Electric cars

The latest figures for battery car sales in the EU show them down 11% in March, with a market share down at 13%. The fall in Germany was particularly steep. This follows news of price cuts and poor sales at Tesla.The Tesla share price is 62% down from the peak. Tesla announced 14,000 redundancies.

This should  be a salutary warning to governments and car companies. It is no good ploughing on with new products that too few people want to buy or can afford. Governments need to do more to deliver enough affordable renewable electricity before trying to force the pace on adoption of battery cars. Why try to sell more EVs when they need to be recharged with electricity from a gas power station?

Governments and international conferences have not been straight with the public. It is not green to scrap a petrol or diesel car early and make a new battery car to replace it. It is not  green to run a battery car recharging it with fossil fuel electricity. If many people do get EVs governments  will impose taxes on using them to replace lost petrol taxes. Using a battery  car will not be easy until there are many more fast recharging points. Going electric requires a huge expansion of the grid and cable systems that serve us.

Car companies spend plenty of money on EV car ads trying to make them look the thing to have .They never talk about running costs. How much does it cost to recharge? What happens to insurance costs? What is the true range? How long will the battery last? How quickly does battery performance deteriorate? How easy is it to repair a damaged battery car? The ads need to be more informative. Many people have many good reasons not to buy a battery electric car. The rich can afford them and often have a petrol car as well for long journeys. Most people think they are too dear, difficult to recharge away from home and no use if you do not have a driveway or garage of your own.


  1. Mark B
    April 22, 2024

    Good morning.

    My concern is, what now for the European car makers ? They have plunged huge amounts of capital and have almost ceased production of petrol and diesel engines.

    Once they had the lead and for the likes of Tesla and China’s fledgling car and truck industries the only way for them to catch up would be to invest very heavily or lease designs from their competitors, eating into any profits.

    But why not sell and idea of cheap, clean and efficient future using electric motor power instead ? Hey presto !! You have just jumped ahead of the competition or, at least, caught up with it. All you need to do is nudge a few elites in the EU and the USA and the media and you are away.

    I think what will happen is companies like VW and BMW will end up being bought by China and their technologies and full production moved East.

    As I have said here many times before – You can always tell where the government has been by the mess it leaves behind.

    1. Peter Wood
      April 22, 2024

      Chinese EV manufacturer claims a solid-state battery EV is now available: https://carnewschina.com/2024/04/09/im-l6-launched-with-solid-state-battery-and-1000-km-range-starts-at-31800-usd/
      Electric motors are far superior to ICE motors in energy conversion efficiency, typically +/- 85% to +/- 25% . The problem is energy storage, weight, convenience. We should and most probably will convert to EV’s, just need to upgrade the energy storage system.

      1. Ralph Corderoy
        April 22, 2024


      2. Lifelogic
        April 22, 2024

        @ Peter Wood
        “Electric motors are far superior to ICE motors in energy conversion efficiency” well “sort of” true but then if the electricity come from burning coal, bio wood ( young coal), diesel or gas (as so much of it does) then losses at the power station, in transmission, charging and discharging the battery negate this completely in general. If you then consider the energy needed to mine amd manufacture the rather short lived battery, the extra weight, and thus road & tyre wear, the back up needed for wind and solar then EV on average works out rather worse than keeping your old car.

        EVs damn inconvenient too especially if you live in a flat or house without parking/charging and or do long distances.

        Solid state batteries have their problems too and very expensive.

        1. Guy+Liardet
          April 23, 2024

          Wrote my Tory MP asking what was being done about electrifying road haulage without which EVs are (even more) pointless. Giant Danish diesel 12wheeler full of bacon has just thundered past. Ban it at Dover?

      3. John Hatfield
        April 22, 2024

        When is a solid state battery not a solid statebattery? When it is a semi-solid state battery.

    2. Peter
      April 22, 2024

      Sir John Redwood,

      All true. However the powers that be are not listening.

