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Courtesy of MSNBC
We can make it bigger, drive longer, not that much faster, we have the technology, kind of.

General Motors announced last week the revival of its electric car.  Their new design, the Volt, will mass market the electric car and use little to no gasoline. 

The Volt draws its power from a next generation battery, the E-flex system, which is recharged by a small onboard engine.  According to GM, when the battery is depleted, a 1L, three-cylinder turbocharged engine spins at a constant speed to create electricity and replenish the battery.  The motor will not provide forward propulsion and is only used to recharge the battery. The car is said to reach 40 miles on one charge and save close to 500 gallons of gasoline a year.

This new development sprouted from the failed EV1 project GM began in 1996 and abandoned in 2003.  They were heavily criticized for abandoning the experimental electrical vehicle program, but with the Volt, GM hopes to improve on their previous ideas of the EV1.

Some improvements on the new model include more passenger space, longer battery life, smaller battery size, and higher cruising speeds.

While most ultra-clean and efficient vehicles on the market today use hybrid gasoline-electric powertrains, the Volt will use E85 fuel which is a blend of 85% Ethanol and 15% gasoline.

Since the project is still in the concept stage, a final production version of the car is not projected for another 3 to 5 years.



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RE: GM Electric Concept Car
By RyanM on 1/7/2007 11:26:53 PM , Rating: 2
Tesla themselves have said that in 3 to 5 years, their battery pack will lose 30% of its charging capacity due to wear down.

That technology isn't suitable for GM, who isn't selling high-end luxury performance roadsters to people who can afford to throw them away after 5 years. GM is trying to make mass-marketable cars, something Tesla can't do yet because the technology doesn't exist yet, period.

Don't fault GM for the state of battery technology, that's just stupid.

And the Tesla motors car isn't in production yet. Those 200 orders have yet to be filled. All they've got is a working prototype.


RE: GM Electric Concept Car
By p3ngwin on 1/8/2007 7:20:09 AM , Rating: 2
don't fault GM for battery tech?

do you know that GM bought controlling shares in the company of the inventor of nickel metal hydride batteries?

GM controlled the company and FORBID by law that any car that wants to use NiMh batteries must run on at least 50% gas or be restricted to using "D cell" sized NiMh batteries.

so GM totally halted the development of battery car technology and then they killed off their own EV1 project once the California state legislation was killed too.


RE: GM Electric Concept Car
By masher2 (blog) on 1/8/2007 11:00:42 AM , Rating: 2
Why do people choose to believe such nonsense? Human nature, I suppose.


"If you look at the last five years, if you look at what major innovations have occurred in computing technology, every single one of them came from AMD. Not a single innovation came from Intel." -- AMD CEO Hector Ruiz in 2007











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