By on November 11, 2019

The tide of praise and promise that swept in at the impetus of the 21st century to support electric vehicles is receding. The same goes for the entire concept of autonomy — though this has been pulling back faster than Nicholas Cage’s hairline, and with only a fraction of its grace. Over the last few years, the number of voices shrugging off advanced technologies has increased, creating a rift between cynics and believers.

While largely disinterested in the ramifications of the technology, automakers have also tamped down their previously bloated expectations. Those pushing alternative powertrains and vehicular autonomy are becoming more based, but so too are the companies that never bothered chasing them quite so zealously in the first place.

Honda CEO Takahiro Hachigo says his company still has serious doubts as to just how lucrative electrification and mobility projects will actually be, suggesting the costs and complications of such technologies probably aren’t worth pursuing as a primary objective. 

“The hurdles to battery electric vehicles and complete autonomous driving are still quite high,” Hachigo told Automotive News in an interview Honda’s global headquarters last month. “I don’t know whether other manufacturers are becoming too optimistic or not, but apparently the approach in going about these regulations differs from one company to another.”

However, it would be wrong to discount Honda as a company without at least a few logs burning in the opposite campfire. Honda was the first automaker to mainstream hybrid technology, thanks to the Insight, and has put sizable investments behind both electrification and various mobility projects. We grumbled earlier this year when the automaker previewed “Dream Drive” as a connected user experience ready to be loaded up with microtransactions and partnered marketing opportunities. Honda is not squeaky clean, nor is it wholly avoiding electric and autonomous vehicles — or their associated trappings. Few car companies can claim otherwise these days.

The business does have less-extreme ambitions than some other manufacturers, however. Its battery-powered Honda E perked up our interested but isn’t expected to become a global product. Instead, it’s being shopped around in markets with more demanding emission regulations — likely existing as little more than a well-designed compliance vehicle.

The brand also wants to draw two-thirds of its global sales from electrified vehicles by 2030 and dump a glut of EVs into the European market in a few years, though the automaker has admitted the brunt of those sales will probably come from hybrid models, not battery-electric cars.

“I do not believe there will be a dramatic increase in demand for battery vehicles, and I believe this situation is true globally,” Hachigo said. “There are issues with infrastructure and hardware.”

“There are different regulations in different countries, and we have to abide by them. So, it’s a must to continue R&D,” he continued. “But I don’t believe it will become mainstream anytime soon.”

Meanwhile, autonomous projects have fallen by the wayside. Honda plans on continuing development efforts but wants to focus more on advanced driving aids and mobility projects with more proven commercial value.

From Automotive News:

In autonomous driving, Honda announced plans in 2017 for lane-changing autonomous highway driving by 2020 and Level 4 self-driving by 2025. But it has offered few updates since.

Indeed, Hachigo said last month the carmaker has no horizon for introducing Level 3 automated driving, which allows the car to drive itself under certain circumstances as long as the driver is ready to take over.

“I don’t have any timeline or vehicle model in mind,” the Honda boss said.

Instead, the company will continue adding functionality to its Honda Sensing system, a suite of safety features such as lane-keep assist, blind-spot warning and automatic emergency braking.

“We have established these technologies, but at the same time, you have to think about what the social demand is and what legal environment we have to operate in,” said Hachigo. “Now is the time for us to ponder how we can introduce these services to the market.”

Honda is also reportedly disinterested in aligning itself with other manufacturers to endure the high-cost of developing these new technologies. It plans to pursue limited partnerships, claiming a corporate merger would be out of the question — despite that being a current trend among the industries largest players.

“We do not have any intention of having a capital tie-up,” the CEO explained. “The reason is, once we have a capital tie-up, that other party will have some voice in our management, which means in some instances, we may not be able to move in the direction we want.”

[Image: Jeff Bukowski/Shutterstock]

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72 Comments on “Honda CEO: ‘EVs Will Not Be Mainstream’...”


  • avatar
    SCE to AUX

    Autonomous vehicles will hit a legal dead end. This technology should not be conflated with EVs.

    As for EVs, going small will always be a losing proposition. If you don’t go all in like Tesla (and possibly VW), you can never achieve economies of scale to be profitable. Tesla is showing just how high this obstacle is.

    All the critics said that the ‘established’ mfrs could crush Tesla with their superior know-how, decades of experience, and large cash reserves. Now reality is setting in, and the old guard has figured out how hard it is to enter and survive in the EV market. So their excuse is that “EVs won’t ever be mainstream”.

