An Update From the CEO
So far, the year 2012 has been a mixed bag for the plug-in market. On the downside, we’ve seen the downfall of Aptera, Bright Automotive and Think, while battery companies A123 and Enerdel declared bankruptcy. Sales of the Nissan Leaf have fallen off the cliff. There is even talk of ending government subsidies.
On the upside, sales of plug-ins through September are up 178% to 31,113 compared to 2011 with the Chevy Volt leading the pack. The car reviews of the Tesla Model S from mass media and car magazines have been outstanding. Something I can personally attest to having recently driven a Model S. I was thoroughly impressed; driving it was like being in a science fiction movie. When you consider that the performance model ran neck and neck with a new BMW M5 in a recent 0-100 MPH test and that it…
News Coverage of Our Wind Tunnel Testing
Apologies for the lack of updates lately, but we've been keeping very busy. As the latest press coverage in the news section indicates, we've recently been awarded a grant by the University of Maryland MIPS program (read more about MIPS here) for $135,000 that will help fund our aerodynamics testing, which has already begun at the University of Maryland. We're excited about the progress we've made and we hope you'll check back here, or sign up for our e-news by entering your name and email address in fields to the left of this page.
Saul to Participate in SAE International Webcast
Andrew Saul, Founder and CEO of Genovation, will participate in SAE International's upcoming Webcast on 9.28.2011. The Webcast, entitled "Global 24/7 Engineering: Tools and Techniques for Better, Faster Vehicle Development," will focus on techniques to get automotive products to market quickly. The abstract of the program is as follows:
As consumer demand for innovation, quality, and appealing design continues to increase, so too does the pressure to reduce cost and get products to market more quickly. Software tools now play an important role in the effort to accelerate product development and enhance collaboration among engineers, designers, and analysts. By enabling collaboration across complex engineering functions and throughout the global supply chain, previous barriers between engineering functions and other disciplines of the product life cycle have been broken and product quality, cost efficiency, and time to market have greatly improved. Panelists in this…
More on the G2’s Aerodynamics
One of the biggest factors related to automobile efficiency is air resistance. Typically, around 60% of the power required to cruise at highway speeds is used to overcome aerodynamic drag. This percentage increases significantly the faster you go, however low aerodynamic drag will increase energy efficiency at all operating speeds. With this in mind, Genovation placed a large emphasis on streamlining the G2’s shape.
Automotive aerodynamics are also critically important for safety reasons, most notably to eliminate lift and increase downforce to prevent a car from becoming airborne. It is important to study a vehicles aerodynamic stability from many different angles, so that should the car ever spin out, experience turbulence from another vehicle or severe cross winds, it will still not generate any lift. Great care was taken to design the G2 with a healthy amount of downforce and aerodynamic stability.
Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) analysis…
Rationale for the Demand for Plug In Vehicles
Currently, Chevy, Nissan, Tesla and Fisker are in the enviable position of selling every plug-in car they make before it even reaches the dealership. Dealerships carry no inventory of plug-in vehicles and many don't even have demo vehicles. There are some Leaf buyers who placed their deposits almost a year ago and are still waiting and the wait for a Chevy Volt or a Tesla is around six months, demonstrating a very high demand-to-supply ratio that currently exists for plug-in vehicles. As Chevy and Nissan crank up production going forward and as new competitors enter the market this ratio will definitely drop but by how much depends on many factors, including the price of oil.
Why is the demand for plug-in cars so high other that the obvious environmental concerns? One reason is their low operating cost. A plug-in can cover around 4 miles per Kilowatt Hour (kWh)…