In a recent report, NBC’s Adrienne Broaddus explored the challenges faced by EV owners as sub-zero temperatures have gripped the nation. The frustrations faced by EV owners have taken center stage, with major automakers like Ford scaling back electric vehicle production. Here’s the full story.

Slowdown in the Electric Vehicle Revolution

Broaddus shared that last April the Environmental Protection Agency outlined an ambitious plan to transition all cars to electric by 2032.

However, as of 2023, only about 8% of vehicles on the road were electric. The video added that the recent news of a major automaker cutting electric vehicle production, coupled with ongoing frustrations of EV owners dealing with cold weather challenges, suggested a potential slowdown in the electric vehicle revolution.

The Effects of Freezing Temperatures

Broaddus cited that the recent Netflix movie “Leave the World Behind” showed driverless vehicles causing chaos after a cyberattack. However, in the real world, EV drivers contended with a different kind of nightmare brought on by sub-zero temperatures.

EVs relied on lithium batteries, and in freezing temperatures, these batteries struggled to maintain their performance. Drivers reported being stranded at charging stations for extended periods as their batteries failed to charge adequately. The video shared that in Chicago, tow truck businesses experienced an uptick in calls from EV owners whose batteries dropped to zero before they could recharge.

According to AAA, the driving range of EVs decreased by 41% when the temperature dropped to 20 degrees Fahrenheit, especially when the car’s heater or AC was running. Unlike gasoline-powered vehicles that also lost range in the cold, the impact on EVs was significantly more pronounced.

Switching to Gas

Broaddus shared the example of Marcus Campbell who said he picked the worst time to become an Uber driver. He added, “Every trip is taking about an hour and a half. You have to wait for the other cars to get through charging to even get to the charger.”

Broaddus highlighted one major obstacle exacerbating the cold weather challenges for EVs was the lack of charging infrastructure. While there were around 160,000 chargers nationwide, one in five drivers reported encountering broken charging stations. She added that the United States currently lacks the necessary infrastructure to support the growing number of electric vehicles on the road.

Concerns About Charging Infrastructure

Recognizing this issue, the Biden administration recently announced $623 million in grants to build a nationwide electric vehicle charging network. The goal was to install 500,000 publicly available chargers by 2030, enhancing accessibility and reliability for EV owners.

However, Broaddus stated that although EV sales hit records, there was a recent slowdown, with Ford announcing a reduction in production of the electric F-150. She concluded and said that consumers, concerned about charging infrastructure and the limitations of EVs in extreme weather, were increasingly turning to hybrid vehicles.

You Can’t Carry Extra Electricity in an Electric Car

Several YouTube users also shared their thoughts on the incident.

One user wrote, “Until you can fill it up in five minutes and go 400 miles GUARANTEED NO MATTER WHAT, EVs are going nowhere. Plus, you can carry extra gas in a gas car. You can’t carry extra electricity in an electric car.”

Another user added, “I live in frigid Canada in the winter and I’m not in a rush to switch to an EV vehicle due to this reason. They really didn’t think this through rushing ahead with this technology. Winter is a real issue in many countries.”

So what do you think? In light of the challenges faced by EV owners, do you believe the current infrastructure and technology are sufficient to support the widespread adoption of EVs or are further advancements needed?