freezing to death while waiting for your engine to warm up.

· Anonymous (not verified) · 2 years ago

@Michael -

Hey wait, I'm an EV lover, and I definitely NOT divisive!

· · 2 years ago

This list needs some reference to laptop batteries catching on fire, and a suggestion that EVs will do the same. Posting the youtube video of the laptop shooting out sparks and in flames will also help.

· · 2 years ago

Don't forget that you'll run out of charge if you get stuck in a traffic jam.

· · 2 years ago

@Christof Demont,
"I would suggest to you that while some EV skeptics are persuadable, there are large numbers who are so thoroughly anti-EV that they will never be convinced. I personally believe that listening to them in the belief that you're going to convince them to switch their views on EVs is an exercise in complete and total futility."

No one thought people could change the bad image of motorcycles and motorcycle riders until Honda came along either. They quickly became the largest motorcycle manufacturer in the world.

With your brand of name calling and divisiveness, instead of one EV-Hater, you end up with ten.

· · 2 years ago

@Anonymous,
"Hey wait, I'm an EV lover, and I definitely NOT divisive!"

Great! The world needs more of you.

· Don (not verified) · 2 years ago

Duh,aren't corn, cotton, rice, electricity, GE, government waste, government multiplication of effort, the poor, the middle class that doesn't pay income taxes, Senator's retirement funds, franking, Representatives retirement funds, banks, toilets, Amtrak also subsidized?

Big DUH from Dixie!

Put in an Aptera dealership down heyah!

· Don (not verified) · 2 years ago

Maybe that squid George Soros hasn't bought enough GM stock....

· · 2 years ago

@Brad Once I heard this from a friend who rides a motorcycle. He asked me if I wasn't afraid of those batteries catching fire. That was particularly ironic coming from a guy who rides a gas tank between his legs! :)

· vfx (not verified) · 2 years ago

#10 should include more charging infrastructure will come online.

... Just found two new spots near my house that were not there 6 months ago.

· · 2 years ago

#1x Safety personnel are in danger of massive electrocution in the event of an accident.

Make sure you fully forget about combustible gasoline, hot engines/exhaust, flammable brake fluid, boiling hot radiator mixes, possible steam burns. Also stubbornly refuse to believe that something like a "circuit breaker" exists, and get 100% written proof that there have been no deaths or injuries of rescue personnel responding to a wreck involving a hybrid car.

· · 2 years ago

Nice rant Steve. Here are some other lame arguments to put in the queue:

EV's will burn your house down.

The battery materials come from hostile countries like Bolivia and Australia.

You will die in a blizzard. Just ask Tom M. He died last year. And he is such a dedicated EV nut, he still drives his glorified golf cart from beyond the grave.

· · 2 years ago

@Michael -- I think you oversimplify things and fail to acknowledge that there are people across the continuum and political spectrum in terms of EV haters, including lefty EV haters. At the very least, I have a shot with them. I do not consider myself to be divisive, just realistic in terms of the political lay of the land when it comes to EVs, which I've invested 1,000s of hours into promoting on my web site SolarChargedDriving. Of course, my real reason for promoting EVs isn't EVs themselves, but what they can do to promote renewable energy and a cleaner, greener world -- if we power them with renewables.

· · 2 years ago

You would think that a majority of the tea party crowd would actually embrace EV/PV. Originally the tea party was composed of predominately Libertarians. Libertarians tend to have a strong self-sufficiency ethic. Owning an EV, and making your own electric "fuel" on your roof with your PV array, would seem to be something a Libertarian would readily adopt.

· · 2 years ago

@indyflick,
"You would think that a majority of the tea party crowd would actually embrace EV/PV. Originally the tea party was composed of predominately Libertarians. Libertarians tend to have a strong self-sufficiency ethic. Owning an EV, and making your own electric "fuel" on your roof with your PV array, would seem to be something a Libertarian would readily adopt."

Exactly, indyflick. You know why they haven't been enbraced by the Tea Party? Because people like Christof have been too busy bashing them, rather than selling the idea to them. People need to be introduced to EVs. The public really doesn't know anything about them. Tea Party people could be one of the biggest buyers of EVs. Think about it. There's no gas tax, and as you mentioned, with a PV array (which Ford is going to offer for only $10K less additional incentives), no electricity taxes either. Add to that, you would be out from the government's public utilitity commission's thumb with constant rate increases, and it's a no brainer.

