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From Forbes: 03/08/2020
By Brooke Crothers

https://www.forbes.com/sites/brookecrothers/2020/03/08/dont-believe-the-electric-car-hype-a-grim-trip-to-one-of-the-biggest-auto-malls-in-the-us-or-this-is-why-tesla-is-winning/amp/

If you believe the media hype, you would think we’re on the brink of an EV revolution.

I’ll believe it when I see it.

tl:dr: we’re well into 2020 and at one of the largest auto malls in the U.S., it’s wall to wall gas cars and there is hardly an EV to be found on acres and acres of dealer lots. The upshot: Tesla is the only automaker that is fully committed to EVs.

It’s shocking to me that 10 years after the Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf debuted little has changed, with the exception of Tesla.

Of course, the PR departments of the largest legacy car makers are working overtime trying to make you (and the gullible media) believe that the electric future is here. It’s a mirage.

I visited what is billed as one of the largest auto malls in the U.S. in Cerritos, Calif., an area in Los Angeles. It bears repeating that this is Los Angeles. One of the EV hotbeds of the U.S.

Here’s a quick rundown of what I found visiting as many dealers at the Cerritos Auto Square as I could on a recent Saturday. (Later that weekend, I also visited a couple of dealers near Sherman Oaks.)

Chevrolet — poor: EV enthusiasts familiar with the Chevy Spark EV, Chevy Volt, and Chevy Bolt (I’ve owned or leased all three**) might be surprised at this rating. The fact is, there were no Bolts on the lot at this dealer at the time I visited. This was verified by a salesperson. Here’s the problem. So, let’s say you’re a customer who is just beginning to look into buying an EV and you go to the Chevy dealer with the intention of “seeing what this electric car thing is all about” and wanting to test drive one. The only thing you’ll find is gas guzzlers and muscle cars like Silverados, Corvettes, Camaros, and Suburbans.

I still wonder about GM’s broad commitment to EVs. GM president Mark Reuss and CEO Mary Barra talk a good EV game and just this past week GM laid out big plans for future electrification. But, again, all this noise is coming 10 years after GM started production of the Volt (when it also boasted about a big, bright EV future) and twenty years after the EV1.

I also recently returned from a trip to Philadelphia where I visited a suburban Chevy dealer that had no Bolts — and not even a used Volt — on the lot. Fact is, you would have never known that GM makes an EV by visiting that Philadelphia area dealer. GM’s commitment is certainly not consistently showing up at dealers.

And one more thing…GM has no large-scale, nationwide charging infrastructure like Tesla’s. That’s a big factor in Tesla’s popularity. Companies like EVgo and ChargePoint have national charging networks but they are spotty and there is a dearth of fast-charging (Level 3) locations.

An EV isn’t desirable to the vast majority of American car buyers if they have don’t have ready access to a public charging network.

(Click on the link above for more)
 

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An EV isn’t desirable to the vast majority of American car buyers if they have don’t have ready access to a public charging network.
An EV isn’t desirable to the vast numbers of American car buyers who don’t have ready access to an electric outlet at home, because if they can’t recharge the car at home, there’s certainly no place at all in town they can go, every day if necessary (who would want to?), and fully recharge the car for the next day’s commute at reasonable prices while they wait. The dc fast charging infrastructure isn’t designed to serve the local work commute vehicle market.
 

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EV adoption will take off when these three things happen:

1. Universal charging standard (with appropriate adapters where needed).

2. The number of EV charging stations are as ubiquitous as gas stations.

3. Charge from 0-100% can be achieved in under 10 minutes.

1 & 2 are policy/political challenges. 3 is a technology challenge. Of course, a sudden jump in gas prices wouldn't hurt either :)
 

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You would think Toyota would have an EV, but they dropped it.
 

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Honda has dropped the Clarity Electric for 2020 but still offers the Clarity Fuel Cell and the PHEV. Both Honda a Toyota really want to go hydrogen.
 

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From Forbes: 03/08/2020
Chevrolet — poor: EV enthusiasts familiar with the Chevy Spark EV, Chevy Volt, and Chevy Bolt (I’ve owned or leased all three**) might be surprised at this rating. The fact is, there were no Bolts on the lot at this dealer at the time I visited. This was verified by a salesperson. Here’s the problem. So, let’s say you’re a customer who is just beginning to look into buying an EV and you go to the Chevy dealer with the intention of “seeing what this electric car thing is all about” and wanting to test drive one. The only thing you’ll find is gas guzzlers and muscle cars like Silverados, Corvettes, Camaros, and Suburbans.
I still wonder about GM’s broad commitment to EVs. GM president Mark Reuss and CEO Mary Barra talk a good EV game and just this past week GM laid out big plans for future electrification. But, again, all this noise is coming 10 years after GM started production of the Volt (when it also boasted about a big, bright EV future) and twenty years after the EV1.
I also recently returned from a trip to Philadelphia where I visited a suburban Chevy dealer that had no Bolts — and not even a used Volt — on the lot. Fact is, you would have never known that GM makes an EV by visiting that Philadelphia area dealer. GM’s commitment is certainly not consistently showing up at dealers.
And one more thing…GM has no large-scale, nationwide charging infrastructure like Tesla’s. That’s a big factor in Tesla’s popularity. Companies like EVgo and ChargePoint have national charging networks but they are spotty and there is a dearth of fast-charging (Level 3) locations.
An EV isn’t desirable to the vast majority of American car buyers if they have don’t have ready access to a public charging network.
You really put your finger on a few of my recent gripes. This is a valid time to discuss these again, as GM just made a big announcement as to all the new tech and vehicles coming out in the next couple of years. I will still give a node to GM for being a leader in EV technology. But in addition to having vehicles on the lots to test drive, they need people who are knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the products and can provide a decent experience to potential buyers who are interested in test driving their products.

