Archives

Categories

March 2012
M T W T F S S
« Feb   Apr »
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
262728293031  
CarsDirect.com
Add to Technorati Favorites

Technorati Profile

Coda delivers first EVs: Offers fair plug-in sales forecast

I'm not sure that Coda electric cars will survive into the future, but I respect Coda's opinions and forecasts for the future of plug-in electric car space.

A Coda EV at the LA Auto Show

Code hopes to average 1000 sales per month by December

We live in a world driven by hype and superficial materialism — at least in the US — and it drives me crazy, especially when automakers use hype and halo effects to fight issues like foreign oil dependence. It’s practically treasonous in my zealous opinion.

Thus, I was a little refreshed to learn of EV maker Coda’s beliefs on potential plug-in electric car sales. While a little optimistic, at least they’re reasonable.

Last week Coda delivered its first electric cars to consumers, a monumental and impressive feat for any small automotive startup, especially in the plug-in space. And by the end of the year, Coda hopes it can hit a sales pace of 1,000 plug-in cars per month.

With $10,000 worth of state and federal incentives — for now Coda EVs are only available in California — 1,000 sales per month of the $37,250 electric car seem possible, although only on the high end of projections. There’s simply a lot of competition.

Coda admits that most independent forecasters only see a market of about 60,000 sales per year in the short term, but the market is primed for significant growth. Some plug-in car makers, such as Nissan, believe the market could quickly swell to 10 percent of total auto sales. Coda, on the other hand, would be content with 1 — 2 percent according to Phil Murtaugh, CEO of Coda Holdings via AutoWeek.

In my opinion, achieving 2 percent of sales within the next 5 years is a realistic and achievable plug-in goal. Even though that number sounds small, it would still be a significant technological achievement. Unfortunately, however, it won’t change the world very much.

It’s going to take significant time to mainstream electric cars and even longer for such plug-ins to offer much in the way of US energy independence, or reduced CO2 emissions. And there’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, acknowledging this reality, I believe, is necessary to achieve effective and comprehensive, long term energy policy change. Thus, it’s refreshing to hear EV players like Coda acknowledge the very real difficulties — the struggle ahead — of battery powered change.

The plug-in revolution is unquestionably worth the effort, but it’s going to be a long road. Seldom does over-promising and under-delivering lead to sustainable success in such situations. In fact, such a practice is often the recipe to failure.

Inevitably, plug-ins require consumers to think differently and to honestly assess and understand their real world needs. If consumers can do that, they’ll evermore realize the obvious benefits of electrification, but that won’t be an easy task. Rather it will be a nearly impossible one, especially in the short term — the next decade or so. Unfortunately, hype and over-selling won’t succeed in that effort, only honesty and objective education can truly win that battle.

Leave a Reply