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The New Model T
13Mar
2011

Henry Ford revolutionized the automotive industry with his Model T back in 1908. He claimed the customer could have a car “any color that he wanted, so long as it was black”.

It was a car designed for the masses, from the well-heeled, affluent captains of industry to the lowly assembly-line workers.  Ford’s vehicles, though made with the highest quality materials, were extremely affordable.

We have journeyed over a century away from the launch of the Model T, and as Ian Clifford indicates, we might just be “on the verge of very, very significant change, very disruptive change, sort of at a scale that we haven’t seen for a very long time.”

Model T Ford Roadster

The thought of an electric car is a bit like the concept of 3D films; the idea is old, the concept has taken off a few times and failed, but we might just be getting closer to making it happen for good.

Hybrids have been on the market for a few years now, and several companies such as Dynasty Electric Cars, Miles Electric Vehicles, Global Electric Motorcars and Clifford’s ZENN Motor Company are pushing the boundaries of electric car technology.

The fact that these cars are still not easily accessible is due not only to their currently inflated prices, but also to the electrical power overload that this whole transition implies for our current electrical supply.

Tesla Roadster, all-electric sports car, charging

The future of electric vehicles still holds a lot of uncertainty. For example, where will we charge them? Replacing gas stations with battery charging stations is always a possibility. One idea floating around is that consumers should be able to buy multiple car batteries that can actually slide in and out of their cars.

This would allow us to have back ups for whenever we run out of juice. The only thing certain is that with the rising cost of oil and the climate changes we are facing, we are indeed at a moment of change, perhaps a change that will lead us to have ‘any color–so long as it’s electric.’

Remember – in the battle to save the planet, plugging into green matters! Share your story of how you are working to reduce carbon emissions, by entering our contest, and you’ll be eligible to win a prize, including being featured on TV as our next GreenHero!

The Toronto Auto Show this past month saw the more traditional gas-guzzling machines we typically associate with car shows displayed alongside some of the world’s newest electric vehicles, showing consumers they really do have the option to go green when purchasing a new without having to sacrifice style and comfort.

From zippy two wheelers to more spacious mid-sized cars, the e-vehicle was out in full force this passed February.

Cars such as the new Fiat, the all-wheel-drive Mini and the new 100 % electric Smart showed off their sleek new looks. The Smart’s “ForTwo” has a fun interior with details such as a lime green speedometers and is totally silent when it drives.

From Ford comes “The Focus Electric” the first fuel-free rechargeable passenger car from Ford and the flagship of the company’s growing school of hybrid, plug-in hybrid and all-electric vehicles. They are scheduled to arrive in North America and Europe by late 2013. This e-car boasts an advanced lithium-ion battery engineered by Ford with help from supplier LG Chem. It has the ability to charge completely in three to four hours using a 240-volt charge station.

Other models made use of electric power in conjunction with existing, traditional fuel technologies, such as the 2012 Infinity M Hybrid. This M35h benefits from Infiniti’s V6 engine paired with a 50 kW electric motor. It can drive on electric power alone at speeds up to 100 km/h and can travel on electric propulsion for almost 2 kilometres.

Whether it is speed, sleek design or just a green way to get around, the Toronto Auto Show showed us all the electric car is the way to go.

Remember – in the battle to save the planet, plugging into green matters! Share your story of how you are working to reduce carbon emissions, by entering our contest, and you’ll be eligible to win a prize, including being featured on TV as our next GreenHero!

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