Are Electric Cars Being Over Hyped?

Neil Winton thinks so, concluding in his European Perspective column that their reality is less exciting.

Published: 29-Jun-2009

The electric car is about to conquer the world ... again.

Every time there is an oil supply crisis, the price of gasoline jumps, or warnings about carbon dioxide (CO2)-induced global warming hit new hysterical highs, the electric car solution isn't far behind.

It usually doesn't last long. Battery-powered cars in the past have been too expensive, too heavy, too ugly, would leave you stranded if you turn the air conditioning on, and just couldn't perform like a regular gasoline-powered automobile. They mostly still rely on energy from coal-fired power stations, so the CO2 source is merely moved, not eliminated.


TREV two-place electric car

Student-built vehicle can do 0-60 in 10 seconds with top speed of 75 mph. Photo courtesy of University of South Australia.

Lefteris' vehicle, built on the frame and body of a 1971 Porsche 914, is not a hobby car. It's been his daily transportation for getting around L.A for the last 12 months, racking up some 8,000 miles.

Automotive journalist John McElroy suggests GM revive the EV1 and with it, its credibility.


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