Former US president Donald Trump’s recent rally speech gets attention as he talks about various topics. Among them was his opinion on EVs, and how he is unhappy with Tesla’s Elon Musk. Adds that he is suddenly no longer a supporter of EVs. Journalist Aaron Rupar stated on Twitter that Trump’s claims on EVs are an “anti-electric car rant”.
At any rate, let’s hone in here on Trump’s rant about EVs. He starts by touting how good things were when he was in office. He talks about gas costs being $1.87 per gallon. However, he made this claim a few times in the past, and fact-checkers quickly ruled that it was false. Trump goes on to say his administration wasn’t talking about going to all-electric cars. However, he showed them off at The White House and raved about them during his presidency. He also had Tesla CEO Elon Musk on one of his special advisory boards, though Musk left after Trump pulled out of the Paris Climate Accord. Trump says EVs are “twice as expensive,” and they only get like “38 miles per gallon.” Electric cars and SUVs are known to cost more than similar gas-powered cars. But not twice as much, because they save money on fuel and maintenance.
The speech moves to a story about a friend of Trump’s who used his EV to travel from Kentucky to Washington DC. Trump said his friend complained about the road trip taking way too long due to the car’s range and the time it took to charge. This could very well be true, and it has a whole lot to do with the lack of charging infrastructure in the US. The current administration is aware of the problem with charging infrastructure and it’s already working to fix it. Now that Trump has been made aware of the concerns, he could also work to help Americans by fixing it, especially if he were to get voted back into The White House. It’s more likely that Trump will work to have them eliminated. Because, in the speech, he does say we need to get rid of electric vehicles. According to Kelley Blue Book, the average new car price in July 2022 was over $48,000, while the average cost for a new electric vehicle is over 64,000 as of spring 2022. However, while these statements are not accurate now, they could turn some customers off from electric vehicles, especially if they are new to the concept. According to a survey of over 8,000 adults by Consumer Reports, 36% either plan to lease or buy an electric vehicle or are seriously considering doing so. But, if the remarks made during this rally greatly influenced some consumers, then it could soften some perceptions — depending on their political leanings.