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The Race For The Future Car - (vpro backlight documentary)

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Uploaded on Jan 13, 2009

With rising temperatures and rising gas prices, cars need to become greener fast. And superficially, the large car manufacturers seem to work hard to improve the fuel efficiency of their products. But are they really? The technology to make cars much more fuel efficient already exists for decades, but it never makes it to the showroom. Why do we have to wait so long for fuel efficient vehicles?

According to Vijay Vaitheeswaran, reporter for The Economist and author of Zoom, the global race for the fuel of the future, the large manufacturers lack the power of real innovation. A lot of money is spend of development of new models, but very little is spent on real research on new fuels and new ways to propel the car of the future. Meanwhile, the large car manufacturers are lobbying hard to block regulation on fuel efficiency. But innovation is happening in the car industry. Some small companies compete in the X-prize, a new initiative which will result in a race for the most fuel efficient car next year.

Companies like Tesla Motors, where Silicon Valley entrepreneurs who made large fortunes with innovative internet companies, are stepping up to the challenge. Why are they changing their focus from the internet to the production of cars? And do they have what it takes to compete with Volkswagen, GM or Ford? Their first production car, the all electric Tesla Roadster, is received well by both analysts and consumers. The documentary features: Elon Musk, CEO and product architect of Tesla Motors: Illuminati Motor Works; Ray Lane, Prof. Dr. Uwe Grebe; Jos Dings, lobbyist for Transport & Environment Brussels.

Originally broadcasted by VPRO in 2008.
© VPRO Backlight September 2008

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vpro Metropolis: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpna...
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vpro 3voor12 extra (music stories): https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtgV...
www.vprobroadcast.com

Credits:
Director/research: Martijn Kieft
Producer: Miriam Bos
Commissioning Editors: Jos de Putter/ Doke Romeijn
English, French and Spanish subtitles: Ericsson.
French and Spanish subtitles are co-funded by European Union.

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