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posted by mrpg on Wednesday January 31, @04:00AM   Printer-friendly
from the but-but-but-the-fancy-brochure-said dept.

CNN Reports: https://www.cnn.com/2024/01/11/business/hertz-tesla-selling/index.html

Hertz, which has made a big push into electric vehicles in recent years, has decided it's time to cut back. The company will sell off a third of its electric fleet, totaling roughly 20,000 vehicles, and use the money they bring to purchase more gasoline powered vehicles.

Electric vehicles have been hurting Hertz's financials, executives have said, because, despite costing less to maintain, they have higher damage-repair costs and, also, higher depreciation.

"[C]ollision and damage repairs on an EV can often run about twice that associated with a comparable combustion engine vehicle," Hertz CEO Stephen Scherr said in a recent analyst call.

And EV price declines in the new car market have pushed down the resale value of Hertz's used EV rental cars.

[...] For rental car companies like Hertz, which sell lots of vehicles in the used car market, depreciation has a big impact on their business, and is a major factor when deciding which cars to have in their fleets.

SoylentNews previously reported when Hertz was expanding their EV fleet.


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  • (Score: 5, Informative) by DadaDoofy on Wednesday January 31, @03:09PM (22 children)

    by DadaDoofy (23827) on Wednesday January 31, @03:09PM (#1342513)

    While all of the comments here (so far) focus on a lack of chargers, it's a red herring. TFA makes no mention of a lack of chargers being a factor in Hertz deciding to dumping 20,000 EVs. For years, we've been told lie after lie to advance the false narrative that EVs are cheaper to own than ICE vehicles. Before there was a significant used car market for EVs, it was relatively easy to fool people in this regard. Fortunately, that is no longer the case. Here is another article that goes into more detail about the nightmare in store for those needing to repair their EVs.

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/money/other/new-electric-vehicle-deemed-total-loss-after-battery-replacement-costs-more-than-car-itself/ar-AA1maEUW [msn.com]

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  • (Score: 3, Informative) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday January 31, @04:18PM (2 children)

    by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday January 31, @04:18PM (#1342517)

    I do believe that EVs are cheaper to own and operate, TCO, for people who buy new vehicles. But: the cost-per-mile is distributed differently. You only pay (roughly) 25% as much "at the pump" as you do for gasoline, but the batteries are depreciating at a rate roughly twice the cost of the electricity charging them, so overall savings is more like 25%, not 75%

    I also believe that EVs are a bad bet for a used vehicle purchase. Market perception (and therefore values) is going to be influenced by things other than cost of operation and depreciation for many years to come, so that's going to skew the whole thing, including TCO for new vehicle purchasers who sell out early, like Hertz. Fear of high maintenance costs will fight against the "luxury halo" effect of getting a Tesla for 1/2 what it cost new...

    I'd be willing to bet that Hertz has identified an "irrationally high valuation" in the used EV market at the moment, and they want to grab it before it gets away.

    Tangential puns: Hertz is fundamentally incompatible with the DC voltage coming from the EV batteries, they need to rectify this by discharging some of their EV fleet to stop the pain.

    --
    🌻🌻 [google.com]
    • (Score: 2) by xorsyst on Friday February 02, @04:58PM (1 child)

      by xorsyst (1372) on Friday February 02, @04:58PM (#1342827)

      The "at the pump" cost in the UK is now about the same as petrol, per-mile, when rapid charging. It's ludicrous. Obviously at-home charging is much cheaper, but in the 3 years I've had an EV, the rapid cost has gone up over 400% for long-distance travel.

      • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Friday February 02, @05:12PM

        by JoeMerchant (3937) on Friday February 02, @05:12PM (#1342834)

        Not so obviously. The cost of electricity varies a lot around the world. Costa Rica pays a bit over double for their home electricity what we do in Florida...

        I suppose EV owners might tolerate a 400% premium for rapid charging on the road to cover the cost of infrastructure rollout. Sounds like something that would need regulation to make sure the premium goes away, eventually.

        Florida had a fair number of toll bridges back in the day, tolls supposed to cover cost of construction of the bridge like ferry tolls covered the cost of ferry operations. Once the bridges were paid off, a lot of them went toll free, though some retained the tolls to continue "traffic shaping" because without the tolls too many people would choose to use the bridge instead of an alternate route.

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  • (Score: 1) by khallow on Wednesday January 31, @05:24PM (4 children)

    by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Wednesday January 31, @05:24PM (#1342528) Journal
    Sounds like the problem then is a lack of a secondary market for batteries. Suppose there was such a market selling new batteries for about a third to half of the dealer and a used/reconditioned battery market even below that? How would that change things?
    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by JoeMerchant on Wednesday January 31, @06:15PM (3 children)

      by JoeMerchant (3937) on Wednesday January 31, @06:15PM (#1342532)

      >lack of a secondary market for batteries.

