California startup Coulomb Technologies is looking to pepper the country with thousands of public power stations for electric vehicles to juice up at. Does it feel too early for the all-electric future? Maybe, but apparently sales are picking up — 19,000 people have already preordered Nissan's Leaf.
To help encourage people to get behind the wheel of an electric vehicle, Coulomb wants to install 1,000 terminals across nine American cities as part of its ChargePoint America program. An additional 3,600 will follow and be in place by late 2011.
The one big thing that electric vehicles don't have right now that gas guzzlers do is infrastructure. If you're running out of gas, you can just pull into a station. Running out of charge on your car's electric battery, though, would you know what to do? In the future — the very near future, if Coulomb keeps going and electric vehicles sales take off — you could simply find a place to plug your car into the grid.
That really seems to be the missing piece here. If an electric vehicle was as easy to use as ye olde combustion cars, then why not go with them?