This year already marks a huge milestone on the road to greener personal transportation. News from both General Motors and Tesla promises to deliver mass-market all-electric cars next year that are both practical and affordable. Breaking existing price-performance barriers, both companies promise cars with a range of more than 200 miles on a single charge, at a price (after incentives) of about $30,000.
2017 Chevy Bolt
GM announced that it is making pre-production models of its Chevy Bolt now and that the company expects to begin regular production by the end of 2016. As improbable as it may seem that GM might take a leading role in evolving automobiles away from the internal combustion engine, reviews of the Bolt’s predecessor, the Volt, are hugely favorable – citing a comfortable interior for 5 adults, great performance and “luxury at Chevy prices.”
Tesla Model 3
Tesla just announced its new entry at the $30,000* price level, also with a 200-mile range – the Model 3. Somewhat smaller than Tesla’s existing luxury-priced models, and completely redesigned, the Model 3 had consumers lining up for hours to place a $1,000 deposit on a car they haven’t seen or driven, and which won’t be delivered until late 2017 … if it’s on time.
Useful articles on each model:
23 Electric Vehicles You Can Buy Today
For those who can’t wait a year or two, or who are not yet up to speed on electric vehicles, the Sierra Club put together an excellent guide to the technologies and to 23 all-electric and plug-in electric hybrid models you can buy today. Answer a few questions about your needs and the guide will give you the top models that fit your criteria. Enter your zip code and it will give you info on local tax exemptions, toll reductions, and other incentives for buying electric vehicles. And there is a blog that is incredibly helpful if, like me, you are in the early consideration stage.
Why Electric Vehicles Are Important
When the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency identified the main sources of greenhouse gas emissions, which drive global warming, it placed transportation (at 27% of all emissions) a close second to electricity generation (31% of emissions). Upgrading the environmental soundness of your own transportation is one of the most significant steps you can take personally. Yes, electric vehicles require that electricity be generated to charge their batteries but:
- even with current electricity production (24% of which is still coal-fired), electric vehicles on the road today get the equivalent of 100 miles per gallon, according to the Sierra Club’s guide; and
- you can take 5 minutes and switch the power in your home to 100% renewable sources, further reducing your personal transportation footprint – learn more here.
Even if you’re not ready to reserve your Tesla Model 3 or Chevy Bolt, it’s time to start thinking about a greener car.
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