Electric cars roundup: recent news

For a variety of reasons, over the last few months, I have not written as often as I would like. As such, I have accumulated quite a few articles that I wish to mention. While the animal articles require their own space, others do not. As such, this post will include electric car news from all over the world. Dates are a little muddled (and may be relatively out of date), and it is possible that with some of these, changes have been made. We are working hard on improving the website, which is taking much of our time, we hope to have a breakthrough soon. Below is a list of articles written, click on read more to read each of the articles listed.

-The Tesla s P100D has a 0-60 time of 2.28 seconds

Department of Transport in the UK has a new scheme which will help with the cost of installing charging points in places like schools and similar

 –China wants us to buy its electric cars

  –2023 best selling car was the Tesla model Y 

 –A new possible battery breakthrough would both cut the cost of batteries, and bring down the length of time it would take to charge to something similar to that of filling up a petrol or diesel tank 

 –when will all UK cars be pure electric 

Volkswagen is loosing the electric car race to China and Tesla 

EU has set a target of 30 million electric cars on its roads by 2030

 –The Chinese government is promising to rein in the number of electric cars its companies are making, so as to not flood the west

Freezing temperature are known for reducing electric car range, caused long queues for charging  

 –Autocar published an article looking at how green electric cars actually are

Paris Mayor plans to triple SUV parking tariffs to cut air pollution

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Ford has made clear its aim to take on Tesla and BYD by launching cheap electric cars

Is this news to anyone? It is known that the car industry is in a race to move to electric. Given the vast saving for the end line consumer, the huge reduction in pollution, and the fact that many countries have already set dates where combustion engine car sales will be banned, surely the response to this news is ” why have you not made this move before?

What is clear, is that ford is developing a smaller and cheaper EV platform. Well this is great, but everyone is trying to create small affordable electric cars.

Now, how many of these small cars is ford aiming to sell? Currently, ford makes a $28,000 loss on each electric cars. Which means that they need to bring this down, or 2 million electric cars sold my ford would cause a huge loss.

Tesla is making progress on their own cheap model – the so called tesla model 2. This is aimed to hit the target of $25,000, or around £18,000, and they are expecting to make millions of this model, which does not seem unreasonable.

We need to remember, that while we look on ford as an old car company (and they are) at the current moment, they are not bigger than tesla. So in 2023 tesla sold 1.81 million vehicles, all electric, while ford sold 1.99 million, however only 72,000 of these were electric. If in the future, only electric cars count, then perhaps we should already be looking at ford as the minnow in a pond with a huge shark that is tesla. If we look at profit, this might make this clearer, Ford made profits of $4.3 billion, while Tesla made profits of 15 billion.

So, is Ford a tiny electric car maker, or not? Is it going to become one of the most profitable electric car makers, or is it going to become a small car maker? Time will tell, however, the problem is that the 2 million small electric cars that ford says its is targeting, is also the same number that Tesla is going to be targeting. Can the world demand sustain 2 million from each? Possibly, in the future, but Ford may well find that diving into the pond of small Electric cars is a hard place to make money, and finding enough demand for 2 million electric cars may well prove to be the harder part of the transition.

Time will tell, but they certainly have their work cut out for them.

Should Hertz dumping 20,000 electric cars be a warning to car buyers?

So Hertz is downsizing its electric car fleet, just a few years after buying them. Should this put off electric car buyers? Well, I would argue no, and I suspect that Hertz will live to regret this day.

So have Hertz abandoned electric cars? Nope, it is true that in the current climate, they have scaled back their electric buying car program from 100,000 cars to just 50,000 cars, but this is still a significant number.

Given that in the USA they own around 500,000 cars (elsewhere it is mostly franchise so they do not own the cars) suggesting that at the current time, Hertz will have around 10% of its fleet as electric.

What has prompted this? Well, largely a higher cost of repair cost.

The problem for Hertz is simple. They get paid a rate, to rent the car, they save nothing by it being electric, on the other hand, the renter, might save plenty of money, as refueling can be far cheaper (though admittedly, with currently high electric prices on this side of the Atlantic, public chargers are often just as expensive as petrol.

So, no, this does not (as business insider suggests) mean the end of the electric car. In fact, given that they are selling around 20,000 electric cars, it is quite likely that it will boost the number of electric cars in public hands.

It is true, that some fixes are far more than they should be (we have found that) but it is also clear that overall, electric car owners save money. Whether this will accelerate the change or slow it down, time will tell. It is often the case that once experienced few want to go back to a fossil fuel car, so renting them is useful. Unfortunately, given the price, Hertz treated them as premium, which meant this had less affect than might otherwise have been the case.

I think they will come to regret this, the world is going electric, and the transition is accelerating around the world. It seems likely that they will have to reverse this change within a decade.

