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  1. #1
    Society
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    Unhappy Better Place went bankrupt

    some of you might have seen this TEDtalk few years back:


    TL;DW:


    the network was laid out throughout the entire country, and it was going well for awhile, except for one critical element: advertisement.

    locally, people here didn't know of it, i've had people who heard about it only when encountering one of the obscurely placed stations and asking me "what's that?"... and they didn't sell cars, but word to mouth did spread...

    not fast enough, 2 days ago they filed bankruptcy.

  2. #2
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    Never heard of this company. I've heard of the concept of battery-swapping but I didn't know anyone was crazy/stupid enough to try at this point. How many electric cars are on the roads in the markets served by this company? Few, I bet. If you're in the electric car charging business and not in Japan and the US you might as well not even bother.

    It's a pie-in-the-sky idea. Most electric cars are not engineered to have their batteries easily replaced at a roadside stop somewhere.

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by 93JC View Post
    It's a pie-in-the-sky idea. Most electric cars are not engineered to have their batteries easily replaced at a roadside stop somewhere.
    that actually they did get that part: they basically cars made for it where the battery is replaced by a machine from underneath the car when you go in - they had those all over the country.

    here's how it worked:


    Quote Originally Posted by 93JC View Post
    How many electric cars are on the roads in the markets served by this company?
    not many, but i would say its mostly due to poor and uninvested marketing - most people didn't know about them.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mane View Post
    that actually they did get that part: they basically cars made for it where the battery is replaced by a machine from underneath the car when you go in - they had those all over the country.
    Oh, I wasn't denying it can't be done. Just that most electric cars, or at least most of the ones which are highway-capable, don't have easily 'swapped' batteries.

    This Agassi guy must be one hell of a salesman in any case. He sure suckered Renault. Think about how ridiculous this is. I mean, basically what you're saying is that Renault designed this car around this particular system of battery removal. What happens when a (e.g.) Tesla Roadster pulls up? It can't use the station. Even if the battery was designed to be easily swapped out of the Tesla it still couldn't use one of these stations, the station doesn't have a stock of fully-charged Tesla Roadster battery packs. The whole idea is predicated on the idea of a standardized battery size, shape, capacity, etc. which is ludicrous; batteries are designed to suit the needs of the vehicle.

    These stations were designed to work only with this one particular model of Renault, to the exclusion of EVERY OTHER CAR ON THE ENTIRE PLANET. Anybody who thought this was a good idea was a sucker at best.

  5. #5
    Senior Member _eric_'s Avatar
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    What a hilariously awful idea. They should have been developing ways to charge cars more quickly instead, like with supercapacitors or something, which could work with any electric car, instead of something so extremely restricted in an already highly niche sector. Can't really say I'm sad for the investors; hopefully it'll be a good lesson for them.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by 93JC View Post
    These stations were designed to work only with this one particular model of Renault
    exactly - in theory over time they could have gotten more models - but on the start it was entirely dependent on the ability to sell the actual cars, and that's what they didn't do.

  7. #7
    Senior Member cafe's Avatar
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    That's too bad. It might be an idea whose time has not yet come.
    “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
    ~ John Rogers

  8. #8

    Default

    This will lead auto industry into the new direction.

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