New Green Jack New Green Jack

79 responses to “The Wind Car (4 of 6) – Time for a name”

    • Damon Hart-Davis

      Does it have to be so relentlessly masculine? Some of us don’t feel the need to compensate for inadequacies in the trouser department by giving aggressive names to our vehicles!

      Zephir/Breeze/Gossamer/Arrow/Mercury/JetStream/Stream/…

      Rgds

      Damon

    • Damon Hart-Davis

      PS. Not suggesting that that was *your* motivation, BTW!

    • Vicki Bristow

      ‘Blade Runner’ would be great, just don’t think you’ll get the copyright for it. Good luck with it all Dale, glad to see new and exciting things coming out of Ecotricity having been there near the beginning.

    • Russ

      what about ‘Silver Lining’

    • Russ

      and maybe “Blue Bolt”

    • David hicks

      How about “Eco” even sounds a bit Italian.

    • Jeffrey Lam

      Part of me says go for the short, punchy (and therefore memorable) one: Storm.

      I think what Ford did with the name Mondeo was take the Italian word for “world” (mondo) and modify it slightly (probably so they could copyright it, which you can’t do with actual words): supposedly the Mondeo was a “world” car. Or Fiat just take Italian words as they are (Point, Style, Type, One, Five Hundred).

      So maybe you should try out some foreign words and see how they sound. I don’t know what the Italian word for “storm” is…

    • Igor Kolar

      when I saw it I was gonna suggest Aeolus, but something tells me either Opel/Vauxhal, or VW have the copyrights on it. Zero sounds most neutral to me, which is what it should perhaps be. The rest feel too biased somehow, and unnecessarily aggressive/hostile, but again, that’s just me ^^ Looks stunningly beautiful from the production shots =)

    • ben keene

      wind in another language – perhaps find historical connection to when wind energy origintated:

      viento (spanish)
      vento (italian)

      or perhaps some indigenous tribal languages for the wind:

      pepo (swahili)
      moya (sesothan)

      or think more about what wind is – spirit, breath, freedom

      poject looks awesome dale

    • Justin Noe

      The “Zero” sounds good but as with “Nemisis” perhaps the cogitation of an eco-war against others can seem a little strong.
      I really like storm though it sounds like a car I’d want to drive.
      Good luck with it all. I vote Dale Vince for the environment minister!

    • Igor Kolar

      uuuu Moya sounds nice ! Soothing, like what driving an electric car should be like … >.> not that I’d know, or will, for some time probably…
      but, it sounds nice =) I vote for Moya =)

    • Derek Thomas

      Dale

      I would go with “Zero” for the name. I notice on the video there is a “Z” badge on the front of the car already.

      Merry Christmas to you and your team and I look forward to seeing the finished car in the new year.

      Derek

    • Karl

      “The Stig” – now that would cause a stir!

      “Eco Traction”

    • Chris

      Great vid. Not so sure about Nemesis, I’m guessing most people will not interpret the name the way you have intended it. They will probably just think it’s a cool sounding name!

      Storm & Zero are a little more obvious in their meaning. How about..the or ‘whydidtheEV1getcrushedGMwewantedthatcaryabastards’ Ok it’s not very punchy, but it has a ring to it and there’s no mistaking the intentions. I think it’ll catch on!

    • Dane Hammond

      Dale,

      We’ve had ZC on our blog links for months now and since we are a car site about “Green Automotive” we’ve had a running series on the new car along with the YouTube videos…let me know when part 4 goes up so we can place it on our blog at http://carloanasap.wordpress.com.
      I can’t wait for the body to be finished and the paint. We’re running a photo of the work in progress right now just to wet the readers appetite.

    • Matt

      Zero makes the most sense to me!

    • Derek Thomas

      A system has been developed in Israel to produce electricity from the road surface. Piezo electric crystals in the road surface produce electricity when squeezed by vehicles passing over.

      I guess this could help power the electric cars.

      More information on the ETA website.

      Derek

    • Jeffrey Lam

      I just saw the Tesla on Top Gear this week. I hope your car has/will have better weight distribution than theirs. But if you’re working with Lotus, then I think you’re in good hands, as driving dynamics is their thing.

      The straight line speed was impressive though.