    • 0 avatar
      thejohnnycanuck

      For all intents and purposes the EV market is not even 2 decades old and not even 2% of the market. Please forgive the likes of Honda for not dropping everything to jump in with both feet.

      By the way his quote was “But I don’t believe it will become mainstream anytime soon.”

      • 0 avatar
        thornmark

        Tesla sales have been artificially supported by government subsidies and when those subsidies are withdrawn the sales collapse

        • 0 avatar
          SCE to AUX

          That would be interesting if it was true.

          Typically, you get more of what you pay for (subsidize), but the relatively high price of Teslas means the subsidies have had little effect on sales as the subsidies have tapered off. The Federal subsidy for a Tesla is now only $1875, and on January 1 it goes away.

          YTD, the Model 3 is up 42% over its 2018 sales.

          • 0 avatar
            DC Bruce

            The real subsidy for Tesla is not the customer cash from federal and (in some cases) state income tax credits. The real subsidy is Tesla’s ability to sell emissions credits to other manufacturers of non-compliant vehicle fleets, which is a significant source of cost-free revenue for Tesla. Arguably, that money comes, not from the government, but from the customers who buy vehicles from those non-compliant manufacturers. Should those manufacturers develop compliant fleets (whether from the introduction of EVs, or by some other means), the market for Tesla’s emission credits will soften and eventually disappear. Then what?

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            Yeah but production was far from up to speed in the 1/2 half of 2018, before the tent factory was fully functioning.

            The bigger thing to look at is the drop from July-Dec 18 vs Jan-June 19 when the incentive was cut from 7500 to 3750.

            Last half of 18 Model 3 sales total ~116k vs 1st half 2019 ~58k, interestingly cut in half just like the incentive. If you look at 3rd quarter 18 vs 19 they are also down. So sales are actually going down on the 3 not up.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            @DC Bruce, an aspect that is rarely mentioned, pretty much every HEMI sold is a Tesla (or Nissan) subsidy.

          • 0 avatar
            thornmark

            >>SCE to AUX

            wrong

            Tesla’s U.S. Sales in Third Quarter Fell 39%, Filing Reveals
            – Bloomberg

            Tesla had a drop of almost 40% in revenue from the U.S. — its largest market. Tesla’s U.S. sales plummeted to $3.13 billion in the latest quarter, from $5.13 billion a year earlier, according to a securities filing on Tuesday

          • 0 avatar
            probert

            Tesla is in line to sell about 360,000 – 400,000 cars this year. Order books are full. They have increased their profit on each car by 13%. The Chinese factory is just coming on line.

          • 0 avatar
            stuki

            In addition to emissions credits, every other driver on every road in every state which allows Teslas to drive in bus lanes, on sidewalks, run over children etc. unhindered, are also beng forced to subsidize Tesla drivers at de facto gunpoint. They wary from country to country, and state to state, but the subsidies do add up to a whole slew of benefits paid for, one way or another, by non-BEV drivers. And: The places where BEV sells the best, are the places where the subsidies are the highest. IN places without subsidies at all, BEVs don’t sell much at all, either.

  • avatar
    Fred

    I kind of agree. For my daily running around getting groceries an EV would work out well. But, as soon as I want to go into the big city which is a 3 hour drive or road trip over the pass, range anxiety sets in. Besides I’m 67 so all these new fangled deely bobs I’ll leave for the younger set.

  • avatar
    randy in rocklin

    All of this technology, and not many qualified techs to fix them. There will be more things that can go wrong with all of this crap they are loading up on cars. The batteries in EV’s depreciate over time and lose their ability to maintain charges than when brand new.Then the disposal problems…..All those landfills to contaminate with used EV batterries….hahaha

  • avatar
    Victor

    The EV can go mainstream under a specific set of conditions. I was never a believer, and that 30K Euros battery swap for the Leaf in Portugal highlighted yet another roadblock – that is, other than energy sources, safety issues, recharging time, road tripping planning and the unanswered issue with disposing the batteries. If a battery costs about the same as the whole car, then there will be no used car market for EVs. They will eventually turn into disposable, crazy expensive contraptions, probably within the next five years.

    That might not matter much in America, where the average income is among the highest and cars are relatively cheap. But in the rest of the world this sort of thing is a dealbreaker of continental proportions.

    • 0 avatar
      forward_look

      There are use cases for EVs today; you’re not one of them. But the technology is progressing. Better, cheaper batteries are coming; faster and more chargers are coming. Battery recycling is coming.

