- Advertising/Sales/Production Update
There are now 470 EV1's on the road, 33 having
been sold in July (compared to a reported 3 sold
by Honda during the same period). For the
moment, there are only about a dozen new EV1's
left in inventory, all red.
However, the production line has been fired up
and pre-production cars are rolling off the line,
with production units just about to emerge. NiMH
versions will not be produced until the end of
the year, but a few preproduction cars may be
available at the October club meeting for test
drives. While neither the lease "upgrade"
policy nor the lease price of a NiMH EV1 has
been decided, the lease is hinted to be in the
range of 25% more than the lead-acid version.
Although there is no direct impact of the recent
GM strike on EV1 design or production, in
general, budgets within GM are being trimmed. For
the EV1 program, advertising will be affected.
This currently consists of radio ads, billboards
(on buses and at bus stops), direct mailings, and
magazine advertising. For the moment magazine
advertising will be cut back, and the direct
mailing (which did not produce the hoped for
response) will be re-evaluated.
- 1999 Model Preview
Most 1999 model EV1 changes will apparently be
"under the hood".
- Colors: same as 1997 model
- The interior will have a different fabric.
- Power electronics bay has been redesigned
to use fewer components, reducing cost and
- The charging system will be capable of
handling the 50 KW "fast-charge" system,
which will soon be field tested on Chevy
- The rear end suspension has been tweaked
to reduce oscillation. This was actually
incorporated into the last of the '97 cars
(perhaps after about #600).
- NiMH battery versions of the '99 cars will
be produced at the end of 1998. It was
confirmed that battery cooling was a major
issue, and that this technical problem was
solved by using the air-conditioner to
force cool air into the battery tunnel.
Mark Selogie (an EV1 owner as well as GM
employee) briefs the club about 1999 EV1
features and fields technical questions.
- New Charger Design
Mark Selogie also briefly discussed a new
generation charger. This 6.6 KW charger will
replace both wall-mounted and pedestal mounted
chargers with a single weather-proof model, which
will have an optional pedestal.
It has a reduced parts count which should
translate into greater reliability and lower
manufacturing cost. In addition, it will be
smaller, lighter, and have a longer, but
non-retracting paddle cord. It will also NOT
have a lock.
The introduction time was not clear, but possibly
will be done at the same time the '99 EV1 models
- Charger Infrastructure Updates
Helena Hsieh (DWP) and Leilani Johnson (City of
LA Environmental Affairs Dept.) gave an update of
the Quick Charge program progress: 127 of 188
chargers have been installed.
They also reported that the next program to begin
(probably early next year) is called EV Charge.
This is a $2M program as compared to the $6M
Quick Charge program. This will be a
first come, first served appropriation for up to
50% of charger costs with the following tentative
- Filling in coverage gaps, especially along
- New developments.
- Expansion of existing sites, especially
where additional chargers can be put in
with minimal installation cost (e.g. use
- Moderate demand sites (retail, beaches, etc).
- Work sites (must be public chargers).
They also displayed some drafts of newspaper ads
designed to inform the public about EV's and EV
charging availability around Los Angeles.
Terry Brungard and Darryl Yonemine, both from
DWP also reported on the DWP's other EV projects
involving buses, trolleys and bicycles. DWP also is
running a "VIP" program designed to introduce
heads of departments in various organizations
to the practicality of electric vehicles.
Enid Joffe (Edison EV) added updates on various
other EV related issues at the state level. HOV
use for EV's and reduced auto registration fees
appear to be possibilities.
Enid also informed everyone that the first Fast
Charger will be unveiled at a press conference on
9/10. This is capable of charging a 1999 EV1 to
80% in 12 minutes, but will first be tested on
fleet S-10 trucks only.
- EV Education Programs
Sharon Sarris from GM Corporate Communications
briefed the club about an ongoing project between
GM, AQMD, the utilities and other organizations
to educate school teachers and children about
EV's and the principles behind them. She
announced a Nov. 7 event at the Peterson museum
which can use some EV1 drivers' participation.
Interested drivers are invited to contact her.
Details have not been worked out fully at this
time, but may involve driving a selected group
of students to the event in EV1's.
- EV1 Club Chapters Forming
Rick Ostrov reported that EV1 club chapters are
in the process of organizing both in the Bay Area
and Sacramento. Congratulations up there!
- Fate of the Club Newsletter
The fate of the club's newsletter hangs in the
balance because of lack of time on editor Marvin
Rush's part and a question of how useful the club
members find it. Opinions were voiced in support
of maintaining it for the sake of the
non-computer oriented club members
(electronically connected members also like to
read it!) and because it
is useful as a hand-out to non-members, though
possibly reducing the publication frequency to 6
times/year or quarterly. If you have any opinion
on this or can provide support (e.g. article
submissions) to Marvin, please contact him at
- Pat Ward Moves on to New Challenges
Pat Ward (left) announced that he would be
leaving the EV1 team to go on to new challenges
within Saturn. He will be taking on the job of
Saturn's national Leasing and Finance manager. Rick
Ostrov (right) will be replacing him for the
moment. Congratulations and best wishes to both
these guys with their new challenges!
The next meeting is tentatively scheduled for the third
Saturday in October at the LA DWP.