      And the discovery of a gigantic lithium deposit in the wasteland otherwise known as the Salton Sea [undark.org] just cut the knees out from under the US lithium battery recycling market.

      Any value left in past-end-of-life lithium battery packs will be overwhelmed by the risk of fire in most use cases.

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      • (Score: 3, Insightful) by khallow on Thursday February 01, @02:11AM (2 children)

        by khallow (3766) Subscriber Badge on Thursday February 01, @02:11AM (#1342577) Journal
        I don't think the problem here is expensive lithium, but rather the expensive product that comes straight from the dealership. Some competition would help with that.
        • (Score: 2) by JoeMerchant on Thursday February 01, @02:39AM (1 child)

          by JoeMerchant (3937) on Thursday February 01, @02:39AM (#1342579)

          Tesla would seem to be the only upstart with enough funds to make a serious market play.

          Stellantis (Ram) is ponderously approaching market, hopefully they can launch models that make enduring profits. Chevy and Ford seem to have rushed out poorly conceived models and market research prototypes that have proven unsustainable rather quickly.

          I hold great hopes for the VW ID.Buzz, but I'm afraid it will hit the US highly overpriced. Canoo is already near or on market with similar interesting vehicles, but they seem as financially shaky as Rivian and the rest.

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          🌻🌻 [google.com]
          • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Friday February 02, @08:46PM

            by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Friday February 02, @08:46PM (#1342861) Homepage Journal

            Studebaker was a buggy maker that was dragged kicking and screaming into the automotive age, the last one. Ford and Chevy are today's equivalent.

            --
            mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
  • (Score: 4, Interesting) by weirsbaski on Wednesday January 31, @06:54PM (1 child)

    by weirsbaski (4539) on Wednesday January 31, @06:54PM (#1342539)

    TFA makes no mention of a lack of chargers being a factor in Hertz deciding to dumping 20,000 EVs. For years, we've been told lie after lie to advance the false narrative that EVs are cheaper to own than ICE vehicles.

    A big part of EV savings is that charging it is cheaper than gas. But Hertz wasn't paying for the gas (customers fill the car before returning), so those savings didn't propagate to Hertz's bottom line.

    For your Hyundai link, an almost-new car was in an accident that damaged its most expensive parts, (financially) totaling it. Really sucks for the owner, but it's not like that situation is new, or unique to EV's. The relevant question is whether this is more common for EV's, or is this just an anecdote?

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 31, @07:40PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday January 31, @07:40PM (#1342549)

      > A big part of EV savings is that charging it is cheaper than gas.

      A big part of EV savings is that charging it at home (residential $/kWh rate) is cheaper than gas.

      ftfy

      I'll guess that most Hertz renters either:
        + get a free/cheap charge at their motel (overnight duration) or work destination (company perk)
        + if it's a service replacement rental, then they might keep up with 110VAC level 1 charging at home--but may need an adapter to do this?
        + get fleeced at a public charging station where the price is really high per kWh

  • (Score: 2) by Whoever on Wednesday January 31, @07:23PM (10 children)

    by Whoever (4524) on Wednesday January 31, @07:23PM (#1342547) Journal

    Alternatively, fossil fuel interests have decided that potential EV buyers have realizee d that their "you won't find a charger" trope is a lie and have moved onto new lies.

    The example you cite is an outlier. It's not representative.

    Hertz are also an outlier. Their cars are treated differently to cars owned by consumers.

    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Friday February 02, @08:53PM (9 children)

      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Friday February 02, @08:53PM (#1342864) Homepage Journal

      Alternatively, fossil fuel interests have decided that potential EV buyers have realizee d [sic] that their "you won't find a charger" trope is a lie and have moved onto new lies.

      No, that one's true. It's a hundred miles from here in Springfield, IL to St Louis, and there isn't a single charging station on I-55 between the cities, while there's at least one gas station off of almost every exit. I wish there was one in Litchfield, halfway there, so I wouldn't have to charge it to 100% before going, that reduces battery life.

      --
      mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
      • (Score: 2) by Whoever on Friday February 02, @09:28PM (8 children)

        by Whoever (4524) on Friday February 02, @09:28PM (#1342867) Journal

        1. As you point out, it's only 100 miles. Every modern EV should do that without charging on the route.

        2. There are Superchargers on the outskirts of both cities.

        3. There is a CCS charger in Litchfield. There is a CCS charger coming in Divernon and another coming in Hamel.

        Try again.

        • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Thursday February 08, @06:28PM (7 children)

          by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Thursday February 08, @06:28PM (#1343648) Homepage Journal

          Yes, it will make the round trip, but I've read the charging to 100% shortens the battery life. There is a charger at the south of Springfield, but where on the outskirts of the St. Louis area? Where in Litchfield is there a charger? If there are any there, they're sure well hidden.