Take some EVs with signs in the windows saying "This Car Pays NO Gas or Utility TAX" out to the next Tea Party rally, and see what happens. Just be prepared for a lot of questions, and have some simple answers with the easiest path on how they can get an EV and a PV array.

· · 2 years ago

@Christof Demont,
" I think you oversimplify things and fail to acknowledge that there are people across the continuum and political spectrum in terms of EV haters, including lefty EV haters. At the very least, I have a shot with them. I do not consider myself to be divisive, just realistic in terms of the political lay of the land when it comes to EVs, which I've invested 1,000s of hours into promoting on my web site SolarChargedDriving"

My jaw just hit the floor. Your idea of promoting renewable energy driving is to bash groups of people?

I'm doing anything but oversimplifying things. You can't use the same sales pitch to all people. People are different, and different things resonate with them. For instance, you can't give the same talk on EVs at a Sierra Club meeting as you would with fleet buyers at a Chamber of Commerce luncheon. That's why you have to "listen" and learn what's important to them, so you can develop a sales strategy.

· verde (not verified) · 2 years ago

Why the Tea Party should embrace the EV

1. No foreign oil - driving an EV means you are not sending your money to countries that don't like the USA and try and kill us by sponsoring terrorism.

2. Buy American - support local jobs and manufacturing in the USA by buying a GM or Tesla EV which today are both "built in the USA" and create new high tech jobs here at home.

3. Don't trust the Government - when the next big, earthquake/flood/tornado/riot/armageddon comes, your EV coupled with your Solar panels will ensure you and your family will be mobile while everyone else waits for FEMA to send in the gas, food, and water that will never come.

· · 2 years ago

I am Libertarian (albeit green leaning, contradiction? I don't think so) and I will be getting my Leaf this month (hopefully).

As a free-market purist, my thoughts are: if you think gas is too expensive, don't buy it!

I am anti *all* government subsidies. Given the limited supplies, electric cars would sell out with or without the subsidies. Personally, I would buy the Leaf either way. Tesla buyers certainly aren't relying on the subsidy.

The government wastes our money on tons of subsidies and other things I don't want or care for (like military spending past defense only, welfare, and medicare). You're damn right I will take the subsidy for the thing I do care for.

· · 2 years ago

So, if there are no government expenditures, Jose, there won't be any tax money to pave roads to drive your EV on. We'll, I guess that isn't exactly true. There will be private toll roads monitored by roving bands of redneck vigilantes in pickup trucks (with the emission controls disabled, of course,) armed with Uzis and AK-47s (now that guns laws no longer exist.)

Trouble is, some of these goons may not be very accommodating to . . . uh . . . guys named Jose, who happen to be driving environmentally-responsible cars with botanically-inspired names. I'm sure you'll have a great time chatting with them about laissez-faire economic models, while they riffle through your ID papers.

Well, for a moment, let's assume they let you live. Just don't be surprised if they make you take a hundred mile detour on someone else's private road. My guess is there won't be very many DC quick charge terminals connected to the grid along the way, though.

Wait . . . the grid? Isn't that socialized electricity? Well, THAT certainly has to go, too!

Getting back to those armed toll road cretins . . . what to do? Call the police? Oh, that's right. The police don't exist any longer . . . another "unnecessary" government subsidy. The U.S. Department of Justice? Ha! They were among the first to get their pink slips from the Koch brothers!

Pure Libertarianism might look good to some in the abstract. But it plays out a bit differently in the real world. Here's a clever little parody of what we'll probably end up with . . .

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7QDv4sYwjO0

Be careful what you wish for, Jose. Parts of Arizona already look like this. But, hey, our taxes are oh so low . . .

· · 2 years ago

@Jose G, "As a free-market purist..." "I am anti *all* government subsidies." "You're damn right I will take the subsidy"

You didn't actually need to declare you're a Libertarian, your hypocrisy in this matter would have been sufficient.

