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Want a Low-Cost EV? Forget Tesla!

Note: This article may contain commentary or the author's opinion.

The world is being dragged kicking and screaming into a “green” future of windmills, solar panels, rolling blackouts, energy shortages and likely starvation, but look on the bright side; maybe we will have a little more glacial ice and a few richer politicians that invested in green energy companies. Awesome!

Electric vehicles are the linchpin of the green movement. We are being sold on the idea of a zero-emission vehicle being integral to stopping climate change. Of course, no one wants to address how these vehicles are being built, where the rare battery materials are being mined, and how we can all possibly charge EV’s considering states like California are already asking people NOT too. That would be inconvenient and would force the left to admit some uncomfortable truths.

One of those truths is lower middle class and poor people will NEVER be able to afford a new, or likely even a used EV. Where does that leave them, on foot? On horseback? Or as my mom used to say, SOL.

A used electric vehicle is simply not going to be an option for most folks simply because of the maintenance costs and the potential battery replacement cost. A ten-year-old ev will need a battery sooner rather than later, and at current price tags, are out of the question. So, what can be done? Can an affordable electric vehicle be built and sold? Tesla says no. check this out from MSN:

At Tesla the base price of the Model 3, the entry-level sedan, is $46,990, according to its website. Chief Executive Elon Musk had promised that this car would be sold at $30,000 to enable a large number of people to afford it.

In 2018, Musk even told YouTuber Marques Brownlee that three years thence, Tesla could build a low-cost car that sold for $25,000.

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Look let’s be real here, even at 30k, an electric car is a hard sell. For my money 30k is tough to swallow for any car. That is a lot of money for middle class folks like me, imagine how a single mother of three of three is going to do it. She isn’t. What are her options?

I could see 25k, and if anyone could do it, it would be Tesla. Elon Musk has continued to do things people said couldn’t be done. The dude has his own rocket company for Pete’s sake. So, why aren’t 25k Tesla’s available now?

In January 2022, Musk dashed the hopes of potential car buyers by saying “We’re not currently working on the $25,000 car. At some point we will. We have enough on our plate right now. Too much on our plate, frankly.”

What is the issue? Why isn’t Tesla working on a 25k vehicle now? Cost is the issue. I worked many years in automotive manufacturing and have seen first-hand what it takes for a company to stay profitable. Everything continues to go up in cost, including wages, parts, and costs directly related to the manufacturing process, especially with all the technology on an EV. Cheaper parts and cheaper labor are two of the main paths to maintaining profit, and while the environment is a nice idea, profitability is an automakers priority.

The cost of manufacturing a Tesla vehicle has dropped by 57% from 2017. Manufacturing a Tesla currently costs $36,000 compared with $84,000 in 2017.

The company managed to slash costs and innovate enough to cut production cost almost 50k in four years. How much slashing and innovation is left, even for Musk?

We have a looming crisis on our hands with the auto industry. Ev’s are a nice idea, but I would recommend you hang on to that old gas-powered beater until all of this gets figured out, if ever.