      I do have plenty of space for more cars and could hook them up to the electric overnight. However, our roads are always busy or under repair. There is a 20mph speed limit now to add insult to injury. Driving is generally unpleasant at most times apart from late evening and maybe 10am to 2pm.

      I note my local ULEZ poles that were all sawn in half now have new poles set up at last – but no camera has been installed a the top. A brand new ULEZ position was allocated but the pole there has also been sawn down. Crisps packets and a drinks bottle were rammed into the bottom half, so it had limited alternative use as a very small refuse bin.

      When it comes to the election of mayor Susan Hall the Conservative has a strong anti ULEZ stance but she will still lose as Khan has much stronger poll numbers. Maybe the outer boroughs should be removed from Greater London again or the post of Mayor should be abolished due to the harm that can be done.

      1. Mickey Taking
        April 22, 2024

        Both your last points should take place. Reduce Greater London, and abolish the post of Mayor.

      2. Christine
        April 22, 2024

        People vote on religious grounds and not on policy or what’s good for our country. If our demographic continues the way it is going then we are doomed anyway. I don’t understand why politicians can’t see this. I thought they loved modelling.

        1. Kathy
          April 23, 2024

          Oh, I think politicians CAN see it but they choose to ignore it because they are too scared to tackle the reason for the demographic change. Sadly, it will only get worse.

      3. Peter
        April 22, 2024

        Just had a brochure for Mayor of London and London Assembly elections. Forty two pages!!!

        Now you need photo id at the polling station. I don’t know why we need constituency London members and also London-wide assembly members. I don’t know what they do and doubt that it adds value.

        Thirteen mayoral candidates. Eleven have chosen to put a mini manifesto in the booklet. The London Real party did not. Nor did Count Binface, who I think previously stood in local elections as one of our many Monster Raving Looney party candidates.

        Will vote for Susan Hall, as the most prominent anti ULEZ candidate, even though she is Conservative. Khan will still win by a big margin though.

        Will need to bring the booklet to remember the candidates for the other roles and to remember my constituency is called South West.

      4. Lifelogic
        April 22, 2024

        Susan Hall may pretend or she may even actually be against ULEZ but Sunak and his “Conservative” Gov. certainly are not as they could so easily have stopped it but chose not too. The ULEZ and Congestion motorist mugging tax agenda goes back to Boris.

      5. Your comment is awaiting moderation
        April 22, 2024


        “Maybe the outer boroughs should be removed from Greater London again or the post of Mayor should be abolished due to the harm that can be done.”

        AGREED, abolishing City Hall would be the best option, it was always a risk that they would abuse their power

      6. Mark B
        April 23, 2024


        Unless the road in question has a Traffic Order and that a consultation has been made, then the 20mph is NOT legally enforceable.

    3. Dave Andrews
      April 22, 2024

      My BMW is 17 years old and still going strong. I don’t think China is interested in a company manufacturing quality products. Cheaply made with cheap materials is more their thing, so you take it back broken after a few weeks.

    4. Sharon
      April 22, 2024

      I read at the weekend, that Chinese car manufacturers are moving into empty Nissan and other factories in Europe , to produce cheap EV cars to sell in Europe. They obviously believe there to be a market… though I agree that people are choosing not to buy EV’s in any great numbers.

  2. formula57
    April 22, 2024

    As for “How quickly does battery performance deteriorate?” there should be gauge on the dashboard showing the state of the battery, so suggested Harry Metcalf (of YouTube Harry’s Garage) after finding the EV he ran had lost battery capacity with no easy means of discovering the extent. Deterioration is also particular to each vehicle, depending upon how they have been used and where (hot or cold climates).

  3. DOM
    April 22, 2024

    Don’t blame the car companies, they’re not to blame for this authoritarian debacle. It’s the blood-sucking fleas that govern our world that are driving this totalitarian agenda and they have every intentions of continuing their barbaric assault on our way of life.