· · 2 years ago

@Michael -- I am quite aware of different audiences and writing to them, though of course, when you've got multiple audiences with competing views (a virtual certainly online), it becomes impossible to make an argument of substance that will satisfy all of them. In fact, I'm of the opinion that comment streams are largely ineffective places for a lot of things, including, persuasion, though that depends on the online context: Take a look at any comment stream on a YouTube video or below a Yahoo Associated Press story, and you see pretty quickly 99% of what's going on isn't about persuasion, but about establishing the supposed "superiorty" of one's views (which, by the way, both of us are trying to do here).

As for Tea Party folks and EV + PV, the independence angle is clearly a draw, but the subsidy part of the equation clearly isn't, as both EV and PV are heavily subsidized, and, allegedly ,Tea Party purists are against any type of subsidy for anything or anyone, including, presumably for themselves.

I personally find many extreme Tea Party-like views dangerous to the well being of the United States and to humanity in general. Does that mean I should bash them online by using labels? Maybe not -- and I appreciate being called out on that. That said, I will do everything in my power to fight against people who actively work to undermine EV and/or PV and government support for them -- the whole "Government Motors" anti-Volt spiel crowd.

I know you say, 'Welcome these folks." I say, once again, perhaps a few will take up a welcome, but I'm convinced most will not -- at least not until government subsidies of EVs and PV are a thing of the past.

Finally, I play up all angles on EV + PV on my web site SolarChargedDrivingCom, including fueling independence, and for what it's worth, the fueling independence angle of EV+ PV has grown on me in the two years I've done the site. But environmentalism is still my original inspiration. In fact, without it, I never would have started a web site devoted to EV + PV.

· Max Reid (not verified) · 2 years ago

This is what the media told about Hybrids when Insight & Prius were there.

You see now, Prius alone has sold 2 million units worldwide and Toyota has sold more than 3 million and there are 30 models now. Ofcourse Ford & Hyundai were joining in a big way. More EVs / Plugins are coming while the gasolene cars are slowly going out.

· ddavids1 (not verified) · 2 years ago

Bottom line....there's no such thing as "bad publicity" Bring it on! This generates conversation and gets the public thinking-considering the alternatives.

· · 2 years ago

(Sorry, I forgot to login, so this may be duplicate post)

No one who knows me would ever call me right wing in my political views, and I bash libertarianism and tea-bagger idiocy every chance I get.

HOWEVER, coal instead of oil to supply transport is stupid. Government subsidy of coal is as stupid as government subsidy of oil. So while many of OP's lines are funny and true, the message is diluted by poor fact finding. Irony

· · 2 years ago

@SageBrush,
While coal instead of oil to supply transport may be stupid, it is still the best option we have today - we should strongly embrace it.
We should, of course, push hard to replace coal with sustainable and clean renewables.
I agree that this shouldn't be done with government subsidies as well.
I request that you and others not use this forum for bashing anyone that supports Plug-Ins, even if you may not agree with them regarding other issues.
I'll try to refrain from bashing your socialist, left-wing idiocy as well and just stick to the subject at hand too.

· joe8120 (not verified) · 2 years ago

While I read the comments on most of these posts, I don't normally enter any comments. However, I felt the need to comment on this article. I suppose I fall into the more conservative side of politics and I am a registered Republican. However, I don't think these labels should apply to the current discussion on EV (although unfortunately they do). I have spoken to many of the same "stripe" and they have similar opinions. The fact is that we need to move away from our "addiction to oil" if I can use Bush's term, because it makes economic sense and will mean more security for our country in the long term. I don't see anything but positive outcomes from the transition to plug-in and pure electric vehicles and sometimes government has role to play in providing incentives to jump-start or assist in the adoption of such technologies for the good of our country. I suppose a purist would object to any intervention by government but I guess I don't agree totally with this belief.

I know there are many folks who believe as I do and happen to fall on the conservative side of the spectrum if you will. Unfortunately, those who are the loudest (on either side) often get the most press or attention. My only current regret is that my son, who attends UCLA and is doing research there this summer, was able to drive my sister's Leaf before I did. He said it was amazing. Quick acceleration, totally quiet, fine on the freeway or on hills. He is a budding engineering student so he was jazzed. His old man is jealous!

