Sunday, May 6, 2018

...On how some Tesla fans do more harm than good to the Electric Revolution

This morning, while waiting for my EV to charge at a public charging station (one of many inconveniences of living in an apartment), a group of teenagers walked by the car and one of them said in a way i could hear from inside it:

- Hey! This car is charging....

Then he looked to me and said, disapprovingly:

- Na...This is no good, buy a Tesla!

After the teen kids walked away, i remembered certain comments on webforums and EV-related sites, where Tesla-zealots praise everything that comes out of St. Elon's mouth or is made by the brand, while at the same time dismissing any other EV, as "Legacy-OEM garbage", "Compliance vehicles", etc.

90% of the elements of the Tesla-zealot tribe are good people in their analogic life, with friends and loved ones, which believe by defending Tesla with warrior zeal are doing their part to make the world a better place but, much like Trump-like supporters, they lost the critical spirit regarding what they defend, it's like, if their leader said:

- Go and jump off a cliff!

Many would do so...Or not. But who can tell, right?

And while defending Tesla and dismissing everything else, they mare making the EV Transition harder, because Tesla, wether we like it or not, can't make its own mission (Promote EVs and thus help to save the world from climate change) alone, not only because it's not affordable to the average person, but Tesla vehicles do not suit every person transportation needs, for that we need diversity, and with it, several kinds of EVs.

And because of this, other EVs shouldn't be seen as threat and sacrificed in the Tesla altar.

OK, the Leaf battery is not the best in the market, so what? If you don't want it, don't buy it, but do not shout it everytime you hear the words "Nissan" and "Leaf" put together...

And so what if the Jaguar i-Pace is not better than the Model X, doesn't it have the right to be sold, despite that?

Like i heard someone say : "There are as many different tastes as there are colours"

So what that not everyone is into Tesla? Tesla alone won't save us from future carbon-induced hells...


  1. AnonymousMay 06, 2018

    I totally agree with you ! And in fact, thinking like this is certainly the reason for you to make this blog. Thanks to you, we can see all these countries growing in the right way, with a lot of different electric cars. And the numbers speak by themselves : 274,971 non Tesla EVs have been built in the first quarter of 2018.

  2. Reminds me of iPhone users from not that long ago. Apple had it's time in the sun and Applists believed the product gap would never close.

    But close it did and will again. Thanks for driving an EV whatever it may be.

  3. That is a behavior that is not unique to Tesla fans. The same goes for BEV fans that don't understand how important PHEVs are for the electric revolution.

    People who drive electric should not have to excuse themselves among other people who drive electric.

    Always worth to remember is that Tesla has about 0,1% of the car sales market while BEVs and PHEVs has something like ~0,7-0,8% each. No one can do it alone.

    1. The PHEV bit is true, that is why I include PHEVs in the rankings, despite several requests to remove them.

      PHEVs are also playing their part, even if at first they go to company car drivers that don't bother plugging them in, once they are on the second hand market, they will surely go to the hands of people that will try get the most of the electric part.

    2. Well, I wouldn't treat them es equal and would have a second list for them.

    3. I believe having them together gives a better view on how the BEV/PHEV balance is in a given country.

      For example just by looking at the Dutch market ranking, you can tell it's a BEV-heavy market, while the neighboring Belgium it's the other way around. With two separate rankings, this conclusion wouldn't be as clear.

      Also, having two rankings for each country would double the work for me... :D

    4. Well, we should not put long range and short range BEVs in the same list either.

      Honda Clarity BEV and Tesla in the same list, treated as equals? Appalling. One is a majestic first car that you can easily take on road trips and the other a lousy city car at best....

      Oh, wait.

      As long as petrol and diesel sales dominates there is little need to separate between different kinds of EVs.

    5. ah ah ah, I see what you did there :)

      Good one.

  4. AnonymousMay 06, 2018

    Thank you! I admit that I am appalled by the so called fanboys of Tesla, it sometimes seems more like a cult..

    However, Tesla is atm by far the best product available, so there's some truth to it.

  5. Guh, I lost my fate in humanity. People are so stupid these days. They just worship whatever they chose to, no matter what...
    Whoever was it who said: "when people stop believing in god they start believing in everything" (paraphrasing) He was spot on. People suck.

