My Car Quest

August 13, 2022

Editorial: Let’s Get Real

Starting with the White House.

by Wallace Wyss –

I was surprised when President Biden recently heaped praise on GM for starting the electric car revolution. Well, they may have started it in the US with the EV-1 but I guess no one told him they recalled every single one of them and buried the project (literally, crushing the cars). It took them decades to come around to making an electric car again and now the only pure electric they have in showrooms, the Bolt, is under watch because it spontaneously catches fire and, if it’s in your attached garage, could take your house with it.

Biden drove the electric Hummer and was enthusiastic but didn’t seem to notice the accomplishments of Tesla, which has produced thousands of electric cars now out on the road starting as long as a decade ago.

Tesla also brought new methods of manufacturing to the fore; where GM is still sticking to many of the old methods, some going back to the dawn of automotive history.

GMC Electric Hummer

GMC Electric Hummer

Ironically Tesla’s chief designer is an ex-GM designer who designed the Pontiac Solstice among other cars. Plus Mary Barra’s (GM CEO) engineering expertise is now tainted by the fact she got sucked in by a fast talker heading up a start-up called Nikola, wanting to make a deal where they could work together after being impressed by their Badger pickup and not realizing their semi-tractor video was a Hollywood set-up, the truck rolling down a road powered solely by gravity (it had started high on a mountain). That fast talker is now under Federal indictment.

Last time I looked GM wasn’t even in the Top 5 of electric car sales in the U.S. so why is Biden wasting time complimenting them when they’ve been so slow to ramp up? I think he’s scared of Musk; that if he lauded him onstage, Musk would say what he really thinks of the American auto industry. Well, it doesn’t matter what Musk says, he’s going around all the obstacles. To think, Michigan actually had a law forbidding Teslas to be sold new in Michigan (on the grounds they had no service facilities).

Well, making laws to fight a more progressive automaker won’t help. Times they are a-changin’….

Let us know what you think in the Comments.

Wallace Wyss

THE AUTHOR: Wallace Wyss is the author of 18 auto history books and a regular commentator on Autotalk broadcast weekly by KUCR-FM Riverside, California.

 
 

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Editorial: Let's Get Real
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Editorial: Let's Get Real
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I was surprised when President Biden recently heaped praise on GM for starting the electric car revolution.
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Comments

  1. Glenn Scott Krasner says

    Pope-Waverly, Baker and others were electric cars at the turn of the 20th century, and electric cars were actually more popular than gas cars for a short time. The invention of the self-starter, substituting for the dangerous hand crank, successfully killed the electric car business, until its newfound renaissance. Where all the electricity to power all of them will come from is another story. Glenn in Brooklyn, NY.

  2. Wes Stewart says

    I could swear that I’ve seen one of these on the streets of Tucson, since they were “all” crushed. Before that there were some here, one driven by “Bookman’s”, used bookstore owner who put in charging stations in his parking lots.

    There is at least one (maybe incomplete) in public hands: https://www.thedrive.com/news/31345/theres-an-ultra-rare-1999-gm-ev1-abandoned-in-an-atlanta-parking-garage

  3. wallace wyss says

    I heard one owner filed a lawsuit to keep his, Maybe they were only leased.Even the Bolts aren’t being confiscated, I see one a day, but you’re cautioned not to garage it and to park it 50 feet from other cars. Oh, that’s no problem, tight?

  4. Robert Feldman says

    Wallace, I do not want to turn this post into a political football, but the proposed build back better bill includes a $12,500.00 tax credit for union built electric vehicles. This excludes Tesla, Honda, and Toyota which only qualify for a $7,500.00 tax credit. Recently at a UAW meeting in Michigan, the president stated that he wanted to keep the business (and the money) in Michigan. We have all seen him driving an electric F150 and a new Hummer. Ever seen him driving a Tesla? Elon Musk was not invited to the electric vehicle summit either. The president is more interested in rewarding his union friends than getting electric vehicles on the road otherwise there would be no differentiation in tax credits available.

  5. Mike Stellato says

    Robert Feldman called it right…. President Biden was catering to the Unions.

  6. Wes Stewart says

    There shouldn’t be any tax credits. You want to drive an electric car, you pay for it, don’t ask me for help.

  7. Remember the Dot Com Bubble ? Inner city electric car/Delivery vehicle application is a no brainer. To think that idea can be applied across the great expansive areas is folly.

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