By the way, really liked the article. Count me as a regular reader of this and other EV/Plug-in websites. I am hopeful that with the redesigned Ford Escape, Ford will produce a plug-in version of it. I'll be one of the first in line.

· · 2 years ago

@indyflick,
"You didn't actually need to declare you're a Libertarian, your hypocrisy in this matter would have been sufficient."

I don't think your obnoxious comment to Jose G is called for.

Second, if the oversized, greedy government is going to return money to the public, of course, he should take it.

· · 2 years ago

@Jose G
"As a free-market purist, my thoughts are: if you think gas is too expensive, don't buy it!"

Couldn't have been said any better, and a great reason to buy an EV.

· · 2 years ago

@SageBrush,
"No one who knows me would ever call me right wing in my political views, and I bash libertarianism and tea-bagger idiocy every chance I get."

Why don't you take it over to MoveOn.org, because your commentary is not doing the EV movement any good here?

· · 2 years ago

indyflick said:

"You didn't actually need to declare you're a Libertarian,
your hypocrisy in this matter would have been sufficient."

Michael's response:

"I don't think your obnoxious comment to Jose G is called for.
Second, if the oversized, greedy government is going to return
money to the public, of course, he should take it."

I think indyflick's comment's regarding Jose's apparent hypocrisy are well founded, Michael.
If you are going to "talk the talk" of a free market economist, then you need to "walk the walk" when it comes to taking advantage - or not taking advantage, as the case may be - of these sort of tax breaks.

Perhaps Jose should consider donating a sizable portion of that EV tax break to a deserving charity of some sort: one that involves services to the economically deprived or one that involves environmental preservation . . . exactly the sort of thing that anyone to the political right of Dwight Eisenhower is now telling us "government isn't supposed to be doing for us" any longer.

Then, the following year, he can deduct that (or a sizable portion of that) EV tax break from his income taxes. Everyone wins then . . . and the aegis free market Capitalism survives the alleged advance of rampant Communism. :-)

· · 2 years ago

@Michael, "I don't think your obnoxious comment to Jose G is called for." Name calling is not appropriate behavior in an intelligent and civil conversation. People will tend to read such responses as coming from someone who is unable to articulate a logical argument and must instead resort to school yard tactics, such as name calling.

· · 2 years ago

@Benjamin Mead,

Comments about donations well taken.

However, I think indyflick's contention was missed in his statement, "You didn't actually need to declare you're a Libertarian,your hypocrisy in this matter would have been sufficient." The implication here is "you dont need to tell us you are a Libertarian, because we already know since you are a hypocrit." That's just plain obnoxious, and uncalled for.

· · 2 years ago

@indyflick,
""I don't think your obnoxious comment to Jose G is called for." Name calling is not appropriate behavior in an intelligent and civil conversation. People will tend to read such responses as coming from someone who is unable to articulate a logical argument and must instead resort to school yard tactics, such as name calling."

Huh???? There is no name here, and making things up certainly does not lead to a civil conversation. Your bashing of political groups does not help the EV movement.

· · 2 years ago

@Benjamin
I think you've mis-interpreted my views to some degree.

Libertarians call for a reduced role of government, but not all libertarians are anarchists. As a matter of fact if you vote Libertarian, by definition you are not creating anarchy.

For the reasons you mention, government is necessary, with its primary role being to protect people from aggression, theft, breach of contract, and fraud. Anything beyond that role is subject for debate. As a matter of practicality, things like record keeping are needed in order to guarantee property rights.

I am hardly a pure libertarian, more so a green-libertarian: pollution and destruction of the environment is a form of aggression as it affects others. See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Green_libertarian

I also part with pure libertarian philosophy when it comes to public education as it is the one thing that guarantees everyone has a chance to compete. Some diminished role in basic infrastructure is acceptable: roads might be better off in public hands, but the electric grid would be better off in private hands with multiple companies competing.

I disagree with the notion that Libertarians are to the political right. We are for more financial freedom (sympathetic with Republicans on many issues) as well as more individual freedom (sympathetic with Democrats on many issues). I disliked Bush as much as I dislike Obama, and for both the same reasons (Corporatism and Excessive Military spending) as well as different reasons. Clinton was not as bad. I did support Gore over Bush, even though Nader was more inline with my views, he didn't have a chance and it was a close election.

