Is This How You Sell An Electric Car?

Tesla might have been the car of the year, but the recent flap between the company and the New York Times about the car’s actual range shows that the general population isn’t quite ready to embrace electric vehicles as their new automobiles. If electric vehicles are going to catch on, it’s going to take more than breakthrough tech. It’s also going to take some breakthrough marketing.

This video above, called “Gallons of Light,” is an ad for Tesla not sanctioned by the company. It was made by filmmaker Jordan Bloch after he saw Tesla’s current videos and thought he could do better.

The video depicts an idyllic family trip of actual Tesla owners, using Tesla’s solar-powered chargers. It is, as the voiceover says, “a road trip completely sponsored by the power of the sun.” Bloch’s ad positions the car squarely as an alternative to more wasteful means of transportation.

Is this the best way to sell EVs? Or should they be sold, like the Volt, based on cost savings from gas and the merits of the car itself? Surely, as EVs become more popular, companies will try both tactics. But as of now, the idea that people care about the environment enough to drop the $52,000 for a Model S seems hard to believe.MC