If you're a fan of alternative energy and specifically electric vehicles you no doubt have a love-hate relationship with all of the features on the latest and greatest breakthroughs in EV technology. Every month, it seems, there is an article or press release with promises of an EV future just out of reach. A new car is forthcoming, in prototype...a revolutionary, improved battery technology has been discovered in the lab that will allow x number of many miles more than now at much cheaper prices.
We've certainly seen the hype and, here at Prognog, we may even be a little guilty of spreading the news. And why not? There's certainly nothing wrong with seeing what companies are working on or researchers are discovering.
The key, of course, is recognizing vaporware for the real thing. From being able to distinguish a realistic product from something that will never see the light of day. We covered the futuristic-looking Aptera for quite awhile, hoping it would finally hit production...only to be disappointed once again when it failed to materialize.
Certain technologies are just not ready for prime time. They are simply too good to be true at this point, even if they do offer us a nice glimpse into a future possiblity.
On the other hand, there are companies, notably large auto manufacturers, that are producing electric vehicles with no real intent to produce in any kind of large numbers. Call them "compliance cars," if you'd like.
In fact, Green Car Reports has done just that in a nice feature article enumerating the different car companies that have actually produce a viable model (ie Nissan, Mitsubishi, Coda, etc.) and those that are just making cars that are "only built to meet California regulations for zero-emission vehicles--which is why they're called "compliance cars."
This is an important difference to note--that is pointing out those cars that are not really produced with any proper intent. When consumers, especially those leery of electric vehicles to begin with, see low-quality cars quickly thrown together with nearly non-existent sales, their skepticism is only reaffirmed and amplified. Ultimately, these compliance cars do a great disservice to the future of electric vehicle production.