SPECIAL REPORT: Future Shock – EV Milestones -
Connect with us
Close Sidebar Panel Open Sidebar Panel

News

SPECIAL REPORT: Future Shock – EV Milestones

The Electric Vehicle (EV) Has Been a Part of American Automotive History For More than 100 Years

Advertisement

Important milestones kicked off more than a century of the EV’s struggling evolution on the timeline of American automotive history:

Advertisement

— 1891: William Morrison of Des Moines, IA, builds the first electric car in the United States.

— 1897: The Pope Manufacturing Company of Connecticut becomes the first large-scale manufacturer of electric automobiles in America, and the first electric taxis begin operating in New York City.

— 1899: Thomas Edison embarks on a quest to create a long-lasting battery for commercial automobiles. (A decade later, he abandons his efforts.)

— 1900: EVs are an important part of the American automotive landscape. Of the 4,192 cars produced in the United States, 28% are powered by electricity.

— 1908: Henry Ford introduces the gasoline-powered Model T, making a powerful impact on the American automotive market.

— 1920s: The EV’s popularity plummets, due to its lack of horsepower, a healthy supply of gasoline and the American consumer’s desire for longer distance automobiles.

Advertisement

— 1966: Congress introduces bills advocating EV use as a way to reduce air pollution.

— 1970s: A growing environmental movement, combined with rapidly climbing oil prices, sparks a revival in EV interest from both consumers and manufacturers.

— 1972: “Godfather of the Hybrid” Victor Wouk converts a 1972 Buick Skylark into the first full-powered, full-size hybrid vehicle for the 1970 Federal Clean Car Incentive Program, later killed in 1976 by the Environmental Protection Agency.

— 1974: At the Electric Vehicle Symposium in Washington, DC, Vanguard-Sebring debuts its CitiCar, which has a top speed of more than 30 mph and a range of 40 miles. Although in 1975, the company is the sixth-largest automaker in the United States, it is dissolved a few years later.

Advertisement

— 1975: The U.S. Postal Service launches a test program utilizing 350 electric jeeps from AM General, a division of AMC.

— 1976: Congress passes the Electric and Hybrid Vehicle Research, Development and Demonstration Act, intended to foster the development of hybrid-electric technologies.

— 1988: GM partners with California’s AeroVironment to design what would later become the EV1.

— 1997: Toyota introduces its Prius, the world’s first mass-produced and marketed gasoline/electric hybrid car, in Japan, selling almost 18,000 units during the first year.

— 1997-2000: Big car manufacturers produce a few thousand all-electric cars, such as Honda’s EV Plus, Ford’s Ranger pickup EV, Nissan’s Altra EV and Toyota’s RAV4 EV, to name a few. However, by the early 2000s, all major automakers’ all-electric production programs are discontinued.

Advertisement

— 2003: GM announces it won’t renew leases on its EV1 cars, citing difficulty in replacing repair parts. The company begins efforts to reclaim all its EV cars by 2004.

— 2004-2005: GM reclaims, crushes and recycles its EV1s, prompting electric vehicle enthusiasts to hold an unsuccessful 28-day “Don’t Crush” vigil that begins on Feb. 16, 2005.

— Present: A few pure EVs and plug-in hybrids are on the market in limited numbers. Due to rising oil prices and renewed public demand, the future looks promising for EVs once again.
 

 

 

Advertisement
Click to comment
Connect
Tomorrows Technician