    It was the same crap with Apple and Steve Jobs. Only that lot lost their messiah because he was stupid enough to go for "alternative treatments" for cancer

    1. Man, your comment is spot on. I couldn't have said it better.

      Kudos for that.

    2. Wow. That was unfortunate. You both sound oddly bitter and angry - but I'm genuinely surprised at the response from Jose.

      As someone who dislikes cults but also can't fathom the engendered hatred for any group, I found that too far to go. I guess I don't need to subscribe to this site any longer.

  6. Congratulations, you've demonstrated that teenagers are stupid. The conversation you heard could easily be substituted for this one:

    "- Wow look, that's a Subaru Impreza WRX!"
    "- Na...This is no good, buy a Shelby Mustang!"

    Yes there is an Apple-like religious cult forming around Tesla and Elon, and that is unfortunate. But is it really hurting sales of other EVs? I don't think so.

    I am budgeting to buy an EV in a year or two, and currently I'm undecided between the Model 3 and the new LEAF. The Hyundai Ioniq Electric is also a contender, and who knows what else comes out by then. Being a massive Tesla fanboy does not prevent me from considering other EVs, and it doesn't cause me to dissuade others from buying them.

    I also know for a fact that our local Tesla club has drivers of all kinds of EVs in it, and nobody is discriminated against.

    Yes there is a certain level of snobbishness developing around the Tesla brand. But the same can be said of BMW, Audi, Jaguar, Mercedes, etc. This type of behavior is very common in people, and is extremely common for cars. Yet when it comes to making the decision to buy, how many people does this truly affect? Maybe a few rich tossers who don't care about the price and will choose a Model X over an iPace because all their pretentious friends say Tesla is the best brand ever. But for every such guy there's another guy who will choose the iPace because Jaguar is the only brand worth having and Teslas are shite anyway. For normal people, things like range, style, practicality, and most importantly price of the cars will be what they decide on.

    This kind of thing will probably always go on. Apple fans will buy new iPhones with religous devotion, and Android users will forever roll their eyes at them. Canon users and Nikon users will never agree on which one is better. And teenagers will forever glorify the cars they like and dump on cars they don't like, none of which they can afford.

    And the world keeps on spinning.

    1. I agree with you, I was speaking of a minority of Tesla fans, that are a small percentage overall, but very vocal, that are contributing to create the idea among people outside the EV bubble, that there are two type of EVs:

      - Tesla, that are awesome and peerless;

      - Other EVs, that are so below Tesla, that they can only be crap.

      Possibly I should have been more specific on that.

    2. Hi Jose, I have a feeling it will end up like if i have to use analogy from mobile phones: Apple (Tesla) vs Android (rest).... Tesla like Apple is building superior closed ecosystem that is just working and Apple is making almost all the profits in the industry and cult like brand following.... Android also good but no one is making money from Android phones... To defend Elon, he himselds is saying that he wants competion and other OEMs' to go full speef EV as his main goal is transitions to sustainable future which Tesla can't do alone...

    3. I don't know if this happened to you in Portugal, but if so, this will demonstrate two things:
      - Like every where in the world, teens can be very stupid and cruel only to show of in front of others teens.
      - Well, EVs and Tesla are now well known in most of world, which is good.

      About Tesla/Elon Zelators in forums/articles comments, etc... I would like to spot two things too:
      - There is stupid people in every community (or people in every community that seize the some how anonymous statue of internet to vent some frustration or some nerves, which are more like a troll attitude than other things);
      - Then, there is also people that seems to have a purpose to take revenge will all attacks that Tesla had since the day when it was reveal as a car manufacturer, from all other people owning incumbent brand cars. This will not excuse such bad attitude from these zelators, but it's understandable as Tesla as the brand, but also Tesla owners or fans have been ridiculed, despised, mocked and insulted since ten years ago, like any other car start up.

      Thankfully, as the EVs are more and more common in the streets and Tesla will be able to stand up by its own, the Tesla hating will slowly disappear and Tesla blind Zelators will have less reason to "cry out".
      For the teens, well, when I was young, it happened to see some of my friends to criticise some Japanese sport cars in the streets of France (where I was raised)because not being Porsches or Bugattis, or Ferraris (the cars they had in posters in their room's walls). The new symbol of cool cars that teens have in their rooms are Tesla cars, so, I guess we will have to deal with same teen stupidity in the era of electric cars...

