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Posts Tagged ‘EVs’

Green or Mean? Study Helps Shoppers Decide

Latest ACEEE guide helps car buyers pick green vehicles.

by on Feb.01, 2018

The BEV, plug-in and hydrogen versions of the Honda Clarity - named Green Car of the Year last November.

In recent months, it seems just about every automaker – from mainstream brands like General Motors, Toyota and Volkswagen to high-line marques such as Infiniti, Mercedes-Benz and Bentley – have announced plans to roll out what will be hundreds of new hybrids, plug-ins, pure battery-electric and hydrogen fuel-cell vehicles.

We can expect to see a wave of these green machines starting to flood the market by the beginning of the coming decade. But what if you’re in the market today and looking for something environmentally friendly? What are the market’s greenest – and meanest – models you can buy right now?

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The good news is that you have plenty of options, and some of them might come as a surprise, such as the Hyundai Ioniq which tops this year’s annual GreenerCars report. (more…)

Cadillac, Kia and Karma Take Green Car Honors

Expanding the options for environmentally friendly buyers.

by on Jan.26, 2018

Kia will have three versions of the Niro in production with the addition of an all-electric model.

It’s not always easy being green, as Kermit the Frog was fond of saying. Sales of environmentally friendly vehicles have lagged in an SUV-focused market. But at least three automakers are hoping they can gain a little momentum thanks to the green car trophies they’re taking home this week.

Kia nabbed honors as the Green SUV of the Year during a ceremony at the Washington, D.C. Auto Show with its new Niro crossover vehicle. Two other awards were presented by Green Car Journal, the sponsor of the awards, including Green Luxury Car of the Year, which went to the Karma Revero, and Connected Green Car of the Year, which was presented to the Cadillac CT6 Plug-in Hybrid.

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Despite slow sales for battery-based and other environmentally friendly vehicles, “Efficiency and improved environmental performance are being integrated in new models from virtually every vehicle class, with this gaining real momentum in the luxury, connected, and crossover/SUV arenas,” said Ron Cogan, the publisher of Green Car Journal.

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Britain’s Retro-carmaker Morgan Electrifies with New EV3

Battery power “plays an important role in Morgan’s future.”

by on Dec.20, 2017

The Morgan EV3 blends old and new, including ashwood framing, composite panels and electric drive.

It’s hard to find an automaker these days that isn’t going electric – even exotic brands like Aston-Martin, Bentley and Lamborghini. But Morgan?

The tiny British maker has made a handsome business out of being decidedly retro, even retaining the classic wood frames of yesteryear. So, when it unveiled a quirky, three-wheeled EV prototype in 2015 few took it seriously, even when it followed with a more production-ready version at the 2016 Geneva Motor Show.

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But the Morgan EV3 is about to become a reality with the help of Frazer-Nash Energy Systems, says Morgan Managing Director Steve Morris. “We have been working closely on optimizing the EV3’s architecture in every way to develop a car which will offer proven reliability range and cooling performance, combined with the pure driving experience that is expected of every hand-crafted Morgan.”

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Feds Launch Alt-Fuel Highway Network

Corridors will cover 25,000 miles, 55 routes in 35 states.

by on Nov.04, 2016

The new project should make it much easier for owners to find places to charge up on the road.

With the upcoming launch of longer-range, more affordable electric vehicles the auto industry is taking several critical steps towards making alternative power mainstream, but range anxiety isn’t yet a thing of the past.

Now, the federal government is taking steps to address the other big problem: a lack of places to charge electric vehicles. The plan announced by the Obama Administration will include 55 different interstates, covering 25,000 miles of highway in 35 states. Add in efforts to boost the availability of natural gas and other alternative fuels and the network grows to 85,000 miles of roadway.

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“Alternative fuels and electric vehicles will play an integral part in the future of America’s transportation system,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “We have a duty to help drivers identify routes that will help them refuel and recharge those vehicles and designating these corridors on our highways is a first step.”

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It’s (Almost) Hydrogen Day!

Have you hugged your fuel cell lately?

by on Oct.05, 2016

Honda's new Clarity fuel-cell vehicle is part of an onslaught of the vehicles that have hit U.S. roads in the last 18 months.

We’re not quite sure how it managed to nearly slip by us, but we’re coming up on National Hydrogen and Fuel-Cell Day. October 8th has been designated a day to promote awareness of this clean and green powertrain technology.

There are plenty of folks who believe hydrogen is the fuel of the future. And they can point to the small but growing number of vehicles that use the lightweight gas. In the coming weeks, Honda will launch its Clarity FCV to become the third fuel-cell maker on the U.S. market.