      • 0 avatar
        Victor

        The entire electronics industry has been promising better, cheaper and longer lasting batteries since the 1990’s; yet in 2019 our phones can barely go an entire working day without recharging. Maybe EVs will be restricted to adequate use cases, and that does mean they’ll never truly go mainstream.

        • 0 avatar
          forward_look

          Batteries are better. But people also want powerful phones. And thin. You can get a flip phone that runs a week.

          The thing about disruptive technology is it sneaks up on you unless you pay attention. Solid state batteries will hit next year.

  • avatar
    vvk

    Yes, some established automakers will not be able to evolve and will go the way of the Blackberry.

  • avatar
    jalop1991

    “though this has been pulling back faster than Nicholas Cage’s hairline, and with only a fraction of its grace.”

    That is pure art, my friend. Pure art.

    (BTW, I think you mean “uninterested”, not “disinterested”. Those are two completely different words with completely different meanings. Look it up.)

  • avatar
    Master Baiter

    This is typical Japanese long term thinking; Honda doesn’t have to boost its short-term stock price by making wild claims about electrification and/or autonomous driving. And with its engineering prowess, you can bet Honda has studied these problems seven ways from Sunday.

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      Toyota has engineering prowess, yet they persist on fuel cell vehicles.

      • 0 avatar
        stuki

        Fuel cells aren’t an inevitable dead end. They are just an insanely likely dead end. Which does put them ahead of long range, large capacity BEVs as a meaningful scale replacement for ICE vehicles.

        More importantly than pure “engineering prowess”, Japan got their credit bubble done with almost three decades ago. Bach in the 80s and 90s, they were throwing money at AI and other frivolous silliness as well (Asimo, anyone….). But since then, selling nothing but obviously empty hype, in the form of paper and promises, to completely clueless dunces who “made money from their home” and “portfolio”, hasn’t worked well over there. So manufacturers have, once again, been forced to promote people with at least basic competencies into decision making positions. Rather than just hype peddlers and the pathologically gullible.

        • 0 avatar
          forward_look

          If somebody came up with a cheap-ish FC that used something besides hydrogen, it might be a different game. Something liquid, easy to transport and pump into your tank, using existing infrastructure.

          Don’t get your hopes up, but it could happen.

  • avatar
    EBFlex

    Well duh.

    In other news water is wet

  • avatar
    dal20402

    Robot cars are farther off than I thought three years ago.

    EVs are a different story. What happens to them will depend entirely on the trend in battery prices. If they continue dropping (as I expect), EVs will take over most of the market once their TCO over a typical ownership period is equal to or lower than the TCO of gas cars. If battery prices plateau, EVs will take a bit more of the market than they have today (as people get familiar with their advantages) but they’ll still be too expensive to become the dominant type of car.

  • avatar

    I would not consider Japanese companies as Oracles in anything regarding technology. They usually are behind. They missed lot of new trends. Like Reusable rockets. Okay forget about rockets. How about smartphones? They thought they own market with iMode. Boy were they wrong – iMode disappeared in a flash and were forgotten the moment iPhone was announced (to be fair Nokia and Euro Symbian become obsolete overnight too). They are good at making appliances (even though I do not see any of them in USA except of cars).

    • 0 avatar
      probert

      I don’t even know where to start with this – oh yes- I do – the transistor.

      • 0 avatar
        TR4

        The transistor was invented in USA in 1947.
        The transistor radio was first designed and made in USA in 1954.
        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transistor_radio

        • 0 avatar
          JimZ

          yes, but US electronics firms (Sylvania, Raytheon, RCA, etc.) were heavily invested in vacuum tubes and were too slow to propagate solid-state tech. Sony was making solid-state TV sets in the early 1960s, while RCA didn’t get rid of tubes until the mid ’70s. We had one of those last RCA tube sets when I was a kid. took a long time to turn on (cathodes had to heat up) and despite being called a “portable” (‘cos it had a handle, you see) it weighed a ton.

          • 0 avatar

            And now all those Japanese TV manufacturers – Toshiba, Sharp, AKAI and etc are owned by Chinese. Chinese also make better smartphones and better laptops and better webapps and better… Japanese become too fat as well. And I did not mention Koreans yet.

  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    THANK YOU Mr. Hachigo. I’ve said it for at least the past two years, hybrids are the logical path forward.

