|October 21, 2009 - Electric cars, trucks, and other vehicles are already here in East Tennessee, and you can see
them up close and personal in Market Square this Thursday, October 22. It’s a great way to
learn how viable electric vehicles (EVs) are in our daily lives.
As the U.S. moves toward vehicles powered by electricity, educating
consumers about EVs is critical in transitioning from gas/diesel vehicles to electric
vehicles. Thus, the East Tennessee Clean Fuels Coalition (ETCFC), Knoxville Electric
Vehicle Association (KEVA), and City of Knoxville have partnered to sponsor the East
Tennessee Electric Vehicle Show.
The FREE East Tennessee Electric Vehicle Show will be held on Thursday, October 22 in Market Square
from 10am to 2:30pm.
While full-speed electric vehicles for the U.S. mass market are
not in production yet, car manufacturers such as Nissan and
Chevrolet are close to launching them here. Through a $100
million federal grant, Nissan has selected Knoxville—alongside
Nashville and Chattanooga—to be one of eleven cities in five
states where appropriate infrastructure will be constructed to
prepare for the initial release of the Nissan LEAF in 2010 (more
information can be found at www.theEVProject.com). As we
prepare for these new vehicles in East Tennessee, the event is an
ideal way to see and learn about EVs in a hands-on way.
“There is a groundswell of interest in electric vehicles because Americans are sick of the current model
of using more and more oil,” says Leslie Grossman, president of the Knoxville EV Association. “With the
cost of fuel for an electric vehicle being 70-90 percent less than today’s gasoline vehicle, we are seeing a
growing number of East Tennesseans becoming interested in converting their own cars, or buying an
EV. Imagine what happens when gas goes back to $4/gallon! What a rush it will be to drive to work and
pass up the gas stations.”
Information on what’s coming to Knoxville, Nashville, and Chattanooga through the eTec/Nissan grant
will be available at the event. This will include insight into the Nissan Leaf, recharging options, and how
to get on Nissan’s prepurchase list.
“Solar energy coupled with electric transportation is one of the promising approaches to diminish our
dependence on foreign oil,” says Stephen Levy, Director of The Tennessee Solar Energy Association
(TSEA). “And it is a tremendous opportunity for new jobs; new technologies that will recoup the energy
storage technology leadership back to the United States. TSEA will be promoting these job opportunities
in our state to fulfill the promise of making clean renewable energy a reality in the next decade.”
“The ETCFC, KEVA and the TSEA are but three examples of the many organizations in our state that are
helping to craft a new generation of educated Tennesseans so that they can make better choices about
all their energy usage, including what cars they drive and how they are refueled,” says Jonathan Overly,
Executive Director of the East Tennessee Clean Fuels Coalition. “This event is a way to kick-start the
electric vehicle education portion of all that is taking place in our region and state.”
At this event you will see the latest in EV charging infrastructure and talk with industry experts about
how electric vehicles work and recharge. The event will showcase 15 electric vehicles already in use
including various Neighborhood Electric Vehicles, personal transporters, an electric lawn mower, a
customized full-speed electric automobile, electric motorcycles, and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles
(PHEVs). ETCFC and KEVA will provide general information about electric vehicles and are a resource for
people interested in learning more about electric vehicles.
For more information about the event or the ETCFC, visit http://www.ETCleanFuels.org. For more
information about KEVA, contact Leslie Grossman at 865-679-8732 or alternatively, see their parent
organization’s website http://www.eaaev.org.
For more information about the City of Knoxville’s Energy
and Sustainability efforts, contact Erin Burns at 865-215-2065.