back to article Car dealers openly beg Biden to put brakes on electric vehicle drive

Nearly 4,000 US auto dealers have signed an open letter urging the Biden administration to slow its plan to push electric vehicles (EVs) onto the populace – because demand is apparently low and the darn things just aren't selling that well.  The missive puts a dealer spin on what's been reported around America - that battery …

  1. alain williams Silver badge

    Profits or the planet ?

    It seems that the dealers are more interested in their own profits.

    1. jake Silver badge

      Re: Profits or the planet ?

      It would seem that most consumers are more savvy than the marketers had hoped.

    2. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: Profits or the planet ?

      It seems that the dealers are more interested in their own profits.

      Statement of the bleedin' obvious? Who becomes a car dealer to make a loss (other than Elon Musk, I suppose).

    3. LybsterRoy Silver badge

      Re: Profits or the planet ?

      I'm more interested in not wasting my money pursuing the pot of gold at the rainbows end that is net zero.

      In the eyes of St Greta that would make me evil.

      1. Dave314159ggggdffsdds Silver badge

        Re: Profits or the planet ?

        Greta and you are on the same side, she's just more subtle about her aims.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Profits or the planet ?

      > Profits or the planet ?

      Neither is much good without the other.

  2. ecofeco Silver badge

    Cars dealer in America?

    Car dealer in America can go play with the alligators.

    And cry me an effing river while doing so.

    1. Julz

      Re: Cars dealer in America?

      Sell direct…

      1. ecofeco Silver badge

        Re: Cars dealer in America?

        That's actually against the law in America.

        Not even joking.

        1. DS999 Silver badge

          Re: Cars dealer in America?

          Only in certain states like Texas. I guess the good old boy car dealers must have a lot of political power there. Most reasonable places allow direct sales, but with many brands not only offering warranties but covering all routine maintenance during the first 4-7 years of ownership, there needs to be a place to have that done. That place doesn't necessarily need to be one that also sells those cars though, and there's no reason they should only service certain brands. Its done that way because it has always been done that way. Probably something that started with Henry Ford.

          Chains like Car-X manage to service all brands, and can do pretty much anything - once the warranty on my Audi ran out I used to take my car to a nearby Car-X even though the dealership is only a mile further down the road. They had much cheaper labor rates, and were able to obtain the same parts when I wanted the "real" part or aftermarket "equivalent" or remanufactured parts when I wanted to save money. The dealer will only use brand new Audi original parts.

          Now that I have a newer one covered by warranty I'm back to the dealer, but if it wasn't for the fact I'm getting all scheduled maintenance and warranty repairs free (plus pickup/dropoff and a loaner car also for free) I'd be taking it to the Car-X. The dealerships have some sort of exclusive relationship with the automakers, and are getting reimbursed for that service. If my car had the equivalent of a "health plan" where I could take it wherever I wanted that within the "preferred provider network" with zero copay and elsewhere I'd have to pay a share of it I'd have no reason to go to the dealer. There are probably some really complicated repairs only they can do, but hopefully that won't be needed on a car that's still under warranty!

          Don't mean to sound like an ad for Car-X, I just used it as an example because I'm happy with this one particular shop near where I live.

          1. alain williams Silver badge

            Re: Cars dealer in America?

            Don't mean to sound like an ad for Car-X, I just used it as an example because I'm happy with this one particular shop near where I live.

            I do even better, I use a man who arrives, takes my car from my house to his lockup/... and brings it back when he is done. He knows what he is doing and is not expensive. He does not need to advertise - word of mouth and he is busy.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Cars dealer in America?

        The Manufacturers are selling direct and allow you to bypass the dealer markup and pick it up at the dealership of your choice. It's the only way to purchase the Ford Maverick hybrid. The problem is that the dealers rage about having to have vehicles with no markup on their lot and threaten to sell them if they sit for more than a day.

        1. DS999 Silver badge

          Re: Cars dealer in America?

          I can see their point of view. I wouldn't want to have my dealership used as the equivalent of an Amazon package pickup site.

          Reportedly many dealers are doing almost anything they can to steer customers away from EVs not only because of the reduced service revenue they'll derive from them but also because they fear OEMs will use the EV switch as a way of cutting the dealers out of the purchase process. So I'm skeptical of the reports about how long EVs are sitting on dealer lots versus gasoline cars - if the dealers are hiding them in the back and claiming they are problem plagued (and maybe the early EVs from major OEMs are, I'm sure there's a learning curve in their production) it is hardly surprising they are sitting on lots longer.

  3. Scoular

    Meanwhile BYD and Tesla are selling all they can produce.

    Perhaps the dealers are not offering what people want to buy.

    The dealers seem to make more money from servicing than they do from selling and electrric cars require a lot less servicing.

    1. jake Silver badge

      And then there is reality.

      "Meanwhile BYD and Tesla are selling all they can produce."

      Last time I looked, Tesla, Toyota and Ford all had a bunch of unsold EV inventory and were cutting back on production. It would seem that people who buy one don't want another, and in fact many are trading them in on ICE vehicles.

      The only BYD vehicles I am aware of here in the US are busses, and then only a trial fleet in Los Angeles. They have major reliability issues.

      1. IGotOut Silver badge

        Re: And then there is reality.

        "It would seem that people who buy one don't want another, and in fact many are trading them in on ICE vehicles."

        Citation Required

      2. jemmyww

        Re: And then there is reality.

        BYD don't have a big presence in the US which I believe is due to the import taxes. They're really popular in my country and I can see why - an EV at a good price with what looks like a pretty good build quality and features. Time will tell on reliability I suppose.

        1. MachDiamond Silver badge

          Re: And then there is reality.

          "BYD don't have a big presence in the US which I believe is due to the import taxes. "

          It's more about the scale of setting up operations to support sales and service. Some months ago when I was in California near their manufacturing facility waiting in the drive-thru at In-N-out, I spotted a BYD passenger car with manufacturer's plates. It makes me wonder if they are teasing the car or testing them for possible sale in the US. For appearances, it makes some sense that BYD management drive BYD vehicles rather than a Ford or Toyota and certainly won't be caught unconscious and on fire in a Tesla (Tesla is a big battery customer of BYD).