      The fingerprint recognition sounded cool. Part of me says shame you couldn’t get it in, part of me says was it really necessary? Obviously not, as it’s not in…

      As for names, I think I still prefer “Storm”, though I like vento/viento. I was also thinking of single letters: “Z” is already taken, what about “E” for electric/eco, or is it too close to Jaguar’s E-type? Or whatabout “ZC”?

    • Jeffrey Lam

      oops, I’ve just read Dale’s reply about the weight distribution in the other post!

    • adi

      Could you tag on this technology – like the Honda (Hydrogen fed) Clarity of top gear – see below on wind powered electrics via hydrogen tech:

      It depends on how you make it (hydrogen). Until recently, the most inexpensive production method was using steam reformation of natural gas (heating methane under high pressure with a catalyst in a steam atmosphere). When the cost of natural gas was about $2 per MMBtu (Million Btu) hydrogen was produced for as little as US $0.96 per kilogram, at the production plant. In 2005, the cost of natural gas rose above $13 per MMBtu, with the cost of hydrogen rising proportionally. Other methods, such as electrically breaking water (H2O) into hydrogen and oxygen (electrolysis), chemical reactions, and biomass digestion vary in their prices. Hydrogen produced from wind farm electricity is now the cheapest way to produce hydrogen. There are many ways to produce hydrogen, and they will become more competitive in the future. See the California Fuel Cell Partnership map for hydrogen fueling stations in California.

    • David hicks

      When will people realize that Hydrogen cars are just
      a way of diverting away from the production of battery electric cars.

      Hydrogen cars are so complex that the car industry could just
      be telling us that they have it in development for for the next 50 years.
      They are happy selling us ICE engine cars that always need servicing and have loads of spare parts.
      Hydrogen cars are a way to extend our addiction to oil.

      Electric cars have very few parts and are simple.
      Over the past 10 years battery technology has improved
      so much. The only thing holding back electric cars is the car makers themselves
      roll on the battery electric car.

    • adi

      Hi David,

      I have gone down the electric vehicle path years back – a mate improved my taxi to go 70mph but range was an issue on lead acid batteries. (seehttp://www.evuk.co.uk/news/art1.html – see feb 200 – I got the first electric taxi powered by renewables on the road).

      Trouble is a. the recharge time and b. the cost and limited life of the batteries. Another point is that given the limited life of batteries and the environmental cost in making them , resources are limited whereas with hydrogen, they are not (if scaled up for all world to use).

      In Iceland I visited a hydrogen filling station in 2006 where they were pioneering the technology on buses and using renewable energy (geothermal) to get the hydrogen (in theory). In 2000 at the Millenium dome display for all to see, Ford promised to have a fuel cell car off the shelf- for sale by 2010. At that point I sighed a huge sigh of relief that the big boys were onto it and it wasn’t left to individual efforts to push the alternatives forwards.. so I sold my electric at that point and went onto biodiesel (sustainably sourced of course) instead. My point is this that electric vehicles made on mass with the range and speed to work commercially are too expensive whilst hydrogen cars (currently available in California at a lease of $600/month) do the same range and performance but when “on mass” will be cheaper per unit and not be limited by 1. Battery life and 2. Limited resources for those special batteries – if multiplied to the whole world.

      Whilst Dales car is great and a good advert for ecotricity – it is inaccessible to the general public and would cost more (financially and economically) on mass than hydrogen on mass. I agree with you that the big companies are stalling on electric vehicles – hell if they were serious the Prius would have had a plug in option right from the start whereas actually it pollutes more than a diesel polo!

      Anyway The big companies are stalling on EVs and Hydrogen – thats the truth of it – and either would be good but hydrogen has the long term solution for the whole world as it can be seperated from oxygen using renewable energy and save the economy at the same time (thats why Iceland was used as a pilot study for this 3 way approach.

      Hydrogen is basically an electric car anyhow.. but the car m,anufacturers who hold hands with the oil boys need governments to make that solution more profitable for them. Lets Copenhagen 2009 achieves that, then we are away as I believe its not about 50 years of research but that they have the plans to go for it as soon as the economic climate is favourable.