I didn't say no government spending, I said no subsidies, that is let private companies and technologies compete on a level playing field. No special favors for specific industries or companies. As a matter of fact, a good size for government, on a balanced budget, is 10-20% of GDP. Not close to 50% as it stands now.

· · 2 years ago

@Indyflick
@Benjamin

I see no hypocrisy in taking a subsidy even if you're against all subsidies.

I'm also against income taxes but I pay my income taxes anyway.
As a matter of fact, I probably overpay because I don't want to deal with the bureaucracy of finding every little deduction. I believe a flat sales tax that excludes necessities such as food and medicine would be better (err, some would consider that a subsidy, but it's my break to the poor) .

Fact is, we have a system, and we have to work with it and take advantage of it in hopes of coming out ahead, or at least even.

Would I vote to eliminate only the EV or PV subsidies? No, that would not create a level playing field. The oil subsidies are a far bigger problem.
Would I vote to eliminate all subsidies at the same time? Yes.

As long as we have subsidies, then you should take advantage of them. I don't blame oil companies for taking subsidies, I blame politicians for creating them.

@Michael
I think you know where I'm coming from.

· · 2 years ago

More controversy coming:

My investments are actually heavily weighted towards energy including oil & gas. You could say that I'm using oil money to buy my electric car.

If oil goes up, I have enough for my electric car, if it goes down, then I don't need it.

Did you know that most drug dealers don't do drugs?

· · 2 years ago

@Michael, "Huh???? There is no name here, and making things up certainly does not lead to a civil conversation. Your bashing of political groups does not help the EV movement."

You seem to have a lot of anger for some reason. I'm truly sorry if you have misinterpreted any of my posts. I never meant insight such anger in you.

· · 2 years ago

@Jose and Michael,
I'd like to thank you for helping to keep this EV forum safe for all political leanings and not let the liberal socialists turn it into yet another socialist love fest like so many EV organizations have degenerated to. I'm afraid that is another reason many hate EVs - the fact that the most vocal EV (or at least hybrid) supporters are liberal socialists that aren't shy from advertising their leanings on their Prius bumpers and windows.
There, we're back on topic :-)

· · 2 years ago

@ex-EV1 driver, dragging out the socialists name calling... A new low.

· · 2 years ago

@indyflick,
"You seem to have a lot of anger for some reason. I'm truly sorry if you have misinterpreted any of my posts. I never meant insight such anger in you."

I don't have any anger at all. I just think it is a bad idea to bash political groups if you are truly interested in promoting EVs. The success of EVs depends on transcending all political persuations. We all need to carry the message back to whatever group we align to.

Probably most people would associate the Prius with the political left. Well, Prius sales peaked in 2007 in the U.S., and never recovered, even through gasoline price spiked to over $5 a gallon. It has an image that turns a lot of people off. Do we want that to happen to EVs? I think not.

· · 2 years ago

@Indyflick,
". . . dragging out the socialists name calling... A new low."

Sorry, where I come from "Tea Baggers" is an attempt name calling. Referring to the idea that the government should fund and control essential services is "Socialism" in any definition I've heard of - and I've been through a few years of school and read a few things.

Please let's get this forum back on topic and realize that not all proposed approaches are going to be popular with everyone and as a forum, its good for people to be able to express their views.

· · 2 years ago

@Benjamin

"I think you've mis-interpreted my views to some degree. . . . "

Perhaps I have, Jose. Thanks for giving me a more nuanced view of your positions. While I might not agree with all of them (and some, surprisingly, I do,) it gives me a clearer picture of where you're coming from.

Where I part company is I believe that certain large government programs have done some enormous good for this country over the years. I'm thinking of things like the WPA projects of the 1930s and the interstate highway projects a couple of decades later. The one that occurred in my lifetime was the manned space program.

None of these were perfect in outcome and I'm sure there was some waste in regards to taxpayer funds. But the greater good they accomplished, I think, far outweighed the deficits. They were also goals that private industry alone could not have pulled off in their respective days.

