Thursday, May 01, 2008

Toyota and General Motors struggle to bring out the first electric car

Planet earth is at stake and the auto-makers need to do something to save the world (and win the consumers!?). So the would be biggest auto-maker of the world and the current-biggest auto-maker come toe to toe in a fight to build the first green car. Toyota and General Motors are struggling to build world’s first environment friendly car. Toyota is rallying with “gas-electric hybrid” and GM with “plug in” electric vehicles. reports:

Watanabe announced that Toyota will market a test fleet of rechargeable hybrid vehicles to companies or government agencies by the end of 2010.

The comments were the clearest statement yet from the top Japanese automaker of its commitment to plug-in vehicle technology and amounted to a direct challenge to GM, which won widespread attention at the auto show last year, when it announced plans to build its own rechargeable vehicle, the Volt.

Gas-electric hybrid is a combination of electric power and traditional combustion engine power. Plug in on the contrary, is like a car with a battery that needs to be charged from time to time. The plug ins go short distance. The Volt by GM will run 40 miles on battery power with a back up gasoline engine installed. Troy Clarke, Head of GM’s North American operations, told reporters that his company had been planning to launch a plug in version of its Saturn Vue which might come out before the Volt. The new version will run 10 miles on battery power.

On the other hand, Toyota is going on with the plan to set up a new facility for producing next-generation lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles.

Now, the million dollar question is, whose going to be the best car? Well, we all have to hold our breath till 2010.

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