Automakers Unveil New Electric Vehicles Amid Sluggish Sales

In total, Reuters reported that roughly 400,000 electric vehicles have been sold in the U.S. to date — far short of the 1 million vehicles by 2015 goal set by the Obama administration.  Still, Detroit’s Big Three automakers each rolled out new plug-in electric or hybrid vehicles last week at the Detroit Auto Show. Analysts said that car companies are responding to government emissions mandates or steep financial incentives despite lower sales, while proponents of EV technology believe that the market will pick back up once oil prices recover. In the meantime, last year’s numbers also included some bright spots. Sales of luxury electric cars made by Tesla reportedly jumped by 26 percent in the U.S., while one report said that December’s EV sales were the highest monthly totals to date.  Obama himself touted the new hybrid and electric options during a stop in Detroit on Wednesday. “You’re not just making cars that people want today,” Obama told the audience at the UAW-GM Center for Human Resources. “You’re thinking about cars that people are going to want tomorrow.”