What’s Going On Here?

With Audi, Ford, Porsche and Hummer all flashing their new Electric Vehicle (EV) ranges during the SuperBowl primetime slot recently, it seems EVs are finally being taken seriously. But is Arya Stark driving an electric Audi enough to save the planet?

What Does This Mean?

99.9 million people tuned into the SuperBowl this year and around half of the car adverts were for EVs! The estimated $20m budget drop on the four adverts is certainly a sign that the auto industry is waking up to the issue of climate heating and building sustainability into their long term brand marketing strategies!

“Let’s drive to a more sustainable future.”


Audi nodded to the fact the EV is only “more sustainable”, but we still fear the ads make consumption desirable and gives drivers the licence to drive around willy nilly without an eco-conscious.

The GMC Hummer EV claims to be “zero emissions”, and despite this being near true on the road (beyond tyre wear), it isn’t the case in its entirety. Charge this monster up during the day in the US, and you are likely to be charging it from COAL (30%), Natural Gas (34%) and Nuclear (20%).

In addition, there are embodied emissions from the manufacture of new vehicles. These typically range from 10-30% of the total lifetime emissions of a vehicle. The new-new-new, sell-sell-sell capitalist approach will, sadly never be sustainable.

Why Should We Care?

Changes to our buying habits and our behaviour need to change, and as scary as it sounds advertising is one of the biggest influencers in our lives. It’s the biggest and the ugliest brands that tend to have the largest budgets for marketing and the greatest potential impact.

Hopefully, this change in strategy develops further and rather than these big companies pushing products, they evolve to sell services, facilitating EV “usership” or sharing rather than selling personal ownership. After all, at any one time 96% of UK vehicles are parked doing nada!

Be Curious!

– There are private electric car-sharing systems in place around the country – check out E-car club and see if they have a service near you.!

– Rental companies like ZipCar are becoming easier and easier to use while the Curva can get you ensured on a mates car from as little as £8ph.

If you are going to drive:

– Drive efficiently. Driving at 55mpg versus 75mph could save you as much as 20% on your fuel and footprint bill! Drive in the highest gear possible (within the speed limit), don’t over-rev & pump them tires!

– If you have an electric vehicle, think about charging times. The UK has an app called GridCarbon that tells you what the UK grid is using at any one time. Some new EVs have smart charging so will do this for you!

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