          I'm pondering if BYD, Ora or some other Chinese EV maker does a re-badged vehicle for a brand already selling in the US to take advantage of the infrastructure already in place. Geely owns a big chunk of Volvo and is also the maker of the London EV Black Cabs. Could Volvo dealers in the US start selling a rebadged EV made by a brand under the Geely umbrella? Imagine Elon's face if Lotus introduced an electric sports car in the US (Geely has a stake in Lotus).

      3. jamesb2147

        Re: And then there is reality.

        Tesla DOES have more inventory on lots.

        However, they are not cutting back production. They are simply planning to grow *more slowly*. That's not the same thing.

        Not as sure about Ford. Toyota? LOL - As if! There's a non-zero chance they pushed out that piece crap EV with the wheels falling off in an attempt to "prove" EV's can't replace hydrogen!

        1. MachDiamond Silver badge

          Re: And then there is reality.

          "However, they are not cutting back production. They are simply planning to grow *more slowly*. That's not the same thing."

          The nuance is lost on me. Elon pulled back on any dates for opening a plant in Mexico, but by some comments, the region doesn't have reliable sources of fresh water to support the people currently there so might not be a good place to build a large factory and being in even more people.

          If sales aren't keeping up with production, that can turn into lots of lots with cars on. At some point, the dam bursts and they either cut production, have a big sale or both. Bad things happen to an EV if they are left to the point where the battery goes flat (12v, the big pack is not active). It's not all that easy to get to the 12v battery in a Tesla to give it a jump in order to turn the car on so the traction battery can finish recharging the little one. Should the traction battery cut out due to low voltage, the car has to be accessible so it can be plugged in. Those storage lots are often "stack" parked so getting a car out of the middle requires moving a whole bunch to get to it.

      4. Snake Silver badge

        Re: And then there is reality.

        Based upon a friend's interest in EV's, and his experience in borrowing his brother's Tesla 3, one of the main reason that other manufacturer's EV models don't sell is support, not the car - read: Tesla has the best charging infrastructure whilst other manufacturers have gone with alternate charging ports (sometimes, even proprietary). He used his brother's Model 3 to come up to visit me recently and thoroughly enjoyed the trip; conversely, he said previous experiences in non-Tesla cars, depending upon the Electrify America network, would have him seriously double-think an EV purchase (because the EA network "sucked").

        With everyone adopting the Tesla port from this point forward, and other EV users being allowed to use the Supercharger network, I think a major hurtle to adoption in many locations will be overcome.

        1. blackcat Silver badge

          Re: And then there is reality.

          'Tesla has the best charging infrastructure'

          This! I can't remember the publication, I think it was NPR, who sent a journo along with Sec Granholm on her EV road trip earlier this year and the general consensus was if you have a Tesla your life will be relatively easy but if you have any other EV you have to deal with the 3rd party charging network and its basically crap. Broken chargers, multiple apps needed, broken billing systems, not enough chargers...

          Found it:

          https://www.npr.org/2023/09/10/1187224861/electric-vehicles-evs-cars-chargers-charging-energy-secretary-jennifer-granholm

          1. MachDiamond Silver badge

            Re: And then there is reality.

            "This! I can't remember the publication, I think it was NPR, who sent a journo along with Sec Granholm on her EV road trip earlier this year and the general consensus was if you have a Tesla your life will be relatively easy but if you have any other EV you have to deal with the 3rd party charging network and its basically crap. Broken chargers, multiple apps needed, broken billing systems, not enough chargers..."

            National Liberal Radio are a bunch of twits. All of the people I know with non-tesla EV's and honest reviewers on YouTube don't seen to have issues with public charging. Yes, there are a dearth of repair technicians and chargers are often down in places, but Tesla has the same issues. There's plenty of video of Tesla owners lined up on holiday weekends waiting to get to a charger on popular routes. The local petrol station in my town has pumps off-line frequently, so I might have to wait or go to the other station in town if I'm in a hurry and need to fill up. This is if I'm so low I can't just be on my way and select another station along my route since they all sell the same thing. If you own a Tesla, you might not be able to charge at a non-Tesla charger. I'm not thrilled about billing being based on the car rather than my choice at the time I charge up. I'd also like to see some affiliated chargers able to be paid for with cash so if the network is down, I could still get a charge as long as the power is on.

        2. MachDiamond Silver badge

          Re: And then there is reality.

          "Tesla has the best charging infrastructure whilst other manufacturers have gone with alternate charging ports (sometimes, even proprietary). "

          In the US, it was Tesla with the proprietary charging plug and everybody else using the CCS connector with a few ChaDeMo plugs still existing on Nissan vehicles. When the J3400 standard is finalized, the Tesla plug will be the connection standard and the CCS protocol, the communications standard. Tesla saw the writing on the wall that they weren't going to get free government money for charging stations if they didn't open theirs up to everybody. They're still trying by asking for millions to build MegaChargers along the route from Reno, NV to Austin, TX so the Semi's they use for parts deliveries can charge up along the way.

          1. dbartell@equinix.com

            Re: And then there is reality.

            Anything new is proprietary until one wins out (economically or network effect) over another: VHS vs Betamax, for example. Or going back farther, petrol powered cars vs electric cars in the early 20th century.

      5. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: And then there is reality.

        "The only BYD vehicles I am aware of here in the US are busses, and then only a trial fleet in Los Angeles. They have major reliability issues."

        BYD has a manufacturing plant in Lancaster, CA (about 100 miles north of LA) that makes busses and semi tractors. They may also make trash trucks there, but I'm not certain about that. I recall some reliability issues years ago, but I haven't heard of any recently. BYD supplies the underpinnings for London double-decker busses.

    2. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge
      Facepalm

      re: Meanwhile BYD and Tesla

      Errrrrrrr....?

      If that is the case then why has Tesla started giving away a whole load of free Supercharging with new Model 3's and Y's?

      https://insideevs.com/news/698033/tesla-six-months-free-supercharging-model-3-model-y-2023/

      1. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: re: Meanwhile BYD and Tesla

        "Facepalm

        re: Meanwhile BYD and Tesla

        Errrrrrrr....?

        If that is the case then why has Tesla started giving away a whole load of free Supercharging with new Model 3's and Y's?"

        It's a premium that they know won't cost them much. One of the biggest benefits of an EV is being able to charge up at home overnight and skipping visits to a petrol station all together. DC fast charging is important for long trips, but less so for day to day driving. How much energy is a new Tesla owner going to use in the first 6 months as they need all the hours they can get at work to pay for the huge loan they just signed for.

