Dec 23, 2010 (From the CalCars-News archive)
Ron and I both are feeling this amazing moment -- and comparing notes, we agree it feels unreal that we are actually driving real production plug-in vehicles. Ron feels it's the most advanced vehicle he's ever seen. Even without signs on the cars, people notice them and are giving us thumbs up on the highways (as happened when there were only a handful of hybrids on the road) Our son was trailed by a highway patrolman who wanted to talk about the car. Andy Frank says it's "exactly as I had anticipated it would operate. It's like driving my dream." See below for links to media and photos of our celebration; amazing uptake on our Victory essay, and some new good news from GM. Enjoy your holidays!
A local report about our fun event http://www.marinij.com/marinnews/ci_16923309 (with such short notice, we didn't get any national media), but ace cinematographer Chris Baldwin will be putting together some video).
A few photos, including one with Dave Barthmuss of GM http://www.flickr.com/photos/56727147@N00/sets/72157625656383506
Felix's long piece about it putting plug-in cars in the context of the large challenges we face. It ran at GM-Volt.com http://gm-volt.com/2010/12/22/calcars-plug-in-campaign-victory-after-8-years and garnered thousands of page views and over 140 comments in a day, including:
57. jpk Says Dec 22nd, 2010 (11:44 am) : I first learned about PHEV's from CalCars.org, and I've been working on getting my hands on one ever since. It's amazing to think that my family is just weeks away from the delivery of our Volt. Thank you, thank you, thank you to Felix Kramer and everyone at CalCars.org for your tireless work in advocating PHEV's all these years. We'll be leaving behind a better world for our kids thanks to all that you've done! jpk(Quote) (Reply)
The piece was picked up at Climate Progress http://climateprogress.org/2010/12/22/calcars-plug-in-hybrid-electric-car-phev/ . At that page, Bill McKibben, author of numerous influential books on the environment and climate, from "The End of Nature" to "Hope, Human and Wild," and most recently, "Eaarth: Making a Life on a Tough New Planet," and founder of 350.org, said, "If there was a Nobel Prize for Persistence (and there probably should be), it would go to Felix!"
The piece is currently on the home page of 350.org, the organization McKibben co-founded, and will soon be at http://www.350.org/en/about/blogs/after-years-persistent-activism-electric-victory . "After years of persistent activism, an electric victory" begins:
One of the very first allies we made when we began this work was Felix Kramer, in the American state of California. He was pressing for what once seemed like a science-fiction daydream: that we'd have plug-in hybrid vehicles. He started converting cars in a garage, got together a bunch of like-minded auto buffs for parades and demonstrations--and in the end he won. GM, America's biggest car company, is now producing plug-in hybrids for sale; here's Felix's account of the day he took his home from the dealer!
At Plug In America's blog, Sherry Boschert, author of "Plug-In Hybrids: the Cars That Will Recharge America," http://www.pluginamerica.org/drivers-seat/historic-calcars-prof-frank-get-plug-hybrid-chevy-volt, ended a posting,
The point is that Prof. Frank, Kramer, and Gremban helped propel a huge change in the auto industry that will benefit our national security, the environment, and consumer pocketbooks. Our work isn't finished -- Plug In America and CalCars and our other allies have got a lot of educating of the public left to do, and working for plug-in friendly policies, and more. But as these three pioneers take the keys to their new Volts, it's a moment to celebrate.
Finally, great news from GM's CEO Dan Akerson: GM Planning to Triple or Quadruple Electric Car Volumes by 2015, LG Chem Says Batteries Not a Constraint" http://gm-volt.com/2010/12/23/gm-planning-to-triple-or-quadruple-electric-car-volumes-by-2015-lg-chem-says-batteries-not-a-constraint/