America’s romance with the car lays in the balance between this century and the last. Last century oil was plentiful, this century the well is literally dry.
The hybrid cars that sip and not guzzle are the between step from gas burning muscle cars to the alternate energy cars of the future. We still don’t hear about the alternate energy cars much because development very simply is in it’s infancy. The battery powered electric cars of today are like the bag phones of early mobile phones from the 1980’s. for those that are too young to remember, picture a double size fanny pack that could only be used in limited areas because there simply were few cell towers.
Americans can hardly get excited about racing electric cars. The roar of a top fuel dragster that can eat up a quarter mile in about 4.4 seconds topping out near 335 MPH can hardly compare with the whine of accelerating servo motors. So admittedly there will be a lull during the between step of hybrids.
So what will the next generation of cars be like after hybrids? Well to be honest the technology concept probably only exists on the back of a barroom napkin. However putting the imagination to use, it would probably be a combination of solar, and a new energy source that does not use fossil fuel. The other thought was a car that would use energy at a slower rate than the during usage recharge. That would allow for unlimited distance. In other words a perpetual motion car.
The other thought would be more along the lines of the San Francisco cable cars. The roads would be embedded with nodes that could charge the cars from underneath. Powering those nodes could be windmills along the road. The technology to transfer energy from the road to the car could be as simple as light beyond what we can see, a form of radio waves or whatever. That energy would be harmless to living things unless you decided to sit on a node to warm your ass. Then you would risk getting run over by a car and that would most certainly leave a bruise.
This technology would be the so called oil company of the future. It would provide jobs as each car would need to pay to use the nodes. A proximity sensor could activate the node when the car was over it debiting the account as it charged the car. When the cars were off road the backup energy system would kick in and the car could run on battery solar power, or the good old fashion plug it in at home for a recharge.
The unused energy from the windmills could be uploaded to the power grid adding to the profit of this new company. All it takes is a little imagination to make this work. Much of this technology is around today but not all of it. So this concept would be not as far down the road as one would think. The oil companies of today most certainly have the money and now the incentive to develop this technology or risk becoming extinct.