The Wall Street Journal has published a very interesting article
that states that GM
is teaming with a dozen electric utilities operating in 40 states to prepare the arrival of its plug-in model (the Volt, if you didn't remember the name). From the business point of view, the article states that both the utilities and the auto industry have a lot to win. The plug-in hybrid
car is seen as a "hot product" that can revive car sales, as well as reduce our dependence on oil. GM needs utilities which can keep the grid reliable for recharges, the same way it needed a reliable battery manufacturer for the cars to work correctly.
Why a safe grid? Think of what happens in a hot summer afternoon with all A/C working and energy at its peak tier prices and plants at maximum production. Intelligent chips and software tuning would identify the car as plugged to the electric grid and then use spare electricity to recharge. According to some studies, spare power plant capacity at night could feed millions of cars.