June 28th, 2008 at 11:00am

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A decade ago General Motors put one of the coolest cars of all time on the road, the EV1. While there were a number of hard-core EV enthusiasts who became passionately committed to the car, it never caught on with the masses. But that was then and this is now. GM should seriously consider . . .

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10 Comments to “AUTOLINE ON AUTOBLOG: Hey GM, Bring Back the EV1”

  1. John Says:


    Great idea! The EV1 with a facelift and minor low cost technology improvements would reall get the electric movement moving. A perfect platform for developing nations that have the oil market spooked.

    How much did EV1 cost?

  2. William R. Walling Says:

    “Sadly Dr. Paul McCready, his AeroVironment created the ‘Impact’ concept vehicle later renamed EV1, has passed away thus too late for GM!”

  3. John Says:

    Hey John,

    Would you consider an entire show dedicated to the future transportation oil demand problem from developing nations like China and India, and how it could be solved by moving these new drivers past oil and directly into clean and efficient alternative energy vehicles?

    This problem is bigger than the U.S. Congress can deal with. They have proven there lack of leadership.

    If there are forces out there that are leading China and India toward oil as there main fuel for transportation they need to be identified and confronted.

    Until the growth in these developing markets directed away from oil, our existing infrastructure and economy will continue to suffer.

    Have you checked into the current price for a gallon of heating oil ? I saw $4.69 yesterday.

    Watch the economy sink when the U.S. oil consumer watches their heating oil bill double this year.

    This older lower tech EV1 electric car would be a perfect vehicle for these developing nations.

  4. James Says:


    Maybe the sentiment is right, but the product is wrong. Too few people can use a mostly impractical two-seat car like the EV1 or Honda Insight. At best it’s a “statement toy”. Even if I wanted one, since I have only one parking space, it’s got to at least match my Mazda 6 in passenger and trunk space.

    Also, the original EV1 was pretty ugly. Add a rear seat, make it more practical, and above all else make it good-looking –even at the expense of some drag; aerodynamics probably dictated the EV1′s shape– then we’re talking.

  5. Tom Martin Says:

    The main problem is that the EV1 was a high tech, cost no object automobile. I don’t remember the types of alloy construction and the price of the batteries (lead/acid if I remember correctly), but the car cost well over $100K to build–half of which was the battery which needed to be replaced every 2-4 years.

    GM could find better and lower cost batteries today, but would need less exotic construction if it wanted to make a profit.

  6. John Says:

    John McElroy, Tom, James,

    Can we all agree that if we were to introduce all of the new drivers in China and India to alternative fuel vehicles we could get a lot of panic out ou the oil market?

    They are not driving today. They do not need to learn to drive in a vehicle with old technology that uses oil.

    Who are India and China going to sell their products to if oil prices destroy the U.S. consumer market for their products?

  7. Tom Martin Says:

    I can agree that the world needs alternatives to gasoline cars. If Israel bombs the nuclear plant being constructed in Iran, Iran plans to block all oil tankers near Iran. If this happens, oil is predicted to rise to over $400 a barrel. Looks like Iran has the world over a barrel.

    Hopefully, every auto manufacturer is developing alternative fuel vehicles and the power companies are creating alternative means to produce electricity. The world needs this yesterday.

    Back to the point, I believe that GM is building on it’s experience with the EV1, but I don’t think it’s practical to build EV1s. It’s too expensive to build.

  8. Tom Says:

    Note that the EV1 had power electronics that were quite large. The Equinox Fuel Cell ELECTRIC VEHICLE has newer power electronics necessary to run the vehicle and it’s in a much smaller package. Nobody at GM tossed out the technology, it’s just been upgraded. The EV1 lives on folks and it’s newest offspring is the Volt.

  9. John Says:

    I was watching CNBC this morning and T.Boone Pickens was expaining his energy plan,…,

    John McElroy, investigate the 19 cars that GM currently builds that run on Natural Gas. There a Eight Million running world wide.

    T.Boone Pickens would be a great guest to have on Auto Line Detroit.

    You can find him here.

  10. Tess Says:

    Bring back the EV 1 if you never have destroyed that car and GM would be on top of the world.

    See that the price everyone pay for when dealing with politics. That car would have made the world over. Again, we should have been driving electric back in the 60′s and and especially with all of Tesla knowledge and can be done and most people do know about Tesla today.

    Trouble is nobody wants to be depend on oil and we can live nicely without oil and all based on politics and money, greed, and corruption.