November, 2006

Traction Action

Plug In Partners

T his week's meeting of the Electric Drive Transportation Association in Washington was accompanied by some significant announcements.

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Is GM's Plug-in Hybrid for Real? What Say Big Enviro?

Plugs and Cars

Lots of ink on GM's plug-in hybrid announcement. With headlines like "GM Promises Plug-in Hybrid," Waggoner's statement in LA moves plug-in cars back into the public discussion of petroleum alternatives. Environmentalists" generally were credited with pressuring GM toward green technologies, and Roland Hwang of NRDC rightly questions whether GM's plans are mere "smoke and mirrors." While espousing the "electrification of the automobile," Waggoner made no firm committment.

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The Motor is Here!

Porsche 914 EV Conversion

The motor and controller from Electro Automotive (sent from Azure Dynamics) arrived on November 20th and are now sitting in my living room awaiting the remainder of the kit parts. Due to the high demand for kits resulting from the movie Who Killed the Electric Car , Electro Auto has been completely swamped. The kit is supposed to show up 10 weeks after Electro Auto got my $13,000 check back on October 23rd.

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Jumpstart Ford Startles Waggoner, Escorted Out

Plugs and Cars

Bloomberg News reports: "At the conclusion of Wagoner's speech today, two activists with the environmental group Jumpstart Ford, which lobbies automakers to boost fuel-efficiency, surprised the chief executive on stage by asking him to sign a pledge committing GM to become the most fuel-efficient automaker by 2010. Wagoner declined, saying ``I'll let my speech speak for me.'' The two men were escorted out of the hall." Technorati Profile

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GM's CEO Waggoner Announces Saturn Plug-in Hybrid; Bio-fuel Hummer

Plugs and Cars

LOS ANGELES (MarketWatch) -- General Motors Corp. (GM) GM) Chief Executive Rick Wagoner said Wednesday that the U.S. needs to reduce dependence on foreign energy and insisted the No. 1 auto maker is accelerating its efforts to meet the challenge by being the first to offer a plug-in hybrid and by expanding its production of biofuel vehicles.

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June '06 - The Film Opens, CARB Ducks, PHEV Debut in DC

Plugs and Cars

Who Killed the Electric Car Opens Across the Nation Who Killed the Electric Car?, director Chris Paine’s long-awaited documentary, begins a nationwide theatrical release on June 28 in Los Angeles and New York. In July it will open in every major American market. Plug In America and other Electric Auto Association chapters have been actively promoting the film with a guerilla marketing campaign aimed at raising awareness.

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July/August '06 - Activists Promote the Film, Ford Retreats on Hybrids

Plugs and Cars

Who Killed the Electric Car opens across America EAA chapters turn out for openings Summer 2006 has been all about “Who Killed the Electric Car?” Reviews of the movie by the score have been fueled by $75 per barrel oil and the fear of $4 per gallon gas. Chris Paine, the director, and Chelsea Sexton, ex-EV1 specialist and a central character in the film, tirelessly criss-crossed the country speaking to the press. Opening box office has been respectable, but certainly not gangbusters.

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More Trending

GM Series Plug-in Hybrid?

Plugs and Cars

In early November, an LA Times story heralding GM’s resurrection of the plug-in car was carried by newspapers worldwide. GM announced it will show some sort of plug-in car at the Detroit Auto Show in January. Speculation has focused on the possibility of a serial plug-in hybrid. GM made a prototype plug-in hybrid EV1 during the 90s. Rumors had already begun about GM’s electric intentions. In September, Chairman Lutz said that his worst decision was killing the EV1.

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California’s Proposition 87 - What went wrong?

Plugs and Cars

Proposition 87, the much ballyhooed California Initiative to levy a new oil extraction tax and use the revenue to support alternative fuels, went down to defeat in the recent election. One can’t overstate the impact of the $100 million oil-fueled campaign by opponents. Higher gas prices. More foreign oil.” The refrain still rings in my ears. Oil companies made a smart investment to keep $4 billion for themselves. But the Yes on 87 campaign squandered a great opportunity.

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RAVs to Keep Rolling in LA

Plugs and Cars

The efforts of LA EV activists to keep the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power’s fleet of RAV4 EVs on the road appears to have been a success. Nate Vandershaaf, who arrived at one meeting with a bank-certified offer to purchase all 74 RAVs for $1.85 million, caught the attention of the Board of Commissioners. As did a letter of support from Congresswoman Linda Sanchez.

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October '06 - CARB Takes Testimony on Electrics; LA Takes Action on RAV4 EVs

Plugs and Cars

Evidence for Electrics Piles Up at ZEVTech Plug In America and the Electric Auto Association were well represented and well received at the California Air Resources Board Zero Emission Vehicle Technical Review in Sacramento. This three day event was convened to present information to CARB staff as it considers options for the ZEV mandate in 2007. Presenters included automakers; battery, hydrogen and fuel cell companies; electric utilities; and energy and emissions analysts.

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GM to Launch?

Plug In Partners

GM Concept Car T here has been a rumor that General Motors might have a plug-in to show at the North American International Car Show in Detroit this coming January. Here is the first confirmation that it is no longer a rumor. GM likely to launch new plug-in hybrid Reuters Nov 10, 2006 DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors Corp. will likely unveil a prototype plug-in hybrid at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January, a local paper reported on Friday.

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