**this discussion is not for those that NEED a 500hp HUGE pickup capable of towing 10 tons and all that kind of stuff, this is for commuters, who only drive their butts to and from work**
So I've been thinking about what would make a good pure electric commuter vehicle for many of us in this country. I had read an article a few years back about a company that was making a small, more motorcycle-like three wheeled electric vehicle. All I remember is it was a trike config, aircraft style cockpit, about 100 mile range on a full charge, and it cost about $8000.
I thought about it, the configuration probably wouldn't be widely adopted, so I figured something more along the lines of a Miata or CRX style two seat coupe arrangement. Here's some thoughts on it:
Base model would cost around $10k. That would probably mean about a $200/mo note for about two years. After that, all you have to do is charge it. (More realistically it would probably be $15-20k, though. But a smart maker would use an existing chassis and suspension, probably use electric motors already in production and such... R&D wouldn't take much at all, really)
100-150 mile range on a full charge, possibly more (depending on battery size, weight, technology and capacity)
0-60 at about 7 seconds if not better. (possibly a high performance mode, and a distance mode. After all, electric motors generate a buttload of torque)
Maximum 8 hour charge from completely drained on 115v AC
Regenerative braking to assist with range
Easily replaceable motor and battery units
Battery life of at least 80,000 miles or 8 years. Replacement cost not more than $1000
Standard safety features, and crashworthiness of a standard two seat coupe
A sophisticated display constantly showing the battery status and estimated range
Built in storage for cables, so you can take a cable with you
And for longer range trips, a towable generation unit consisting of a small internal combustion engine that can run on unleaded, or propane, CNG or Hydrogen. (probably different engines for each?) The unit would be capable enough of providing enough current to maintain a highway cruising speed and charge the vehicle's onboard batteries while in motion, or while at rest. Interaction with the vehicle would be programmable and controllable by the driver. The unit would probably cost $2-5k. My idea is that if this type of EV were widely adopted, the towable unit would be rentable.
The vehicle would have a passive charging system and a simple towing rig. If the driver ever ran dry, the vehicle would charge itself while being towed. (Feature would be able to be disabled)
Possibly even have a passive charging system (solar) for those long days sitting in the parking lot in the hot sun while you're at work.
Electric cars are less fuel efficient then gas cars.
smart cars suck
They are so slow that its not funny.
IIRC their max speed is about 80km/h
80km/h would be a godsend in NYC traffic
But they also use a lot less gasoline, which is a desirable feature for many.
I'd rather American coal go into fueling my car than Saudi oil.
How much electricity does a typical one of these things take to fully charge anyway?
How about continuously charging it via Microwave Power Transmitters along every road?