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Obama continues to press for more fuel-efficient vehicles with new budget proposal

Despite the fact that consumers are not adopting electric vehicles and hybrids in force, the Obama administration continues to push ahead encouraging new vehicle research and broader availability for electric vehicles and hybrids. The federal government has handed out loans to help spur research and development to bring more fuel-efficient vehicles and other green technologies to market, and those loans have backfired on several occasions.

While Tesla Motors by all accounts seems to be thriving, producing upwards of 500 cars/week, some of its competitors haven’t been so lucky. Fisker was one of the recipients of a large government-backed loan and the company is expected to file bankruptcy soon.
President Obama has sent his 2014 budget proposal to Congress this week and while many programs and services are seeing their budgets cut, Obama is calling for a massive boost in money available for vehicle research. President Obama wants to increase the Energy Departments vehicle research budget by 75% to $575 million.

Tesla Model S assembly line [Image Source: Tesla Motors via Flickr]

Obama also wants to create a $2 billion trust fund to research ways to wean the country off foreign oil over the next 10 years.

"We'll continue our march toward energy independence," said Obama.

Obama is also calling for provisions in his budget to help jumpstart sagging electric vehicle sales. The president wants to increase the tax credit for electric vehicle purchases from $7,500 today to $10,000. With the current tax credit, the electric vehicle buyer takes the tax incentive as a discount on their yearly taxes. Obama's new plan would allow consumers to take the discount at the point of sale as a rebate.

The budget also wants to accelerate research and development for emerging battery technologies and new manufacturing processes to allow the automotive industry to produce cheaper electric vehicles with better range and faster charging capability.

Source: Detroit News

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RE: strange
By Spuke on 4/11/2013 12:08:24 PM , Rating: 2
Our economy is very dependent on oil right now and it's a dangerous situation if OPEC or Canada decides to jack up their prices because they foresee supply shortage.
Then nearly EVERYONE is in a dangerous position as nearly all countries import oil. We're on our way to becoming a net exporter. If there's supply issues from somewhere else, we could easily make up for it by using more of our own and since it's commodity, that's exactly what will happen. That might not keep prices from rising but as long as oil is a commodity, it doesn't matter where it comes from, the market will dictate prices.

RE: strange
By BRB29 on 4/11/13, Rating: 0
RE: strange
By Spuke on 4/11/2013 1:24:15 PM , Rating: 4
So we're the only one's that import oil then? THAT'S just wrong. About being ON OUR WAY to being a net exporter. Google is your friend. Old news.

RE: strange
By Mint on 4/12/2013 8:55:15 PM , Rating: 2
Those are some highly optimistic projections, and they are also assuming that the economy never recovers and that fuel efficiency keeps going up through vehicle electrification.

RE: strange
By Ringold on 4/11/2013 3:31:19 PM , Rating: 4
People thought that about natural gas, too.

And then, technology and oilmen savvy enough to skirt traditional restrictions came along, and...

People also said Israel was wasting its time searching for the same off its shores. It looked like it was, too, for years.

Then, suddenly, woops! There's the largest known untapped natural gas field on the planet.

You guys have been wrong on virtually everything since the 60s.

"Paying an extra $500 for a computer in this environment -- same piece of hardware -- paying $500 more to get a logo on it? I think that's a more challenging proposition for the average person than it used to be." -- Steve Ballmer

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