It's a cute small car but not a girl's car....the Think City is for everyone and it's electric! This will be the first car not to be sold via showrooms. The Think City will be custom-made from online orders and will come full wired...thanks to Google, who have a long history with this particular car.
The Norwegian company behind this car was formed way back in 1990 as an electric car startup called Pivco Industries. It quickly ran out of money but was revived in 1999 when the Ford Motor Company, interested in producing an electric car for the green-conscious California market, bought the company and renamed it Think Nordic. The company produced around a 1000 electric cars called 'Think City', which as the name implies, were meant for city driving.
These cars had a weak battery and a very short range of 50 miles. Ford lost faith in electric cars and sold off the company to a Swiss electronics firm Kamkorp Microelectronics——the Think City cars not yet sold were crushed by Ford and dumped as waste!
One of the cars that survived was owned by Sergey Brin, co-founder of Google.
By 2006 Think Nordic had gone into bankruptcy. Then a Norwegian venture capitalist, Jan-Olaf Willums, bought the company and revived the Think City electric car concept, but in his words, "building the car company from the ground up, using concepts like social responsibility, localization, and viral marketing." He renamed the company Think Global.
The new Think City has a better design, and a longer range of 110 miles, with a top speed close to 90 mph (from its new submarine batteries). When Willums was exploring his online orders idea, he got in touch with the founders of Google, and discovered their old connection with his electric car.
Every City will be Internet-and Wi-Fi enabled, allowing drivers to access the Internet—and to communicate back and forth with the car itself. A City will email its owner, for instance, when its battery is running low. Because the battery is the most expensive part of an electric car, Think will sell the car but lease the battery. Take the battery out of the equation, and the car might go for as little as $17,000, with a "mobility fee" of $100 to $200 a month that might also include services like insurance and wireless Internet access.
For those who want test drive this cute electric car, just send a text message to your nearest Think About car-sharing franchise——if you enjoy the experience order a Think City online and wait for it to be delivered. Jan-Olaf Willums successfully pursued his dream for localization; the Think City components come from different parts of the world and are assembled locally to save costs. This also means that the car can change body styles with ease, from a coupe to a sports convertible, with ease!
Enova Systems, a leading developer of proprietary electric, hybrid and fuel cell digital power management systems, received a Production Contract to provide a minimum of 1,000 Power Control Units (PCU’s) to Think Global in 2008, for use in the Think City. Future production ambitions for the Think City are expected at a minimum of 10,000 units in 2009.
Mike Staran, Enova’s President and CEO said, “Enova is privileged to be working with a visionary company like Think Global. We are pleased to be awarded this high volume Production Contract from them. Our belief is that the Think City vehicle will revolutionize the passenger electric vehicle market in Europe, and ultimately North America.”
Enova’s PCU is a critical component of the vehicle’s power system, converting and regulating high voltage power to lower voltages where and as required. Enova's module transfers power throughout the drive system and assists in energy recovery during regenerative braking, extending the overall range of the vehicle. The source of propulsion power is therefore transparent to the driver, allowing him to concentrate on normal vehicle operation.
Monday, February 25, 2008
Posted by Chrissy at 5:40 PM