      Adrian

    • David hicks

      We should not assume that battery technology will remain static

      As a cameraman I notice that 10 years ago we needed 10 to 15 batteries to do a days filming and we would need to constantly recharge these in rotation.

      Now when I go filming only need 2 or 3 batteries for the whole day.
      In the future battery technology will be much better.
      But as you say the oil companies are holding hands with the car companies.
      We need people like Dale making there own cars to shame the car companies into moving away from oil.
      I suspect Dale will prove that it does not take decades to make a electric car
      It only takes a few months with the right people.

    • Dan R

      VIENTO

      I like the name

      VIENTO

      Spanish for “wind”. I think it sounds great in English, too. It evokes images of Lamborghinis. It’s sexy, meaningful, and at the same time, not excessively macho.

      So that’s my vote.

      VIENTO

    • Willy Bio

      Storm: forget it, everyone associates that with Blackberry now.

      Nemesis: 15 year old boys will like it.

      Zero: come on, you kidding me?

      Stay well clear of anything “eco” or reeking of greenie happy crap. The term “green” was just banned anyway. 🙂

      I suggest “Zephram” after Zephram Cochrane, inventor of the Warp Drive. Definitely one-up’s Tesla.

    • bryan

      Since it is a wind car I agree with the suggestion of a wind name, my preferences first:
      Squamish Monsoon Chinook Libeccio Foehn Simoom Boreas Cyclone Typhoon Aeolus Zephyros Tramontane Gilavar Anemoi fén-fēng Vendavel Mistral Abroholos Alize Bora Calima Etesian Notos Harmattan Bayamo Halny Khazri Kona Košava Amihan Marin santa-ana Ostro Pampero Papagayo Tehuano

      Maestro Euros Kamakazi
      Sirocco Passat
      Khamsin Zonda

    • Jim Wolfe

      Zap.

    • Chris

      It may sound like an odd suggestion, but it could be worth checking out the Aygo/Citroen C1/Peugeot 107 (essentially the same). I drive one and they’re genius little cars, designed from head to toe for weight saving and efficiency. I don’t know much about the engine other than it’s a 3 cylinder, 1 litre, but with regards to the interior. There’s a clock radio, instead of a clock and seperate radio. There’s a minimum number of switches, dials & electronics. The air vents are rotatory, without slides or boxing. There’s also no door mechanism on the glove box. It’s like a downmarket version of Apple mac minimalism and as a result actually (for once) achieves close to it’s official mpg figures. I know you’re not making a ‘noddy car’, but if you want to combine maximum efficiency with power, could be worth a quick look 🙂

    • Dave

      On the electric vs hydrogen debate, take a look at MacKay’s blog post here: http://withouthotair.blogspot.com/2008/12/fcx-clarity-from-honda.html

      This was also written off the back of the recent top gear episode. Check out the comments – I’ve written one which rather than repeat here it is easier to direct you to the other site!

      I’m doing engineering research – I think the battery issue and the recharging time issue can be solved (certainly much easier than drilling for oil or developing a hydrogen economy!). Hydrogen is largely a red herring. [Incidentally- so are biofuels and combined and heat power. Look at MacKay’s book http://www.withouthotair.com – Bring on the electric vehicles and heat pumps!! :-_ ]

    • David hicks

      Thanks Dave
      for adding the evidence to prove that Hydrogen cars need more energy to produce the Hydrogen than electric cars need to charge the batteries.

      I fear the oil companies are trying to kill the electric car again.
      They are currently busy buying up the companies that make the parts.

      Last time the oil companies bought the battery companies
      This time the company that makes the in wheel motors for the Lighting has been bought by a oil company.

      No parts equals no electric car.
      With the oil price so low we have a real fight on our hands.
      The only hope for the electric would be a conflict in the middle east and high oil prices.
      And no one wants that to happen.

      David Hicks

    • Adi

      I think some of you are being a bit short sighted about the hydrogen economy.

