Alternative Fuel Vehicles Found in San Jose

Thursday June 24th, 2010 at 1:66 PM
Posted by: Derek

toyota-prius-plug-in-hybrid-conceptHybrid cars are expensive and only considered a short term answer towards relieving our dependence upon foreign oil sources. To really decrease America’s dependency and reduce our overall consumption of a non-renewable resource, there are many alternative fuel cars in the pipeline – compressed natural gas, hydrogen, 100% electric vehicles, PHEV, and bio-diesel are the alternative fuels being explored by many car manufacturers and independent companies looking to offer conversions.

Alternative fuels, such as compressed natural gas (CNG) and hydrogen fuel cells, are also being tested by many companies. Ford is testing a CNG powered F-150 with a range of 190 miles on 10 gallons of CNG. Taxi cabs are also a target using CNG as a fuel source. On average, a NY taxi cab can run up 50,000 miles a year. Using CNG, this translates into a savings of approximately $38,000.

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Closed NUMMI Plant in Fremont Gets A New Lease on Life With Tesla – Toyota Deal

Friday May 21st, 2010 at 9:55 AM
Posted by: Derek

tesla_model_s_sedan_medTesla and Toyota to build electric cars at NUMMI plant

The closure of the NUMMI plant in Fremont, California six weeks ago was just another downfall to California’s struggling economy and double digit unemployment rate. Late Thursday, Tesla Motors announced that it is teaming up with Toyota to build its all-electric Model S sedan at the recently shuttered NUMMI plant in Fremont, creating more than 1,000 new jobs.

Under the agreement, Toyota, the world’s largest automaker, will invest $50 million in Tesla, which will buy the NUMMI plant for an undisclosed sum. The joint venture was unveiled by Akio Toyoda, Toyota’s CEO, who flew in from Japan for the announcement, Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger at a heavily attended 5 p.m. news conference at Tesla’s Palo Alto headquarters.

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Fisker Karma S – Is it a crime to produce a $90k eco-vehicle?

Monday January 11th, 2010 at 8:11 AM
Posted by: asgruben

Henrik FiskerBy Adrienne Gruben

The 2010 North American International Auto Show began in Detroit today, and the fanfare is high, but how journalists, consumers, and the market itself will receive the cars once they emerge from those huge cloth covers is still a big mystery, one that I bet automakers wish could be solved in 45 minutes, like on “CSI: Miami.” Instead, car makers have to wring their hands through a bunch of grouchy fiscal quarters. Since the NAIAS is already being covered like a Ferrari at a pig swap, I thought that looking at how one of last year’s offerings weathered its post-unveiling hoopla might make us better prognosticators on the subject, but to make it fun in these bleak times, I chose the designer that most said, “international intrigue,” that was most likely to end up in a high-speed chase, that most reminded me of “CSI: Miami.” I chose Henrik Fisker.

Former BMW designer and now CEO and lead designer of his own firm, Fisker Automotive, Henrik Fisker is  just the kind of character on which they would base a murder victim on “CSI: Miami.” In the plot, a greedy rival steals blueprints, and the fictional Fisker is found face-down in wet clay, smothered in a model based on his own imagination. The script writers would have found inspiration while procrastinating on websites for high-end cars and running across this quote from Fisker, “”I enjoy being hands-on. Designing, of course, but also working with the modeler, smelling the clay, getting clay under my fingernails.” After reading Fisker’s real-life quote aloud in the opening scene, Lt. Horatio Caine (David Caruso) might then say, “He smelled the clay alright.” Cue: “Won’t get fooled again.”

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First Impressions: Nissan Leaf EV Concept

Friday December 4th, 2009 at 9:1212 AM
Posted by: Derek

Nissan Leaf EV test mule
By Derek Mau

We received an invitation to take quick spin in Nissan’s new zero-emission electric vehicle (EV), the Nissan Leaf. Want to know what it Nissan is doing towards moving us away from fossil-fuel burning cars? Read on and I’ll fill you in on some of the details.

Nissan is ready to introduce one of the first 100% electric vehicles produced by a major carmaker in late 2010. The Nissan Leaf is a sub-compact, 5 passenger car that is driven solely by an electric motor powered by a Lithium-ion battery stack. The electric motor cranks out 80kW and 280 Nm of torque. The stack of Li-ion batteries, comprised of 48 modules, has a capacity of 24kW and produces over 90kW of power. For comparison purposes, the gas and electric motors of the 2010 Prius have a combined power output of 100kW (134 hp).

