Letter from the Editor
Resenting Chinese Government and Companies is a Waste of Energy

For anyone (such as Bob Lutz) who thinks that making partnership alliances with Chinese companies is bad for America, it’s probably a good idea to let that idea go. Lutz, a Florida Congressman, and two U.S. senators have questioned whether battery-maker A123 Systems should receive the rest of its government grant in light of a deal with a Chinese firm to invest in the faltering company. Wanxiang Group may very well invest up to $450 in A123 Systems and take an 80% ownership stake in the battery maker. Expecting transparency and accountability to those receiving federal loans and grants makes much sense, but criticizing involvement with the Chinese government or companies is a lost cause – just ask General Motors, Ford, Volvo, and other major automakers with ownership stakes in Chinese companies, or vice versa.

Investment by Chinese firms in companies like A123 Systems and Protean Electric, and electric car product lineups being rolled out by companies like BYD, have much to do with Chinese government policies pushing for green vehicles and technologies and renewable energy sources.. Sales of electric vehicles haven’t gone very far yet in China – taxi fleets and other niches are taking them on. Consumers are only gaining limited interest in the government incentives offered, and in taking on an EV for possibly their very first car ever.

In this issue, check out the video interview with Curtis Martin, Program Coordinator for Antelope Valley Clean Cities Coalition, on the weekly Clean Cities web-based radio show on advanced vehicle technology and alternative fuels. And read the article right below the videos on the “Clean Across America & Back 2012 CNG Road Trip” that Martin is part of making happen.


Video News & Views
People & Ideas to Watch
Clean Cities Radio

Curtis Martin, Program Coordinator for Antelope Valley Clean Cities Coalition, describes the weekly Clean Cities web-based radio show that provides much-needed information and education on the advancement of alternative fuels and petroleum reduction.

Clean Cities Radio
CURTIS MARTIN Program Coordinator, Antelope Valley Clean Cities Coalition
Bringing Wireless Charging to Market
ANTHONY THOMSON VP Business Development & Marketing, Qualcomm
Most Compelling Fuel Economics
SAM THOMAS CEO, Chart Industries
Education and Awareness

CNG Road Trip Aimed at Raising Public Awareness


To grow public awareness and support for alternative fuel vehicles, especially the compressed natural gas infrastructure, a husband and wife team will drive their 2009 Honda Civic GX from Los Angeles to Atlantic City, N.J., using public access refueling stations, both there and back. Antelope Valley Clean Cities Coalition and online natural gas vehicle owner’s community have partnered to organize “Clean Across America & Back 2012 CNG Road Trip.” With the 13,000 member, there’s an opportunity for this road trip to become a caravan of CNG vehicles through stages of the trip. It will launch on or around Oct. 12, 2012 in the Los Angeles area at an Odyssey Day 2012 press event. Husband and wife team of Gary and Evelyn Corbitt will arrive in Indianapolis on Oct. 18 at the national launch event for National AFV Odyssey Day 2012, ending up in Atlantic City, N.J. for a press event organized by New Jersey Clean Cities Coalition. The westbound return trip will start on Oct. 23rd, and end back in California at another ceremony/press event.

A Civic GX cross-country road trip was last done in 1998, as a promotion for the 1998 Honda Civic GX. This time, the road trip is well positioned to promote the advantages offered by owning and operating vehicles powered by clean, domestic fuels, such as compressed natural gas. The event will be tied into the national kick-off press event for National Alternative Fuels Odyssey Day 2012, in Indianapolis, IN, and participate in CNG related press events across the country. All activities and press events will be done in coordination with Clean Cities Coalitions in various cities throughout the country. For more information, contact Curtis Martin, Program Coordinator, AV Clean Cities Coalition at 661-492-5916 and view the website at

News: Need to Know
Posawatz Brings Chevy Volt Experience to Troubled Fisker Automotive

Fisker Automotive has recruited another industry veteran to guide it through troubled waters. Tony Posawatz is the new CEO, after 25 years with General Motors and an important role in the design of the Chevy Volt. He replaces Tom LaSorda, who previous served as Chrysler’s CEO, and put in less than a year as Fisker’s CEO. Posawatz has a full plate as the company goes through yet another safety crises after a second plug-in hybrid luxury car, Karma, unexpectedly caught fire recently.

Fisker Automotive is struggling to put together move the product through the pipeline, and come up with the cash it needs to launch its second model, the Atlantic. Posawatz is excited about being part of a team bringing to market what he calls the “true answer to the propulsion technology of the future.”


Republican Senators Challenge DOE Grants Being Allowed for A123

Republican Senators John Thune and Chuck Grassley wrote a letter to Energy Secretary Steven Chu this week questioning whether battery-maker A123 Systems should receive the rest of its government grant as the deal comes together with China’s Wanxiang Group. Corp. investing in A123. This occurred not long after U.S. Representative Cliff Stearns, a Florida Republican. Stearns, author of a pending bill intended to prevent more situations like the Solyndra scandal, said that A123’s financing arrangement with Wanxiang raises possible security concerns.

The proposed deal between A123 and Wanxiang has drawn the attention of critics of the Obama administration’s green company investments.


Building Infrastructure

Intertek Whitepapers Cover Latest in EV Battery Technologies and Industry Standards


Tim Hubbard, regional vice president global automotive – electric vehicle for Intertek, spoke to Automotive Digest at EVS26 in Los Angeles earlier this year, and explained what needs to be studied and analyzed when accurate industry standards for EV batteries are being written. Intertek is a provider of quality and safety solutions serving a wide range of industries around the world. Hubbard and his colleagues work with clients to minimize the adverse health and environmental impact of their products and processes “for the benefit of society as a whole,” the company says. From auditing and inspection, to testing, quality assurance and certification, Intertek provides expertise, resources, and global reach to support its customers through its network of more than 1,000 laboratories and offices and over 30,000 people in more than 100 countries around the world.

