Ever since the introduction of the Tesla Roadster in 2008, compressed natural gas (CNG) has taken a back seat as an alternative fuel in the U.S. retail automotive market. Despite heavily financed advocacy campaigns, the technology has suffered from a lack of model availability, infrastructure, and public interest. Recent announcements from both (more…)
As I wrote last month, global biofuels production is nearing 2 million barrels per day – an impressive number that ranks biofuels ahead of Libya among oil producing nations – but most of this consists of conventional biofuels derived from corn starch and sugarcane. While these fuels may meet ground transportation needs, they lack the performance (more…)
Let me first preface this piece by saying Alaska may not, in fact, be the best place to own and operate an electric car. Confused? Let me explain. A new study (pdf) by the Union of Concerned Scientists explores the often asked but rarely answered questions surrounding the issue of whether some geographic regions may be better than others for electric cars in terms of their (more…)
There’s been plenty of bad news recently in the world electric vehicles, mostly related to start ups like Fisker and Azure. Adding to the mix, Deloitte has released a survey showing that battery electric vehicles (BEVs) are not very popular with Generation Y (ages 19-31).
The reasons appear to be multiple, including high (more…)
At this week’s Plug-In Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Conference I had a wonderful conversation with a senior player at Enterprise Holdings, the parent company of Enterprise Rent-A-Car. I began by validating him for coming to a show like this; to me it shows, at a minimum, a kind of progressive, forward-thinking approach to the business. (more…)
Electric vehicles in general are a great step in reducing emissions that cause global warming. The emissions from a gasoline-powered car are always greater than the emissions created to charge an electric vehicle. However, a new analysis by the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) suggests that the “greenness” of electric vehicles is not uniform across (more…)
A couple of times a year, I order up a free “press pass” and head out to a local conference on electric vehicles. Tonight, I’ll be driving south, staying with a friend in Los Angeles, then getting up early and continuing down to San Diego for the first day of the Plug-In Electric Vehicle Infrastructure USA 2012. Topics include: (more…)
Below is a wonderful video that explains the multiple drivetrains at work in the Chevy Volt. A couple of immediate impressions:
1) No wonder the price on this sucker is $41K, with all that going on. The bill of materials (costs of the individual components) must be enough to choke a horse. And the non-recurring engineering costs must (more…)
We know you’ve been waiting with bated breath, but the results are finally in. For the second time in less than 10 years, Mercedes-Benz won the award for producing the greenest car in the world. Surprised? We kinda were too.
When thinking about green cars, characteristics like (more…)