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Mini Scooter E Debuts at Paris Motor Show

Electric motorbike offers CO2 free mobility – depending on how the recharging juice is generated, that is.

by on Sep.23, 2010

Can BMW transfers Mini’s driving fun and premium pricing to the two-wheel segment?

Mini will introduce a Scooter E Concept at the Paris International Motor Show next month. It could be the premium small car brand’s first two-wheel vehicle.

The electric drive unit, concealed beneath a painted cover inside the rear wheel, is powered by electricity supplied from a lithium-ion battery pack. Apart from the compact battery, a charging system and connecting cable are integrated in the rear of the Scooter E Concept. The charging cable has a plug which fits into a conventional domestic socket. This has a potential advantage of eliminating higher voltage special charging stations but will drastically increase the time to recharge the scooter.

Plugs and cables are accommodated underneath a cover similar to the round tank flap in a Mini car. After opening the illuminated flap, the plug and charging cable can be pulled out to a length of five meters. After the battery has been charged up, a button-operated spring mechanism ensures that the cable is retracted and coiled in a space-saving compartment. However, no range or performance or pricing data were released.


The cockpit of the Mini Scooter E Concept has a “Centre Speedo” in the circular shape of the four wheel Minis, with a smartphone integrated in the middle. The wraparound speedometer is in the form of a tube filled with fluid, the content expanding in line with the speed like a thermometer. In the lower area of the Centre Speedo, a battery charge level display indicates the range currently available. The design of all the control elements for lights, directional indicators and other driving functions corresponds to the buttons on the multifunction steering wheel of Mini cars.


First Look: Volvo C30 Polestar Concept

Volvo Cars' racing partner reveals performance streetcar.

by on Apr.21, 2010

Who says Volvo is only interested in safe, boring cars? The Polestar Concept could take some fans by surprise.

Chinese-owned Volvo Cars is continuing its attempt to leave behind its staid safety image this weekend as the new Volvo C30 Polestar Performance Concept Prototype is revealed.

Volvo Cars and Polestar are now enter their  fifteenth consecutive motorsport season in the Swedish Touring Car Championship (STCC) as reigning champions.

Polestar has a long and successful competition history with Volvo, racing with 850, S40, and S60. In 2009, Polestar won the STCC for Volvo Cars with the C30, a car they developed completely from scratch.


First Look: GM EN-V Concept

Meet Jiao (Pride), Miao (Magic) and Xiao (Laugh).

by on Mar.24, 2010

No word on the price or production plans.

Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation  Group (SAIC) and its partner General Motors Company will show an electric vehicle concept at an exhibition in Shanghai at World Expo 2010 later this year.

So called, EN-V, short for Electric Networked-Vehicle, is a two-seat electric vehicle designed to “alleviate concerns surrounding traffic congestion, parking availability, air quality and affordability for tomorrow’s cities.”

Three EN-V models were unveiled today. They are said to represent three different characteristics that emphasize the “enjoyable nature” of future transportation – Jiao (Pride), Miao (Magic) and Xiao (Laugh).

These concepts will be showcased from May 1 through October 31 at the SAIC-GM Pavilion at World Expo 2010 Shanghai.

By combining GPS) with vehicle-to-vehicle communications and distance-sensing, EN-V concept can be driven manually or autonomously.

The Chinese auto market is the worlds largest and, unlike the U.S. and Europe markets it is still growing robustly.

EN-V’s platform has evolved from the Personal Urban Mobility and Accessibility (P.U.M.A.) prototype developed by Segway, which debuted in April 2009 at the New York Auto Show.      (more…)