Politics from the Palouse to Puget Sound

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

It IS easy being green

Wal Mart to sell electric cars

It's kind of a joke to say Wal-Mart sells everything. Does Wal-Mart sell electric cars? Well, this Christmas... they do sell electric cars! Sam's Club, a unit of Wal-Mart stores Inc, will sell an electric car in a Christmas promotion November 8 through December 29. The car is the Mercedes-Benz Smart and it's actually on Sam's Club front page right now below a pre-order of Guitar Hero.

For the low, low price of $35,000 you also get lithium-ion batteries from Hybrid Technologies, bringing the car's range to over 100 miles per charge. That bouncy, yellow, happy face is not done with you yet: Along with being the only owner of the Hybrid Technology's Smart, you also get a trip to the Kennedy Space Center! The Sam's Club site says this is a Once-in-a-Lifetime offer "you won't get a second chance at."


Satanic Mechanic said...

As a person who has built hybrids and E.V.'s, owns one and use to drive one (have to replace the batts), that is way too much money for that. I could convert an existing car for half that amount.
As for the range of this E.V. ... that is a little deceptive. I know Lithium Ion (Li-Ion for short) batteries have a higher energy density than regular lead acid and gell batteries, but 100 miles is misleading. Is it 100 miles at highway speeds or city speeds (25-35mph)? I too could get a 100 mile range out of my old gell cells so long as the speed was under 20 mph. It all depends on how much current you draw vs. the capacity of the batteries. It is called the Peukert equation
Cp = I^p * T
Cp = Capacity in A-Hrs
I = Current (discharge)
p = Peukert exponent
T = Time in hours

Satanic Mechanic said...

If you guys are interested in electric vehicles, another guy and I are trying to get a group together here in the Pullman to show how to convert regular cars into electric cars.

Bruce Heimbigner said...

The best thing about an electric car is WSU is required to pay for your electricity use. Even though there is no way this could be called de minimus use. The State of Washington says you can plug your electric car in State electrical outlets. That is a big untaxed benefit.