Will Plug-in Hybrids Undermine the Grid?



US wires are buzzing (no pun intended) with an improbable angst over whether or not the next generation of Plug-In hybrids will put disastrous strain on the already over-stretched US national grid.

The 2010 Fisker Karma (pictured) and the 2011 Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrids, among other electric-drive vehicles, are scheduled to roll out next year. The Nissan Leaf electric car (that comes without a range-extending engine) is also due for release in 2012, and will be even more reliant on plug-in power, so it’s a question worth asking.

While the Fisker is undoubtedly the nicest looking hybrid we’ve ever seen and has a chance of being sold in numbers, we doubt that even the oil-guzzling Americans are being a little hysterical over these anti-heroes of all-american motoring. Some local utility companies have however, apparently worried about the impact of “clusters of EVs in specific neighbourhoods where early adopters may live”.

Still, we suppose that the odd period of grid blackout may be a small price to pay for the atmosphere.