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GM electric Cars

GM is introducing 2 new electric cars. Along with a list of 20 new electric cars by 2023.

They are also working on fuel cell vehicles…mainly in the commercial sector.

EXCELLENT GM. Keep it up.

Hidden in all this is the long history of GM’s involvement in electric and fuel cell cars. Long before the GM EV-1, long before the Volt and Bolt. One of GM’s Delco divisions was working on electric cars in the 1970’s. A Rabbit and Chevette were tooling around with little more than forklift technology - lead-acid batteries and DC chopper controllers powering brushed DC motors. Fuel cells were in development inside GM Research all along those years showing little success. None of those projects totally went away in the next decade, just slowed down a bit. Until the California mandate drove the EV-1.

Jump forward a couple decades, huge progress in the power electronics field that allowed AC motors to replace DC and be controlled by variable frequency AC drives. That was what the EV-1 used back in the early 90’s and what all EV’s use today. Fuel cells also ramped back up in the late 90’s with most all the work initially being focused on Solid Oxide Fuel Cells (SOFC) that would use gasoline to make electricity directly. That eliminates the need for different infrastructure. Theoretical efficiency was around 40% but not achieved in prototypes. That gave way to hydrogen fuel cell development as a more likely candidate. That’s where fuel cells are today but the hydrogen refueling station infrastructure is a big issue. No gas, no go.

GM is not and was not alone by any means. EV and fuel cell development is long entrenched at Hyundai, Honda, Toyota, Mercedes and more. The automotive landscape is changing.

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I agree…but nice to see they aren’t standing around.

There is an interview in USA Today with Mark Reuss, director of development for GM. He said the strategic plan is to phase out ICE engines and replace them with battery or fuel cell propulsion. He wouldn’t talk dates, just announced the intent to make the change. It isn’t surprising, given announcements in Europe and China that they will only allow electric vehicles in the future.

We all know that if any manufacturer isn’t moving forward, they are moving backwards. There is no standing still, even to catch your breath. Someone else always wants your lunch. Just make sure you want it more.


My grandfather used to say when you see everyone running in one direction, that’s the time to turn around and go the other way.

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I agree!
That’s why I have invested all of my money in companies that manufacture buggy whips.
Surely horse-drawn vehicles will be the next wave in transportation, as evidenced by the fact that nobody is currently embracing that type of… technology.


You make me laugh. I’ve never liked horses. But our grid is at the max, not hardened so susceptible, and not a lot of support for expansion. I wouldn’t want an electric car in PR right now.

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Salmon all swim upstream and look what the end result of that is… :wink:

The one unanswered question to me is when everything becomes all electric where is the infrastructure going to come from to service millions of electric vehicles?

Environmentalists do not want coal, nuclear, natural gas, or hydro for a number of reasons so where is the charging system going to come from?


I do not want to be stuck in an electric car in a Western NY blizzard. Even if you use up all your gas keeping warm for 3 days, all someone has to do is bring you 5 gallons of gas. How are they going to bring you 150 miles of electric?


Those of you living in cloudy places like Buffalo or Rochester, NY are going to have a lot of trouble charging up your electric cars with solar panels. We in the Sunshine State, not quite the same problems! :grin:

Seriously, though, if we all switch to electric cars overnight - and 10 years would be overnight in the utility industry - we will bring the grid to its knees. It isn’t capable of handling that monumental shift in energy delivery. New power plants take decades so there will be a huge unfulfilled demand for electrical power. Natural gas consumption will increase since that’s the most practical, scaleable fuel for power plants to use since solar doesn’t work at night and the wind is not dependable. I don’t see any solutions on the horizon to the product plans of the automakers.

Any suggestions for a solution?

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It’s NOT going to happen over night. It’ll be gradual increase in the grid.

Living in the northeast and having worked in the power industry, it’s interesting to me that the 2023 through 2040 timeframe automakers and EV advocates are using for battery-electric vehicle adoption coincides with most of our nuclear power plants expiration and decommissioning. Vermont lost it nuke plant and Mass is about to lose one. Seabrook is scheduled to close in 2030. Solar and Wind cannot replace this massive low carbon power production in the northeast. Democrat and Republican politicians (and constituents) both blocked the largest wind project in New England (Cape Wind). They have also locked arms to protest fracking and natural gas pipelines. My electric bill in Plainville lists solar power contribution as less than 1% and you see it everywhere. Mustangman asks a valid question.

The image is my hometown of Norfolk’s solar array as it appears in much of the winter.


With GM, VW, and everybody else pushing EVs hard, I have trouble seeing how Tesla will compete in 5 years.

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Perhaps Tesla’s admirable solar shingle products will become their real bread and butter.


As Mustangman appropriately pointed out, compared to the glacial pace of infrastructure improvements at power companies, a decade or two is virtually overnight to them.

Power companies around here have been pushing conservation for decades. They do not want to add infrastructure for increased demand. That costs them tremendous amounts of money up front to fund the build out. Salem MA has been converting an old coal plant to gas for the last 5-6 years. It took that long just to weave through the political process and approvals before a single ounce of dirt was moved. They still have some years to go before it is operational.

None of the grids are running with a lot of excess capacity as it is…

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Where did you hear that? Meanwhile, I keep seeing articles like this one:

California invested heavily in solar power. Now there’s so much that other states are sometimes paid to take it

Between their Solar and Battery production they’ll survive.

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That’s wishful thinking. Like I told my kids as they were growing up, "All you have is the idea for it." :blush:

A nuke plant near me (a friend was a plant operator) was decommissioned and other whackos are tearing out hydro dams around here and returning rivers to their natural state. :grimacing:

Any idea how long it takes to plan, locate, cut through regulations to build enough “not in my back yard” power plants (choose your energy source) and enhance transmission capabilities for all these EVs? :laughing:

I seriously doubt they plan on being around. I’m sure they can see the handwriting on the wall. They’ll make a fortune though, as the are gobbled up by GM.

That’s actually not a bad business plan!
The young guy who created several years back became wealthy from running that venture, and when he later sold the whole enterprise to Amazon he became a multi-millionaire.

A few years later, he created as a competitor to Amazon. After running Jet for a few years, he sold that enterprise to Wal-Mart for many more millions.