While other carmakers, including electric pioneer Nissan, are downgrading their EV euphoria, GM’s CEO Dan Akerson suddenly sounds uncharacteristically gung-ho on the issue. At an industry conference, he says GM is working on developing an electric car that has a range of as much as 200 miles.
“There will be breakthroughs in battery technology, they’re on the horizon,” Akerson said at the IHS CERAWeek energy conference, while Bloomberg was taking notes. “We’re actually developing a car today which is really anathema to the way the auto industry works: We’re running a dual play on the technology to see which one will succeed. One will result in a 100-mile range, the other will be a 200-mile range.”
Even the true believers at GM-Volt are skeptical. Said one commenter:
“Musk talk from Akerson. Sounds like the battery experiments have not crashed and burned yet. Or just get a Model S today.”
I have talked to several large OEMs, and none of them sees a battery breakthrough on the horizon, at least not on an horizon that is visible with the naked eye. Toyota and BMW are collaborating on a lithium air battery, but they aren’t sure whether it will work at all.
Both a 100 mile and a 200 mile EV can be built today. Just load a lot of batteries in it, then, charge a lot. In all senses of the word.