Where To Learn About Plug-In Hybrids: a list abridged for pith and departure
Information and News
Valuable Yahoo Groups
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Every cause needs its champion, and for plug-in hybrids, that person is Felix Kramer. Founder and lead strategist for Calcars, Felix is a master of sythesis, taking technical complexity and minutia and producing a clear and crucial movement for our transportation future.
Felix’s own plug-in hybrid, an 04 Prius converted by EnergyCS, needed The Vitals last week, and what an honor it was to provide. The Prius usually goes to the dealer, to demystify the technology and spread the word among Toyota’s own, but it took a break to support our new business. Great conversation and 4 quarts of rerefined oil later, Felix has been kind enough to endorse us on the Calcars website:
For more from Felix, I highly recommend the Calcars’ news group. Sign up here…
The Prius is radical: both “rad” and iconoclastic. EV Mode stands in evidence of both. If you’re not familiar, there is a wiki on EV Mode and its button:
But you can experience it first hand on our shop car or your own Prius, so long as it is an 04 model or newer. Toyota offers a stock EV button (pictured on LG’s car) available through Sigma Automotive ($235 parts and installation) particular to 04-05 and 06-08 models. Coastal Etech offers a very slick alternative using the “cancel” function of the cruise control branch. (LG’s price for the part and installation: $170.)
EV mode greatly amplifies the thrill of regular “stealth mode”, with greater power and speeds up to 34 mph, and it eliminates the anxiety of making minute trips (for street cleaning, e.g.) in the seven seconds before the ICE turns on. You will also know the hunger for longer EV performance, and therefore bigger battery capacity, of the plug-in hybrid community—those that spend long weekends in the confines of their garages troubleshooting circuit boards and investigating lithium-phosphate chemistry, in the pursuit of the coveted AER (all-electric range).
My mother lives in Cleveland, Ohio—a long way from most places, including Luscious Garage. To compensate, she likes to travel: sometimes by plane, as in last week, but more often via internet. Since our website launched, my mom has been especially fond of the blog, to keep up on our developments but also to interact—in the form of comments. She’s now commented on nearly every blog post, and as a reader you might wonder, “Who is this person?”
Well here she is, during her recent visit to town. What a cutie!
Unconditional love is always nice, but it really comes in handy when you take a big risk, like opening a business. Mom—I know you’re out there—I just want to say *THANK YOU* for all the support and enthusiasm. You’re beautiful and fabulous and an inspiration to me on this luscious journey. xoxoxoxo and come back to visit soon!
In the debate over alternative transportation, hybrids and battery-electrics are often posited in competition. After the EV1 fiasco (re: WKTEC?) EV enthusiasts are understandably miffed by all the hybrid attention. “If not for the ZEV mandate, we would never have seen today’s hybrids!” “Hybrids are a conspiracy to keep us using gasoline!” “You want low emissions? How about no emissions at all!”
In fact, hybrid-electric vehicles (HEVs) and battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) need each other. For all its benefits, the hybrid is still a transitional technology, a bridge to full electrics. And full-electrics need battery R&D—which hybrids help motivate and finance. Then there’s cultural shift and acceptance (topics for another blog).
Whether you love HEVs or BEVs, the San Francisco Electric Vehicle Association (SFEVA) is a safe-haven, a sewing-circle, and a spearhead for progress. It’s closely affiliated with Plug-In America, the primary advocate for plug-in hybrids as well as conventional electrics. Plainly, it’s the best way to talk to people at the forefront of this movement. It’s an honor to have this exceptional EVA chapter right here in San Francisco.
Needless to say, Luscious Garage does not view hybrids and electrics in opposition, and supports the SF Electric Vehicle Association both as a commercial member and, now, by proudly hosting its monthly meetings. The first is Saturday, September 8th, from 11am-1pm.
For more information, check out the SF EVA website:
and Plug-In America:
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