Electric cars (Tesla Motors), we’re told, are here to stay. But unless you happen to live in Norway or the Netherlands, they remain far from an everyday sight. It is perhaps ironic that Norway – a nation whose impressive wealth can be traced back to their striking oil in the mid-twentieth century – lead the way, with around a third of car registrations being of the electric variety; yet with such wealth comes an improved education system and a willingness to invest. Furthermore, Norwegians truly love their country, and they do not want to see its great natural beauty worn away by the abrasive by-products of fossil fuel emission.
Is it possible that the States could catch up? Of course, there has to be strong consumer will for the vehicles to truly become part of the culture. We have a lot of road, we like to burn it down, and many are reluctant to admit that cell-powered cars are capable of that feeling, despite growing evidence to the contrary. But the States has a population sixty times that of Norway, and actually has more electric cars on the road – if far fewer proportionally. And the United States has Tesla Motors.
With 14,000 employees, a $4bn revenue, and the second largest building in the world on its way, it’s hard to ignore the ambition of Elon Musk and company – whose fortune gives them the luxury to think as responsibly as Norway’s driving population. And with such scale, it is easy to see Tesla Motors becoming a part of the national fabric every bit as much Ford did a century ago.
And these are just the numbers.
Look at Tesla’s commitment to environmentally-oriented innovation and you can’t help but hope that other companies will be tempted to follow their lead. Tesla is putting superchargers all around the world, and has invented the ‘Powerwall’ to take energy straight from the sun and feed it to your car. Their Gigafactory (that large building alluded to above) will make lithium batteries from recycled garbage. And their planned electric minibus could change the shape of mass transit – imagine every school bus and car share slowly replaced with electric alternatives.
There are a ton of reasons why Tesla are making such an impact, but for quick enlightenment you can do worse than checking out this new infographic that gathers some of their greatest achievements – and craziest plans – in one easy to digest pill.
Infographic via Jennings Motor Group