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Who Killed the Electric Car? (documentary)

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posted on Apr, 28 2015 @ 06:05 PM
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Gemwolf wrote a thread about Audi making a thread on CO2 and water. Electric cars were mentioned and somebody else commented about how oil companies squash alternative energy/fuel for cars. Here's the thread: www.abovetopsecret.com...

The comments reminded me of the documentary that you'll find below. Rather then derail Gemwolf's thread by posting it I'll put the movie here. In the 1990's California had an idea for electric cars. An automaker (GM) made the UV1 but the company made it so that they could only be leased and not bought. When the leases ran out, the cars were carted off to a junk yard. Why? Maybe it was pressure from the oil companies. According to a former Gm employee, Gm abandoned the cars because they threatened the big players in the auto industry. So, who killed the electric car? Watch the movie and decide for yourself. Leave a comment and let me know what you think.

Here is more information about the movie: Who Killed the Electric Car?








posted on Apr, 28 2015 @ 06:13 PM
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edit on 28-4-2015 by bladerunner44 because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 28 2015 @ 06:39 PM
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In the 1990's the batteries would have been lead acid type, and probably weigh more than the car!

Downloading to watch



posted on Apr, 28 2015 @ 06:42 PM
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a reply to: Skid Mark

Technology or more accurately lack of it killed the EV1 (not UV1) I spent a lot of time in this vehicle I even had a charger in my garage. This was one sweet car. Superior ride handling and speed. It had a number of notable firsts. Fastest production car right off the the production line 220 MPH ( they put a governor on it), the lowest drag coefficient of any production car. First car with all composite and titanium construction. All that was great but the car was doomed from the start. Each car cost over $200K to produce. Even with mass production the cost would only come down by 50%. Now the reasons it was killed, besides the cost. The average driver could only get 15 miles on a charge. Once I learned how to drive it efficiently I was able to get 60 mile on a charge. It took a minimum of 4 hours to charge on a rapid charging station. I visited the GM production facility and spoke with their engineers and the battery technology people. They loved the car but knew that it would never meet mass market needs and would never be mass produced. It was a proof of concept car with some great technology that is just now showing up in production vehicles. Sadly battery technology was the achilles heel and that is still true today even with the Tesla, Volt, Bolt, ect. While progress has been made with lithium Ion technology these battery packs degrade to the point they will have to be replaced after several years. The cost approximates the replacement cost of an internal combustion engine. How would you like to replace your engine every 3 to 5 years. I also drove fuel cell vehicles, while they have their drawbacks they are the replacement for internal combustion engines but not for a few years. So you see there was no conspiracy and a few EV1s still exist in storage.


edit on 28-4-2015 by bladerunner44 because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 28 2015 @ 06:45 PM
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a reply to: bladerunner44

Thanks for the correction. I heard UV1 instead of EV1 for some reason.



posted on Apr, 28 2015 @ 06:50 PM
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originally posted by: VoidHawk
In the 1990's the batteries would have been lead acid type, and probably weigh more than the car!

Downloading to watch


You are correct they were lead acid, weighed over 2000 pounds and cost $3500 to replace every 3 years. They kept the weight down by using composites and titanium for the frame, seats and other load bearing and rigid parts.



posted on Apr, 28 2015 @ 06:56 PM
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a reply to: bladerunner44

That's a big battery. You'd need a jack or something just to change it.



posted on Apr, 28 2015 @ 06:59 PM
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originally posted by: bladerunner44

originally posted by: VoidHawk
In the 1990's the batteries would have been lead acid type, and probably weigh more than the car!

Downloading to watch


You are correct they were lead acid, weighed over 2000 pounds and cost $3500 to replace every 3 years. They kept the weight down by using composites and titanium for the frame, seats and other load bearing and rigid parts.

"weighed over 2000 pounds" Wow!
Those batteries give off hydrogen while charging, I wonder if any exploded!



posted on Apr, 28 2015 @ 07:01 PM
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a reply to: Skid Mark

It was a series of batteries linked together much like a golf cart. The battery racks were easily removable but did require a fork lift type device to get the old ones out and the new racks in. They sat a mid ship in the car which gave it a great center of gravity and excellent handling.



posted on Apr, 28 2015 @ 07:06 PM
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a reply to: VoidHawk

The gas by products during charging were a problem especially in enclosed place like my garage. They solved this by using a slow charger I had to charge for 8 hours. The outdoor rapid chargers (4 hours) were also limited for to this reason. We could have boosted the charge voltage but that could have caused gas concentrations at dangerous levels. I never heard of one exploding but there were a few that caught fire due to battery wiring issues.



posted on Apr, 28 2015 @ 11:54 PM
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Great documentary - thanks for the reminder... of how monopoly capitalism works.



posted on Apr, 29 2015 @ 01:10 AM
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a reply to: FyreByrd

Any time. I really wouldn't have remembered this documentary if it hadn't been for Gemwolf's thread.



posted on Apr, 29 2015 @ 02:56 AM
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Interesting movie - thanks for sharing.

