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GM says that they will be able to sell EVs at a cheaper price.

GM says that they will be able to sell EVs at a cheaper price.

www.yahoo.com/finance/news/gm-planning-electric-cars-wont-211435164.html

With Tesla lowering the cost of batteries, this makes sense.

andy.connor.e | July 16, 2019

are you suggesting that you're allowed to buy all the individual pieces from different places and then put them all together yourself? thats lunacy.

Tessnme | July 16, 2019

Dealers are the biggest reason GM will fail in the electric car business. Try this: Go to your local Chevy dealer and ask to see a Bolt. You will hear a number of false and disparaging words about the Bolt while the salesperson steers you to the nearest gas guzzler. Dealers make 80% of their net profit from maintenance. They won't sell a car needing little or no maintenance and they won't sell a technology they don't understand.

andy.connor.e | July 16, 2019

GM did not have a vision of selling the Bolt. They did it to beat the M3 to market, and to have met the regulation of building an EV.

NKYTA | July 16, 2019

"As for where they could get batteries, they could always outsource them to some third party manufacturer."

You've just gone crazy, now. ;-)

TM is talking about ~10 gigafactories for cars + grid storage. There is currently 3/7th's of one GF in Nevada the is building the same amount of Li-ion batteries as the rest of the world combined (partnered with Panasonic). TM is building another in China.

So, which third party manufacturer, exactly?

finman100 | July 16, 2019

a new GM tagline: We beat the competition to market and then get our pants beat in sales. winning?

and i do fear we, the US taxpayers, will, once again, bail out GM for "beating the competition to market". yay?

When will people wake up and see that GM is too big to continue to fail. wow.

The GM EV plan is we have no plan. Trucks! We got trucks! (shakes head)

SamO | July 16, 2019

+1000 NKYTA

The entire thesis that GM could just go out on the market, buy batteries, and then just retrofit all the cars as electric, is as stupid as it is stupid.

You need to build Gigafactory‘s worth of battery cell production in order to provide those batteries to an auto manufacture. To date, Tesla is the only auto manufacture with an actual factory capable of producing enough batteries for around 400,000 cars per year.

It’s not a lack of “optimism” on anyone’s part. It is a cool hard appraisal of the actions of GM. Among many others.

The only automaker that seems to have gotten the message is VW v because they were the first automaker in snared in diesel gate.

But they’re half assed effort with regard to charging stations via electrify America show that even they are in serious trouble.

Remember that facts don’t care about your feelings.

blue adept | July 16, 2019

@andy.connor.e

I'm not certain to whom or about what your comments (about '...pieces from different places...") are directed, care to clarify?
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@Tessnme

Good points all around! They have, quite literally, sealed their own fate.

+1
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@andy.connor.e

To qualify for the tax break/get the gov't. alternative fuels development subsidies! Alas, token offerings from what is turning out to be but a token auto manufacturer.
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@NKYTA

Tesla, and by extension Panasonic, aren't the only companies capable of producing li-ion batteries practically, they're just the only ones we're most familiar with given our affiliation with Tesla through their energy acquisition and storage platforms and, of course, their game changing, paradigm shifting, industry defining vehicle line up.

Add to that what should be the obvious likelihood that li-ion isn't the end-all-be-all of energy storage architectures, it's just the best option we have conceived thus far.

Don't worry, Tesla will be the benefactor of my technological meanderings regarding EV's/charge storage archetypes, just as they have and will always continue to be.

So not so crazy (not to say that I'm not a bit crazy), just not limiting the potential options/limiting myself to one charge storage/retention model.
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@finman100

The government no longer holds any stake in GM:

https://www.economist.com/leaders/2010/08/19/government-motors-no-more

https://www.upi.com/Business_News/2013/12/09/US-taxpayers-no-longer-part...

So there will be no more "bail outs", GM will sink or swim on its' own.

And anyway, ain't nobody gonna want to drive no GM murder box...!
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@SamO

As I reasoned with @NKYTA, li-ion batteries aren't the 'end-all-be-all' of charge storage platforms, they're just the best solution we've come up with thuis far, and there actually are a number of bulk li-ion battery producers:

https://www.investopedia.com/articles/personal-finance/042215/new-batter...

Those are the "facts", despite whatever your "feelings" might be telling you.

