Know who loves electric cars? Bill Nye the Science Guy

During the Plug-in 2009 conference in Long Beach, California last week, the most passionate advocates for plugging in their cars came out in droves for the public night. Seems that once people get a taste of plugging in their car instead of sucking down fuel at the gas station, they really, really like it. The panel for the evening was made up of Chris Paine, director of Who Killed The Electric Car? and the forthcoming follow-up; Chelsea Sexton, star of the first film and well-known plug-in vehicle advocate, and a certain science guy named Bill Nye (L to R in the image above).

Just an example of who came to the public night: we saw at least three MINI Es pull into the parking garage, (there was another on the show floor and Bill Nye said he left his at home in favor of taking the train), as well as a Tesla Roadster and a converted PHEV Prius. These are the people we've been waiting for, and you can listen to the entire panel discussion after the jump.

Paine said that the Revenge of the Electric Car movie has been pushed back to a 2010 release (shooting is to be completed by September 2010) because they want the cars to be available when the film hits theaters. Tesla and GM will be two of the main stories of the movie, Paine said, and he and his crew have shot some interesting footage already.

For his part, Nye was an original EV1 driver, which Sexton helped him get. And did you know he used to work for Boeing? Today, he's still an EV driver and likes his MINI E, but not the massive batteries or the aggressive regenerative brakes. The EV1 was sexy, and could appeal to anyone, but GM abandoned the car at "exactly the wrong time in all of human history," he said. Finding the most efficient vehicles is more important today than ever, he said, because we spend so much energy driving around.

The three panelists gave brief introductions and discussed their connection to the electric car world, then spent most of the 90 minutes answering questions from the audience. Topics included Ann Coulter and what it's like to give someone a ride in your electric car and make them excited about what EVs can do. You can listen to the entire panel using the flash player below (or download the 74 MB MP3 here)

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