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Old 10-06-2008, 12:01 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Electric vehicles are taking off.

I have been seeing a really big interest in EV's lately.

Small dealerships are popping up.

All the major manufacterers have vehicles in the works.

All sorts of classes, lectures, and seminars are appearing.

Government is creating tax incentives.

Our gasoline culture is starting to change...

I have a YouTube account ( http://www.youtube.com/user/BenjaminNelson )where I have been posting videos on my work with electric vehicles and alternative transportation. I just checked it a few minutes ago and saw that some of my videos which always had tens of views, suddenly have hundreds of views. Most of the traffic seems to be coming from YouTube searches for "electric car"

I really feel that electric cars are going to hit the same way as cell phones or computers. They have been around a long time, but they will suddenly hit critical-mass and everyone will have them.

Right before cell phones went popular, they were very expensive and only had by people who really had good specific use for them. Seemingly overnight, everyone had them.

Electric vehicles are going to be the same thing, just you watch!

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Old 10-06-2008, 11:39 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I'm watchin' ! ! !
I'm watchin' ! ! !



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Old 10-07-2008, 12:16 AM   #3 (permalink)
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We'll I think that the whole concept of EV is being freely advertised by the large automakers in an off hand way. They complain that they are small and only get X amount of miles per charge..and what not.

But the funny thing is when they rant like that I look at my car (bought 2 years ago with 14000 miles on it---daily average of 19 miles--of that included a trip to LA and back for the wife and kids) and my small carriage house garage and start thinking...sounds good to me.
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Old 10-07-2008, 12:06 PM   #4 (permalink)
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There are some really smart people out there in small companies who know this is going to be big - and whether the big automakers get on board or not - they will forge ahead.

History has shown us that there are times when the "early adopters" of new technology / new opprotunities can take the world by storm. - Game systems (microsoft came in late and had to FIGHT to make the XBOX compete with Nintendy and Sony) - Cell phones (verision / sprint compared to the Wired Providers).

Heck even the 70's oil embargo and Japanese companies offering the small cars that the big 3 did not offer ( still trying to recover from that).

I hope the big 3 do not "dismiss" this to the point someone else steps in and provides the solution we need - and GM (once again) finds itsself playing catch up.

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Old 10-07-2008, 01:14 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Old 10-09-2008, 12:29 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dremd View Post
I can't wait!
Neither could I........ About 10 EVs (GEM, Xebra, Zenn, Commuta-car) are known EVs in this town, but I couldn't resist going right through the middle of town in an honest-to-gosh top-down EV convertible. I pretty much gave up convertibles in 1975. I just can not wait for a darn thing!
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Old 10-09-2008, 03:25 AM   #7 (permalink)
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This just in....Electric cars take America by storm........

Quote:
Originally Posted by bennelson View Post
Seemingly overnight, everyone had them.

Electric vehicles are going to be the same thing, just you watch!
I'm with you 1000% Ben.
Counting on it actually!
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Old 10-10-2008, 08:23 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I don't see Evs being ubiquitous for many years. Until batteries become inexpensive and meet mileage expectations of the general public you won't see widespread use outside of cities. There is also the problem of being able to recharge when travelling beyond the round trip "point of no return". There will need to be an increase in recharging infrastructure in order to make them less one-dimensional. This is why the Volt style hybrids are an important transition to a full EV.

The other factor is how long it takes to "turnover" the national vehicle fleet. The general period of time to do this is currently considered to be 20 years. This is the major difference vs cell phones and computers; those devices filled a void of ownership, while EVs have to REPLACE vehicles already in the fleet.

Factors affecting turnover:

Periods of economic downturn extend the turnover rate by a factor of 2 (every month of less than average vehicle sales slows the turnover rate by 2 months).

As EVs and hybrids become more available and desireable the value of ICE vehicles will drop, making trading in more difficult.

The current fleet is lasting far longer than previous fleets. The vehicles run longer with less unscheduled maintenance and body corrosion has been rendered a non-factor in fleet life.
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Old 10-10-2008, 09:51 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Plug-in hybrids meet all the concerns about range, and "point-of-no-return".

SuperTrooper's point about "fleet turnover" is absolutely correct.

I was talking to a GM guy last week at a green vehicles event, and he commented on that quite a bit.

My feeling is that Hybrids lead to plug-in hybrids. People will realize how great the plug-in part is and try to use the gas part less and less. This eventually leads to pure EV's or at least a lot of plug-in hybrids using the gas as a backup instead of the main power source.

It really does feel like times are changing.
EVs are being built, not because of a CARB mandate, but because of consumer demand and manufacterer competition.

GM is not going to be able to sue the American people into not making the Volt, the way it did with the EV1.

It's true that electronic technology like a cell phone "turns over" much faster than a big chunk of steel like a car does. However, how many people have a 2-year lease? How many people buy a new car every couple of years, and pass their old one down the line?

It's not going to take 20 years to make EVs mainstream.
The Prius has been in the US since 2000 (8 years ago) and it's gone from being a "tree-hugger" "what's that thing?" of a car to one of the most popular cars in this country.

Demand for these vehicles exceeds supply. I have never yet seen a sale on Prius' at a dealership.

All the manufacters make several different hybrids in various forms.

I just see how hybrids have effected our car culture and think that they have paved the way for plug-ins to start making it in a big way.

Also, remember how much GM has riding on the Volt. GM is a HUGE company loosing money out the wazoo right now. They need a big success real soon. (Or else another govenment bail-out! Haven't we had enough of these lately?)
With them throwing so much money and effort into that project, the other manufacturers will have to respond to the competition.

Not saying EVs are going to replace all gas cars. We all have cell phones, but land lines are still around. Television came out and didn't make radio extinct. The gas car came out, but we still have steam cars. Oh wait, we don't anymore!

So, some technologies complement, and some replace.

But I still think the EV's time has come. (Again)

And don't even get me started on how suburbs changed our transportation system!
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Old 10-10-2008, 11:31 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bennelson View Post
My feeling is that Hybrids lead to plug-in hybrids. People will realize how great the plug-in part is and try to use the gas part less and less. This eventually leads to pure EV's or at least a lot of plug-in hybrids using the gas as a backup instead of the main power source.

It's true that electronic technology like a cell phone "turns over" much faster than a big chunk of steel like a car does. However, how many people have a 2-year lease? How many people buy a new car every couple of years, and pass their old one down the line?

It's not going to take 20 years to make EVs mainstream.
The Prius has been in the US since 2000 (8 years ago) and it's gone from being a "tree-hugger" "what's that thing?" of a car to one of the most popular cars in this country.
Super trooper made great points, But I have to agree with alot of what Ben said. I research Solar, Wind, and Hybrids between 30-40 hours a week because my business partner and I are preparing to open an alternative energy store when we leave Iraq. I'm no expert on these things but I can tell you that there is so much popularity on these subjects right now that I don't see it taking 20 years to become mainstream. I started my research for alternative energy about 14 months ago, since then the "mainstream interest" has probably quadrupled. You guys see it I'm sure. Everywhere you look on tv someone is talking about some form of it. Like Ben said, times are a changing.

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