You're trying so, so hard, but failing miserably...Shame, I'd like to be able to expect better from you. :-(
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ε-(´・`) フ

"¡Whew!"

SamO | July 16, 2019

You previously “reasoned” that lead acid batteries should be used to convert cars so… Your reasoning is suspect

NKYTA | July 16, 2019

I agree that Li-ion batts May not be the future, but that is what we have now.
China/Japan are locking up some of the raw materials, but TM has partnered with the largest manufacturer of Li-ion batteries, Panasonic, and is building a Gigafactory in China, so clearly they are thinking ahead.

Some of those companies in your link, Enersys e.g. don’t make batteries that a GM could source for EVs.

So which third-party manufacturer of Li-ion batteries could a GM, or a retrofitter, could provide them at scale???

blue adept | July 16, 2019

@SamO

What I said was AGM batteries were but one option I'd try which, while a version of lead-acid batteries, enjoy the benefits of a very low internal resistance, are capable of delivering high currents on demand, offer relative long service life, even when deep-cycled, are maintenance free, provide good electrical reliability and are lighter than the flooded lead-acid type so, yeah.

Plus, based on a review of current ICE-to-BEV converters, they seem to be more widely used option at this time.

Again, I'm interested in determining the limits of what is readily available to the average consumer-at-large and of those options, AGM batteries are one of the more preferable choices.

NKYTA | July 16, 2019

@blue, you just keep ignoring the scale of these batts.

Stop doing that! Scale matters. ;-)

blue adept | July 16, 2019

@NKYTA

Exactly, they're coming up with a variety of charge storage options almost daily (not to say that li-ion isn't the future, per se) and, who knows, I just might stumble upon a solution, or an improvement, that no one has thought of yet while I'm tinkering around with my own little projects.

I've already thought of a half a dozen or so ways of improving Tesla's performance (which I'll relay to Elon when the opportunity presents itself), so I can only imagine what I might come up with once I immerse myself in the aftermarket ICE-to-EV conversion world.

While some of the companies might not, many do and/or are capable of producing at scale I'm sure, but if you're wanting me to provide a workable ICE-to-BEV conversion plan for this or that conventional automaker, then you need to direct them to contact me so that we can work out my fee because I'm neither free nor cheap.

Oh, and don't even bother sending GM my way, they're on their own.

blue adept | July 16, 2019

@NKYTA

I'm not overlooking "scale", just not limiting my review to just one option.

NKYTA | July 16, 2019

You are totally overlooking scale!

“isn't the future, per se) and, who knows, I just might stumble upon a solution, or an improvement, that no one has thought of yet while I'm tinkering around with my own little projects.”

Best of luck!

“I've already thought of a half a dozen or so ways of improving Tesla's performance (which I'll relay to Elon when the opportunity presents itself), so I can only imagine what I might come up with once I immerse myself in the aftermarket ICE-to-EV conversion world.”

Ah, I am getting it now. So you are saying you “might” know better than Elon and Franz. Check??

“While some of the companies might not, many do and/or are capable of producing at scale I'm sure, but if you're wanting me to provide a workable ICE-to-BEV conversion plan for this or that conventional automaker, then you need to direct them to contact me so that we can work out my fee because I'm neither free nor cheap.”

I’m asking you whom will produce the metric tons of batteries for a GM or VW. Still waiting for an answer...

I now think SamO was always right regarding you, even he is if somewhat abrasive.

I’ve met him IRL, and he is pretty congenial.

I’m pretty sure neither of us classify ourselves as Level 3 Geniuses.

You certainly must be. :-/

blue adept | July 17, 2019

@NKYTA

If you combine any one of those battery manufacturers with the accumulated resources of anyone of the major automakers and I'm sure they could resolve whatever issues regarding "scale".

Thanks! appreciate the support.

What I'm saying is that I know what I know, if you know what I mean, and that different people have differing ways of looking at things which might, possibly, result in some bit of heretofore unconsidered insight that could dramatically change everything.

Like I said above, if you combine resources towards a mutual goal, obstacles tend to fall away...Maybe.

I admit that it might be presumptuous of me to insist that the conventional ICE auto manufacturers might be able to pull a rabbit out of a hat given that their continued pigheaded reluctance to adopt the EV platform might well have served to irreversibly handicap them...Time will tell.

