On a bi-weekly basis, CAR welcomes our audience to decompress with our President and CEO, Carla Bailo, as she covers and shares her thoughts on the latest Hot Topics happening in the automotive industry. While the biweekly newsletter primarily covers four topics, this feature story previews two of the topics covered on December 17, 2021. If you would like access to the full newsletter for better insights into critical industry issues you and your organization are facing, sign up for our mailing list here.

 

HOT TOPICS 12/13/2021 – 12/17/2021

 

EV Charging

Carla’s thoughts:

It is great to see the dollars being allocated to “start to expand” our charging network.  As we all know, there will be more investment needed to truly obtain the levels necessary for an “electrified vehicle” country.  This investment is one of the great enablers for automakers moving headfirst into an electrified portfolio.

Now, the difficult part is spending these dollars wisely and efficiently.  We need to conduct research to determine the where, what type, and who will manage this network of chargers.  Just positioning them x distance apart isn’t the right solution, although some will try to convince you this makes sense.  We need to understand the “where” in terms of who will purchase the product first. These purchases may very well NOT be individuals but rather mobility service companies.  In fact, I would ascertain that this would be very wise IF we truly want EV’s to be accessible to all.  EV’s will remain out of reach of well over 50% of our population, if not more, for some time.  Public transit agencies will be key in providing electrified services for all.

Beyond the where, the type, who, and who will manage can be determined, but we must be cautious again.  We already have charging stations that no one is maintaining, and this is a major complaint of current EV drivers.

There is not a fast fix, and these challenges require thoughtful planning and execution.  We have the skills to do this work, but we also need patience. CAR is well-positioned to support this work and will do so in every way to support the industry.

 

Emissions

Carla’s thoughts:

This news is fast-moving these days.  We saw the proposal from NHTSA for fuel economy and heard that there are many supporters in the industry and many non-supporters from the EV-only companies.  This response isn’t a big surprise considering portfolios and revenues.  However, as a society, we know this is the right thing to do.

Aligned with my comments above, speed and the “how” are critical to be considered.  If we make requirements too stringent too fast, we will cause affordability and mobility issues.  Mobility must be democratized to provide equal opportunities for all.

Next, we must look beyond the tailpipe.Total carbon footprint must be considered.  This need applies to everything we consume as a society.  If we only knew the carbon footprint of several veggies and fruit at the market (which we can access nearly year-round), we would be astounded. Would that change our buying habits?  Maybe.  It definitely will for Gen Z and younger as they understand and experience the impact to our planet.

Environmental consciousness is a 2-way street – both industry and consumers. 

 

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Carla Bailo

Carla Bailo

President & CEO

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