Gas prices are high right now, if you haven't noticed, and accompanying that extra pain at the pump are individuals and news organizations alike giving people tips on how to save fuel. Indeed, the Today Show came up with just a segment, embedded below, that's been airing on television lately doing just that. However, there's a small problem with it. The car they use to demonstrate these gasoline-saving tips doesn't burn any gasoline because it's an electric Ford Mustang Mach-E.
This wouldn't be egregious if the particular portion of the segment was focused on something like your driving style, which has a lot to do with how much energy you use whether you're burning fuel or discharging a battery. It didn't, however. The part of the clip with the Mach-E was focused on fuel saved while idling. NBC’s Senior Consumer Investigative Correspondent Vicky Nguyen explained that "If you're safely parked somewhere for more than ten seconds... consider turning your engine off. She then pressed the stop/start button on the Mach-E, which doesn't have an engine. "Idling can cost you up to half a gallon of gas per hour!"
Nguyen went on to note some relevant tips that will save you money whether or not the vehicle is powered by an internal combustion engine, like removing excess cargo from the vehicle. That said, it's unclear why an EV was selected to illustrate the idling point. I reached out to the Today Show in an attempt to clarify why a Mach-E was chosen to illustrate the point, but I've yet to hear back as of publishing.
Maybe the Today Show assumed people wouldn't notice the car was electric and the Mach-E was the most convenient vehicle on-hand to use. And to be fair, the point is still illustrated with reasonable effectiveness whether or not the car has an engine—the start/stop switch works the same way in EVs as it does in ICE vehicles. It's just something silly that probably should've been addressed before a segment was aired on national television. The result of the error is that a segment that would've otherwise held water loses its credibility.
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