Electric car makers with no infrastructure plan can't be taken seriously, says analyst

Key Points
  • Any company making electric cars needs a solid plan for infrastructure.
  • It is not just a technical issue, but also involves politics and negotiation.

Tesla automobile plugged in and charging a Supercharger rapid battery charging station for the electric vehicle company Tesla Motors, in the Silicon Valley town of Mountain View, California.
Smith Collection | Gado | Getty Images

A crucial indicator of whether a company will succeed with electric cars is whether it has solid infrastructure, Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas told CNBC on Wednesday.

"If they don't have a well-defined plan on the charging structure, for example, we don't think they can be taken seriously," he said on "Power Lunch."

This is an aspect of electrification that needs more attention, Jonas said.

It is also one of the features that gives Tesla an advantage over competitors. The electric car maker has an expanding network of more than 1,000 branded "Supercharger" stations around the world.

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Jonas calls the charging infrastructure issue the "elephant in the room" for electric car adoption.

"We recently spoke to the senior management of an auto company who said the single biggest challenge of operating an electric fleet in the Northern California region was getting power, like literally electrons into the car," Jonas said.

He added that the problem was not just a technical one. It also involved politics, working with unions and utilities.

"I think Congress and the lawmakers and policymakers have a lot of work to do before we get swamped by Chinese capacity and lapped on technology over time," Jonas said.

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