The officials said the time may have arrived for electric vehicles to really take off not only in Japan but also around the world as concerns grow about emissions and dependence on oil. But the main hurdles that need to be overcome are better battery technology, costs and having recharging stations in convenient locations.
"Automakers are competing in many aspects, but the entire industry needs to come together and offer convenience for our customers," said Nissan Chief Operating Officer Toshiyuki Shiga.
But electric vehicles still remain largely experimental. The main users now are government-related groups with only a niche market among regular consumers. The Japanese government has made reducing greenhouse gases a pillar of its policy, and encouraging electric vehicle use is seen as a key way that can be achieved. "Please make this an all Japan effort," Teruhiko Mashiko, the economy minister, told the crowd.
Although some participants expressed hopes the standard would spread internationally, Toyota executive Koei Saga said that was "close to impossible" because of different needs and uses overseas.
"CHArge de MOve", equivalent to "charge for moving", and is a pun for "O cha demo ikaga desuka" in Japanese, meaning "Let's have a tea while charging" in English. This logo means smiles which associate a bright future and happiness with a combination of the circuit symbol of battery representing "Charge", and a dynamic curving line representing "Move". This ecological green is the color of "Green Tea". (Google News)