If you watched the Super Bowl, you were likely watching the various commercials. While there weren’t many thrilling commercials to remember as there have been in years past, it was hard to miss the fact that there were quite a few focused on electric cars (and trucks).
Biden has even spoken out about the prominence of the many ads, saying that electric cars are the future. “The ads during last night’s Super Bowl were clear: The future of the auto industry is electric.”
It’s true. Electric cars and trucks will be the future – but that future isn’t here yet. No matter how much Biden wants to push, we as a society are not ready for electric cars to take over in its entirety.
The average car will only go approximately 200 miles on a single charge. For people who travel extensively for work or who want to go on a road trip, that’s simply not going to get the job done.
We also have to look at where there are chargers for the electric vehicles. If you check Hilton, Marriott, or any other hotel chain, you’ll find that very few have EV chargers. In fact, you can pull up almost any major city and see hundreds of hotel options. The moment you filter to include ones that have chargers, the number of options will drop down to under a dozen.
Traveling in an electric car is a scary possibility at the moment. With insufficient chargers at gas stations and hotels, many people wonder how they will be able to charge the engine in order to reach their destination.
There’s another aspect of electric cars that Biden doesn’t want to seem to address at all – the sheer cost. Many of the electric vehicles in the market today cost at least $30,000 – and that doesn’t cover the cost of having an electric charger installed at the house, either. With the cost of goods skyrocketing, many Americans struggle to afford a $15,000 or $20,000 vehicle let alone one that is $30,000 or more.
The tax credit and the savings on gas aren’t enough to justify the higher cost of the vehicle itself.
The facts didn’t stop the manufacturers from spending millions to have their vehicles featured during the Super Bowl. General Motors featured electric vehicles using Austin Powers’ Dr. Evil. BMW borrowed Arnold Schwarzenegger to play a retired Zeus as they promoted their electric vehicle. Kia even used a robotic dog to promote their EV6.
Biden wants to spend over $5 billion over the next five years to improve the electric vehicle charging infrastructure. Meanwhile, Elon Musk has been quick to dismiss this as unnecessary money. There’s no reason that the government should be spending the money on chargers. Gas stations, hotels, and others should be spending the money as it will help them stay in business as people transition from gas to battery.
Still, Biden doesn’t listen. And the $5 billion will only help with the charging. It won’t help with the fact that people can’t afford the vehicles. It also won’t magically add another 200 miles to the range so that people don’t have to pull over for a few hours in order to charge the battery.
Electric cars are the future, but the sales in the U.S. show that Americans aren’t ready for the future anytime soon. Only nine percent of passenger cars sold in 2021 in the entire world were electric, including a measly 535,000 in the U.S.
Maybe Biden should stop focusing on ways to spend billions of dollars and, instead, work with the manufacturers to explore ways to reduce the overall costs and increase the range. Maybe, then, the future will come a lot sooner.