Feeds

GM sees future: Cars and drivers full of booze

Autopilot alcomobiles for drunk drivers

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Frequent recharges are a serious problem for most battery cars because charging takes such a long time - typically several hours. (At least one new technology claims to have cracked this, but it's not yet widely available on the road.)

Since the demise of the EV1, the main poster-child for all-battery cars has been the Tesla Roadster, and many still have high hopes for the snazzy electric supercar. However, there have recently been delays to delivery and boardroom battles at Tesla Motors. The initial cars are now to be delivered "with a few components, such as the transmission, that will need to be upgraded at a later date."

Electric cars also have the same problem as hydrogen ones - that they would need loads of new juice from somewhere. On the other hand, they are often favoured by greens as it is thought that the batteries of unused, plugged-in vehicles could act as a reservoir of stored energy for the power grid, smoothing out surges in supply and demand.

For its part, GM isn't going fully electric again in a hurry. Wagoner says it will bring out its Chevy Volt - a petrol-electric hybrid with a big enough battery to usefully use mains power - by 2010, though he said it would be a "stretch" to achieve that date.

The one new car thing that the motor colossus seems confident it can do soon is make a car which drives itself, at least some of the time. This isn't green, but it would obviously be a boon.

"Autonomous driving means that someday you could do your email, eat breakfast, do your makeup, and watch a video while commuting to work," Wagoner said in a speech at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES).

Or get drunk and let the car drive you home, of course. Though it would be unwise to swig E85 siphoned from the tank; it's 15 per cent petrol.

"In other words, you could do all the things you do now... safely," said Wagoner, puckishly.

Apparently, GM boffins reckon they could have hands-off, booze-friendly cars ready for 2018. ®

*Others believe that such cars should also be able to run on methanol blends, saying that methanol can be made from non-food sources right now.

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
MEN: For pity's sake SLEEP with LOTS of WOMEN - and avoid Prostate Cancer
And, um, don't sleep with other men. If that's what worries you
Voyager 1 now EIGHTEEN LIGHT HOURS from home
Almost 20 BEEELION kilometres from Sol
Jim Beam me up, Scotty! WHISKY from SPAAACE returns to Earth
They're insured for $1m, before you thirsty folks make plans
ROGUE SAIL BOAT blocks SPACE STATION PODULE blastoff
Er, we think our ISS launch beats your fishing expedition
NASA: Spacecraft crash site FOUND ON MOON RIM
'What fun!' exlaims NASA boffin who found the LADEE
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
BAE points electromagnetic projectile at US Army
Railguns for 'Future fighting vehicle'
OK Google, do I have CANCER?
Company talks up pill that would spot developing tumors
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
A strategic approach to identity relationship management
ForgeRock commissioned Forrester to evaluate companies’ IAM practices and requirements when it comes to customer-facing scenarios versus employee-facing ones.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
How to simplify SSL certificate management
Simple steps to take control of SSL certificates across the enterprise, and recommendations centralizing certificate management throughout their lifecycle.