David had always been a collector. As a kid, he collected patches from police and fire departments. Later, he wore one, along with a shiny metal badge to go with it. But, that too was years ago. Now, he was retired and had a collection of EVs. He made it as far as Assistant Chief, and came away with a very good pension. Plus, he picked up some odd consulting work. He wasn’t rich by any means, but he had enough to pursue his hobby of collecting early EVs.
Today, his cars got strange looks, and excited waves. Everyone has an EV now, but not everyone has a pristine 2014 Model S, with the nosecone and all. And how many people have a 2011 Chevy Volt with the original black trunk? Only David and a handful of friends from his VR/AR chat group, that’s who! He was particularly proud of that one, because he managed to get reproduction battery cells and keep that car all original. It’s not easy to get gasoline in 2052, but it’s fun when the terrible bark of the Voltec four-cylinder comes to life at a car show and makes kids jump.
It was a slow Sunday in November, and he wanted to take one of his favorite old cars out for a spin. He walked past an original Tesla Roadster he had recently got back from the shop for some electronics work. He got that one for cheap after a shop went up in flames decades earlier, and his Roadster was at the edge of the fire. It still had problems, but he had given it a loving restoration.
He decided to take one of his quirky air-cooled EVs out on a drive today: his all-original 2011 Nissan LEAF.
“Well, almost all original.” he whispered to himself. “The 300-mile pack sure is nice!”
He wanted to take it out to visit one of his buddies from his public service days, who now owned a convenience store a few hours away. Braydon had recently put in all new charging stations, and David convinced him to keep one old station running, for old times sake. Today, he was going to drive out there, charge the car, get some scans of it for the ‘Gram (that’s a dated 2D website only old people use these days), and then drive it back home.
As he hit the road, it was a nice, cool day. Only 90 out, which is a real break from the heat of the fall in Colorado that had just recently ran out of steam. It had been a real whopper of a heat wave.
A while later, David pulled up to the convenience store, and there were a couple of people with 3D cameras standing around next to Braydon. David pulled up in front of the station, got out, and grabbed the handle of the last CHAdeMO connector in the world.
“What’s going on, Bray?” David asked, gesturing toward the people with the cameras.
“They wanted to see the last time an old air-cooled car charged, but sadly, that’s not going to happen. They said their editor would be OK with a staged photo.” Braydon said.
“Seriously? You said you’d keep this one going for me.”
“Sorry, Dave. I’m afraid I can’t do that. I couldn’t get the parts anymore. I can’t afford a custom-printed reproduction, either.”
So, they grabbed a few photos and 3D videos, and then unplugged the car. David opened the back hatch, pulled out his CCS4 adapter, and set the car to charge on one of the new stations.
“Keep the old cabinet up at least.” David pleaded. Braydon nodded in agreement.
“Can’t make any promises that my son’ll honor that. He’s taking the business over next year.”
An older woman was sitting down to eat when her wife came into the room, handing her a set of neural aids. “There’s a really good braincast out today about the last old air-cooled car to charge up.” she said. “I remember that piece of junk! That thing almost stranded us, remember?”
So, the old lady put the neural aids up to the side of her head, allowing it to magnetically latch onto the implants. She thought for a few seconds about wanting to see the braincast, and the images and thoughts started pouring into her mind. She had owned an air-cooled EV decades earlier, but things didn’t work out with it. Being air-cooled, it couldn’t stand the heat in Arizona.
It all started out when the old federal government decided to not spend money putting in stations for the old LEAFs and the other cars that took that kind of plug. Ahh, yes, the CHAdeMO plug. She saw it on the braincast, and remembered fondly at struggling to plug the thing into the car. Damn that was a long time ago!
Oh, and when they stopped making those. Yes, that’s right, they didn’t keep them up because there weren’t new stations for them and the new standard had taken everything over. What year was that? Oh yeah, she remembered now. Or was it on the braincast? Oh, well, doesn’t matter. She knew the year now.
Anyways, the cars didn’t go “POOF” and disappear from the road. Like any old car, they got in accidents, some broke down and it wasn’t worth the money to repair them. But, eventually only a few were left and people who had them in earlier years either kept them to spite all the new-fangled 2,000-mile nonsense, or bought them to restore or do an upgrade on.
Back in the day, EV drivers had to struggle. We needed apps to figure out where to go to charge, and we even had to stop at an RV park! Oh, those were the days, weren’t they? High adventure.
By the time the stations started disappearing, only a few collectors and weird people obsessed with their old car noticed. But, history recently happened and the last plug went offline for good. Her wife had left a comment in the braincast thinking “good riddance!” and they both laughed about that. She had always hated that car.
CHAdeMO was dead, but it wasn’t a traumatic thing. By the time most of the stations closed, nobody relied on them anymore. Adapters and “plug swaps” had been around for years by then. You could even get a shop to gut the car and upgrade it to the latest hub motors and batteries, if you wanted. Most collectors and old people who refused to get a new car did that. A few kept theirs all original, hoping they’d go up in value.
Up next was a really interesting World War III documentary braincast, but that’s another 故事. But hey, new languages are easy to pick up in the latest version of Duolingo for Neuralink, so there’s that.
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Source: Clean Technica