Monday, March 28, 2011

To be, or not to be (green), that is the question

The title above was going to be my next blog post for GigaOm.

But, they thought a better title was “How Plug-In Hybrid Cars Could Be Game Changers”.

I still think my title is clever (and I’m sure Shakespeare would approve), but on a site like GigaOm, it does not say anything about the content of the blog post.   I’ve never worried about things like that, but it’s the price you pay for playing in the Major Leagues :-) 

Anyway, I’m beginning to think about the Chevy Volt.  Not sure I agree with the title, but I’m seriously thinking about it.    

Read all about it here



  1. My wife got a Volt in Jan. and so far so good but I'd recommend waiting until the price gouging cools down a bit.

  2. Hi Venkat, I have been following your blog way before you joined forces with GigaOM. I am all for minimizing pollution in vehicles, (I don't say zero pollution since that is just a myth). I like your writing style too. This morning, I ran into this piece of news which talks about swapping batteries at charging stations instead of actually charging.

    I think swapping batteries makes more sense than waiting to get them charged. The technology to swap shouldn't be hard to figure out, and it takes far less time than charging. I do agree that this might mean standardizing batteries shape and size, but its a good trade off for convenience. I would like to hear your comments on this.

  3. Hi Venkat, I passed the wrong link for my earlier comments. The correct link is

  4. Here's my take on why BP and battery swapping is not a good idea.

  5. Venkat,
    For your next article can you shed some light on the german company DBM's battery claims? (feasible, plausible, not enough info/misleading?)

    There are a lot of comments on the website due to a recent post on the site highlighting the alleged claims of DBM's battery breakthrough:

  6. Yes, I came here to get your take on DBM also. Please comment

  7. Venkat,

    I often read battery articles that come from various newsfeeds, but lately I keep seeing strangely thoughtful and well-written ones. I then realize I've stumbled onto your GigaOm posts. Congrats on the wider audience, and keep the good posts rolling.


  8. Venkat,

    You could do a similar tradeoff on many things.

    I have a car pushing 6 years that averages > 28 mpg (12 kmpl). It is a petrol car, more than quite well-maintained, manual car. I am tempted to switch to a smaller new car -- promises 25% more in fuel efficiency.

    I am not a badge-wearing green. But someone who bothers about our rapacious consumption and will do his bit to ameliorate it.

    a) live close to work. Used to, but burns a hole in potential savings. Could afford a home in a far away suburb only.
    b) car-pool, commute by public transport, work from home whenever possible. Car-pool has been difficult due to my bad time schedules. But the rest I try and do. Can do better actually.
    c) advocate fuel taxation. will change the shape of American cities, but that is a huge problem there .. you'll be dead politically.

    the original maams

  9. I agree with one of the comments on the article that the writer of it has a pretty long commute. I think cars like the Leaf are aimed at a more city living type lifestyle where the commute is just a few miles.

  10. Powered by electricity without being tethered to electrical outlets, the Volt does everything a great car does. It's better than any other.

  11. First off, I like your original title better. More creative that way, but yeah, readers wouldn't exactly know what the article is going to be about. Moving on, my vote would be for the Volt. That is if you have the extra budget. I'm thinking it's not too much of a "loss". After all, you still get to have tax credits. And you're doing your part for Mother Nature. The next generation of our families will more than benefit from each one of us going green. But that's just me.

  12. You've done a good job for sharing this useful information with us. This has given me food for thought. Great post! Have a good day everyone! :)

  13. Its right that the alternate could take time to expand its resources but its a big source to reduce the Global Warming. We should encourage more the alternate energy.

  14. Hey Venkat,
    Nice article, Blogs are so much informative on this topic. I am so impressed by the info that you've on this website. Keep it up!

    laptops batteries

  15. The last time I drove a Chevy Volt was about six months ago, so I was looking forward to getting another chance to drive last year's Automobile of the Year. The Volt had been plugged in to the 240V charger all day, and when I climbed behind the wheel, the range indicator showed 29 miles. By the time I had driven the 11 miles home, however, there were only 12 miles left. In fairness to the Volt, it was cold and rainy, and I had both the heat and the seat heaters turned on. By the time my husband and I drove to a restaurant for dinner, the range was down to 2 miles. No problem, as the Volt switched over to the gasoline engine on the way home from the restaurant. The transition was quite seamless - no jerkiness and no huge increase in noise (I was on the freeway, so there was already some road and wind noise, plus the radio, while running under electric power).

  16. I find this blog interesting. I happen to look for new sites where I could learn more about batteries. Thanks I got here.

  17. Thanks for that post. Im from Germany and we have like green batteries too.

  18. Hybrid cars are, of course, playing a large part in the current era of the green transportation revolution. In the past decade, they've gone from avant-garde curiosities to mainstream objects seen in parking lots everywhere.

  19. We are all interested to see the next blog. I think we will get so much information from it.

  20. This is an excellent review.I would love to read more about this topic.

  21. I was excited our company got the Volt as we are based in the outline of the city and a tad bit of a drive.
    I just noticed that the Volt really doesn't have the pickup I'm used too. I'm in my 40's so I do not "beat" on the car but concerns me. I have taken the car back to the dealership but they say it's fine.

    Everyone noticing a lose of power most of the time?

  22. Hi Venkat! I just found your blog (through a friend's recommendation). It's great! Thanks for writing it. I'm a student at LBL and UCB (graduating in 2 weeks) and write for the BERC blog and I recently wrote a two part piece on electric vehicles. Perhaps you've seen the articles, but in case you haven't, I thought you might be curious:

    mamayer at lbl