Auto dealers urge Biden to ‘tap the brakes’ on ‘unrealistic’ EV mandate: ‘Enthusiasm has stalled’

News & Politics

A coalition of nearly 4,000 car dealerships signed an open letter to President Biden, urging the administration to “tap the brakes” on its “unrealistic” electric vehicle mandate.

By 2030, the administration aims to have 60% of new vehicle sales be EVs. Currently, only 7% of new vehicles sold are EVs.

A group of more than 3,880 automobile dealerships in all 50 states collectively selling all major vehicle manufacturing brands called on the federal government to reconsider its aggressive move to EVs.

“Your Administration has proposed regulations that would essentially mandate a dramatic shift to battery electric vehicles (BEVs), increasing year after year until 2032, when two out of every three vehicles sold in America would have to be battery electric,” the car dealers wrote. “The reality, however, is that electric vehicle demand today is not keeping up with the large influx of BEVs arriving at our dealerships prompted by the current regulations.”

The open letter to the president noted that there are many options for consumers interested in EVs, but the waning “hope and hype” has caused the vehicles to start “stacking up on our lots” despite “deep price cuts, manufacturer incentives, and generous government incentives,” they stated. “That enthusiasm has stalled.”

The auto dealers argued that the federal government’s EV mandate is “unrealistic based on current and forecasted customer demand.” They explained that many consumers are “simply not ready” to move away from gas- and diesel-powered vehicles, partly due to EVs being “unaffordable.”

Additionally, the car dealers argued that many customers do not have easy access to public charging stations or the ability to charge vehicles at their residences. Consumers have also voiced concerns to dealers about the driving range of EVs, particularly in extreme temperatures.

“Today’s current technology is not adequate to support the needs of the majority of our consumers,” the auto dealers continued. “Many of these challenges can and will be addressed by our manufacturers, but many of these challenges are outside of their control. Reliable charging networks, electric grid stability, sourcing of materials, and many other issues need time to resolve. And finally, many people just want to make their own choice about what vehicle is right for them.”

The coalition of dealers called on Biden to “tap the brakes on the unrealistic government electric vehicle mandate” and instead “allow time” for the technology to advance, for the vehicles to become more affordable, for the U.S. to source its own minerals for the batteries, and for adequate charging infrastructure to be built.

“And most of all, allow time for the American consumer to get comfortable with the technology and make the choice to buy an electric vehicle,” the car dealers concluded.

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