China's electric carshare vending machines
— By Tyler Falk on December 30, 2013, 1:21 PM PST
Great idea but where will the electricity come from.
Currently most of China's electric power comes from coal.
That means that these are really coal powered cars.
So the amount of pollution will not be decreased by use of "electric" cars.
What's the solution?
The video showed a film of the streets of a major city, but it didn't look very crowded to me. London, England has very heavy traffic, but we do not have the pollution problems that they are experiencing in China. What is the real cause of the pollution? I believe it will be industrial pollution, and not caused by motor vehicles.
The hourly rental rate is very reasonable, so these car stations are going to take a long time to make a payback. I wonder what the cost is for a taxi for one hour. What is the cost of one of these electric cars to buy? One small problem with renting a car, is that it could be sitting idle while you are doing a shopping expedition , or maybe visiting friends. It might be a bit inconvenient to keep returning a vehicle to its nearest depot. Electricity has got to be much cheaper than gasoline or diesel, and of course much cleaner (apart from the problem of generating electricity from polluting coal-fired power stations, which I believe are the real problem)
China might need those "Kandi" operations, but at what cost?
Range won't be a problem, if all one needs is something that gets them to a destination and back that totals no more than 70 miles. Beyond that, they'll need to improve the vehicles, or get into transportation that gets people into longer distances.
So, what is the cost of setting up the operation? What is the cost of each vehicle? What is the cost of maintenance? What is the cost of labor, to build up the infrastructure and to build the fleets and to maintain the vehicles and the garages? What is the cost of recharging batteries, and what about the cost of replacing batteries that are aged out of operation and just simply went bad?
It's all fine and dandy when one talks about how great it would be, but, how great is the cost, and how great is the practicality? If those vehicles were cost effective and practical, the world would have been inundated with them a long time ago.
If the cost of building the whole infrastructure and the cars and the maintenance are either subsidized or fully paid by government, then the costs issues is not a business factor. It is a big government issue, which ends up costing the whole country; but then again, the Chinese government can do things which aren't practical in most other countries.
It's sound great, but you mention $3.25/hr rental. Can I ask a sensible challenge question - how many of Hangzou's residents can actually afford this ? ... and for the wealthy there, why would you not just buy one.
This looks like the future. I mean that.
I love reading those articles in magazines about "The City of the Future". Just imagine yourself as a single mother of 3 of which the oldest child is a teenager living in one of those cities and you soon see that those cities are simply not designed for real people.
Now imagine putting the Khandi Machine into one of those cities. For once, it works.
From the last statistics I've seen, car ownership in the west is down amongst the younger generations. I don't blame them. No place to park, too expensive to buy, and too expensive to use and maintain. A better solution is to move to an area of the city with cheap rents and very near public transit. When I visit the "big" city near me, the core is filled with younger people with the older folks all living in the suburbs. And if you live in the core, you walk to buy groceries and walk or take public transit to your multiple jobs. So you don't need a car, most of the time. But this Khandi machine is the solution for when you do.
Electricity Generation Solution --> Nuclear, Hydro, Gei-thermal, Tidal, Wave with some solar/wind, plus energy efficiency. Keep the Hydrocarbons for aviation, marine and chemical feedstock.
The hourly rental to you may seem reasonable, but what is the median income in Hangzhou ??