I've got some mixed emotions about electric cars...

The motor manufacturers may very well still be trying to kill the electric car - or at least try to milk it at this stage.

There are more electric cars on the market than ever before (including the fact by the year 1900 more than a third of all cars were electric) and that doesn't even include hybrids.

There are currently about 20 electric cars on the market with about 9 to be released in the near future. (List of cars). Rumor has it that this will rise to about 40 vehicles by the end of the year.

The number 1 problem I have with these cars are obviously - the price. I'm sorry, but I am not willing to pay $ 24,000 (Mitsubishi i-MiEV is the cheapest) for a tiny little death-trap car that is awful to look at and has a range of 62 miles. For the same money I can pick up a second hand Audi A3 diesel; a car with a seemingly endless fuel range... I would however gladly give my two front teeth for the beautiful BMW i8, but who has $137,000 to spend on a car? Not to mention $1,150,000 for the McLaren P1... Let's be honest - if you have that kind of money, you don't care about fuel consumption - or anything to be frank.

It is a bit of a catch 22 after all... It all boils down to basic economics when it comes to the price of the cars: The higher the volumes sold, the cheaper it gets to produce something. I.e. not many electric cars are sold because they are pretty expensive. Electric cars are expensive because not many are sold... Perhaps if a car manufacturer is willing to take a hit and make an initial loss by selling their electric cars cheaper they may attract the crowds and sell enough to turn the profitability. But alas such a car manufacturer does not exist.

The second problem is obviously the very, very bad range of the electric cars available. I'm sorry, but I live in a pretty large city. I cannot take the gamble and hope my 50-80 mile "range" car lasts until I get back home when stuck in rush-hour traffic. And how is that going to work out when I have to drive down to the coast some 600+ miles away? And then spend several hours waiting for it to recharge before I can drive anywhere else?

Uhm. No.

At the end of the video they claimed that that their range is 400-500 kilometers (+/- 300 miles). How is it possible that some guy in his garage can create a car with better range than a car manufacturer can with millions to invest in R&D and the world's best engineers? Hmmm.

Finally we get to "culture". It's no secret that the average American loves a giant "gas-guzzler". The top 3 selling cars in America for 2014:
Ford F-Series (753,851 units)
Chevrolet Silverado (529,755 units)
Ram P/U (439,789 units)
Source

Why on earth would car manufacturers make smaller, more fuel economic cars if the biggest sellers are big, uneconomical cars?
It should be mentioned that the Toyota Prius barely made it on the list at number 20 - so at least it's something. Not that I would really count the Prius as an electric car. Still...

So does every country/region have its own culture. In South Africa, for instance we cannot rely on the electric network. The demand for electricity is higher than what can be supplied, so we constantly have rolling black-outs (or "load shedding") meaning we can be without electricity for 2-4 hours a day. In other words an electric car makes no sense in South Africa.

All that said, I must mention Tesla Motors. They are miles ahead of any car manufacturer when it comes to electric cars. While they are not cheap, they produce beautiful cars with excellent ranges and that can actually give any high performance (internal combustion driven) car a go for their money...



And even Mercedes proved that they can produce an excellent car (at a cost) if they put their minds to it - with the SLS AMG Coupe Electric drive. It's a kick-ass car (if you ignore the price) but apparently aren't bothered to take it any further.

There are quite a few developments in the pipeline. China is said to force Toyota to build electric cars. As I mentioned earlier, there may be up to 40 electric cars to choose from by 2016. And Tesla said it's making its patents "open source", meaning more guys in garages can build their own electric cars, and make them better.

So, it seems like there is some motion in the market of electric cars. Whether it's forward motion remains to be seen. "If you build it, they will come"? Even if car manufacturers produce proper electric cars at affordable prices, will culture change enough to accept them? If we take the Prius as measuring stick...? Well at least its not as bad as it used to be.

The electric car isn't dead. Yet. But if they didn't try to kill it all those decades ago, we may have been a lot further in advancement of electric motors...
edit on 29/4/2015 by Gemwolf because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 29 2015 @ 09:59 AM
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a reply to: Gemwolf

That's an expensive car. I wouldn't want to pay that much, either.
There are conversion kits for diesels that allow them to run off of vegetable oil. I saw a news segment about a guy that gets his fuel from fast food places. They give him the oil from their fryers and he filters it out and fills up. Of course, you'd need a heater under the car in winter time so the oil wouldn't congeal.
One thing people don't consider is the fact that pollution is still being produced just to make the electric cars and not to mention to charge them.



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