Hey, Automakers: Ramp Up Your EV Production!

Electric Vehicle
More charging stations equal more EV sales. Photo: Creative Commons

Survey shows that more than a third of Northeast drivers would like an electric vehicle.

Car makers face a bit of a chicken and egg situation when it comes to electric vehicles. EVs require charging stations, but more charging stations won’t be built until enough drivers switch to EVs. So manufacturers need to know that buyers will choose their EVs and buyers need to know they will be able to charge their new cars.

According to a new survey by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) and Consumers Union, “35% of Northeast drivers are likely to consider an electric vehicle for their next vehicle purchase or lease” and “more than 4 out of 10 households in the Northeast could use an EV with little or no change to their driving habits and vehicle needs.”

Yet, new electric vehicles are often released just in California. The Chevrolet Spark EV is only sold in California; the Fiat 500e in California and Oregon.


Fiat 500e in Oregon. Photo: Fiat

What’s for sale?

The survey looked at vehicles for sale in the Northeast and California this year, and found “only 1,744 new plug-in vehicles were available on Edmunds.com in and near New York City, and only 733 vehicles available on Edmunds.com in the Boston region were plug-in EVs. Searching Edmunds.com over the same time period for plug-in vehicles within 50 miles of Oakland, CA, on the other hand, yielded over 5,800 plug-in options, and 8,200 electric vehicles in the Los Angeles area.”

Even taking an EV for a test drive in the Northeast can be challenging.

Change on the horizon


The Tesla Model 3; on sale, but not yet in production. Credit: Tesla

Tesla recently opened a showroom in Red Hook, Brooklyn, an interesting choice since Red Hook is rather isolated and has few public transportation options. Will potential customers ride a bike to buy a car, or take the Ikea ferry?

If you live in the Northeast, please tell us why you would – or would not – consider an electric vehicle.

Judy Antell, who is TravelingMom.com's Free in 50 States editor, lives in Park Slope, Brooklyn, with her husband and... More about Judy Antell