Russ Steele

Toyota Motor Corp has scrapped plans for widespread sales of a new all-electric minicar, saying it had misread the market and the ability of still-emerging battery technology to meet consumer demands.

Uchiyamada who spearheaded Prius development: “The current capabilities of electric vehicles do not meet society’s needs, whether it may be the distance the cars can run, or the costs, or how it takes a long time to charge”

More at Reuters HERE.

My questions is, if Toyota has discovered electrical vehicles cannot not meet society’s needs, when will GM discover that the Volt is not capable of meeting societies needs either?  Your thoughts?


About Russ Steele
Freelance writer and climate change blogger. Russ spent twenty years in the Air Force as a navigator specializing in electronics warfare and digital systems. After his service he was employed for sixteen years as concept developer for TRW, an aerospace and automotive company, and then was CEO of a non-profit Internet provider for 18 months. Russ's articles have appeared in Comstock's Business, Capitol Journal, Trailer Life, Monitoring Times, and Idaho Magazine.

2 Responses to Duh!

  1. Sean says:

    I don’t think that Toyota was saying as much about the Volt as it was about the Leaf. Remember that Toyota has made a plug in hybrid Prius that has a 12 mile all electric range. This pretty much says, let’s use electric on surface streets until you get to the freeway and then let the gas engine take over. Given the extra weight and cost of very large batteries to get the electric range of the Volt up to near 40 miles, Toyota chose to make a much smaller step.
    It’s also interesting to compare the Prius hybrid to the Prius C plug-in hybrid. The Prius is considered a midsize care while the Prius C is a compact. The engine in a Prius is 1.8 L while the Prius C has a 1.5 L. The overall fuel economy of each is 50 mpg while the Prius C gets better city mileage and the midsize Prius gets better highway mileage. The cost for the Prius is about 20% higher than the Prius C so you don’t pay extra for the electric option but you likely lose a lot of interior space.

  2. Dena says:

    Electric drive has been around for over 100 years and the railroads have switched to electric drive after World War II. The problem has always been and still is finding a current source that can hold as much power as a tank full of fuel. Batteries are not rocket science as given the metal and the reaction, one can calculate how much power it will produce. Someday someone may make a break through but so far it has been evolution with one small change after another. In the last 100 year, battery capacity has gone up 3 fold over lead acid so don’t expect great things soon.

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