And now you're siding with the adversarial minority...Whatever is the world coming to?!

People tell me I'm pretty amiable in person, too, at least those few who I've had the pleasure of meeting anyway since I'm not that big on social interaction.

I wouldn't call myself a "genus", but do I have my moments. ;-)

blue adept | July 17, 2019

See, can't even spell 'genius' right...Womp-womp!

NKYTA | July 17, 2019

"If you combine any one of those battery manufacturers with the accumulated resources of anyone of the major automakers and I'm sure they could resolve whatever issues regarding "scale"."

"I admit that it might be presumptuous of me to insist that the conventional ICE auto manufacturers might be able to pull a rabbit out of a hat given that their continued pigheaded reluctance to adopt the EV platform might well have served to irreversibly handicap them...Time will tell."

So. Soon?

I won't hold my breath.

"And now you're siding with the adversarial minority...Whatever is the world coming to?!"

I'm "siding" with the fact that, right now, a GM could NOT build EVs at scale, since they don't have a source of batteries, and they haven't even started building a Gigafactory themselves or in partnership with anyone else (that I've heard of).

finman100 | July 17, 2019

"taxpayers took an $11 billion loss to keep the Big Three automaker alive."

jesus that's sad.

won't happen again? I'll be impressed if GM has anything of value in 5 years, tops.

TeslaTap.com | July 17, 2019

Back to GM - Actually there is a small hope with GM. They own Cruise Automation, and I'd rank them a bit behind Tesla in FSD technology that has some ability to be practical in a car. The software seems qutie good, but the sensor suite is still too expensive for a car for Level 4 or 5. Still they seem a bit ahead of others and have a more limited version deployed in the Cadillac cts. The Cruise Automation portion may be worth more than the rest of GM.

On the EV front, they have taken a few baby steps, but I wouldn't count them out yet. On the flip side, being run by finance and ICE engine people puts them at a huge disadvantage in the EV race.

blue adept | July 17, 2019

@NKYTA

What can I say?

I'm an optimist and like to think the best of people.

That, and I'd prefer to see the market wide adoption of the EV platform for all of our commuter needs sooner than later, an ultimately inescapable inevitability which would manifest itself just that much quicker should the world's other automakers choose to follow Tesla's lead.

Or...

Tesla ends up becoming the single largest EV manufacturer and sole employer of America's autoworkers.

Either or.

blue adept | July 17, 2019

@finman100

Yes, it is unavoidable to see GM as anything other than a sinking ship at this point, optimistic outlook or not.

NKYTA | July 17, 2019

“I'm an optimist and like to think the best of people.”

Optimist you are.

But it sounds like you are hoping to think the best of corporations, not sure that has worked out lately, especially auto companies.

;-)

blue adept | July 17, 2019

@TeslaTap.com

They have more than the Cruise Automation platform in the holdings they've accrued over the years as a corporation, but I'm not even going to waste the effort on piece-milling what aspects/holdings of GM might be salvageable, though I will say that I do see them permanently exiting the auto market and that I'd be wary of anything with GM's fingerprints on it, you know, given their history (altered ignition switches).

Just saying.

blue adept | July 17, 2019

@NKYTA

Corporations are founded, composed of and ran by people...I have faith in people.

As for corporations as an entity in and of itself, meh, not so much.

dmm1240 | July 17, 2019

After their experiences with the British East India Company before the Revolutionary War (the tea tax was a British government law intent on saving the world's first major corporation, which in turn caused the Boston Tea Party), the founders of our fledgling nation were highly suspicious of corporations. In the early years of the republic, corporate charters were good for only 20-30 years; to renew a corporation had to prove its activities were for the public good.

Somewhere along the line that initial requirement for civic responsibility gave way to the incessant quest for profits by any means necessary. I liked the old way better. Prove you're not a bane to the country and act in the public interest and we'll let you keep on trucking. Otherwise, sayanora baby.

NKYTA | July 18, 2019

That resonates with me @dmm ^^

TabascoGuy | July 18, 2019

"Tesla ends up becoming the single largest EV manufacturer and sole employer of America's autoworkers."

You got a peek at phase one of the super secret manifesto, didn't you?

SamO | July 18, 2019

Elon just tweeted the following in support of my position:

“If you dislike change, you're going to dislike irrelevance even more.” — Gen Shinseki

SamO | July 18, 2019

I’m “prickly” about stuff that is obvious:

Nobody except Tesla has batteries in scale.

