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November 6, 2011 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Chic Peep checks in: Electrified over i MiEV and charging stations

Hot weather always makes Chic feel a bit “sticky”. Melting is a possibility with the summer’s heat. Refreshed by cooler weather, she remembered to check in. With Chic Peep, it’s always something energizing.

“C’est-moi, Phil. Chic here for un petit chat. Wait, let me turn down the tunes. Got that Green Overdrive video of Katie Fehrenbacher reviewing the Mitsubishi i MiEV electric car. I know, I can see you rolling your eyes because she doesn’t talk mechanics, or give technical info.  I heard you ranting from here that she never even mentions if the brakes are regenerative or not when she has the perfect opportunity while driving down Lombard Street in San Francisco.

i MiEV (photo from Green Overdrive)

You do have to admit the i MiEV looked really cute zipping through those twists and turns – kinda like a kid’s toy someone pushed-started at the top and then scrambled down to the bottom to grab.

Probably a good car for places with a lot of slow-paced school zones and inching, inching, inching forward traffic jams. As Katie says, it’s not a performance car. But not everyone needs one of those everyday…unless they are moi!

Looks like the US version is a bit wider than the Japanese one. So the air bags could be put in – so marketing says! Couldn’t be because US passengers tend to spread out a bit more when they sit down? HA. HA. Seriously, there are only four seat belts in the car even if Katie stuffed all those people in for the show. (Uh, Mr. policeman, we have a new definition of “cargo” and “baggage”? Ah, c’est la vie!)

Still, you have to be excited about getting a fully assembled bike in the back. Alternative transportation may be good if planning to travel long distances? Katie drama frets over running out of charge. She used an iPhone app to locate a charging station, but seemed annoyed when the power plug outlet she was expecting wasn’t there. (Holding the plug. Sad face. Sad face.)

So what’s with the charging station situation? It’s going to be a while due to lack of interest? Seriously. That’s what Costco decided. Costco is pulling the plug on their charging stations Not enough drivers were using them. Some devoted electric car owners said those stations were outdated anyway, and suggested the company take advantage of a California state-funded up-grade program. But the Costco chargers are history. Well, you would think if anyone would be interested driving efficient vehicles Costco customers would.

Buyers just not sold on the electric car idea yet. It’s not just the price of the cars. Not enough power. Not enough range. And questions about car maintenance costs, vehicle longevity, and those nasty batteries. Those toxic batteries: what it takes to even make them, and what happens to them once they are dead and useless – all those heavy metal issues. Definitely not environmentally friendly. Maybe lease electric cars right now? So you can just walk away from any potential nightmare guilt free?

Talking about nightmares, isn’t there real potential to trade one tyrant for another? Why are people willing to trade “big oil” for “big electric”? Current isn’t just pulled out of the air. “Big Electric” uses a lot of coal. So how environmental is that? If you think the electric providers are your friend, wake-up. Consider the Smart Meter controversies and the energy providers’ lack of consideration, transparency, and honesty. Electric energy providers are already powerful players in politics. And they would love to drive everyone towards electric vehicles. It’s just they are sooooo concerned about energy independence and the environment, right?

Sorry, Phil. Have to go. Losing signal here in Northern California. A monster-sized Sequoia tree fell in the forest. (video of it falling) A fallen giant. Maybe put things in perspective.

So au revoir, and escargo, mon ami! Ciao.”

Cheeky? Perhaps. Somebody has to be.

(Click sidebar tag “Chic Peep” for more of Chic Peep’s life and gearhead posts)

Cruise on, Chic Peep, cruise on.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge

(Image assist from WIKI)



  1. BongoDogOwner / Nov 7 2011 3:19 am

    Chic Peep, do you have room in your car for a dog? -Bongo


  2. The Hook / Nov 7 2011 2:33 pm

    Informative and fun! I like it!


  3. The Good Greatsby / Nov 8 2011 3:38 am

    The energy debate is all so confusing. Are scientists even sure we absolutely need energy?


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