I think ex-EV1's idea is a good one in regards to more on topic discourse for everyone here. Time for cooler heads to prevail. Or, as my 15 year old son would say . . . "Take a chill pill, man." :-)

· · 2 years ago

@ex-EV1 driver, "Sorry, where I come from "Tea Baggers" is an attempt name calling."

I never called you a "Tea Bagger". For those who may not be aware, if you look up "Tea bag (sexual act)" you will see what ex-EV1 driver is referring to.

· EFusco (not verified) · 2 years ago

While it's a nice list of myths, the rebuttals would be MUCH stronger if you provided some hard facts, links to stories that refute the myths, some numbers such as how much CO2 is used by cars vs EVs, etc. Instead you've created a he said/she said list that EV haters will just blow off.

In short, love the idea, hate the execution.

· Anonymous (not verified) · 2 years ago

let's see, costco removing charging stations for lack of use, epa clamping down on or closing coal power plants and the additional demand driving up the cost of electric (like the price of field corn products after ethanol). this sounds like a winner!!!

· David Murray (not verified) · 2 years ago

Ooops.. You can't stick a potato in the tailpipe of an EV.. well, maybe the Volt you can.

· Anonymous (not verified) · 2 years ago

Another advantage of EVs is that they are better suited for conducting drive-by shootings, as the absence of engine noise offers more stealth...

· Paul (not verified) · 2 years ago

12. BEVs are slow and don't accelerate quickly. Don't let on that in '94, The EV1 set a land speed record for production electric vehicles of 183 mph (295 km/h). And that electric motors have full torque at 0 RPM and are half way down the drag strip by the time the ICE gets busy.

13. The Battery packs are inconvenient to charge. Never mention the fact that a BEV can be charge at home, work, and at public charges at malls, restaurants & bars, cafes and any other location with a power outlet.

14. BEVs are horrible, ugly, small, little plastic boxes. Most EVs look like normal cars or sporty like the Tesla Roadster or the EV1. The US Army has electric tanks and most locomotives are powered by a electric motor fired by a diesel generator, menaing that SUV, Vans and Trucks can easily be powered by electricity.

15. Electric Car tech is too futuristic and new. The first BEV was made is 1828, the first ICE car was produced in 1885

· Josh Gallaway (not verified) · 2 years ago

For all of you that think these cars can not take you from East Coast to West Coast one day then check this out! The government is currently investing in this technology because it is a road that can pay for itself!

Videos and info about Solar Roadways and the future for EV Cars here:
http://www.solarroadways.com/main.html

The time of oil is almost over simply because my generation will not tolerate it!

· Planetgore (not verified) · 2 years ago

Electric cars have been there in the past, and they flopped. Why would it be different now? The only difference is that there will be more models to chose from by around 2013.

The Volt doesn't sell in the US, and that's a FACT (read the official sales numbers). The Leaf does better, no denying there, but for how long? And I hope you won't have too many extra's on your electric "dream" and that the next winters will be not as bad as the 3 previous ones. Global warming ey?

The electric car is not a "green" car, as the batteries are extremely bad for the environment, much worse than CO2, which is, and that's also a FACT, nothing more than plant food. And an essential gas on earth.

· · 2 years ago

@Planetgore,
You may realize that there have been a few technological advances over time, including power electronics and battery capacity. As an example, today's alkaline AAA battery holds as much energy as the old carbon-zinc D cells did back in the '60's for example and li-ion rechargeables are a whole lot better than the old lead-acid ones. Power electronics improvements probably aren't as obvious but semiconductor technology has made huge advances there as well.
Since your grasp of sales numbers doesn't seem to comprehend concepts such as time on the lot, premium paid above MSRP, supply, or backlog then I can see how you could come up with your conclusion that the Volt and Leaf aren't selling well.
If, however, you look beyond the total number sold and realize that every Leaf or Volt has been snapped up almost as soon as it reaches a lot, or in the case of the Leaf, has an paid reservation waiting for it, you'll realize that they are very popular.
Just because "global warming", like the internet were championed by VP Gore (for whom I have little regard or respect), doesn't mean they aren't true. Global warming will upset traditional weather patterns long before a few degrees will actually be felt, meaning that we could start seeing higher or cooler temperatures in different place, more and less rainfall, or higher or lower winds in different places.
It doesn't sound like electronics, economics, or meteorology are probably your strong suites, but you do seem to be good at reading propaganda put out by big business who hope to be able to keep selling you the same stuff as they make for as long as possible. I sincerely hope you are able to make a living off of reading propaganda so you don't have to rely on any of the former as a profession.

