Elon Musk says it's not surprising that internal combustion engines have a tendency to also combust externally. He believes that now that legacy OEMs are selling electric cars, we may begin to see a drop in EV fire coverage by the media. However, some Tesla fans argue that we could still see more coverage related to Tesla fires than its rivals' fires.
Tesla fires are still big news, even though they're very few and far between. The same has proven true with other automakers' EVs, such as the Chevrolet Bolt. This is all despite the fact that many reports over the years have made it abundantly clear that petrol-car fires are much more common than electric car fires.
A recent report by the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) reiterated what has been shared many times in the past. It noted that out of 100,000 vehicles sold, there are an average of 3,475 hybrid fires, 1,530 petrol-car fires, and 25 EV fires. While the results of this report are very telling, electric car fires still make headlines since EVs are still a relatively new technology, and anything negative or sceptical works to increase media outlets' viewership.
While all this information has been clear for some time, and most Tesla fans and early EV adopters have been aware of the truth, that hasn't necessarily been the case for petrol-car shoppers. One would think legacy OEMs would be pushing back against the false alarms over EV fires, but that wouldn't have made a whole lot of sense, until now.
In the past, most of the world's major automakers were only making petrol cars, especially for the US market. Even those that were making EVs in the US weren't working hard to sell them. In fact, in many cases, they were only offering them because they were forced to. If a legacy OEM went to bat against the media about EV fires in the past, it would have essentially been promoting Tesla.
Now that most automakers are producing compelling EVs that they actually want to sell, they'll likely have to help people overcome their fears about electric cars. Taking it a step further, they'd be smart to help dispel all the myths and advertise EVs' strengths and safety over petrol cars.
With all of that said, Whole Mars Catalog tweeted out information about the NTSB report on Twitter, which Tesla CEO Elon Musk replied to:
Do you think Musk is right? Will we see fewer articles about EV fires? Will we see more articles about Tesla fires but fewer about rivals' car fires? Should Tesla have a PR department to combat the negativity and help people and the media see the truth?
At this point, since people who are planning to buy a Tesla are likely already aware of the truth, it may make no difference. However, it still makes for an interesting conversation.