Automakers and environmentalists alike have pinned a lot of hope on the electric car. It is the wave of the future, they tell us, and it is the only way we will ever been weened off of oil. But when can we the average Americans, expect to get behind the wheel of one of these silent, emissions-free vehicles?
According to Ford’s CEO Alan Mullaly in an exchange with Mahalo’s CEO Jason Calacanis at the All Things Digital conference, not anytime soon.
By now, we all know the limitations of electric cars as they stand today; relatively short range, heavy and expensive batteries, and the lack of an electric charging infrastructure. During the questioning of Mullaly, Calacanis interrupts to say that his $110,000 Tesla Roadster gets 240 miles a charge and charges in three hours. I’m willing to believe that (though many media outlets have reported far less range, especially in cold weather).
But Mullaly shoots back that not all Americans live in homes with garages or near electric vehicle charging stations. I know I don’t. And 240 miles is pretty good range, but its not enough for everyone to be sure. And three hours is a long time compared to how long it takes to fill a tank with gasoline. And not everyone can afford a $110,000 two-person coupe either.
Electric cars are coming. But we gotta be patient and make sure we get them right this time.