People born during WW II have seen rapid response to changes in technology. For example, electric clothes dryers, television, transistors, Programmable Controllers, Mobile Phones, Robotics, CDs, PCs, Flash Drives, iPads, BioMed and a plethora of hardware and software have brought us to the frontier of possibilities. No sooner do we hear about the latest development than its use becomes universal.
One of the American traits that hasn’t changed since World War II is going to a gas station to fill the tank, changing the oil, filters, replacing emission control parts, spending ten percent of the cost of the car on maintenance every year and thinking to ourselves that something has got to change. Gas prices are out of control and get higher every month. Public transit is inconvenient. High speed rail is a vision of the future. Car pooling is just to inconvenient. We love our cars and the freedom they provide. What are we to do?
History tells us the development of the automobile with an internal combustion engine started in barns and sheds and quickly became mass produced. No need to revisit Henry Ford. Something similar has been happening in America with electric vehicles. Every city in the country has groups dedicated to the development of the EV (Electric Vehicle). Those who have had the experience of owning an electric vehicle would rather fight than give it up.
Ask a successful developer for some tips on building your own EV and you will hear, “It is cheaper and you will get a much better vehicle if you buy a new EV from a dealer, like the Nissan Leaf.” The developer will explain that the Leaf costs thirty four thousand but you get a Federal tax benefit of seven thousand dollars. You need a battery charger but the dealer pays the entire installation cost. Have you considered that people today think in terms of miles per dollar rather than miles per gallon? The weekly saving on gas is substantial as you go from $1.00 per five miles with an ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) vehicle to $1.00 per one hundred eighty miles with a totally electric vehicle.
On the News At Noon today, the commentator mentioned that the EV wasn’t selling in the King County area at this time. Just wait. Market experts expect electric vehicles to be the preferred method of transportation within four years. Almost overnight people will realize the simplicity and cost savings and move towards economy.
Is there a possibility of a new investment scheme with Electric Vehicles? Probably, according to technology investor James Billmaier in his book Jolt! The Impending Dominance of the Electric Car, writing of well know investor Warren Buffet: After careful research, Buffet decided he liked what he saw, and in late 2008 a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway paid $230 million for a 10 percent interest in BYD Auto (Build Your Dreams). Warren Buffet is the head of Berkshire Hathaway. BYD is a China based company heavily invested in the EV.
A total change in our mode of transportation, the Electric Vehicle, will arrive before the next El Nino with the same warm welcome.
Get tickets to see Revenge of the Electric Car , the sequel to Who Killed the Electric Car, opening at the Varsity Landmark theater on Nov 11.