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          mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
          • (Score: 2) by Whoever on Thursday February 08, @08:30PM (6 children)

            by Whoever (4524) on Thursday February 08, @08:30PM (#1343658) Journal

            Yes, it will make the round trip, but I've read the charging to 100% shortens the battery life.

            How often do you make the journey, only to turn around and drive back, without stopping? Many, if not most, modern EVs could make the return journey without charging to 100%. There isn't an EV built in the last 6 years that could not make the one-way journey with 80% charge, unless your are trying to do it in an electric golf cart.

            Occasional charging to 100% is OK. It's not recommended for every day. Are you driving this journey there and back with no stop every day?

            You show your ignorance about EVs with your comment about the fact that you don't know where the charger is. All your issues are based on your ignorance and biases, not actual facts. I can see the charger on a website commonly used by EV drivers, with actual drivers of various brands of EV reporting charging there.

            • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Saturday February 10, @09:08PM (5 children)

              by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Saturday February 10, @09:08PM (#1343890) Homepage Journal

              Yes, that's my point; there are no chargers between here and there anywhere near the interstate. I visit my friend and drive home, and plug it in. If there was a charger halfway there or almost there an 80% charge would do fine. What's annoying is the amount of money that flies past business people's noses and they don't grab it. There's money to be made and it's being ignored.

              You show your ignorance about EVs with your comment about the fact that you don't know where the charger is.

              It's in my trunk. Are you illiterate? THERE ARE NO CHARGERS WITHIN THIRTY MILES OF THE GOD DAMNED INTERSTATE!

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              mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
              • (Score: 2) by Whoever on Monday February 12, @07:50PM (4 children)

                by Whoever (4524) on Monday February 12, @07:50PM (#1344132) Journal

                You are still ignoring the one in Litchfield, close to the Interstate. There is one in Troy, close to the Interstate. How about Collinsville?

                According to one website for EV route planning, in my car, I could charge to 90%, do a round trip and arrive back with 9%. This isn't going to meaningfully impact the battery.

                You keeps saying it's not possible, but you are ignoring the facts that I show which say that it is.

                Perhaps it's not possible for YOUR EV to do the journey without charging to 100%, but it is possible for many EVs.

                • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Wednesday February 14, @03:00PM (3 children)

                  by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Wednesday February 14, @03:00PM (#1344411) Homepage Journal

                  The facts as you know them differ from the facts as I know them. Where in Litchfield and how close to the interstate? There's a group of eateries and gas stations about a mile off of the interstate, where are the signs reporting the charging station? I see all sorts of gas station signs. If it's there, it's well-hidden.

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                  mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
                  • (Score: 2) by Whoever on Wednesday February 14, @03:25PM (2 children)

                    by Whoever (4524) on Wednesday February 14, @03:25PM (#1344413) Journal

                    I don't believe that you actually own an EV, since you would know how to find chargers if you did.

                    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Sunday February 18, @06:34PM (1 child)

                      by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Sunday February 18, @06:34PM (#1345060) Homepage Journal

                      Here's [mcgrew.info] a picture of me, my daughters, and my car. The two times it tried to find a charger, the first time it found a charger that required a smartphone, but my carrier had no coverage there. I wound up being towed, I probably could have made it home from where I was when it warned I was low but it was the first trip I'd taken it on and trusted it. The unusable charger was thirty miles off of the interstate.

                      The second time I drove 20 miles out of my way, searching for the charger for 20 minutes on foot and discovering that its only marking was "out of order". Thankfully I had plenty of charge to get home. You can see why I don't trust that faulty database.

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                      mcgrewbooks.com mcgrew.info nooze.org
                      • (Score: 2) by janrinok on Sunday February 18, @06:54PM

                        by janrinok (52) Subscriber Badge on Sunday February 18, @06:54PM (#1345062) Journal

                        Here's [mcgrew.info] a picture of me, my daughters, and my car.

                        It's a good job I was wearing my spectacles! :D

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  • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Friday February 02, @08:43PM

    by mcgrew (701) <publish@mcgrewbooks.com> on Friday February 02, @08:43PM (#1342860) Homepage Journal

    No, the lack of chargers isn't a red herring, it's the sole disadvantage to piston cars. The battery cost is the red herring since they're warranted for a decade. How long does a V-8 drive train with its thousands of moving parts cost to replace?

    The truth is that advertising is what pays for news media, and they're not about to bite the hand that feeds them. EVs threaten removing billions of dollars from automakers, auto repair shops, auto parts stores, and the oil industry like a century ago when the automobile wiped out horse breeders, veterinarians, oat farriers, buggy makers and repairmen. The piston drive train is as obsolete as the horse and buggy were in 1924 before anybody realized they were obsolete.

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