By on July 30, 2019

2019 Chevrolet Bolt EV - Image: Chevrolet

There’s still two weeks to go before a crucial state regulatory board decision, but Colorado and two groups representing the lion’s share of global automakers have sealed a deal to adopt California’s Zero Emission Vehicle standard.

News of the pact adds weight to Colorado Governor Jared Polis’ decision, in January, to pursue a ZEV initiative, joining 10 other states who’ve signed onto the mandate. If passed into law, consumers will gain plenty of green choice while automakers will be forced to put up or pay up.

“The long and short of it is that it gives us the credits we need to successfully transition into (Colorado’s) program while ensuring that ZEVs will continue to increase in the Colorado marketplace,” Bryan Goodman, a spokesman for the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, told the Colorado Sun. “We’re very excited because it meets everyone’s goals.”

Both the Alliance and Global Automakers signed off on the deal, which allows automakers to collect credits for EV sales for two years preceding the law’s 2023 start date. Companies will also be allowed to use a certain amount of credits earned in other states to apply to their Colorado sales goal, but only for the 2023-2025 period. For automakers who begin selling EVs prior to the 2023 model year, the figure is 23 percent.

Automakers with EV-free inventories that start selling in 2023 can apply credits from other states to 36 percent of their Colorado goal. The proposal would see automakers attempt to make ZEVs account for almost 5 percent of their vehicles sold in the state, though that’s just a starting point. Colorado would ratchet up the EV mix in subsequent years.

Of course, barriers to consumer adoption remain the same as anywhere else. Range, entry price, recharging times, and recharging infrastructure will all need to improve to help move residents of the Mile High City and environs into greener choices.

[Image: General Motors]

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32 Comments on “Colorado, Automakers Shake Hands Ahead of EV Plunge...”


  • avatar
    loner

    “Of course, barriers to consumer adoption remain the same as anywhere else. Range, entry price, recharging times, and recharging infrastructure will all need to improve to help move residents of the Mile High City and environs into greener choices.”

    Interesting that you specifically mention the mile high city (Denver). That is the location in the state where these decisions are made, but also really the only place in the state where EVs have much significance. (I’m including the suburbs, as well as satellite enclaves of Boulder and Golden.) The headline really should say “Denver, Automakers Shake Hands Ahead of EV Plunge while rest of state looks on”

  • avatar
    ToddAtlasF1

    Fascists without Subarus? How will they get by?

  • avatar
    Dan

    “If passed into law, consumers will gain plenty of green choice while automakers will be forced to put up or pay up.”

    You expect this spin from the central planners and their rent seeking partners who will cash in on this but seeing it repeated verbatim in what’s supposed to be the car enthusiast press is pretty sickening.

    No, a defacto ban on the vehicles that consumers currently choose to buy is not gaining consumer choices. No, the big evil corporations aren’t going to pay for it.

    You and I are.

    • 0 avatar
      ToddAtlasF1

      Truth.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      from Dan: “No, a defacto ban on the vehicles that consumers currently choose to buy is not gaining consumer choices. No, the big evil corporations aren’t going to pay for it.”

      from the article: “The proposal would see automakers attempt to make ZEVs account for almost 5 percent of their vehicles sold in the state, though that’s just a starting point. Colorado would ratchet up the EV mix in subsequent years.”

      I was going to disagree with your statement, but you’re actually right. Forcing the product mix to be 5% EVs mathematically forces other options to diminish.

      However, while the state forces mfrs to stock EVs, nobody is forcing consumers to actually buy these vehicles, which brings the question: If people don’t buy these EVs, what happens then – massive state-funded subsidies?

      Personally, I drove from PA to MD to get the EV I wanted, but that’s a ‘pull’ method of moving inventory. The ‘push’ method won’t work very well, so it will be converted to ‘pull’ via incentives.

      • 0 avatar
        ToddAtlasF1

        “However, while the state forces mfrs to stock EVs, nobody is forcing consumers to actually buy these vehicles, which brings the question: If people don’t buy these EVs, what happens then – massive state-funded subsidies?”

        The onus is on the manufacturers to sell them. What already happens whenever there is a fascist dictate of ZEV percentage is that consumers who need real cars pay more to offset dumping of EVs. Look at Leaf lease and rebate rates for an example. The government didn’t pay for that. Nissan’s ICE customers and ICE customers of companies who had to buy Nissan’s and Tesla’s emissions credits were forced to pay for EVs that can’t be sold profitably.

        • 0 avatar
          mcs

          ” were forced to pay for EVs that can’t be sold profitably.”

          EVs can be sold for a profit. Tesla’s cost less to make than what they sell them for. That’s been verified by independent sources that performed teardowns. New lithium mines have begun production along other factors are pushing battery costs down further.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            Child slavery in the Congo makes EVs possible. Buying one is a declaration of war on humanity.

          • 0 avatar
            Art Vandelay

            “Child slavery in the Congo makes EVs possible. Buying one is a declaration of war on humanity.”

            RUSSIA, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran, Kuwait, Venuzuala…yeah those big oil producers are saints lol.

          • 0 avatar
            ToddAtlasF1

            We could be oil independent tomorrow if not for people like the leadership in Colorado.

          • 0 avatar
            redgolf

            I was able to see and sit in a Chevy Bolt for the first time a few days ago, they don’t sell them in my area so while passing through the next county over the local Chevy dealer had 4 of them, one in the show room, after sitting in it and comparing it to our leased Buick Encore, the Buick seemed a lot more roomy and no power drivers seat in the Bolt also the sticker shock of the Bolt ( $43+k) was ridiculous considering the Encore could’ve been purchased for under $20k! ICE for me!