Clowning aside, my point is the same as when this thread started: you can’t just throw some batteries in a gas car and be COMPETITIVE with Tesla.

By way of example, see the current abortion that is the GM Bolt. Not cost effective. Not attractive. Same as a $17,000 ICE shit box but twice the price.

Tesla-David | July 18, 2019

I agree also @dmm

blue adept | July 18, 2019

'I wouldn't call myself a "genus", but do I have my moments.'

Damn, I just realized that not only did I misspell 'genius' in an earlier post, I also had a dyslexic moment there, too. :-(

blue adept | July 18, 2019

@dmm1240

I feel that people also need to realize that it isn't necessarily the corporation as an individual entity itself so much as it is the SHAREHOLDERS who motivate the drive for profits with their ability to exert a controlling influence over the actions and behavior of the corporation.

There have, no doubt, been alot of 'corporations' who originally set out with the best of intentions only to fall prey to the whims and fancies of their shareholders who're only interested in 'black' lining quarterly profit margins regardless of the impact on the mission of the corporation itself.

That's the problem with having to depend on/having to open yourself to others to finance your venture as the "money" ends up running things because they're the ones pulling the purse strings that keep the corporation afloat in a sink or swim business arena.

Do not misunderstand me, I agree with your sentiment completely, it's just that sentiments are often the first layer of our best of intentions that are discarded when you're faced with the dissolution of your company and the termination of everyone who depends on you for their jobs and livelihoods.

blue adept | July 18, 2019

@TabascoGuy

Shhh.... ;-)

blue adept | July 18, 2019

@SamO

I don't think that anyone said anything about conventional automakers managing to produce something that will be able to 'compete' with Tesla, even remotely, only that they wouldn't have much of a problem converting from ICE to BEV given the availability of energy storage/charge retention options (the variety of battery technologies out there today).

An inability to compete on the same level doesn't preclude the ability to adopt a clean energy platform.

What I'm getting at is that I think that your "point" is a bit close-minded as technologies are always evolving and people are creative and ingenious, especially when they've run out of options and their backs are against the wall.

Take Ford teaming up with Volkswagen for example...

They are an industrious company and are very technically inclined as well. Add to that the fact that they have a variety of resources available to them from which to source a "battery" solution and even have an electric bus in the works which, if they maintain the same dimensions as the original VW buses, should prove to be a very lucrative model for them since they still enjoy a pretty loyal fan base.

With Ford and all of the accumulated resources at its' disposal planning on using the same platform to forge their own EV lineup they both could, very well, provide some actual competition for Tesla.

Increase your worldview and perhaps you, too, will be able to see some of the potential that exists in the market if those involved only choose to embrace it.

NKYTA | July 18, 2019

@blue

“Add to that the fact that they have a variety of resources available to them from which to source a "battery" solution”

Where? You’ve pointed out some alternatives, but nothing at SCALE. Apologies for the shouting, but this is a huge miss. Do they have the $$$$$$, sure, are they doing anything with those $$$$$$, no.

“With Ford and all of the accumulated resources at its' disposal planning on using the same platform to forge their own EV lineup they both could, very well, provide some actual competition for Tesla.

Increase your worldview and perhaps you, too, will be able to see some of the potential that exists in the market if those involved only choose to embrace it.”

Two things there.

1) you are wildly still missing the point. None of the big carmakers want to switch to electric, so they aren’t planning any sort of Battery factory, on any reasonable scale (that I’ve heard about).

2) “will be able to see some of the potential that exists in the market if those involved only choose to embrace it.”

They have chosen not to, full stop.

I’m happy to be wrong, since that would further transportation off burning dinosaurs, but it isn’t happening.

#3 Electrify America (VW) is an utter joke, on many levels.

NKYTA | July 18, 2019

Show me some facts that big auto believes in an electrified transportation solution and actually want to get out of the crazy carbon cycle we’ve locked ourselves into, and I’m happy to read up.

blue adept | July 18, 2019

@NKYTA

If that does prove to be the case, then my previous prediction in an earlier post to you will be proved out as the result of the nation's, perhaps even the world's, automakers lack of adopting the EV platform.

