Bob Lutz: “Electric Car Future Definitely Coming” (Video)

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Bob Lutz was recently interviewed on CNBC’s “Squawk On The Street” program about Tesla Motors and the electric vehicle industry. As always, he had some interesting things to say. (Video at bottom of page, after commentary.)

During the interview, he mentioned the importance of range and range anxiety, and made a great point similar to what I have been making for a while now:

If you can charge an electric car in 15 to 20 minutes. At that point, who needs a gasoline engine?

My point was that charge time is just as (if not more important) to people than range itself, because as long as the battery can charge quickly (~5-15 minutes) whenever needed, the driver can keep recharging and continue driving as long as they want.

Lutz also made a misleading statement, which was that Tesla Motors “simply crammed” more batteries into their cars to achieve long range, basically just making its cars very expensive.

The Tesla Model S has the longest range of all electric cars on the market, and its batteries occupy the least interior space of all electric cars — even compared to cars which have shorter range. This alone indicates that Tesla Motors has innovated significantly.

Furthermore, the Model S has a design specifically aimed at increasing the efficiency of the car.

To put it lightly, Lutz shouldn’t make statements about things he either doesn’t know or that are intentionally misleading. There’s a reason the Model S has won just about every major car award out there.

The interviewer asked why the big three automakers haven’t gone after Elon Musk and Tesla Motors? Lutz said one possible reason is that they are not competing with each other.

They can’t be competing with each other, because Tesla Motors makes a completely different type and caliber of cars from the “big three” car manufacturers. Ford and GM both offer electrically propelled vehicles, but they are lower cost models intended for the masses — much lower end than the Tesla vehicles. Tesla Motors has been manufacturing exclusively high-end cars. Therefore, it competes with luxury brands (to some extent).

Apart from that. Tesla Motors is a tiny company. General Motors is established. Tiny companies are not threatening to big ones.

Anyway, here’s the full interview with Lutz:

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Nicholas Brown

Has a keen interest in physics-intensive topics such as electricity generation, refrigeration and air conditioning technology, energy storage, and geography. His website is:

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