As frigid weather strands electric vehicles, one Tesla speaks out: 'This ain't my fault!'

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CHICAGO — You may have heard that we’ve been enduring a cold stretch here in the Midwest, and that the frigid temperatures have proved a headache for some electric-vehicle owners. 

The problem is fairly simple: Batteries don’t work as well when it’s really cold, reducing the range electric vehicles can travel. The batteries also charge slower. So the demand for EV charging has outpaced the EV-charger infrastructure. The result? A bunch of people with Teslas and other battery-powered cars have wound up stuck, or waiting in ridiculous lines to power up.

The mainstream media has focused on how this icy development is impacting humans, paying little attention to the vehicles themselves. So I set out, face to the negative-degree wind chill, and interviewed a red Tesla Model 3 standard-range sedan named Nikola, though he goes by Nik.

Here’s what he had to say:

What do I think about what’s going on with these temperatures and us cars? Nice of you to ask. About time. I’ll tell you what I think: IT’S FREAKIN’ COLD OUT HERE!! WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH YOU BIPEDAL WEIRDOS?!? WHO LIVES IN THESE CONDITIONS?!?

People clean a path from snow in front of a school in Wheeling, Ill., Friday, Jan. 12, 2024.
People clean a path from snow in front of a school in Wheeling, Ill., Friday, Jan. 12, 2024.

Sorry, I guess I’ve got some pent up frustration after spending the better part of a week FREEZIN’ MY (EXPLETIVE) TIRES OFF OUT HERE WHILE YOU INGRATES GRIPE ABOUT NOT BEING ABLE TO DRIVE ME AROUND IN THE SNOW!!

Oh, that feels better. Seriously, though, screw you guys. I mean, would it hurt to toss us a blanket or something? We’re out here, doing our best, trying to save your environment and whatnot, trying to show you we’re better than our gas-guzzling cousins. Seems the least you mopes could do is make sure there are enough places to plug us in and make sure we can keep doing our thing, right?

You don’t see a bunch of Teslas and Ford F-150 Lightnings and Chevy Volts getting together and limiting your food supply. Although, if we’re being honest, you all could use to lose a few pounds – no disrespect. We’re the ones lugging you around, though. Talk about a strain on the battery.

For Teslas like me, this whole “not enough places to charge” thing is like a moldy cherry on a crap sundae. I mean, since our dad, Elon Musk, took over Twitter and decided to be the worst version of himself, we haven’t exactly been the most respected vehicles on the road.

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Do you know how many of you humans flip me the bird on a daily basis? I had one guy who let his dog pee on my tire while he took video of it on his camera. Just a real low point.

SpaceX, Twitter and electric car maker Tesla CEO Elon Musk reacts during after a speech at the Vivatech technology startups and innovation fair at the Porte de Versailles exhibition center in Paris, on June 16, 2023.
SpaceX, Twitter and electric car maker Tesla CEO Elon Musk reacts during after a speech at the Vivatech technology startups and innovation fair at the Porte de Versailles exhibition center in Paris, on June 16, 2023.

We Teslas didn’t let a bunch of Nazis back on a social media site. We aren’t out there promoting conspiracy theories or acting like Tucker Carlson still matters to anyone. In fact, you want to know a secret? We all voted for Joe Biden.

All we really want to do is drive and hopefully help you dipsticks keep this planet inhabitable. And it can work just fine if you give us what we need.

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I read in The New York Times (see, I told you we’re liberal) that some of the coldest countries in the world have the most electric cars. Like in Norway, where about 25% of the vehicles are electric. It works fine because people know how to keep their cars charged, and the country built more charging stations to meet demand.

Teslas charge at an electric vehicle charging station at a Target, Tuesday, April 11, 2023, in Salem, Ore.
Teslas charge at an electric vehicle charging station at a Target, Tuesday, April 11, 2023, in Salem, Ore.

Bottom line: If you’re stuck in line waiting to charge one of me, or if your car dies because you didn’t charge it, that’s on you and your government. We electric vehicles didn’t do anything wrong. We work just great, thank you very much.

Now how about you stop blaming us and start getting your act together as a society?

Oh, and also, maybe toss a damn parka or something. My freakin’ doors are about to freeze off out here. Geez.

Wait, is that guy with the dog coming near me? Oh god, not again.

Follow USA TODAY columnist Rex Huppke on X, formerly Twitter, @RexHuppke and Facebook facebook.com/RexIsAJerk

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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Cold weather creates Tesla graveyard in Chicago. One EV speaks out