Monday, October 12, 2009

The results are in...

Two months ago a started a poll here that asked the question: "Would you buy an electric car if it were comparably priced to a gas powered car." The poll recently closed and 355 people voted; the results are as follows:

Yes, definitely: 329 votes (93%)
No, not interested: 0 votes (0%)
Only with a 150 mi range: 18 Votes (5%)
Only with a 200 mi range: 8 Votes (2%)

What does this prove? Well, probably not much but it was interesting to see how little people voted for the 150 or 200 mile option. I'm sure everyone that is considering an EV has range as one of their top concerns, but that didn't translate in the voting as much as I expected. Now I know that visitors of this site are already interested in EVs so it was an unfair place to conduct a poll like this. I didn't expect to get many "no, not interested" votes, but not even one in the 60 days the poll was up. During that time the blog had about 2,500 visitors as it is averaging about 40 visits per day.

The only thing I can take from this is that although range is a major concern, people just want to opportunity to buy an electric car. Everyone that has been an advocate for EV's knows there will be problems in the early years of deployment. Limited range, unavailability of convenient charging stations, power supply issues at their homes etc. Even with all these obstacles it is clear that people want to have the option of electric drive vehicles for sale. Especially if they have ever had the opportunity do drive one already, like the other MINI-E drivers and I have had. Many of us keep in touch via social network sites like Facebook and blogs like this, and we all share a common desire to own an EV once the trial lease is over and Mini takes the cars back.

The only question is who will we buy from? Tesla? I'd buy a Type S tomorrow if is was available at the estimated $50,000 price tag. Nissan? The Leaf isn't my ideal vehicle, but the price sounds like it will be under $30.000 and if it's my only option, I'll do it even if the batteries are leased as rumored. BMW? We hear Project i is secretly working on a 4 seat, 3dr hatchback but nothing more than that with no real release date other than maybe 2012. Chevy? The Volt is a very interesting vehicle with the gasoline powered generator for extended range driving. I still need more details about the car's fuel efficiency. Don't believe the 230mph crap that GM announced, they did that with smoke and mirrors. I'll be very happy if the car gets 75mph in extended range mode. Fisker also has an extended range plug in like the Volt called the Karma. The car looks awesome and is a full size 4dr sedan. It is expected to be priced around $87,000 and have a 300 mile range. Smart is even making an electric version of their current model the Fortwo. I've driven an ICE Smart, I think I'll pass. There are others, but details are sketchy at best as far as price and availability. I think the auto makes finally get that we want these cars so it's going to be interesting to watch the next couple years as they bring EV's to market. I'm going to own one of them for sure. After driving the MINI-E for a while now, I'm sold on electric.

Oh yeah, and thanks to everyone that voted in the poll!

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