Making Friends in the EV World

If the dealership won't help you, hang out with enthusiasts

I’d like to say the entire automotive world is embracing EVs as one of the many solutions needed to reduce pollution and hopefully slow down climate change, but it’s not. Fortunately, in my experience, automotive journalists are generally on board with the future, though there are a few holdouts. But we’re lucky, we get to actually drive these vehicles. 

Three Porsche EVs parked side-by-side during Autopia 2099 in 2021

Autopia 2099

For everyone else, it can be a chore to experience the thrill of electric torque. Plus, if you're interested in an EV, but the folks around you are less inclined, well, that can be an issue. It's especially problematic when you visit a dealership, and the salesperson steers you away from the EV you were there to see to check out a gas-powered vehicle. Sometimes, it's because they don't know all that much about EVs, and it's tough to sell something you don't quite understand. Or worse, the salesperson has a car they want to get rid of, and you're just one in a long line of people they're trying to unload it upon. 

So what's a person to do if they want to know more about EVs but don't have anyone in their immediate circle to chat with about it? Well, there's the internet and car shows. 

Forums and Facebook

If you’re a Facebook user (and frankly, if you’re not, you’re probably better off at this point), there are a bunch of groups specifically geared (pun intended) towards EVs. There’s the Electric Autos group, which is sort of a catch-all of news, information, and discussion. It’s also where you can find information about EV meetups. 

People attending Autopia 2099 in 2021 to discuss cars and EVs

Autopia 2099

For the more hardcore EV fans, there's the Electric Car Conversion Project, an over 11,000-member strong group dedicated to transforming gas-powered vehicles into EVs. If you have your own project you want to start, or you're just interested in seeing what's happening in the electric restomod world, this is a great place to start.  

If you don't belong to either of the previous groups and are more fans of old-school forums not connected to gigantic tech companies, there's Electric Vehicles Forum, Spark EV (which is based out of Canada), and for the hardcore, DIY Electric Car for all your conversion conversations. 

Show and Tell

Forums and groups are nice, but it’s also helpful to talk to people in person. EV-centric car shows and events put you in touch with owners, builders, and automakers who are on the same page about electric vehicles. 

One that’s coming up in the San Francisco Bay Area on August 6 is Autotopia 2099. Nissan sponsors this show, so you’ll likely see the new Ariya electric SUV and the Leaf. There will also be Rivian, Porsche, and Acura vehicles, plus two-wheelers from Zero Motorcycles and LiveWire. A bunch of modified and restomod EVs will be there, too.

Parents and kids attending Autopia 2099 and walking past a Nissan Formula E

Autopia 2099

Coming to Seattle, New York, Miami, and Austin is the Electrify Expo. In addition to cars, there will be bikes, scooters, skateboards, and off-road vehicles, all powered by electrons, and you can actually demo some of them. They even have a kids zone, so you can get the little ones excited about the electric vehicle future, too.

Lastly, motorsports fans will appreciate the Holley High Voltage event at Sonoma Raceway in Northern California on July 9. Sure, you could pick up spectator tickets, or you can actually learn how to compete in autocross and drag racing at the event. 

So, whether you're just tip-toeing into the EV world or ready to take your own electric vehicle onto the track, there's a community out there for you. So make some new friends and learn how to be the person your old friends reach out to when the subject of electrification comes up.

Want to know more about EVs? We have a whole section dedicated to electric vehicles!

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