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Drive Electric Week kicks off today with nearly 300 online and in-person events celebrating electric vehicles. Events will be held for the next two weekends, from September 23 through October 2, in the US, Canada, and Mexico.

Drive Electric Week is an annual event organized by Plug In AmericaElectric Auto AssociationEVHybridNoire, and Sierra Club. This is the event’s 12th year. It started in the US as National Drive Electric Week, but for the last few years, events have been hosted in various other parts of the globe as well.

These events are an opportunity for prospective EV buyers to talk directly with EV owners about the experience of owning an electric car. The dealership experience is not ideal for a lot of EV shoppers, so unfiltered conversations with EV owners can be a great way to learn.

Events are organized by local EV advocates and range in size from small parking lot meetups and local EV parades to large festivals with lots of booths from car dealers and green businesses. Although, this year, some dealers might be less enthusiastic about remote sales events due to ongoing vehicle shortages caused by the pandemic-related global chip shortage. Be sure to check each individual event page to see if there’s any information on what cars might be available for test drives.

Drive Electric Week has a map and list of events this week, including designations for online and in-person events, or search for events near you.

For the last couple of years, Drive Electric Week has been a little subdued due to the global COVID pandemic. In 2020 all events were shifted to online, with in-person events returning in 2021. Most events are outdoors, and attendees were encouraged to follow COVID guidelines.

2022 continues in the same vein – there are some events online, but most in-person events are back this year. While there are no unified COVID requirements across all events and most will be outdoors anyway, attendees should take steps to reduce COVID spread as appropriate.

Online events include seminars and interviews with experts discussing various aspects of EVs along with virtual test drives of cars. There will be seminars on charging, V2X and V2G, upcoming EVs, solar EV charging, and other general introductory programs. There are also a number of events discussing local EV issues – like in Hawaii, Michigan, and Rhode Island.

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Battery powered trailer boost range, efficiency — now for $120,000 less

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Battery powered trailer boost range, efficiency — now for 0,000 less

The RA electric trailer from Range Energy promises to turn your diesel truck into a hybrid or extend the range of your electric semi – and now it qualifies for a $120,000 voucher in California.

California’s Clean Off-Road Equipment (CORE) Voucher Project aims to make it easier for commercial fleets to decarbonize. Last July, Range became the first trailer electrification platform to be accepted into CORE with an $80,000 rebate.

This year, Range Energy bumped its largest battery offering to 300 kWh. The state, in turn, showed its confidence in the electric trailer concept by bumping that rebate a full 50%.

“Becoming eligible for CORE proved that trailers truly matter in the transition to electric, and that CARB recognizes the meaningful impact electric-powered trailers can have on reducing the emissions of the commercial trucking sector,” said Ali Javidan, founder and CEO of Range. “Increasing our trailer platform’s incentive value by $40,000 further solidifies that position and makes Range a realistic near-term solution for fleet owners and operators.”

The company claims the Range Energy electric trailers can double a trucks’ fuel economy and slash its NOx emissions by as much as 67%. When we last covered Range, its electric trailer system had just undergone independent testing that found a 36% real-world improvement on a 25-mile urban/high loop at 60 mph top speeds with a 59,000 lb. gross vehicle weight (well below the 80,000 lb. maximum).

Electrek’s Take

Image via Range Energy.

It’s great to see concepts like this electric trailer come into play with some government dollars behind them. If they work (and if their weight penalties don’t hurt shippers’ profit margins), they’ll make it real easy for truck fleets to dip their toes into the waters of electrification while hydrogen and batteries battle it out for ultimate supremacy.

I’m betting batteries, for what it’s worth – but Range Energy customers will be able to put their electric trailers to work behind either!

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Quick Charge Podcast: February 26, 2024

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Quick Charge Podcast: February 26, 2024

Listen to a recap of the top stories of the day from Electrek. Quick Charge is available now on Apple PodcastsSpotifyTuneIn and our RSS feed for Overcast and other podcast players.

New episodes of Quick Charge are recorded Monday through Thursday and again on Saturday. Subscribe to our podcast in Apple Podcast or your favorite podcast player to guarantee new episodes are delivered as soon as they’re available.

Stories we discuss in this episode (with links):

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You won’t believe who bought almost $1 million worth of Tesla Roadsters

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You won't believe who bought almost  million worth of Tesla Roadsters

In a surprising turn of events, we now learn that billionaire Dan O’Dowd bought the 3 Tesla Roadsters that were lost in a Chinese port for over a decade.

Last year, we reported on a strange story of three brand-new Tesla Roadsters that were found inside a shipping container in China.

It appears that a Chinese company bought the Roadster back in 2011 with the hope of reverse-engineering them. However, the shipment was blocked by customs in China and the vehicles never made it to the company.

Last year, someone finally was able to get them and ship them to the US.

Tesla ever only produced just over 2,000 original Roadsters between 2008 and 2011, making them rare in the first place.

On top of the usual unit you lose to accidents and time, Roadsters had a few bad luck incidents, including losing dozens of units to two separate fires at Gruber Motors, which specializes in fixing first-generation Tesla Roadsters.

It makes the remaining ones more valuable, and ironically, Gruber was leading the auction for the lost Roadsters.

At one point, the company claimed that the three Roadsters together would go for over $1 million.

Almost a year later, we now know who bought them.

Dan of the popular YouTube channel What’s Inside got an exclusive look at the Roadsters – giving us a great look at this little piece of EV history:

Dan revealed Dan O’Dowd, the billionaire founder of Green Hills Software, is the new owner of the Roadster.

To Tesla fans, O’Dowd is better known as the guy running the Dawn Project, which is basically a campaign against Tesla’s Full Self-Driving effort.

It could be surprising, considering how consistently O’Dowd has been attacking Tesla and Elon Musk, but he is apparently a fan of Tesla vehicles other than its Autopilot and FSD Beta, which the Roadster is not equipped with anyway.

He already owns a couple of Roadsters, according to What’s Inside’s video.

Now, if you are familiar with What’s Inside, you know that they tend to cut through things to find out what’s inside them, but obviously, Dan won’t be doing that with these Roadsters. The video is still a great look at what could be some of the best-preserved Roadsters on the planet.

Also, we now learn how much O’Dowd paid for the Roadsters.

Carl Medlock of Medlock and Sons, an independent Tesla repair shop, helped O’Dowd in the purchase and confirmed that the billionaire paid $800,000 for the three Roadsters.

That’s well below the up to $2 million offers that Gruber teased. In fact, Medlock claims that the only other big serious offer was for $500,000.

Regardless, at an average of over $250,000 per Roadster, it makes them some of the most valuable Roadsters to date.

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