At the end of the day yesterday, I snagged a few minutes with ZENN Motor Company CEO Ian Clifford by the EDTA Conference refreshments table and posed the question that Darin left in the comments when I asked what readers wanted to know more about: what's up with this secretive EESTOR ultracapacitor?

Clifford didn't spill all the beans to AutoblogGreen (not enough truth serum on that table), but he did tell us some things that really whets our appetites for more information. The EESTOR technology is something totally new, it "just doesn't exist" right now. It's not lithium-ion or a chemical based battery (it's a solid state ultracapacitor). It is "a significant breakthrough." These tidbits we already knew (see these posts on The Fraser Domain and TreeHugger), but what's less known is how the EESTOR technology will change ZENN.

For one thing, Clifford said, this new power source will allow ZENN to quadruple the range and introduce high-speed charging to their Low Speed Vehicles (LSVs). ZENN will also be able to seriously look at a high-speed platform and make a highway-ready vehicle if the technology is as good as the hushed rumors suggest. Clifford said using EESTOR's tech would add less $1,000 to the cost of a ZENN car and return performance that rivals an ICE. ZENN also has dibs on the technology.

"We have exclusivity in the technology as well up to a 1,400 kilo curb weight, so that's a five-passenger mid-size vehicle and smaller," Clifford said, adding that ZENN has worldwide exclusivity to convert ICE cars to EESTOR electric vehicles.

But why take my word for it? You can hear Clifford yourself in this five-minute MP3 (about 1MB).

And Devin, I've got more information on another all-electric vehicle at the show, the Silverado EV conversion. That'll be up later today. In the meantime, what do you all think of the EESTOR tech? Is it another Segway, or a possible reinvention of the wheel?


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