• Sep 1, 2010
For coming up with a clever marketing response to General Motor's attempt to trademark the term "range anxiety," we have to give Tesla Motors some credit. GM will (is already?) come out swinging against all-electric vehicles, and it'll take some judo-like moves from smaller companies and electric vehicle fans to turn GM's energy against itself, if we want the intra-plug-in community fighting to continue. Here's Tesla's stab at GM's trademark attempt:
By all means, GM can have "range anxiety." To Roadster owners, the term is as irrelevant as "gas stop" or "smog check." We are, however, looking into trademarking "Tesla grin."
You might thing that quote came from Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who's been known to offer us an eyebrow-raising remark or two. But no. This one comes from Tesla vice president of communications Ricardo Reyes, indicating that the company is officially behind this line of attack. Will it work? For some, it probably already has.

[Source: Tesla]


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  • 33 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      @Electruk. Nice strawman. As to my point: It is still far more likely that a transformer blows due to a storm, overload, heat, or car accident, than it is likely for an entire country to have its fossil fuel supply completly cut off. In fact, it's been about 40 years since rationing occurred (never cut off). Now compare that to power outages and extended repair times. I think I have strong support for my assertion.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @A5-14
        The longest I've been without electricity was a day and a half during the Northeast Blackout in 2003. Guess what? Couldn't get gasoline then either. The next longest was a blown transformer and the power was back on within 12 hours. That's in a 35 year time period. Having an electric car wouldn't have made a difference for me.

        Look at the tension between Iran and Israel. Thats not a will it happen, but when it will happen scenario. When that hits the fan, it will affect more people than a blown transformer would.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Timo
        It's more how A5-14 made his argument. Such an absolute statement. If you follow his logic we shouldn't use electricity at all because the reliability of it is so unpredictable.

        Instead we should have natural gas powered appliances and lights. Wait, my natural gas was off twice this year for over an hour each time, so we can't use that either. I've lost count how many times my water has been shut off. Civilizational is coming to an end!

        That is how ridiculous his argument is. Would there be issues, sure. If I had a Leaf and my power went out, I could commute for 5 days. My neighbour could go for a week and a half, her husband one day. Not everyones situation is the same. And in a pinch you could run a cord from the portable generator to the electric car.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Yes EV it is absolutely nuts how the money flows in the oil inustry.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I don't know about your hood, but our power was only out once for about 90 minutes after some incompetent driver plowed down a powerpole in the vincinity. And if you are anxious about that you can allways put up solar panels or a windmill or what have you. Drilling for oil otoh is a wee bit more difficult should you ever need to.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Yes, well, we employ Americans to fix our grid, stimulating our economy. If oil was cut off we would send our president begging for oil with his wallet open to OPEC sending billions out of the country. If that did not work we would send the military and that certainly is not a thrifty move. The grid needs updating regardless. Grids are expanded every day for new housing developments it realy isn't that difficult.

        The hardships and the end results are the same wheather oil is cut off or supply exceeds demand. Both result in exorbitant oil prices that many Americans cannot afford.

        I can't remember the last time I was angry at the electric corp because I could not get electricity. Nor can I remmeber electricity being so high priced it made me angry. Oil is making me angry now with unemployment 10% and gas at $3 per gallon. All the fat cats make profits in oil while the middle class and lower classes pay for it. We barrow money from China and pay it to the middle east for oil and all the majority population of this country cheers about it. Pure lunacy!
        • 4 Years Ago
        Where do you live??? I've been in the same house for 10 years and had maybe 10 hours of down time that I can even remember in that span...in TOTAL.

        On the other hand, when the huricanes came through and caused some refinery damage and pipeline problems back in 2008, I remember driving around for weeks and getting in gas lines to find a gas station that could fill my car up in the Southeast. Most stations had "out of gas" signs on them for days at a time.

        And as others point out, I'll take American electricity and American workers to fix any problems that do arise LONG before I'd want to depend on the nearly 70% of our oil we get from foreign sources.

        • 4 Years Ago
        I think A5-14 has a small point here, even that "neighborhood transformer blows" is not the one. In this summer we had a couple of pretty bad storms out here and that cut down couple of main powerlines and lots and lots of smaller ones. Didn't hurt me, but there were couple of thousand households with power outage and repairs took over a week, in some cases almost a month (took the repair crews several days to even reach the broken parts, because couple of million cubic meters of fallen trees).

