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Talking electric cars at the Crawford Family Forum

Matt DeBord and Chris Paine


DeBord Repor blogger and "Revenge of the Electric Car" director Chris Paine talk, what else? Electric cars with a panel of experts.

I'm getting this post up late — but better late than...later. Anyway, we had a great film screening and panel discussion last week at KPCC's Crawford Family Forum. The main event was Chris Paine's "Revenge of the Electric Car," the follow-up to his hit "Who Killed the Electric Car." The evening was the result of a partnership between KPCC and Community Cinema

After the screening for a packed house, I moderated a panel discussion about the film and electric cars in general, featuring Paine, Greg "Gadget" Abbott (who appears in the documentary), Geoff Wardle — Director of Advanced Mobility Research at Art Center College of Design — and Brandy Schaffels, a senior editor at startup consumer car-buying resource TrueCar.com. You can listen the to entire discussion here.

We covered a lot of ground. The upshot is that we're all optimistic that the auto industry has finally accepted the electric car as a reality, although there remain ongoing challenges to its breakout success. At least the story in "Revenge of the Electric Car" doesn't end like "Who Killed the Electric Car," with the innovative EV1 being crushed by General Motors.


Electric car revenge in Pasadena

Mercer 12837

Bryan Mitchell, Getty Images

The Nissan Leaf prototype electric car on display during the press preview for the world automotive media North American International Auto Show in 2010.

At KPCC's Crawford Family Forum tonight, I'll be moderating a panel discussion on electric cars, right after a screening of director Chris Paine's "Revenge of the Electric Car" — the follow-up to his hit documentary, "Who Killed the Electric Car?"

Joining Chris and myself on the panel will be Geoff Wardle, the Director of Advanced Mobility Research at Art Center College of Design and a veteran of the global auto industry; and Brandy Schaffels, Senior Editor and Content Manager at TrueCar.com, a Santa Monica-based startup that provides consumers with transparent auto-buying information and industry analysis.

I'm looking forward to this event, as I used to cover the global auto industry, for Slate and CBS.com. Where the electric car is headed, now that they seem to be here to stay, is a question I think our panelists will be able to answer in lively, interesting ways.