What two-thirds of US car sales are missing – TechWar.GR

Electric cars are not easy to find in American car dealers, a summary from the environmental group Sierra Club confirms. Two-thirds of the car dealerships surveyed across the United States did not have a single battery electric or plug-in hybrid vehicle for sale.

That’s inconsistent with the Biden administration’s climate goals, which rely on consumers switching from gas cars to electric cars to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed new emissions standards last month that are expected to increase sales of electric vehicles to more than two-thirds of all vehicle sales by 2032.

Research shows challenges that could prevent more American consumers from switching to electric energy

The study reveals challenges that may be preventing many American consumers from going electric the next time they’re at the dealership — from supply chain issues to limited choices in the types of vehicles on the market.

Sierra Club staff and volunteers called or visited 801 randomly selected businesses across the United States in 2022 to complete the survey. It does not include companies like Tesla that sell cars directly to consumers without its network of independent dealers. The Sierra Club asked dealers if they had electric equipment or hybrids for sale. And if not, would they like to sell them, barring any inventory issues?

It turns out that only 34 percent of dealers had at least one EV to sell. The other two-thirds of the delegates did not. “We have big plans to sell EVs, but we can’t find any,” replied a Chevrolet, Buick and Cadillac dealer in Maryland.

Census issues were the biggest hurdle across the country, according to the survey. Surprisingly, only 27 percent of businesses on the West Coast of the United States had electric vehicles – fewer than any other region. But since more electric cars are sold on the West Coast than anywhere else, the lack of electric cars sold in California, Washington state and Oregon probably reflects higher sales.

A Nissan dealer in Washington noted that it has sold only about 1,700 of the company’s Leaf electric hatchbacks over the past 10 years — but now, they’re struggling to keep them in stock. “At the moment they can’t get more than one at a time and it sells out immediately,” the seller said. Nissan is reportedly planning to discontinue production of the Leaf, one of the first available mid-range options that introduced early adopters to EVs, while it launches a new line of next-generation electric vehicles.

While overall EV inventory was low, the survey found that some luxury vehicles had a larger supply than cheaper alternatives. Mercedes-Benz sales had the most electric cars available, with electric cars available in 90% of the regions surveyed. Toyota and Honda were at the other end of the spectrum, with electric vehicles sold at just 15 and 11 percent of dealerships, respectively. (All automakers have been slow to launch the next generation of electric cars.)

“The bottom line is that automakers need to invest more in EV production to meet consumer demand,” the report said. That’s easier said than done, of course, with global semiconductor shortages and the Covid pandemic ravaging supply chains in recent years. President Joe Biden signed into law an updated tax credit for electric cars for the Inflation Reduction Act, but it is full of conditions about where the car and all its components were manufactured.

Of the 66 percent of dealers nationwide without EVs for sale, 45 percent of them said they “would not offer an EV for sale regardless of vehicle supply and supply constraints.”

Some reasons to return to accounting headaches. “We have to install a charger first before the automaker will send us an EV to sell,” a Chevrolet dealer in Wyoming told the inquiry. But Wyoming is also one of the states where Republican lawmakers are trying to ban EV sales.

If those feelings increase, it’s very bad news for the climate. Transportation accounts for more than a quarter of US greenhouse gas emissions a larger piece of its carbon footprint.