As electric vehicles, their battery systems, and charging networks are being developed and implemented around the world, companies like Intertek are playing a critical role in educating key players and making sure international standards are being accurately adopted as these new technologies come to market. Three whitepapers offer a comprehensive look at the resources Intertek offers, covering new battery technologies, wireless charging, and modeling and simulation. (You can click on the links below to read the whitepaper report.)

Battery Technologies – A General Overview & Focus on Lithium-Ion

Wireless Power – Cutting the Cord on Electric Vehicles

Modeling the Lithium-Ion Battery

Effort to Gain Employer Support for EV Charging Stations Kicks Off at Google HQ


Held at Google’s Mountain View, Calif., campus, CALSTART recently hosted a workshop aimed at bringing electric vehicle charging infrastructure to workplaces throughout the state. Keynoted by U.S. Dept. of Energy representatives, David Sandalow, Acting Undersecretary of Energy and Asst. Secretary for Policy and International Affairs, and Dr. David Danielson, Asst. Secretary, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, the event served as the starting point for what CALSTART aims to make a nationwide campaign to engage employers in the effort to expand the electric vehicle market.

“Employers can serve as the ‘cavalry’ of the EV movement, ” said CALSTART President and CEO, John Boesel. “By installing chargers at the workplace, employers can help extend the effective daily range of an electric vehicle. Electricity is a new fuel that is particularly easy for an employer to support. We are excited about the many employers who want to be leaders in the effort to clean our air and reduce the nation’s dependence on oil.”

The new CALSTART program, The EV Employer Initiative, is focused on supporting existing firms who want to expand their workplace charging efforts, and help other firms learn about the best practices and ways to implement such programs. By implementing EV programs in the workplace, CALSTART says, employers are supporting the EV industry by doing the following:

  • Extending the effective range of EV’s by allowing a second full charge during work hours;
  • Acting as “showrooms” where employees can see cars being driven to work and learn about them from their colleagues.

Stakeholder Editorial Advisory Group
  Green Automotive Digest Stakeholder Editorial Advisory Group

Green Machine Digest2

GAD is receiving valuable feedback, news, insights, perspectives, and education from its Stakeholder Editorial Advisory Group:

• Christopher Ashcraft, Clean Cities Coordinator, Alamo Area Council of Governments
• Pat Charla, Limousine Environmental Action Partners; and Clean Vehicle Solutions
• Stephen Ellis, American Honda Motor Co.
• Brett Hauser, EV Connect
• Curtis Martin, Coordinator, Antelope Valley Clean Cities
• Jake Millan, Propel Fuels
• Richard Okida, Toyota Financial Services
• Chuck Parker, Automotive Digest
• Hugh Sears, Toyota Financial Services
• Craig Shields,
• Richard Steinhaus, Coordinator, Long Beach Clean Cities Coalition
• Greg Tabak, Enterprise Holdings
• Michael Taylor, Propane Research & Education Council
• Peter Ward, Alternative Fuels Advocates, LLC
• Forest Williams, Liberty PlugIns

Events, Webinars, Studies, Etc.

The Marx Group on Effective Green Marketing in Aftermarket

The Marx Group  

Everybody talks about being “green” in their business practices and consumers often say they want to buy “green” products. But the disparity between talk and action is often wide.

One of the greenest segments of the automotive aftermarket is the remanufacturing industry. For remanufacturers, green is an 80-year old message and one that industry trade associations are good at promoting. Through educational flyers, the Automotive Parts Remanufacturing Association (APRA) emphasizes the number of American “green” jobs and the environmental benefits derived from remanufacturing.

The green messages are: 1) Remanufacturing Creates Jobs – Good Jobs! and 2) Remanufacturing is the Solution to Energy and Material Conservation.

The Automotive Aftermarket Industry Association (AAIA) campaign tells the aftermarket green story. Go to to find out more and to download materials.

Even if your company is not a remanufacturer, “green” is something you should embrace and can offer a huge selling point when telling your story. A look at all your business practices may uncover environmental strengths within your company, such as the use of recycled parts or renewable resources.

Keep in mind that the “green” message can be used to attract socially-conscious young people who are looking for jobs that support the green cause. It can also create goodwill with customers and build awareness of your products.

To help you go green, The Marx Group invites you to download a green marketing worksheet at:

Seventh Annual AltCar Expo Coming Up in Late September

AltCar Expo  

Explore the largest collection of hydrogen, electric and natural gas vehicles available to fleets on the West Coast at the 7th Annual Alternative Energy and Transportation (AltCar) Expo’s “Focus on Fleets” conference from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday Sept. 28, 2012. The consumer-focused side of AltCar Expo will take place the next day, Saturday, Sept. 29. The conference and exhibition has been well attended and an extensive presentation of across the board alternative technology vehicles, alternative transportation, urban planning, energy efficiency, and carbon footprint reduction options education. Alternative transportation experts will share ways to use less energy and reduce carbon footprints without making significant lifestyle changes.

NAFA, along with the Municipal Equipment Maintenance Association (MEMA) will host a frank discussion of the main challenges facing fleets, highlighting the need for funding, the challenge of vehicle availability, and registering vehicles with the Air Resources Board—a hot topic among fleet managers. The fleet conference features representatives from municipal fleets, state regulatory agencies, and other experts in the field. The Expo is open to the general public Saturday, September 29 at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium, 1855 Main Street in Santa Monica. For further information, visit or call (310) 390-2930.

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