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Drivers Need a Voice

Kirk's picture

Are you tired of the poor reporting about plug-ins, too? We sure are. The Washington Post recently published a terribly poor editorial - our response follows below.

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To the editors:

Over 50,000 Americans have a very different view than the Washington Post’s recent, surprising portrayal of the GM Volt. We're the people driving the new plug-in electric vehicles being brought to market by over a dozen car companies. We're benefitting from a rebirth of American innovation and leadership in the auto industry that is creating jobs and helping free us from oil by offering us plug-in cars that are fun and great to drive. The Washington Post goes to press just miles away from military hospitals full of soldiers who have born the brutal cost of our oil dependency. What motivates this criticism of American auto innovation when most Americans applaud GM’s decision to take a bold step on new technology? How fast was the initial adoption of the cell phone, the VCR, or the DVR? Who stands behind the very vocal minority so intent on betting against American ingenuity?

Some facts that were missing from the Post editorial:

- Plug-in electric vehicles are now selling at a pace faster than the initial sales for the Toyota Prius when it was first introduced;

- Plug-in sales have tripled this year over last;

- Chevy Volt sales are up fourfold from last year;

- Owners of the new plug-in vehicles consistently rate them as the best in the market;

- the three leading cars - the LEAF, the Volt, the Mitsubishi i-MIEV - have each received multiple awards for quality and innovation.

Auto experts will tell you that car assembly lines regularly shut down to retool for production of various models. The recent Volt plant ramp down was planned, a regular part of the manufacturing process, and not extraordinary. The false repeating of the cost of producing the Volt is simply poor journalism – designing and retooling is always expensive. The first car off any production line may look relatively expensive, but car companies plan for that by recovering their development costs over many years.

Plug-in vehicles are already reshaping the driving experience for tens of thousands of us, with millions more to follow. We invite the Washington Post to listen to today's drivers directly. National Plug In Day (www.pluginday.org) is coming Sept. 23rd with simultaneous EV celebrations in over 60 cities. The D.C. ride-n-drive will be one of the day's biggest. We invite the Post's readers to come learn first-hand about this new day for America.

Plug In America

Electric Auto Association

Sierra Club