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Kansas City-area dealerships, economist weigh in as electric cars see increase in demand

Charging stations for electric vehicles
Posted at 6:30 PM, Jul 13, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-13 19:43:32-04

LEE'S SUMMIT, Mo. — As the price of gas continues to go up, more people are looking at buying electric cars, including Chisa Wicoxon.

“It’s still okay, but gas prices go up high for sure and it’s not comfortable,” Wicoxon said. “So not immediately, but if we have a chance to replace my car, it’s going to be electric one.”

Ronnie Vargas, a Bronco and Lightening Order Specialist at Bob Sight Ford in Lee’s Summit, says they too are seeing an increase in electric car sales.

“With gas prices where they are, they’d rather make the jump now to get the switch going, to make it to where they can charge it at home and avoid those gas prices,” Vargas said. “105 lightening orders, about 25 Mache, we’ve got the Maverick Trucks, which are the new hybrid trucks Ford just released. We probably have 40 to 50 of those still waiting as well.“

Vargas adds the demand for electric vehicles right now is through the roof, while supply right now is just trying to keep up.

“Everybody’s having the same chip issues. There's the chip shortages, there's rubber shortages right now, there's part shortages with different pieces of equipment on some of them, going from the front of the car all the way to the back,” Vargas said.

However, local supply chain expert Larry Wigger, says trying to save money at the pump with an electric car could cost you more in other areas of your budget.

“The purchase price. Maybe it’s your monthly payment or lease payment, but how much is the vehicle costing," Wigger said. "And then on the fuel consumption, maybe on the electric vehicle you might want to consider power usage, convenience in charging it, insurance, taxes."

Wigger adds there are some things to think about when purchasing an electric vehicle.

“Do you have convenient access to overnight charging? Do you need to charge it at your workplace? If you are using it to commute, or are you paying for charging stations along the way and what are those costing you?" he said.

Whether working to save more money at the pump or not, Wigger and Vargas say it’s important to make a purchase that fits your budget.