Yesterday the Obama administration announced “an unprecedented set of actions” to grow the U.S. plug-in electrified vehicle market.
The initiative represents a broad collaboration between federal agencies, state governments, major automakers, utilities, and others to aid the ongoing push to make electric cars viable alternatives to the internal combustion variety.
Perhaps chief in a laundry list of public and private sector agreements is up to $4.5 billion in loan guarantees for commercial scale charging — including fast charging — to create a nationwide network.
What would your body look like if it evolved to survive a car crash?
That’s the question a group of Australians had in mind when they created Graham, a disturbingly lifelike creation designed to show how vulnerable our bodies are in a low-speed impact. Read More >
Frustrated by congestion and unsafe lane changes, state governments are telling left lane drivers to get the lead out.
Tennessee rolled out a new law on July 1 that dings drivers $50 for driving too slowly in the left lane, joining a growing list of states that want to free up the go-fast lane through penalties. The days of drivers coasting along at (or slightly under) the speed limit in the passing lane are waning, and that’s a good thing. Read More >
Volkswagen diesel owners will be able to spend many happy, polluting miles on the road, even after they request a fix instead of a buyback.
Buried in the automaker’s $15.3 billion U.S. settlement is the expectation that most of the recalled vehicles will still spew twice the allowable rate of emissions after being repaired, according to Bloomberg. A fix for the 475,000 2.0-liter diesels hasn’t been approved, but regulators fully expect any repair plan to fail — and they’re grudgingly okay with it. Read More >
The state of New York wants its pound of flesh from Volkswagen, as well as $450 million.
A lawsuit filed against the automaker by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman alleges widespread knowledge of the emissions-cheating “defeat device” used in millions of diesel vehicles, according to the Wall Street Journal. Read More >
The federal agencies reviewing the country’s corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) targets are pleasantly surprised by the amount of fuel-saving technology in modern vehicles, and hint that the target they decided on back in 2011 is still doable.
Those agencies just released a technical assessment report (TAR) to guide the review process. In it, they figured that vehicles will average between 50 and 52.6 miles per gallon by the target year of 2025 — if gas stays stable and consumers continue buying SUVs and trucks.
That’s not too far off the original target, and judging by the optimistic tone of the report, it’s likely the 54.5 mpg mandate will stay intact. Read More >
Fiat Chrysler Automobiles is in hot water with federal authorities over the way it reports its sales.
Late yesterday, it was revealed that the U.S. Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission both launched investigations into the automaker, following months of accusations of inflated sales figures. Read More >
Business is about to get much more expensive for automakers with thirsty fleets.
The penalties leveled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration against automakers who miss their annual corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) standards are about to go up in August. Way up. Read More >
California’s Air Resources Board wants nothing to do with Volkswagen’s proposed fix for its 3.0-liter VW, Audi and Porsche TDI models equipped with emissions-cheating defeat devices.
The regulator rejected the automaker’s plan yesterday, and later issued a release calling it “incomplete and deficient in a number of areas.” For Volkswagen, CARB’s rejection is a major setback to its goal of settling the rest of its diesel emissions scandal fallout without another expensive buyback program. Read More >