About the Author

Seth Weintraub

@llsethj

Publisher and Editorial Director of the 9to5/Electrek sites.

  +SethWeintraub (850,000)

Seth Weintraub is an award-winning journalist and blogger who won back to back Neal Awards during his three plus years  covering Apple and Google at IDG’s Computerworld from 20072010.  Weintraub next covered all things Google for Fortune Magazine from 2010-2011 amassing a thick rolodex of Google contacts and love for Silicon Valley culture.

It turns out that his hobby 9to5Mac.com blog was always his favorite and in 2011 he went full time adding his Fortune Google followers to 9to5Google.com and adding the commerce component 9to5Toys.com gear and deals site. In 2013, Weintraub bought one of the Tesla’s first Model S EVs off the assembly line and so began his love affair with the Electric Vehicle and green energy which in 2014 turned into electrek.co.

From 1997-2007, Weintraub was a Global IT director and Web Developer for a number of companies with stints at multimedia and branding agencies in Paris, Los Angeles, New York, Sydney, Hong Kong, Madrid and London before becoming a publisher/blogger.

Seth received a bachelors degree in Industrial and Systems Engineering from the University of Southern California with a minor in Multimedia and Creative Technology in 1997. In 2004, he received a Masters from NYU’s Tisch School of the Art’s ITP program.

Hobbies: Weintraub is a licensed single engine private pilot, certified open water diver and spent over a year traveling to 60 cities in 23 countries. Whatever free time exists is now guaranteed to his lovely wife and two amazing sons.

More at About.me.

Tips: seth@9to5mac.com, or llsethj on Wickr/AIM/Skype

Seth Weintraub's Favorite Gear

April 18

In a press release today SunPower (SPWR) announced it had agreed to buy the American wing of the insolvent German solar panel manufacturer SolarWorld for an undisclosed sum. The move would add around 500MW to SunPower’s production capacity putting it near First Solar as the biggest US maker of Solar Panels. expand full story

April 16

Bosch today announced that its PowerTube 500 batteries would be coming to US bikes. As the name implies, these are 500Wh batteries that will be integrated into the down tubes of bikes by manufacturers. As Bosch is the leading supplier of high-end ebike powertrains, the news will likely signal a shift to a more integrated look for “bike shop” quality ebikes.

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Home Solar Power

April 9

Announced by the company today, Uber has bought the ebike sharing company Jump for reportedly around $100M to $200M.  This could be a boon for ebike sharing and it has everything to do with Uber’s *uber* popular app and the integration of “ebiking” as a cheaper, more fun, and often quicker option than calling a car. Oh, and without fossil fuels…

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March 23

Amazon Link/ CodeAZBF7HCC at checkout $585.19+$10 <week ground shipping

I know a high-end ebike when I see one and this Ancheer 250W is absolutely not high-end. In fact, it would probably be a bit of a stretch to call this a mid-tier electric bike. Ancheer, a Chinese company that also sells USB peripherals, Fitness equipment and other knick knacks, took a bunch of base level components and put them on a Huffy-level all aluminum bike frame and out of this concoction got a good sub-$600 ebike. So how good/bad is it? Let me tell you…

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March 16

The Swiss know long-term cost of ownership well and one police force in Basel figures it will save a significant amount of money over the life of their police cruisers by swapping out diesel vehicles with all-electric Model X 100D SUVs, which Tesla claims is the “World’s fastest, safest and most versatile SUV”.

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March 13

The flying taxi company Kitty Hawk last night launched ‘Cora’, a Vertical Takeoff and Landing (VTOL) personal airplane/helicopter drone hybrid that will carry a passenger. Kitty Hawk is funded by Google co-founder Larry Page and CEO-ed by Sebastian Thrun, the self-driving car pioneer who is the founding director of Google’s X lab. expand full story

March 1

Pacific Gas and Electric customers in California can (now until May 31st) receive an additional $10,000 off the price of a BMW i3 via the instructions on the press release below. They join Southern California Edison customers and New Jersey’s PSE&G customers in getting the $10,000 rebate.

That’s in addition to the $7500 federal tax credit and the $2500 California State EV credit for eligible incomes as well as use of the HOV lanes and other incentives. PG&E throws in a $500 Clean Fuel rebate as well. That’s a total of $20,500 off the price of the BMW i3 which starts at around $44,500 making the final base cost of the i3 $24,000. Find BMW i3 inventory and lowest prices using this link.

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EVgo today announced price drops, a simpler scheme and longer charge windows to “the nation’s largest network of public electric vehicle (EV) DC Fast charging stations”. EVgo says that the new rates match or beat gasoline on a per mile basis and the new service will be a boon for apartment dwellers and current/prospective EV buyers who need to take trips outside of their EV range. However, there are some important details to consider.

