Tesla Pros and Cons

Tesla is one of the most recognizable brands in the world. Tesla was the first major car manufacturer to produce all-electric vehicles. Many people associate themselves with the brand and find it cool to say “I drive a Tesla.” Not to mention, they’re fun to drive!

Pros of Tesla Cars

  • Beautiful sleek and minimalist design.
  • Cool technology and features.
  • Zero emissions tests required.
  • Makes very little noise.
  • No engine vibration makes it feel like floating around.
  • No smelly exhaust when you’re sitting at a stop light.
  • You don’t have to pay high gas prices.
  • Good for city driving and finding parking.
  • Access to express and HOV lanes regardless of occupancy.
  • It forces you to take regular breaks on road trips to charge the battery.
  • No oil changes or other routine engine maintenance chores.
  • A low center of gravity improves handling, responsiveness, and ride comfort.
  • Tax credits, rebates, and other incentives for driving electric vehicles.

Cons of Tesla Cars

When considering innovations in clean energy and sustainability, you have to look at the whole picture, not just one part. We know Tesla vehicles create less pollution out of the tailpipe, but what about those batteries? Cutting down on greenhouse gases while destroying the earth mining for minerals doesn’t equal saving the planet!

This is a Tesla 4680 battery pack. As you can see, it takes up all of the space under the bottom of the car!

Source: https://www.torquenews.com/14093/new-tesla-4680-battery-summary-update-2021

One of the ugly downsides to EV batteries (and many electronics, for that matter) is the specialized materials that are labor intensive to obtain, and often come from dubious sources with a legacy of human rights violations. The bulk of necessary minerals for manufacturing the batteries come from China or Africa. Much of the labor in Africa is done by children under hazardous conditions, while China profits most.

To manufacture a Tesla battery, you need these basic raw materials:

  • Graphite
  • Cobalt
  • Lithium
  • Manganese
  • Aluminum
  • Nickel

Tesla is making great strides in the field of battery recycling. Tesla’s recycling efforts in 2021 yielded 1,500 tons of nickel and 200 tons of cobalt, among other materials. However, as demand for electric vehicles grows, we can anticipate ongoing debate about where these key minerals are sourced and how they are mined.

Conventional methods of mining battery metals can result in the emission of large amounts of greenhouse gases, air pollutants, and contaminated water and soil. Not to mention the amount of energy required to extract and process the raw materials.

For example, a large bucket loader is used to move the earth to obtain the minerals needed for these batteries. The Caterpillar 994A with a standard fuel tank holding 910 gallons and a 12 hour run time would consume 75.8 gallons of diesel per hour.

Tilak Doshi, a Global Research Institute Fellow, further explains, “Once on the road, the carbon dioxide emissions of EVs depends on the power-generation fuel used to recharge its battery. If it comes mostly from coal-fired power plants, it will lead to about 15 ounces of carbon-dioxide for every mile it is driven—three ounces more than a similar gasoline-powered car.”


Electric cars have their advantages. However, their benefit for the environment seems overrated. The truth is, direct comparisons are difficult to make due to the endless variables to take into account. As more information becomes available, it’s important to consider all factors to make the most sustainable decision when it comes to electric vehicles. The environmental benefits of electric cars in the long run will depend on Tesla’s approach to recycling and sustainability.

As Tesla continues to attempt to push the boundaries of electric vehicle technology, we trust that Tesla will continue to drive full speed ahead on battery technology and overall sustainability. Also, check out American Battery Technology Company. It’s a bunch of ex-Tesla engineers who just built an EV recycling facility outside of Reno. They are about to start mining lithium in southern Nevada using an environmentally friendly extraction method.

Electric vehicles have their place, and it’s great that people have a choice. Teslas are great, don’t get me wrong. Just don’t sit on your high horse and start virtue-signaling about your “clean” and “green” electric vehicle being superior in every way to a gas-powered internal combustion engine.

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