“EU must cut carbon emissions 3 times faster to meet targets”

A new report has calculated that the EU is only cutting carbon emissions at 1/3 of the rate which is required in order to meet the 55% cut – from buildings, transport and agriculture by 2030

While emissions are falling, they are not falling anywhere near fast enough

Over the last 30 years, carbon emissions have dropped by 32% . while this is an impressive amount, it is far short of the promise.

The best predictions for the future, are that by 2050 the EU will have cut emissions by around 43%. While this is an important step, it is far short of what has been promised.

More importantly, at the current rate, we will have only met a further 1/3 by 2050.

The job is not done – much of the carbon emissions from the last 3 decades have been easy to achieve. They have been achieved through efficiency gains, and moving production offshore. Very little change in the EU behaviour has been required.  

An easy gain, both for individual cost, and emissions is electric cars. A faster transition is likely to save countries much money too (though it is true that at the current time, there is an issue with the tax revenue coming from fossil fuel sales.

It is far cheaper to run clean alternatives, so we must make that show in the figures.

Some governments are making efforts to help, but not in every way. For instance, in the UK, you can get money towards an electric car, but not a used one (which given the reduction in price, is likely to go further and help more. On heat pump the government is doing better – with the increase in the air-source heat pump grant, the cost to individuals has reduced to around 3500 (on average buying a heat-pump as well as installing and changing radiators to work with the lower temperature (bigger) the cost is around £11,000. However, many people have missed the advertising, and are unaware. It is true that new build homes will not be allowed to install boilers after 2025. 

However, older houses with gas boilers will be unaffected by the change until 2035. But the average cost for a new boiler, plus installation is thought to be around £4000, in 2023, meaning that for many homes, it will be cheaper to replace now.

Furthermore, while an air-source heat pump is thought to be around £50 more to run each year, should something like a thermal solar panel be added, the cost is far lower.

With carefully designed rules for builders, the switch to low cost private transport, and low cost private house heating can be cheap and obvious. At the current rate, though, this is not being met.

In the UK, clearly better understanding and education is essential, and builders need to see that adding things like thermal solar panels is a must.

Will it happen? will the EU meet our 55% target? at current speed, it is clear that this will be hard work. However, if this money is not found, we are likely to need far more in the future to adapt to the world we are creating.

Is the COP conferences a waste of time, if climate change deniers are able to lead it?

At the current time, countries in the region in which the COP is held will chose a president. In theory, that is fine, however, in practice if this is going to continue then the middle east should be banned from hosting the conference.

So, what precisely did Sultan Al Jaber say, which was so troubling?

Firstly, he claimed that a ‘phase-out of fossil fuels would not allow sustainable development “unless you want to take the world back into caves'”.

He then claimed that there is ‘no science’ to suggest phasing out fossil fuels is the only way to achieve 1.5C.

After being laughed at, over this utterly insane statment, he suggested that the comment had been misinterpreted. It should be noted, that this was in response to a question from a woman, which he was relatively rude about.

Do you think this woman misunderstood?

He even had the gall to suggest that the misrepresentation was undermining his desire to reduce carbon emissions (perhaps if this is true, it can start with his huge fossil fuel company can show this?). More than 100 countries are already supportive of this.

The worlds uptake of electric cars must accelerate. This is partly underway – last year around 67 million cars were sold, but 14% of these were electric, up from just 9% the previous year. The uptake is accelerating.

It should also be noted that apart from extreme heat in the UAE, continued global warming will also damage the UAE in extreme ways. The UAE economy is 0.5% of the global economy, in the end, places like this may refuse to accept the end of oil, and will have to be bankrupted, as cars move to 100% and many other industries clean up their act.


Europe is heading towards it net zero goal but electric car costs might be a stumbling block

While an increasingly large number of people are switching to electric cars, there is a growing concern that this change is not happening fast enough.

Currently the EU sells 10 times more electric cars than just 6 years ago, which is impressive, so what is the concern.

Might this be the future of motorway rest stops?

For many people, they believe that their next car will be electric, but a large portion of people are awaiting a big crash in prices. This forgets two things, firstly that with electric cars, much more of the cost comes at the beginning, so it may well be that electric cars are always slightly more expensive. One of the things being learnt is that it is not enough to incentivise electric cars, you also have to disincentivise combustion engine cars.

There are places where this is working well, such as central London, which has a congestion charge, but this is not charged on electric cars. It is true that this is going to end soon, but still should give a reduction for those driving electric cars. However, it means that in places like South Kensington, the number of electric cars is shooting up.

There are a variety of help across Europe, with Romania offering over 11,000 to help, or France having a scheme for poorer households to allow them to rent an electric car for only 100 euros a month.

