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Better Place rival says Thornley’s venture was always doomed

The boss of a rival firm to Evan Thornley’s corporate catastrophe, Better Place, says the strategy was fatally flawed from the get-go:

ChargePoint Australia chief executive James Brown said he couldn’t comment on Better Place’s problems.

“Their business model is different to (sic) ours,” Brown said on Tuesday. “ We really couldn’t offer any comment whatsoever.”

He said, however, while battery swap technology could work for “high-volume, high-turnover fleets” – such as taxis, which were built with stronger parts because of their heavy workload – it was not suitable for ordinary passenger cars, which were unlikely to be manufactured to withstand the repetitive strain that would come from the frequent replacement of equipment like a battery.

“The engineering for high-volume, high-turnover fleet cars – taxis – is such that it is more able to accommodate the higher engineering specifications of a car that has a battery pulled out 5000 times over a 10-year life span, whereas your normal everyday consumer car is not necessarily engineered using the same heavy usage componentry,” Brown said…

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