Tesla’s Disappointing Numbers and More Car News This Week

Allow me to get a bit philosophical here: History is only smooth in retrospect. Few earth-shaking shifts are inevitable. A few steps forward, some more back. Change only looks easy from a rocking chair.

Which is all to say, it was a rocky week for electric vehicles, the motorized transports that are supposed to help us save the planet. Tesla underperformed in its first quarter production and delivery numbers, pulling that one-step-back routine after taking two steps forward in late 2018. The automaker attributed the discrepancy between vehicles produced and vehicles delivered to its overseas shipping operations, but that didn’t stop us from wondering: Is it possible that fewer people want to buy Teslas?

WIRED also this week got a look inside Audi’s E-tron factory in Belgium, the world’s first carbon-neutral electric-vehicle plant. The German automaker’s 37,000-square-meter photovoltaic farm feels like a win.

Also this week, we wondered about the road ahead for congestion pricing in New York City and got up close with the blood-toting drones flying over North Carolina. It’s been a week. Let’s get you caught up.


Stories you might have missed from WIRED this week

Surprise Tesla Fan of the Week

Turns out that not every day is a winding road: Singer Sheryl Crow had some trouble with her electric vehicle this week.

None other than Tesla CEO Elon Musk helped her troubleshoot, of course. Crow later tweeted that she’s still a fan of the automaker.

Stat of the Week

64 percent

The share of Americans who say they wouldn’t buy a self-driving car (if one existed), according to a new Reuters/Ipsos poll. Sixty-seven percent of respondents said driverless vehicles should also be held to a higher safety standard than traditional autos.

Required Reading

News from elsewhere on the internet

In the Rearview

Essential stories from WIRED’s canon
A quick ride in the hottest electric vehicle of 1997: A golf cart, of course.

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