My Car Quest

November 27, 2021

Editorial: The Gloves Must Come Off

It’s us or them in dominating the world’s electric car market.

by Wallace Wyss –

At a recent meeting between China and the U.S. in Alaska, the Chinese used the phrase “the gloves have come off” and it’s getting closer to revealing the long range aspirations of each country vis-a-vs the other.

I am only a car writer so can’t speak to the human rights issues, but in the car market I would say that it’s becoming apparent that:

1) The world car market is going electric

2) The country that makes the most electric cars that are “world acceptable” will dominate the world car market.

boxing gloves

Note the problem in the US with the US stepping up to the challenge is that the public in the US hasn’t been that welcoming to electrics. I have heard figures of electrics being as low as 2% of the US market and as high as 4% but in China it’s at least double digits. And they have at least ten different electric car companies. And among automakers in China are two American companies, Buick and Tesla.

I think while the labor rate in China is undeniably attractive (no union strikes there!) this situation could come to a head if and when an American President forbids Chinese-made cars to be sold in the US. This might happen as “punishment” for some act like China invading Taiwan, or some other military move.

Certainly that will crimp Chinese automakers’ plans for dominating the U.S. car market but not in the rest of the world. They can and will make electric cars in every price range where American car companies are going slow in electric car development and sometimes going inexplicably high (an electric Hummer will start at close to $100,000).

Being an American raised in a family where the breadwinner worked on the line at Ford in the River Rouge, I hate to see a world a few years from now where America is regarded as a “quaint” place for tourists to visit to see How It Used to Be (“Look, ma, they’re still driving internal combustion cars”) even though ironically every week I treasure having coffee outside in a small town (Claremont, CA) that has been “curated” by keeping the old buildings, and not allowing chain restaurants like McDonalds. I like going there, stepping back into the Time Machine as it were, but don’t want our whole country to be a place where the whole world thinks we live in the past.

What’s the solution? For Americans to embrace electric cars more, American-built ones, and for American automakers to make models that will be appealing to Europeans, Asians and South Americans, cars that can compete with Chinese-made electric cars in the world marketplace.

To raise desirability of electric cars in the U.S. the infrastructure will have to be pumped, like putting electric chargers at every gas station, at every college, high school and business, and hospital and military installation. Like demanding every new house have a charger, like letting electric car owners park free, like letting electric car owners park in the first few rows at every shopping center. In short, treating electric car buyers as the brave souls they were when backing the new technology with their car purchase decision.

Hey I love internal combustion engines, but I can see, now that the gloves have come off, it’s a case of survival in the world market. We don’t go electric, we’re history.

They will eat our lunch…

Let us know what you think in the Comments.

Wallace Wyss

THE AUTHOR: Wallace Wyss is the co-host of Autotalk, a radio show broadcast weekly from KUCR FM Riverside for the last quarter century.

 
 
 

 

 

pexels-bob-ward-3347244

Photo by Bob Ward from Pexels (Chicago)

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Editorial: The Gloves Must Come Off
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Editorial: The Gloves Must Come Off
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The country that makes the most electric cars that are "world acceptable" will dominate the world car market.
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Comments

  1. Good editoial. Like giving up smoking tobacco, or eliminating junk food, or many other things that become too obvious to ignore if you want to live a healthier life, moving towards alternative energies in 2021 is just a fact of life.
    I just completed my 3rd restomod using fuel efficient FI powered engines but it’s probably time to consider using an electric engine in my next restomod. And with electric motors currently getting the equivalent of 100 mpg, that’s a nice upgrade from 20-25mpg.

  2. wallace wyss says

    I think once we have the sound effects via a CD { and one company is even adding a vibration device,} we will be satisfied that it’s almost like the real thing. Of course with electric motors it won’ t be like when so-and-so built your engine but you’ll change out a motor in a few hours, no rebuilding necessary

  3. Glenn Krasner says

    Making cars (electric) that nobody wants. Glenn in Brooklyn, NY.

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