  4. spuck

    Interesting lines from the article

    "More Americans are buying EVs every day—with EV sales rising faster than traditional gas-powered cars."

    That's some clever wording right there. Someone at the White House must have read _How to Lie with Statistics_

    "However, dealers tend to make most of their money from service, used car sales, warranties and accessories - not new car sales."

    A half-truth here; car dealers make money from every angle they can. None of them are going to lose money on a new car sale hoping to make it up on service, warranties or accessories.

    1. MrDamage Silver badge

      Re: Interesting lines from the article

      They won't lose money, but they will sell at cost plus tax in order to shift older inventory. As you could imagine, a car yard with very static inventory does not instill confidence.

      > "That's some clever wording right there. Someone at the White House must have read _How to Lie with Statistics_"

      Or lack of comprehension from you. Everyone used to buy ICE vehicles. Now they have an option of EV. When you look at the percentage of EV vs ICE cars sold, it's obvious that the percentage of EV cars sold is growing, while the percentage of ICE cars is dropping. Ergo, EV sales are rising faster than ICE.

      1. jake Silver badge

        Re: Interesting lines from the article

        "Ergo, EV sales are rising faster than ICE."

        Starting from zero, one can only go up. Sell one car today, and four next week and the Whitehouse will breathlessly proclaim "EV sales up 400%!".

        The real question is what percentage of new car sales are EV, and what percentage ICE. Now plot that over the last ten years .... and predict the next ten.

        1. rcxb Silver badge

          Re: Interesting lines from the article

          The real question is what percentage of new car sales are EV

          And that was in the Reg article, too. So what's your complaint?

          1. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

            Re: Interesting lines from the article

            The article refers to sales of "light duty EVs and hybrids", which isn't a useful measure of EV sales alone. It also includes the obvious sweet spot for EVs, the small second car for shopping, the school run, and local pottering. Not a meaningful indication of EV sales in general.

            1. rcxb Silver badge

              Re: Interesting lines from the article

              The article refers to sales of "light duty EVs and hybrids", which isn't a useful measure of EV sales alone.

              ...and you couldn't be bothered to click the link in that same sentence to go to the source and see the breakdown of EV sales?

            2. MachDiamond Silver badge
              Joke

              Re: Interesting lines from the article

              "The article refers to sales of "light duty EVs and hybrids", which isn't a useful measure of EV sales alone."

              Everybody knows that a hybrid is a gateway to going full EV.

    2. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: Interesting lines from the article

      "None of them are going to lose money on a new car sale hoping to make it up on service, warranties or accessories."

      They may need to start thinking about that and build up their service department to handle more collision work and less on oil changes and 120 point inspections. AC Propulsion was selling some converted Scion vans and had a hybrid trailer that could be connected up to extend the range and also carry some baggage, kayaks, camping gear, etc. If that functionality was put into current production EV's, that would be something a dealer could rent as people needed them. I think they used a 1000cc motorcycle engine as the power plant. It wouldn't give unlimited range, but would add enough that somebody would be begging for a stop. I find that concept to be too clever for other companies to not be adopting it. Since towing is painful for an EV, if the trailer had a generator that could provide power to the car, it's a hybrid where you leave off the ICE part when you don't really need it. Many camper trailers already have a generator so it shouldn't be a big added expense. The power train of the EV has to be built to do it and it's not hard, I swear.

    3. StudeJeff

      Re: Interesting lines from the article

      About the only thing this White House IS good at is lying.

      1. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: Interesting lines from the article

        "About the only thing this White House IS good at is lying."

        It can be hard to tell if they are truly lying or just ignorant about technical things, the real world, etc. These people are mainly lawyers so expectations shouldn't be for them to have too broad of an education.

      2. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: Interesting lines from the article

        "About the only thing this White House IS good at is lying."

        It's not "lying", it's "spin". Totally different.

      3. timrowledge

        Re: Interesting lines from the article

        Well at least they’re not attempting to steal the country like the previous maladministration did.

  5. jgarbo

    EVs not selling?

    Yes and No. Crap EVs - GM, Ford, VW, Stellantis - not selling. Telsa's outselling all EVs (and ICEs in EU!). Chinese EVs are selling well. Lesson: EVs built from scratch sell, but battery-powered old ICE platforms do not. So, even the dumb US consumers have finally twigged.

    1. jake Silver badge

      Re: EVs not selling?

      Assumes facts not in evidence.

    2. midgepad

      Probably some of it

      Lots of Teslas round here.

      I bought an ID.3 - also made from scratch EV platform. When I first decided that'd be my next car there was a tears wait for delivery.

      By the time I changed cars Icould buy one out of the dealer, they had a couple.

      Now they've reduced production. You get oscillations.

      Nice car.

      1. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: Probably some of it

        "I bought an ID.3 - also made from scratch EV platform."

        I wish they'd bring those to the US. The ID.4 is too big and less efficient. I expect the ID.3 would sell for less as well and I'd certainly want one with limited "features".

    3. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

      Re: EVs not selling?

      Is it just me, or are Tesla fanbois becoming even more annoying than Apple ones?

      1. blackcat Silver badge

        Re: EVs not selling?

        I'll admit that I've not looked very closely at a Tesla for a good 5+ years, and I believe they have improved, but they were none too impressive on the build quality.

        ICE car makers have long since perfected the art of keeping the various fluids away from each other and manage to keep the dry bits dry and the wet bits wet.

        The upside of an ICE car is that if it starts drinking coolant it isn't leaking into a place filled with high voltages :)

        I do think that the major issue with modern cars is the software. Too many stories of failed OTA updates killing cars.

        1. Dave314159ggggdffsdds Silver badge

          Re: EVs not selling?

          Have you seen a recent Tesla? Still the same issues with panel gaps from the 80s. If they can't fix that, despite being a company that puts appearance first, what are they fixing?

          1. blackcat Silver badge

            Re: EVs not selling?

            Really? I'd hope they could have improved that. I know the Rivian build quality is legendary shite.

            The giga casting should be helping to make the chassis even more accurate.

            This isn't only related to EVs but the way they are designing modern cars is making them almost impossible to fix after even a minor fender bender. And even fixing something like a headlamp unit or rear light assembly is getting to cost over 1k. ALL the car makers are guilty of this. Everything is CAN, everything is coded to the car and even a minor fault takes out half the car CAN bus.

