Electric Cars and their Impact

Aadi Shiv Malhotra (‘21)

Over the last few years, one man and his companies frequently dominate the technology landscape. This person is none other than Elon Musk.

Elon Musk started with a company known as PayPal and then used the income he earned from PayPal to fund his other companies such as: Tesla, SpaceX, Hyperloop, The Boring Company, and Neuralink. Musk believes that global warming through climate change is a major issue, and wants to reduce global warming through the means of sustainable renewable energy. He has done this through many mean such as creating electric cars, and promoting development of solar products.

Elon Musk started of Tesla by creating a car known as the Tesla Roadster, which was based on a Lotus car platform. Subsequently, Tesla created the Model S and Model X which were targeted as luxury electric car rivals to Mercedes and Audi for a wealthy and knowledgeable clientele. However, Musk wanted to produce a mass-market production car that could revolutionize the electric car industry. He introduced the Tesla Model 3 in March 2016. The Model 3 got 325,000 reservations in its first week. What made the Model 3 special was its high quality features offered for a price starting at $35,000 (it is important to note, however, that this base model is not being produced). This car has since its release become the best selling premium midsize sedan.

Elon Musk, by creating the Model 3, showed to the world that electric cars can replace gasoline powered cars. We are living in a time when we are starting to transition from gasoline powered automobiles to electric powered automobiles. Legacy automakers such as Mercedes, Audi, BMW, Ford, and most recently GM have started to incorporate electric cars into their portfolio. General Motors recently announced their decision to scale back by laying of salaried workers and production workers. A large part of these cutoffs is also related to the need for increasing automation in the workforce.

The major selling point of electric vehicles over gasoline powered vehicles and hybrid vehicles is that these vehicles are all ‘zero-emissions’ as electric motors do not have any carbon pollution output. This is a plus-point for environmental activists as these cars do not contribute to the carbon emissions in the world. Electric cars are also more affordable than gasoline powered cars due to electric cars being less complex and requiring less maintenance than standard electric cars. The low cost of these EVs is further helped by the fact that the federal government and many states offer a rebate or tax refund of up to $7500. Furthermore, additional tax cuts are offered to individuals who buy charging systems. Even larger cuts are provided to businesses who buy the charging equipment for their employees, which further incentivizes companies and individuals to purchase electric cars. Electric cars have been shown to be safer than gasoline powered cars, due to the extra reinforcement for their batteries, and have better performance than traditional cars by offering maximum performance instantly. Many electrical utilities are planning to join state and federal governments in offering incentives to electrical car owners

Electric cars are the future. Their low cost of ownership, high safety and performance, and incentives make them an attractive option and serious competitors to their gasoline powered counterparts. Electric cars also have the potential to develop into self driving cars due to the amount of technology that is included with these vehicles. With all of these benefits, electric cars are sure to be the future of automotive transport.

 

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