When Peter Petrol was about to enter his office on that fateful morning, everything was right with the world, well, as far as he was concerned. He was about to get his new company car that day after all. Would they finally upgrade him to the V6 model? Sam, the manager of the company’s vehicle fleet, was already waiting for him. “Good news”, he pronounced to Peter. ”The high-ups have finally done it.” Peter was confused. “Done what?” “They made the decision to switch our fleet to electric cars. Didn’t you get the memo?” Peter’s left eyelid started to twitch as his face grew paler. “They … did?” he croaked. “Yes! Isn’t that amazing? They’ve been going on and on about this whole sustainability thing for years now, and finally they’re doing something about it. You’re lucky, you’ll be the first to get one.”

Peter didn’t remember the rest of the conversation. “They couldn’t have…” he muttered under his breath on his way to the company’s car park. And yet, there it stood. No exhaust pipes, no front-intake grill. They seriously gave him an electric car. Him, an old-school car nut. As his anger started to grow, a plan began to hatch. “I’m going to show everyone here how ridiculous this is.”

He got into his new car and drove off. “Okay, first off, range. I have to drive across the whole country in this thing, how is this supposed to work with a range of…”, he looked at the display, “…oh, 400 miles, really?” Eh, he thought, nothing a little full throttle can’t solve. He was immediately thrown into his seat as a massive torque wave took the car beyond legal speeds. “Hmph, guess I need to take the car outside of the city.” It was no easy job, but after torturing his vehicle with constant full throttle and repeated near full stops, the display advised him to charge up the battery after only 280 miles. “Ha, I knew it!”, he exclaimed triumphantly. “Last I heard, charging stations are far and few between. Guess I’ll have to strand here to drive the point home.” The navigation display showed a charging station coming up in two miles. “Oh, come on!”

When he lined the car up with the charging station, his mood was down. He needed something to create an uproar. “Let’s see. Charging will take forever; I should record that.” He put in the charging plug as he readied his phone to take a photo. The display on the charging station lit up: “Quick charge, 15 minutes. Would you like to enjoy a coffee in our restaurant?” “Hmph, that’s a good idea actually,” he thought quietly. “Wait. Surely, I can cause a short by pulling on the cord. Kill the thing altogether. Brilliant!” He might as well have tried to lift the car with his bare hands. The plug just did not budge.

“Sir, you need to wait until charging is finished or stop the charging process via your vehicle’s app.” Peter only now noticed the gas station employee standing next to him. “Your model has one of those brilliant new actuators called secuCHARGE. That plug is not coming out unless you want it to.” “But I do want…” Peter did not finish the sentence. He knew when he had to admit defeat.

A few days later

“Dad, can I put the plug in?” It was only a few days later that Peter took his nine-year-old son David on a joyride. As opposed to Peter, David had been instantly excited about his father’s new electric car. After a lengthy trip, they were just pulling into a charging station. “Sure, Dave”, Peter answered, “just get the cable from the trunk and…” “Chill, dad, I know how to do it, probably better than you. It’s easy peasy.” Peter watched David as he got the cable and connected both ends to the charging station and the car’s charging socket. The procedure seemed to come completely natural to the young man. His wife Sabrina looked at him nervously. “Peter, do you really think it’s safe for him to handle that charging equipment?” Peter smiled at her. “Honey, that stuff is safe thanks to secuCHARGE, believe me, I tested it. Wanna go for a coffee?”