Volt Birth Watch 5: Toyota and GM Play the Dozens

volt birth watch 5 toyota and gm play the dozens

The gloves are off; GM's Vice Chairman Bob Lutz and Toyota's U.S. VP for Communications, Irv Miller, are having an alternative powerplant smackdown. On a company web site today, Miller wrote "the advanced lithium-ion batteries that the Volt would use, batteries suitable for the long-term rigors of everyday automotive use, don't exist" while pointing out the Prius uses "market-ready" technology. Lutz, never one to let facts come between him and his opinions, still insists the Volt will be ready for the market in 2010. He countered Miller's remarks in an interview with Bloomberg at the Frankfurt Auto Show: "People have a very simplistic [view]: Toyota … are saving the planet from certain destruction, whereas General Motors … is the anti-Christ that's trying to plunge us into the abyss. The only way we can get out of that is by being more environmental and leading with more environmental technology than Toyota." Uh, hello? Bob? It's hard to lead when you're relying on technology that doesn't exist yet– and that the competition has publicly stated they'll also adopt, you know, as soon as someone invents it.

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  • AGR AGR on Sep 12, 2007

    It would seem that the general concensus is to maintain the status quo, and find all the reasons to shoot down any novel solution to our transportation challenges.

  • Rocketeer Rocketeer on Sep 12, 2007

    Can we all get to the really important point? Will hot rodding an electrical car be as simple as installing higher current breakers? How about a flat black Prious with a chopped top? Anyone?

  • Johnson Johnson on Sep 12, 2007
    It would seem that the general concensus is to maintain the status quo, and find all the reasons to shoot down any novel solution to our transportation challenges. It would also seem that some people are content with seeing unsafe, dangerous yet "novel" vehicles be sold on the market. Toyota is given a lot of credit not just because they were the first company to put a hybrid on the market, but also because the Prius has proved to be very safe and very reliable. But I digress. If some people are content and satisfied with seeing GM rush-to-market a "novel" vehicle that heavily relies on Li-ion batteries with the potential for it to be a huge disaster for GM, then so be it.

  • Dean Dean on Sep 12, 2007

    Glenn126 - I don't get the impression unohugh won't drive a Prius because he's a Luddite. Usually Luddites aren't tech averse because the car is "a POS" as he so (in)eloquently states it. Maybe unohugh is "reaction compensating" like Senator Craig, and he secretly really wants to drive a Prius except that his SUV-driving buddies will all think he's a pansy geek.

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