Welcome to Tesla Motors Club
Discuss Tesla's Model S, Model 3, Model X, Model Y, Cybertruck, Roadster and More.
Register

Has anyone convinced an anti-EV person to buy an EV?

slam

Member
Jun 11, 2014
23
13
Lam
Just curious about this. I'm sure we've all had conversations with friends or acquaintances where as soon as you say, "I drive a Tesla", they reply with concern about your "bad" decision and how they would never buy an EV.

I've also heard the usual arguments that I'm sure everyone has heard from "the battery technology is too new" (got this one last year), "they don't work in the cold", "they can catch on fire", "the range is still enough for my epic 2000 km trip without stopping, one that I make every 5 years", "they pollute more then gas cars", etc. I'm very civil when I tear down their arguments, but I end up only winning a debate, nothing more.

Has anyone found arguments that are convincing enough to convert an anti-EV person to being pro-EV in which they end up buying an EV? This came to mind when, after being asked questions about my car, from a friend, they still ended up buying a comparatively priced new fossil-car because my car (Model-S 70D) "only had 400 km range". :confused: (yes, they do live in a house that they own, so charging would not have been a problem).
 

TexLaw

Member
Jan 29, 2017
484
445
Bellaire, TX
Frankly, I think you're whizzing into the wind if you are trying to convince any one who already has made up one's mind against it. There's no profit in that, whatsoever.

Now, if you have someone who is on the fence, just answer their questions and give your experience.
 

S'toon

Knows where his towel is
Apr 23, 2015
3,702
3,748
AB
People make a mistake when they think that a decision made by raw emotion and tribalism can be won just by using logic.
 
  • Like
Reactions: ChadS

slam

Member
Jun 11, 2014
23
13
Lam
Maybe "anti-EV" was too strong a term to use... I really should have said "EV-unenlightened" , It's too bad I can't edit my first post.

I do like TexLaw's analogy, it is almost like whizzing in the wind. LOL

I even find when people are on the fence, they'll still end up getting a fossil-car because it's just more familiar to them.
 

Eclectic

Member
Nov 8, 2014
787
1,401
Montana
I've talked people OUT of an EV...they aren't the right vehicles for everyone and some people get caught up in all the hype/buzz and don't realize that there are lots of downsides to EV ownership.

For example, my brother liked our P85D and wanted to buy one for himself. The problem is that he lives way outside the supercharger network and drives a LOT every day. It made no sense for him and I explained why and he ended up with a Mercedes diesel. I've had to talk a few other people off the EV ledge as well.
 
  • Like
  • Disagree
Reactions: P85Dave and SSedan

Merrill

Merrill
Jan 23, 2013
4,015
1,514
Sonoma, California
I have been trying to convert several friends and if your not educated and have all the above misconceptions it is a tough road. Until now they said that Tesla’s are to expensive, I bring up the Model 3 and then get cannot go on a trip etc. I think the word electric just makes people think that once you leave your house where do you “fill up”. They are good with doing a hybrid but an all electric car is not something they can understand or just do not want to understand. I still try, someday you will not be allowed to drive a hybrid or gas car in some parts of the world.
 

ChadS

Last tank of gas: March 2009
Jul 16, 2009
3,359
2,769
Redmond, WA
As s'toon said, somebody emotionally opposed to EVs is going to stay that way even if they keep losing arguments to you. They will just switch to another argument.

The best chance for success is to change their emotional outlook. Take them for a ride. Let them drive it. Let them see how much you enjoy the car, and how much you are saving compared to a "comparable" gas car (a tricky bit as many think a comparable gas car is a Prius).

Once they start asking questions about how to make the car work, rather than giving arguments about why it won't, then you have a chance of convincing them. (Though, as Eclectic said, make sure it will really work for them first! Automakers aren't making a wide variety yet, and the charging infrastructure isn't everywhere yet, so they are not right for everybody. Yet.)
 
  • Like
Reactions: Sparky

Sparky

Member
Aug 13, 2012
557
2,720
Glendale,CA
I don't try to take apart their arguments. Certainly with cost as a factor I will concede to them that most EVs don't pencil out relative to a basic car. But, they're damn fun. And driving a Tesla is like every day is my birthday.
Then I ask them if they've driven one. Then I offer a test drive. If there's any hope, that usually does it (or at least when they get back into their ICE and realize what a POS it is to drive).
 
Last edited:
  • Like
Reactions: gene

2012MS85

Member
Apr 26, 2017
401
454
Blue Grass, IA
As s'toon said, somebody emotionally opposed to EVs is going to stay that way even if they keep losing arguments to you. They will just switch to another argument.

The best chance for success is to change their emotional outlook. Take them for a ride. Let them drive it. Let them see how much you enjoy the car, and how much you are saving compared to a "comparable" gas car (a tricky bit as many think a comparable gas car is a Prius).

Once they start asking questions about how to make the car work, rather than giving arguments about why it won't, then you have a chance of convincing them. (Though, as Eclectic said, make sure it will really work for them first! Automakers aren't making a wide variety yet, and the charging infrastructure isn't everywhere yet, so they are not right for everybody. Yet.)
I agree with ChadS - "Take them for a test ride/drive!" A decade ago, I was an EV-denier...until 2011 when Tesla showed up at Berkshire Hathaway's annual shareholder meeting with two shiny Roadsters from their Denver office (that two sales reps drove to Omaha, with the sole purpose of giving free test drives to Berkshire shareholders). My main point of reference on EV's was Warren Buffett's then-recent 10% purchase in BYD, which is the #1 Chinese EV manufacturer who made the ugliest EVs on the planet, with no sex appeal whatsoever, and merely the crap-made-in-China reputation. But then I drove the Roadster and knew I'd someday own a Tesla (I waited several years for the more practical MS85). 100% of my friends, family and strangers who have ridden in my S have yearned for one. Folks simply can't believe how fast, cool, and fun it is. Oh, and I also bought a Volt and Cadillac ELR, so I clearly converted myself all-in and I don't discriminate against non-Teslas (even BYD has started making better looking EV SUVs for the Chinese market).
 