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Of course, not everyone is so optimistic. Elon Musk, the founder and CEO of Tesla Motors, calls them “fool cells.” Of course, he wants to sell you a battery-powered car, instead. Who is right? (more…)

Don’t Blame Battery-Cars for Plunging Oil Prices

Rising fuel economy likely a much bigger factor, says Navigant.

by on Mar.29, 2016

There'll be more battery-cars on the road in the years ahead, but not enough to bring oil prices crashing down, says Navigant.

Oil prices have tumbled sharply over the last year, and a variety of factors have led to the slide, including a weakening Chinese economy, as well as a reduction in demand among American motorists.

But battery-cars have had an almost negligible impact, and likely won’t have much of an impact going forward, despite some claims they’ve brought the oil market crashing to its knees. Far more credit goes to the rapid improvement in overall automotive fuel economy, suggests a new study by Navigant Research.

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Such claims are “sensationalist,” says a report by the technology research firm, which adds that a much more substantial factor likely to hold down oil prices is “not a particularly sexy conversation topic.” But the reality is that fleet-wide fuel economy is expected to increase 22% over the next decade, says Navigant, reducing demand by millions of barrels of oil a day.

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Chevrolet Planning to Launch 200-Mile Bolt Electric Vehicle in Late 2016

GM wants to “put a muzzle on” outspoken Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

by on Feb.06, 2015

The Chevy Bolt would deliver significantly longer range than almost any current battery-electric vehicle - for around $30,000. Photo by Len Katz.

General Motors will begin building a production version of its Chevrolet Bolt battery-electric concept vehicle in October 2016, several well-placed company sources told TheDetroitBureau.com, a move that will put GM into direct competition with California EV start-up Tesla Motors, as well as more traditional automakers such as Nissan and BMW.

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Unveiled at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit last month, the Chevy Bolt concept was expected to deliver about 200 miles of range per charge – more than double that of most of the electric vehicles currently on the market. That would address the issue of “range anxiety’ which, industry analysts say, has held back demand for battery-electric vehicles, or BEVs.

GM officials, meanwhile, said they would deliver the Bolt for around $30,000, which would put it much closer to the price tag of a comparable, gas-powered vehicle.

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New GM Electric Vehicle Could Take Aim at Tesla

Chevrolet Bolt expected to deliver 200-mile range at $30,000 price tag.

by on Jan.11, 2015

The nose of the current Chevrolet Volt, the first mass-market plug-in hybrid. It was redesigned for 2016. A pure electric Chevy Bolt could follow in 2017.

First came the Chevrolet Volt, now comes the Chevy Bolt. Even as General Motors gets ready to officially unveil an all-new version of its plug-in hybrid, various sources suggest the Detroit maker also will debut a concept version of a battery-electric vehicle at this week’s North American International Auto Show.

Significantly, the Chevrolet Bolt is expected to deliver as much as 200 miles range per charge. That would more than double what most of the current crop of electric vehicles can handle – and would be in line with what Tesla is thought to be targeting for the Model III, the mainstream EV it plans to launch in a couple years.

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And, at an estimated $30,000, GM would likely undercut the smaller Tesla model while coming in only slightly higher than some competing vehicles delivering half Bolt’s range, such as the Nissan Leaf, the Ford Focus Electric, and the current Chevrolet Spark, which can travel just 82 miles per charge.

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EVs May Not be as Green as They Seem

New study claims battery cars actually can worsen global warming.

by on Dec.16, 2014

Where does that electricity come from?

If you’ve been thinking about buying a new battery-electric vehicle in an effort to be kinder to the environment, a new study suggests you might want to think again. According to its authors, EVs might actually worsen global warming.

If you’re charging up your new battery-car using electricity generated from coal, it turns out, you’ll actually create nearly four times as much soot, while increasing the amount of CO2 going into the atmosphere – while also increasing smog deaths, according to the new study by the University of Minnesota.

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“It’s kind of hard to beat gasoline,” despite its bad reputation among environmentalists, said study co-author and engineering professor Julian Marshall. “A lot of the technologies that we think of as being clean,” he added, “are not better than gasoline.” (more…)

Nearly Half of All EVs Sold in California

Ten states generate 25% of EV volume

by on Dec.11, 2014

Despite the fact that Nissan Leaf buyers don't have to pay for gas as owners of an electric vehicle, EV sales are still less than 1% of new car sales.

Nearly half of all the battery-electric vehicles sold in the United States are going to customers in California, according to a new report by the U.S. Energy Information Administration, or EIA.

The report also noted that sales of plug-based vehicles, including plug-ins and pure battery-electric models, still constitute a tiny fraction of the total American vehicle fleet, with demand growing at a marginal pace despite a flood of new models.

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Along with California, motorists in Hawaii and Washington have been quickest to plug into the electric vehicle market, with at least three of every 1,000 registered vehicles in those states. In only three states – Virginia, Georgia and Oregon – have EVs reached more than two in 1,000. (more…)