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      I am in strong agreement. Hybrids are a much better use of limited batteries. Even for an EV charged with 100% renewables… that same battery capacity spread across conventional hybrids is like 10-20x more effective at reducing emissions.

      It’s no coincidence that VWAG is the big pusher of EVs. They are greenwashing to atone for Dieselgate and rebuild their image. It’s a hell of a gamble though and I honestly think it’s not going to pay off in the time span they are hoping for.

  • avatar
    Jerome10

    Refreshing to hear an auto executive being pragmatic.

    I think he’s right. And the company is certainly not just doing nothing.

    VW by contrast is basically betting the company. Highly risky. Huge if it pays off disaster if not.

    • 0 avatar
      Lockstops

      Not so risky if you have the German government in your pocket, as well as basically the whole EU. And VW’s business model is always betting big on a tech/business model that they have ensured through deals with legislators to be the winner or strongly favoured. And the other part of VW is being a financial powerhouse, precisely because government etc. are backing their investors and everyone knows that so VW will always be a safe bet.

      VW Group has done exactly that on racing too: always makes sure they have a regulatory edge which they have negotiated beforehand, then they pour more money ‘all in’ than anyone else can match, or dares to match.

  • avatar
    sooperedd

    AVs never gonna work….EVs will occupy a niche….ICEs continue to dominate.

  • avatar

    “There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home.”
    Ken Olsen, founder of Digital Equipment Corporation, 1977

    “I think there is a world market for maybe five computers.”
    Thomas Watson, president of IBM, 1943

    • 0 avatar
      Lockstops

      “Betamax will be huge”
      “LaserDiscs are the future”

      Those, and the quotes you mentioned could just as well be Elon’s predictions. Just like how he was basically aggressively attacking everyone as complete morons who dared to question his claims that Teslas will be fully autonomous in 2017.

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      So let’s pretend that EVs haven’t been around since the early 20th century. Let’s even ignore the fact that the largest automaker in the world (then) fielded one in the 1990s. Let’s put the modern EV at circa 2011…so 8ish years with the model S and Leaf. Now let’s look at them today. A little more range, a bit cheaper (though the cheaper models don’t offer the luxury of the S…the gen 1 to 2 leaf is a better comparison here).

      Now, let is look at the home computer circa 1977 to 1985ish. Peak home computer was the Apple 1…and you had to build it. Commodore PET, Altair (though aging by then), this is the capability a home computer had.

      Fast forward to 1985. Commodore 64 was low end by then. You had gone from bare bones machines which had to have programs entered in BASIC to real GUIs on the Mac, Atari ST, and Amiga. DOS was just hitting it’s stride. Bottom line, these machines represented a radical upgrade and radical cost reduction from the 1977 models.

      The EV market is positively stagnent by comparison. Home Computers went from hobbyist toys to mature devices and then kept right on evolving in that time. Meanwhile the EV is right where it always has been…just a few years and advancements from mainstream adoption.

      Honda is right to be measured here.

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      “Think of going from Detroit to Atlantic City on its own power”

      – Detroit Electric ad, early 20th century

  • avatar
    DC Bruce

    Who knows if Mr. Hachigo is correct. But scaling up EVs to be more than a single digit percentage of the worldwide autofleet has some major issues that few seem to want to discuss. Principally, fanbois point to the decreasing cost of batteries and the growth rate of renewable electricity sources, and, using straight-line projections assume that those favorable trends will continue to the point where EVs make economic sense for most buyers as their primary personal vehicle (not their in-town runabout). Yet, the scaling up of the EV fleet to significant size involves a tremendous increase in the demand for rare earths that are battery materials, a tremendous increase in the capacity of the electric grid to deliver energy for transportation that is now supplied by petroleum products and a tremendous increase in electric generating capacity for the same reason. Given the popular resistance to new high capacity transmission lines and the combination of the limitations of solar and wind power with public reluctance to build — or even maintain operational — nuclear plants, it’s hard to see how that’s going to happen.

    It’s true that EVs are, end-to-end, more efficient than ICE-powered vehicles; but the question is: are those efficiencies enough to offset the other costs associated with EVs, especially when hybrid energy storage technology does such a nice job of improving the efficiency of ICE-powered vehicles?

  • avatar
    Scoutdude

    I’m sorry but this just reeks of “we are so far behind so publicly we are going to say that the others don’t know what they are doing”.

