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Electric avenue:

First rechargeable car gets mixed reviews

January 12, 1997
Web posted at: 9:00 p.m. EST

From Correspondent Charles Feldman

LOS ANGELES (CNN) -- A few weeks back, General Motors introduced the first all-electric car in modern times for lease in California and Arizona.

Route '97 -- A CNN Special Presentation, Monday at 10:30 p.m. EST


It was introduced with lots of fanfare -- which nowadays usually means high-tech and high-priced TV commercials.
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The EV1 -- in limited numbers -- is now dashing around the highways of California and Arizona, the only two places where you can lease one. At the moment, you can't buy the car -- the long-term lease, complete with some tax incentives to own a zero-emissions auto -- can set you back about $600 a month.

That doesn't include the cost of the large recharger you need at home, or the expense of adding a new power line in your house ... needed to keep the recharger from blowing all your fuses. Add about $4,000.

But this isn't so much a story about the EV1 as it is the story of Dick Cross and Charles McOllister, among the very first to lease the futuristic two-seater. They're two different drivers -- with two rather different verdicts of their pioneering cruises down Electric Avenue ...


The verdict?

cross mcollister
(Click one)


Return to CNN Interactive all week for Route '97, a series of reports from the Annual North American Auto Show. Each day we will examine another aspect of the auto industy's plans for 1997 -- including a look at the latest offerings from the Big Three.

Check back daily for these reports:

  • Tuesday, January 14: In search of safer airbags
  • Wednesday, January 15: 1997 car prices: Too high?
  • Thursday, January 16: What sold and what flopped in 1996
  • Friday, January 17: The latest showroom and concept cars


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