Soaring Gas Prices Drive Growing Demand for Electric and Hybrid Vehicles in Amarillo

AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) — With gasoline prices soaring, an Amarillo car dealership says it is seeing a growing demand for electric or hybrid vehicles.

Street Volkswagen in Amarillo says many customers are swapping the pump for electric vehicle charging stations.

“The fact that we can charge two or three times a week at night, we skip the gas pump, the vehicle has a range of about 260 to 275 miles,” said electric car owner Shane Giese.

John Luciano, owner of Street Volkswagen, says not only are people coming for hybrid and electric vehicles, but for anything more fuel-efficient.

“I’m not sure I want to convert my house and have a plug and I don’t know if I’m there yet, but what have you got that holds 30-40 miles. I just went to the gas station and it was $5 and my car has 25 gallons and it was $125 and I can go through it in less than a week and even if it’s $500 a month in fuel, I’m not sure I can do it,” Luciano said.

He says the problem with this growing demand is not having inventory on their lots.

“If I buy one, it’s gone, so pretty much everything right now, all of our Volkswagens are pretty much pre-sold,” Luciano said.

At this time last year, he says the lot would be filled with around 400 new cars on the lot and there are now less than 10.

He says if someone wants a car they probably have to order it and once it arrives they can pick it up.

Another problem they face is the shortage of chips, saying the situation between Russia and Ukraine makes it even worse.

“Some of the chips were built there, wiring harnesses are built there, it’s a great country for labor, building auto parts, which is even going to put downward pressure on the current market,” said Luciano.

He says one thing consumers may not think about is that the chip isn’t just necessary for the car.

“You have chips that can’t fit in a part and that part is the part the factory needs to fix their machine to make the part I need for the car, and it’s only getting worse “, said Luciano.

He says an average car has around 3,000 tokens.

Many companies are starting to build more basic cars, using fewer chips to circumvent the shortage.

Luciano says his personal prediction is that the shortage will continue throughout the year.

“I think next year we’ll start to get our hands on it, maybe a few factories that have been built for the chips will probably come online and get there, but that’s probably still 12 months and a considerable amount of money,” Luciano said. .

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