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Some Electric Winners at Frankfurt

Thursday September 17th, 2009 at 8:99 AM
Posted by: m35man

Citreon EV

France’s Renault SA stole the spotlight at the Frankfurt Motor Show, unveiling four electric cars and pledging to bring them to market at reasonable prices within three years.

These spicy winners steamed the competition when Renault stepped up and led the buzz parade. The name of the game in Frankfurt was electric. Gas is passé and the press is impressed by top-tier designs that embrace the passion of electric car technology.

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Honda To Have EV By 2015

Tuesday August 25th, 2009 at 9:88 AM
Posted by: tonyb

Honda EV Concept

OK, looks like the big time electric cars wars are on for real. Not just Tesla, and not just the Volt or Prius (which are hybrids anyway), but recent news of the Nissan Leaf threw fuel on the fire, and now come word that Honda will be making their own EV that will hit the streets by 2015.

Word out of Japan is that Honda plans to roll out an all-electric automobile in America by 2015. Honda, a company that essentially defined fuel efficiency combined with practicality by the early 80s will move to battery power in order to meet upcoming zero-emission regulations.

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Nissan Leaf Reveal Video

Tuesday August 4th, 2009 at 7:88 AM
Posted by: Derek

Zero Emission logoNissan Motor Co., Ltd. unveiled Nissan LEAF, the world’s first affordable, zero-emission car.  Designed specifically for a lithium-ion battery-powered chassis, Nissan LEAF is a medium-size hatchback that comfortably seats five adults and has a range of more than 100 miles (160km) to satisfy real-world consumer requirements. Slated for launch in late 2010 in Japan, the United States, and Europe, Nissan LEAF ushers in a new era of mobility – the zero-emission era.

“Nissan LEAF is a tremendous accomplishment – one in which all Nissan employees can take great pride,” said Nissan President and CEO Carlos Ghosn.  “We have been working tirelessly to make this day a reality –  the unveiling of a real-world car that has zero – not simply reduced – emissions.  It’s the first step in what is sure to be an exciting journey – for people all over the world, for Nissan and for the industry.”

Video of the Nissan Leaf reveal event after the jump.

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Posted in hybrid, Nissan, Press and News, Video Reviews |Tags:, , || 2 Comments »

Mulally Says Ford's Profitability Based On Hybrids & EVs

Tuesday July 21st, 2009 at 7:77 AM
Posted by: tonyb

Alan Mulally

Alan Mulally, CEO of Ford, recently commented on the future of his car company and made a statement that most motorheads would have thought inconceivable a matter of months ago. Mulally said that a key portion of Ford’s future plans center on “more and more electrification, both hybrids and battery electric vehicles.” In addition to that, he also made some predictions as to when the Blue Oval would be in the black.

The Ford CEO said that the automaker is on path to be profitable by 2011. If he was talking about the first quarter, that’s a scant 18 months away. And for a company that posted record losses of $14.7 billion in 2008, and forecast continued losses through the rest of 2009 and through 2010, that’s a pretty amazing thing to say. And something to keep in mind is that Ford is the only American manufacturer to turn down bailout money from the feds. Of course, they were also in much better shape, product-wise than either GM or Chrysler.

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Nissan Might Make Batteries & EVs In U.S.

Monday July 20th, 2009 at 7:77 AM
Posted by: tonyb

Nissan Altima Hybrid

Now that it seems every car maker from Mercedes on down is going to be getting into the hybrid or electric vehicle business, word is starting to filter out about not just the “whys” but more importantly, the “wheres” concerning production of the new generation of cars. The good news for autoworkers that might be looking for jobs, is that Nissan is rumored to be considering a battery or EV facility here in America.

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Saturn + Penske = Electric

Monday July 6th, 2009 at 7:77 AM
Posted by: tonyb

electric smart car

First came the news that GM was going to sell Saturn. Then came the news that Roger Penske, of all people, was going to buy Saturn. And now the speculation swirls around just what Penske will do with his newly acquired car company. So far, it can be summed up in one word: electric.

The agreement between GM & Penske says that The General will keep building the Aura, Vue, and Outlook models for The Captain on a contract basis, but that GM would be using the powertrain from the Vue Hybrid on its GM-only Equinox smaller SUV. This arrangement leaves Saturn without any hybrids, and the rest of their models, although given decent mileage, might not be able to cut the mustard as CAFE standards rise.

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