In grade school we had book reviews or book reports as they called them. Sometime around first or second grade I did one on a book about electric cars. The book covered a brief history of the machines and talked about some of their advantages and disadvantages.
In the end my natural conclusion was “these things suck.” Such is the opinion of a youngster who perceives noiseless, combustion-free transportation as lame. There’s no explosion, there’s no gas station, maybe most important, there’s no high speed car chases.
But so much for all that. These days the electric cars look better and better. They’re making advances on the speed issue.* The noiseless and combustion-free aspects are godsends. They can be made less expensive and more robust than traditional automobiles, not to mention smaller and more dependable.
The battery issues are also being examined, but how hard would it be to replace gas stations with automated battery swap centers? Don’t got time to charge? Swap out your cells for a convenient low price. It’ll be some time before they reclaim the roads, but it seems if we want to continue to use autonomous transportation they are the best solution. Even hydrogen fuel cells would be better off in a generation environment than in a mobile transporter.
*The speed issue is rather important to consider on its own, so I’ll try to throw another shortpost up soon about that one.