Tag: EV

By on February 1, 2016

2015 Nissan Leaf

Electric vehicles aren’t rollin’ coal anymore — or, at least, not nearly as much as they used to.

Reuters reports coal-fired electricity generation is now at a 35-year low in the U.S., and November 2015 was the fifth month in a row more natural gas than coal was used to produce electricity.

That’s not all. From Reuters:

With just one month of data missing in 2015, some analysts think power companies may have burned more gas than coal for the full year for the first time in history.

Oh, and guess what’s dirtier than natural gas when burned? You bet: gasoline.

(Read More…)

By on January 11, 2016

cq5dam.web.1280.1280 (1)

After last week’s unveiling at CES, we were left with plenty of questions about the new 2017 Chevrolet Bolt. Answers came today, at least about its drivetrain.

Notably, GM mentions a low-speed driving mode that allows for single-pedal operation. This “Low” mode allows the driver to control regenerative braking with a paddle behind the steering wheel. This could be a game changer in stop-and-go traffic.

The standard drive mode allows for 0-60 mph times of seven seconds flat.

(Read More…)

By on January 6, 2016

2016 BMW i8 Hybrid Exterior Front

“Looks like sex, goes like stink” is the usual supercar mantra, but BMW’s guru was humming a different tune when penning the i8.

You see, the i8 isn’t just a sexy car with “butterfly doors.” It’s also a production prototype of sorts styled after BMW’s 2009 Vision EfficientDynamics concept.

Most supercars have exotic engines with high cylinder counts and drink premium gasoline at an alarming rate. BMW’s mission with the i8 was to make an efficient supercar and at the same time production-test technologies that will trickle down to its higher volume cars over time.

The i8’s efficiency is the key to understanding this sexy German. The i8 isn’t the best handling supercar, or even the best handling BMW. Neither is it the fastest BMW, the most luxurious BMW, or (oddly enough) the most efficient BMW. Instead, the i8 delivers M235i like lateral grip, M4 like acceleration, fuel economy that bests the 320i by a few miles per gallon and lines so sexy I got a thumbs up from a passing F430.

This isn’t your average sports car.

(Read More…)

By on December 14, 2015

Nissan IDS Concept

Here’s some of the news you may have missed if you were out fighting the holiday crowds and spreading some of that Yuletide cheer by burning the hell out of some cookies you were planning on giving the neighbors. (Read More…)

By on December 12, 2015

Volkswagen Microbus CES teaser

Multiple outlets are reporting that the vehicle seen in this teaser photo from Volkswagen is none other than an electrified version of the Microbus concept and it will debut at the Consumer Electronics Show next month. The photo follows an earlier report by Autocar (which has since been updated with the same photo and new text) that said Volkswagen would bring a new Microbus to the Las Vegas convention.

We won’t disagree. We also won’t hold our breath for a production model.

(Read More…)

By on December 10, 2015

Ford fusion Plug in

Look, this is pretty awkward. While nearly every auto journalist in the country has congregated in Dearborn, Michigan today for Ford’s annual Christmas party, we’re here at work pounding out stories about Camaro steering wheels and drinking cheap coffee. We weren’t invited to the party, it’s cool. We can both be adults about the sitch.

But according to various Twitter feeds — including the Wall Street Journal’s Detroit Bureau Chief John Stoll and WWJ’s Jeffrey Gilbert— Ford is talking battery packs and showing off a covered car that looks like a Fusion with a half-assed bed sheet covering it.

Oh, and there’s a plug running right into it, as if Kevin the Ford shop hand forgot to unplug the damn thing before letting a roomful of journalists snap pictures of it.

(Read More…)

By on December 2, 2015

Faraday Future

Faraday Future, the other, other bespoke electric luxury carmaking startup said they’ll show off their concept for the “future of mobility” next month at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

The automaker’s website sports a clock counting down to 7 p.m. (Pacific) Jan. 4, 2016, for the automaker’s unveiling. The company has made several high-profile hires, including head of engineering Nick Sampson who helped Tesla design chassis for their cars, according to The Verge.

In an interview with the website, Sampson said the company expects to roughly double from 400 employees now and challenge other automakers soon. The company announced last month that its looking to invest $1 billion in a factory in California, Georgia, Louisiana or Nevada.

(Read More…)

By on November 3, 2015

2016_nissan_leaf_18

Electric car sales in Georgia have halted after that state stopped offering incentives and started charging a $200 annual fee to recoup lost gas tax revenue, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.

New electric vehicle registrations plummeted 89 percent from June to August after the state stopped offering a $5,000 tax break on top of the $7,500 federal incentive. Georgia’s incentive was one of the most generous in the country.

Georgia’s electric purge could portend a future in highly incentivized states, such as California and Colorado, where electric incentives and sales are still relatively strong.

(Read More…)

By on October 28, 2015

Nissan IDS Concept

Nissan unveiled its next Leaf IDS Concept, a semi-autonomous EV complete with a glimpse of Nissan’s coming “Intelligent Drive” features that may be equipped on some of its cars by the end of the decade.

The IDS Concept boasts an autonomous piloted driving mode for conversationalists (the seats rotate inward to invite dialogue!) a movable dash with “Minority Report” pre-cog abilities (probably) and a submarine-style style steering wheel.

But those aren’t the best concept-ish features. (Read More…)

By on September 17, 2015

2015 BMW i8 front doors open lead

2015 BMW i8
1.5-liter DOHC I-3, VANOS, hybrid (Gas engine: 228 horsepower @ 5,800 rpm, 236 lb-ft @ 3,700 rpm; Electric motor: 129 horsepower @ 4,800)6-speed automatic (rear) and 2-speed (front), Lithium ion battery

28 city/29 highway/28 combined (EPA Rating, MPG)

27.4 mpg on the ‘I didn’t plug-in the plug-in’ cycle (Observed, MPG)

Tested Options: Giga World package

Base Price:
$137,495*
As Tested Price:
$139,495*

* Prices include $995 destination charge.

This is the car that people in the 1970s predicted we would be driving in the year 2000. Fifteen years after the turn of the millennium, the BMW i8 is the machine that looks like no other BMW — and certainly like no other car on the road. Its gasoline and plug-in electric powertrain compliment its looks, bringing together the efficiency of an electric car and the convenience of an internal combustion engine.

But there is a lot more to understand about what the BMW i8 is and is not. Is it an exotic supercar? Or is it a dream of the environmentally minded automotive enthusiast? Or is it something else altogether? Could this be the one vehicle which we cannot currently classify? Or is it all of these things?

Has the future finally arrived?

(Read More…)

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