Thursday, July 7, 2011

GM Thinks Beyond Volt

It was reported yesterday that General Motors has signed an agreement Westport Innovations, Inc. to develop a compressed natural gas engine suitable for passenger cars.  The resulting vehicles likely would be hybrids with both CNG and regular gas tanks.  Any resulting GM product would be several years from market.

Right now, the Honda Civic is the only CNG passenger car on the market, but if the NAT GAS Act legislation passes Congress this year, we might be looking at more CNG fueling stations in the coming years, which would enable the CNG passenger car market.  GM has been out front in electric vehicles with its Volt, but this deal shows that the company is taking a "portfolio approach" to the various fuels, which is a smart move in a rapidly changing energy landscape.  Even if no GM vehicle results, the partnership would at least continue to push the ball farther down the field.

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