    1. Lifelogic
      April 22, 2024

      Flees? More like huge leaches or lamprey eels.

      EVs typically cost about £15 a day just in capital costs and depreciation over their lives with electricity, higher insurance, maintenance and electricity on top. Plus they have higher tyre and road wear due to circa 30% higher weight. Far more expensive and less flexible than keeping your old petrol car and causes more CO2 overall too. If CO2 plant, tree and crop food bothers you that is, and it shouldn’t. Rather impractical unless you have somewhere to park and charge in too and people in cities do not have this. It might add £100k to the cost of you house and with a famility you might need three four or more spaces and chargers.

      1. Lifelogic
        April 22, 2024

        Tend to be low mileage cars too. So overall it might easily end up costing over £1 a mile perhaps 4 times as much as just keeping your old petrol car and this despite that fact that there is far more tax paid on the petrol for the car and road tax.

      2. Lifelogic
        April 22, 2024

        Not strictly eels it seems, some over a yard of blood sucking fish in length.

      3. Lifelogic
        April 22, 2024

        Labour will stop the small boats says
        YVETTE COOPER in the Telegraph.

        Sure Yvette we trust you!

        Sunak will not stop them and Labour are even less likely to reduce legal or illegal immigration.

      4. Your comment is awaiting moderation
        April 22, 2024

        EV battery production provides jobs for Congolese children

    2. Paula
      April 22, 2024

      14 years of Tory rule and by God we’re feeling poorer. MUCH poorer.

  4. Donna
    April 22, 2024

    If people continue to refuse to be bullied into buying an EV, the next Government will be forced to change the proposed date of the petrol car ban.

    People who can’t afford, or for practical reasons don’t want an EV, are not going to get one. Over years, people will stop driving (which IS one of the objectives of the WEF) but in the short to medium term that will mean people becoming less economically active: possibly deciding to stop work altogether; spending less in the tourist/leisure economy – because you can’t get to many destinations without a car etc. And that will feed through and hit the economy.

    It is possible to live in the UK without a car in a city; everywhere else it isn’t. If the petrol car ban stays, it will seriously damage the economy.

    Of course the Westminster Uni-Party won’t change “their” policy until the EU does.

    1. Dave Andrews
      April 22, 2024

      Where will people get a petrol car from? The manufacturers would have ceased production and repurposed their factories for EV only, according to the diktat of the authorities.

    2. a-tracy
      April 22, 2024

      Just look at what National Rail is doing every bank holiday weekend. All those Londoners forced out of their cards, Easter the whole of Euston was closed, advice not to travel on the bank holiday weekend (what! that’s when people most want to go on holiday or to visit their families) it is a national joke and some people want more nationalisation.

      May Bank Holiday out comes the notices of engineering work. Disruptions, 2 hour journeys become six hours like a family member had on Easter Monday just to get home.

      More nationalisation, a national joke.

  5. Clough
    April 22, 2024

    Unlike governments, private industry has to think longer-term, beyond the next local or national elections. When it comes to investment in future production, they have to plan within the policy framework the state lays down. The politically decided net zero policy framework adopted by all traditional parties was the future, and it looked like ICE vehicles had no place in it. So European car manufacturers naturally went all-in with EVs. Now they have to promote EV uses for all their worth, because it’s all they’re allowed to do.

    The alternative to what has happened, as Sir John says, would have been to let the market decide. Go big on EVs if that’s what the public want. But the politicians (including ‘Dave’ Cameron, then opposition leader) decided to impose the Climate Change Act, and everyone had to fall in line and reduce carbon emissions. We knew just a year after it was passed, thanks to the climategate emails, that the whole thing was a racket, yet none of the traditional parties wanted to say “the Climate Emperor has no clothes”.

    The EV scam has been part of the great illusion, for over a decade now, that we were all being virtuous and saving the planet. Now the bills are starting to arrive and we’re looking more critically at what we signed up to. I hope it’s not too late.

