Letters to the Editor: Elon Musk’s behavior and other reasons for slowing EV sales

Electric vehicles charge at a Tesla Supercharger station in Santa Monica in 2022.
Electric vehicles charge at a Tesla Supercharger station in Santa Monica in 2022.
(Myung J. Chun / Los Angeles Times)

To the editor: I just purchased a Hyundai Ioniq 6 electric vehicle. While I feel the Tesla Model Y is an exceptional value for an electric SUV, I simply could not buy a Tesla product because its chief executive, Elon Musk, is such a toxic public figure. (“California EV sales are falling. Is it just temporary, or a threat to state climate goals?” Feb. 15)

Also, it infuriates me that he criticizes California (and moved his headquarters to Texas) even though Californians are his bread and butter.

I would add that the EV dealers themselves undermine sales with incredibly high markups that add to already expensive products. Tesla, to its credit, doesn’t have obnoxious markups, just an obnoxious leader.


The Ioniq 6 is simply the best car I’ve ever bought. Once the charging network issues are resolved, and there is price parity with gas-powered vehicles, EVs will dominate the car industry and help us achieve our emission reduction goals.

George Garcia, Long Beach


To the editor: Five years ago, I bought a Tesla Model 3.

I am not a fan of Musk’s morbid wealth, politics or wacky personality, but I am a fan of EVs that help the environment because they produce less pollution than vehicles that run on gas. This is true even though much of our electricity is still generated with fossil fuels.

Affordable EVs and more charging stations will attract future consumers. Anything the government can do to improve or streamline the process will help.

Carol Stansbury, Torrance


To the editor: My next car will likely be an EV, but I have postponed the purchase for these reasons:

  • Plug compatibility. Europe and many countries have a standard plug, but not the U.S. Manufactures are slowly converting to Tesla’s plug for the U.S. market.
  • Reliability. It takes a few years to work out the bugs in new technology.
  • Lack of fast-charging stations.
  • Lack of affordable cars. Manufacturers are selling their larger, higher-priced EVs here while offering lower-cost models abroad.

Countries like Norway have made it easy for people to purchase and use EVs. The U.S. needs to do the same.


Alan Coles, Long Beach


To the editor: My husband and I have an electric pickup truck that we use to tow a travel trailer. If we need to stop to charge, we first have to find a place to disconnect the trailer, then drive to the charging station, then drive back to reconnect the trailer before continuing on our trip.

Our last trip from Palm Springs back home to Ventura took 13 hours. At our planned stop to charge, all six chargers were offline. I stayed in the trailer with the dogs while my husband ended up visiting four other charging stations.

He could get only an 80% charge, which necessitated making another stop.

Linda Millstone, Ventura


To the editor: The quote in this article that the “government and automakers have spent billions of dollars on something that consumers may not want” was truly depressing.


The question is, do consumers really want the alternative, the worsening floods, fires and droughts that come with climate change?

It is clear to us as EV owners that the problem is the lack of reliable charging stations and the anxiety that this causes drivers. Cost is not the issue. By eliminating the cost of gas and significantly reducing maintenance over the lifetime of your vehicle, EVs such as the Chevrolet Bolt are actually cheaper than fossil-fuel cars.

If California wants to live up to its climate promises, it must ensure that the necessary infrastructure is built as quickly as possible. This is not a choice. It is the only option if we want a livable planet for future generations.

Leslie Simon and Marc Bender, Woodland Hills