It can reasonably be said that no one is selling an economically viable electric vehicle today. Manufacturers will not have an economic return of the billions they are investing in a reasonable time.
These words, however, dates back to 2014. Although the prices of electric cars have not dropped at all in the meantime, something has begun to change. Smart, for example, decided to abandon thermal engines for good and to produce only zero-emission models as early as the beginning of 2020. Smart represents the choice of a small car manufacturer, which can reasonably afford to risk on limited numbers, but it is not alone in this choice.
Jaguar, Hyundai, Audi, BMW and Volkswagen, not to mention Nissan and Renault. All these automotive companies have taken to the field offering models for every price range, although you have to think that generally they all have a price of at least 10,000 euros, mainly due to the high costs of lithium batteries.
Not everything lithium glitters
As for private initiatives, they are simply indispensable. Not everyone, in fact, can afford to reload the car in their garage and almost no one can afford the luxury of putting in his garage a car potentially "lame" and unable to cope with a journey of more than 150-200 km - what, to date, stands as the maximum real autonomy of most models on the market.
In practice, buying an electric car does not bring any economic benefit even today. This is what has emerged from a study by the German Automobile Club (ADAC), after conducting a thorough study comparing electrical and thermal models. The basic problem is that the low cost of energy is not enough to amortise the higher initial expenditure, mainly due to the cost of lithium batteries. Probably, therefore, we will have to wait for a technological revolution that has a lot to do with chemistry.
A vehicle with hidden emissions
Having only taken into account CO2 emissions, the conclusion is that in order to make sense of the electric car, it is strictly necessary to supply it with clean energy produced from renewable sources. Otherwise, the benefits of having no local emissions will inexorably diminish, shifting the issue to the relocation of emissions from urban centres to more remote areas. Moreover, urban centres have already begun to declare war on diesel, not to mention the fact that the Dieselgate scandal has definitively sunk diesel from the mainstream market. Whether the future is electric or not, in short, is still very much unclear.