I've been kicking myself since the meeting last night for my very unprepared remarks. I seemed to have missed the really key points, and just restated the obvious. something about opening my mouth in a crowd only seems to let my thoughts leak out in an ill formed puddle . oh well....
I meant or at least ought to have said more about using a demo car to obtain purchase/lease commitments from businesses that we could then use to fortify a business case presentation to take to the Paul Allens of the world. But I am having second thoughts on that approach now too. I agree with Ken and don't like the idea of being beholden to california or east coast financiers holding the purse strings. I guess it's rather naive to think that we could find no strings attached grants?
The motivation for that approach stems from the high cost, high risk nature of Li-Ion batteries (the joys of the being on the bleeding edge).
I thought too of some sort of leasing arrangement. a variation on that would be to lease only the battery. The customer supplies the car and pays for the conversion and we lease them the battery charging monthly fees perhaps. In this way we ensure an on going revenue stream after the sale. the norwegians are headed this way with their Think! car. using a web-enabled battery management system and GPS it'd be very easy to get any battery's location and keep tabs on it's state of charge and performance profile. It could even alert us instantly of abusive driving indicated by sustained high amp draws.
Pizza delivery! Man I bet that'd be an easy sell. and newspaper home delivery. I carried papers when I was a kid but nobody does that anymore.
After driving Li-Ion for a year and now having been back with lead-acid for the last 3 months, I'm convinced that Li-Ion is not only the pack of choice it's required. I love my truck. It has decent range and suits my needs but being a lead-sled it is rather slow and sluggish. Like a non-ev friend of mine said "It'll teach you patience". I can't see the pizza delivery person having the patience or being willing to learn it ...
so in my mind the biggest obstacle is batteries but not only batteries, controllers, motors, everything is already in extreme high demand. It'll be way too easy to over commit/promise and then not being able to deliver a car let alone the promised performance would be disastrous.
hate to end on that less than positive note but have to get going ....
Remember the mtg next tues 7pm Mosaic bring your ideas, passion and energy!