Jens Kratholm, a 56-year-old Norwegian, owns a staggering seven Teslas. Six of them are Roadsters and one is a Model S.
He lives in Narvik, one of the world’s northernmost cities where the average annual temperature is three degrees, celsius. Remarkably, Kratholm, who works as an ophthalmologist, says he wasn’t even interested in cars until he read about the Roadster in a newspaper supplement. Previously, he owned a Volkswagen minivan for about a decade. Upon reading about the Tesla, he decided to order one without even seeing it. The nearest sales office was in Denmark at the time. “I read about the car and that was enough,” he said in an interview published by Tesla.
Tesla has an outsized presence in Norway— which is one of the richest nations per capita on the planet and also an extremely environmentally conscious place. The country has an incentive system so generous that it seems almost financially unsound to not buy an electric car. Electric vehicles are exempt from taxes that, on average, add about 50% to the cost of a vehicle. Moreover, electric vehicles get free parking, free charging, and can use the bus lanes. They are also exempt from road tolls and tunnel-use charges. Traffic in bus lanes and competition for charging stations has gotten intense.
The environment is what spurred Kratholm’s interest in Tesla, though he now also cites its remote-heating function and road handling (both important in Arctic conditions.) He has since bought Teslas for his wife and for his six adult kids to use when they visit.