When the Labor Party announced their policy of having 50% of all new car sales being electric vehicles by 2030, the galloping stupidity of members of the Coalition front bench and their acolytes became manifest in their response. Firstly, it was Murdoch hack Caroline Overington who made a complete fool of herself by demonstrating that she knew nothing about electric vehicles, their specifications, their usage or their history while pontificating about that history, their specifications and their usage1. Secondly, it was another Murdoch hack, Chris Kenny, accompanied by Prime Minister Scott Morrison who gave details about charging times of electric vehicles despite being unaware of the reality of electric vehicle charging times2. Unlike Kenny and Morrison, Bill Shorten actually knew what he was talking about. Morrison also stated that Bill Shorten wanted to “end the weekend” presumably because electric vehicles need a couple of days off per week. Following this, Taylor joined in the stupidity, telling lies again about charging and appending the word ‘tax’ to everything to do with electric vehicles.
As if this idiocy from Overington, Kenny, Morrison and Taylor wasn’t enough, the funniest of all was the idiotic Michaelia Cash who stated in her standard, rabidly screaming style that all apprentices were going to be forced to drive electric vehicles and some brands of tradies’ utes were going to be banned5.
The event that brought all these lies to mind was the unveiling of Tesla’s new electric ute, the Cybertruck. The base version has a single motor, will start at $US39,900 (~$A58,000), good for 400 kilometres of range, a tow rating of 3.4 tonnes, and a 0-100 kph time of 6.5 seconds. The dual motor $US49,000 (~$A72,000) version can tow 4.5 tonnes and reach 100 kph in 4.5 seconds, with 500 kilometres of range. The top of the line variant, with three motors, starts at $US69,900 (~$A102,000), will go more than 800 kilometres between charges, do 0-100 kph in under 6 seconds, tow up to 6.3 tonnes. These vehicles are slated to start production in late 20216.
As a comparison, a Ford Ranger dual cab ute has a base model price of $A35,500 and a top of the range price of $A69,0007, so the Cybertruck is much more expensive than your average dual cab ute. However the Cybertruck is much cheaper to run, service and maintain. However, prices of electric vehicles are dropping (-13.4% from 2018-2019), unlike the prices of fossil-fuelled cars which are climbing (+2% over the same period)8. Electric vehicles will take over the market faster than the buffoons in the Coalition can even imagine, and any tradie who sticks to his diesel or petrol vehicle will be left behind.