            1. Dave314159ggggdffsdds Silver badge

              Re: EVs not selling?

              I don't know where these myths come from. Have you actually tried? I fix stuff all the time that is supposedly impossible to fix, or vastly expensive to replace.

              1. blackcat Silver badge

                Re: EVs not selling?

                I do similar but dealers are not normally prepared to deep dive into fixing things. They just want to swap an entire module. Thankfully if you are willing to void your warranty there are companies out there which will pull modules apart and go at them with soldering irons.

                I saw a video where a rather new F150 was rendered a no-start due to a broken wire on the connector for the front seat massage/lumbar control unit. The actual fix was a few $ (after diagnosis) but you know the dealer would have swapped the seat as the loom is integral.

              2. MachDiamond Silver badge

                Re: EVs not selling?

                "I don't know where these myths come from. Have you actually tried? I fix stuff all the time that is supposedly impossible to fix, or vastly expensive to replace."

                The proper take would be that many new things are 'uneconomic' to fix rather than impossible. I fix lots of things that I pick up cheap and sell on, but I don't do repairs as a business. I get the choice of working on a thing or using parts of it to fix something else or just separating the materials for recycling.

                If it requires peeling back the fabric of a car so a casting can be heated up sufficiently that welding on it will work, it's unlikely to be economic to repair and insurance companies will just write them off and charge all other owners more money the next time they can increase premiums. On the other hand, it might make sense for ME to do the work in my workshop and flog the car off with all of the undetected flaws I didn't find to somebody else.

            2. Lurko

              Re: EVs not selling?

              "the way they are designing modern cars is making them almost impossible to fix after even a minor fender bender. And even fixing something like a headlamp unit or rear light assembly is getting to cost over 1k."

              From what I've observed, competent repair centres are as good with the latest cars as older ones. And whilst larger sub-assemblies, Canbus and the like increase repair costs, they've substantially simplified manufacturing and lowered the real terms cost of making the cars in the first place (like for like, before emissions and safety changes). The cost of repair is always exorbitant, because the process is manual, there's no volume or automatable process - in fact, for a chunky accident repair it's possible there's more labour hours in the repair than were used in assembling the entire vehicle at the factory. As manufacturing becomes more automated and the design more efficient, that equation continues to weight up on the repair side.

          2. timrowledge

            Re: EVs not selling?

            Funny; there a *lot* of Tesla’s of various vintage around here and they all seem to make their owners pretty happy. I’ve never yet seen one with dodgy panel gaps, or who pay wheels, or any other problem beyond being a bit expensive up front. And even that is reducing.

      2. David Hicklin Bronze badge

        Re: EVs not selling?

        > s it just me, or are Tesla fanbois becoming even more annoying than Apple ones?

        Not just the fanbois, the drivers are displacing the Audi/BMW etc drivers on the roads.........

      3. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: EVs not selling?

        Indeed. As if we needed another reason not to buy Tesla.

        (I wouldn't anyway, because I think they're overpriced and ugly, and I won't buy a car with a touchscreen. And an EV is useless to me because it doesn't fit my use case.)

      4. timrowledge

        Re: EVs not selling?

        No it’s not just you. There are lots of people being just as dumb.

    4. Casca Silver badge

      Re: EVs not selling?

      LMAO, tesla is the biggest crap car there is.

      1. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: EVs not selling?

        "LMAO, tesla is the biggest crap car there is."

        The auto survey companies rank them rather on the low end of the scale. Just search for "Yugo" and go one up from that.

  6. rcxb Silver badge

    Dealerships are parasites, adding no value while taking a big cut of car sales. They have lobbied many state governments successfully to make independent dealerships a legal requirement, enshrining in law their rent-seeking position in the new car market, otherwise they would have gone extinct long ago.

    They're overplaying their hand, here. If they don't quickly adapt to selling more EVs, they'll find automotive companies bypassing them, as they enter a death-spiral, just linger around for a time and fighting each other for the last few scraps of an ever shrinking ICE vehicle market.

    In fact, I'd say they are a threat to national security... Inhibiting the uptake of EVs causes greater reliance on imported foreign oil supplies, much of which is supplied by sometimes-hostile nations.

    If Trump or any other Republican gets elected next year, they'll very likely get their way, and EV adoption will be delayed by years.

    1. ecofeco Silver badge

      LOL! It's the 1980s all over again.

      And even after passing very stringent and restrictive import tariffs, the Japanese STILL kicked U.S. car makers ass in the end.

      1. NeilPost Silver badge

        Yup- the high volume of Subaru, Honda, Toyota, Nissan on the roads is self-evident. They just brought their exceptionally high vehicle engineering standards to the USA - Subaru factory in Indiana for example..

        https://media.subaru.com/pressrelease/2012/259/subaru-indiana-automotive-produces-its-7-millionth-vehicle#:~:text=Subaru%20of%20Indiana%20Automotive%20Inc,quality%2C%20safety%20and%20environmental%20stewardship.

        https://www.raffertysubaru.com/blog/2020/august/5/subaru-s-zero-waste-manufacturing-plant.htm#:~:text=The%20manufacturing%20plant%20in%20Lafayette,Subaru%20Impreza%2C%20and%20Subaru%20Ascent.

        1. blackcat Silver badge

          Worth a watch

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZjxZ2Eh9GrA

          The US car industry, a bit like the UK car industry at the same time, was UTTER CRAP. Quality control was something you did to the tin of quality street, not the car.

          1. vtcodger Silver badge

            I can't imagine why you were downvoted. In point of fact, US cars in 1980 were basically the same cars as the US cars of the 1950s without the tailfins, portholes and with automatic transmissions that were less prone to spontaneously shift into low gear at 60mph. They were notorious for poor reliability, awful gas mileage, and, in some cases, a tendency to shed a few parts as soon as they were driven a few miles from the dealer's lot.

            When an American carmaker -- Ford -- finally put together a competitive vehicle with decent build quality at a not outrageous price -- the 1984 Taurus/Sable -- it quickly became the best selling car in the US. We inherited one of those in the 1990s. Probably not a car I would have bought. A bit ponderous for my taste. But a perfectly reasonable vehicle and we'd probably have driven it for many more years had a pickup truck not decided to make a left turn through the space it occupied. Vastly better in pretty much all respects than the early 1980s Ford station wagon bought at the insistence of my wife to meet the needs of our family.

