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I spoke to Kieth this morning. 2 points

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Artguy   Tuesday, 05/06/08 11:32:41 AM
Re: None
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I spoke to Kieth this morning. 2 points about the Pathfinder video. Nissan is fine with the Pathfinder being driven into an uncrossable stream. They wanted a comparison and they got it. What that means in the grand scheme of things, I don't know. What subliminal messages it may or may not send, who knows, but Nissan got what it wanted, Torvec got what it wanted the Air Force got what it wanted and I imagine Ford got everything they wanted and more. Plus the Pathfinder wasn't destroyed, which is a good thing. Torvec is willing to 'test' drive any stockholder's Land Rover, etc. over the testing course, if they want to donate a vehicle, but they won't be liable for the write off when said vehicle self destructs in the swamp. So Nissan is fine.

The other important point which I didn't get and probably many people overlook, is the fact that when the FTV goes into the stream the 2nd time, it is a different, more dangerous, part of the course. The first crossing that sucked up the Pathfinder was 22" deep the 2nd was 44". That is a major deal. No wheeled vehicle is going to cross that stream at that point without some kind of unbelievable assist. I don't say it's impossible, simply because I have stock in Torvec and they do things that everyone agrees, can't be done. I would place a sizable bet on even a Humvee getting stuck at the 2nd crossing for the following reasons. Any normal SUV like the Pathfinder or Humvee claws it's way to the stream and then enters it nose first. The heaviest part of the truck goes right to the deep end. With the Pathfinder, Rover, Jeep, etc. that's lights out pretty quick because of the engine sucking water. Maybe the Humvee survives that part, especially with a snorkel, but now it has to pull the engine out of the water, unstick from the axle deep mud and overcome the approach angle on the other bank. The stream is too wide, too deep and too muddy for that to happen. Remember some key design elements of the FTV. 9 foot track and the engine up and behind the cab. When the wheeled vehicles are putting their heaviest components and half of their driving wheels into the trench, the FTV hasn't started to put the front edge of it's extra wide, 9 foot long footprint into the trench. Only after the cab pops up does the FTV's uniquely long suspension start to bridge the gap that wedges the front half of traditional designs. 44" of 5 foot wide 'streams' require some kind of bridge for any wheeled vehicle. That's why the Air Force is saying what they are saying and showing videos of a company no one heard of. There is simply no denying the video.

The slope segment shows another point that is huge for emergency vehicles. Traditional suspension designs have to go up to gain more ground clearance for rougher terrain. Think Monster trucks or Baja racers. The problem is gaining ground clearance moves the Center of Gravity higher and now the off roader is more flippable. You can widen the stance and add trick tires, but each inch of added clearance brings problems and you still get stuck in Mt. Read streams. Because each FTV track is so wide and so long, it can cling to the gravel slopes that would flip trucks. It can carry useful loads up and across the same slopes that roll jeeps. The Center of Gravity on the FTV vs any wheeled off roading truck is dramatically better and the engine mass is in a much better position. Even with the unusually long wheel base the FTV has approach and departure angles as good or better than anything out there. Think about the quality of design that combines ability to carry heavy loads across wide, deep, water, mud, snow, sand, gravel, with a Center of Gravity that holds it to radical slopes, and yet it can turn within it's track for maneuverability that nothing in it's class can match. All at a price point that isn't much more than the competition. Some think to design all this, create all this and to now have the kind of interest that not only believes, but wants to pay to be a part of going forward, should have happened faster than it has. That point is moot now. NO one else did it. NO one else has it, and important players are realizing that fact.

I used to follow all the conjecture on this board, but the back and forth that pops up is often more about emotional mental states than business, so I'm trying to stay out of all that. The shorts and the critics can interpret the stock price or Torvec leadership any way they want. Their glass will always be half empty, but their strongest arguments don't get a wheeled vehicle across that stream and they can't stop the FTV nose from doing that submarine blow of bursting out of the water. In my opinion, hedge funders and Torvec haters better have an exit strategy because with the funding that is in place, the hardware that is working and improving, and the paying players that are making plans to include Torvec inventions into their future, I think the Torvec development decade is ending and a profit decade is heating up. EOM

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