The new Cadillac ELR will combine electric car driving with elegant styling and a luxury interior. GM is moving ahead with the dramatic luxury coupe, shown two years ago as the Cadillac Converj Concept. The Cadillac ELR will use the electric drive system of the popular Chevrolet Volt. Cadillac drivers will now be able to drive 30 to 40 miles on an electric charge from home, work, or charge stations, then go hundreds of added miles when the gasoline engine is engaged.
Jackson Browne told me that he has only used 8 gallons of gasoline for the 2,000 miles that he has driven his Chevrolet Volt. Jackson is famous as a signer, songwriter, and inductee in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. When it comes to oil, coal, and nuclear, Jackson knows that we are “Running on Empty.” For over 25 years, he has lived off-grid using solar power and wind energy. Now he rides on sunlight, charging his Chevy Volt with renewable energy. Only on a few long trips, has he needed a little gasoline.
It takes a lot of electricity to run Dow Jones, one of the world’s largest publishers and information providers. Dow Jones is now generating 3.6 MW of its own electricity with Solaire Generation Solar Parking Canopies. The Arizona VA Hospital is installing 2.9 MW of solar panels from Kyocera and REC Group covering several parking lots. Live from Intersolar Conference.
Ford is ready to give U.S. buyers of crossover SUVs record fuel-economy. Active families want more cargo flexibility and space. With high gas prices they also want over 40 MPG. The new 5-seat C-MAX Hybrid delivers. In 2012 it will compete head-to-head with the new larger Prius V crossover SUV. The Ford C-MAX Energi will challenge the Chevrolet Volt by supporting 5 passengers to the Volt’s 4 and by offering much more cargo flexibility.
Google has deployed more than 70 charging stations at its worldwide headquarters in Mountain View, CA. Over 100 employees who own electric cars use the charging stations, as well as the company’s growing car sharing program for Googlers (GFleet), which includes Chevrolet Volts, Nissan LEAFs and Toyota Prius Plug-in Hybrids. With plans for 250 more charging stations on its campus, and a goal to make 5 percent of its campus parking EV-ready, Google’s installation is the largest workplace charging installation for electric vehicles in the country.
The new Mitsubishi I, bigger and with more zip for the U.S. market, can now be reserved at a low price of $29,195 that will challenge the Nissan LEAF, Ford Focus Electric, and Honda Fit Electric. Reservations can now be made, with different models and options now priced. My 15-mile test drive of the Mitsubishi demonstrated that it can handle freeways, steep roads, and tight parking spots.
A total of 3.2 million plug-in electric vehicles will be sold worldwide by 2015is forecasted by Pike Research. Annual EV sales will cross the 1 million mark for the first time during the same year. More than 4.7 million EV charge points will be installed globally by 2015. Pike Research forecasts that in the United States, the top cities for EV adoption between 2011 and 2017 will be New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, San Diego, and Chicago
By Tom Bartley (6/1/11). An analysis by Megawatt Storage Farms set the 2020 statewide need at 4,000 Megawatts of energy storage. This 4 GW didn’t take into account the projected extra 10% grid energy load caused by forecasted charging of electric cars. To put this in perspective, 4,000 MW is almost the SDG&E peak demand [...]
A General Motors executive recently told a small group that GM is working on 32 electric car derivatives all based on Voltec, the Chevrolet Volt’s electric drive system. Voltec is GM’s architecture and roadmap for a number of exciting vehicles future vehicles with electric drive systems. Volt demand is strong. In 2012, global production capacity is expected to be 60,000 vehicles with an estimated 45,000 to be delivered in the United States.
I silently guided my Nissan LEAF into space 14 reserved for electric cars at the Oakland International Airport (OAK). Already plugged in to other spaces were Chevrolet Volts, Tesla Roadsters, a converted Prius plug-in hybrid, and a Mitsubishi i-MiEV. Supporting the 15 preferred parking spaces were eight Coulomb ChargePoint Dual Level 2/1 Charging Stations.
By Tom Bartley. The Advanced Clean Transportation (ACT) EXPO, May 4-6, 2011, at the Long Beach Convention Center had 42 on display and 25 ride-n-drive alternative fuel vehicles running on natural gas, propane, biofuels, hydrogen, and electricity. This is the largest conference of its type in the US this year, taking over from the dropped [...]
By Tom Bartley (5/12/11). electric cars were meant to be charged at home during the off peak night time hours. Depending on a public charging station is going to be a real crap shoot. As the number of plugin cars increase, the EV drivers could grow to hate each other because of competition for a [...]
San Diego Gas and Electric may be the world’s first utility to smart charge 1,000 electric cars through a smart grid. This electric utility, which services 3.4 million people, has been installing an extensive electric vehicle charging infrastructure, expanding its electricity generation to 33 percent renewable, and implementing a smart grid. In many ways, the three initiatives support each other. Over 200 Nissan LEAFs and Chevrolet Volts are charging by using the utilities smart grid.
Tesla recent quarterly financial results show progress on several fronts. Over 1,650 customers are now driving the Tesla Roadster, the impressive electric car with a 240-mile range per charge. Customers have driven these 100-percent electric cars more than 11 million miles. The Model S Sedan is on track for completion and customer deliveries mid-2012. A much bigger market is expected for this premium sedan that starts at $57,400 and has an optional battery pack with that gives the car a 300-mile range. When Tesla begins delivery of the Model S, over 100,000 electric car customers will be driving their Nissan LEAF, Chevrolet Volt, Ford Focus Electric and other electric sedan competitors.
In this test drive of the new Toyota RAV4 EV, this electric SUV beat a V8 gasoline pickup going up hill. Combine a mature Toyota RAV4 chassis and interior with a maturing Tesla electric drive and you have a premium electric vehicle in months not years. 31 of these prototype all-electric SUVs are now on the road and demonstrating 80 to 120 mile electric range.