While GM’s Mary Barra signals virtue, the grandson of the founder of Toyota speaks an inconvenient truth.
“The current business model of the car industry is going to collapse,” warns Akio Toyoda – if the virtue-signaling (and mandating and subsidizing) of electric cars isn’t dialed back. Because there’s no mass market for electric cars, which are too expensive to be mass-market cars.
It’s the math, man.
This idea that people who can barely manage a six-year-loan on a $25,000 car will somehow manage a loan on a $32,000 electric car (the lowest-priced electric car currently available) is as ridiculous as the idea that everyone will eat steak and lobster twice a week if the government so orders.
If from subsidies, then the people will pay that way – via taxes – and have even less ability to afford to replace their $25,000 non-electric car with a $32,000 electric car.
It can be printed, of course. Or hey! presto!’d into digitized existence. But then the people pay via inflation – the depreciated buying power of the money they have available. This is why the car industry will “collapse” if Electric Car Dementia isn’t treated somehow.
You cannot sell cars that people can’t afford to buy.
Toyoda – who knows numbers – did the math. And not just the MSRP math.
He added up the volts and watts that would be needed to power the replacement of the existing fleet of non-electric cars in Japan with electric cars and found there isn’t enough electricity to power an all-electric car fleet in Japan and power everything else that runs on electricity in Japan – like electric lights and electric ovens and electric washers and dryers and AC/heat pumps and all the other things which are powered by volts and watts in Japan.
As pretty much everywhere.
Something will have to give.
Or go dark.
Unless a sum on the order of several hundred billion dollars – just for Japan – is conjured to finance the building of the additional generating capacity needed to cover the additional demand.
Where will that money come from?
It gets better.
Because even if the money could be found to subsidize a mass-fleet of electric cars and pay for the additional generating capacity needed to power them, that additional generating capacity would result in an increase in the amount of the dread inert gas, C02, being ”emitted” – because the additional generating capacity that would be needed to support the powering of a fleet of electric cars and everything else cannot be met using solar, wind or hydro-electric power, which barely accounts for 10 percent of the “grid” in most areas.
Solar/wind isn’t just not there; it is also less potent. Absent some miracle Great Leap Forward, it isn’t capable of generating the necessary megawattage.
Which leaves coal/oil natural gas (which together account for about 80 percent of grid power) to meet the need and these large-scale industrial emitters already emit a great deal more C02 than individual non-electric cars, combined.
To meet the increased demand, it will be necessary to build more coal/oil/natural-gas burning utility plants.
“The more EVs we build,” he explains, “the worse carbon dioxide gets.” More C02 – or more blackouts.
This being a two-fer right up there with paying 50 percent more for a roof that leaks.
“When politicians are out there (are) saying, ‘let’s get rid of all cars using gasoline,’ do they understand this”?
Yes, they do.
Toyoda is a very smart man but in this case, a naive man. His comments reveal an almost childlike inability to understand evil motives. That there are malignant people afoot who mean to cause harm.
These people know, in the first place, that electric cars are not economically viable.
It doesn’t take an MBA to understand that a person who can just barely manage a six-year-loan on a $20,000 car cannot afford a $32,000 electric car – the least expensive electric car on the market. That the loan term cannot be extended to compensate, not only because of depreciation but also because electric cars depreciate faster than non-electric cars, on account of their shorter useful service lives. Which is due to the shorter life of their very-expensive-to-replace battery packs, which are the equivalent in cost-to-replace of a non-electric car’s engine.
But the non-electric car’s engine will usually last the life of the car – 15-20 years or even longer. It is certain – barring the endlessly promised “breakthrough” in battery technology – that every actually existing electric car’s battery pack will have to be replaced at a much sooner interval, due to the physical/chemical facts about batteries and the degradation of charge capacity that inevitably takes place.
An EV with a battery that can’t hold a charge – or only half its original charge – isn’t just a useless car. It is a worthless car. Few will spend the $4,000-plus it takes to replace a tired EV battery when the EV itself isn’t worth $10k anymore.
This built-in shorter useful lifespan is why EVs can’t be financed for longer, as might be feasible with a non-electric car.
It is not sustainable.
Precisely the point.
Toyota – under the leadership of Toyoda – is the only major car company that hasn’t bear-hugged the EV tar baby. Instead, it is the leader in hybrid technology, which is problematic because it works – and because it is affordable – and thus keeps people driving.
Expect Toyota to get VW’d sometime soon for this act of heresy.
. . . .
Got a question about cars, Libertarian politics – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!
If you like what you’ve found here please consider supporting EPautos.
PS: Get an EPautos magnet or sticker or coaster in return for a $20 or more one-time donation or a $10 or more monthly recurring donation. (Please be sure to tell us you want a magnet or sticker or coaster – and also, provide an address, so we know where to mail the thing!)