Wednesday, June 6, 2012

NYC to test drive EV cabs

In recent years, we've seen new technology competitors throw down the gauntlet in order to get a stronghold on their market. We saw it with HD DVD and Blu-Ray, and now we're seeing it with electric vehicles. 

NYC is about to launch a pilot program during 2012 where six Nissan Leaf EVs will begin operating in the city as taxis. In October 2013, Nissan's gas-engine NV200 will begin its reign as New York's new go-to taxi. 

However, the Nissan Leaf has some competition to surpass in order to nab the coveted spot as the EV cab of the future. First, the Leaf, is sort of a gateway vehicle to Nissan's CHAdeMo, a quick-charge EV. With the CHAdeMo, Nissan wants to set the standard globally for quick-charge EVs. 

Of course, the CHAdeMo has competition backed by General Motors Co in the form of the Combo. 

As expected, the two competing vehicles do not have compatible charging capabilities, which would mean one will have to win out over the other before a viable solution for installing and managing quick-charge stations can be found. 

EVs have a limited travel range, so it will be essential to have a solution before any large scale adoption can occur.  

Alternatives such as setting up battery changing stations has been suggested, but it remains unclear at this time how realistic of an option that may be.

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