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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A group spearheaded by the local automobile dealership EnVironmental Motors in Glendale, California is petitioning the Federal government to create a new vehicle classification. The Medium Speed Vehicle (MSV) Classification. Currently, the federal government limits electric cars capable of going 35-40mph to 25mph. Help us create the MSV class so these cars can be driven on more roads by more people to help offset the tons of carbon released into the air by gasoline vehicles.

We need atleast 1000 signatures- PLEASE SIGN THE PETITION BELOW

http://www.thepetitionsite.com/1/create-a-new-electric-vehicle-classification
 

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Since I am in canada, I don't think I can help much but I'm sure you will get plenty of support from others here. Best of luck.
 

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Since I am in canada, I don't think I can help much but I'm sure you will get plenty of support from others here. Best of luck.
Aaw, sign it anyway. This is American politics we're talking about here. No one cares :p

The basic concept sounds great. I don't like the idea that the bill would be legalizing 30-40 mph cars for major streets though. I think the cars should capable of 48 mph while climbing a 3% grade or something like that.

30-40 mph is just too slow. I am all for driving slower when I'm not getting in anyone's way, but driving a car that can't get out of the way no matter what is just not cool.

I don't think that this is the natural progression for EVs. The natural progression is PHEVs which will encourage quick-charging stations and then EVs. There is no room for doggy 30-40 mph cars. Heck, a person can still buy a fuel efficient car for dirt cheap that will go 90 mph. this slow-car step is not necessary.

I signed the petition anyway :p
 

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This is a complicated problem unfortunately.

Car safety standards have never been this high, but it came with a price. The costs involved in certifying a car to be legally driven at highway speeds are now so high that its nearly impossible for a newcomer to get in without billions in backing. Its sort of like the two party political system in the USA. So complicated that it keeps real ideas out by insuring that no fresh companies can get a start. The low speed exemption would allow a way around that, but the catch is the vehicle is no longer held to the same safety standards as regular passenger vehicles. The speed limiter is an attempt to balance that and minimize the potential danger of bodily harm or worse. We all know about the geewizz:mad:

Now we have to consider the possibility of allowing these same uncertified cars on roads to travel up to 55 MPH according to some definitions of medium speed vehicles.

I feel the real solution is to set up a government agency to pay for the safety testing that has been imposed on the industry. But that seems very unlikely to ever happen. Reduced safety requirements for lower volume vehicle production could also help. I never liked crush zones, air bags, ABS and other electronic systems that take control out of the driver's hands or justify writing off the vehicle after a minor fender bender.

They said they need 1000 signatures and I saw they are well over 800. They will get there, but I think I will sit this one out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Safety is definitely first. That's why we are saying they should not be allowed on streets over 35mph. We just want them to be able to keep up with traffic on those streets! At 25mph, they are allowed on 35mph streets, but 25 is too slow.
 

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No offense, but I'll convert an already crash-certified car in a manner that it will do freeway speeds with long range before I'll pay good money for a vehicle that is limited in speed due to wanting to get around crash-worthiness certifications.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
This legislation is just to help the cars that are available now. Neighborhood electrics have their place in the market. Lots of people don't leave a 30 mile radius of their home. The whole idea behind them is you use the NEV for most of your driving and just use your gas vehicle when you need too. I've been driving an NEV daily now for almost 3 months. I've only needed to use my gas vehicle about once a week. I'm saving hundreds of dollars a month by using this car. I've adjusted mine to 35mph and I keep up with traffic just fine. Most surface streets are 35 or below so I don't have a problem getting to the places I need to go.
 

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I follow what you're saying... But even if I drive 35 in a 30 here, I'll get run over. I drive a tacoma, so thankfully they take notice that I'm driving the speed limit... but in an NEV, I'd get killed by some cell-phone talking soccer mom racing to get the kids to practice.

With the exception of 30 mph roads leaving my neighborhood, all the "surface streets" in the area are 40-45 mph limits with people driving 60 on them. All the freeways are 60 mph limits with people driving 80 on them. Don't see any NEVs here unless you go to a golf course.

However, just today some collegues came back from lunch and saw an electric Ranger conversion on the road and came by my desk to tell me about it.

*shrug*

Not every type of vehicle is appropriate for everyone in every location.
 

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This legislation is just to help the cars that are available now. Neighborhood electrics have their place in the market. Lots of people don't leave a 30 mile radius of their home. The whole idea behind them is you use the NEV for most of your driving and just use your gas vehicle when you need too. I've been driving an NEV daily now for almost 3 months. I've only needed to use my gas vehicle about once a week. I'm saving hundreds of dollars a month by using this car. I've adjusted mine to 35mph and I keep up with traffic just fine. Most surface streets are 35 or below so I don't have a problem getting to the places I need to go.
Thanks for comming back and posting some replies. Its nice to know there is a person on the other end. Thats not always the case when an organization tries to contact the forum here (we get lots of spammers and even a few scammers).

I respect your position and hope you succeed, but I feel I will remain neutral on this one. Crash safety is still a problem for me since cars are already crash tested at 30-35 MPH. I'm not a fan of airbags or fancy electronic safety systems, but I can't really be confident in the structural safety of a vehicle that has never been crash tested formally or informally. My fear is that if some one gets hurt in one of these vehicles, it could turn the media and regulators against EVs. Some are already complaining about the fact that they are silent.

What sort of time frame are you looking at for this petition?

