GRA wrote:jlsoaz wrote: Some of us feared that Nissan and Mr. Ghosn were relying overly much on an argument we had employed in the 90s and 2000s in California to get Gen1 EV explorers to realize that the average commute is a short distance and can be served in theory by a shorter-range BEV. We knew that this argument is limited, and does not get at the heart of the matter when trying to reach a broader addressable market.<snip>
The argument is considerably older than the 1990s. Exactly the same arguments about how limited BEV range was all you needed for a city (read commute) car, that they could handle 95% (or more) of people's trips, etc. were being made by US EV advocates in the 19-oughts and (increasingly desperately) in the early 19-teens. It was just as true then as it is now, but the car-buying public didn't see things that way in either period. They wanted the range to be able to tour and not be 'tethered to a wire,' even though they'd rarely do so (the roads outside of cities weren't hard-surfaced, and were either dusty or mud furrows), and as the price of cars came down and the middle class could afford one (but only one), they wanted a universal car rather than a limited one. While many more households in the U.S. can afford multiple cars with considerable specialization now, as was only the case with the rich when cars first debuted, there is still a lot of resistance to the idea of limited vehicles, and that will continue as long as they are more expensive than unlimited ones.
Probably the easiest way out of this is when AV car sharing arrives in the not too distant future, as that will allow the public to have routine access to specialized fleets rather than having to specialize on a household basis, and do so at much lower cost.
Thanks, when I wrote this about the 90s and 2000s, I was wondering. It's good to have the improved historical knowledge, ... appreciate the response. On the argument itself, I'm firmly in the camp of pointing up that in effect, it is cutting off sales from a substantial part of the addressable market. It wasn't any different to experience this really than I thought it would be, but I do think it's worth saying that when I leased a Leaf crippled with this short gen1 BEV range, it cost me enough money (including to have to retain a gasoline car for longer trips) that I saw it not as a way of compromising and economizing (driving a vehicle that economize on energy use and expenses), but as a way of living well beyond my means for 39 months, in the area of transportation.