Friday, August 18, 2006

More False Claims on Electric Vehicles

There are two outright falsehoods in a story from the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:
Gas was "only" $2 a gallon then. Now's it's $3. Who needs fuel efficiency, let alone fresh air?.....
'Who needs fresh air?' Ha! Well to those who just don't understand it, let them remain ignorant, but there will be no less pollution with electric cars, because most of the energy comes from coal-fired power plants, emitting stuff like SO2 and mercury, how does that give us less clean air; in fact, with all that stuff mandated for the cars, there is cleaner air coming from the cars. Unless they ramp up the nuclear, they are making a false claim. (and CO2 is not a pollutant, in the sense of 'fresh air').
90% demand.
No way. Forget it. People are in love with the ease of fill up. The only way they will get 90% demand is to put a 'quick-electric-fill-up' station on every corner. We are a long way from that. More like 10% The other factor is people love their SUVs (not me). Until they come up with the heavy SUVs that run on electric, well the demand will not be that high. Heavy, because folks don't want a light vehicle that tends to tip over on turns, or fairs badly when in a wreck with an 18 wheeler. You'll have to have separate roads for the 18 wheelers before you get your 90% demand.

There is some good news:
Smaller auto makers are largely behind the current revival. Silicon Valley start-up Tesla Motors Inc. last week began taking orders for its Tesla Roadster, a battery-powered electric sports car ($85,000 to about $110,000) that the company says can go up to approximately 135 miles per hour and run for 250 miles per charge. Similarly, Wrightspeed Inc. is developing a $100,000 electric sports car that it hopes will last 200 miles per charge and run up to about 120 mph. Another start-up, Phoenix Motorcars Inc., plans to begin selling two electric vehicles early next year that it says will be able to go up to 85 mph and last 120 miles per charge.
75 watt-hour/kilogram lithium ion polymer battery prototypes. Newer Li-poly cells provide up to 130 Wh/kg and last through thousands of charging cycles.


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