Romney disses EV’s, he must not care about energy independence!
In wednesday night’s presidential debate, Republican nominee Mitt Romney argued that President Obama’s grants and tax breaks to renewable energy companies equalled 50 years of the tax breaks to gas companies.
“Now, I like green energy as well, but that’s about 50 years’ worth of what oil and gas receives,” Romney said. “You put $90 billion — like 50 years’ worth of breaks — into solar and wind, to Solyndra and Fisker and Tesla and Ener1. I mean, I had a friend who said, you don’t just pick the winners and losers; you pick the losers.”
While Solyndra and Ener1 went bankrupt and Fisker is struggling financially, Tesla has shown signs of recovery. Romney then quipped that “One of my friends said, ‘You don’t pick the winners and losers. You pick the losers.’”
It’s a bit premature to call Tesla a loser – especially as the company is building cars it hopes will revolutionize transportation and helps us achieve what Romney said he too was working towards, energy independence.
Moreover, founder Elon Musk posted these three points in his blog last week:
1. In discussions with the DOE, Tesla has never asked for or even hinted at postponing repayment of the loan. We did suggest that holding nine months worth of principal payments in *advance* in a reserved account was a bit extreme and, moreover, was never part of our original loan agreement. The DOE agreed and reduced the advance payment reserve account to six months. At the risk of being repetitive: Tesla has always made its DOE payments on time and has never asked to delay repayment ever. I don't know how to state this more clearly.
2. The DOE's desire for advance payment of the overall loan stems from a concern that is the complete opposite of what many assume. The DOE believes Tesla will be highly successful and accumulate a large amount of cash, but that we may then choose not to pay off the loan any sooner than is currently required. Far from being worried about our survival, the DOE is highly bullish about our future and doesn't want us to delay early repayment of the loan if we have the cash on hand to do so.
The DOE has simply asked if we would be willing to repay the loan early if we have excess cash. The answer is unequivocally yes and I am happy to announce that we will be initiating an advance payment today to prefund the principal payment that is due in March 2013. The purpose of the DOE Advanced Technology Manufacturing Program was to serve as a catalyst for accelerating sustainable transport technology, which is in the best interests of all Americans and ultimately people throughout the world. In the case of Tesla, the result has been a resurgence in American manufacturing ability and the creation of over 3500 high quality jobs. Nonetheless, we have a duty at Tesla, having accepted this loan as a portion of our capital, to repay it at the earliest opportunity. We will do exactly that.
Tesla Motor’s future is yet to be determined but Tesla and Elon Musk have captured the imagination of many. The Model S is getting great reviews. So calling Tesla a loser is wrong. The nation has made the decision to move towards conservation, so Mitt Romney is either going to help facilitate this or get in the way. If 50 years of subsidies were invested into clean energies, then it seems to me that Romney should be praising the President’s commitment to energy independence not using this as a zinger. Techies all over should pay attention to his rhetoric; it could be a sign of things to come.
For folks trained on combustion cars, trying out an all-electric vehicle can feel like taking a very fast, road-ready toy for a spin. Press the ignition button, and the car turns on without the telltale rumble of an engine bursting into action. Step on the gas, and the high-torque jolt of speed is surprisingly sudden. The untold story of the electric car revolution: These things are simply fun to drive.
For the RAV4 EV, the secret sauce comes from Tesla Motors. The vehicle is actually a collaboration between Toyota and Tesla, for which Tesla is providing the electric drivetrain and battery packs (I was told they were basically the same innards that are featured in the much-hyped Tesla Model S). The RAV4 is, quite literally, a Tesla vehicle in a Toyota shell.
The auto blog Green Car Reports did the math and found that just four EVs are slated to be for sale in the U.S. in any real numbers by the end of 2012: ones from Nissan, Mitsubishi, Coda, and the aforementioned Tesla.
The blog characterizes others as so-called “compliance cars.” This basically means that they’re produced, at least in part, so their manufacturer can comply with California laws requiring large carmakers to produce at least some zero-emission vehicles.
Now, there are two ways of looking at this peculiarity. Cynics might say manufacturers are just making compliance cars because they have to, with little intention of blowing out the tech into mainstream products…read the entire story
Zero Motorcycles last week announced its 2013 model line which features an average power increase of 99 percent and the world’s longest-range production electric motorcycle: the Zero S, capable of 137 miles in the city. To attain such leaps in performance, Zero designed a revolutionary new Z-Force™ motor that is incredibly powerful while also highly efficient, passively air-cooled and compact. Integrated into every 2013 motorcycle, the motor operates using a new higher voltage Z-Force power pack. Providing riders the option to charge faster than ever, each Zero can now be charged to 95 percent in an hour or less using CHAdeMO certified charge stations by way of an optional accessory. Perhaps most exciting, Zero plans to begin initial deliveries of its complete 2013 model line to North America in January 2013.
Nearly all elements of the entire line have been reworked, from highly innovative mobile phone integration to eye-catching styling. Using Bluetooth, riders can now sync their iPhone or Android mobile phones to see detailed motorcycle information and even adjust the performance characteristics of the motorcycle. Riders will appreciate the storage in the ”tank” area and comfortable two-tier seats. To accommodate the new look and powertrain, Zero redesigned the frames for every model with an emphasis on improving rider ergonomics and expanding compatibility with aftermarket accessories.
In 2013, Zero also introduces the Zero FX, a “do anything” and “ride anywhere” urban rebel motorcycle. It is the fastest accelerating motorcycle in the company's lineup with 70 ft-lbs of torque, 44 hp and a low weight of only 275 lbs. The Zero FX, as well as the Zero XU and Zero MX, features a cool modular quick-swap power pack technology. Riders can now use one or two battery modules and can upgrade any of the previously mentioned models from 2.8 kWh to 5.7 kWh in seconds. The Zero MX is capable of comfortably launching off significantly larger jumps at the motocross track.
Zero’s newly introduced Z-Force motor along with it’s powertrain is completely air-cooled, thanks to it’s efficient design. With instant torque, a nearly silent belt-driven system and no shifting, riders will find it easier to enjoy the ride. Zero proudly claims that for the owner, there is no routine powertrain maintenance and the “fuel” cost is only a penny a mile. California with it’s year round good climate and $6 per gallon gas should go think about making the Zero the State symbol.
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