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Father of EV1 Says Electric Car
Breakthrough Is Close

Forbes, by Joann Muller

Original Article

Posted By:Rafter, 4/17/2013 2:12:55 PM

Bob Purcell, known in the automotive industry as the father of General Motors GM EV1 plug-in car, has been in the automotive business for 45 years, the last 20 of which have been dedicated to electric vehicle development. And even though he’s 60 years old and should be starting to think about retirement, he’s not about to quit now — not when the industry seems so close to a breakthrough. “I’m not going to retire until I get one to high volume for real,” said Purcell. “I’ll be honest. I think we’re there.”

Comments:
(The text was oddly difficult to copy... so here´s the takeaway info... )
This development is a motor in each wheel, thus eliminating drive shaft, tranny, axle, differential, and lots of weight. Interesting concept... He has investors and is marketing to all auto manufacturers on all populated continents.

      


Post Reply  

Reply 1 - Posted by: disklxik, 4/17/2013 2:21:53 PM     (No. 9280664)

If he could sell them for under $20,000 than this is a good thing!

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Reply 2 - Posted by: civilservant, 4/17/2013 2:27:52 PM     (No. 9280676)

Seeing as how the electric car was first introduced in the late 1800´s, I´d say this is somewhat optimistic.
And the battery range of the FIRST electric car? 40 miles. Just like now.

Darn those laws of physics!!!

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Reply 3 - Posted by: VinGoombatz, 4/17/2013 2:29:04 PM     (No. 9280679)

Still got a big bolus of battery sitting somewhere. With all its lovely toxins.

I´m looking forward to about a decade from now, when we begin to have piles of used up electric cars from the beginning of the century.

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Reply 4 - Posted by: wtm, 4/17/2013 2:30:02 PM     (No. 9280680)

This is similar to the current train engines. A diesel generator that provides electric, to a motor located at each train wheel.

Problem is, are you going to like a small car that is made entirely out of "plastic" so you can get the FABULOUS mpg ratings ??

AND, they still haven´t made a good battery for these vehicles !!!

(Question: Where is the Air Conditioner unit going to be powered from - i.e, no engine ?)

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Reply 5 - Posted by: crimea river, 4/17/2013 2:38:09 PM     (No. 9280701)

EVs need battery improvements - not the motor. Electric motor efficiencies are greater than 90% so where you place it (them) in the vehicle is nowhere near as important as a battery that can get you 300 miles between charges. That, and the ability to charge the battery in 15 minutes are the breakthroughs needed. Neither are close.


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Reply 6 - Posted by: Scrubber, 4/17/2013 2:42:52 PM     (No. 9280707)

This guy started at GM at age 15? I don´t think so. And in 20 years this is state of the art? Balderdash!

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Reply 7 - Posted by: jimjr, 4/17/2013 2:43:46 PM     (No. 9280711)

Bob, I have two words for you: "Energy Density". The battery pack for the Chevy Dolt, er, Volt is "T" shaped, about 4 feet across the top and 6-8 feet long and weighs about 400 lbs. It contains the rough equivalent energy of 1 gallon of gasoline.

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Reply 8 - Posted by: wsdiego, 4/17/2013 2:53:17 PM     (No. 9280732)

What do you do with a car that it´s battery is dead and will not take a charge after 5 years and it cost 5 to 10 thousand dollars to replace? The car as it sits is worthless! I doubt they will ever over come that big problem!

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Reply 9 - Posted by: MattMusson, 4/17/2013 3:15:25 PM     (No. 9280785)

A Battery Breakthrough is what is needed.

Till then the car is an expensive toy.

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Reply 10 - Posted by: tomanderson61, 4/17/2013 3:23:10 PM     (No. 9280795)

I heard this 30 years ago. Enough.

30 minute charge time on 120V.
200 mile range on 30 minute charge.
Range includes use of AC or heater and stereo.
Cost of small electric car $20k.
No issues in extreme cold or heat.
No danger in case of accident and breakage of batteries.
Battery replacement less than $1000, good for 5+ years
No reduction in performance over the 5 years
Decent acceleration

Accomplish this you will sell tons. Until then, shut up.

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Reply 11 - Posted by: hotrod, 4/17/2013 3:27:09 PM     (No. 9280803)

Until the infrastructure is there, electric cars are nothing but short-range commuters. What is needed is ´´service stations´´ that can change out a battery pack in just a few minutes- comparable to the time it takes to fill up with gas. That would require standardization of battery packs among the auto manufacturers, as well as better batteries that increase driving range to at least 100 miles.

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Reply 12 - Posted by: cleanhouseindc, 4/17/2013 3:28:12 PM     (No. 9280808)

Until you can charge the car in the timeframe of filling a gas tank, or have such ridiculous distances that you can go between charges, it´s a non-starter. You can´t change human behavior.



