There are some sensical reasons to not be a Tesla fan. Purely electric vehicles are still expensive, early going and not terribly practical for people with long commutes. They take all night to charge, they won’t cross country, Tesla’s Supercharger stations are hardly anywhere. Still, even if you can’t fall in love with the company’s progress, its ability to cut us from our oil dependence or the high quality of their Model S sedan, you can keep this in mind: they paid off their government-issued alternative fuels loan super early. Nine years early.
I guess that could be another point against Tesla: its existence is largely attributed to the US federal government. Even as Tesla has succeeded – and is now selling more cars than they had previously predicted – other companies that the government has invested in have failed. Another electric vehicle maker, Fisker, closed up shop earlier this year after a controversial run of building cars that spontaneously combusted and cooking their books to stay head of loan repayments. Solyndra is another infamous entity that President Obama backed, but the company fell apart when their technology wound up being too expensive to reach the market. There’s no way to recover that money and it’s an acceptable point that the government shouldn’t be playing with the market. At the same time, electric vehicles simply wouldn’t exist were it not for government investment. Ditto space travel, which is still largely government subsidized despite its claims to privatization.
The libertarian in me is smirking at the whole thing, but I’d really just love to drive one. Any time you wanna stop by, Tesla. Any time…