Tesla's, Tesla's everywhere, in all shapes and forms, for as far as the eye can see...

Imagine.

TeslaTap.com | July 19, 2019

I'm with NKYTA on this one. Legacy automakers are only offering lip service so far for EVs. They are always the future, and will still be the future after they are dead and gone. The corporate culture is so against EVs, and they have so much invested in ICE, unless the USA requires EVs, they will do the absolute minimum, and perhaps less than that (i.e. buying Tesla's EV credits rather than just making an desirable EV). I really wish this wasn't true, as the big automakers have resources, but that's not the issue. It's the corporate culture and dealer profits that make a desirable EV impossible to design, produce and sell.

There are a few companies that get it. I like that Volvo created a whole new EV division and will have a new sales channel. NIO (from China) has promise, but it will be years before they make a dent in the US market. Plenty of EV startups too that I hope one or two make it. More likely a big legacy automaker will buy them and proceed to destroy it with committees to maximum mediocrity and funnel sales through existing dealer networks that hate EVs.

BuffaloBillsFan | July 19, 2019

@dmm1240, @NKYTA, @TeslaTap.com. +1000.

The fossil fuel industry will NEVER EVER provide affordable, long range EVs. Their entire business model relies on sucking fossil fuels, frequent oil changes, changing filters, etc. They will go to their inevitable deaths breathing carbon monoxide.

I suspect that in 10-20 years, we will be talking about Tesla, Nio, and other startup all-electric vehicles as the behemoths of the auto industry. The established brands will never be able to pivot their corporate agenda to all EV production. The gas-guzzling car is not their only source of revenue. Car maintenance is a massive industry unto itself. Thus, they will resist the upcoming EV revolution until they are guillotined.

I look forward to the day that Nissan, Toyota, GM, BMW, Audi, Ford et. al. say goodbye to this beautiful world! They will leave it bereft, but at least they will leave.

I think that time is coming soon . . .

blue adept | July 19, 2019

@dmm1240, @NKYTA, @TeslaTap.com, @BuffaloBillsFan, & even @SamO

Sooo much pessimism....

I'm not saying that any of you aren't correct in your assessment of the overriding pigheaded stubbornness demeanor of the world's automakers, I'm just saying that there's always the possibility, albeit a small one (a very, very small one), for at least a few (like the Asians and Europeans who've already embraced and made some actual headway towards converting to a EV commuter platform as part of adopting a fully renewable energy based power infrastructure because of their acceptance of the reality of Human exacerbated climate change) to choose not to run themselves into the ground, that's all.

I'm a hopeless optimist I guess you could say.

Tessnme | July 19, 2019

Ford has formed a development team to work on EVs and named it “Team Edison”. They just don’t get it and they never will.

SamO | July 19, 2019

I’m an optimist that Tesla will transition millions of vehicles to EV and then will be providing 100s of millions of Tesla Network rides before another automaker figures out how to write a few lines of software.

So I’m an optimist based on facts and real possibilities.

GM and Ford don’t need to exist for an all-EV future.

NKYTA | July 19, 2019

@SamO, but don’t we need VW, et all to come on board for the mission statement?

NKYTA | July 19, 2019

@blue, show me the $$$$.

TeslaTap.com | July 20, 2019

@blue adept - You may be surprised that I and expect most others would love to be wrong. Generally I'm an optimist too, but the inability of legacy companies to see the future or do anything about it is disheartening. Perhaps some new CEO will see the light and change the entire direction of one of these companies. Seems they are only willing to change if forced too. That's a poor recipe for success as it creates resentment throughout the organization. This allows corruption of the best ideals and generates mediocre products at best.

SamO | July 20, 2019

@NKYTA,

Tesla needs to go faster. The time for VW et al to start was in 2012.

Nearly 2020 and no other EV yet worth buying.

Tesla’s mission was to accelerate the advent of EVs and they have succeeded. But that mission success doesn’t required European or Japanese car companies to survive.

There are Chinese car companies accomplishing Tesla’s goals. Just hardly any evidence that big auto will be able to turn their Titanic quickly enough.

VW should have survived as they were caught cheating first. But GM/Ford/Toyota/Subaru ... the jury is still out but the verdict appears a forgone conclusion.