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Reply 13 - Posted by: schnapps, 4/17/2013 3:32:15 PM     (No. 9280820)

Placing a motor in each wheel reduces overall weight but road-handling will be a lot worse. Also the first pot-hole you hit will require a very expensive motor replacement. Just saying...

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Reply 14 - Posted by: SkyTexas, 4/17/2013 3:41:00 PM     (No. 9280833)

And you´re still burning coal somewhere to execute your "clean" technology. Or do liberals think electricity comes from lightning?

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Reply 15 - Posted by: dvc, 4/17/2013 3:42:00 PM     (No. 9280838)

Electric cars have been the "car of the future" for more than a century, I wouldn´t invest $10 in an electric car company or take one for free if I had to give up my real car.

Expect a limited heater, limited-AC microcar that will go about 25-35 miles until it STOPS if driven at highway speeds. If you use a heater or AC, range will substantially less. In southern CA, if you live close to work, drive city streets at low speeds and work has a special power plug installed for BIG bucks, this could be adequate as a commuter only car. The only way to exceed this is with $50K of batteries or more a la Fiskar, now bankrupt.

Most of us would find it an expensive, near useless toy. Expect less than 3% market penetration EVER unless they force gasoline up to $25/gallon, which they are trying as hard as they can to do.

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Reply 16 - Posted by: tip35c, 4/17/2013 3:58:53 PM     (No. 9280857)

Electric cars, any minute now.

Flying cars, right behind. Promise!

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Reply 17 - Posted by: Kerryman, 4/17/2013 4:10:00 PM     (No. 9280875)

Swamp Gas!!!

Semper Fi

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Reply 18 - Posted by: pineledger, 4/17/2013 4:18:02 PM     (No. 9280890)

Will they blow off the road when passed by an 18-wheeler?

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Reply 19 - Posted by: KTWO, 4/17/2013 4:25:17 PM     (No. 9280900)

The idea isn´t new but the specific designs will be. That may be a genuine engineering improvement. I hope it is.

I also hope Purcell´s venture isn´t being subsidized by government.

Batteries must improve before pure electrics will defeat the ICE. And Purcell can´t change that.

And simply saying there won´t be enough gasoline - liquid fuels - doesn´t make it so. That solemn prediction has been said wrong for fifty years.



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Reply 20 - Posted by: fayebeck, 4/17/2013 4:44:36 PM     (No. 9280921)

What about that farmer in Kansas whom the auto industry paid millions to hide that 300 mpg carburetor in his barn? Is he the same dude that also has the perpetual motion engine too?

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Reply 21 - Posted by: franq, 4/17/2013 4:49:44 PM     (No. 9280936)

Range with heat or A/C? Probably minimal. Battery life? Replacement cost? Trade in value? Mr. Fusion is probably more viable.

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Reply 22 - Posted by: JustRight, 4/17/2013 4:57:26 PM     (No. 9280955)

After the failures we have had so far - at taxpayer expense, its time to shelve this electric car nonsense and get these folks who push them back on their meds!

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Reply 23 - Posted by: veritas, 4/17/2013 5:04:30 PM     (No. 9280972)

OK, putting the motors at the wheels [as on the Mars Curiosity Rover, and IIRC the Apollo moon car, etc.] is a good design decision. As posters note, electric locomotives have done this since maybe the 1920s? But eliminating a lot of driveline losses isn´t "solving" the real problem of battery-powered cars.

In terms of physics laws, what battery-car buffs are telling us is that they know how to make water run uphill. Or that "that´s all that´s left" to "figger out."

Electric cars [hybrids, basically] are/can be workable. A workable hybrid generates electricity on-board from a fuel-powered engine. That´s how a "diesel" locomotive works. Very efficient. But the efficiency comes from 3 things: a. eliminating losses from long-distance transmission of electricity; b. eliminating driveline losses by gearing a motor directly to each drive axle; and c. carrying a high-energy-density fuel on-board.

But, a locomotive doesn´t need lots of interior space, or have constantly-changing torque loads. Railroads have spent hug amounts of capital taking grades out of their tracks, and trains run at steady speeds as much as possible.

#7´s post is quite good. I would add 2 points: a. The gallon of gas the 400 pounds of batteries is compared with weighs just 5 or 6 pounds; and b. a battery car hauls that 400 pound load whether the batteries are "full" or "empty." That dead load wastes a lot of energy. The problem is not soluble with any present or foreseeable battery technology [he says obviously].

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Reply 24 - Posted by: ColonialAmerican1623, 4/17/2013 5:25:06 PM     (No. 9281011)

They have been talking about the electric car for a hundred years and we haven´t gotten much past the golf cart.

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Reply 25 - Posted by: harper, 4/17/2013 7:51:50 PM     (No. 9281280)

Close only counts with horseshoes and hand grenades.

Until some magic battery is found, the electric car is a progressive pipe dream.

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