      Its not dissimilar to the German Grun Punkt system analogy: a recycling scheme which chops everything up and divides the raw secondry material by density to create a saleable secondry material for industry to use again. The criticism with that system was that it used so much energy to chop all recyclable materials up that it’s net carbon benefit was negligable (using fossilfuel based energy). The long term plan of course is that as the energy which powers the chopping is replaced by renewables (helped by Poznan meeting last month) then of course the life cycle becomes greener and stuff still gets recycled really well. So it is for hydrogen. This is all about stepping stones or stages of “transition”. The transition uses fossil fuel based hydrogen as a source, the long term uses a limitless element (hydrogen in water) which is extracted using renewable energy. This is especially brilliant when you consider the variable nature of supply of wind power (and most renewables) which can achieve a “storable” renewable energy..i.e.hydrogen. In other words variable supply renewables can create a flexible storable harmless fuel source, brilliant. I agree that the car companies are an obstacle but they will be until it pays profits for them – we as a society chose capitalism after all – so only when we regulate it (through Copenhagen 2009 type efforts) to make hydrogen (or battery powered cars) relatively cheaper, will the car companies go for it.

      Lets be realistic here, the only way the world will prevent capping at a 2C rise is if the big players are behind it – given the short time we have, so we need them to profit from hydrogen (or electric cars). I just think that all the elements and materials used in battery generation will have a huge environmental cost if scaled up globally. So therefore hydrogen – once given the economies of scale could cause less damage in the long run I must stress that again – further down the tranistion path.

      Adi

    • Dave

      David, thanks for the reply. Interesting stuff. I don’t know a whole lot about big oil trying to kill off electric cars, but I’m sure there’s some truth in it, although a fairly balanced review of the film ‘who killed the electric car’ can be found here: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2008/01/01/woudhuysen_electric_car/

      I suspect that like any innovation it is difficult for it to get off the ground at first (chicken and egg situation) but I feel as though right now the atmosphere is different and that certainly in Europe, politicians and the general public are perhaps more ready for electric vehicles – with plug in hybrids a step along the way.

      Also from an engineering point of view the enabling technology has *greatly* improved in 30 years, for example (1) rare earth permanent magnets such as Neodymium Boron Iron were only discovered in the 1980s, enabling powerful and efficient drive motors (2) computing power per chip has greatly improved, enabling mathematically complex control algorithms for power electronics and motors (the Tesla Roadster with its induction machine+drive is a good example of a very impressive motor control system that – at a guess – probably would not have been possible until about 10 years ago because of the computing power involved) (3) power electronics have greatly improved [but, still some way to go perhaps] (4) batteries have improved hugely – driven by the laptop and mobile phone industries [but still a way to go].

      I don’t know why PML Flightlink (who make the HiPa drive) are in administration, but there are plenty of other suitable motors out there, from good permanent magnet machines to induction machines. I would say the main interesting avenues of scientific research for EVs now are (a) improving the reliability, durability and energy density of batteries and (b) improving the reliability, durability and power density of power electronics. And of course, integrating all this with the vehicle dynamics, structural design, safety and so on.

      Dave

    • Chris

      David, I was aware this is happening. It harks back to the war on health sciences that tobacco companies launched. It’s got to make you wonder whether ecotricity’s car will ever make it. What would you do if exxon etc offered you millions for your car or it’s parts?

    • Scott Snyder

      Another variant of the storm idea is “Lightning” which refers more closely to electric driven.

    • David hicks

      All we can do as consumers is try and reveal the truth behind big oil.
      James Dyson made a cleaner that did not need a bag.
      But none of the cleaner companies where interested.
      Why? Because all they cared about was selling bags.
      So what did he do?
      He made it himself.
      The same thing for the car industry all they care about is selling spare parts and oil.
      This is happening with electric cars sooner or later there will be to many people making electric cars and they will shame the car makers into making us what we want.
      Roll on the electric car!!

    • .

      Wind car Name?

      (A breath of) “Fresh Air”

