Plug It In, Drive It Off

Chrysler introduces an electric van that can hit 65 on the freeway

IN THEORY, AN ELECTRIC CAR IS AN IDEA OF BLINDing brilliance. Since such cars are powered by batteries, not internal combustion engines, there are no noxious emissions and no need for gasoline. Gas stations soon disappear, as do refineries and their occasional unhappy by-products, oil spills and groundwater pollution. Electric cars are easy on the ears since they make virtually no noise. Refueling? Drive up to a handy 220-volt electrical outlet, plug in and charge up.

Auto-industry critics have long complained that manufacturers, slavishly wedded to the status quo, have never given electric cars a chance. No longer. Chrysler says it...

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