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Volt/Leaf Sales; Sierra's GoElectric; Obama on Energy; SIRUSXM; PHEV Bus

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  • Felix Kramer
    As PHEVs and EVS continue to advance, we tell you where to find sales figures for Volts and Leafs; we happily announce the Sierra Club s new plug-in campaign;
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 6, 2011
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      As PHEVs and EVS continue to advance, we tell you
      where to find sales figures for Volts and Leafs;
      we happily announce the Sierra Club's new plug-in
      campaign; and we point to a place to read Pres.
      Obama's speech as delivered and compare it to the
      prepared text. You'll also find news from Fisker,
      SiriusXM pricing, and an unusual PHEV bus. And --
      finally -- one of CalCars' wonderful historic converted Priuses is for sale.

      (Shortly after it goes out on email, this posting
      will also be viewable at
      http://www.calcars.org/news-archive.html -- there
      you can add CalCars-News to your RSS feed.)

      HOW ARE VOLT AND LEAF SELLING? We see lots of
      misinformation about sales volumes for the Chevy
      Volt (and the Leaf). At MyNissanLeaf you can find
      a tally broken down into US-Japan-Europe-Rest of
      . The cumulative totals through April 1 are 2,144
      Volt and 3,782 Leaf. To see how desperate some
      are for the plug-ins they've ordered, one owner
      flew a helicopter over the Port of Los Angeles to
      photograph Leafs on the dock.

      Half of the 595 Volt dealers now have demos. For
      more insight into Volt sales, see
      which explains that the 10,000 Volts to be sold
      in 2011 don't include 5,000 for international
      customers, and you need to add to the 45,000
      planned for 2012 another 15,000 internationally,
      including Vauxhall and Opel Amperas.

      seven years in which we've chronicled the Sierra
      Club's position as "missing in action," first
      questioning the environmental benefits of
      electric miles, then placing big bets on hybrids
      and natural gas, we now enthusiastically welcome
      its "GoElectric" campaign. The Club's policies
      are determined by its 1.3 million members
      organized in local groups and regional chapters.
      Many thanks to new Exec. Dir. Michael Brune
      (formerly at Rainforest Action Network) and the
      internal advocacy efforts of chapters in
      California and elsewhere. All helped evolve the
      views of this 119-year-old organization. See
      for an excellent fact sheet and
      for one of the best "Myths vs. Reality"
      presentations we've seen. See an interview with
      the campaign's new director, Gina Coplon-Newfield

      With National Resources Defense Council and World
      Wildlife Fund having jumped in some time ago,
      that leaves mainly the Environmental Defense Fund
      http://www.edf.org/page.cfm?tagID=57179 and Union
      of Concerned Scientists
      http://www.ucsusa.org/clean_vehicles/ with
      "ecumenical, we don't choose among hybrids,
      hydrogen, biofuels" perspectives. They lack
      strong promotional efforts to their members or
      significant participation in naitonal plug-in
      advocacy efforts. And, one more time, we point at
      the UCS Hybrid Center to the INEXCUSABLE slide
      show that since February 2006 has scientist Bill
      Nye (who knows better) saying, "You might think
      that since my hybrid has electric motors, I go
      home and plug it in. Well, thatís not how this
      one works. Itís a gas-powered car. I get the high
      performance, low emissions, and great mileage
      without getting electric energy from anywhere but
      the carís own built-in electrical system. Thatís
      what hybrids can do when automakers build, and
      consumers choose, hybrids that help most at the
      pump and with the planet..."
      We encourage members of these groups to contact their leaders!

      ENERGY: Those disappointed by this important
      speech last week at Georgetown University may
      take some comfort from the fact that most reports
      were based on the prepared text. At
      ClimateProgress.org, you can compare that version
      with the one actually delivered at
      . Joe Romm comments, "Letís make what I think is
      a fairly reasonable assumption that the
      overwhelming majority of the changes in the
      speech were by Obama himself. Here then is the
      speech with additions in boldface and the few
      deletions in strike through, plus some running
      commentary." He notes a somewhat greater emphasis
      on climate change and electric vehicles -- while
      joining many others in saying that the President
      lost another opportunity to educate the public
      about the urgency of these issues and who and why
      some are obstructing critically-needed measures.

      has begun building the Karma at a small partner
      facility in Sweden, for delivery later in 2011.
      (It was announced in 2007 and was originally
      expected to ship in volume in late 2009.) The
      sleek $95,000 luxury four-passenger vehicle will
      have an estimated 50-mile EV range. Supported by
      a $528M federal loan and several investment
      rounds, this vehicle will be followed by a
      lower-priced sedan and SUV to be built in a closed GM plant in Delaware.

      PLUG-IN DRIVERS AND SIRIUSXM: The Volt's built-in
      satellite radio and traffic-aware navigation
      services are features we appreciate in our Volt
      (and Leaf) -- another reason why people we show
      them to say, "This is a real car!" As the first
      owners reach the expiration of their three-month
      trial periods, some are encountering confusing
      and varying responses on renewal rates. (Plus
      rates went up in December.) After several
      time-consuming conversations with customer
      service representatives, we got $370.90 for two
      years for XM Everything+Traffic/Nav for one
      vehicle and a further-discounted $282.16 for a
      second vehicle. No need to settle for less!

      EUROPE: FUME-FREE CITIES IN 2050: Looking way
      down the road, the European Commission's
      Transport 2050 program calls for "emissions-free
      cities" by 2050, by eliminating
      conventionally-fueled cars, which they describe
      as "non-hybrids." Since conventional hybrids run
      on liquid fuels within very short distances, we
      think that in addition to improving prospects for
      EVs, this will encourage PHEVs whose drivers save
      their electric range for times they are driving
      in cities.

      FAST-CHARGING PHEV BUSES: We've gotten emails
      suggesting battery switching and
      charge-at-every-stop strategies for transit
      buses. Great minds think alike! A consortium of
      Swedish companies is testing the Busbaar, a
      fast-charging pantograph facility at either end
      the route of a series-electric hybrid bus. This
      extends the battery range rom 1-3 hours to 18,
      and the diesel-fueled generator ensures the bus
      won't be stranded in traffic or cold weather.

      PLUG-IN FAMILY & PHEV FOR SALE: A Sunday front
      page story in the Bay Area Newsgroup chain (San
      Jose Mercury News, Contra Costa Times, others)
      included quotes featuring the Kramer-Lefkowitz
      family and a photo of our Volt, Leaf, and
      converted Prius. http://www.mercurynews.com/top-stories/ci_17764005

      ADVT: Our first PHEV owned by a consumer driver
      is for sale. As it was seen and driven by leaders
      http://www.calcars.org/photos-leaders.html and
      http://www.calcars.org/photos-people.html , this
      car helped prove what was possible and helped
      build our campaigns. We even flew it to
      Washington at a critical moment!
      http://www.calcars.org/phevs-in-dc.html It has
      97,000 (ground) miles, navigation/DVD changer,
      Bluetooth -- and a new Hymotion/A123Systems pack.
      It's gotten regular TLC from
      http://www.lusciousgarage.com and
      http://www.patsgarage.com . It's going for $15K,
      picked up in the SF Bay Area -- with a discount
      for a buyer who keeps the "Plug-OK" license plate
      and some of the smaller stickers on the car.

      -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
      Felix Kramer fkramer@...
      Founder California Cars Initiative
      -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
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