            1. MachDiamond Silver badge

              "When an American carmaker -- Ford -- finally put together a competitive vehicle with decent build quality at a not outrageous price -- the 1984 Taurus/Sable"

              The Taurus was developed as a fleet car. Since those go to government entities, they often must have longer warranties and support periods. With so many people in government service, word got out that it was a solid car, a bit thin on 'features', but comfortable to drive and reliable. That sparked the uptick in retail sales. The Sable was an up-featured version sold under the Mercury brand name and not quite as good of a value for the money.

              I'm surprised that nobody seems to be building an EV for the fleet market. No bells and whistles, just a reliable EV that's easy to support. It should be the government that's putting our money where their mouth is when it comes to EV's. I can think of all sorts of things such as card access and downloadable logs that save agencies loads of money. Since government workers are only going to do "eight and skate", there's plenty of time to slowly charge the cars back up each night.

            2. Anonymous Coward
              Anonymous Coward

              I remember the later version of the Taurus, from the early 90s. What a dreadful car! We were always warned that when we arrived in the US if the rental company offered a Taurus we should always refuse and ask for a Japanese or European car instead. It had handling that was worse than my 1970s Morris Marina, when you went round corners you expected the door handles to scrape on the ground!

              Even the US built Ford Focus was crap compared to the European one, cheap plastics & rubbish finish.

              1. MachDiamond Silver badge

                "I remember the later version of the Taurus, from the early 90s. What a dreadful car! "

                I doubt Ford spent a lot of time tuning the performance and handling. It was for fleets where cost, reliability and serviceability were more important. It's easy to see why they'd be taken up by the car hire companies.

                1. rcxb Silver badge

                  cost, reliability and serviceability were more important

                  Years back, a friend bought an old used Taurus, and asked me to check it out.

                  It had a plastic (likely ABS) splitter on the coolant system/hose next to the battery, with a very small takeoff going to a smaller hose. This looks like it: https://images.carid.com/gates/products/22337.jpg

                  I bumped said smaller hose, which promptly broke the small plastic bell-end and sprayed me with antifreeze. That's not what I call reliable or even particularly serviceable.

                  This came on the heels of having owned 3 Fords over the prior decade or so, which were all maintenance burdens. That Taurus nonsense convinced me to thereafter switch to buying GM vehicles, where I've never seen any such stupid and fragile powertrain components. Have had an extremely good tract record with GM vehicles since. (Better than Toyota and Honda vehicles owners I know, though of course it's quite a small sample size.)

      2. NXM Silver badge

        rust heaps Vs nothing

        In the 1980's there were loads of Japanese cars in the UK even though the quality was less than perfect, and almost no American ones. The US auto companies basically refused to make right hand drive cars, so you couldn't buy them. They only started to sell here when they got desperate, and even then hardly anyone wanted gas guzzling chrome mountains.

        1. blackcat Silver badge

          Re: rust heaps Vs nothing

          Didn't AMC do a right hand drive version of the Pacer (I think, the 'Wayne's world' car) but it still had the asymmetric doors in the LHD arrangement.

  7. IGotOut Silver badge

    From the inside...

    EV is rising massively.

    I work in prototype both ICE and EV "engines" for nearly every high end manufacturer in Europe and the US (and the odd Chinese), think cars that cost over £70,000.

    The shift over the last 12 months has been dramatic (remember this is prototype, so think on the road in 12 months).

    The new ICE engines are tiny in comparison as they are designed as hybrid powertrains, the legacy 8 & 12 cylinders are running out their order books, the Motorsport parts are completely changing and the EV prototyping has increased 100x.

    The EV part is interesting as they are created using rapid prototyping techniques, so, as an example, one major high end customer is on the 13th redesign of the motor housing alone, something would never happened with ICE as the investment required would be crippling.

    1. NeilPost Silver badge

      Re: From the inside...

      They are still way too expensive though.

      The MG4 (British brand, made in China) which is excellent still from GBP£28.4K as about the bottom of the pile for a decent BeV

      1. CountCadaver Silver badge

        Re: From the inside...

        its not been a "British" brand for well over a decade now

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SAIC_Motor own what was MG Rover after taking over Nanjing who bought MG Rover in 2007

        1. blackcat Silver badge

          Re: From the inside...

          The sad part is that they are probably going to make better quality cars than any British MGs in the last 40 years.

    2. LybsterRoy Silver badge

      Re: From the inside...

      -- they are created using rapid prototyping techniques, so, as an example, one major high end customer is on the 13th redesign of the motor housing alone --

      OMFG that sounds scary. I'd much prefer them to stop and think a bit so that when the car is on the road it isn't as disastrous as a lot of software projects are using the same methods.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: From the inside...

        I think the difference is that with the old design methods for ICE engines and the sheer size and interaction of the parts, it cost so much to make changes and iterate the design that they stopped when it was "good enough". In the case of EVs, it's much cheaper to redesign, iterate and test, and with range being one of the bigger selling points, for both economic and performance reasons, worthwhile going the extra mile beyond "good enough". At some point, you have to test the design in real life to check if all the computer modelling actually works.

    3. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: From the inside...

      "The EV part is interesting as they are created using rapid prototyping techniques, so, as an example, one major high end customer is on the 13th redesign of the motor housing alone, something would never happened with ICE as the investment required would be crippling."

      That's also the downside of rapid prototyping, less proper work done before making a part.

      If I'm making photos with my digital camera, I can just spray and pray. When I'm shooting with my 4x5 technical camera, I'm being very methodical about composition, focus and exposure since the film and processing costs real money. It can also take a whole day to print something on my 3D printer if it doesn't go wrong so I spend more time making sure everything is doubled checked before invoking the print button.

      1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: From the inside...

        While I agree with your comparisons, I don't necessarily agree with how you describe "rapid prototyping". The implementation of rapid prototyping and how it's done has a huge bearing on the quality of the product.

        Someone described ULA/NASA and SpaceX development process as not only different , but with different outcomes. ULA/NASA go big, expensive and over designed leading to a much more likely first-time success at the the cost of usually being over-budget and overdue. Musk goes fast, tests out the design by launching it, then going back with lessons on what worked, what didn't work and making changes.