      A question to you José about your charging. Doesn't you have a parking spot in the basement of your apartment building or is it your condominium that didn't let you to install an electric plug in the garage, or some other reason? I'm curious because my next car will be electric (still some 5 to 6 years to go, but...) and I wonder how to deal with the condominium at that time.

    4. Peter: That's the thing, Elon Musk understands that Tesla alone cannot change things, it will need to be a global sector change, with Tesla serving as the disruptive factor.

      If only that minority of Tesla zealots undertood this...

    5. Marsusul: It happened to me here in Portugal, last Sunday morning.

      Regarding charging, the apartment building i live doesn't have reserved parking spots, so it's impossible to charge where i live, i have to drive some 8 kms to find the closest public charger.

      For people who have reserved parking spots, i believe the best way is to submit the request to the condo association and install a counter on your parking spot associated to your apartment.

      Oh, and thanks for your opinion, it means a lot to me.

    6. Ok. And thanks for the tips about condos.

  7. Sometimes I have a feeling that Tesla is harming ev adoption by itself when making cars that too good for their price.

    Nobody buys Leafs for 30 000 now, because they are waiting for 35 000 tesla3, because it is going to be 5 times better.

    And it is not only Leaf - it is everything. (Have you seen Tesla-Zoe or Tesla-Bolt drug racing?)

    And Tesla can't make profit of Tesla 3, while they could be selling them for 60000 for long range version and hundreds of thousands people would buy it anyway.

    Long story short, Tesla venicles just too good and make everything else look stupid.

    (On the other hand, the very first EV that I have been inside was Tesla X and I think that I would never become EV fan, if it was Zoe) So, it is all complicated :)

    1. Do not get me wrong, Tesla did, and does, a lot for EVs, probably we wouldn't be that far along the EV Revolution if it weren't for them.

      But having said that, the duality Tesla = awesome / Other EVs = crap, that a small percentage of Tesla fans have on their minds, is not helping the EVangelization of buyers outside the Tesla bubble.

  8. AnonymousMay 08, 2018

    We should appreciate anyone who lives in apartment and yet buys a plugin vehicle and goes to a charger and waits for 30 - 40 minutes during charging. Even a hybrid vehicle buyer should be appreciated since they may cut down the pollution and oil consumption by 40 - 50% compared to the gasmobile.

    It's so sad that Tesla fans will go to the extent of mocking other plugin buyers. After all all electric and plugin vehicles have a lot in common and are working together to reduce the battery prices, pollution and foreign oil.

    At the same time, there are many others who mock at Tesla and this could lead some Tesla fans to mock at others.

  9. Fanatics are always a problem. And Tesla fanatics, are a problem for EV in general, and for Tesla specially.
    Tesla is a maker that makes a very bad quality cars. Tesla cars, had a lot of problems, suspensions, engines, materials, equipments, technology, ergonomy, safety.... But, if your clients are people that doesn't get angry with the problems they suffer, if the fanatics always try to hide this and justify Tesla, if they are ok with all of this... Tesla doesn't need to evolve and improve their productos, because everything will be forgiven.
    In a long term, I think Tesla will pay for that. They are comfortably accommodated in flattery, and all those fanatics, make a good job sharing the word of the God Tesla worldwide, but when all makers will have their own range of EV's, reliables, affordables, well designed... Tesla probably will dissapear.

    1. I am not so pessimistic on the future of Tesla, but in 15 years time, there will be some big challenges for the brand, as their current distinctive features (range, infrastructure, Autonomous drive) will be considered almost like a commodity.

      I think cars will be evaluated more like mobile rooms than driving things, and as such, the Premium makers will be evaluated by their luxury finishings and technology/connectivity.

      Because Luxury isn't a strong point for Tesla, they will have to focus on the connectivity thing.

    2. In ten years, Starlink could be available for Tesla connectivity madness :).
      In 15 years, I expect Tesla Energy Division to be (far?)bigger than Cars/Trucks/Semis Division.

