Americans seem hesitant to purchase EVs

Summary of the article: EVs don’t meet the expectations of buyers, so they aren’t buying them.

High prices, sure, but factor in rapid depreciation, unknown battery life, having to adapt your driving to find (21% broken) chargers, paying $2000 for a home charger and the big one…EVs still can’t do all the things a comparable ICE or Hybrid will do. Exponential offerings, linear sales growth.


Between its HV mode and its EV mode, my PHEV has a highway range of at least 550 miles. Some day, EVs may be able to achieve that type of range, but at this point, it’s not likely that a “popularly-priced” EV will do it anytime soon. Maybe a Lucid Air Grand Touring sedan could do it soon, but at a base price of $115k, I don’t see this as something viable for the masses.

Three or four years ago, I used to count the number of Teslas that I would see on my weekly drive to Princeton. At first I might see a total of 5 or 6 on that 32 mile round-trip. Nowadays, the Teslas are so numerous that it would be ridiculously distracting to try to count them.

In the parking lot for the Costco near Princeton, it has gotten to the point where it appears that Teslas now account for ~25% of the cars parked there. Meanwhile, the Tesla storage lot a few miles away currently has (by my estimate) more than 200 cars sitting there. I think that Tesla (and other EV makers) may have saturated the market, due to the impracticality of those vehicles for those who live in apartments or Condos, and/or those who require a very long range from their vehicle.

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I don’t understand why a plug in hybrid would have any range constraint. Do you mean it will go 550 miles without needing to stop for filling up the gas tank when starting w/a fully charged battery?

Everything has its limits, George.
My practice–with a fully-charged battery–is to operate in EV mode until just before I hit the interstate. A couple of miles before I get to the interstate, I engage HV mode in order to get the gas engine running before I have to accelerate onto the expressway.

Once I am on the interstate, the vehicle’s software determines whether the gas engine or the battery is the motive source at any point, and this will vary considerably, depending on traffic conditions. (If I encounter congestion, it will operate mostly on battery. When I am cruising at high speed, it will operate on the gas engine–except if I am coasting or going downhill–thus yielding MPGs ranging anywhere from 40-70.) Then, when I exit from the interstate, I engage EV mode again.

So, while it is possible that I could eke-out more than 550 miles, I am stating the conservative case, rather than claiming the high numbers that are–theoretically–possible.

I also think part of it is people like me and others are scared of the battery failing, my brother knows a lady that has a (according to him) very nice looking EV (not known what kind) and he asked why she just leaves it in the garage, she said cause it needs the battery and it is around $15K… again, 2nd hand info, but not the 1st time I have heard that…

I am not going to pay for a brand new vehicle for a few reasons and being on distality retirement way younger than I ever thought, money is a big reason lol… So buying a used EV with some age and miles on it, not knowing that you might have to drop another $10-15K into it for a battery is a little scary to a lot of people… Since over half the population in the US lives paycheck to paycheck not that many people have that kind of money…


And your solution to continue driving is to fill up the gas tank at any of the tens of thousands of gas stations across North America. No searching for EV chargers and no long wait times.

But you get the ability to get cheap recharges at home.

EV sales in states with high population density and close proximity will generally mean lots of chargers. Living in a low density state like Wyoming, Texas or Kansas is a different problem. EVs don’t work in Texas - a state that takes 1.5 days to drive across with loooong stretches of nothing.

That sums it up pretty well, at least for me.
As to population density, NJ has the highest density of any state, and–as I mentioned–EV sales have been very good… at least in my part of the state. I am seeing more Rivian pickups on a regular basis, and I have seen a few of those incredibly sleek Lucid Air sedans. But, my theory–which could be incorrect–is that the market for EVs in this area has become saturated.

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This right here is what kills the value of a used EV. The risk is real even if the reality is not that bad. If you lease your EV, the monthly payment will reflect that depreciation. If you finance it, you will be upside down for a very long time.

Battery size. Hybrid batteries are far smaller (1/10 the size) than an EV battery.

Yeah for all of the above. If I’m 200 miles from home or even 50, I’m not likely to take advantage of a home charger. We have a charger downtown, so I would drive five miles to plug it in, the go walk around or have drink or something and drive it home again. Just not practical for many people.

The market will decide, not the government. Like I said, I’ve never talked to anyone that said they got a bad deal on a car, but still people that seem to replace electrics with ice again saying just not worth the hassle.

