So says Huffington Post columnist Edward Humes. Calling Chrysler the weakest of the three U.S. automakers, he says:
Let’s buy its manufacturing capacity, parts supply network and manpower and turn it into the National Electric Car Company. Clean house at the top, and put a guy like Professor Andy Frank of the University of California-Davis in charge of product development, a true environmental hero and inventor who knows more about converting existing Detroit iron into clean, mean hybrid electric vehicles than anyone in the country.
Frank is widely-recognized as a pioneer of plug-in hybrid vehicle technology, working with his team of students on a series of vehicles for the Futurecar, Futuretruck and Challenge X competitions. In 2006, he established a start-up company, Efficient DriveTrains Inc., to commercialize his inventions.
UC Davis also now hosts the Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle Center, funded by the California Energy Commission to carry out research on consumer response to these vehicles, their environmental impacts and plug-in technology.