        Neither process is great for a mass market consumer product, but something in between, still "fast prototyping" compared to traditional methods, especially with Evs much lower complexity compared to ICE vehicles. Changing the "drive shaft" in an electric motor is pretty simple compared to changing a crank shaft design and pretty much all of the rest of the engine components to compensate for that change, for an extreme example, either of which you may find can be optimised after some real world testing outside of the "perfect" world of the computer model.

        1. MachDiamond Silver badge

          Re: From the inside...

          "Musk goes fast, tests out the design by launching it, then going back with lessons on what worked, what didn't work and making changes.

          "

          You forget to add that SpaceX misses deadlines as well. They were four years late in delivering a qualified capsule to haul astronauts to and from ISS. They are also only slightly cheaper than the Russians.

  8. Winkypop Silver badge
    Flame

    It’s not just the “mark ups”

    It’s the “melt-downs” that really bother (stop) me.

    1. midgepad

      Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

      You'll want to avoid ICEVs then.

      They are 19 times as likely to catch fire, and burn with similar power outputs of 2-16MW at peak.

      1. NeilPost Silver badge

        Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

        Evidence ….. v’s vehicles carrying a tank of flammable petrol?

        1. YetAnotherLocksmith Silver badge

          Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

          That's his point. That tank of fuel carries the same sort of entry as the battery pack, and it's more likely to catch fire.

          Adjusted for numbers though, I think it's a fairly close run thing when it comes to the *rate* of car fires.

          1. MatthewSt

            Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

            Depends where you get your numbers from: https://www.theguardian.com/business/2023/nov/20/do-electric-cars-pose-a-greater-fire-risk-than-petrol-or-diesel-vehicles

            Stats show per car on the road it's 20 times more likely for an ICE to catch fire than an EV.

            1. blackcat Silver badge

              Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

              Its unlikely that those fires are started by the actual fuel. Most car fires are from crappy wiring, usually under the dash. Once EVs get old enough we will likely see more of this.

              Some caveats on those figures, the total number of vehicle fires includes those burnt by arson. They also recorded an alarming number of escooter and ebike fires.

              1. Anonymous Coward
                Anonymous Coward

                Just another ranter

                Trust blackcat: tl;dr EVs are bad, renewable is bad, fuel is good and nuclear is even better.

                1. blackcat Silver badge

                  Re: Just another ranter

                  I'm looking forward to having a breeder reactor in my car :)

                  1. Anonymous Coward
              2. vtcodger Silver badge

                Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

                "Once EVs get old enough we will likely see more of this."

                Possibly. Or not. Gasoline fires are relatively easy to start. Albeit nowhere near as much so as Hollywood would have you believe. They are also relatively easy to extinguish. Cut off access to oxygen and they will go out.

                OTOH, Lion battery fires require heating at least one cell beyond 450C. Not so easy to do. Once started, they are likely to keep on burning. Cutting off Oxygen has little affect since the "fire" is fueled not by oxygen but by spontaneous discharge of the cell(s). The only(?) ways to put them out are to either break up the battery, isolate the burning cells and let them burn out. Or to somehow cool the whole mass of the battery below 450C.

                My GUESS is that EV battery fires are/will be caused mostly by battery manufacturing defects or physical damage from collisions. And that they will decrease over time as battery designs improve.

                In the meantime, I possibly wouldn't park an EV next to anything I valued. And I'd expect to pay a LOT for collision insurance because repair shops will likely refuse to repair any damage that might have damaged the battery. And to charge a lot for any work they do. Because THEIR insurance costs will likely go through the roof if they choose to work on EVs.

                (NOTE: Not alll EVs are a LIon fire hazard. Older Prius hybrids used NiMH batteries that don't spontaneously "burn")

                1. vtcodger Silver badge

                  Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

                  Correctio: 400C, not 450C.

            2. John H Woods Silver badge

              Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

              There are 300 car fires a day in the UK, 200 deliberate, 100 accidental.

              ICE car fires are so common they don't make (even the local) news. So it's hard to get a 'feel' of how statistically significant the "EV catches fire" stories are.

              1. blackcat Silver badge

                Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

                Blimey 2:1 in favour of arson??

                Now are these fires total loss burnt out shell type fires or 'something in the engine bay is a bit black and crispy now' minor fires?

                1. Anonymous Coward
                  Anonymous Coward

                  Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

                  Now are these fires total loss burnt out shell type fires or 'something in the engine bay is a bit black and crispy now' minor fires?

                  Total loss criminal destruction: vandalism, insurance fraud, or to hide evidence.

                2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge
                  Flame

                  Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

                  I wonder if those stats include the Luton Airport car park fire(*)? That 'd skew them rather wildly :-)

                  *Apologies if any readers were affected by that, too soon?

            3. Phil O'Sophical Silver badge

              Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

              20 times more likely for an ICE to catch fire than an EV.

              I'd like to see the figures adjusted for age. Most car fires I've seen are in older cars which are poorly maintained, so you get turbo lubrication failures, electrical fires, or other worn-out components giving up the ghost. EVs are too new to show those sorts of failure modes.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Facepalm

        Re: It’s not just the “mark ups”

        They are 19 times as likely to catch fire

        Bullshit. Someone's been watching too many Youtube videos and social media posts of LPG/CNG cars blowing up, titled "EV Car Blows Up!!!!!"

        Muppet.

  9. Mr.Nobody

    I won't be buying one

    until someone makes one that doesn't require a fondleslab in the dashboard to turn on the heated seats, or anything else for that matter.

    1. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

      Re: I won't be buying one

      There are many EV's that are more like ICE's when it comes to user controls. It is really only the Muskmobiles that have gone silly with the minimalism. Apparently, the indicator stalk is too expensive so it has been ditched... not that Tesla drivers even know that they exist so it sort of makes sense.

      In my Kia EV-6-GT, the controls for the seat heating/cooling and steering wheel heating are on the centre console. I don't have to use the touchscreen most trips unless it is to use the satnav.

      1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: I won't be buying one

        For me, any touchscreen is too much touchscreen.

        1. vtcodger Silver badge

          Re: I won't be buying one

          "For me, any touchscreen is too much touchscreen."

          I'm inclined to agree. However, I bought a Garmin SatNav device many years ago, that I still use from time to time. I usually mount it in the upper left corner of the windshield. It needs a tap to switch between displaying time_to_go and arrival time. My experience has been that it is far less annoying to view/use its touch controls while driving than touch controls on the center entertainment console. Maybe "heads-up" is really works better than down and right.