  • avatar
    bullnuke

    It appears to me at this point that the auto manufacturers are linking up with these jurisdictions to support the foray into EV/BEV vehicles due to the large previous financial investment, corporate inertia, and fear built over the previous several years of governmental influences in this direction (more stringent EPA regulation, subsidy cash, emission credits, etc.) and this inertia forces them to “crystal ball” future regulation in this direction. It is something of a crap-shoot by greasing of the loudly squeaking wheel of the rather powerful Green political machine to hedge future company stock prices. A move away from market forces determining the product to governmental persuasion/compulsion/intimidation. The “othering” of the ICE vehicle and its owner.

  • avatar
    JoeBrick

    I love the smell of failure in the morning.

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    Of course.What state is crazy enough to not join in on the cash giveaway?

  • avatar
    Roader

    You have to consider that Polis is from the People’s Republic of Boulder, a city filled with very, very rich, very, very white people who have no qualms telling the unwashed proletariat what kinds of vehicles they’re allowed to drive.

    This won’t end well for Jared.

  • avatar
    Master Baiter

    The Feds really need to step in and put a stop to this nonsense. Auto makers should not have to negotiate with individual states to sell their product, particularly when the “pollution” in question’s only impact is a global effect. CO and CA could put all their ICE vehicles in a crusher tomorrow and its impact on global CO2 would be less than negligible.

    • 0 avatar
      DenverMike

      Agreed but who said this has anything to do with air quality?

      Follow the money

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      You know, I think you and I are close politically, but I just spent 3 weeks working between metro Los Angeles and Vandenberg AFB (Lompoc) CA. Between the mass of humanity all seemingly driving at once and the unique topography that holds onto the smog, it is quite possible their needs differ from mine in metro Huntsville AL. The problem with a national standard is how would you just tell those folks to screw off? The national standard would have to address a worst case scenario and frankly, with respect to vehicle pollution, Southern California is likely that worst case. If I lived out there I’d want stricter controls too. Then again, I’d never want to drive anywhere given the traffic.

      On a side note, I quit counting exotic cars at 22 one day. That includes both an Enzo (driving) and an F40 (parked). Was quite the contrast with the backdrop of the homeless encampments. Was really a crazy place, but man the sushi is good and I could spend a fortune at Amobea Music.

      • 0 avatar
        ToddAtlasF1

        The cars and trucks that are polluting in southern California are not held accountable to US or California laws. It wouldn’t matter if every US citizen in California walked to work.

  • avatar
    JimC31

    I just did a 3000km road trip in a Tesla, and it worked pretty great. There’s no need for these mandates. The cars are good, charging infrastructure is expanding, and costs are gradually coming down while range is gradually increasing. How are mandates going to actually help make some breakthrough in battery technology? Wouldn’t forcing people to buy what’s there reduce the incentive to innovate? What’s the damn point? (Yes I know the point.)

    If I was a government busybody I wouldn’t be so worried about trying to coerce people into buying EVs as much as about the environmental impact of them suddenly achieving true mass-market popularity, it might be a net benefit but there will still be costs.

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      I ask totally devoid of snark, have Tesla prices dropped since the 7500 dollar subsidy got reduced for them? I know their sales have continued to climb which does seemingly point to them being good cars. I don’t think the 7500 bucks sold a single Tesla. People just seem to like them and buy them. My friend has one and I like them. I’ve frankly kicked around a used one for my wife…I like the old frontend on the S much better.

      I currently have 3/4 of a Leaf in my garage. It was a great commuter until my 17 year old couldn’t be bothered to look out the windshield. I’ll be welding in a new strut tower this weekend then he will be learning to paint. But it was solid in it’s role and increasingly, electrics have fewer and fewer compromises. That fact is what will sell them, not subsidies or mandates.

      • 0 avatar
        SCE to AUX

        Well said.

        Sorry to hear about the Leaf crash. I wrecked my 12 Leaf in 2014 to the tune of $4000, including the $650 headlight which still worked except for its broken flange. It also required welding by the shop. Good luck with the repair.

  • avatar
    285exp

    There’s nothing stopping these states from “encouraging” their subjects to purchase more EVs and fewer ICE powered ones, just impose a punitive fee, inversely proportional to their EPA rating, to register new ICE vehicles. They wouldn’t even have to subsidize the EVs, especially since many of the EV buyers are saying they would have bought them regardless of whether they received a tax credit or not. Sounds like a great way to increase tax receipts while decreasing the amount of unnecessary tax credits that they’re giving out now.

    That, in addition to gradually increasing the fuel taxes to encourage less driving and help force the less fuel efficient vehicles off the road, would have a much greater effect than forcing the automakers to build cars that their customers don’t want, especially customers who don’t live in those states.

  • avatar
    SuperCarEnthusiast

    Where is individual choice? Not in California nor Colorado!

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      Your choices are now adjusted, that’s all.

      The diner menu of 1990 didn’t have keto or gluten-free options, either, but now it does. It’s likely something else gets pushed aside to make room for the new choices, however.

  • avatar
    dal20402

    Charging infrastructure outside the home is slowly improving. We just got back from a 2000-mile road trip through the mountain West. We took our ICE car, not our BEV, but we saw a surprising number of BEVs out on the remote interstates. Most of them were Teslas but there was the occasional Bolt and one Kona EV.

    Honestly I think the biggest barrier to mass EV adoption in urban areas is charging for people who don’t have garages or driveways.

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