      Adi

    • Dave

      Adi, I’m sorry to babble on about it, but I think you’re wrongly optimistic about hydrogen. Let me quote from a 2006 IEEE paper (Bossel, ‘Does a Hydrogen Economy Make Sense?’, Proceedings of the IEEE Vol 94, No 10, Oct 2006). This paper examines both the present scenario and a future ‘all renewable’ (or similar) scenario, and Bossel is an expert on fuel cells. He says: “..a hydrogen economy is extremely inefficient proposition for the distribution of electricity from renewable sources to useful electricity from fuel cells. Only about 25% of the power generated
      from wind, water, or sun is converted to practical use. If the original electricity had been directly supplied by wires, as much as 90% could have been put to service. This has two serious consequences to be considered in future
      energy strategies. A) About four renewable power plants have to be erected to deliver the output of one plant to stationary or mobile consumers via hydrogen and fuel cells. Three of these plants generate energy to cover the parasitic losses of the hydrogen economy while only one of them is producing useful energy. Can we base our energy future on such wasteful schemes? B) As energy losses will be charged to the customer,
      electricity from hydrogen fuel cells will be at least four times more expensive than electricity from the grid. Who wants to use fuel cells? Who wants to drive a hydrogen-fuel-cell car?”

      Try to get hold of the paper if you can, it’s very good.

      I’m not saying there are no problems with an ‘all electric solution’ (and you rightly point out that batteries have a way to go). But I don’t think hydrogen is the solution…

      Dave Howey

    • Dave

      sorry – slight correction – Bossel’s paper doesn’t examine the present scenario, it just looks at a future (100% renewable) hydrogen economy. But by my own calculations a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle using hydrogen produced by steam reforming natural gas has about the same gas to wheels efficiency as an electric vehicle using grid electricity from a gas fired power station. So by sticking with hydrogen we are essentially making future transport just as inefficient as the present, which is not a good thing, given that there is an alternative (all-electric)!
      D

    • Damon Hart-Davis

      Ah, now “Fresh Air” I like!

      What about variants such as “Breathe” and “Hot Breath” and “Dragon”?

      Rgds

      Damon

    • David

      Electric Dream (But Human League might take you to court). Second thoughts maybe not.

      How about Vince! You could user he other name to refer to different models and limited editions. Imagine a Fast and the Furious type scene. “Hey man, what’s your ride?” “My ride? A Vince Lightening” hehe

    • Damon Hart-Davis

      Well then of course you need some kind of variation on “Greased Lightning” or maybe “Gale Force”…

      Rgds

      Damon

    • Mark TT

      Name for the car – or a corruption of the same thing for IP and Copyright purposes – obvious maybe but memorable? It’s on everyones lips already. Also – let us not forget that Wind is not the only source of zero carbon electricity generation!

    • Mark TT

      for some reason the name didn’t appear in the post just now – – my suggestion is – CO2 – or a corruption for copyright and IP purposes – as per the above comment

    • Adi

      Hi

      Name (Breath of) Fresh Air or Breath also means 1. no exhaust fumes, 2. powered by the wind 3. “Fresh” as in “new start” to electric vehicles.

      I like the analogy to Dyson and hoover bag sales – if Dale does indeed achieve a production line to trigger all car companies to make a proper electric car, then that would be brilliant! – (otherwise you may as well save resources and drive on locally grown or recycled biofuel – the use of which is carbon neutral and does not starve the third world or chop down rainforests – as long as it is done properly/responsibly..some of us know that and are quietly driving on local sustainably sourced biofuel. Quietly because due to mass media people seem to have lost the ability to differentiate that which is sustainably sourced and that which is not).

      I digress, bring on the EV revolution if you can do it Dale. Go to production – if not, lets see it for what it is: a lot of fun and a good advert for ecotricity and I can wish you well with that.

      As regard the hydrogen economy. Yes there are inefficiencies and my view is not a popular one, but simply put I would rather drive around in a car that is powered from renewable energy in an inefficient way but affordable way than have the best efficient technology which costs loads and is inaccessible to the masses.

      Allow me to drum up another good example for why Hydrogen should still be considered an option:

      Take Geothermal as a renewable source of energy: Well, we cant get it here easily but new zealand, iceland (geologically active countries generally) can and they can convert water to hydrogen using that energy source and transport that hydrogen abroad. You may call that inefficient but, when one considers that that energy source may otherwise remain untapped and when one considers the job creation of those hydrogen plants and when one thinks of what could happen to the world if we do nothing then the innefficiency disappears as the external benefits outweigh the engineers “closed system” efficiency consideration. In other words the wider benefits could outweigh the singular approach when the situation is viewed as a whole rather than as a linear (closed system) approach.

      Regards
      Adi

    • Dave

      Dear Adi, we should perhaps continue this discussion elsewhere. Did you you read my comment at all?!

