Wednesday, November 15, 2006

GM to Launch?

GM Concept Car
There has been a rumor that General Motors might have a plug-in to show at the North American International Car Show in Detroit this coming January.

Here is the first confirmation that it is no longer a rumor.

GM likely to launch new plug-in hybrid
Nov 10, 2006

DETROIT (Reuters) - General Motors Corp. will likely unveil a prototype plug-in hybrid at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit in January, a local paper reported on Friday.

The advanced technology vehicle would have an extended driving range on battery power and would also have a diesel or gasoline engine that could power the car when the battery was low, the Detroit News said, citing unnamed GM officials.

Plug-in hybrids are gas-electric vehicles that can recharge their batteries with an extension cord and a normal wall outlet.

GM, which is trying to recover from a $10.6 billion loss in 2005 and stop a slide in U.S. market share, has been criticized for relying heavily on gas-guzzling sport utility vehicles. This year, it has also drawn sharp criticism for its decision to kill its EV1 electric car program.


In an interview with Motor Trend published in July, GM Chief Executive Rick Wagoner said killing the $1 billion EV1 program was his worst decision. He said it did not affect the automaker's profitability, but did hurt its image.

The Detroit News said Wagoner will talk about GM's emphasis on advanced technologies in a speech he plans to deliver at the Los Angeles Auto Show later this month.

Other automakers are also researching plug-in technology, including Toyota Motor Corp the world's leading producer of hybrid vehicles.

Honda Motor Co. Ltd. has also called for exploring plug-ins and is conducting advanced research on hydrogen.

Ford Motor Co. has a fleet of hybrid hydrogen fuel cell vehicles as part of "real world testing of fuel cell technology."

We will look forward to an unveiling in Janurary.

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