The environment-conscious Japanese are about to receive another treat: electric sports cars. Recently, I wrote something about electric cars hitting the market in the very near future. Now, it’s more than these Japanese electric cars that is getting me (and a lot of other people) excited.
Tesla Motors Inc. has announced its plans to launch one of their electric sports cars in Japan! Tesla is an American car maker that specializes in electric vehicles. According to their official statement, they are launching the Roadster early next month. That’s pretty soon, especially since we’re almost at the end of April!
This is a big move by the American car maker, as Japan is well known to protect its domestic industries, and Mitsubishi and July are also releasing their own electric vehicles this year. While it means stiff competition for the car makers, it means more choices for the Japanese people.
The Roadster is a high-end sports car – a two-seater right-hand drive. Its rate of acceleration is 0 to 100 kilometers per hour in 3.7 seconds. For an electric vehicle, that is not bad. Not bad at all!
The only drawback to Tesla’s Roadster is that the price will be about double the selling price in the United States. It’s currently selling for USD 101,500 (9.4 million yen) in the United States, and it will go for about 18 million yen when released in Japan. That is quite a considerable sum, ensuring that the Roadster will probably not be a common sight on the roads.
Posted April 23rd, 2010 by Maki+ | Comments (3)
Here’s something else that the Japanese nation can be proud of: 18-year-old Eri Yoshida is going to play pro ball in the United States! The pitcher learned knuckleball with Tim Wakefield, the Red Sox right-hander, during spring training. That in itself is something else!
Next month, Yoshida will be living the life which is only a dream to many – both male and female. She has signed her contract with Chico Outlaws of the Golden Baseball League. She will be joining their training camp in May. Believe it or not, she isn’t the first woman to pitch professionally for the U.S. Prior to Yoshida, there was Ila Borders, who has been retired for more or less 10 years now.
What does the young girl have to say about all this? Yoshida says that she is “grateful for this opportunity. This is a dream come true for me and I hope I can contribute to the team and help them win and also to continue to improve as a pro baseball player.”
Indeed, this is something that does not happen everyday. Yoshida is a mere five feet tall and 114 pounds (although you don’t really have to be physically big to play pro baseball) and might be taken lightly by unbelievers. The team is quite excited to have her play, though, and fans even more so.
Despite the odds, things are looking good for this young baseball player. She has a good track record and at her age, she has so much to look forward to.
Posted April 10th, 2010 by Maki+ | Comment (1)
It’s not really a surprise, is it? After all, the Japanese people are known to be very conscious when it comes to the environment. With electric cars poised to be one of the major solutions to the carbon emission problem, it is quite logical that they will make it big in the Japanese market. We also have to consider the fact that electric cars involve a lot of advance technology, and this nation is also well known for that.
Last week, the first mass-market electric car was launched in Japan. The brainchild of big brand Mitsubishi, the car is called i-MiEV. It is shaped like a bubble (yeah, like something from the future), and it costs 2.8 million yen. That’s roughly $30,000. This price is not the original selling price, though. In fact, the price will only go down to that amount (from 4 million yen or $43,000) after you take into consideration government incentives.
This brings me to another point – the importance of government action in encouraging people to become more environmentally-aware. Who would want to purchase a car that is so much more expensive and maybe not as well-performing as the “good old fuel” cars? With such incentives in place, however, the playing field is somehow leveled.
Mitsubishi is not the only Japanese automaker that is offering an electric car. Nissan has its Leaf, which it is already taking orders for. This car is much cheaper at around $25,000. Needless to say, other car makers are already rolling out plans to join the fray.
Posted April 4th, 2010 by Maki+ | Comments (2)