I agree with Phoenix, I think that when you are trying to sell a car for$40,000 to $50,000 you will have always have a pretty strong head wind especially in the present economy. Having said that, the design does not seem to be something that many people lust after, if it looked more like the Fisker or the new Tesla sedan I think they would be selling more units. I suspect the average person doesn't care how it is powered and might even be a little afraid of it because it is advertised as different then your run of the mill Hybrid, in this case advertising as a Hybrid might have helped as it is better understood.
Same horsepower- check
same low end torque-check(much better than gas)
same acceleration- check (much better than gas)
other 3 items- no.
I've driven an EV1, Prius, Volt, all have low end torque and accel from 0 mph. They're fun to drive. 100HP electric is good for any driving except towing. As to your last point, the US has 1 car per 2 people, most families have at least 2 cars.
see where our electicity comes from:
Less than 20% comes from NG, although the latest NG "dual cycle" power plants can be high efficiency(up to 60%!) vs. coal at ~32%.
The big problem is the status of where our infastructure is TODAY, and the SCALE needed to convert most of the power grid to something better is going to take many DECADES to convert to something else (and to pay for it). The conversion probably will be first NG + nuke then eventually renewables (hopefully sooner rather than later). Until that change occurs, EV's don't make a lot of sense for the mass market. I say "cut out the middle man" and create a synthetic fuel from Coal (or NG) and run efficient cars on that...instead of waiting for the entire grid to be rebuilt (which will eventually need to happen).
CNG cars are clean...but CNG has its own convenience and safety issues. Singapore, for example, is converting from diesel to CNG for their fleet of public transportation & taxis.
Until the costs of buying/operating an electric vehicle decrease to the point where most people can afford to buy and use them as a "second local commuter" car, they will never gain widespread acceptance.
Since a large portion of U.S. power plants are now powered by natural gas, an electric car would still be less polluting than a CNG car. Additionally, the efficiency of a power plant is much greater than a car engine, even a car engine using natural gas.
Therefore, less CO2 emissions are produced for a given unit of power when using electricity produced by a power plant.
It would seem to me that GM needs to be in this for the long run. The current Volt is a 1.0 (previous EV were abandoned and momentum lost, so they are starting over). They should learn what they need to learn from this model and then plan on a retrofit in a couple of years. By then batteries will be better. I was seriously considering purchasing one, but it came out too late and I had to get a new vehicle at the time. We will learn from the Volt. GM was bailed out by American taxpayers. They need to make sure they realize this and continue the Volt program, even on a reduced scale to learn to make the next generation better. Targeting municipalities and other companies who can take advantage of centralized charging stations, economies of scale on support/maintenance, etc... should be a priority.
Funny, I posted a link to a website that does exactly what you are looking for, but it somehow has disappeared. It's a private website, but if I post it again, will it be removed because it would be deemed advertising? Or is this website biased?
NASA's Orion Flight Software Production Systems Manager Darrel G. Raines joins Planet Analog Editor Steve Taranovich and Embedded.com Editor Max Maxfield to talk about embedded flight software used in Orion Spacecraft, part of NASA's Mars mission. Live radio show and live chat. Get your questions ready.
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