    1. Lifelogic
      April 22, 2024

      Indeed net zero by 2050 is totally impractical and totally unaffordable but still Coutino and Sunak plan to head off the cliff. Plus EV cars increase CO2 anyway on average so better to keep your old car and save all the fossil fuel energy needed to build the new EV if CO2 were a problem. It is not as CO2 plant, tree and crop food is actually good thing on balance.

  6. Bryan Harris
    April 22, 2024

    Good points:

    Car companies spend plenty of money on EV car ads trying to make them look the thing to have .They never talk about running costs. How much does it cost to recharge? What happens to insurance costs? What is the true range? How long will the battery last? How quickly does battery performance deteriorate? How easy is it to repair a damaged battery car?

    HMG think they can impose anything they want through legislation – no matter how much they imagine they have the moral high ground it is still wrong, bordering on oppression.

    Instead of sending billions to Ukraine and many millions to other countries, why doesn’t HMG invest effectively in our energy infrastructure? I’m not taking about silly windmills!
    Better still, they should stop forcing manufacturers to sell a specific number of EVs and allow them to further enhance petrol cars, that would make them far more green than EVs.

  7. David Andrews
    April 22, 2024

    UK politicians, with a few notable exceptions, are up the creek without a paddle on this issue. They have tried to brainwash everyone that the transition to EVs will “save the planet” whereas the reality is it will ruin it. None of the numbers add up. Unfortunately their financial and technical illiteracy means they are utterly clueless about what to do even thought the solution is staring them in the face: repeal the Climate Change Act and abandon the mad dash to Net Zero. Sooner or later voters will have their say but not before billions will have been wasted.

    1. Lifelogic
      April 22, 2024


  8. Bingle
    April 22, 2024

    “Governments need to do more to deliver enough affordable renewable electricity”

    Why in the UK must the energy have to be renewable when we are less than 1% responsible for global emissions?

    Surely not from wind and solar which are both extremely unreliable, and we seem to be decades away from building enough Nuclear Plants.

    It is time that the green blob, and politicians, got a grip on reality. Campaign if they must but do it in the countries that are the main polluters!

    1. Christine
      April 22, 2024

      I agree plus renewables are not good for the environment when you take into account the damage from their installation and the landfill needed once they are decommissioned. I live in a beautiful part of England but it is due to be ruined on the alter of net zero. Seems BP can destroy our sand dunes and prime farmland without the locals consent just because it’s for renewable energy. I hate what our politicians have done to my country and I will never forgive them.

    2. miami.mode
      April 22, 2024

      Terms such as renewables, far right, small boats, and asylum seekers are typical of those that are normally generated by left-wingers to give a respectable name to the reality that they disagree with and are often the precise opposite of the term used.

    3. Original Richard
      April 22, 2024

      Bingle :

      Whilst I agree with your remarks on renewable and nuclear energy I’m afraid I disagree with your view that CO2 is a pollutant.

      CO2 is not a pollutant but a very necessary trace gas in our atmosphere without which no life on the planet could survive. 9 times over the last 800,000 years CO2 has dropped to 180 ppm just 30ppm above the level below which plants and then all life on the planet dies. The current level of 430 ppm is far below the level it has been over the last 500m years since the Cambrian Explosion and the burning of hydrocarbon fuels is merely returning to the atmosphere the CO2 which has been locked up in the earth’s crust over millions of years. The result is a greening planet which has allowed more food to be produced, which in addition to a gentle warming as we exit the Little Ice Age is of benefit to all life on earth.

      Note that the climate activists have no issue with China emitting CO2, because they know increasing CO2 is not a problem and because China is already an authoritarian state.

      1. Bingle
        April 22, 2024

        I do not believe that CO2 is a pollutant and I do know that the CO2 level in the atmosphere is towards the lowest that it has been for hundreds of thousands of years, when the Earth was warmer and much greener. There are other more cogent reasons which affect the climate and these are well documented.