TaoJones

Beyond Driven
Nov 10, 2014
3,064
3,028
The Americas
I generally just point and laugh at such people. With them it's the same 5 or 10 tired talking points from talk radio and similar that are so easily debunked now. I call these people sheeple - they'd rather have their ideology than a solution.

The truly unaware are much more fun with whom to interact. Once one gets past the cost misperceptions (the average new car sold in the States today costs $36,000 - so it's simple to juxtapose a $45K CPO in terms of TCO (total cost of ownership)) and range anxiety, that pretty much leaves geography and infrastructure.
 
  • Like
Reactions: gene

dhrivnak

Active Member
Jan 8, 2011
4,497
3,900
NE Tennessee
Just curious about this. I'm sure we've all had conversations with friends or acquaintances where as soon as you say, "I drive a Tesla", they reply with concern about your "bad" decision and how they would never buy an EV.

I've also heard the usual arguments that I'm sure everyone has heard from "the battery technology is too new" (got this one last year), "they don't work in the cold", "they can catch on fire", "the range is still enough for my epic 2000 km trip without stopping, one that I make every 5 years", "they pollute more then gas cars", etc. I'm very civil when I tear down their arguments, but I end up only winning a debate, nothing more.

Has anyone found arguments that are convincing enough to convert an anti-EV person to being pro-EV in which they end up buying an EV? This came to mind when, after being asked questions about my car, from a friend, they still ended up buying a comparatively priced new fossil-car because my car (Model-S 70D) "only had 400 km range". :confused: (yes, they do live in a house that they own, so charging would not have been a problem).
Yes, so do not give up. Some people like the low maintenance, some low fuel costs and some the performance. And depending on their needs an EV can work. They are not for everyone, at least not just yet. But hopefully that will change by next year.
 

SSedan

Active Member
Jul 24, 2017
2,948
2,589
Greenville Wisconsin
I haven't gotten anyone to buy an EV but have gotten a few folks to say they are likely to in the next few years as more middle of the road options appear.

HONESTY is huge, admit cold beats the crap out of range and before someone argues, try owning one in a climate that sees -15f a bunch of times a winter with an unheated garage and exposed parking at work.

Be HONEST about the fact the exorbitant insurance cost puts a big dent in "fuel savings".

I tell them for a 400mile road trip that you were going to stop for lunch on a Tesla adds no time to the trip but beyond that will and explain why.

I will tell then you shouldn't charge to 100% all the time but that I leave with 200mile of range every morning.

Tell them the heat is electric resistance heat so it does consume range.

Admit 4 year service is $850.

Tell them 75mph reduces range but 45mph increases so you have the safety net.

Admit your 4yo car has lost 7 miles to battery degradation.

Give them the "bad" and you can help them feel prepared like there aren't any insurmountable surprises.

IMO those who pretend they cost nothing to own ignoring the maintenance costs, ignoring the very expensive insurance etc. tell them what cold does to range and a little about why, if oversell you leave too many ways for the other person to find info that "disproves" what you said and they don't trust it.
 

Takumi

Member
Aug 25, 2006
712
347
IL
You're asking the wrong question/s or rather make them see that they're asking the wrong questions.

The question is: "What's it going to cost you?"

Make them examine their life. Open their eyes.

In short, give 'em a ride!
 
  • Like
Reactions: gene

gregd

Active Member
Dec 31, 2014
2,585
1,802
CM98
My interactions with non-EVers have always been brief, and generally enlightening to them, but there is no way to know whether the one question I answered was the one critical issue they needed to change their perspective. It's unlikely, of course, but it's also a step in the right direction. Given enough steps, and perhaps?

Over time, I've refined my answers to the most common questions, leaving them with a question in order to get them to think a bit differently about how they view cars. The biggest challenge seems to be getting over how different an EV appears to be. Relating them to something they already know, I think, can be effective in getting over those fears.

Q: "How far can you go on a charge?"
A: "Over 200 miles, but it hardly ever matters. How often would you go to a gas station if every morning you magically woke up to a full tank?"

Q: "How long does it take to charge?"
A: "A few hours if you have a good charging setup, but it really doesn't matter. How long does it take your cell phone to charge? You plug the car in when you get home, and it's done long before you get up in the morning, so for me it only takes a few seconds, just like my cell phone."

The one opportunity I haven't quite figured out yet, is when they simply say "Nice car!". My response is usually just a smile and a "Thank you, it's a lot of fun.", but it seems like there's an opportunity there that I'm not taking full advantage of.
 
  • Like
Reactions: gene

Products we're discussing on TMC...

About Us

Formed in 2006, Tesla Motors Club (TMC) was the first independent online Tesla community. Today it remains the largest and most dynamic community of Tesla enthusiasts. Learn more.

Do you value your experience at TMC? Consider becoming a Supporting Member of Tesla Motors Club. As a thank you for your contribution, you'll get nearly no ads in the Community and Groups sections. Additional perks are available depending on the level of contribution. Please visit the Account Upgrades page for more details.


SUPPORT TMC
Top