The electric vehicle revolution has eaten another one of its children. “U.S. electric car manufacturer Miles Electric Vehicles filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection early on Tuesday, court documents showed, highlighting the difficulties faced by battery-powered vehicles in gaining wide market acceptance,” says Reuters.
TTAC has never been bullish about EVs. This has nothing to do with ideology. Cars by nature will have a very limited market as long as they take hours to fill up, are for all intents and purposes unusable beyond a 40 mile radius from your home, and are priced out of the market.
Miles Electric, founded in 2004, made headlines with the first street-legal Chinese-made automobile sold in the United States. Its ZX40 was made by FAW Tianjin, a subsidiary of Volkswagen and Toyota joint venture partner FAW.
Miles sold into one of the few niches where EVs make sense: It made what usually are called ESVs, essential services vehicles, low-speed all-electric means of transportation used in parking enforcement, security, shipping and delivery, and grounds maintenance.
There, the usage pattern matches the technology.
This small, but possibly lucrative fleet market is now pretty much left to little-known Texas-based Good Earth Inc., makers of the even lesser known FireFly electric three-wheelers that help police departments all over the U.S. put parking tickets under your wipers.