Tesla launched its Roadster a few years earlier, but for all intents and purposes, the United States’ age of electric vehicles (EVs) began with the Nissan Leaf in 2011. The market for electric vehicles has come a long way in 10 years, and now shoppers can buy an EV from any number of companies, from the Kia Soul EV to the BMW i3, and from a Tesla Model X to the Chevrolet Bolt. Continue reading >>>
There was a time when owning a new BMW meant you had achieved ultimate success. The brand was the pinnacle of luxury and, in order to buy one, you had to be able to pay the asking price. Dealers didn’t need to negotiate too much because they knew a willing buyer was always around the corner.
That was the nature of BMW. It took cash, and a lot of it, to have the pleasure and the privilege of owning the exclusive ultimate driving machine.
Times are changing, though.
Audi, Mercedes-Benz, and even Lexus sell cars that can outshine a Bimmer. That’s a truth being felt at dealerships across the country, and BMW devised a plan to do something about it. It loaded up dealers with vehicles in an attempt to increase volume and become the number-one luxury nameplate in America.
That plan has backfired.
Why own when you can borrow?
The average payment for a new car in the United States is $479 per month. Insurance can cost an additional hundred bucks or more, so let’s figure it costs somewhere around $600 per month to own a new car. Factor in monthly fuel costs, parking fees, and general maintenance, and costs can get close to $1,000.
It’s no wonder some people choose to forgo car ownership in favor of public transportation or car sharing.
Car sharing has found pockets of success in the U.S., but BMW hopes that the new service it’s starting in Seattle will eventually benefit car sharers nationwide.
Tesla made some serious waves last week when it debuted its Model 3 electric car. These weren’t your “gently lapping the shoreline” waves, either. Think “Laird Hamilton monstrous big-time waves.” We’re a data-driven, internet-focused company, so to demonstrate this point, we ran some basic Google searches. “Chevrolet Bolt” (the Model 3’s most direct competitor, and a car set to beat it to market by almost 2 years) returned 2.3 million results. “Nissan Leaf” (by and large the most popular electric car currently on sale) yields 4.9 million results. “Tesla Model 3?” 90.4 million results. So yeah… tidal waves.
Here in New England, autumn holds a special place in our hearts. Be it the changing leaves and cooler temperatures, the knowledge that bitter cold and long nights are just around the corner, or the New England Patriots’ triumphant march toward the playoffs, the fall season brings with it a sense of comfort. Timed perfectly with the season’s capstone in America’s northeast corner, Thanksgiving manages to wrap up this autumnal attitude and outlook, bringing together families for a yearly reflection (and plenty of slumber-inducing turkey).
Regardless of where you live, the weathermen seem to be offering the same warning: It’s going to be a scorcher. We’ve seen heat waves hit nearly every part of the globe this summer, and despite coming off one of the most brutal winters on record, we’re already tired of the heat and humidity here in Boston. Being in the northeast, central air conditioning isn’t a given. However, unless you paid Porsche for a new Boxster Spyder, you’ll most likely be able to find some relief in your car.
There are some things all cars should be able to do:Go Stop Make it up a hill
Pretty basic, right? The only car I’ve ever driven that struggled to make it up a hill was a 1987 Subaru GL. That car, for whatever reason, barely had enough power to drive over the added elevation of stripes in a parking lot.
I mention this because last weekend I attended an electric car show and managed to take an up close and personal look at some of the EVs currently on American roads. All were impressive.
One couldn’t make it up a hill.
What’ll it be:
A new Nissan Leaf for less than $25,000, a new Chevy Volt for around $37,000, a new Cadillac ELR for $76,000, a new Tesla Model S for upwards of $80,000 or maybe the new BMW i3 or i8 or Mercedes-Benz B-Class electric?
A growing number of used electrics are also hitting the market. Prices for those range from the high teens to $400,000. (More on that later.)
How’s a car shopper supposed to decide the best course of action to go electric for the first time?
Read on, friends, for the answer awaits.
Buying a car that can go only about 50 miles from home is a scary thing. In typical day-to-day driving, the range of an electric car is more than adequate, but there is still the fear of running out of juice somewhere far from home.
Free access to a traditional gas-powered loaner vehicle.