With a bank-role of $187 million (from selling his Silicon Valley start-up), Martin Eberhard has used his entrepreneurial and engineering smarts to come up with a vehicle that outdoes the lamented GM EV1. As AutoblogGreen has reported, people can actually buy (375 so far) the Tesla EV rather than lease it as GM did. Further, the Tesla uses lithium-ion batteries - 7,000 of them - rather than the lead acid or late arriving nickel-metal hydride batteries of the EV1.

The Sierra Club magazine reports that Eberhard feels that an electric fuel tank (the battery pack) is the "ultimate multi-fuel" system. "You can use natural gas to generate the electricity. You can burn coal. If you don't want any part of that, you can use wind power or put solar panels on your roof."

Eberhard has answers for concerns about lithium ion batteries. To counter the fire threat, he says all the batteries are individually wrapped to isolate a hot cell and prevent further problems. Further, he says, lithium ion batteries are considered "landfill safe" though he rightly prefers they be recycled instead. In fact, Tesla will recycle them.

[Source: Sierra Club]

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