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PHOTO CAPTION: ZENN is low-speed electric car built in Canada, sold in USA.

Charging Up Public Interest in Electric Cars

For now, electric cars are limited to short trips or buyers with deep pockets.

Published: 21-Jun-2009

A persistent problem with making electric cars attractive to the general public has been how to build one with sufficient range to be marketable without using prohibitively heavy and expensive batteries. New battery technologies and electric "refuelling" options offer some hope of getting around this problem.

Lead acid batteries — the type used for years to power the starter, lights and accessories in gas-powered cars — are just too heavy to be suitable for electric cars designed for long-distance travel, says Michael Bergeron, vice-president of engineering at Zenn Motor Co., a Toronto maker of low-speed electric cars for city use.

its Low-Speed Vehicle (LSV), but Bergeron says lead-acid batteries

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