Where in the world is the Honda Fit EV? This week the brain trust at Google and Stanford University are playing with the four-wheeled gadget, after the city of Torrance first got its bureaucratic hands on it.
The Honda Electric Vehicle Demonstration Program continues to trickle down into the hands of some very select people. At Google, its employees will drive the Fit EV as part of its G-Fleet, a car-sharing service comprised of other electric, plug-in, and not-evil vehicles. It’s not just a free ride for Google’s employees, though. When they’re not busy taking over the world they’ll be expected to track vehicle usage including CO2 reduction, energy consumption, and overall energy cost to better maximize the Fit EV’s efficiency for paying customers.
Meanwhile, Stanford University’s Automotive Research department will fulfill its year-long collaboration on the psychological and physical differences between using an electric car versus its gas-powered equivalent. Dramatic stuff. But after a year of classroom seminars and conjectures, students and professors will get to test out their theories with a real-life Fit EV and help Honda understand the needs of potential customers—and more importantly, to see if they’ll ace their senior theses.
At this rate, West Coast civilians will be able to put down a deposit on the Fit EV sometime by this summer, and the Fit EV will complete its reverse-Oregon-Trail expedition eastward by 2013. If you do buy a Fit EV don’t be surprised if Google already knows exactly where you’ve been, or what’s in your trunk.