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2010 Plug-in Prius Prototypes – Click above for high-res image gallery

Six months after the NAIAS (Detroit Auto Show), I finally found my notes from some very interesting sessions there. Okay, I didn't just find them. I just now found time to review them. It's been a busy year.

BMW ActiveE concept – Click above for high-res image gallery

Research study says EVs have a tough road ahead

Bob Lutz speaking at the 2009 LA Auto Show

Bob Lutz speaking at the 2009 LA Auto Show

Compared to a regular job, being self-employed has its advantages. You typically have more than one source of (modest) income and are unlikely to get fired by more than one boss at a time. If you work in your home, the commute is short and the dress code easy. And, because you're essentially always on the job, you get to combine work with play. So I nearly always work while on vacation... partly by choice, largely out of a need to get things done.

2011 Chevy Volt - Click above for high-res image gallery

Bright IDEA PHEV at the Business of Plugging In conference - Click above for high-res image gallery

I reported last month on Nissan's LEAF EV plans, as presented by Nissan Product Planning VP Larry Dominique at the August Center for Automotive Research Management Briefing Seminars (CAR MBS) in Traverse City, MI. Dominique's presentation was one highlight. Others included three speakers from Toyota and two each from Ford and GM that I wanted to share with AutoblogGreen readers. Can't cover everything, but here are interesting excerpts:

It was probably mid-1980, soon after the federal government agreed to guarantee massive loans to financially struggling Chrysler Corp., when then-Chrysler Chairman Lee Iacocca invited groups of auto media and analysts to its styling center for an off-the-record preview of what was coming two, three, even four years down the road. Most were impressed.

Had lunch the other day with Nissan North America Product Planning Vice President Larry Dominique. He is the point man for communicating Nissan's green-vehicle vision, beginning with its soon-to-come LEAF battery electric car. A few minutes earlier, he had presented exactly that to a large roomful of automaker and supplier representatives, industry analysts, consultants and media.

"I hope GM goes bankrupt," said the young California man in the Japanese restaurant. Really? Why? "Because I hate the UAW," he responded, ignorantly equating America's largest automaker to its most powerful union.

Energy Conversion Devices (ECD Ovonics) is certainly one of the pioneers in green technology. From batteries to solar cells, the company takes a lead role in many automotive pursuits, including converting a Prius gas engine to run on hydrogen.

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