      2. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: I won't be buying one

        "In my Kia EV-6-GT, the controls for the seat heating/cooling and steering wheel heating are on the centre console. I don't have to use the touchscreen most trips unless it is to use the satnav."

        Yes, but you still have the silly door handles that extend/retract.

    2. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: I won't be buying one

      "until someone makes one that doesn't require a fondleslab in the dashboard to turn on the heated seats"

      The first Kia eNiro and Kona EV's are very 'trad' (traditional) when it comes to controls. Good luck finding a used one.

  10. Kevin McMurtrie Silver badge

    EVs sitting idle on lots?

    Maybe people are waiting for stealerships to stop marking up over MSRP. MSRP already includes a nice dealership profit.

    Sure, no more $99 oil change specials where the oil is topped off but not changed. Can't charge $60 for a mysterious fuel system treatment either. They can still do CV boot, brake rotors, and shock absorber scams.

    1. David Hicklin Bronze badge

      Re: EVs sitting idle on lots?

      > They can still do CV boot, brake rotors, and shock absorber scams.

      You missed the aircon clean and brake fluid flush

      1. MachDiamond Silver badge

        Re: EVs sitting idle on lots?

        "> They can still do CV boot, brake rotors, and shock absorber scams.

        You missed the aircon clean and brake fluid flush"

        Nitrogen in the tyres.

    2. Dave314159ggggdffsdds Silver badge

      Re: EVs sitting idle on lots?

      The more enterprising scammers are offering 'battery conditioning' and other similar 'services' now.

  11. Persona

    Who wants a second hand EV?

    New EV sales are doing quite well. It's the second hand market that is dire. Prices have been falling month on month.

    https://fortune.com/2023/11/28/used-ev-prices-plunge-october-2023/

    Other evidence suggests the price fall may be bottoming out but as more and more second hand EV's become available further price drops are inevitable to match supply and demand. This means that depreciation on new EV's is huge. This will feed through into the new car sales market as few people want to buy heavily depreciating cars, especially once they have already felt the sting of a huge depreciation loss on an EV.

    1. Lurko

      Re: Who wants a second hand EV?

      "as few people want to buy heavily depreciating cars, especially once they have already felt the sting of a huge depreciation loss on an EV"

      Few people (<10% in the UK) buy a new car outright, so at the moment first time EV "buyers" are not exposed to depreciation risk - that sits with the finance company. The finance company make a guess as to depreciation, if they've got it right then the costs of depreciation are already in the lease charge, everybody is happy. If the lease companies have under-estimated the depreciation, then they lose (boohoo, the banks don't make as much profit).

      The lease costs to new owners might go up, not based on previous losses but on the estimate for depreciation of a new EV over the next four years at the time the customer orders it. So any initial weakness in the EV resale market doesn't really affect the current owners, and won't affect new EV lease costs unless the lease companies identify reasons for EVs to have higher depreciation in future. Obviously there are those potential risks, especially around battery safety and longevity (including the impact on resale prices when the battery goes out of warranty at 5-10 years), but that's inevitable for a new technology, especially one picked as a winner by governments.

      1. Captain_Cretin

        Re: Who wants a second hand EV?

        S/H prices are dropping, because who wants to buy a s/h EV for $45K, when you can buy a brand new Tesla for less?

        Nearly all of the legacy car makers have had to drastically cut the cost of their new EVs to compensate for that; with many UK prices dropping by up to 50% on delivery mileage EVs over the last 2 months.

        Some new EVs are now priced below that of their ICE cousins.

    2. SundogUK Silver badge

      Re: Who wants a second hand EV?

      The second hand market is going to be the big problem for EVs. In the UK there is still a huge market for 5 or 10+ year old vehicles, which is going to disappear for EVs - the battery will be knackered and need replacing, doubling or tripling the cost of buying second hand.

      1. YetAnotherLocksmith Silver badge

        Re: Who wants a second hand EV?

        I think the issue there is simply that they never actually get cheap enough. You can (or could) buy a diesel or petrol car for £500 or £1k quite easily. I just can't see that ever happening for a car with £3k worth of scrap lithium and copper inside it!

        1. Col_Panek

          Re: Who wants a second hand EV?

          Does a £500 diesel car actually run? In the USA you'd be lucky if it was $5000.

      2. Matt GS

        Re: Who wants a second hand EV?

        The battery life seems to be much better than previously thought.

        1. MachDiamond Silver badge

          Re: Who wants a second hand EV?

          "The battery life seems to be much better than previously thought."

          Even after a pack has lost 1/3 of its capacity, it's still worth money. A 60kWh pack that's down to 40kWh isn't great in a car, but that's loads of capacity to power a home for a few days.

    3. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: Who wants a second hand EV?

      "New EV sales are doing quite well. It's the second hand market that is dire. Prices have been falling month on month."

      There's not a lot in the US worth buying used right now and not likely much for some time. I was on the brink of getting a job where they had free EV charging and was looking at 1st gen Nissan Leafs. They get around 70miles of range by the time they hit the used market, but they are also dirt cheap. I figured I'd get one to commute to work and back (40miles both ways) and save my ICEV for longer trips. Free fuel and lower maintenance costs would have more than offset buying a second car.

  12. Marty McFly Silver badge

    The problem is unchanged

    It is not body fitment, quality, comfort, features, or even horsepower.

    The problem is, and always has been, energy storage and energy replenishment. Right now ICE vehicles are capable of storing a lot more energy than EVs, and can completely refill that energy storage in a matter of minutes. EVs cannot do that. Yes, I am talking about batteries vs. gas tanks.

    The minute a manufacturer produces an EV that can go the same distance as an ICE vehicle, AND be recharged in the same amount of time it takes to get a soda at a convenience store, THEN you will see the mass migration to EVs.

    This will likely mean something other than batteries. Batteries have not changed. Still an electrode, cathode, electrolyte, and an electro-chemical reaction. Sure, they are better. Despite all the research being put in to batteries, they will never be able to replace the energy storage & replenishment capabilities of ICE powered vehicles. A breakthrough is needed.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The problem is unchanged

      I agree completely.

      But I think realistically what will happen is that the range will increase to more than you can drive in a day. You have to sleep eventually and the car can recharge while you are doing so.

