L.A. Electric Motors: Too Good to Be True?

Like a lot of people interested in green cars, I recently saw a press release from a company called L.A. Electric Motors. They announced that they had a “total electric SUV.” The 5-seat Testament has, according to the release, lithium-ion batteries, and can go 70 mph with a range of 350 miles per charge. The company claims to have a web showroom with physical locations on the way, but the link to the site didn’t work.

With claims like that, I was a bit suspicious. Now that green cars and alternative fuels are in the public eye, we have to watch out for outrageous claims from companies that seem unlikely to deliver. I mean, the Tesla Roadster gets 244 miles per charge from its Li-ion batteries, more than almost any EV out there right now, and look how long its taken to get those cars on the road–with a placeholder transmission, no less.

My radar really went up when I noticed that the company wanted to save consumers from “ever flocculating gas prices.” Further investigation turned up a web site URL that didn’t go anywhere and an email address that bounced back when I asked for more information.

So keep your skeptic hats on, readers. Many fantastic-sounding breakthroughs are real (remember when veggie diesel was funny? Now it’s a booming business), but if it sounds downright miraculous, do a little research before you repeat it as gospel. And if you see anything that makes you cock an eyebrow and say, “Really?” pass it on to me in the comments. I’d be happy to look into it and share what I find.

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