· Neila (not verified) · 2 years ago

Steve: Your article is absolutely wrong, EVs do suck. I'd love to have one, I love high tech gear, but until they make one I can actually use I'm stuck burning gas.

1. EVs **are** overpriced. The price of the Leaf is repeatedly misstated by you and others. The MSRP on a Leaf is $35,200. It costs more than an Accord EX V6 with less space and a near-useless 75 mile range. Please stop pretending tax credits are price reductions. They're no such thing.
2. Nobody who has a brain thinks that EVs will crash the grid. You're quoting YouTube users.
3. Same as #2. Stop using YouTube comments.
4. 100% true. There is no other reason to pay more for less unless you are trying to make a point.
5. There are only two true EVs on sale. the Leaf and the Tesla. Nissan is moving about 1000 Leafs a month. Honda alone sells 20x as many Civics.
6. EPA rating for Leaf range is 73 miles. In 'heavy stop-and-go' conditions that drops to 47 miles. I could drive my Camry from Manitoba to Chile if I needed to, in a Leaf I couldn't even make a second trip down to the city without a charge.
7. More misleading numbers. My 14 year old Camry has 320k on the clock and is still going strong. It cost $20k LESS than a Leaf. Nissan is (understandably) vague about the price of replacing the battery pack. Let's be kind and say it lasts 7-10 years, and the price of replacement is the same as a new gas engine. Game over? Not hardly.
8. A 1997 Camry timing belt is $55. Labor: About $200. Oil change (every 10k) is about $20.
9. Noise is low in any car traveling short distances. I often have to look at the tach to check if my Camry is running.
10. The future??? What future?? Liberals have been bleating about world destruction for decades now. When I was a kid it was another ice age, then it was a 'population explosion', then AIDS, now it's global warming. I have read articles like this one from the mid 80s and I still can't buy a usable EV.

· · 2 years ago

@Neila: Any fair cost comparison will account for the price of fuel vs. electricity over the car's lifetime. The LEAF isn't overpriced when you account for that. I spend roughly $25 a month charging my LEAF. And battery cost vs. capacity is still improving.

Regarding "the future", also keep in mind that half of the U.S. trade deficit is due to oil imports, too much of which comes from people who hate us. I don't want to help fund Al Qaeda whenever I drive around. And whether or not global warming is an actual problem has nothing to do with politics. I'm inclined to respect scientific consensus, in spite of Al Gore and other liberal politicians who will never get my vote.

· · 2 years ago

@Neila. There is a lot I could say in response. But let's just focus on your statements in #7. I am happy that your Camry made it to 320k miles. Those are great cars. Now -- assume 25mpg and $3 per gallon. You have spent well over $38,000 in gasoline. Ouch. So, Camry plus fuel is about $25k + $38k = $53k. LEAF plus fuel (for same number of miles) is about $27k+ $9k = $36k. Sure, your milage may vary. But still, the huge long-run difference in fuel costs will (I think) make many consumers happy to dump the pump.

· · 2 years ago

[MATH CORRECTED HERE] @Neila. There is a lot I could say in response. But let's just focus on your statements in #7. I am happy that your Camry made it to 320k miles. Those are great cars. Now -- assume 25mpg and $3 per gallon. You have spent well over $38,000 in gasoline. Ouch. So, Camry plus fuel is about $25k + $38k = $63k. LEAF plus fuel (for same number of miles) is about $27k+ $9k = $36k. Sure, your milage may vary. But still, the huge long-run difference in fuel costs will (I think) make many consumers happy to dump the pump.
With the Camry you have spent an extra 27 thousand. That's great! You could buy a whole LEAF with that!

· Ted Dillard (not verified) · 2 years ago

Brilliant. Love it. Posted it. It's all I can do to stop myself from stealing it.

Haters aside, EVs are not coming, they're here.

Great stuff Steve.

New to EVs? Start here

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