Tesla will use some of the millions of dollars lent by the US government to develop an electric minivan, a company executive has hinted. The Californian firm secured itself a $465m (£285m/€333m) low interest loan from the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Program (ATVMP) back in June. ATVMP is available to car firms and …
Any earmarked for new power stations?
The dirty side to all these clean eVehicles that everyone wants parked in their driveways is that they need to be provided with some juice from those filthy power stations that nobody wants in their back yards.
So what's new?
I can remember a time when the larger part of urban Britain's milk was delivered by such a minivan. I'd surmise that the eventual replacement of all these thousands of vehicles was done on economic grounds. So how long before the false economics driving the introduction of electric vehicles fails and we're back to real economics?
Makes sense to me
There are fleets worth of vans that don't do many miles a day around town or even in the country, firms running them probably already have (or could easily get) the infrastructure to support a fleet of electric vehicles. These fleets (and maybe individuals with similar workloads) are perfect targets for a low-pollution low-noise reasonable-efficiency electric delivery van, as technology demonstrators if nothing else. Hell it's only thirty years or so since Lucas Electric Vehicles produced a Bedford CF Electric, so the technology and the market must be nearly ready now.
Which is why it's so ridiculous that LDV's Electric Maxus appears to have fallen by the wayside earlier this year when Lord "Two Resignations" Mandelson of Ill Repute refused to cough up £5M for a loan to keep LDV out of administration. Mandy's refusal wasn't a surprise though, as (a) LDV are in Birmingham not the City of London (b) Gordon the Blue Labour Prime Minister's mates in the City had already emptied Gordon's piggy banks, and our piggy banks, and our children's piggy banks.
First they buy GM, making it all the more difficult for truely innovative companies like Tesla. Then they need to even the playing field so they give Tesla cheap loans. Why don't we just give up and embrace the Chinese model right now.
For god sake, let the market decide. The government just needs to regulate the market, not intervene in it. Gigantic FAIL.
Speaking of GM
Just today (Sept. 30) a deal fell through on the purchase of GM's Saturn unit. Seems cheaper to buy one of those production lines and convert it than to build one from scratch. If only capitalism actually worked for creative reuses. They could maybe even build upon one of their existing platforms. I mean . . . if you're throwing $365 million around . . .
RE: New Power Stations
California already gets water and power from out-of-state(Tesla is in CA). They are never concerned with petty details like how the things will get charged up. What is important is for the folks in San Francisco and San Jose to have electric cars to drive.
First they buy GM,
Isn't Chrysler on it's 2nd US Govt bailout as well?
You forget that these companies can play the "But think of the welfare costs taxpayers will have to pay to support all those old, out of work, untrainable blue collar types. Your constituents will punish you for this."
The UK had a similar situation. The phrase which Margaret Thatcher popularised was
"No lame ducks."
This was done with the Govt owned British Steel Corp.
It was slimmed down and became profitable and is now Chorus. However when they bid for part of the steel to rebuild the area around the Twin Towers ol' W slapped a 100% surcharge on foreign steel. The US like a free market, as long as it gets the business.
However the UK still has one sector where the players can still hold the govt to ransom with the mass unemployment card.
Its the defense industry. Although pound for pound these are some of the most expensive jobs on the planet.
Have we the wrong end of the stick here?
ISTR that the yank term "minivan" refers to what we call an MPV. i.e. something more like a Ford Galaxy than a Transit.
@VoodooTrucker : US Innovation
"For god sake, let the market decide"
No Government wants 100,000 people laid off all at once. The German government have also intervened as would the French (they have the benefit that French people buy French cars no matter how bad they are).
Telsa might just be able to lead the world here - they are starting off with a clean sheet unlike Toyota, Honda, Ford et. al. The down side is, unless there is a lot of manufacturing capacity, these cars will be sold at a very high price to rich Californians.
Milk floats were introduced because in there day they were cheap, more reliable and much more quiet (at 3:30-7am!) than combustion engined equivalents. They died out 'cos of economics. Vans improved and we consumers changed our milk purchasing habits.
The electricity delivery infrastructure, in the main (sic), exists but may need uprating unless habits and consumption don't change - so there may be a cost..... (as yet unaccounted for?) in electric domestic vehicles and light vans.
Electric power generation currently relies on, in the main, fossil fuel. (Yes, the French have Nuclear power stations but they also have Renaults and Citroens!) Change to solar furnace, Tidal, Wave and other effective renewable power and then come back to me about electric vehicle economies and regulating market forces...
Also, and now we're back to Milk floats, find me some battery technologies that wont rape the environment of the first and 3rd world in there manufacture.
H2 generated from renewables and distributed like LPG might work but that will also cost a lot.
What was the joke about number of psychologists to change a light bulb.... None, the light bulb has to want to change. A bit like humans then?
@ Maurice Shakeshaft
Hell yeah keep your mits off my Li ion for my laptops, ipods, mobile phones.
Born and raised in Detroit
Hi, Tesla should move to Detroit, and help the people there. There are plenty of car workers available too. Yes milk delivery has changed, we used to to get fresh milk delivered and every house had a milk chute. Now we pay more and go the market, go figure....