        Saying so, however, is like a red rag to a bull for the net zero evangelists.

  9. David Cooper
    April 22, 2024

    When we consider, alongside the drawbacks of EVs, the legislative ban on the purchase of new ICE vehicles, a decision of the ludicrous Grant Shapps which the equally ludicrous Ed Miliband is desperate to inflict sooner and more harshly, it becomes all the more evident that no one cares about JRM’s observation that politics should not be about making people’s lives difficult. This is nothing remotely to do with “saving the planet”: it is naked political aggression.

  10. Original Richard
    April 22, 2024

    EVs, expensive, impractical and dangerous are another electrical device designed by the feudal WEF and Marxists, together with intermittent supplies of expensive renewable energy, to impoverish and control.

    Although the complete ban on ices has been moved to 2035, they will still be subject to fines of £15K on each ice vehicle sold above a quota which declines to 20% by 2030.

    Any vote for any existing Parliamentary party will be seen by them as a vote to continue with Net Zero and high immigration.

    So the only way out of this hole is through referendums although the recent turn around in Wales on 20 mph speed limits gives hope that a large petition may succeed as a referendum is unlikely to be willingly organised.

    There is no climate crisis. The IPCC WG1 (“the science”) calculates just 1 degree C of warming from a doubling of CO2 (in 160 years at the current rate) and can find no signal for climate change beyond natural variability other than some slight warming. See Table 12 in Chapter 12. Check the data yourself rather than believing the oceans are boiling (Al Gore) and the planet is boiling (UN Sec Gen).

    1. hefner
      April 22, 2024

      A year of rain (10 in) in Dubai on one day (18/04/2024, edition.cnn.com ‘Chaos in Dubai as UAE records heaviest rain in 75 years’) must be a sign that the atmosphere gets drier, doesn’t it?

    2. David+L
      April 22, 2024

      Does an increase in CO2 increase the global temperature or does an increase in global temperature (from the Sun) increase the amount of CO2? I have listened to different Climate scientists putting both hypotheses forward, each with absolute certainty. Who is telling the truth? After the cascade of untruths foisted on us during the “pandemic” and seeing how the “thugs in suits” operated in the Post Office outrage I’m so disillusioned with experts and media stories that I’m inclined to assume that every policy and decision is about someone or some corporation acquiring wealth.

      1. Berkshire Alan
        April 23, 2024


        That is certainly the feeling many of us have been left with, given that the science has not been proven or settled.
        Politicians can do little to control the power of the sun, and do not want to control the growth in population, both probable large causes of so called (global warming) changing climate..

  11. Walt
    April 22, 2024

    Sir John,
    Your key words here, “Governments … have not been straight with the public.” Again.

  12. Ian B
    April 22, 2024

    Sir John
    Remove the taxpayer funding i.e. having those that can’t afford these cars subsiding those that can and what have you got?
    How many petrol stations have the taxpayer had to fund, then how many charging stations are the taxpayer forced to fund.
    Governments have to stop the falsehood of suggesting they are funding things, when it is the taxpayer that is faced with bill
    It is not a level playing field.

  13. Berkshire Alan
    April 22, 2024

    Battery technology has not yet caught up with the Governments Race to go all EV.
    The recharging infrastructure has not yet caught up with the race to go EV.
    The European motor industry (which employs Millions of People) may well die if Governments continue to want to move ahead of technological development. China will love that !
    The stupidity of Governments knows no bounds.
    Next they will be narrowing our roads to encompass Bike lanes that cyclists refuse to use, Oh wait a minute !
    It is not state of the art, it is State Control

  14. glen cullen
    April 22, 2024

    The target buyer for an EV has always been the Rich’n Famous & the Greens …funded by the taxpayer
    Our government doesn’t understand that the people don’t want nor buys into net-zero or EVs

  15. IanT
    April 22, 2024

    I have no problem in principle to EVs (and even less to Hybrids) but Government should back out and let the consumer decide. I purchased an ICE vehicle two years ago and will keep it for some years to come. If I’m still driving when I decide to replace it, then I will look at my options then and decide what best suits my needs and pocket.

