“Mr. President, it is time to tap the brakes on the unrealistic government electric vehicle mandate.”
We couldn’t have said it better—or more succinctly—ourselves.
The auto dealers’ nine-paragraph letter explains—more politely and deferentially than we would have—to the president that his administration’s EV mandate is not just unrealistic, but unachievable as the requisite technology and infrastructure stand today (and well into the future), to say nothing of the lack of consumer buy-in.
That the administration’s unilateral mandate calling for 60% of new-vehicle sales nationwide to be EVs by 2030 and rising to 66% just two years later is unrealistic is not at all surprising.
That’s because it was created out of whole cloth by environmental extremists inside and outside the Biden administration with little or no understanding of—or regard for—market economics and business.
An auto dealer hands the keys to the proud owners of a new car. Electric vehicles remain a small share of the overall car market. (Photo: WestEnd61/Getty Images)
The letter from the auto dealers—representing every major brand and nameplate sold in the country—acknowledges that many “excellent” EVs are currently on the market.
“The reality, however, is that electric vehicle demand today is not keeping up with the large influx … arriving at our dealerships prompted by the current regulations. [They] are stacking up on our lots,” the dealers’ letter read.
After initial “hope and hype,” they wrote, “enthusiasm has stalled,” and the EVs are not selling as fast as they are arriving on dealership lots and in showrooms—“even with deep price cuts, manufacturer incentives and generous government incentives.”
The latter include federal tax credits of up to $7,500, which amount to regressive tax subsidies for well-to-do liberals who can already afford EVs to satisfy their virtue-signaling desires.
But there would be no need for those inducements if there were broad consumer demand for EVs. To some extent, it’s akin to offering a $2-off coupon on a bag of brand-name cat litter to people who don’t have (or want) a cat, albeit on a macro scale.
At the root of the problem is the attempt by the Biden administration (and by the governors of several blue states) to contravene the economic law of supply and demand by stipulating what consumers will be allowed to buy whether they want to or not.
The government also has no business telling an industry what it must produce and attempt to sell, even—or especially when—consumers don’t appear to want it.
“We are agnostic as to what we sell. Our business is to provide customers with vehicles that meet the needs of their budgets and lifestyles,” the dealers averred in their letter. They added that “the majority of customers are simply not ready to make the change.”
The reasons a scant 6% of new-car sales in 2021 were battery-electric vehicles are manifold, not the least of which is cost. The entry-level Tesla, for example, starts at $40,000, while the electric version of the Ford F-150 pickup truck goes for about $25,000 more than the gasoline-powered model.
There are also stumbling blocks to sales relating to the charging of EVs, starting with: How do homeowners without garages or apartment or condominium dwellers charge them?
Moreover, there are not now nearly enough charging stations widely available across the country, especially in rural areas, to plug into, even for the relatively few EVs on the road today, much less the infrastructure for the numbers of vehicles the Biden administration demands less than a decade from now.
Besides, who wants to spend hours recharging a car when it takes only minutes to refuel a gasoline-powered vehicle at a filling station?
And do we really need to restate the obvious about the dangers inherent in being dependent on an economic adversary, China, for EV batteries or, at minimum, for the rare earth minerals their manufacturing requires?
The open letter from the nearly 3,900 auto dealers—including 98 from Maryland and 90 from Virginia—explains all of this and more to Biden in urging a retreat from the current top-down diktat and for letting market forces work things out over time.
Originally published at WashingtonTimes.com
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