Some of these things make me doubt their commitment.
I would summarize some areas of improvement needed with this list:

  • Create a cross country EV charging infrastructure.
  • Provide vehicles to test drive.
  • Provide knowledgeable product advocates at the dealerships.
  • Provide good support for existing EV products including the Volt.
Tesla solved the cross country charging issue. GM needs to stop making excuses, get the check book out, and solve the problem.
 

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Over the past two weeks, we have been trying to look at a new Bolt. I web searched nearby Chevy dealers for stock, and found something like 15 Bolts "in-stock" at Paradise Chevy in Temecula. We jumped on the bike and ran down there (20 miles). Turns out, there aren't actually any new Bolts there. Only pictures of them on the internets.

We did find five new Bolts in stock and on the lot at Riverside Chevy. As usual, the sales folk there don't know much about these cars. While test driving a 2020 Premier, I noticed how very loud the anti-collision noisemaker is on that car and wondered if there was something wrong. The sales guy in the back seat said, "Don't worry, that is the 'regen' "

We are not buying now, because after the test drive I realized I like my Volt more.
 

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A friend of mine is looking for a used Bolt. A couple of weeks ago he went to test drive one at a local Chevrolet dealer and was told that he couldn't because its battery was low.
 

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Fortunately the USA is not the world. Most countries have set dates for the outlaw of the gas/diesel car. There are 9 free chargers in the town of 5,000 here and you see electrics all over the place (and we are not the highest percentage of the places around here). Some countries are selling EVs at a 60% rate. Gas stations are installing fast chargers in their gas stations. There is no Tesla chargers here but we don't need them. That the US is backwards to the rest of the world is because the politicians are bought and paid for by the oil companies with the result that they have some of the lowest gas prices. Toyota and Honda invest in fuel cells because the Japanese government backs the hydrogen industry which sees it a major player there. EV still don't have parity with ICE cars and won't until battery costs go below $100 per Kw (ignoring quantity manufacturing). Until that happens you will only see early adopters.
 

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...until battery cost go below $100 per kWh.
 

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I see a lot of Teslas around. You can go cross-country (US) just using the Tesla Supercharger network. Also Electrify America has built their own network. The more demand there is for EVs, the more I think manufacturers will want to meet that demand. Battery low on a test drive Bolt at the dealer? Just say "Ok, I'll come back when it's charged" or try another dealer. Better yet, just buy that dealer out and put 50 Bolts on the lot :cool:
 

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...until battery cost go below $100 per kWh.
GM seems to be hinting that price will be hit within the next 5 years with it's Ultium battery, partly by replacing expensive cobalt with aluminum in their new chemistry.
 

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This guy nailed it.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Over the past two weeks, we have been trying to look at a new Bolt. I web searched nearby Chevy dealers for stock, and found something like 15 Bolts "in-stock" at Paradise Chevy in Temecula. We jumped on the bike and ran down there (20 miles). Turns out, there aren't actually any new Bolts there. Only pictures of them on the internets.
A few months ago, I was looking to test drive a Bolt. After searching all the local dealership web sites, I found exactly ONE Bolt in stock at a dealership in New Orleans. This was the only one in the state of LA and I didn't feel like driving 100 miles just for a test drive.
 

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"Making their own" with partners, just like GM.

"Tesla has also been setting itself up to succeed in the battery game and dominate the market with its partnerships. It has a long relationship with Panasonic that helped it manufacture batteries in Giga Nevada, but has also signed battery supply agreements with LG Chem and CATL in China."
Tesla bough Maxwell and other companies... not working in partnership with them.

Maybe you haven't heard about this?
https://www.cnbc.com/2019/06/26/tesla-secret-lab-building-battery-cells-to-reduce-panasonic-dependency.html

and this?
https://electrek.co/2019/10/09/tesla-panasonic-relationship-hits-hard-times-tesla-make-own-batteries/

and this?
https://cleantechnica.com/2019/10/22/the-elec-tesla-to-produce-its-own-batteries/

and this?
https://finance.yahoo.com/news/tesla-might-serious-producing-own-160745478.html


were you living under a rock? :)
 

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So Panasonic, LG and CATL have been dropped? These are no longer involved in Tesla battery production?

To quote from one of those articles

Even if Tesla’s effort to start making battery cells is successful, the company is not likely to cut ties with Panasonic and other battery suppliers any time soon.
 

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So Panasonic, LG and CATL have been dropped? These are no longer involved in Tesla battery production?

To quote from one of those articles
Ha ha ha! You're now playing semantics to justify what you stated earlier. Of course they're still fulfilling remaining obligations even if they started making their own batteries. It's written in the articles that you didn't bother to read. Their current partners cannot fulfill all the demand at the prices they wanted and it would be good to develop and make their own batteries. GM is stuck with their partners and have no plans of making their own.
 

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Ha ha ha! You're now playing semantics to justify what you stated earlier. Of course they're still fulfilling remaining obligations even if they started making their own batteries.
In your original "they'll be making their own" post you neglected to mention they are still working with not one, not two, but three battery partners.

It's written in the articles that you didn't bother to read.
I was able to quote the article verbatim without reading it? OK :)
 
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