Re: No surprise
"So the real question for the promoters, is what really has changed since 1910?"
Well, we don't hand crank our cars anymore. We use an electric motor, powered by a battery.
There's also been a few advances in battery technology. Here's a paper on energy density increases in batteries:
Roughly a 10 fold increase in battery density over the last 100 years.
There are also plenty of EVs that have been in use the whole time, that somehow don't count, because they ween't for general road consumption. Used to have my milk delivered by one, and the forklifts at the first warehouse I worked in where all electric. Something about combustion engines suffocating you in an enclosed space or some such.
Framing this as EV vs combustion is foolish. We'll still need both, hybrid designs are going to more practical for many situations, and it's going to be a while before batteries match the energy density of a hydrocarbon. Commuting could be done with all EVs, but I wouldn't like to try farming or forestry without petrol.