        It is not every day problem and doesn't happen everywhere but it is a problem. Those households were powered by gasoline-powered generators. This obviously could be replaced by HFC-generators in future, but for now that is not a problem that should be taken lightly.
      • 4 Years Ago
      They both have electric motors and batteries, but I'm pretty sure they're not in competition with each other (except for the whole Tesla/Toyota marriage).
      • 4 Years Ago
      Gotta wonder if the GM bailout was a good thing. Looks like we spent all that money on a dog that bites the hand that feeds it. Is GM lobbying for the status quo? Is GM supporting fossil fuel? The answer is yes, because they are in lockstep with the Washington oil lobbyists. I thought they would break away from the current system of Politician/Lobbyist/Industry calling the shots...but nope! they are right back in the middle, supporting Big Oil by continuing to build internal combustion engine for every product.
        • 4 Years Ago
        really...you though the GM bailout was going to be a good thing...

        Their is no such thing as a "good bailout", not when its coming from American taxpayers. All of the bail-outs are bad. If you don't allow the company to fail, they wont learn from their mistakes.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I have no objection to GM copyrighting the word "ANXITEY". It is kind of cute.
      • 4 Years Ago
      GM will be bankrupt again soon, don't bother listening to them.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Telsa, perhaps you can trademark 'Vaporcar' or 'Late and over-budget'.
        • 4 Years Ago
        AFAIK Tesla has produced what it has said this far, maybe a bit late though, so I find that "vaporcar" a bit harsh thing to say. That one belongs to Lightning Car Company. Or maybe Fisker Automotive (though they might actually get it done sometime soon), so that "late and over-budget" might be more appropriate for them.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I suffer quite a bit from 'oil anxiety', and if supplies were interupted then you would be left with a Volt capable of only 40 miles, which WOULD lead to range anxiety!
      My bail-out anxiety regarding keeping useless deadwood going has already proved justified.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Try to sort out that anxiety problem. It's playing havoc with your complexion.
        • 4 Years Ago
        It's far more likely that your neighborhood transformer blows and it takes the public utility days or even a week to get your electric power back. Then you are left with a nice garage ornament.
        • 4 Years Ago
        So when was the last time your neighborhood transformer blew because you ran and electric range and electric clothes dryer at the same time? Charging an EV draws the same as runnning one of these (assuming 220V charging).

        Once again FUD strikes.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Hmmmm. Not sure this will work for them. The sad fact is while a pure EV is great around town and medium distance one-way trips, you aint't gonna bomb from Seattle to SF in ten hours in a Tesla Roadster or Model-S.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I would never drive continuously for more than 5h (even an ICE). I'd cut the Seattle-SF trip into 3 days, chargine the EV overnight.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Google maps shows that trip would take 13 hours 23 mins. If you do it in 10 hours that shows you have a disregard for the law and the environment.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Ian "you aint't gonna bomb from Seattle to SF in ten hours in a Tesla Roadster or Model-S."

        Very appropriate use of the word "bomb" there. Afterall we have been bombing innocent kids all over world for you ability to "bomb" your way from Seattle to SF. Do you also use baby seal oil to lubricate your engine ?

        • 4 Years Ago
        People who buy cars from Tesla have lots of money to burn on:

        1. Another car
        2. Airline tickets
        3. Limo / car service
        • 4 Years Ago
        Not in ten hours unless you risk a few speeding tickets. You can do it in about 15 hours though if there is a fast chargers in a way, and less than 14 if there is battery swapping (with Type S). 800+ miles is a long trip to drive without breaks. I would get hungry at some point and few stretching breaks would be in order anyway.

        @Dave: Type S is not a rich man toy car, those that buy it (using part-exchange) can be just common people. It is relatively cheap car to own if they really can make it as cheap as they are saying in their website.
      • 4 Years Ago
      That car is just gorgeous! It can't be here soon enough.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Perhaps GM is still trying to justify crushing EV1 ?
        • 4 Years Ago
        More like they are trying to justify no longer calling it a Hybrid.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Perhaps Nissan should trademark the phrase "price anxiety" :-)
        • 4 Years Ago
        Or may be "sticker shock"
        • 4 Years Ago
        If you trade mark "range anxiety", "stranded" is obviously necessary as it is the end result of range anxiety. None are very positive. What kind of ad campaign are they planning? Smear?
      • 4 Years Ago
      Don't you people at at Autoblog Green every proof read your articles? What's with all the typos?
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