Federal regulators have postponed rules to require hybrid and EV carmakers to add audible warnings to their cars to alert nearby pedestrians, bicyclists and visually impaired people, Reuters reported.
The audible warnings would be installed on cars made by Ford, Honda and Toyota and be activated when those cars are traveling slower than 18 mph. According to the report, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says hybrid and EV cars are 19-percent more likely to be involved in a pedestrian crash when compared to gasoline cars. The rule could prevent 2,800 crashes with pedestrians. (Read More…)
While we were hanging outside the Staples Center begging passersby for photos, information and leftover shrimp from the Los Angeles Auto Show to share with you all (well, maybe not the shrimp), there was still news happening that we didn’t get the chance to cover.
So, here it is in condensed form.
I guess I cover the reverse trike beat here at TTAC.
It started with a post about a Chinese
death trap three-wheeler I’d seen advertised. In the comments to that post, one of our readers suggested looking into the Elio project. We’ve done that a few times since then, including an exclusive review of one of their prototypes. Because of our coverage of Elio Motors, a group of Elio deposit holders who have become disenchanted by continued production delays asked us to consider their charges. While it’s true that I’m in what may be a minority of automotive writers that don’t think Elio is a scam, I’m not naive. There are ample reasons for skepticism and we take the word truth in our title seriously, so Mark Stevenson and I looked into the critics’ complaints and we both decided they were adding nothing new to issues raised by Elio’s critics before.
However, I do keep tabs on their Facebook group, which is how I found out about Arcimoto, a Eugene, Oregon company that hopes to put their highway capable electric reverse trike in production by the end of next year with a starting price of $11,900. (Read More…)
John Martin, Nissan North America’s senior vice president of manufacturing and supply chain management, had some harsh words for Tesla on Friday. According to him, Uber — not Tesla — is the real disruptor, and what Tesla is doing now is relatively easy, Automotive News reported.
“Lot’s of people are calling Tesla a disrupter. They are not,” he said while arguing that building a performance vehicle that’s priced over $100,000 is much easier than manufacturing an electric car for under $30,000.
And what about Apple and Google? Martin doesn’t foresee either of them getting into the auto manufacturing business anytime soon.
Mitsubishi will show off a crossover-sized electric vehicle at the Tokyo Motor Show this month that will preview what the automaker has planned for electric vehicles and, likely, elements of the next generation of its Outlander Sport.
The eX electric crossover is roughly the same size as the Outlander Sport currently on sale — the concept crossover is 167 inches long, compared to the Outlander Sport’s 169 inches.
According to the automaker, the EV has two electric motors with a combined output of 184 horsepower and a range of roughly 250 miles. (Read More…)
The world is abuzz this week with news of the all-new Tesla Model X, which is a minivan that looks like it may at any moment take flight and get tangled up in some power lines.
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, that’s right: Tesla has brought the first gullwing minivan to market, and people are excited. And not just slightly excited. Elon Musk is giving press conferences to delighted admirers. Tesla fans are running up and down the streets in Palo Alto screaming “THE TESLA IS COMING! THE TESLA IS COMING!” And Pacific Gas & Electric engineers are currently on the job trying to figure out how to get the first Model X down from some high-voltage wires near Tarzana.
Essentially, it is Tesla pandemonium.
The British government is continuing on with a study of inductive charging on England’s busy A roads a reality, reports the BBC (via Gizmodo).
Feasibility of the technology hasn’t been fully proven as of yet, but England is getting one step closer by tendering bids for off-road trials. If off-road trials are successful, you might be able to drive long distances across the UK without needing to stop to recharge. The trials are expected to take 18 months from 2016 to 2017.
Elon, you might soon lose your killer app.
Following Ford’s announcement that production of the Focus and C-Max would leave Wayne, Michigan in the next few years, sales personnel at Ford dealers across America were heard asking their managers, “We still sell the C-Max?”
No, that’s not entirely true. Ford is moving Focus and C-Max production out of Wayne by 2018, but we weren’t privy to the conversations inside Ford showrooms. That question may or may not have been asked.
Through the first-half of this year, Ford’s U.S. dealers only sold an average of four C-Max Hybrids and C-Max Energis per dealer per month. (Read More…)
According to Toyota, three Japanese automakers — Honda, Toyota and Nissan — are working together to build hydrogen fuel stations around for future fuel-cell cars.
The program, which will subsidize fueling stations up to 11 million yen ($89,500) per year for each station, is meant to boost the nation’s infrastructure for hydrogen-powered cars.
Sales figures from automakers this week show slumping sales of electric vehicles and hybrids nationwide as gas prices drop and tax incentives dry up.
According to the Detroit News, sales from EV makers such as Nissan and Chevrolet have slowed down significantly — more than 30 percent for the Volt and 12 percent for the Leaf — last month, and both models may end up down significantly for the sales year.