    3. Yeah, that's one Tesla strongpoints, looking at electricity as a ecosystem, just like Apple does with their products.

  10. By the way. What leaf do you have? A first generation? Because the second gen seems already quite nice with a 151 mile range. (It'll be even better with the 60kWh 200 mile range variant.)

    1. It's not a Leaf. It's a Kia Soul EV :)

      I agree with you, the new Leaf could be the first mainstream EV to be cost competitive with regular ICE competition, just wait for the current fever to end and see Nissan doing big discounts on the 40 kWh version, putting its price on par with the average ICE compact car.

    2. Ah, okay. The way you mentioned it in the article made it sound like so.

    3. I'm not a Leaf owner (too big for my needs), but i am a fan of the car, as it is an EV for the masses, without major production constraints, and will probably be the first mainstream electric car to be price-competitive with the ICE competition.

      Oh, and Nissan is one of the few legacy-OEMs actively willing to sell EVs, doing ads and the rest of marketing gismos, in order to sell them in volume.

    4. Too big? How?
      The soul EV is 1.8x1.6x4.1 the LEAF2 is 1.79x1.53x4.5 (LEAF1 is 1.77x1.55x4.45)
      It's smaller by two dimensions. It's only a little bit longer by .35 meters, which probably mean more cargo space. Even so it's more efficient. And it looks to be a little cheaper also. I definitely go with the LEAF right now. The soul had slightly more range than the old LEAF though.

      To me the Bolt is most interesting. Near as efficient as the Model 3 and more practical. A tad pricy though. But it's well within proportion to the LEAF. 25% more expensive, but 58% better range.

    5. The car that the Soul replaced (Honda Jazz) had as primary mission was a commuter car, running around Lisbon and its whearabouts, so i wanted a car able to squeeze on small parking spots.

      When checking for a replacement, around a year ago, we had to define priorities and ended up excluding the Leaf for its size.

      Those 4,45 mts were just too much for what we wanted.

      We ended with three options: BMW i3 (my favorite), Renault Zoe and Kia Soul EV.

      The i3 as new was just out of our price range, and as 2nd hand car had the problem of having a small range, so it too was excluded.

      In the end it was up to Zoe and Soul. If Renault didn't offered any kind of discount and we had to wait for 4/5 months for the car, Kia had just registered the Soul EV we've bought, and provided a nice discount, placing the Soul EV as the cheapest option between the two.

      Add the lower price to the fact that we preferred the Soul EV over the Zoe, and you have a decision made.

      Different tastes and needs mean different decisions.

      In a few years, when replacing our other ICE car (The one we do road trips), we will privelige long range and space, so the Leaf 60 kWh will be one of the main candidates.

      Finally, the Bolt Euro-cousin (Opel Ampera-e) is not sold in most of Europe AND in the few places it's sold, it's even pricier than the BMW i3.

      But that's GM fault, they've created a car (Bolt) that would sell like hot cakes in Europe, but then decided to sell Opel to PSA. Dumb decision.

    6. "Finally, the Bolt Euro-cousin (Opel Ampera-e) is not sold in most of Europe AND in the few places it's sold, it's even pricier than the BMW i3."

      Yeah, they're idiots. The engineers design a really good car and they totally screw up marketing it. It's primarily marketed in the US where people only care for large SUVs and Pick-ups. Those who aren't mostly pre-ordered Tesla-s, because of the hype factor.

      "But that's GM fault, they've created a car (Bolt) that would sell like hot cakes in Europe, but then decided to sell Opel to PSA. Dumb decision."

      I expect they don't sell the Bolt directly (or any other GM cars) since they sold Opel, do they?

    7. They sell the Bolt to PSA, on a profit, of course, then PSA sells them (On a profit too) to Opel customers.

      Besides a couple of Bolt units going to Norway and Volts going to Ukraine, most likely private imports, i haven't heard anything on importing directly Chevrolet PEVs to Europe.

      Is anyone interested in this?

    8. "Is anyone interested in this?"

      What do you mean, the car? I would hope so. Otherwise I'm not sure know what you're thinking about.
      To me it was interesting information. Especially that it was claimed that GM can't sell what they produce, and many people don't even know about it:

    9. I was asking if someone was interested in importing Bolts to Europe.

      But i guess GM is not interested.