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February 16

You know that argument that comes up when someone sees your electric car and says something like, “it is way worse to mine lithium needed for batteries than oil and what happens when the lithium runs out? I saw a Meme on the internet so I know it is true.”  Well… expand full story

January 12

Google this week announced that it was putting Google Assistant on Android Auto which basically means that your Android phone is now a Google Home/Amazon Echo type of device in your car that you can talk to. This, as opposed to having to push the button on the steering wheel, is great for passengers who want to ruin my music vibe.

Unfortunately, my Chevy Bolt was on an older version of the firmware which apparently isn’t OTA upgradable and cut out Android Auto on my Google Pixel every few minutes. To properly test and use Google Assistant, I was going to need to get a firmware update. Off to the Chevy dealer, right?

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January 10

Virginians will get 10% up to $3500 back on EV purchases if new law passes

Virginia lawmakers have put forward House Bill 469 which would allow for a 10% State tax refund on the purchase of an electric vehicle up to a $3500 maximum.

January 9

iDevices and Hubbell introduce Google Assistant/Amazon Alexa based Wi-Fi EV charger at CES 2018

iDevices is launching several new products at this year’s CES in Las Vegas, including a new smart EV charger with its recently announced parent company Hubbell.

With the relative success of its Chevy Bolt EV and the hunger for EVs in China, GM is one of the few big automakers actually trying to build a business around electric vehicles. CEO Mary Barra has committed separately to 5 crossovers, 2 minivans, 7 SUVs and 10 new electric vehicles by the end of the decade in China.  But with the Bolt EV reportedly losing up to $9000 per vehicle initially, how does the company get to real profitability with these vehicles?

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December 29, 2017

It has been almost a year since we reviewed the very capable Hyundai IONIQ Electric. As a refresher, this is the most efficient EV on the US market at 136 MPGe and the only model more efficient than the Tesla Model 3.

The problem, or recurring theme in a broader sense, is that it is almost impossible to get your hands on the all-electric version if you live outside of California even though the hybrid version is all over the country. This is because it is a compliance vehicle.

What could have been good news this week is that Hyundai finally announced the Plug-in Hybrid version price (along with EV only range moving from 27 to 29 miles). But not all Plug-ins are created equal…

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December 13, 2017

Continental AG, the large German automotive OEM company today previewed some new electric car charging technology that they plan to showcase at CES in Las Vegas next month. The announcements amount to two different parts of the EV charging infrastructure that would be OEM-ed into Electric vehicles by automakers:

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December 11, 2017

Mitsubishi’s Outlander PHEV is 3 years late and it comes with a paltry 12kWh battery yielding a range of 22 EV-only miles on a charge. That’s the bad news.

But today the only US plug-in SUV under $35,000 showed up for sale and as things stand it is the only affordable SUV you can drive via plug-in electricity in the US.  Luckily it can also tow a 1500lb load and can charge relatively quickly via CHAdeMO…

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December 8, 2017

This week on the Electrek Podcast, we are discussing the most popular news in the world of sustainable transport and energy, including Tesla’s victory over car dealers in Missouri, Model 3s being delivered to customers, today’s Nissan LEAF review, Boring Company progress and more. expand full story

December 5, 2017

Norway, Paris/France, England, India, Germany, China and Scotland have all announced plans to ban the sale of gasoline vehicles in the upcoming decades. The US state of California might be close behind if a new bill expected to be introduced in the coming month by Assemblymember Phil Ting takes hold.

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November 22, 2017

Green Deals: Free Tesla Ebook, 4-pack of Ecosmart 75W Equiv dimmable LED Light Bulbs: $11, more

Home Depot offers a 4 pack of dimmable Ecosmart Light Bulbs for $10.95 with free shipping . That’s over half off the regular price and one of the lowest prices we’ve seen for 75W equivalent bulbs that are also dimmable. These bulbs which are ideal for track and recessed lighting have a brightness of 940-Lumens have an actual Color Temperature- 2700K Soft White and are shatter resistant.

At 13W, these are about 6 times more efficient than incandescent for the same light and will save you an estimated $9/year/bulb in energy costs. That means these pay for themselves in a few months.

Other notable Green Deals today include:

November 17, 2017

I’m just waking up after last night’s Tesla Semi and next gen Roadster Event and it feels like a dream in a lot of ways.  If you would have told me yesterday that there would be an EV that met any of the following specs, I would have said “Vaporware!” Keep in mind these are base specs (!!) and the Founder’s Series car, which will take advantage of technologies gained in the 3 years before production, will somehow be better than:

  • Acceleration 0-60 mph: 1.9 sec
  • Acceleration 0-100 mph: 4.2 sec
  • Acceleration 1/4 mile: 8.8 sec
  • Top Speed: Over 250 mph
  • Wheel Torque: 10,000 Nm
  • Mile Range: 620 miles
  • Seating: 4+ trunk

It’s over. It’s. Just. Over.  I’ve said it before but there is no way to dispute it anymore. Electric vehicle engines are superior to internal combustion. Full stop.

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