In a move that pushes electric vehicles into mainstream territory, Hyundai revealed its BlueOn electric vehicle in South Korea. What makes this vehicle remarkable is that it has two recharging capabilities: 220-volt household power and 380-volt industrial-strength power.
The BlueOn, which will be produced in a limited run in 2012, is capable of an 85-mile range.
Hyundai said that a 220-volt charge takes six hours and that with 380 volts, the battery can be recharged to 80% of capacity in 25 minutes.
The EV business is faced with the dilemma on whether to push for a widespread quick-charge network. Companies launching the first EVs don’t seem to be so keen on this, seeing that the EVs can function mainly as limited-range city cars.
But what this does is limit EVs to only a narrow slice of the market and it means that it will only have a marginal impact on emissions and petroleum use.
According to Oliver Hazimeh, leader of the global e-mobility practice at the consulting firm PRTM, discussions about fast-charging (aka Level 3 charging) failed to get traction this past year.
While Hazimeh admits how formidable the infrastructure challenge is, he believes that after the first wave of EVs are sold, the industry will have to switch to fast charging. [via autonews - sub. required]