    As an aside, I have always purchased my cars, whether from new or used. But if I ever decided to go with an EV, I think I would probably lease it. I am now on my fourth mobile phone and when the battery died (or it would no update to the latest Whats App) I just discarded them. It’s a bit harder to do that with an EV…

  16. Ed
    April 22, 2024

    Thinking about EV’s for about 2 seconds.
    How do you charge your car if you live in a block of flats?
    How do you charge your car if you can’t park outside your house?
    Are all pavements going to be obstacle courses of cables?
    Who is going to pay for the upgrade required to domestic supply?
    Where is the extra energy going to come from?
    Is our mobility going to be dependent on the weather?
    Etc Etc Etc
    Clearly there is some thing else going on here.

    1. glen cullen
      April 22, 2024

      hear hear

    2. Original Richard
      April 22, 2024

      Ed :

      The purpose of evs is to drastically reduce private car ownership and mobility so the questions you are asking will disappear.

  17. a-tracy
    April 22, 2024

    To be honest we’re having more problems with so called upgraded cleaner diesel engines, we have had to start writing vehicles off at 120,000 when they used to do 180,000 because engine replacements are too expensive. Ad blue and the new cleansing system, regular DPF regens etc causing frequent breakdowns and limp mode, the AA and RAC are keeping quiet about this, why? It must be costing them a fortune in recovery.

    I’m happy with my locally used battery car; I wouldn’t like it if I had to make frequent long-distance journeys. I leased it to return it if I didn’t like it, as I used to keep my cars for 18 years or so. Recharging at night on cheaper energy is very cost-efficient; not going to the fuel station is heaven. But I worry about the battery replacement cost in these cars in the second-hand market. As more fleets took on hybrid and electric vehicles there will be less second hand coming through the resale market chains in a couple of years.

  18. Bert+Young
    April 22, 2024

    I would not have an electric car for 2 reasons ; firstly my present normal petrol Nissan is extremely economic and secondly I believe the future power resource will be hydrogen driven vehicles . In my ” late years ” I do not drive very much relying on my wife to substitute for me ; the traffic volume on the roads in my neighbourhood is enormous – enough to put any one off .

    1. Lifelogic
      April 23, 2024

      But we have no hydrogen mines (or virtually none) so it has to be manufactured which is a hugely energy inefficient and costly process be it green or grey. Plus hydrogen is hard and expensive to store and deliver safely.

  19. Rod Evans
    April 22, 2024

    It is clear to anyone who has looked into the current vehicle choices EVs are a niche market.
    Government grant folly supposed to advance the EV market and curtail the ICE powered vehicles by destroying auto manufacturing in this country is bizarre and very damaging to UK economically.
    The only supplier of EVs that will be left standing is China. That will be the case because China has captured the mineral rights and manufacturing processes, mostly lithium production worldwide.
    The only result of this UK government state interference in the free market will be the destruction of car use and manufacturing in general, here in the UK.
    Not very good is it?

  20. davidinshaftesbury
    April 22, 2024

    The Australians have hydrogen cars and lorries in deployment, and the real future is pollution free Nuclear Fusion. The UK has a major role in the world development of free and cheap NF where 60% of scientists believe deployment is possible by 2035 and 90% by 2040. This is about the same timespan as building new gas fired power stations or Chinese funded nuclear power stations. Even currently, the grid needs massive expansion at an estimated cost in stages by 2030 and 2035 of £60bn, whilst Greg Jackson, CEO of Octopus energy is sitting on £bn’s of projects for adding renewable energy to the grid and given connection dates of 2035!! He is looking to take projects to France and Germany. All this needs fixing before we even look at EVs with the rediculous personal investment in an EV car for all the reasons described before we even look at installing heat pumps in a 25 story block of flats. There is simply not enough science and engineering experience in the Civil Service or Parliament heading up the rediculous unachievable net zero targets. One suggestion is to start with installing solar panels on new builds with flood management on which there is no regulation on builders !