    2. Col_Panek

      Re: The problem is unchanged

      "The minute a manufacturer produces an EV that can go the same distance as an ICE vehicle, AND be recharged in the same amount of time it takes to get a soda at a convenience store, THEN you will see the mass migration to EVs."

      There will always be those who swear they pull a boat for 1000 miles without stopping, uphill, and they're allergic to electrons. What they really mean is, it's the Democrats forcing everyone to buy efficient, non-polluting cars so therefore they are evil.

    3. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: The problem is unchanged

      "Right now ICE vehicles are capable of storing a lot more energy than EVs, and can completely refill that energy storage in a matter of minutes. EVs cannot do that. Yes, I am talking about batteries vs. gas tanks."

      If you had to visit a petrol station every day, there would need to be far more petrol stations than currently exist. With an EV and home charging, the shorter range isn't an issue since most people aren't driving further than the maximum range on many EV's. This is why ICE cars are fitted with a petrol tank that allows the car to go hundreds of miles between refueling stops.

      Considering the electricity used to refine crude oil into petrol, my current ICE gains 5 miles of range beyond the electrical energy used to refine 1 gallon vs. a moderately efficient EV. The problem right now is I have no ROI if I buy an EV and do most of my travel with it over keeping my current car maintained and fueled. But while I have more maximum range right now, I'm being way less energy efficient on the whole. To max out at 250 miles vs 400 isn't an issue for me. I only make a trip long enough to have to charge up twice in a day about every other year.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The problem is unchanged

      The minute a manufacturer produces an EV that can go the same distance as an ICE vehicle, AND be recharged in the same amount of time it takes to get a soda at a convenience store, THEN you will see the mass migration to EVs.

      You're missing the third key metric "for the same or lower price than a tankful of gas".

    5. timrowledge

      Re: The problem is unchanged

      “But I have to drive 2500 miles each way to work, twice a day because I work split shifts, towing a 42ft boat made of Iridium”

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Whenever cars are mention on El Reg...

    ... the comments section always reminds me of:

    SniffPetrol's 'Ask A Total Prick From An Internet Forum' column.

  14. Tron Silver badge

    American ULEZs incoming (in Democrat states).

    Ironically, American homes typically have way more space for charging than European or Japanese ones.

    The problem is that there are no cheap second-hand EVs. You can bag a viable runaround for under £1000 as long as you don't live near a ULEZ/-border, where the cost of using it would be more than the cost of buying it.

    EVs are still going to revolutionise car use: By increasing the amount of nicely refurbished second-hand machines. And maybe by seeing people actually move house and jobs to avoid ULEZ/CAZ/WhateverZ fees.

    1. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: American ULEZs incoming (in Democrat states).

      "Ironically, American homes typically have way more space for charging than European or Japanese ones."

      It's a shock to go from the US where nearly every home will have a garage to Blighty where it's far less common even in the country. Are there no men? My 'garage' doesn't have enough room for a car right now since it's mainly 'workshop'. I've found there is a huge difference of opinion between men and women when it comes to the ratio of garage/workshop to living space. Since I'm not being bossed around currently, my home is heavily skewed towards the 'workshop' end of the scale.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: American ULEZs incoming (in Democrat states).

        So it's an Incel nest then?

    2. Col_Panek

      Re: American ULEZs incoming (in Democrat states).

      Here in New York, they spread car solvent on the roads from November to April (Syracuse is nicknamed the Salt City) so putting a lot of money into a steel car is a bad proposition. The junkyards are full of good drivetrains surrounded by crumbling Ferrous oxide.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: American ULEZs incoming (in Democrat states).

        In the UK we learned how to make cars that didn't rot many decades ago.

        Even the Italians seem to have it figured out now.

    3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: American ULEZs incoming (in Democrat states).

      "EVs are still going to revolutionise car use: By increasing the amount of nicely refurbished second-hand machines. And maybe by seeing people actually move house and jobs to avoid ULEZ/CAZ/WhateverZ fees."

      Only, I suspect, in the short term. There will be more and more CAZ's, either because towns and cities see an opportunity to raise cash "for better public transport" or because government regulations on clean air force them to do so. And as the income dries up because people change to hybrids, newer cleaner ICE's etc, those regulations will become more stringent. Currently they don't apply at all on the "strategic road network", but Greater Manchester are lobbying to apply their CAZ to the M60 and other motorways within their urban area. In Scotland, I think Glasgow may have done this already (and include private cars too) and in Wales, Newport have a fixed 50mph limit on the motorway where it passes through the city and are looking at a CAZ which will include the motorway. The "feature creep" has already started.

  15. PapaPepe
    Boffin

    Brilliant engineering...

    To turn each wheel with an individually synchro-controlled electric motor was one of the most brilliant ideas in the history of automotive engineering.

    To build a practical piece of equipment based on that idea, another related problem had to be solved: how to transfer the energy from a stationary terrestrial infrastructure all the way to the clamps on each one of those electrical motors.

    To perform a slow electro-chemical reaction in-situ on a device that weights almost one half of the of the mass of the moving platform itself, and which does not decrease as the energy is consumed is probably the most idiotic idea in the whole history of engineering.

  16. Captain_Cretin

    KIA EV9

    Since it was specifically named; and I already know the answer...

    US dealers are trying to make a 100% markup on the EV9; over European/UK pricing; almost exactly doubling the price.

    A guy on one of the forums I frequent posted an invoice for a new (ICE) Dodge he’d ordered; the dealer had added $135K "in high demand" charge on top of the $65k asking price; and this before calculating taxes and the spurious extra charges they like to add to a new car price.

    Pre-covid, these cars were around $45K OTR.

    1. MachDiamond Silver badge

      Re: KIA EV9

      "A guy on one of the forums I frequent posted an invoice for a new (ICE) Dodge he’d ordered; the dealer had added $135K "in high demand" charge on top of the $65k asking price;"

      This is where you learn to walk away. The depreciation on that $135K is instant and on top of the depreciation on the $65k that happens as soon as the paperwork is signed and what you bought is officially a "used" car.

      This sort of thing might be an excellent test for maturity. Once you can turn your back on something you really really want due to the cost, that's a point where the rational portion of your brain has balanced out the "Id".

  17. neutronJK

    Just split the difference. Let the independent dealers sell gas vehicles and let the automakers themselves set up stores and sell EVs. Everybody is happy then.

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