Visiting a gas station outside Oslo where the charging posts are now next to the petrol pumps.
Those who stay ask why they got an electric car.
Thinking someone should say something about the climate or something.
- The economy, the economy!
A family father answers on the way to Ålesund.
He glances at our rental car, a model he intends to buy.
Because his old electric car has to be "refueled" seven times to complete the stretch.
With a modern car with greater battery capacity, he expects to only have to stop once along the road.
A wallet issue
Yes, it's progressing, both in terms of car range and price.
The former is getting longer, the second less and less.
It is especially affordable for Norwegians to opt out of the fossil car.
Already in the 90's they were electric car pioneers (see here how the pop band A-ha contributed to it).
Then followed a long series of financial incentives.
The special "car purchase fee", which is a tax that can amount to several hundred thousand on a new car, does not apply to electric cars that are also VAT-exempt.
Discount on the toll.
In rush hour traffic, they are allowed to drive in public lanes and so on…
The question is rather - what has not been done to push new car buyers to electricity?
In this country, you do not have to be a big environmental friend to look away from the fossil car.
It is enough to look down at the wallet.
-I saved SEK 3,500 a month on buying an electric car.
I compare with what I paid for the old petrol car, states a woman we meet at a lot of vacant charging posts in Lier, outside Drammen.
Sold crashed share of electric cars in the world
Almost everyone we talk to says it's a wallet issue for them.
Christina Bu, general secretary of the Norwegian Electric Car Association, who lobbies against politicians in the issue, also highlights the money as crucial because today the largest proportion of electric cars in the world are sold in Norway.
In 2021, there were about 70% pure electric cars (hybrids, in addition) in new car sales.
In January 2022, it was up to 84%.
- We will certainly reach 100% before the goal set by the government: zero new fossil cars sold by 2025, Christina Bu believes.
Only politicians are not too quick to tax electric cars, she adds.
If there was a lack of money in the Norwegian Treasury to continue to subsidize electric cars, then maybe they can squander a little of the oil fund?
Would hardly be noticed.
Last year alone, Norway sold fossil fuels to the outside world for SEK 825 billion.
But now we should not be like that.
What Norway does at home and what Norway exports, one would probably like to say here are two different things.
Lessons from Norway
And if there is one thing Sweden should learn from the Norwegian electric car boom, it is that you can get people to do almost anything for money.
Like freezing at a lonely charging post along the road for half an hour without access to a toilet or hot coffee.
Even in Norway, it is still far from all gas stations that have added charging posts.
But that is about to change.
- If only the cars come - they will be enough - then the chargers will come.
And now those who own the gas stations have begun to attract electric drivers as well.
The market will solve the expansion, even if support may be needed in sparsely populated areas, says Christina Bu at the Norwegian Electric Car Association.
Pediatrics to cure
But at the charging station where I try to recharge the battery before I return the car, it's just cold and dull.
And when I have to finish charging, the charging cable gets stuck in the socket on the car.
The support answers quickly when I call, try to restart the charger, but end up stating that they do not know how to solve the problem.
They suggest I read the car's manual.
After a bit of research, it turns out that you have to press the "unlock" button on the remote control while pulling hard on the charger.
Why did I not think about it?
There are still some childhood illnesses to cure before the electric car is really the new normal.
But it is on a very good path.Keywords: