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If Santa’s sleigh was an electric vehicle, could he get all the way around the world on one charge?

(Rick Sander, CEO, Tuesday, December 10, 2019)

We have all probably seen the Mercedes commercial from a couple of year ago where Santa’s sleigh is a red Mercedes coupe, and the “reindeer” are eight other Mercedes cars. Clearly, this “sleigh” would not be able to make it around the Earth without refueling – the Earth’s polar circumference is about 24,860 miles, while the official EPA range of a Mercedes-AMG SLC43 is 426 miles. Given that this range is a little over 1/60th of the Earth’s circumference, Santa is going to have to stop a few times, but luckily gas stations are generally easy to find. What about if Santa was using an electric vehicle – would he be better off? While there isn’t an electric version of the Mercedes-AMG SLC43 yet, there are certainly other high-performance electric cars that Santa could consider.

The $90,000 Porsche Taycan all-electric car boasts a range of 310 miles (almost the same as the Mercedes), and a 0-60 mph time of under 3.5 seconds. If you have a little more money to spend (actually about $1M total),the Rimac ConceptOne has a range of 310 miles and a 0-60mph time of 2.5 seconds. Or you could get the soon-to-be released Tesla Roadster ($200,000), with a range of 620 miles and a 0-60mph time of 1.9 seconds. Of course, all three of these vehicles would need charging stations to make it “around the world”. The good news is that the number of EV charging stations continues to increase over time – Tesla has 1,063 stations operating 7,320 of its “Superchargers” alone. The number of publicly available Level 3 DC fast charging stations worldwide in 2018 was estimated by IEA at 140,000 chargers, so we are certainly getting near the point where gas stations and EV fast chargers are roughly even by number.

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