Like all electric cars, the Norwegian Think Global electric car was the future. And because it held the promise of rescuing the climate, it was especially worshipped by the media. It symbolized technical savvy, progressive thinking, and was supposed to be proof that thinking green could lead to success, profit and a saved planet.
Well think again. All that was just slick marketing. And, as always, it never takes long for reality to catch up, pass and leave fantasy in the dust…no matter how much it is subsidized.
Cars waiting a year for parts, 30% broken down
About a week ago the English-language Norwegian online newspaper thelocal.no told us the story of how the hip “Think” electric cars has turned into a complete flop, at least in Norway. The Local writes here:
Think electric cars have begun to stack up at the few mechanic’s shops able to service them due to a spare parts shortage. Up to 30 percent of the 2,000-odd models produced have suffered breakdowns of a key power-control unit, or PCU. The car’s lithium-ion battery is powerless to recharge without the PCU, and the plant that made them shut its doors in Finland in June.”
When the car was first rolled out, the politically correct media loved it. Even Norwegian neswpaper Addresseavisa bought one of its own. But The Local writes that Addresseavisa’s own Think “was in for repair”.
Most likely sitting in a lot in the back waiting for spare parts that likely will never come. The Think car has had a history of failure. According to Wikipedia it went bankrupt 4 times since it was founded in 1991. Even Ford took a shot at it, but abandoned it.
Nissan Leaf and range anxiety
The Think car is not the only electric car suffering from financial and technical woes. Other brands, even with the help of massive subsidies, have shown zero viability. Take the subsidized Nissan Leaf for example: Liza Barth of Consumer Reports panned it. Here’s what she wrote about it (emphasis added):
I decided to head out on my regular long commute, with the cheaper toll, but saw the Leaf quickly run though the charge and drop to 39 miles about halfway through my trip and I was freezing. I was very happy to see stopped traffic on the New York State Thruway (that’s a first) as that calmed my range anxiety and I saw the estimated range actually increase by six miles. The last two miles of my trip, I put on the heat with 24 miles left, but it did little to warm my already numb fingers and toes. I made it to the office with 17 miles to spare.”
The Leaf also comes with a “high-pitched whine”. The infrastructure for charging up electric cars is also a complete flop. For example North Carolina’s Duke Energy supplies charging stations for electric cars, but has asked its customers not to use them. According to WCNC:
Duke Energy is asking customers who own their electric car charging station to stop using the product after a house fire in Mooresville last month.”
Looks like lack of range, massive subsidies, impracticality and no infrastructure will continue to plague and cripple electric cars for a long time to come.