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GM President Mark Reuss Believes These Three Things Are Holding EVs Back

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【Summary】Price, range, and charging infrastructure are the three main things holding electric vehicles back from going mainstream in the U.S. believes General Motors’ President Mark Reuss.

Original Vineeth Joel Patel    Dec 01, 2019 8:00 AM PT
GM President Mark Reuss Believes These Three Things Are Holding EVs Back
The 2020 Chevy Bolt EV

Thank Nissan for coming out with one of the first all-electric vehicles for the masses with the Leaf or Tesla for making electric cars cool, but the auto industry is heading toward an electric future. Regulations and emissions probably have a large role in the transition, too. 

Still, regardless of the reasons, automakers are quickly adding electric vehicles into their lineups and moving away from cars with internal combustion engines. General Motors is busy adding more EVs to its lineup, but President Mark Reuss believes that there are a few issues holding electric cars back.

Range, Infrastructure, And Cost Are Issues

In a CNN article, Reuss outlines the three issues with electric cars: range, charging infrastructure, and cost. The first issue, range, is one that's difficult to quell because consumers have an expectation from vehicles with an internal combustion engine. People, as Reuss claims, will always want to be able to drive as long as possible between charges, because we've all been spoiled when it comes to how far cars with internal combustion engines can travel without needing to be refilled.

In a survey, the majority of consumers claimed that they wanted at least 300 miles of range out of an electric vehicle. Unfortunately, only Tesla has been able to break that mark with its electric cars. Reuss states that the other 90 percent of EVs on the market have roughly 240 miles or more. Clearly, EVs have some ways to go.

But Reuss isn't worried. The automaker recently came out with an updated version of the Chevrolet Bolt EV that has 21 more miles of range than before – up to 259 miles – and Reuss believes that other automakers will introduce updated versions of old electric cars with more range as they continue to improve on lithium-ion batteries, too.

The second problem is charging infrastructure, or rather the lack of one. EVs don't have a good amount of range for consumers and the lack of charging stations doesn't help, either. In order to fix the issue, Reuss believes that manufacturers, the government, industry groups, and charging companies will all have to work together to ensure that charging stations are more readily available.

Lower Cost Of Ownership Is Key

The majority of charging, roughly 80 percent claims GM's President, takes place at an owner's home. So private charging stations are just as important, if not more important, and will require more companies that are capable of installing personal chargers at homes.

Lastly, is the issue of price. While electric cars have a lower cost of ownership than vehicles with internal combustion engines, the purchase price for the vehicles is much higher. Reuss believes that will change as battery efficiency improves and prices come down. But that, according to him, will take at least another decade. Prices after that will continue to fall as regulatory costs on gas and diesel engines will increase.

Reuss believes that tackling these three things will result in the widespread adoption of electric vehicles. Making electric vehicles that are just as good or better than vehicles with internal combustion engines is another issue automakers will have to tackle if they want consumers to fork over their money for an EV

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