November 26 2008 / by joelg / In association with Future Blogger.net
Category: Energy Year: 2008 Rating: 7 Hot
By Joel Greenberg
Call it a man bites dog story for the clean energy era. German solar cell manufacturer SolarWorld recently made a bid for Opel, GM’s European car company.
Not that Opel was for sale. But it does show that at least one solar manufacturer is looking for a way to make a solar powered car.
What This Means for the Future of Energy
SolarWorld Chairman Frank H. Asbeck insists the offer is in good faith. SolarWorld is betting that GM is in bad enough shape that they’d have to sell off assets, such as European brands, making an easier entry into the automotive market for SolarWorld than having to create a car company from scratch.
More importantly, it shows that the electric vehicle market is up for grabs. SolarWorld wanted to buy a car manufacturer so that they could get a leg up on bringing an electric vehicle to market; then, they could sell the solar panels that could be used to charge it up. One solar installer consulted for the reality of solar panels powering an electric vehicle quoted an installation costing $12,000 to $15,000 to be adequate to charge up a typical electric vehicle.
Could this be a signal that cleantech could lead the way in many business deals in the future? What’s next, a bid from First Solar for Chrysler?