PLUG OK license plate
New Plug-Ins Arrive
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CalCars celebrated the arrival of the Chevy Volt at Novato Chevrolet on December 22, 2010, with an event co-sponsored by Plug In America (PIA), the Electric Auto Association, and the North Bay, San Francisco, and Silicon Valley EAA Chapters. Speakers included Novato's Mayor, other local officials, Dave Barthmuss from GM, Andy Frank, Felix Kramer, and Ron Gremban; PIA's Marc Geller was master of ceremonies (see photo captions below).

See a 7:13 video by Chris Baldwin at Sustainability Media Drives a Victory Lap in the new Chevy Volt. See it also at Vimeo CalCars ChevyVolt 2011 (iPhone/iPad compatible). Read a full transcript of the event at New CalCars Video + Media on Volt & Leaf & Celebration

Here's an appreciation by Sherry Boschert, author of the first book entirely about PHEVs, reports in the Marin Independent Journal and BrightSide News, and a follow-up interview at Autoblog Green published an extended version of Ron's remarks: 42 years of waiting, and working, for an electric car pays off. profiled Ron at "EV Veteran Calls for Faster Shift to Plug-In Cars". An Associated Press story on the arrival of the new plug-in cars ran widely, with two photos of Felix and his Volt.

Published the same day was Felix Kramer's long article putting the arrival of mass-produced plug-in cars in the context of the larger challenges we face, suggesting we can't achieve our goals if we can't win over at least some of the oil companies. That ran originally at where it received over 120 comments. It was then picked up at two top websites about climate change: Climate Progress and Two weeks later, Felix described his record-sertting road trip in "To Tahoe and Back in My Chevy Volt" at EVWorld, with an CalCars-News. And at the end of February in "My Bittersweet Chevy Volt Moment", Ron described his experiences at the point when he finally had to put gasoline in the fuel tank after two months and 1295 miles of driving. He added much additional information in responding to comments.

On January 24, Felix picked up his family's Nissan LEAF at North Bay Nissan in Petaluma. On January 28, read the posting, "Lucky Family First to Get a Volt & a Leaf" at CalCars, and find it (with comments) at­2011/­01/­31/­lucky-family-first-to-get-a-volt-a-leaf/ or or

Raindrops on the lens don't obscure the promise of these rainbowed vehicles, Redwood City, February 2011 Full-size photo

Joshua Kramer, Felix Kramer, and Rochelle Lefkowitz in front of their Redwood City, CA home, with their two plug-in vehicles. Shown are the ninth production Chevrolet Volt, delivered December 22, 2010, and the 277th Nissan Leaf, delivered January 24,2011. With the arrival of that vehicle, In January 2011, the Kramer family became the world's first household with both of the first new mass-produced plug-in cars. (Previously, when their 2004 Prius became the eighth hybrid converted to a PHEV in 2006 Felix became the world's first consumer owner of a PHEV. They sold that vehicle, currently equipped with a Hymotion battery pack, to a plug-in vehicle fan in April 2011.) Full-size photo

Felix Kramer's Volt (the ninth off the production line) at his family's driveway, with the family's Nissan Leaf in background. Full size photo

Felix Kramer's Nissan Leaf has a conversation-starter license plate; it's charged at a home with rooftop solar energy. Full size photo

CalCars Founder Felix Kramer celebrates the unveiling of the Prius Plug-In Hybrid at the Green Drive Expo in Richmond, CA, September 17, 2011. As a reminder of how far we've come, he's holding the industry-standard "J-Plug" in his left hand, and the yellow "dongle" used by CalCars and conversion companies since the first Prius conversions in 2004. Full-size photo

Volt Mileage after 37 days. To see why we think 68 MPG lifetime MPG is great, and why it's also 114 MPG for local driving, read "Lucky Family First to Get a Volt & a Leaf". Full-size photo

Delivering the LEAF to Felix and providing a two-hour orientation were North Bay Nissan's Ron Coury, eCommerce Director, Victor Maldonaldo, Internet Sales Manager, and owner Greg Dexter, all holding the vehicle's 120-Volt portable charging cable. Full-size photo

North Bay Nissan generously allowed Felix to plug in his Chevy Volt at one of the dealership's three 240-Volt chargers while getting his orientation for the Nissan LEAF. Full-size photo

CalCars' Ron Gremban and Felix Kramer and Dr. Andy Frank, "father of the plug-in hybrid," celebrated the arrival of their Volts and the achievement of their hopes for mass-market plug-in hybrids at Novato Chevrolet on December 22, 2010. They are holding the GM cable that connects the car to any household outlet. Full-size photo

Felix Kramer's Chevy Volt (awaiting VOLT009 license plate) and the San Francisco Peninsula Coastal Range in January 2011. Full size photo

Display on Felix Kramer's Chevy Volt after a January 2011 morning of mixed highway driving. Full size photo

Felix's Volt as it backs out of the Novato Chevrolet showroom. credit: John Odom of BrightSide News

Andy Frank and Felix Kramer speak at the Novato Chevrolet event. credit: John Odom of BrightSide News

Rochelle, Lynne and Wendy, the women who believed in and supported the dreams of Felix, Ron, and Andy, joined the festivities. Full-size photo

Josh Kramer, Rochelle Lefkowitz, and Felix Kramer hold the portable charging cable for their family's new Chevy Volt. Full-size photo

Some of the movers and shakers who helped get to this moment: Plug In America Co-Founder Marc Geller (Master of Ceremonies at the event), Ron Gremban, Dave Barthmuss of GM, Andy Frank, Pat Cadam of Pat's Garage and Greengears, Felix Kramer, and Nick Rothman of Greengears. Full-size photo

Jeff Kidd, Senior Electrical Home Technician at Emard's Electric after he completed installation on December 6, 2010 of a Coulomb CT-500 Level 2 home charging system in Felix Kramer's garage -- destined to charge a Chevy Volt PHEV and a Nissan LEAF EV.

Ron Gremban's charging system is suspended over his Volt for versatile access. Full-size photo

Felix Kramer driving a Volt with GM's Volt Vehicle Line Director at TED 2010
Felix Kramer's dream starts to come true: his first drive of a Chevy Volt; GM's Volt Vehicle Line Director Tony Posawatz helped put the car through its paces at the TED2010 event in Long Beach, Feb., 9, 2010 -- which Posawatz described as the first time the vehicle was demoed to non-insider "civilians" (people outside the auto/media/advocacy communities). Full-size image.

GM and CalCars at Greengears in San Francisco, August, 2008
CalCars sponsored an August 5, 2008 briefing/demonstration/brainstorming session at Pat's Garage in San Francisco, designed to offer feedback to General Motors from PHEV and EV drivers, owners and fleet operators, focused on the successful development and commercialization of GM's Chevy Volt and Saturn Vue. Representing GM was Tony Posawatz, Vehicle Line Director, Chevrolet VOLT. Shown in photo left to right are front: CalCars' Technology Lead Ron Gremban, GM's Posawatz; rear, CalCars' Felix Kramer, Pat's Garage/GreenGears' Pat Cadam, Plug-In Supply's Robb Protheroe,'s Alec Proudfoot and Rolf Schreiber, Electric Power Research Institute's Marcus Alexander, City of San Francisco Department of the Environment's Bob Hayden, Silicon Valley Leadership Group/'s Sass Somekh, Plug In America's Marc Geller,'s Darren Overby, and CalCars' Randy Reisinger. For more on this event see calcars-news/984.html.
Full-size image.

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