http://player.ooyala.com/player.swf?embedCode=U2OG9kMjoPuxSXWmn8G3D11Z9vGSHPFG&version=2 Unlike other automakers, Tesla is headquartered in the hills of Palo Alto next to beautiful rolling hills with lush green scenery and horse crossing signs. As you can imagine, a place like this would have some of the best driving roads in the country. We were slightly disappointed that the man behind it… → Read More
Created for “a series of special demonstration appearances,” this Leaf Nismo RC is a racing-based rethinking of the Leaf design and powertrain. They’ve shaved off about 40% of the weight, bringing it down to just over 2000 lbs, lowered it to have only 2.4″ of clearance, and of course switched it over to rear wheel drive.
The performance is… well, we can’t expect too much, since it’s more or… → Read More
http://player.ooyala.com/player.swf?embedCode=V2Zm1kMjpmx6e4KJQE_-FPG_ZRWwqraE&version=2 The Chevy Volt and the Nissan Leaf are enjoying lots of free publicity right now. Each of their unique approaches to cleaner mobility has drawn a lot of hype. What about the car that started it all? What’s the next step for the Toyota Prius? → Read More
Although I’m excited about the Leaf and EVs in general, the launch hasn’t exactly been smooth. There have been shortages, range issues, and now some sort of bug with the AC unit that’s causing some cars to not start at all. It’s unclear how widespread the problem is, or what Nissan intends to do, but the consensus seems to be “if your Leaf gives you a weird error on… → Read More
Audi has just announced details of another EV to be produced under their e-tron moniker in the form of the A3. The A3 e-tron is a battery electric vehicle, similar to the Nissan Leaf and Tesla Roadster. The Audi has a front mounted electric motor powered by two lithium-ion batteries, one in the middle and one in the rear, with 26.5 kWh of total energy. Total output of the A3 e-tron is just over… → Read More
Road and Track is a great car magazine, but they forgot an important fact about April Fools’ Day: the date. Yesterday, March 30th, they outed some pictures of the Volt sans roof. Their post even discussed some new tech for the unsightly little thing, despite its lack of a regular size gas tank. “We’re extremely excited about the new GM-patented photovoltaic film that covers two-thirds of… → Read More
Back in August of ’10 (them were the days) we posted about how an Israeli company called Better Place was testing out a system for switching out batteries in Japanese electric taxis. They drive in, get their new battery, and drive out. A good idea for fleet vehicles, we said at the time, but it would take some refinement before coming to regular cars.
Well, Better Place is taking that step now… → Read More
Considering that only 1,500 Tesla Roadsters are out on the roads, it’s amazing they’ve been able to clock up 10 million miles since 2008. Even more impressive is that the Roadsters have collectively saved 500,000 gallons of fuel and over 5.3 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions, while maintaining supercar performance. → Read More
When Elon Musk first came to Silicon Valley he was researching advanced, highly-energy-dense super-capacitors at Stanford. Coincidentally, when speaking at the Cleantech Forum in San Francisco about the future of electric vehicles Musk said, “If I were to make a prediction, I’d think there’s a good chance that it is not batteries, but super-capacitors.” → Read More
Porsche has decided to begin taking orders for their highly-received 918 Spyder Plug-in Hybrid. Dealers have been given the go-ahead to begin taking orders for the limited (918 units) $845,000 car. The 918 Spyder is powered by a 500-plus horsepower V8 gas engine which gets assistance from two electric motors producing an addition 218 horsepower. 0-60 times are estimated to be near 3 seconds. → Read More
According to a Friday SEC filing, VIA Motors closed a $5.3 million series A investment in a deal that involved 44 angel, and friends-and-family investors. The filing reflects the potential for the company to take an additional $5 million. Carl E. Berg, a serial real estate entrepreneur and investor in electric vehicle technology, participated in the new round, and remains VIA Motors’ principal… → Read More
The Model S, is the most hyped electric car due to come out soon. Everyone is waiting to see what the Model S will feature and whether or not it’ll be worth the wait. Today, at the Cleantech Forum in San Francisco, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said that the Model S will support third-party apps and text-to-speech, pretty much confirming many rumors. → Read More
If a car company ever wanted to make an efficient plug-in hybrid, they would combine a diesel engine with an electric powertrain. No one has done this yet — possibly for noise and vibration issues — but Volvo thinks it won’t be a problem when they release a plug-in diesel hybrid of their V60 wagon. → Read More
Looks like we were right about production beginning in March. The long awaited Fisker Karma was put to the test this week by a few automotive publications and they had a few good things to say about it. → Read More
Rental car stalwarts, The Hertz Corporation (Hertz, NYSE:HTZ) revealed plans to install 2.3 megawatts (MW) of solar photovoltaic systems at sixteen locations across the U.S. this year.
As the first piece of their solar initiative, Hertz completed construction of a 235 kilowatt system — that’s about the size of 60 typical U.S. home solar installations — on the rooftop of their Denver… → Read More
Hertz has been making some green moves lately by renting out electric vehicles. Now, they are taking green operations to the next level by installing solar panels at select locations. The first phase includes retrofitting 16 existing facilities with 2.3 MW+ solar systems and getting them operational by Q3 2011. → Read More
The Nissan Leaf is a pretty neat car. It has no gas tank or combustion engine. Instead, it’s powered by lithium-ion batteries and an 80kW electric motor. It lasts up to 100 miles on one charge. Unfortunately, the the Leaf isn’t sporty or fun to drive. The only thrill you get is from driving one of the first EVs on the road. Nissan, however, is capable of making some pretty good sports cars… → Read More
The electric Kangoo is Renault’s version of Ford Transit Connect Electric. Its a small van on car frame and is very popular in the commercial fleets. Think of it as a vehicle for people who drive less than 100 miles per day and park their vehicles in the same spot every night. It doesn’t offer the most flexibility for everyone, but for some it’s quite promising, except for those certain rental… → Read More
Today, the Santa Monica, Calif.-based maker of electric vehicles and batteries, CODA Holdings, appointed auto industry veteran Phil Murtaugh as chief executive officer.
On a conference call, CODA’s interim CEO Steven “Mac” Heller described Murtaugh as someone who believes “the automotive industry can innovate rapidly and be more responsible as a global citizen,” and is deeply experienced in… → Read More
We heard a little while back that Honda was beginning to go public with its new hybrid and EV line for 2012, and sure enough, today at the LA Auto Show they unveiled the concept electric Fit. It doesn’t sound particularly original, and the Leaf and Volt will be beating it to market by a year, but hey, the more the merrier.
Here are some basic stats and facts. → Read More
Well, there it is. The 2013 Infiniti EV. Looks great, eh? The press release says it will “be a stylish, high performance five-seat luxury vehicle with zero emissions technology.” So in other words, it will be a Nissan Leaf done-up in stylish sheet metal, which will no doubt carry quite a premium. [Infiniti via cnet] → Read More
One of the big conflicts in battery tech right now is how to keep the things at the right temperature. Nissan and Mitsubishi are going with air cooling, while Tesla, Chevy, and as of today Ford are all opting for liquid temperature regulation. Since few electrics are really on the road, it seems there isn’t sufficient data to go with one over the other. → Read More
Saab, not exactly the first company I think of when I think of cutting edge electric vehicles, is determined not to be left behind by the electric renaissance that’s starting… any time now, just wait for it. They’re rolling out a test fleet of EVs based on the upcoming 9-3 model, but wouldn’t give a date for actual production. Chances are it’ll be quite a while. → Read More