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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Electric cars, like the Bailey Electric, were designed for women. In 1908, the Bailey Electric "Phaeton Victoria" cost between $2,000 - $2,600 (depending on the battery option) and could get 50 miles on its 60 amp battery. The car weighed about 2,000 pounds. Women liked them because, unlike the gasoline version, they were silent, didn't smell, and were easy to drive. They looked good, too.

Here's a link about them, and well worth the read.
http://www.earlyamericanautomobiles.com/baileyhistory.htm


You will find the battery specs interesting (just keep scrolling down in the article for details and pictures). There is a fully-functional one of these cars, nick-named The Good Fairy, in a Boston old-car museum. The car's motto was "always ready and faithful." They cost one cent per mile to drive.

From the article:
The battery is of Exide type, good for 40 to 50 miles of service though the car is designed to take the Edison battery and the makers claim that under ordinary conditions, that is, good roads, it will run 100 miles on one charge if using the Edison battery.

As you read the article, some of the comments will remind you of the Volt!
 

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A Ford Model T was about $850 at that time. That puts the Bailey into Tesla price range! Unfortunately Bailey couldn't match the price drops Ford was able to manage ($260 15 years later) or we might now all be driving electrics.
 

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Yes, good for 50 miles on a charge at 20 mph and good weather, no head wind and on a smooth, flat road.
 

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Part of the reason women preferred the electric car was that they were easier to start, gas engines didn't have electric starters yet. The invention of the electric starter was In part what help defeat the electric car
 

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Women liked them because, unlike the gasoline version, they were silent, didn't smell, and were easy to drive. They looked good, too.
All these are still selling points today.
 

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It's ironic that it took a battery and an electric motor to enable the ice revolution to succeed. Ironic indeed!
 

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The sunvisor mirror was created for women too. I dont celebrate when they put it on the pilot side...It belongs on the right.
 

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If the electric motor and battery allowed women to start their gas engine, use that as an analogy for the Volt where GM made both the "starter" and battery bigger and powerful enough to move the vehicle, and the gas engine is still there when the battery runs down. And add that the gas engine will be removed completely when the battery range passes 200 miles.
 

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Best feature of an electric car - women approach ME to talk about it. If only I had one about 20 years ago.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Nice! There were many, many electric cars back then. I like the picture in your link of all the ladies getting into the car in the advertisement piece. Unlike Jay Leno's Baker, the Bailey was a convertible for either closed or open driving. Probably not very aerodynamic, though. But then, she was only driving 21 m.p.h. when she floored it!
 

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My Dad, who is long gone but not forgotten, told me years ago when I was a young man during the first gas crisis in the early 70's that electric cars had the most promise. That if the electric car continued to evolve for decades, like gasoline cars, we would all be driving electric cars, just as we do now with gas cars. Back then it was about the money from oil, today over 100 years later it still is about the money.....
 

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Electric cars, like the Bailey Electric, were designed for women. In 1908, the Bailey Electric "Phaeton Victoria" cost between $2,000 - $2,600 (depending on the battery option) and could get 50 miles on its 60 amp battery.
Uh huh, but automobile history has an even earlier story: Bertha Benz


First cross-country automobile journey

On 5 August 1888, without telling her husband and without permission of the authorities, Benz drove with her sons Richard and Eugen, thirteen and fifteen years old, in one of the newly constructed Patent Motorwagen automobiles—from Mannheim to Pforzheim—becoming the first person to drive an automobile over a real distance. Motorized drives before this historic trip were merely very short trial drives, returning to the point of origin, made with mechanical assistants. This pioneering tour had a one-way distance of about 106 km (66 mi).

Although the ostensible purpose of the trip was to visit her mother, Bertha Benz had other motives: to prove to her husband—who had failed to consider marketing his invention adequately—that the automobile they both heavily invested in would become a financial success once it was shown to be useful to the general public; and to give her husband the confidence that his constructions had a future
 
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