  • avatar
    Imagefont

    You gotta love these silly predictions about battery costs going down forever. And new battery tech that’s just around the corner that’s going to be cheaper and better in every metric. I have no doubt that batteries using established chemistries will improve incrementally over time, but those improvements will approach a limit and each successive improvement will be smaller than the last. And battery costs are driven by the raw materials needed to manufacture them. The price of nickel and cobalt and lithium and manganese doesn’t just continue to drop over time simply because someone believes the world is transitioning (suddenly) to BEV’s and this narrative requires much lower prices.
    And batteries aren’t recycled for anything but certain materials since it’s not economically viable. And falling battery prices makes potential recycling efforts even LESS viable. More likely the raw materials for batteries will experience fluctuating prices – just like every other raw material.
    None of these silly articles about a tidal wave of BEV’s have any merit or technical provenance. Because you can say whatever you want on the Internet with zero qualification. It’s just noise.

    • 0 avatar
      mcs

      @imagefront: The battery tech that “is just around the corner” hasn’t been staying “just around the corner”. There have been gradual improvements that have already improved batteries in both density and durability. Solid-state batteries have been advancing as well and Toyota is going to be unveiling theirs in the summer of 2020. It’s a matter of getting it into production after that, but Toyota being Toyota will do it. Tesla has Maxwell’s dry electrode technology and that’s going into production.

      Metals required in batteries are being reduced in two ways. New technologies reduce or eliminate some of them like cobalt. Because batteries are getting lighter, the vehicles themselves are getting lighter so there will be a range increase for a given battery capacity. A lower capacity battery in the vehicle means less material used and lower cost. You also have the laws of supply and demand as prices go up with new mines opening up to meet demand.

      Recycling isn’t going to be a huge issue since even current battery technology will allow the battery to outlast the rest of the car. From there, the batteries would have plenty of life left as grid storage devices.

      Furthermore, while there is a theoretical limit on battery density and costs, there is a point where you really don’t need more range in an EV. My next EV will probably be over 300 miles range, but I’d use that range maybe once a year. Even now, if I make a shopping trip, I’m coming back have only consumed 1 to 1.5 kWh of capacity.

    • 0 avatar
      ToolGuy

      I get tired of hearing for decades about ground-breaking game-changing ICE efficiency innovations – ceramic this, direct-injection that, Atkinson-cycle the other – which slowly if ever hit the mainstream, and arrive with their own issues when they do.

      • 0 avatar
        forward_look

        The thing is, after all this ceramic-atkinsondirect injectioning, the improvements are getting harder to come by. Batteries are just getting going, and motors, controllers, and chargers are improving too.

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    Eventually what ever comes with the least drama, asks the least from you, you never have to think about it, and lastly, costs the least over all will win

  • avatar
    JimZ

    “Company which doesn’t make something claims that thing won’t catch on.”

    Kind of sounds like Detroit’s opinion of Japanese cars circa, oh, 1978.

    Japan Inc. is slowly but surely ossifying, same as all those companies they disrupted in the 70s and 80s.

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      It’s the business lifecycle.

      [Cue The Lion King’s circle of life.]

    • 0 avatar
      ToolGuy

      Honda gets my nomination as “Most Disappointing Japanese OEM (TM)” – they seem to know a lot about vehicles, but then you look on the showroom floor and there is a gap, or unevenness at best. Every once in awhile they make something great.

      • 0 avatar
        JimZ

        Japan Inc. business culture seems to have contracted into an Uber-conservative “if we always do what we always did, we’ll always get what we’ve always got” mindset. That’s ripe for someone to come in and upset your apple cart.

  • avatar
    thornmark

    Better yet:

    “Gasoline engines will soon be rendered obsolete.”
    Thomas A. Edison, 1910

    “Prices on electric cars will continue to drop until they’re within reach of the average family.”
    ‘The Washington Post’, 1915

    I doubt commercially viable batteries will achieve the energy density of fossil fuels w/in the foreseeable future

    which is why backward states like CA have sought to outlaw ICEs

    • 0 avatar

      Edison was right. 100 years is very soon in historical scale. ICE is already obsolete and everyone acknowledges it. Do not expect development of new IC engines.

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      If you look at the specs of an EV from 1915, they’ll look a lot like a golf cart.

      Those things *are* affordable to the average family. A brand new one costs about $10k, and used ones are $3k-$4k, which is about 1/3rd of a comparable car. Maintenance and running costs are also pretty reasonable, and and they have every comfort of a car from 1915.

      Highwayworthy EVs came about a century later, when the battery technology was ready, and you can buy one for about the same price as a regular car.