      You said: “As regard the hydrogen economy. Yes there are inefficiencies and my view is not a popular one, but simply put I would rather drive around in a car that is powered from renewable energy in an inefficient way but affordable way than have the best efficient technology which costs loads and is inaccessible to the masses.”

      This seems to be a self-contradictory point of view. Could you explain why a hydrogen fuel cell car is ‘more affordable’ than an electric car, in terms of both capital cost, and running cost? Remember (as per my earlier post): your fuel cell car will use 25% of the original renewable electricity generated, whereas my electric car will use 90% (and the capital cost will be much lower). I don’t really understand why you can say on this basis that a hydrogen fuel cell car is ‘more affordable’ (to run) than an electric car, even if they were the same cost (which they are not! EVs are cheaper…).

      Re. geothermal – yes a great source of power, where you can get it. And yes, perhaps we can generate hydrogen from geothermal and export it. I still think it’s a marginal case, once you have fully electrified both Iceland and New Zealand for all of their own energy needs.

      What point is there in creating a hydrogen infrastructure to distribute energy when we already have a very efficient energy distribution infrastructure called a power grid?

      Take a look at http://www.withouthotair.com

      Best wishes,
      Dave Howey

    • Bob Skinner

      “Zed.” An edgier Zero. zed zero zip nada.

    • Damon Hart-Davis

      Oh yes, more good ‘uns IMHO! (Though don’t ask me the number of working brand names that I’ve picked all by myself…)

      The “Nada Zip” or “Nada Vente” or “Net Zip” implying the Grid (net) used to deliver the ‘leccy, or the “Net Zero” for that and its carbon neutrality?

      Rgds

      Damon

    • Jeffrey Lam

      Having seen Gale Force and Vince Lightning, how about “Dale Force”? 🙂

    • Jeffrey Lam

      Thanks Dale. I stand corrected!

    • Alexandra Deegan

      Hello Dale… it would seem Lotus with their Tesla experience will go EV as will Porsche too… Lightening is already on the case here in the UK… but nowt real for ages yet I’d imagine.

      But as we’ve had weeks of persistent high pressure sitting atop Blighty recently… biting winter cold it is but no wind at all… oh dear?

      (Fusion via Helium3 starts to look more like the next gen saviour; peak uranium means nuclear is also temporary)

      The Venturi Fetish works for me name wise… but you’d need Monaco like weather to cope with the lack of roof… lol

      I do hope your offering will make use of Altairnano lithium wafer power… if not ouch!

      My name suggestions… as you favour the powered by wind aspect…

      1. Autan
      2. Bayamo
      3. Chamsin
      4. Dzhani
      5. Etesian
      6. Khamsin
      7. Levante
      8. Mauka
      9. Sharki
      10. Vardar

      Or if you do have to keep with that Zee theme too… Zephyr or Zephyros… Zonda’s already nabbed!

      Happy New Year to you all and good luck with it…

    • Doug

      I have to say, I’m not so interested in this body work stuff. I just want to know if you guys managed to get the drive train to work. Seems you could be driving a performance mule around and fussing with cosmetics later. If I remember correctly, your engineers had decided on a dual rear motor setup with an independent belt drive to each wheel. In this video they mention that the car will not have any traction control. But you will at least have to work out the interesting control problem of having the motors serve the function of a differential when the car makes a turn. Could you shed any light on that? Thanks. =)

    • Ian Bruce

      Hi Dale,

      As for ourselves, we went through a list of about about 400 names (including “Nemesis” and “Zero”) before finally settling on Persu.

      NEMESIS: Mazda RX-8 special edition brand. Trademark for motorcycles is owned by Norton, BTW.

      ZERO: GM had a design collaboration with architect Frank O. Gehry back in 2005. One outcome of that was the “Zero Car” The produced a full-scale working prototype with omni-directional driving ability. May not be trademarked.

      STORM: Mazda again… This time for a rather boring pick-up truck.

      Email me if I can be of any further help.

      — Ian

    • Jonathan

      What about Kaze (kAh-zey)? It’s Japanese for wind. Sounds nice off the tongue as well.