The dramatic rise in electricity prices since the start of the invasion in Ukraine has also not helped, as if there is not cheap electricity at night, the saving are far lower than they used to be. Will Europe hit its targets? I think there is still work to be done, but it is certainly moving rapidly in the right direction. I look forwards to every motorway stop being like the all electric gridserve (look at the fullycharged episode below).

The UK has said that pure petrol and diesel cars will be banned from sale – impact? Electric cars are increasingly affordea

Arguments against electric cars continue, from suggestions that the range they have is not high enough, the batteries do not last long enough, they are worse for the environment, they will break down too much or there isn’t enough choice as well as many more.

Would you rather fill up with petrol or electricity?
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AA says charging is less per mile than petrol? when has it not been – only in very specific circumstances is this not true

So at the current time, tesla charges 50p per kwh (for almost everyone charging at home will account for most, so supercharging probably only accounts for about 10% but we will look at this later).

How does this compare? in the UK fuel is currently 165p for diesel and 147p for petrol.

Now one needs to compare like for like – it is unreasonable to compare a tesla s with a fiat punto, these are not comparable cars. So We will do it car by car. Please note, as teslas are only every electric, I will be comparing them to their nearest petrol BMW competitor – BMW does have electric cars in competition – though generally these get lower miles per kwh.

As such, I have compared the 4 main tesla cars to their nearest equivalent BMW (fair warning lots of numbers below

Continue reading “AA says charging is less per mile than petrol? when has it not been – only in very specific circumstances is this not true”

Resolution to ban the sale of electric cars in Wyoming from 2035 effectively dead

A group of republican state lawmakers introduced a resolution that called for the sale of electric cars to be phased out by 2035. Apparently, the resolutions sponsor does not want them banned (in which case a very poorly worded resolution) he just wanted to make a statement about the phasing out of gas-powered vehicles in other states.

So why was all this undertaken? Apparently a group of the states republican lawmakers are aiming to safeguard the oil and gas industries.

It was suggested that the bill would hinder the states ability to trade with other states “Wyoming’s vast stretches of highway, coupled with the lack of electric vehicle charging infrastructure, make the widespread use of electric vehicles impracticable for the state” so the bill stated.

This is frankly stupid: at the moment there is little charging infrastructure, because there are few electric cars. However, the ban is intended to come into force in 2035 which is roughly 2 whole car cycles into the future. Do these people really believe that there wont be more charging infrastructure by then?

Among the reason cited are the following:

  • Batteries used in electric vehicles could contain critical minerals whose “domestic supply is limited and at risk for disruption”
  • Minerals used in electric batteries are not easily recyclable or disposable, meaning that municipal landfills in the state could be required to develop practices to dispose of these minerals in a safe and responsible manner
  • The proliferation of electric vehicles at the expense of gas-powered vehicles will have deleterious impacts on Wyoming’s communities and will be detrimental to Wyoming’s economy and the ability for the country to efficiently engage in Commerce

Lets take these points in turn:

Point one, suggests that there will be a problem supplying the minerals required for the batteries. This is pretty ridiculous, as if this is true then they have nothing to worry about. Having said that, with the advance of sodium batteries and the increasing quantity of lithium that can be captured from many sources, it is simply not true.

Point two is also false: many of these minerals are very valuable, and it is far cheaper to extract minerals from former batteries than from the ground. There is a rapidly growing industry to extract as much of these minerals as is possible for reuse. Will municipals have to be able to deal with some of these issues, of course, and they will adapt easily as they have many times in the past.

Point three is likely to be true, and is I believe the sole real reason. This move was intended to stop the electric vehicle industry before it got going in the state to protect the oil and gas industry (and the large contributions that flow to politicians from these businesses. I would argue that it makes the politicians look both stupid and corrupt.

The resolutions sponsor said that he did not really want to ban electric cars, but merely make a statement about phasing out gas powered vehicles in other states. Of course what should really be remembered, is that while the environmental catastrophe that we are facing needs an end to combustion engine cars, the cost savings are so extreme, that the number of combustion engine cars people want to by in 12 years is likely to be extremely low.

It is fact that, not only are electric cars quickly reaching similar sticker price to combustion engine cars, but even now over the lifetime of the car, they are vastly cheaper – with most people paying hundreds rather than thousands to fuel them each year.

Republicans in Wyoming are trying to squash the electric car, to save the fossil fuel industry

In December Oregan republican officials approved regulations that would ban the sale of gasoline powered cars from 2035. This is fantastic news, but it appears that it is one step forwards and one back – Wyoming republicans are looking to ban the sale of all electric vehicles, in what lawmakers are calling an effort to preserve the states fossil fuel industry.

If you live in Wyoming, make sure you do not vote for any of these men, unless you want them fighting for climate change, and against cleaner, cheaper and safer cars
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