I believe that this thought process, although it has some basis in reality, is way overblown and just indicative of people’s resistance to change. You buy a conventional vehicle and don’t think about what you’re going to do when the car is 8 years old and needs a $7000 transmission or an $8000 head gasket job.

Friends of mine just had to replace the water pump in their SUV for $3000, but nobody is screaming that they’re afraid to buy an Explorer. My wife’s car has a thermostat sticking open. That’s a $1000 ticket at the repair shop, but I don’t hear people saying they’ll never buy a Cadillac.

Also, many people are not aware of the cost savings of driving an electric or hybrid. 200K miles on a set of brake pads, no more $100 oil changes every 3 months, sounds pretty good to me.


In my area (Central VA) people aren’t too shy about electrics. They’re all over the place a continue to grow in popularity.

There is some range anxiety among many, but most people’s daily driving habits don’t warrant that. On a day to day basic, most people just don’t drive that far.

That said, right now I would be happy to have an EV, but would not rely solely on a 100% EV just because I do need to take the occasional 400+mile road trip. In that case, for right now, I’ll stick with an ICE, especially if it’s a hybrid.

I am not a fan of penalties for doing what I have to do to operate something I bought… I am still a bit peeved about the radios that came in our '19 Toyota and '20 Honda. They both operate with a thumb drive, blue tooth, and most important, AM and FM… But I am sure that that the radios cost a bit more to receive SiriusXM. I do not need the features that it offers.

The following two features are in the Tesla Firmware and I do not know if they have been implemented yet, perhaps Tesla is just waiting for some more vehicle sales.

But I digress, I have read that Tesla has features concerning the use of their charging stations… Since it takes appreciably longer for the battery to charge above 80%, Tesla has a surcharge on that extra 20% because the vehicle is taking so much longer to charge and Tesla does not want you monopolizing the charger…

Also, they charge an idle fee if your Tesla is hooked up and not charging so if you want to avoid that additional surcharge, then you had better hang out while your vehicle is charging and remove it as soon as it has finished charging… And if the chargers are busy, the surcharge doubles…

It’s bad enough that some gas stations have two prices for their product. One price for credit card sales and few cents cheaper if you pay with cash… I understand that the card companies charge upwards of 5% to the venders for the use of their cards, but I have never seen fifteen-cents off a $3.00 gallon of gas, perhaps three-cents…

I see 500 to 550 miles of driving range being banded about like it’s a good thing. Who, except a long haul trucker and probably not even them would want to drive that distance without a break (pit stop for bathroom break, a stretch of the old legs, a beverage, etc…)?


My folks are aware they at some point could have the hybrid battery in the 2010 Prius but replacements from aftermarket sources are about $2000 which is less adjusted for inflation than we spent in the mid 90’s on a transmission rebuild for one of our vehicles. Our mechanics aren’t counting on doing a brake job on the Prius any time soon either. Some of the EV owner’s I know lease instead of buy outright. The hybrid owner’s all seem to keep them for the long term.

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I now drive ~10k miles per year. The factory warranty on the hybrid battery pack of my PHEV is 8 years/100k miles. If I do somehow manage to live for 8 more years, I likely won’t be driving anymore at that point, so as far as I’m concerned, that hybrid battery’s warranty coverage is probably more than I actually need.

I don’t see anyone buying an electric vehicle unless it is a second car and you can have a home charging station. Who wants to add a time consuming chore to their life like finding and using a charging station? I know I don’t.

Why is 550 miles range so important whey you stop for bathroom breaks and food more frequently? Because finding and using a charging station is going to be in addition to the breaks you are already taking. And as electric cars proliferate, there is going to be the additional task of waiting in line to charge. Esp in rural areas where EV sales are few.

The politicians are pushing EVs hard but the public and the infrastructure are not ready.

Where are we going to get all the extra clean electricity from when we have blackouts now just trying to cool our homes? When are we going to get serious and spend enough money to build the towers, transformers and who knows how many miles of heavier copper wire?


Teslas are already VERY numerous in my area. The Tesla charging station closest to my home has 10 Supercharging machines, and I’ve yet to see more than 4 cars being charged there. At the Menlo Park Mall, there are 8 Tesla Superchargers, and it is very unusual to see more than 3 of those charging stations being used.

But, how much smaller is the gas tank for a plug in hybrid? Should be adequate even for restricted toll roads that have service areas. Our service islands even have chargers for non-hybrid EVs.