... growing up on the farm ... the benefit for this has to
outweigh the operating cost ... a dedicated 240 volt
receptacle, using electricity that is already being delivered to your
location represents a much smarter option ...
% Tom's post give's a farmer's/rancher's view, vs the negative-smelling news
item (below), which tries to make a (koch) point that Pu-truck EVs (or EVs
in general) are not as good as ice.
GM joins Tesla, Ford in building EV pickups — but Texas ranchers don’t want
a ‘playboy’s truck’
May 3 2019 Paul A. Eisenstein
CNBC: 2019 NYIAS: Rivian electric trucks
Rivian EV Pickup Truck. Adam Jeffery | CNBC
H/O: Rivian R1T electric pickup
Rivian R1T electric pickup truck Source: Rivian
Handout: Workhorse W-15 Electric Pickup Truck 001
Workhorse W-15 Electric Pickup Truck.
Source: Workhorse Electrify America
Ford is investing $500 million in electric truck maker Rivian
Nikola challenges Tesla in the semi market
Elon Musk plans a truck he says looks like something out of ‘Blade Runner’
Tesla has been hinting at its plans for a truck for several years, and
CEO Elon Musk is promising to reveal more in the coming months.
Detroit-based Rivian unveils its own battery-powered pickup, the R1T, at
the Los Angeles auto show in November.
Ford is working up what is expected to be an all-electric version of its
General Motors, the nation’s largest automaker, is joining Ford, Tesla and
start-up Rivian in adding an all-electric pickup to its portfolio.
But Detroit’s Big Three and their challengers may have a hard time
persuading the ranchers, roughnecks and handymen who make up a lot of their
core clientele to trade in their diesel duallys for a battery-powered 4X4
Arguably, the most critical question, said Sam Abuelsamid, a senior
automotive tech analyst with Navigant Research, is “whether there’s a market
for an all-electric truck.”
GM CEO Mary Barra hasn’t offered any details about the pickup, but said GM
“will not cede our leadership” in the pickup segment, leading to widespread
speculation about what GM is developing and when it will come to market.
Slow to catch on
Considering the heavy use that many buyers subject their pickups to, that’s
no easy question.
Electric vehicles, in general, have been slow to catch on with American car
buyers. While sales of all plug-based vehicles — including all-electric and
plug-in hybrid models — jumped from 195,226 in 2017 to 360,353 last year,
according to industry data, that was still less than 2% of the overall new
vehicle market. And pure battery-electric vehicles alone generated barely
half of that total.
The vast bulk of the market is currently made up of a single vehicle, the
Tesla Model 3 sedan. But manufacturers hope to spur growth with the addition
of new products as diverse as the Audi e-tron SUV, the Porsche Taycan sports
car and the Jaguar I-Pace crossover that was named World Car of the Year at
the New York International Auto Show last month.
Now, manufacturers want to add all-electric pickups to the option list.
Tesla has been hinting at its plans for a truck for several years, and CEO
Elon Musk is promising to reveal more in the coming months. Detroit-based
Rivian got a leg up on Tesla and other competitors by unveiling its own
battery model, the R1T, at the Los Angeles auto show last November. Ford,
which is investing $500 million in Rivian, has confirmed it is working up
what is expected to be an all-electric version of its best-selling F-150.
Abuelsamid is one of those speculating about what GM might have in store.
While a battery-based version of the big Chevrolet Silverado seems likely,
he said the automaker could deliver a surprise. By opting for a midsize
model, along the lines of the smaller Chevy Colorado, said Abuelsamid, it
“would give them a chance to have a unique product in the market because
everyone is focusing on full-size trucks.”
What is all but certain, however, is that GM — and Ford and Tesla, for that
matter — will have to echo Rivian’s lead, delivering a vehicle that boasts
plenty of horsepower and stump-pulling torque with great range and
significant levels of towing and cargo capacity. The start-up’s R1T will
make “close to” 800 horsepower, CEO RJ Scaringe said in Los Angeles, enough
to hit 60 mph in 3 seconds. Its roughly 1,000 pound-feet of torque will let
it haul a trailer of up to 11,000 pounds, and it is expected to get up to
400 miles on a 180 kilowatt-hour battery pack.
