Car rental company Hertz is experiencing continued fallout from its electric vehicle (EV) embrace. 

After announcing the sell-off of 20,000 EVs (a third of its entire EV fleet) in its January 2024 Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filing, Hertz CEO Stephen Scherr exited the company last week after just two years on the job. 

“Hertz doubled down on EVs in the months after Scherr took over, placing big orders with Polestar, the electric-car maker owned by China’s Geely and Sweden’s Volvo Car, and GM,” Fortune Magazine explained. “Hertz announced its EV sell-down plans in January, citing lackluster demand, costly depreciation and expensive repairs. The Estero, Florida-based company took a $245 million charge and reported its biggest quarterly loss since the pandemic.”

IWF Senior Policy Analyst Carrie Sheffield cataloged her own Hertz EV rental horror story at Fox News, writing, “Women, in particular, should know EVs’ risks, since we are physically more vulnerable than men. Sure, gas-powered cars have fuel and battery problems, but Consumer Reports recently reported electric vehicles suffer nearly 80% more problems than gas-powered cars, while plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) bring 150% more problems.”

Hertz isn’t the only company that lost big on its EV bet. Investors and car makers bought into the so-called euphoria too. 

In January, there was a major sell-off of EV stock, with some stocks depreciating as high as 90% from their peak. Overall, the investment journal Barron’s reports the EV bubble—or more accurately, the EV mirage—has cost investors $1.5 trillion. Ouch

CNBC heralded this EV fallout with the bold declaration: “EV euphoria is dead.”

“The buzz around electric vehicles is wearing off,” the CNBC report detailed, “Now the hype is dwindling, and companies are again cheering consumer choice.”

Today, the Biden administration announced its long-awaited, controversial final tailpipe emissions rule to force EV adoption. While the rule relaxes enforcement for some car models until 2030 and promises to reduce 7 billion tons in carbon emissions, the rule would still mandate two-thirds of new cars be electric by 2032. Due to the regulation’s demands, car makers will need to comply and will ultimately stop selling gas-powered vehicles—therefore, restricting consumer choice. 

Our Center for Energy and Conservation will continue to monitor all updates relating to EV mandates and trends. Read our statement on the EPA’s finalized tailpipe emissions rule and learn more about Hertz’s EV mishaps HERE.