Are Electric Cars the Way of the Future? Tesla Model 3 Pre-Orders Say So
The electric car. An illusive concept for us simple gasoline-car-driving folk. We’re faced with so many questions, like:
- What are the benefits of an electric car?
- Do you just plug it into the wall like you’re charging your phone?
- So, wait, you don’t have to go to a gas station…ever?
Tesla, the American auto company based out of California, has been answering all of these questions and more since the release of the Tesla Roadster in 2006. But now, 10 years later, the Tesla Model 3 has been announced, and the response has been overwhelming. Check out the car’s specs in the video below.
Pretty cool, right? And the best part is that it comes with a price tag of only $35,000, which is a far cry from the $71,000 - $110,000 price tag on the Model S.
This Model 3’s more affordable price is likely the reason that its release was so insanely successful – over 276,000 preorders were placed for the car in the first THREE DAYS. And Elon Musk, the CEO of Tesla, is mind-blowingly nonchalant about his unexpectedly large presale numbers. Check out the tweet he published yesterday:
276k Model 3 orders by end of Sat— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 3, 2016
It sounds like just a typical Saturday for Mr. Musk. If I were him, I’d be jumping off the walls, because even if every person who preordered only buys the basic model, that means 8.8 billion dollars for his company. I think that’s deserving of an exclamation mark or two.
Benefits of Electric Cars
There are plenty of reasons to buy an electric car other than a sleek design and lower price tag. Mainly, they’re much better for the environment than regular cars. First of all, electric cars don’t burn gas – they have no engine, no gas tank, and no exhaust. Despite this, they’re still considered to have emissions because of their use of electricity and subsequently, an electrical grid. Even still, the Union of Concerned Scientists (USC) says that electric cars generate half the emissions of the average comparable gasoline car, even when accounting for the pollution that comes from battery manufacturing.
You can save money in a ton of different ways when you have an electric car. The USC says that electric vehicle owners could save almost $13,000 on fuel costs and use 6,100 fewer gallons of gasoline over the life of their vehicles in comparison to a typical compact gasoline car.
And for those with electric cars also equipped with solar panels (crazy, right?), the savings are even bigger. One electric/solar-powered car owner interviewed by SunPower says that he pays around one-fourth of what it costs everyone else on the road to drive his vehicle. This sounds like something we all need to get into.
Tesla is realizing the potential for solar power, too. They’ve designed solar-powered charging stations for Tesla cars, which is a huge environmentally-friendly step up from the old charging stations that sourced electricity from a conventional power grid, as discussed earlier.
Finally, there are even government benefits for those who drive electric cars. In Ontario, electric vehicle drivers can receive a $3,000 rebate and carpool lane access, as well as up to a $1,000 rebate on the wall connector and installation. I’m starting to wonder if there’s any downside here.
This feature isn’t included in all electric cars, of course, but some Tesla models now come complete with an Autopilot System – basically, a mode in which the car drives itself. Check out this video to watch the future in action.
Did you see that? Did you watch the car change lanes on its own? This car might be a better driver than most people. ScienceAlert reports that researchers estimate that driverless cars could reduce traffic fatalities by up to 90 percent by the middle of the century, which means that self-driving cars could save 29,447 lives a year. That means that in the United States alone, over 300,000 fatalities would be prevented over the course of a decade. Even though self-driving cars might be a bit of an intimidating concept at first, they’re worth considering if these estimates are even close to correct.
So, as it turns out, the almost 300,000 preorders of the Tesla Model 3 might be justified after all. With electric cars being good for the environment, easy on the bank account, and in some cases, safer for drivers, it’s no wonder they’re gaining momentum – literally and figuratively.