Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Think lands in Hoosierville
The Hoosiers won out over the Ducks of Oregon and the Michiganders for the right to manufacture Think City EVs.
I love the Think! It's the car that hooked Plug In America board members Marc Geller and Sherry Boshert into the EV world when Ford was trying to meet the CARB zero emission vehicle mandate of the past decade.
Norway based Think has changed hands a few times among various groups that tried to get it going. This latest iteration is up and running in Finland, finally rolling EVs off the line for the Euro market. Now they've decided on Elkhart, IN as the location for their U.S. manufacturing.
Building EVs will bring much needed jobs to Indiana where, not coincidentally, EnerDel, Think's battery maker of choice is located. No sense shipping those heavy batteries too far.
The Think is a "city car", a classification that's quite popular in Europe. With a top speed of 60 mph and a range of 100 miles, it's ideal for the commuter. Small and light, it'll go many miles on just a few kWh.
Best of all, the Think will be a great entry level EV. I don't have pricing info yet, but the small size should enable them to get away with a small pack, I'm guessing somewhere around 20 kWh.
It should be quite popular as a first car for your high schooler, can't go too far or too fast.
The Indiana choice is interesting as it's just 137 miles from Anderson, IN, home of Bright Automotive, the maker of the most innovative plug-in hybrid work van I've seen. Here's hoping this will be the start of a center of EV innovation in the heartland.
Indiana, Thinking of Bright Ideas!