Saturday, December 24, 2016
This documentary on the resurgence of the electric car is fascinating and extremely well done. The highlight of this doc is that it demonstrates the sort of person it takes to push a new idea into production. It follows Robert Lutz at GM as he green-lights the Volt, Carlos Ghosn at Nissan as he bets significant company resources on the Leaf, and of course, Musk at Tesla. The videographers are there at critical times such as when GM declares bankruptcy and Musk is down to his last $3 million (which is essentially zero in the car business.) It is must watching for anyone remotely interested in the complexities facing anyone interested in electrifying the transportation fleet. Spoiler alert—it will be a BIG job. And yes, it will only succeed if real Producers win the day. In Detroit, Producers are called "car guys" and the Predators are called "bean counters." Lutz should know—he wrote the book.
It also covers the fallout of the financial meltdown of 2007-8—a pointed reminder that no matter how clever, car companies are in the economic hands of people who do nothing but manipulate money. Whether these manipulators are are honest or fraudulent is pretty much irrelevant because when they screw up, they can take some brilliant projects down with them.
A direct link to the Youtube page. This thing runs 90 minutes but yes, I have watched the whole thing.