      The only reason we don’t use golf cars for everyday transportation is because the speed limits are too high. They have the range and carrying capacity to be very good commuter vehicles in my town. Golf carts could be made into viable commuter cars with the stroke of a pen.

      …Except that the regular car drivers would just run them over.

      Fortunately, we have highwayworthy EVs now.

      • 0 avatar
        Art Vandelay

        So you are way off on your pricing (owner of a truck, hatch, EV, and golf cart). Yeah, used carts typically are there but can be had for less. New, maybe, but a Nissan Versa is like 12k and infintly more capable and usable and 3-4 grand gets a nice used car that is again, infinitely more capable than a golf cart. I’d have to jump down to a model T which would still be more capable than my golf cart to be in the same league.

        I can get a new highway Worthy gas vehicle for a little over 10 k. Nicely equipped still under 15. EVs are double that and that is the Leaf and Hyundai.

  • avatar
    thornmark

    here’s another article showing how sensitive Tesla sales are to government subsidies;

    Tesla’s sales never recovered after Hong Kong cut a tax break
    By Echo HuangJuly 29, 2019

    the sales fell to a fraction of what they were::
    https://www.theatlas.com/charts/in1o1jrjL

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      From the article:

      “The new policy, which was aimed at reducing congestion, capped a waiver of Hong Kong’s hefty vehicle registration tax that can equal a car’s sticker price, and made a new Model S more than 1.5 times more expensive.”

      Same thing happened in Denmark, and critics love to point to this. *Of course*, when you impose a 50%+ tax on a product, people buy less of it. But in the US, the subsidy amounted to about 10% of the sales price, and now it’s much less.

      • 0 avatar
        Art Vandelay

        In both cases they simply subjected them to the same taxes that every other car on the road was subject to.

        Additionally States are beginning to close the loopholes that allow EV drivers to not pay road taxes (The gasoline tax in most cases is to fund road maintenance and construction…not punish ICE drivers as many EV owners seem to think). I had to pay an extra fee on the Leaf in Alabama for this reason.

  • avatar
    probert

    Funny how Mazda was saying the same thing a few years ago. In any case, Honda is producing electric scooters and has produced very advanced hybrids. When it’s time, they will be right there with nice EVs.

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      Honda’s hybrids haven’t been class leading since the original insight and have been problematic (Original Civic hybrid) and Utterly disappointing (Gen 2 Insight, CR-Z, NSX).

      Everybody and there brother builds electric scooters. Honda’s models bring nothing class leading to the table.

      There is nothing to suggest Honda has the capability to magically crap out a competitive, let alone class leading EV “when the time is right”.

    • 0 avatar
      Luke42

      The Honda Clarity PHEV is nice enough.

      It’s not as nice as the Volt, but its a good choice to take over that niche now that the Volt has been discontinued.

      The Model 3 bests them both and for only a little more money, though.

  • avatar
    ToddAtlasF1

    EVs are truly one of the horrors of a fascist command economy. Manual transmissions keep being dropped “because of lack of demand” while billions are squandered developing EVs to be sold at a loss. Meanwhile, the third quarter of 2019 was the first time more EVs were sold than cars with manual transmissions since 1906.

    • 0 avatar
      dal20402

      Todd’s rule: Only smoky cars for maximum freedom.

      • 0 avatar
        bullnuke

        I don’t know about ToddAtlasF1 but the only smokey car I remember seeing in the last 15 or 20 years was a Tesla as it was being lifted into a water-filled dumpster by fire fighters.

    • 0 avatar
      Art Vandelay

      EVs on their own merits are fine if you fall within their use case.(as is the case with any class of car) and actually bring some excellent attributes to the table (quiet operation, effortless acceleration, ability to “fill up” at home). If they work for you the really work well. If they don’t, then they don’t work at all…there isn’t much middle ground.

      I love manuals. Unlike most complainers who proclaim “save the manuals” then buy a 25 year old Miata, I purchased one new recently. I think some makers get it (those offering manuals as a for cost option) but by in large, they are anchored to dealerahips outside of hot hatches and sports cars.

  • avatar
    Art Vandelay

    Why can I not head over to my Acura dealer and grab a Civic Type R with Integra badges and a body that doesn’t look like a kid drew it in study hall.

    Why is the closest thing I can get to a Fit SI a dealer added performance pack that does nothing for power.

    Why does the current NSX make me miss the old one.

    Honda needs to figure this out. Then worry about what is currently a niche market that has underperformed growth expectations since 2010.

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