Tuesday, January 22, 2008

DC Auto Show 2008

Went to the DC Car Show (er, s'cuse me, The Washington Auto Show today, to take in the media preview - which consists of lots of press conferences, lots of picture-taking opportunities, and a pretty good catered luncheon.

I got to meet with some of the top brass from GM and managed to charm my way into them letting me drive one of the way-nifty hydrogen-powered Chevy Equinox vehicles.

For those who don't know, Hydrogen power is the King Badass of all green automotive technology. Screw hybrids, be they petrol or diesel, only hydrogen (and plug-in electrics) give absolute zer0-emissions. Plug-in electric cars are neat, in a glorified golf cart sort of way, but the advantage of a fuel cell vehicle is range.

I was offered a drive (not "ride", but drive, as in they gave me the keys and off we went) following a press conference this morning. Motoring around the streets in downtown DC, it drove... just like a car. It accelerates, brakes, corners, and handles the road, just like its petrol-powered counterpart. The only thing missing, really, was engine sound. The vehicle is almost entirely silent.

I pulled up at a stop light next to a Prius, and stuck my tongue out at its driver. Felt good.

There's more stuff to tell, but I'm compiling photos and writing up a bunch right now. Whatever doesn't make it onto AE soon, I'll post here.

In other random notes...

Heath Ledger just joined Brad Renfro on the list of actors who Just Couldn't Handle Themselves. Tragic, I think. I didn't really care for either one as an actor, really, but tragic when anyone ODs and dies. Apparently, Amy Winehouse isn't far behind, with her Homemade Crack Testing Kit all over Youtube. And so far, in 2008, at least 10 people have been killed while crossing railroad tracks.

Evolution, it seems, is a very slow process... But a sure one.

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