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The Great Electric Car Swindle

It’s been a long time since I last wrote about my experience of living with an electric car, that’s not because life has got any easier, it hasn’t. The fact that I have not travelled much in the past 9 months has not led to a reduction in the issues I have had with Marvin (some of you may not be old enough to get that reference, if you can, why not drop me a comment) it hasn’t. So, I thought I would update you all on my recent experiences and add share a thought or two.  

Malcolm MacLaren

In may come as a surprise that back in the day, almost pre-history but definitely pre-21st century, I was a punk. An original punk in that I was around in late 1976 at the time of the infamous Grundy Show Incident, when the Sex Pistols spoke so many profanities on TV that the late, great Mary Whitehouse (13 June 1910 – 23 November 2001) was incandescent with rage. The 1st of December 1976 has gone down in history as the date the music and generational movement of Punk Rock was exposed to the masses. One of the interesting things about that movement, if you can call it such, was what happened in 1980 when their manager, the equally infamous Malcolm MacLaren (22 January 1946 - 8 April 2010), released a movie basically stating that punk rock was all a hoax and that he created the Sex Pistols and manipulated them to the top of the music business, using them as puppets to both further his own agenda and to claim the financial rewards from the various record labels the band were signed to during their brief existence such as EMI, A&M, Virgin, and Warner Bros. Records. "Cash from Chaos" was the term he used. So, the fashion, music taste, attitude, and ideology of millions of teenagers (this spotty oik one of them) and young adults was a hoax. I had been had!

It seems that some 45 years latter it has happened to me again, this time by the masters of my adult destiny, the UK Government and it host of unelected advisors. Yes, I am a victim of The Great Electric Car Swindle where like millions of others I was encouraged to throw off the shackles of the environmentally evil fossil fuelled vehicles of the old age and embrace the new age of electric vehicular travel that is kind to dear old planet earth, whilst being gentle on one’s pocket. Over the past three years I have written quite a bit about my experiences of sharing my travelling life with an electric car so I will not cover old ground and say why they are not what they are made out to be, but let me just me refute somewhat the eutopia that I am supposed to be part of:

  • They are not ethical: the metals in the battery are farmed by children in appalling conditions from artisan mines in third world countries.

  • They are not environmentally friendly: the omissions to make the batteries are arguably greater compared to conventional cars, the metals are harmful to the environment especially when being disposed of.

  • They are not kind on your pocket: charging my car costs significantly more than a petrol equivalent.

As my car reaches the end of its contract the degradation of battery performance is notable. I have never been able to charge it to the claimed 240 miles, 210 was the most I managed when it was brand new, and now after 3-years I cannot charge it beyond 180 miles, or 75% of its claimed capacity. This is no doubt due to the frequent charging of the vehicle which I am led to understand negatively impacts the life of the battery. When the car finally does go back in December of this year I have decided to take the retrograde step of going to a mild-hybrid as I learnt something the other day when I sat in my brothers new car; you don’t need to buy an electric car to benefit from some of the amazing technologies that I was made to believe were one of the benefits of opting for an electric vehicle, these are all readily available in the conventional equivalent. I am beginning to feel that I, like the Sex Pistols, been used as a puppets further someone else’s agenda

The opinions and thoughts shared in this article are solely of the author and are not to be construed as those those of Sumo Technologies Ltd or any of its officers.

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