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BUSINESS
March 21, 2012 | By Jerry Hirsch, Los Angeles Times
Will higher gas prices help lift sales of electric vehicles? Lacey Plache, the chief economist for Edmunds.com, says the hurdles are still too high for widespread adoption of electric vehicles. In an analysis for automotive research firm R.L. Polk & Co., Plache says one problem is that there still isn't a lot of choice when it comes to electrics and plug-in hybrids. Although at least nine electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles are expected to become available in 2012, only the Nissan Leaf and Chevrolet Volt are widely available.
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BUSINESS
September 22, 2010 | Jerry Hirsch
Coda Automotive Inc., a startup electric-car company in Santa Monica, said Tuesday that it would start taking deposits for its four-door, five-passenger sedan this week and would begin delivering the cars in December. The automaker is pricing the car at $44,900, a sticker price above electric vehicle offerings from the much larger General Motors Co. and Nissan North America Inc. that also go on sale later this year. The Coda will be will be eligible for a $7,500 federal tax credit and $5,000 California tax rebate, which brings the price down to $32,400.
AUTOS
June 21, 2013 | By Catherine Green
Nissan Leaf drivers throughout the U.S. will be able to upgrade to the latest lithium-ion batteries through a program costing $100 a month, the automaker announced Thursday. Nissan's current policy guarantees it will fix or replace Leaf EV battery packs which fail to meet performance standards during the first five years of ownership or before 60,000 miles. Under the new program, starting early next year, drivers of the 2011, 2012 or 2013 models will be able to get a new battery installed in their vehicles.
BUSINESS
November 18, 2010 | By Tiffany Hsu, Los Angeles Times
Rival Japanese automakers Toyota Motor Co. and Honda Motor Co. unveiled prototypes of upcoming electric cars as alternative-fuel vehicles took center stage Wednesday at the start of the Los Angeles Auto Show. Amid buzz about General Motors Co.'s multibillion-dollar initial public offering, major automakers scrambled to show off their latest electric car offerings to hundreds of reporters gathered for a preview of the annual event at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The show opens to the public on Friday.
AUTOS
November 21, 2013 | By Jerry Hirsch
As the automotive test director for Consumer Reports, Jake Fisher drives hundreds of cars a year and is known as one of the toughest critics in the auto industry. The Times took a cruise with Fisher at the L.A. Auto Show on Thursday and asked what he thinks are the most important new cars to make their debuts at the show. 1: The Chevrolet Colorado mid-size pickup truck. “It really looks impressive and it is nice to see an auto company taking smaller pickup trucks seriously,” Fisher said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 17, 2012 | By Susan Carpenter, Los Angeles Times
The growing number of electric vehicle drivers in Los Angeles are behaving differently from the national norm. Not only are EV drivers in L.A. traveling farther than those in other cities, but they charge their vehicles more often at public locations and are more likely to charge at night to obtain less expensive electricity rates, according to Ecotality in San Francisco. Ecotality oversees the EV Project, a $230-million deployment of electric-vehicle charging infrastructure funded in part by the U.S. Department of Energy to aid the rollout of electric vehicles and conduct research.
AUTOS
April 24, 2013 | By Ronald D. White
Chevrolet says it has earned bragging rights as the car company with the most efficient electric vehicle. The automaker says that the 2014 Spark, which is set to go on sale this summer in California and Oregon, has an EPA estimated range of of 82 miles when fully charged and an estimated combined city/highway 119 mpge. Mpge stands for miles per gallon gasoline equivalent. PHOTOS: Kelley Blue Book's top 10 'green' cars for 2013 Chevy said the subcompact car will save an average of $9,000 over the next five years, compared with other new vehicles.
BUSINESS
January 14, 2011 | By Tiffany Hsu, Los Angeles Times
Californians may end up paying the highest electricity rates in the country to charge their electric vehicles, a new study says. The state's tiered rate system, in which customers are charged higher rates as they use more electricity, could make plug-in hybrid and battery-powered vehicles more costly to own, according to a Purdue University study. The study was unveiled as the first of the electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles are reaching consumers. Two vehicles, the all-electric Nissan Leaf and the plug-in hybrid Chevrolet Volt, started being delivered to their first customers last month.
NEWS
October 9, 2012 | By Dan Turner
Last Friday, I set out to write a blog post that would answer the question, "With gasoline prices spiking, are electric cars really a good deal?" I learned two things from this exercise. First, doing a cost/benefit analysis comparing vehicles is trickier than it seems, thanks to differing government incentive programs that can radically alter the cost equation. Second, readers are really, really passionate about this topic. After having been informed, repeatedly and in no uncertain terms, about my many failings on that post, I've decided to start over -- hopefully screw-up free this time, and with a new comparison among "green" cars.
BUSINESS
August 28, 2011 | By Jerry Hirsch, Los Angeles Times
Electric cars are back. Popular in early automotive history, electrics quickly got smoked by their internal combustion-driven cousins. But in this age of volatile gas prices and climate worries, these clean, quiet vehicles are winning new fans. Advances in technology have improved their range and power. Companies are rolling them out in every flavor. Need a small SUV? Take a look at the Toyota RAV4 electric hitting the market next year. How about a luxury sedan? There's the Fisker Karma plug-in hybrid, which the automaker compares to a Maserati Quattroporte but with better mileage and lower emissions than a Toyota Prius.
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