Welcome to the forum.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Not every type of vehicle is appropriate for everyone in every location.
Absolutely true. NEV's do not work for everyone in every location. Some people live in places like your area where speeds are posted faster. NEV's shouldn't be used there. There's also places like Pasadena where there isn't one road in the whole city that goes above 35. The NEV is perfect for places like that. Unfortunatley, there arent too many electric cars that you can buy TODAY that legally go above 35-40 mph. Tesla? Or converted cars made by companies like Hybrid Technologies? All these cars have a pretty steep price tag too. NEV's are half the price of a gas car and can do most, if not all the daily driving...but not in every area.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
We don't think ALL NEV's should be allowed to go 35. Only ones with reinforced frames and are enclosed. We've actually left that to NHTSA to decide if what they think is safe for the MSV class. But the ZENN for example has a reinforced aluminum frame that goes around the entire car. The frame and body come from a company in France called Microcar. In France the car has a deisel engine in it and it has a top speed of 70mph. So in the case of the ZENN, the body and frame were intended for much higher speeds than what we are pushing for.
I agree with you though, all we need is one bad accident and the NEV's won't look so good. There was an article written about someone that DID get an accident with the ZENN and they were fine. A full size SUV T-boned them. You can read it here.

We already petitioned NHTSA and we recieved a response that we are in line to be heard. I just thought backing up our petition with 1000 signatures from people other than those of us in the business would help even more. I'm almost at 1000 now, so i'll submit it when it gets there.
 

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We don't think ALL NEV's should be allowed to go 35. Only ones with reinforced frames and are enclosed. We've actually left that to NHTSA to decide if what they think is safe for the MSV class. But the ZENN for example has a reinforced aluminum frame that goes around the entire car. The frame and body come from a company in France called Microcar. In France the car has a deisel engine in it and it has a top speed of 70mph. So in the case of the ZENN, the body and frame were intended for much higher speeds than what we are pushing for.
I agree with you though, all we need is one bad accident and the NEV's won't look so good. There was an article written about someone that DID get an accident with the ZENN and they were fine. A full size SUV T-boned them. You can read it here.

We already petitioned NHTSA and we recieved a response that we are in line to be heard. I just thought backing up our petition with 1000 signatures from people other than those of us in the business would help even more. I'm almost at 1000 now, so i'll submit it when it gets there.
I see.......

Now that changes things a little. You have my signature.
 

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Your welcome:)

You're obviously not just another special interest group and have thought this out very well. You also seem to have a lot of patience to persuade the odd skeptic (not that I am a skeptic anymore;))
 

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Yes, where is the thumbs-up smiley face, or the applauding hands smiley face? :D

I think you have me convinced. :)
 

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I follow what you're saying... But even if I drive 35 in a 30 here, I'll get run over. I drive a tacoma, so thankfully they take notice that I'm driving the speed limit... but in an NEV, I'd get killed by some cell-phone talking soccer mom racing to get the kids to practice.

With the exception of 30 mph roads leaving my neighborhood, all the "surface streets" in the area are 40-45 mph limits with people driving 60 on them. All the freeways are 60 mph limits with people driving 80 on them. Don't see any NEVs here unless you go to a golf course.

However, just today some collegues came back from lunch and saw an electric Ranger conversion on the road and came by my desk to tell me about it.

*shrug*

Not every type of vehicle is appropriate for everyone in every location.
You must live in Texas.
 

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You must live in Texas.
How'd you guess? Was it the TX in my name or the Texas in my location tag? :p :D

Yes, home of the LEGAL 80 mph freeways, and the 60 mph freeways that people drive 80 mph on anyhow and rarely get busted.

There are places in TX where an NEV would be a great vehicle to have, but the posted (or unposted!) speedlimit of a residential street is 30 mph, which is lower in other states. And is rarely observed by drivers in the Dallas area.
 

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I live in Phoenix AZ, and a car that is approved for roads with a posted limit of 35 or less means that I can only drive about 1/2 mile - unless I want to go north, then I can go about 4 miles before running out of half milers on which to drive.

I sure do wish that the bill would allow for 45 mph. Then I could go anywhere in the city that the batteries would take me.

Either way, as long as the cars are safe and are not in the way, I am all for legislation that will increase the number of EVs on the road.
 

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How'd you guess? Was it the TX in my name or the Texas in my location tag? :p :D

Yes, home of the LEGAL 80 mph freeways, and the 60 mph freeways that people drive 80 mph on anyhow and rarely get busted.

There are places in TX where an NEV would be a great vehicle to have, but the posted (or unposted!) speedlimit of a residential street is 30 mph, which is lower in other states. And is rarely observed by drivers in the Dallas area.
The 60MPH on surface streets sounded too familiar, ( Yes then I looked at your profile). They don't follow speed limits here in Houston either. Which is OK by me, it just makes using a NEV more complicated. I think the law limiting the speed of NEV's is stupid, but if you are going more than 5MPH under the speed limit you should get a ticket. Unfortunately I've never been in a state that enforces that law. Having a provision for people to drive their gulf carts to the grocery store is generous for a government determined to eliminate any competition to the big automakers. And probably a direct result of AARP, (or I'll eat my hat). Unfortunately since little old ladies only drive 25MPH even in a V8 Mustang I dont see them supporting any faster than that. Just build your electric vehicle to go up to 60MPH then you can keep up with traffic on surface streets here in Texas. If you only want to drive to the grocery store you can.
 
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