Jim O'Donnell, CEO and chairman of BMW
North America, recently sat down with the Detroit News
to discuss the ActiveE
-- an electric version of BMW's 1 Series coupe, available for lease in the US this fall. Most CEOs would've probably used the opportunity to wax PR poetic about their company's bold, forward-looking ethos, because that's what CEOs do. O'Donnell, however, used the occasion to let us in on a dirty little secret: EVs don't actually work
. According to O'Donnell's undoubtedly robust calculations, EVs won't work for "at least 90-percent" of the human population, at current battery ranges. The situation is so dire, in fact, that the US government shouldn't even bother wasting its $7,500 tax credits on frivolous things like innovation, national security and clean air.
"I believe in a free economy. I think we should abolish all tax credits. What they are doing is putting a bet on technology, which is not appropriate. As a taxpayer, I am not sure this is the right way to go."
O'Donnell went on to say he's "far more optimistic" about diesel's chances of increasing BMW's US market share -- because, you know, it's not like the oil industry gets any tax breaks, or anything. And it's not like diverting some money away from oil subsidies and putting it toward EV technology would create the "level playing field" that O'Donnell and his company so desperately need. No siree, the US energy market is just as pure and fair as it's always been -- and it certainly doesn't deserve to be corrupted by an EV tax credit pestilence. That said, O'Donnell would still really
appreciate it if we buy the battery-powered i3
when it launches in 2013. Who knows? He may even throw in a free bridge, too.