Electric vehicles out of reach for some like mechanics, manufacturers expect higher costs | Illinois

(The Center Square) — While the pain at the pump lingers and no signs are abating, some say the governor’s suggestion that more people buy electric vehicles is “deaf.”

Amid ongoing record inflation and record gasoline prices, Governor JB Pritzker saw a silver lining this week.

“People may be more likely to choose when they’re going to buy a new car to go electric because it’s much, much cheaper in the long run,” Pritzker said.

He wants Illinois to be a leader in electric vehicle production.

State Sen. Neil Anderson, R-Andalusia, said the governor was out of touch with what was happening on the ground.

“Loud tone is not a strong enough word for that statement,” Anderson said. “The single parent who has a 10 or 20 year old vehicle, who is trying to scrape together the money to get to work, talking about buying, on the cheap, a $60,000 electric vehicle, that’s ridiculous. “

Kevin Johnson, owner of Johnson and Johnson Auto Service Center in Springfield, said people are already trying to repair older vehicles to make them last as long as possible as inflation continues to impact personal finances. .

The increase in the number of electric vehicles will lead to increased costs for independent mechanics to obtain the necessary tools and training, which Johnson says will further increase costs for consumers.

“Some of those tuition fees could be a few thousand dollars for each employee,” Johnson told The Center Square. “It’s something out of my pocket that I have to pass on to the consumer to train these guys.”

For the building trades, Dean Graven of the Home Builders Association of Illinois said fuel is needed for everything from drying drywall to transporting and stacking trusses. He said going electric was unrealistic.

“We don’t have eclectic chargers, we don’t have electric cranes, we don’t have any,” Graven told The Center Square. “The technology may be here in 50 years. It’s not there now, so it’s just not something that’s going to be fixed very quickly.

According to AAA, gasoline prices in Illinois on Friday ranged from $4.12 in White County near Indiana and Kentucky to $4.73 in Cook County. The average diesel price in Illinois is $4.95.

A year ago, the regular gasoline average in Illinois was $2.98. For diesel last year, the average was $3.08.

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