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Comment: We need the costs to come down!

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We need the costs to come down!

In 2006, I remember reading a 2002 study from Argonne National Laboratories explaining that with mass production of electric cars, Lithium Ion batteries could get down to $250/kWh in cost. When the Tesla Roadster came out, they were roughly $600/kWh.

The technology for a viable, affordable, long-range electric car has existed since the 1990s. 20 years later, I am glad to see that someone is finally making this a reality. Production volume has been the hurdle to overcome in order to get cost down, and this very well may do it.

At $250/kWh, a 30 kWh pack will cost $7,500. A midsized sedan designed for efficiency, with say, a 0.16 drag coefficient, 22 sq ft frontal area, low rolling resistance tires, a 150 kW AC drive system, and a laden weight(including a driver and 4 passengers) of 3,500 lbs could be made to use less than 0.120 kWh/mile on the highway at a steady 70 mph. With 150 kW of power from the motor, the vehicle would probably do 0-60 mph in under 8 seconds, if geared for 130 mph with a single speed ratio(no need for a transmission). To 80% discharge, such a car would have a range of 200 miles, driven conservatively with the cruise control set at 70 mph, and 150+ miles "real world".

Such a car could be produced without needing exotic materials, and very likely could see a price point in the sub $30,000 range. The cost per mile for batteries would be measured in pennies, making it much cheaper than conventional gasoline.

I will not be surprised if Tesla produces a car with specs similar to this within the next 3 years, although it may have more drag, and thus need a bigger battery. A 0.16 Cd would be astonishingly low, although not impossible: see 1999 GM Precept.

I hope we shall crush in its birth the aristocracy of our moneyed corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws our country. ~Thomas Jefferson