    • Matt

      Kaze sounds good but the pronounciation could be a bit dodgy, as i say it in my head it sounds worryingly like Khazy (as in toilet). Perhaps not the best message to be sending out.

    • simon mallett

      No mention of the work that is being pioneered by Guy Negre. Surely a wind (generated) should power an air (fueled) car!
      Okay the development of the Air Car is still ongoing with many challenges, but with no large scale use of batteries, fuel cells etc. it seems to be a far more sustainable solution! I hope its okay to include the url: http://www.mdi.lu/english/ Also, the technology is available for scalable energy storage.

    • Adi

      Hi Dave,

      Answer to your feedback about hydrogen vs. EVs:

      The hydrogen fuelling station I saw in Rekyavik a few years back looks great and could be duplicated around the world with potentially less environmental impact than the environmental cost of duplicating long range batteries on a global scale.

      I have no doubt that currently the use EVs are cheaper/more accessible etc than hydrogen but if one projects EVs en mass (i.e. we all use them instead of ICEs) we could have a resource problem with the battery manufacturing side which may outweigh the other obstacles which the hydrogen economy brings. This is of course based on the future scenario of Renewable energy powering the hydrogen extraction.

      Ref your question about transporting hydrogen: Hydrogen like biomass is a more storable and flexible as a fuel compared to other renewables of variable supply. (Hydrogen is therefore similar to a battery in concept – but batteries always expire whether used or not – Ive had 2 electric vehicles now so speak from a position of experience).

      So hydrogen faciltates a storage solution which enables our demand to be matched with intermiitant renewable energy supply in a way which could be less damaging than batteries – if scaled up.

      Dave I dont know if that is the case for sure because Ive not done the maths on the lifecycle impact of mining the specialist battery resources that would be required but what I’m trying to impress upon you is to not close your mind to the hydrogen solution. If you know of a study which details the CO2cost of long range batteries I’d be interested. A good independent survey may swing my thinking back towards yours.

      Regards
      Adrian

    • Dave

      Hi Adi – I agree that lifecycle analysis of all these options (H2, EV, Biomass, plug ins etc etc) is really important. Actually, I have been having this whole discussion (EV vs H2) with some colleagues too and I think as a result we’re going to try and write a paper on the subject.. it seems a good time for one! I’ll let you know (it will probably take a good few months) – Email me your email address on d.howey@imperial.ac.uk

      Dave

      ps battery technology is advancing ridiculously fast at the moment, see http://www.a123systems.com/ and http://www.altairnano.com
      I fully expect that batteries will have decent lifetimes and safety in the next 5 years or so. However, we do need to worry about lithium supply, and also battery end of life recycling.

      pps on names for the car (sorry, should have contributed earlier) how about Spark, Arc, Flux – that sort of thing?

    • Phil

      Lister used to produce a car called the Storm, so don’t know if there would be any issues on that front?

      Regarding the car itself, it all looks very interesting, but I’m left with a nagging doubt. Given the millions of cars that already exist, wouldn’t it be more efficient to develop some sort of aftermarket process for retro-fitting electric motors to our current fleet? The wind car is undoubtedly a useful headline grabber, but shouldn’t we be thinking about ways to shift the current fleet over to cleaner, more efficient methods of propulsion rather than just binning them altogether? Why are we not seeing such a sector emerging, as to my mind it would seem to make sense.

    • Simon

      Great project – but I would have been much more impressed if you had developed a 4 or 5 seater family hatchback! Tesla etc prove the EV sportscar concept – I’m sure it will be great fun to drive, but it’s hardly pushing the boundaries is it? You could even take the “economy” option and buy a Prius, rip out the internals and make it into a state of the art EV – now THAT would get peoples attention and really embarass the big manufacturers – and you’d have a queue of people wanting to buy one as well!

    • Alexandra Deegan

      Dale seems have departed this thread… abducted by aliens? But I digress….

