Tesla On CARB ZEV Mandate: “The Mandate Is Already Far Too Weak”
In response to California laying out ZEV guidelines for smaller automakers, Tesla Motors basically says that the existing guidelines are already far too weak, so why make it even easier for automakers to comply.
Tesla’s response comes via Diarmuid O’Connell, vice president of business development:
“The mandate is already far too weak.I don’t think it was ever conceived that a pure-play electric car company like Tesla could exist, let alone thrive, but we have. The inconvenient truth is that our success has revealed the weakness of the mandate.”
“Credit revenue used to move the needle at Tesla. It doesn’t anymore, and it hasn’t for some time. What is a strategic driver of the company is to put as many EVs on the road as possible, whether they’re ours or whether they’re produced by other manufacturers.”
Tesla doesn’t seem too thrilled by a push from some automakers that would, if passed, replace ZEV mandates with an e-miles formula, thus allowing compliance for some automakers through sales of plug-in hybrids.
“Those companies have “access to the same financial markets that enabled Tesla to raise all of the funding it needed to launch electric vehicles,” Ken Morgan, Tesla’s director of business development and government affairs, testified during the hearing.”
“The problem, Morgan said, is not that the rules are too strict but that they are too lenient, with too many ZEV credits being made available to automakers. He said all automakers could comply from now until 2022 without changing their product mix at all, simply by using their existing credits — and until 2023 if they bought credits from Tesla to supplement their stockpiles.”
Next year, California will fully reviews its ZEV guidelines. The prediction is that the state won’t weaken its laws:
“I don’t think California is going to roll back the standards,” said Simon Mui, an environmental advocate who runs the California vehicle program at the Natural Resources Defense Council. “Now that we have leaders within the industry with a competitive advantage in EVs, it’s a very different game than it was 10 years ago.”