    1. Original Richard
      April 22, 2024

      davidinshaftesbury : “Even currently, the grid needs massive expansion at an estimated cost in stages by 2030 and 2035 of £60bn…..”

      The figure requested by the National Grid is £220bn :

      And the cost to upgrade the local grids is at least the double again.

      1. Sakara Gold
        April 23, 2024

        @Original Richard
        What a really stupid and deluded post. Obviously what we need to do is stop growing our economy in case we need more electricity, pull down the NIMBY electricity transmission pylons and give everyone diesel generators, blow up the N Sea windfarms and solar installations (which produced roughly 40% of our electricity last winter) because they get in the way of drilling for more oil.

        Thank goodness Labour’s Green Plan will be implemented after they win the Jan 2025 election. After which I suggest that a prolonged period of silence from your pen would be appropriate

  21. Mark
    April 22, 2024

    There is an interesting consequence of the failure ov the EV market to meet growth projections. There is now a surplus of battery supply, which is leading to falling prices as Chinese manufacturers try to liquidate excess stocks, with capacity being taken by the grid battery industry, a new market for CATL, the big Chinesebattery manufacturer. However, returns for grid batteries are under pressure because there is a limited technical need for short duration storage and the economics of long duration don’t stack up.

    The result as we saw previously with solar panels will be an industry shakeout, followed by a return to mire economic, higher pricing.

  22. formula57
    April 22, 2024

    The car market is being badly distorted to harm many participants by the government’s demand that 22 per cent. of all manufacturers’ new car sales ZEVs in 2024, rising to 28% in 2025, 33% in 2025, 38% in 2027, 52% in 2028, 66% in 2029, 80% in 2030 and finally 100% in 2035.

    Manufacturers are fined for non-compliance (£15,000 per vehicle I saw said for one brand) so punish dealers by withholding the normal volume bonuses and consumers are discouraged from selecting ICE vehicles by long lead times to delivery and an absence of hitherto common price discounts. Worse will be quotas for ICE availability with dealers refusing to make sales towards the end of a year as they try to make their percentage ratio. If they also refuse to take orders until 1st., January of the next year we can expect even more distortions to the aggravation of ICE buyers.

  23. Chris S
    April 22, 2024

    The European car industry is heading for disaster unless the EU and the UK adopt Trump-style 37.5% tariffs on Chinese-built EVs and we drop the penal fines to be levied on manufacturers who fail to sell sufficient EVs, even though we all know that hardly any private buyers are going to buy them.
    Anyone who has to tow a caravan or trailer or needs a large car is still better off buying a Cat 6 diesel than a petrol car. My own 3 litre, twin turbo, Audi A7 does 50mpg driving down to the Alps in winter, has a range of 630 miles and takes 4 minutes to “recharge.”
    It cost me almost half the price of their equivalent eTron GT which has a real world range of only 230 miles in summer. In Winter, a driver would need to look for a working, free charging point after only 150 miles. Not mu h good for crossing continents !

    When an EV can meet those stats at a reasonable cost, I might just consider one.
    I’m not going to start holding my breath anytime soon!

    1. Berkshire Alan
      April 23, 2024


  24. Derek
    April 22, 2024

    I still fail to understand the logic applied to the net-zero crusade, when we are merely a very low emitter (at 0.8%) within the global emitting fraternity, which has, at the top, China, who spews out around 32% of the global total. We do not need to cut any more until those others, the biggest offenders, have done their bit to catch us up.

