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Old 10-18-2012, 05:56 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Thoughts on balancing EV supply and demand.

Ev's aren't selling as well as many people anticipated, and now you have some EV's that sell slower than would be liked on dealer lots, as well as ramping production down in a at least one instance. How do we balance the supply and demand of EV's without automakers having to pay a penalty for trying to provide us cars of the future? This got me thinking.

I know how much everyone (me included) hates how the automakers build EV's around their combustion engine cousins instead of designing an EV specific platform car which would inherently be more aerodynamic and space efficient. You get an EV golf, a ford fusion EV, etc etc. That is because it cost less make that EV if the body is already 90% from a production combustion car.

Well why not just take this even further? Why not have Honda fit with a completely modular drivetrain? Where the ICE or EV components can exist within the same space constraints, and the rolling body can be fitted with an electric or gas engine based on customer demand on the same production line.

The Automaker and Dealer does not have to invest in building a 100% proprietary car with an expensive 24kwh battery, and electronic components. That EV does not have to sit on a lot for however long while the investment to build it is not returned until its sold. You could have rolling bodies that only receive EV components once sold, where in they bolt right into the bottom of the car.

If the EV sells slower than anticipated, just put in the combustion components.

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Old 10-18-2012, 06:54 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Isn't that kind of how they are designing the new cars already? the Honda Fit's engine bay apparently allows the current gas engine drive train to bolt in or the hybrid Insight drive train to bolt in (or so I read a while back).
Batteries in the Leaf are being built in to a gas tank size/shaped pack and the rest of the Leaf apparently shares the Vertis platform.
The vehicle platform is the tough part, the suspension, brakes, steering and so on, kind of like Dodge and VW did with their newer minivans, they share the same platform and bolt their own sheet metal on the outside.

Thing is, it doesn't seem to be a big deal to pause production, it's not a new idea that's come up with EV's, it's been standard practice for decades.
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Old 10-20-2012, 07:22 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Interesting to note hte 09 Fit and 10 Insight share a butt load of parts and many as well to the CRZ.
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Old 10-20-2012, 07:55 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I agree, but i guess i imagined something simpler. Like the shear compatibility cross platform to be able to upgrade your FIT to a FIT EV overnight or in the opposite direction. Not just being parts compliant across their different brands. But i guess that's not how the auto industry works. The GM Ultralight had an easily removable and swappable powertrain plus wheel assembly all in one unit. Selling a powertrain instead of a car would be nice. Conversions would -easier- on any car, which isn't to say we aren't at that point already. If only you could buy the guts of a Leaf from a dealership...

From what i've read the FIT EV beats the pants off of the Nissan Leaf.
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Old 10-20-2012, 08:19 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I think Chrysler tried something like this with the PT crusier and a few other cars of that time. I dont think it worked out for some reason.

I cant really get into all of the details for the auto world, but I can for example tell you about mortgages, related BS and banks.

A mortgage is typically serviced by a bank for an investor. Banks seldom own the mortgage, they just have a right to some of the proceeds from your payment, service fees and provide customer no service, etc.

Thats why banks dont seem to be helpful when you need to do a modification, etc as they dont have any control of it, its between you, the investor and the promisary note that you signed.

Many time from the investors standpoint, ie(Scruge McDuck) he rather you sell the home or go into foreclosure and get something who can pay for it vs negoitate a payment plan, fore give some of the debt, wave fees, etc.

Of course for the investor the mort is insured, so McDuck wins either way.

Now a refi is another story as the bank makes money from the opening of one of those accts, but its likely sold to an investor and the process repeats. Of course if you are late or have problems on your current mort, you credit wont allow a refi. As I use to tell folks when I sold credit cards, you cant borrow money when you need it, so get all the credit you can when you dont need it.

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