The end of an era: Many large automakers including Ford, BMW, and Tesla have decided to take out AM radio from future cars.

AM radio has been in cars for over a century, and there are many people who still feel strongly about its benefits, but as electric vehicles begin to take over, many of the biggest automakers have decided to remove AM radio from future cars.

What was reasoning behind this decision?

The main reason for this change is that electric engines interfere with AM radio frequencies. However, lovers of AM radio are rather upset, and many are still trying to protest. According to Forbes, AM radio is "still listened by tens of millions" and "the elimination of AM radio has created a backlash from members of Congress, the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB), FEMA, AM station owners, political pundits, farmers and listeners." Even still, Automakers like BMW, Volkswagen, Mazda and Tesla, to name a few, don't seem phased by the backlash, and plan to continue moving forward with the shift. "And Ford, one of the nation’s top-three auto sellers, is taking a bigger step, eliminating AM from all of its vehicles, electric or gas-operated" (Washington Post).

What will be the effect of this change?

Much of today's younger generations have lost touch with AM radio, as there are many more advanced ways of accessing information and entertainment, even just from their cars. However, according to the Washington Post, "some station owners and advertisers contend that losing access to the car dashboard will indeed be a death blow to many of the nation’s 4,185 AM stations — the possible demise of a core element of the nation’s delivery system for news, political talk... , coverage of weather emergencies and foreign language programming." Senator Ed Markey (D-MA), a member of the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee says in response to the elimination of AM Radio that "despite innovations such as the smartphone and social media, AM/FM broadcast radio remains the most dependable, cost-free, and accessible communication mechanism for public officials to communicate with the public during times of emergency" and he fears this will cause major issues during serious events (Forbes).

What do you think about this decision?


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