September 9, 2021

Markets & Free EnterprisePolicy

5 Ways The Market Is Ushering In Our Electric Vehicle Era

By: Kelvey Vander Hart

If you had asked me whether I wanted to drive an electric vehicle (EV) a year ago, I would have laughed at the thought. The idea seemed frivolous and unrealistic. But as innovation improves everything about EVs and the companies that produce them take the initiative to expand the industry, I found myself scrolling through sales listings for these vehicles. The free market has done more to usher in our electric vehicle era over the last few years than any government mandate or national target could. 

Here are five ways market-based initiative and innovation have helped accelerate this transition: 

Increased Supply

Gone are the days where your options for an EV purchase were slim. Car manufacturers around the globe have announced that they are fully transitioning over to only manufacturing EVs. This list of manufacturers making the transition includes General Motors, Volvo, Ford (starting in Europe, with the goal likely to expand to cover the United States), Volkswagen, and Toyota. 

Private Charging Infrastructure

Lack of charging infrastructure has been commonly touted as a problem with EVs. But private companies are stepping up to the plate to install chargers nationwide. From utilities to gas stations, more and more charging stations are popping up. Shell’s plan to roll out 500,000 charging stations is one great example. 

Longer Mileage Range

Mileage range has been a long-standing problem hindering demand for EVs. Who wants to take a road trip with a car that can only go a couple hundred miles or so? Thankfully, more EVs are rolling out with much broader range capacities. As of this month, there are multiple vehicles that will be available soon with the ability to go more than 500 miles on one charge. This is comparable to traditional vehicles, signaling that EVs are quickly becoming mileage competitive. 

More Affordable Models

Price has additionally been a factor keeping Americans from being able to purchase EVs. But the price point for new EVs is starting to lower – there are multiple models available to the public with prices comparable to new traditional vehicles. As supply of EVs increases, affordability is also expected to increase. 

Better Technology

Finally, technology for EVs is simply becoming better. Since the release of Tesla’s Roadster roughly a decade ago (released with an original price tag of $100,000), car manufacturers have been in a constant state of testing and improvement. As EV technology and components improve, they become safer, more reliable, and more economical. 

The federal government can tout the need for EVs all day long. But bureaucracy will not get the job done – only innovation and market-based initiative can create an EV marketplace for all Americans. As always, markets, not mandates, and innovation, not regulation, are what will usher in solutions to our environmental problems.