The Takeaway

Supercharging Battery Technology

Thursday, March 19, 2015

With so many advancements in technology, there's still one essential component of most our gadgets that hasn't seen a significant upgrade in a surprisingly long time: The battery.

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Transportation Nation

New Jersey Kicks Tesla to the Curb

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

New Jersey's Motor Vehicle Commission adopted a new rule banning the direct sales of automobiles in the state—delivering a blow to electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla.

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Transportation Nation

Has Tesla Motors Made It To the Big Time?

Friday, August 09, 2013

Electric car maker Tesla Motors is turning a profit. Sales of the Model S are up to 8.4 percent of the U.S. luxury car market, beating out offerings from Audi, BMW and Mercedes. So, is Tesla a real force in the auto world? 

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Money Talking

Saturday Coffee Table: Google Fiber and Who's On the Time 100

Friday, April 19, 2013

Money Talking host Charlie Herman and WNYC contributor Rana Foroohar with Time magazine review what they’re reading this weekend. 



Transportation Nation

Romney Hits Obama on Big-Ticket Green Car Loans

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Mitt Romney (Romney Campaign photo)

Mitt Romney is making the Obama administration's support for two high-end green car companies a campaign issue.

"The Obama administration has shoveled $1 billion out the door to two California-based electric car manufacturers. Fisker Automotive got a $529 million loan from the Department of Energy; Tesla got $465 million," Romney penned in an op-ed in the Orange County Register.

Romney's op-ed follows a Center for Public Integrity/ABC News investigation into the loans.  That investigation found production problems at the politically-connected high-end "green" car companies, Tesla and Fisker.

The facts present an opening for Romney, who writes:

"Fisker investors, including Al Gore himself, have donated more than $1 million to political campaigns – primarily Democrats. Tesla, for its part, has financial backing from a fundraiser who bundled hundreds of thousands of dollars for the President's campaign; Tesla's CEO is also a major Democratic donor who has poured money into Obama's campaign coffers."

But perhaps the most searing for the administration: "Tesla's next vehicle is expected to list for $57,400. Fisker's car, already a year behind schedule, will cost $97,000."


The Obama administration is defending the loans, saying they'll be used to create jobs in Delaware and California, not Finland, and that the funds are for mass-market sedans -- not high-end cars.

But the optics are bad.   President Obama is busy on the trail promoting his image as a populist fighter for blue-collar auto workers.  The last thing his administration wants is to be defending loans to well-connected European companies that produce high-end cars.  Ouch, ouch, and ouch.

You can bet Romney keeps his rapier sharpened on this one.


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Transportation Nation

WEDNESDAY: Personal Car-Sharing on the Takeaway

Thursday, March 31, 2011

When you really think about it, you probably don't use your car all that much.  You drive to work – then leave your car in the lot all day while you’re inside. Or you leave town for a few days – then don’t use your car for the next three weeks. Meanwhile, plenty of other people don’t have cars, but sometimes need them.

Three new companies in the San Francisco Bay Area – Getaround, RelayRides, and Spride Share – are trying to match those idle cars with people who want to drive them. Each model is a little different, but the basic idea is the same: when you’re not using your car, you can rent it out to anyone who needs it. And if you need a car? You can rent anything from your neighbor's station wagon to a brand-new Tesla Roadster.

Transportation Nation's Casey Miner will be on The Takeaway this  morning to talk about personal car-sharing-- listen below! And catch her full story later that day on KALW News.

Follow Transportation Nation on Twitter.

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Transportation Nation

Can I Interest You in a Car, Congressman?

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

(Washington, DC - David Schultz, WAMU News) Car dealerships, as downtown businesses go, aren't great neighbors.  They bring grease-stained service centers, and large, open asphalt lots to blocks.  At night, they turn strips of development into dark, foot traffic-free areas.  Adding something like that to Washington D.C. would be unthinkable, you might think. This city guards its scenic vistas and grand avenues like some grizzlies guard their cubs.

So then why is the D.C. Mayor's office not only supporting but also facilitating a car company's bid to open a dealership on K and 11th Streets NW - right in the heart of downtown D.C., just a few blocks from the White House?

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