      The fambly, macho, SUV truck market is being cracked by these guys in the US….

      http://www.phoenixmotorcars.com/index.php

      I personally had great hopes for this 3-wheeler and would have purchased one myself if it could be made real for the UK market… with say a top speed of 125mph and a 300 mile range… and less naff colours, dated wheels and a sorta geek kit feel… say more like the Smart EV’s will be. The perfect EV for the city, green-minded uber-babe…(sniggers)

      http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=Jsg_iEQzfWk&feature=related

      And (Phil — January 11, 2009 @ 12:50 am)

      I suggest you take a looksee at the wonderful Mr. Ebenhoech converted 914…

      http://www.cafeelectric.com/index.php

      This could be the way ahead for millions of cash starved, depression surviving energy depleted Brits… come 2013 when the lights start going out…. that will be the smart ones only naturally… that have converted their homes to heat producing net energy ones, selling back to the National Grid… who’ll have quit all mainstream rip-off foreign goct controlled utilities…

      Only the seriously silly will imagine a ‘normal’ consumerist, flat screen plasma future… albeit defo not if held to ransome for water, heat and daily working energy!

      (Get self-sufficient folks you know it makes purfecct ‘meow’ sense)…

      Postscript: Or perhaps Gordon McBruin will finally wake up to the Peak-Oil issue and make these on-your-every-street-corner govt mandate?

      http://dvice.com/archives/2008/11/hyperion_starts.php

    • yanza

      Dale

      The wind car vids look great, can’t wait to see the one with it on the road, is it on YouTube yet?

      As for the name, how about a funky zero
      inspired word for which the web address is not already taken, e.g. zerotricity

      yanza.com

    • leo

      hi dale..i thought about an acronym. what about taking a few tags, e.g: Ecotricity, Dale, Windpowered, Car, Lotus-based, Electric, Sport, Vehicle, etc..
      and then play around a bit (bit like those word games in the Times)..u get words like ‘e l e v’, ‘e l e c’, ‘d w e l’ etc…i m sure there are many more creative people than me better at this…
      leo

    • Jeffrey Lam

      I’ve got some more ideas!
      ufo
      flying cow
      ball lighting/lightning/lightening
      (missing) blade
      tentacle
      lights

    • Jeffrey Lam

      On a more serious note, I like leo’s suggestions. How about spelling something that sounds like letters when read out?

      e.g. ‘z e d c e e’, ‘e l v e e’, ‘e l c e e’

      Quite clever eh? It becomes a double-acronym. The only thing is thinking of something: Electric Vehicle by Ecotricity is then ‘e v e’ (pronounced ‘ee-vee’), EV also standing for Electric Vehicle. That’s the best I can do at the moment.

    • Jeffrey Lam

      Except the two acronyms are supposed to be different words, not like my example!

    • Jonny Holt

      Product naming and branding, particularly in the Car business< is a process complicated by the inconvenient fact that use of particular words or acronyms is often limited by other people who thought of using it first and who have a commercial interest in protecting what is now part of their intellectual property. Also, words sometimes do not translate well into other languages (Rover wanted to call one of their cars “Macro” until it was pointed out that “Macareau” is French for “male prostitute”).

      Having said all this, my suggestions are:

      “Vertigo” (the sensation you get from a wind turbine / French for green, then “I go”).

      “Natrix” (Latin name for a grass snake, which is green. There is a long tradition of naming sports cars after snakes – cf. AC Cobra, Dodge Viper, etc).

      Hope this helps,

      Jonny Holt

    • L. Warren

      Dale… love the whole idea… also love your politics.

      My choice for your beauty:

      “Wattson” for all sorts of reasons.

      Paul Watson (my hero)
      Unit of power
      “Elementary, Watson”
      Son of Watt as in Williamson, Johnson, evolving from..

      Would love to get involved… keep up the good work…

      Les

    • L. Warren

      repost:

      “Davince”

      Pronounce it any way you wish!

      Les

    • Tyler

      I know this is late but Clark is right. Zero is the name of an electric motorcycle here in the US and if it is already attached to a car, as GreenMotor, pointed out then it just wouldn’t be right.

      I do like Dan R’s suggestion of “Viento”. Throwing my two cents into the mix (if its even worth that) to appease Damon what about the name “Whisper”? Its probably too feminine but the Cherokee in me likes it because I like to think that the wind whispers to us (if only we would stop and listen more often).

    • Tyler

      Of course, the macho American in me likes the decided upon name of “Nemesis”. It has a down with the man kinda vibe.

    • cathy

      retro-fitting electric motors is a great idea.. what do you think?