Tucson group makes presentation on electric cars
Apr 10, 2018  John Gutekunst 


They roared into town the afternoon of April 6, but they hardly made a
sound. That’s because their cars were electrics. Members of the Tucson
Electric Vehicle Association paid a visit to the Parker Regional Chamber of
Commerce and Tourism to spread the word about electric vehicles, and one of
the points they made was how quiet they are.

The electric vehicle visitors from Tucson included the association’s
president, Dave Gebert; the founder, Jerry Asher, and a volunteer, Steve
Parkhurst. They offered rides in a Tesla Model S in order to show how quiet
they are, how well they handle, and their acceleration.

Pankhurst said the group traveled around Arizona to provide information
about electric vehicles. He said it’s a better technology than conventional
internal combustion engines, and they are cleaner and do not produce a lot
of pollution. The Tesla models were agile and quick, and among the fastest
production cars on the market.

One of the people who took a ride was Parker Mayor Dan Beaver, who also owns
the Parker Motor Company, a Ford dealership. He said he was impressed.

“It has enormous acceleration,” he said. “It’s nice. I always wanted to ride
in a Tesla.”

The Parker Motor Company sponsored the visit.

Asher addressed some of the fears that people have regarding electric
vehicles. These include the cost, the ability to find places to charge up
the car, and “range anxiety;” the fear the vehicle will give out with a dead
battery over long distances.

While Tesla recently opened a charging station in Quartzsite for people
traveling between Los Angeles or San Diego and Phoenix, Asher said an
electric car can be charged from any 110-120 volt outlet, the same found in
any home or business. For faster charging, they can be charged from a
220-240 volt outlet, like those used for stoves or washing machines and

Asher said today’s electric vehicles are designed to travel hundreds of
miles on a charge. He added there are hybrids that have both an electric and
gasoline engine.

As for the price, Gebert said the electricity for an average electric car
will cost you one-quarter the cost you would pay for gasoline.

The cost of new electric vehicles is another matter. Parkhurst said the
Tesla Model S sells for $100,000 and is considered a “high end” vehicle. He
said they are working on the Model 3, which should sell for $35,000.

According to information in the January 2017 issue of Current EVents, a
survey by Altman, Vilandrie & Co. found an electric car priced at $35,000
would sell five times as many vehicles as Tesla’s current models.

Asher said that, given the tax incentives and rebates, one could purchase a
used electric car for $7,500.

A major problem with electrics, Gebert said, was the lack of variety in the
vehicles available. There are a lot of sedans, but no SUVs or pickup trucks.
While there are currently 700 models of cars available in the United States,
only 30 are electrics, and some of those are only available in California.

“We’re really just starting out with electric cars,” he said.

Beaver said he believes electric vehicles are the way things are going, and
he said Ford Motor Company executives are “very motivated” to get into the
electric vehicle business.

Chamber Director Mary Hamilton thanked the electric vehicle people from
Tucson for their presentation.

Hamilton wrote on the chamber’s Facebook page, “The future is here.”
Tucson Electric Vehicle Association

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