GovLaunch: Government Gets Its First Fleet of Electric Cars

On Tuesday, the General Services Administration purchased the federal government’s first fleet of electric cars. The purchase coincides with the release of a new White House memo requiring all new federal vehicles to utilize alternative energy. The 116 new cars are a mix of Chevrolet Volts, Nissan Leafs and Think Cities and will be used in 20 agencies across the country. According to GSA, the new cars will save taxpayers $109,000 a year and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 260 tons.

U.S. Government Buys Its First Electric Vehicles

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Government may be open to electric – but the public isn’t! Read something yesterdaythat something like 6 out of 10 Americans surveyed for a USA Today/Gallup poll said they wouldn’t purchase an electric car — no matter how costly gas became.

Sebastian James

At $7 per gallon, I’m thinking that the trepidation would melt away. Electric cars are still waiting for their “Al Gore’s Kid Moment”, where the new technology shatters expectations and invites inqiry. You might recall Al Gore’s kid was pulled over for evading police at 100 mph. The stir wasn’t necessarily the evasion, it was the fact that the kid was driving a Prius. The fact that the Prius went over 100 mph shattered expectations because “real cars” go fast, and at the time the Prius wasn’t percieved as a “real car'”.

Alicia Mazzara

I agree, Sebastian, electric cars are still a big unknown, but all that could change with the right “moment.” I suspect that people are concerned about how far and fast they can go on a charge and where to recharge the car when it runs out. I don’t know a ton about them myself, butl like most new technologies, I think people will adopt it when it becomes clear that the benefits outweighing the costs.

Michael Kenneth Veh

The recharging infrastructure is also a key part of general acceptance. There are companies designing solar powered charging stations for parking lots, curbside chargers, and other setups that will make charging the cars easier and extend travel distances. Once those things are in place in early adopter cities, there will be more EV on the road and the public acceptance will quickly increase.


I suspect the public point of view is that they would rather pay for the $7 a gallon convenience (fill and go), and make an effort to limit their driving, rather than having to be cognizant of their trip range, planning for the recharge time, and the additional cost for battery replacement (the cars are already priced more to begin with). I think it’s sort of like those Best Buy ads running on tv right now where the message is the newer, quicker, better technology will be out tomorrow…so why not wait?