Set the way-back machine to the 1950s. We had unleashed the power of the atom and stood in awe of the god-like results. Atomic energy would be the fuel of the future, running everything from toasters to trains. It was a sexy new science full of potential.
No energy is truly free. In regards to nuclear power, it was far too costly to comprehend. Drop that atomic toaster and ruin the neighborhood, crash a nuclear train and annihilate a city. That we still use nuclear energy is testament to its potential. That we utilize it in such select, highly controlled conditions is testament to our technical adolescence.
I see the same thing happening with electric cars. It's a sexy new science with heaps of potential. Is it really? In truth, electric cars have been around longer that atomic energy, a lot longer. Electric cars ain't new at all. Why all the sudden interest?
If the premise of being able to plug in a car and then drive for the next 8 hours sounds too good to be true, it's because it is. We lack the technical language necessary to make that happen. Battery science has progressed slowly compared to other technologies. We are stuck trying to cram tons of energy into a small space. And then you need to be able to restore that energy multiple times. And what happens if the battery cell fails or is damaged? Have you ever seen a 2200 mah li-po battery (about the size of a Snickers bar) punctured ? It releases its energy with hand grenade-like force. I'd hate to see one let loose in a car.
I'm not against electric cars at all. I simply think there are more efficient power plants out there, technologies we could utilize right now.