    1. Hat man
      April 23, 2024

      The ‘logic’, Derek, is surely to reduce private vehicle ownership and mobility to the few, not the many. That fits the WEF’s plans for our future. It’s important to give up on any idea we may have that our rulers are benevolent people who want to improve our standard of living and opportunities in life. That may have been the case in the time of Soviet communism, when Western elites were concerned that that model might look a more attractive option to voters. That’s not the case now, so the ideology can shift from giving people a better life, to ‘saving the planet’. Ordinary folk will need to forget cheap energy, cars and foreign holidays that they once enjoyed thanks to living in the Free West consumer economies. The logic is the same, keeping elites in power, in control of resources, and in control of of the dominant narrative.

      1. Derek
        April 23, 2024

        You maybe be correct, but I see the logic as another serious power grab over us British citizens. Around 50 years ago, the planet was going to suffer another ice age, but that was a no show, so the same orgs switched their emphasis to AGW and pointed at CO2 and Carbon as being the most alarming dangers to us. Never mind the truth that without those two available on the planet, they would be no life here at all.
        It’s all in producing the “Fear Factor” into our lives to have a big hold over us. Look what they did to us during the Covid Crisis and what damage they laid upon this country in doing so yet no heads rolled. It’s why the civil service is keen to get us under the neo-USSR with Brussels mafia and their civil servants, in control again. We’re treated as their zombies who need controlling.

  25. John Hatfield
    April 22, 2024

    “It is not green to scrap a petrol or diesel car early and make a new battery car to replace it. It is not green to run a battery car recharging it with fossil fuel electricity.”
    It is not green to reduce the amount of atmospheric CO2.

    1. Lifelogic
      April 23, 2024


  26. formula57
    April 22, 2024

    Meanwhie in China “Automobile manufacturing utilization rates fell below 65% in the first quarter: well below their previous low (excluding the first quarter of 2020) of 69.1% in mid-2016” (per the Wall Steet Journal, 16th April 2024).

  27. David Frank Paine
    April 22, 2024

    Hydrogen ICEs are being developed so EVs will have stiff competition.

  28. Reform_Now
    April 23, 2024

    It’s all just another excuse to tax us more.

    ICE cars get hit for CO2 band road tax. Green levies on energy. Etc etc.

    1. Moulton howe
      April 23, 2024

      Buy a new diesel car just before they ban petrol vehicles. Electric lorries and farm machinery are not viable so diesel will always be available. Alternatively buy an old Merc that is simple to maintain and run it on vegetable oil. Cuba here we come.

  29. Sakara Gold
    April 23, 2024

    Why do you selectively quote inaccurate, exagerated and indeed distorted figures for the introduction of EV’s onto Europe’s roads? Of course, today’s piece reflects Sir John’s pro-ICE and anti-EV views – however, almost every statement above can be challenged

    Electric and plug-in hybrid car sales will jump to a new global record in 2024 despite slowing growth in some markets, according to forecasts from the influential International Energy Agency. The IEA says 17m electric vehicles will be sold this year, up more than 20% compared with 2023

    The IEA also said most electric cars will cost the same as petrol equivalents by 2030 as prices drop.

    Reply Why do you add in hybrids when my piece was clearly about battery EVs? Hybrids often run on fossil fuels

  30. Linda Brown
    April 23, 2024

    I would say safety is the biggest problem with these cars. When you know you can be burnt up to crackling and fire brigades cannot put out the fire, you are not encouraged to buy one. They are too expensive and fiddly to deal with recharging. Waste of time and space if you ask me. I have just invested in a new second hand petrol car and intend to keep it for as long as possible. If I am forced to get rid of it, then I should be old enough to buy an old age wheel chair or such like so it won’t bother me. I have never liked electric windows in case I go into water and cannot open them. I still want the wind up windows back. Never going to happen I know, but I can dream.

  31. Stred
    April 23, 2024

    This article analyses the reason for the hugely different take up of electric cars as fleet and company leases and privately owned. The subsidy comes from the different tax allowances. An equivalent ICE car can cost thousands more than the electric version and then pay zero charges I ULEZ and congestion zones.

    Perhaps you could raise this as a subject in the blog.

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