The Chevrolet Volt has some high standards to live up to: In conversations with Wired News at this week's North American International Auto Show (aka the Detroit auto show), General Motors Vice Chairman Bob Lutz said that a successful launch of Chevy's plug-in hybrid could have "the same sort of symbolism" for GM and the U.S. auto industry as the Apollo missions and the moon landings did for NASA and American scientific endeavors. (He also talks price, batteries, and looks.)
Tesla Motors helped bring the concept of the all-electric vehicle back from the dead, but it appears they also have gas on their minds.
Speaking at the ThinkGreen conference in San Francisco, vice president of finance Mike Taylor told an audience that the GM Volt is "a really good way" of extending the range on electric sedans in a cost-effective way.
The Volt, planned to come out around 2010, contains a gas engine and an electric motor. The car runs on the electric motor and the gas engine recharges the battery. These sorts of vehicles, called range-extended electric … Read more
The Los Angeles Auto Show wraps up this weekend. I drove down to the Los Angeles Convention Center last week to check out the new BMW M3--which I hope to buy next year--and get a look at all the other new cars debuting there.
There were two clear trends at the show: higher performance and increased environmental sensitivity. The best new vehicles show improvements in both areas.
General Motors may lease the battery packs for its Chevy Volt electric car to make it more affordable, according to a news report.
GM's electric car will take lithium-ion batteries which are known to be expensive and have a limited lifespan compared with the life of a car.
Bob Lutz, GM's global product chief, has said that the company hopes to make the car available in the $30,000 price range.
While GM has several leading battery technology developers and manufacturers onboard in its effort to build an affordable, long-range rechargeable battery for the car, critics have pointed … Read more
General Motors announced Thursday that it will begin testing for its electric rechargeable car, the Chevy Volt, in spring 2008.
The lithium-ion battery packs planned for the Chevy Volt should be ready as soon as October 2006, Bob Lutz, GM's global product chief, told Reuters.
The company also announced Monday it has signed another contract with battery manufacturer A123Systems to help it develop the lithium-ion battery cells for its E-Flex electric drive train.
GM already … Read more
Hydrogen is lightweight and efficient as a fuel. When it burns, you get water as the exhaust, and the fuel cell technology that burns the gas is well developed. The major hang-up has been how to produce hydrogen without needing lots of fossil-derived energy.
Apparently, the way to cheap hydrogen is through aluminum. Purdue researchers earlier this year announced they'd found a way to use aluminum to get hydrogen from water. Today a Chinese ceramicist who did graduate work in Portugal says there's an even simpler way to derive hydrogen. This process uses powdered aluminum at room temperature, … Read more
When GM unveiled the Chevy Volt at this year's Detroit auto show, it admitted that the electric-powered required a technological breakthrough in battery development for the concept to become a reality. Skeptics suggested that the unveiling was little more than pie in the sky or PR hoopla intended to paint the General in more a more non-electric-car-killing light.
This week, however, GM has gone some way to dispelling that skepticism by awarding contracts to two firms with credentials in the lithium ion battery and automotive industries to come up with a solution to the Volt's power requirements. Compact … Read more
Plug-in electric cars have gotten a lot of column inches recently, thanks to the hoopla surrounding the unveiling of Chevy's Volt concept at this year's Detroit auto show. This week, the dream of AC-connected autos took a step closer to becoming reality as utility giant PG&E unveiled a Vehicle to Grid (V2G) technology allowing two-way transfer of electricity between electric vehicles and the grid. The technology, demonstrated at the Silicon Valley Leadership Group Alternative Energy Solutions Summit, would effectively turn idle electric cars into a source of electricity for homes and businesses, taking load demand off … Read more