Earl and Nagin ... | July 20, 2019

@TT,
You said: "Perhaps some new CEO will see the light and change the entire direction of one of these companies."
Unfortunately, history has not shown that changing a CEO's mind is enough. Just look at Toyoda and Ghosn from Toyota and Nissan/Renault (respectively). Musk convinced Toyoda and Shai Agassi convinced Ghosn that EVs would dominate. Unfortunately, the antibodies within their organizations formed and stunted their EV offerings to mediocre at best.
It shall be interesting to see how Mary Barra and the new Daimler guy fare.

NKYTA | July 20, 2019

@SamO, fair point on the China auto companies.

Roger1 | July 20, 2019

Tesla's strength is expertise in the power train. No other company seems to understand how to build a battery pack and manage it for best performance and longevity. Tesla electric motors are also a strong point. Bloomberg has a YouTube video about tearing down a model 3 to reverse engineer it. The electric motors have design features that given them excellent performance for automotive purposes. Apparently Tesla has things to learn about the best way to build the rest of the car.

The worldwide auto industry produces 10s of millions of vehicles every year. The individual companies have the knowledge and skills to understand consumer demand, design vehicles and engineer them for efficient, low cost production. Automakers manage supply chains on the front end and distribution on the back. The only difference between an ICE vehicle and a battery electric is the power train. Auto companies will build battery electric (or fuel cell) vehicles just like they the build ICE vehicles.

The idea that auto companies will not build battery electric vehicles is not supportable. Big organizations are not good at handling radical change. Look at the failures of IBM, HP and Xerox to grasp the importance of personal computers. They understood business uses of computing and couldn't understand what people would do with a PC. Intel, Apple and Microsoft grew out of that failure.

You might think that I just proved that the big auto companies will not survive the change to electric vehicles but that is not the case. The big companies that failed to understand PCs served the business market not personal users. Automakers serve the consumer market and understand what people want to drive. Electric power is just a technology change to incorporate in the product line.

The big automakers have been in the game at a very small scale compared to their ICE production from the beginning. GM built the EV1. Gas hybrids lead to PHEVs and eventually BEVs. Nissan played a significant role with the LEAF. More LEAFs have been sold than Teslas. Toyota played a role with the Prius PHEV.

Companies don't like to change what they are doing unless it results in higher revenue and more profitability. Battery electric cars represent a business risk because purchasers don't know about them. Two obvious questions need good answers - how do I charge the car and how far will it go? Why is buying an electric car better than getting another gas car that I understand?

Electric cars need infrastructure that just barely exists today. Tesla recognized the need for charging stations and built its own network. A startup company led by a visionary can make that step but a big company can't. In many parts of the world, concern about climate change has caused governments to push for electric cars. Startup EV charging companies aided by government money has produced a rudimentary charging infrastructure for PHEVs and BEVs purchased by adventurous buyers with help from government subsidies. What has happened so far is almost a proof of concept for the viability of electric vehicles. Tesla has played a major role in the grand experiment.

Charging infrastructure seems more developed in parts of Europe than in the US. Ionity, supported by car makers, is deploying high power CCS chargers up to 350 kW. CHAdeMO chargers exist to charge the population of LEAFs, Tesla and other BEVs. Norway, in particular, has a large population of EVs and almost half of new vehicle sales are for electric vehicles. Of particular note is the arrangement between Mercedes and the charger companies to support their EQC product. The Mercedes vehicles can simply plug in and charge like a Tesla at a Supercharger.

The conditions now exist for the major automobile companies to get into the electric vehicle market. Some companies like VW group, Mercedes and Jaguar have product entering the market. The Audi etron is available in North America now. A great deal has been made about the shortage of suitable batteries. If you worked for one of the battery companies capable of producing lithium ion batteries wouldn't you be figuring out how to deliver massive quantities of product to the major auto companies? Investments will be made. Big contracts and profits are waiting.

Automakers build vehicles their customers want to buy. If people demand electric vehicles then automakers will build them. ICE vehicles are not a religion, just a power train.

Madatgascar | July 20, 2019

@Roger1, all good points, but your logic falls apart at the end where you conclude “Automakers build vehicles their customers want to buy.” The statement is correct, but you forget one key thing: Automakers’ “customers” are not car buyers. They are automobile dealerships. And dealerships don’t want EV’s. Period, end of story.

I make this point every chance I get but I don’t see anyone else making this distinction. It’s huge.

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