Those are the sort of numbers that would seem to play well with classic
pickup users such as rancher Frank Helvey, who raises cattle and is active
in the livestock auction community near Pearsall, Texas.
“I wouldn’t buy one at all. It wouldn’t make sense for me. It sounds like a
playboy’s truck, instead of a work truck,” he said in an interview.
In Texas, where everything is bigger, the truck market is no exception.
The Lone Star state is home to the Dallas Cowboys, the world’s best barbecue
and the biggest truck market in the U.S. Texas buyers account for 15.7% of
the nation’s half-ton pickup market, according to Stephanie Brinley,
principle auto analyst at IHS Markit. That means one out of every six
half-ton pickups — like the Ford F-150, Chevy Silverado and Ram 1500 — are
sold in Texas.
Jeff Williams, another Texas rancher, said the technology interests him,
“especially if they can make an electric that has the same power and range
as a one-ton diesel.” But he remains skeptical of Rivian’s claims and the
promises made by other automakers that their electric pickups will offer
capabilities matching their gas and diesel models.
Williams operates two farms and six ranches in what he called “far West
Texas,” 275 miles from El Paso and even further from San Antonio. So, for
him, the two critical challenges are range and charging. And out in his part
of the Lone Star State there are few public chargers, especially the
high-speed ones he’d need access to when hauling his livestock to market.
“The other issue, out in the remote area where I live, is access to a
mechanic,” Williams added. He employs a mechanic who can handle his diesel
and gas trucks, but if an all-electric model “breaks down, what do I do?”
For his part, rancher Helvey says he does expect there’ll be a market for
all-electric trucks “for city dwellers and weekend warriors.”
But even some of the folks that might fall into those categories remain
“I like the idea” of a battery-powered truck,” said Jennifer Stevenson, an
emergency room physician at a suburban Detroit hospital and an owner of a
new Ford F-150 Lariat. And while she rarely hauls much cargo or tows a
trailer, Stevenson and her fiancé take frequent trips in remote places, such
as Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, and “I don’t want to have to worry about
finding a place to plug in.”
So, if ranch owners and weekend warriors remain skeptical, who might be
ready to plug in with an all-electric pickup? The most likely target is
fleet owners, said Brendan Jones, the chief operating officer of Electrify
America. That’s the company funded by $2 billion out of Volkswagen’s
settlement of its diesel emissions scandal, and it is spending most of that
money to set up a nationwide network of EV chargers.
Fleet owners “know how and where they use their trucks” and whether they can
deliver on their daily needs, both in terms of payload capacity and range,
said Jones, during a conversation at Electrify America’s headquarters
outside Washington, D.C. They may also find the lower operating costs and
reduced maintenance that battery-electric vehicles require attractive.
Jones pointed to the fact that a number of fleets are already moving to
larger commercial trucks, or at least testing them out. That includes
delivery services such as UPS and FedEx. Amazon has also teamed up with
Rivian, leading a consortium that will pump $700 million into the start-up.
While the online retailer hasn’t said what it has in mind, it has been
widely speculated it wants to launch a fleet of battery-powered delivery
Fleets have the advantage of not only knowing their daily needs but also the
ability to set up their own charging systems. For work-oriented vehicles
such as pickups to gain traction with retail customers, said Jones, “You’re
not going to see (that happen) until you have an infrastructure.” And that’s
something Electrify America and competitors such as EVgo and ChargePoint
hope to put in place over the coming decade.
Paul Eisenstein is a freelancer for CNBC. His quotes from Electrify America
COO Brendan Jones came from an interview in Washington, D.C., where the
company paid for Eisenstein’s travel and accommodations.
Electric Car Mechanics Graduate in San Jose
Apr 26, 2019 With more electric cars hitting the road, there is a need for
those who can fix them. In the first of its kind, mechanics graduated from
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