Lithium: The secret weapon of the auto industry?
"Lithium battery technology is being husbanded in Japan. It's like a secret weapon," GM's Bob Lutz recently told reporters at a meeting of the Western Automotive Journalists association. Thus, many Japanese companies would not bid on the battery contract for the Chevy Volt.
Mr. Lutz also criticized the U.S. government for not being as aggressive as the the Japanese government with advanced batteries. Of course, maybe the government could criticize GM and US automakers for not being as aggressive as Japanese automakers on hybrid cars.
In addition to slamming the government, Lutz also attacked CAFE, calling a gas tax a more sensible approach to reducing fuel consumption. Also, even though Lutz defended ethanol, he did admit that corn-based ethanol has some problems and he stated that cellulosic ethanol was needed.