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Grant Gerke writes about manufacturing, factory and plant automation, packaging, electric cars and renewables for business and consumer media sites.

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Monday
May182015

Battery Storage Mindshift Belongs to Tesla Energy 

>> Find more posts on EVs and Tesla Motors by Grant Gerke @ Teslarati.com. Twitter: @autogrant

Below is part of my recent analysis on Teslarati.com on the potential upside with Tesla Energy's products. Find more articles on recent Tesla developments from me and others at Teslarati.com:

Most home owners aren’t looking to move off the grid, yet, charging with clean energy seems to be the biggest driving factor. (Photo Credit: Grant Gerke)5/8/2015 | It’s been interesting to read and watch how corporate media, industry experts and financial analysts digest Tesla Energy’s battery storage solutions over the last seven days. Numerous media outlets are poking at Tesla’s business premise of a 7 and 10 kWH residential battery packs for your home, as they should be. Here's a very even-handed take by Dan Steigert, an energy professional, on the 7 kWh daily battery:

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Apr092015

Video | Tesla Model S 85D Flatbed Delivery

>> Find more posts on EVs and Tesla Motors by Grant Gerke @ Teslarati.com. Twitter: @autogrant

I've never seen an actual video of a Model S85D flatbed delivery and this is pretty interesting on a couple of different fronts. One, it looks like the location is nowhere near a service center, maybe Utah, and that's my guess why Al Van der Beek didn't receive driver orientation.

Secondly, they deliver a car with only 17 miles of charge? That's so wrong on so many levels, what if he had a long drive and the electric beast needs to be driven immediately without waiting for a charge.

To me, this points to the all the Click to read more ...

Monday
Mar232015

Model X Test Drive on I-485, near Palo Alto

>> Find more posts on EVs and Tesla Motors by Grant Gerke @ Teslarati.com. Twitter: @autogrant

This short, highway video shows a Model X test drive in sunny northern California and it looks more polished compared to the "black" Model X images from about six weeks ago. (Found here @ TMC, Yobigd20).

However, there's still quite a bit of the car "masked" out. Looking a the back end, the tail lights appear to be covered to some degree and, of course, the back window. Some commenters have pointed out the gap between with the falcon wing doors in previous pictures and there does seem to be a noticeable gap, compared to previous Model X demo models and showroom vehicles.

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Feb012015

Recent Content | BMW Branding Takes Aim at the Model X and Tesla Motors

Here's a recent article excerpt, "Ladies in the House, Model X or BMW i3?," from Teslarati about how a lengthy delay could allow the i3 or possibly the X5 PHEV vehicle to make gobble up alternative vehicle dollars:

If history is any indicator, Tesla will devote most of its immediate resources to getting the Model X roll out right and Musk has promised a steeper production ramp for the model due to thousands of reservation holders.

Delays aren't good for Tesla (and Model III development), however it may be a boon for a diminutive car called the i3 from BMW and provide another choice for the female car consumers in the all-electric car market in 2015.

Click to read more ...

Sunday
Feb012015

Energy Gang Podcast | Residential Solar Financing is Getting Easier

January is moving and I'm trying to catch up on Energy Gang podcasts as we receive 10 inches of snow here in the Midwest.

Recent surveys suggest that EV owners are very receptive to solar and a natural partnership to develop energy security for our nation and keep emissions lower. Anyway, in this episode, Stephen Lacey, Jiggar Shaw and Sungage Financial CEO, Sarah Ross, gtalk about residential financing for solar panels. The cost of owning or leasing solar panels for residential dropped 60% since 2008.

Click to read more ...

Monday
Jan262015

Does BMW's i3 Super Bowl Commercial Hit the Right Target? 

Interesting responses to BMW's new i3 Super Bowl commercial to debut officially (above) on Sunday and ultimately looking to reach a larger audience with minimal knowledge on electric vehicle drivetrain technology.

I posted the commercial to the BMW i3 Facebook group early this week and it's been about 50/50, pro and against, with many followers wanting more "performance" and EV technology to be provided in the commercial. That contingent is pushing for more of a showcase for EV technology.

One commenter says:

"Very happy to see BMW using the largest media platform in the US to sell the i3, but very sad to see them do it with such a lame commercial. At best this says it's a car for clueless people. What a waste of time and money."

The commercial shows how Bryant Gumbel and Katie Couric were "clueless" about the internet back in 1994 via the Today show and then the commercial moves them to a i3 and discussing this new technology with the same no-clue approach while riding in the EV. As my wife would say, it's cute.

One member of the BMW i3 group says:

'If this is a real BMW, they should sell it the same way they sell real BMWs."

Click to read more ...

Monday
Jan262015

Podcast | Energy Gang Discusses Oil Prices and Ramifications for Cleantech

Are lower oil prices going to sour adoption of electric vehicles in the short-term? Probably, yes.

However, the solar adoptiong angle is fascinating as it pertains to electric vehicle owners and their desire to own solar panels and be the source of fuel for their cars (just received a PlugInsights survey on this very issue).

The podcast provides great context from the usual suspects and Michael Levi, a senior fellow for energy and environment at the Council on Foreign Relations, joins to talk about OPEC, the resiliency of America’s unconventional oil & gas sector, low prices on consumers, and renewable energy sectors.

>> This article has been updated (12 EST)

Saw this from Nissan's chief, Carlos Ghosn via Davos 2015 @therealautoblog:

"I don't think it is going to be slowing down," he said. "The people who are buying mainly for economic reasons may be deterred from it, but you have plenty of consumers buying EV for other reasons. On top of this, even though the price of oil is unpredictable – nobody has predicted last year that we would be at this level of oil price today and nobody knows where oil price will be next year or two years down the road – but what is predictable is that the regulation on emissions is going to get tougher in the various markets where we are present. So, our EV strategy is here not only to face too much dependence on oil or the cost of oil, but also to allow us to meet the very stringent regulations on emissions that are happening and will be happening in the future.