Mark Reuss believes the future is electric.
Like Tesla, General Motors believes the future of automotive is electrically powered. However, GM's president, Mark Reuss, has put pen to paper in an opinion piece for CNN explaining what issues need to be solved before all-electric cars can go mainstream. He says it's not a question of if all-electric vehicles will irrevocably change the automotive landscape, but when. In his opinion piece, Reuss points out the major obstacles are still range, cost, and the charging infrastructure that will give drivers the peace of mind to charge when and where they wish.
According to Reuss, the biggest hurdle right now is range. More charging stations won't change that. "Just as demand for gas mileage doesn't go down when there are more gas stations," he says, "demand for better range won't ease even as charging infrastructure improves." According to GM, 300 miles of range is the average electric car needs to be, and Reuss claims consumers surveyed during its clinics bear out that number. Doing the math, that would tie-up with the average miles per year American's drive, and show they only want to charge once per week or less.
For GM, the 2020 Chevy Bolt is close to that number, with a range of 259 miles on a charge. However, the cost of entry into the sub-compact car is $36,620 before any rebates. The other hurdle, after the initial cost, is the charging infrastructure, and Reuss says that to "gain widespread acceptance, manufacturers, charging companies, industry groups, and governments at all levels must work together to make public charging available in as many locations as possible." He points out that this is happening, but "private charging stations are just as important," and GM wants to see partnerships that make installing charging stations in homes convenient and affordable.