June 10, 2018

YOUR MOM'S NEXT CAR WILL BE A VOLT:

Demand for Electric SUVs Not Being Met (Mark Phelan, 6/10/18, Detroit Free Press)

While customers clamor for more SUVs like the Toyota RAV4, Ford Edge, Chevrolet Traverse and Honda HR-V and as electric-drive technology advances rapidly, it's virtually impossible to find an electric or plug-in hybrid vehicle in the fast growing urban-utility vehicle segment.

Mitsubishi builds the world's best-selling plug-in hybrid SUV. Mitsubishi, for crying out loud.

That's no knock on the Outlander, but it demonstrates a shocking bankruptcy of imagination at Chevy, Ford, Honda, Hyundai, Toyota and Volkswagen. Each of those brands literally builds millions more vehicles than tiny Mitsubishi. But the little brand with the triple-diamond badge was the only one that understood: At the intersection of growing environmental awareness and soaring SUV sales lay a new class of vehicles that deliver the height and room of an SUV and run on batteries at least some of the time. Most people buying urban utilities don't care about off-road ability or towing capacity. Half of them probably aren't sure if they've got all-wheel drive.

They just want to sit up high, see what's around them and have a big space behind the rear seat.

A meaningful number would love to plug in for their daily driving and slash how often they have to buy gas, but the leading automakers have declined to build plug-ins and EVs with the height and room that made SUVs a hit.

Posted by at June 10, 2018 6:39 AM

  

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