Electric vehicles are gaining ground as more hit the roads. Some people are turning to these vehicles as alternatives not only for their wallets in response to soaring gas prices, but also to help the environment.
Local businesses in Bemidji come together to help educate the public about electric vehicles through owner testimonials. With everything from bikes to pickup trucks, the EV car show is a way for electric co-op Beltrami to introduce the public to what some see as the future of America’s highway.
“We started with hybrids and small things, okay, that maybe could be easier to power, but as battery technology has improved, the range has improved,” he said. said Gary Johnson, electric car owner. “In fact, trucks like…the Ford Lightning have a very big battery, so their range is very, very long.”
“There is a lot of interest in electric vehicles and the supply chain has been difficult,” said Beltrami electric communications specialist Angela Lyseng. “People can’t go to a dealership and just check out the vehicles on their lot, because there aren’t any. So it gives people the opportunity to see the vehicles they come from and see all the different models and styles in one place.
13 electric vehicles were on display at the auto show. Questions about each vehicle’s interior and exterior were answered, but some vehicles showed more than just their looks.
“[It’s] so simple in terms of what’s here. There’s no transmission, there’s no oil change, there’s no… engine,” Johnson added. “So it’s a very simple car and it’s just, for me, a technological advancement that it makes sense to adopt.”
With the passage of laws in other states like California, where the goal is to eliminate the sale of gas-powered vehicles by 2035, some may wonder if Minnesota is heading down the same path.
“I don’t think we’ll see that in Minnesota for a while,” Lyseng said. “The challenges right now are definitely sourcing. You have to be able to get the vehicles and right now people who are interested have to order them years in advance to get them.
Next year will mark Beltrami Electric’s fifth annual EV car show. Representatives say they hope to bring more examples of electric vehicles to show the breadth of what is available with this technology.