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The Latest News And Reviews
Throughout The Car Industry

Categories: Hybrid / Green

smart fortwo Electric Drive Gets Revamped For Frankfurt

On: Fri, Aug 19, 2011 at 9:17AM | By: Chris Weiss

Smart ForTwo Electric Drive Gets Revamped For Frankfurt test 2

Other cars, like the Nissan Leaf and Ford Focus Electric, may get all the ink, but they're not the only fully electric options on the market. Sure, the Mercedes-backed smart fortwo Electric Drive is a little goofy, and God forbid you ever get into a crash in the tiny two-seater, but it's an ultra-compact, fully electric ride that's hard to beat for city driving. Just think about how nice it must be to park that car on crowded city streets and at events.

An updated version of the smart fortwo Electric Drive will make its debut at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show next month. Mercedes has addressed some complaints in redesigning the EV.

The Luxury Volt: Cadillac To Send Converj Concept To Production

On: Tue, Aug 16, 2011 at 12:09PM | By: Chris Weiss

The Luxury Volt: Cadlillac To Send Converj Concept To  test 2

The striking Cadillac Converj concept debuted at the 2009 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, with word a year or so thereafter that it was on its way to production. Then, production plans were officially canceled, and the Converj became what so many other concept cars have become: a rare, pretty hunk of fiberglass and metal never to be driven by paying customers. According to a new report, the Converj is back on the table and will be sharing the range-extending plug-in powertrain with the Chevy Volt.

GreenCarReports says that a GM insider confirmed that the Converj has been given the official green light by GM execs. It is likely to hit the market in 2013 as a 2014 model.

Audi Shows Off Light, Green 'Urban Concept'

On: Fri, Aug 12, 2011 at 5:22PM | By: Chris Weiss

Audi Shows Off Light, Green 'Urban Concept'  test 2

After an inadvertent reveal via spy shot, Audi has provided some official information and pictures of its Urban Concept. The car, which will make its debut at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show next month, takes compact and lightweight to the next level.

This one is definitely more of a fully conceptual, tinkering-with-ideas-type concept than a preview of a future Audi car. Audi describes it:

"The Audi urban concept is not based on any previous model—its development is solely oriented on the strict principles of lightweight construction, efficiency and reduction. The result is a concept car with no unnecessary weight, and one that concentrates on the pure essence of sporty motion."

2012 Nissan Versa: A Great Investment!

On: Fri, Aug 12, 2011 at 1:48PM | By: Lou Ruggieri

2012 Nissan Versa: A Great Investment! test 2

Unless you've been hiding under a rock somewhere, it should come as no surprise that the US economy is in a bit of turmoil as of late (well, for a while actually, but even more so lately). The stock market is down 600 points one day, up 400 the next, gold is up to about a million dollars an ounce, and America's sterling credit rating just got a kick in the teeth. Fun times! So as our GDP comes dangerously close to zero, odds are we are going to see consumers scaling back even more than they have been recently.

But, such is life. Just when you really start making progress with your savings account, that's when the water pump on your 1998 Cutlass Ciera convertible goes and, although you've gotten used to the rickety seat, and the window that doesn't fully close, or the horn that doesn't always blow, not to mention that weird shake in the steering wheel at around 68 mph, or that slight pull to the left when you have to slam on the brakes, shelling out another $600 for a replacement pump on a car whose company doesn't even exist anymore just doesn't make much financial sense, and lo and behold, it's time for a new car! But after being out of the new car game for two decades, it can be quite intimidating for some, leaving them wondering where to even begin. Well, your local Nissan dealership might just be the place, because the 2012 Versa is a legitimate automobile that can fit into just about any budget.


Bristol Developing A 200-MPH Hybrid For 2013

On: Thu, Aug 11, 2011 at 4:31PM | By: Chris Weiss

Bristol Developing a 200-MPH Hybrid For 2013 test 2

Cars like the Jaguar CX-75 and Porsche 918 Spyder have us pretty excited for the next-generation uses of "green" technology. These cars highlight that hybrids can compete with any car on the track, and can do it while offering a bit more efficiency. According to Edmunds, there's another hybrid supercar coming within the next few years, and it's coming from tiny specialty British automaker Bristol Cars.

BMW i4 And i5 Rumored

On: Wed, Aug 10, 2011 at 5:26PM | By: Chris Weiss

BMW i4 And i5 Rumored test 2

When BMW officially introduced its "i" sub-brand, it announced two initial vehicles under the brand: the i8 (aka Vision EfficientDynamics) and the i3 (aka Megacity Vehicle). Given that disparity, it was quite easy to read between the lines: BMW will build a whole model line-up between the 3 and the 8. A recent rumor originating on BMW Blog provides a look at the next i models on tap.

According toBMW Blog's source, BMW is already planning an i4 and i5. The i4 will essentially be a sporty two-seater based on the i3 city car. While it will be based on the i3 and may share that model's all-electric drivetrain, it will be positioned as a more affordable i8, so expect to see some fluid lines and styling.

Tesla-Powered RAV4 To Be Assembled In Canada

On: Sat, Aug 6, 2011 at 12:09PM | By: Chris Salamone

Toyota RAV4 EV test 2

In a joint venture, Toyota aims to have Tesla provide an electric powertrain for next year’s RAV4 EV. Amidst confusion as to where the vehicles would actually be assembled, Toyota Motor Corp. recently announced that the upcoming RAV4 electric vehicle would be built in-house next year, rather than at the Tesla Motors Inc. plant in California. The companies said, just yesterday, that Toyota’s Tesla-powered EV would be assembled in Woodstock, Ontario—the current home of RAV4 production.

Thus far, neither Toyota nor Tesla have provided either production volume estimates or pricing for the RAV4 EV. However, we do know that Toyota will cut a check for $100 million to Tesla for an electric powertrain made to fit the RAV4. Having a specific dollar amount tends to suggest that this arrangement will probably be for a pre-determined quantity and duration, rather than a completely open deal to provide goods as needed. Models should begin arriving in dealerships in 2012.

2013 Aston Martin Cygnet: Not A Bond Girl in Sight!

On: Fri, Aug 5, 2011 at 9:04AM | By: Lou Ruggieri

2013 Aston Martin Cygnet test 2

My, the world has changed, hasn't it? It seems like only yesterday a young, virile Sean Connery was racing around in an Aston Martin DB5, beating the villains, getting the girl, and all was right with the world. Ever since the time of Goldfinger, Aston Martin has still kept a very Bond-like cachet about it that exuded from most every model they have created for public consumption—a subtle "Yes, I am a little better than you" attitude that seemed somehow... accepted... over the course of time. But, all that glitz and glamor seems to have come and gone with the advent of the Aston Martin Cygnet.

Fisker Karma Deliveries Begin [Finally]

On: Wed, Aug 3, 2011 at 5:20PM | By: Chris Weiss

Fisker Karma Deliveries Begin [Finally] test 2

The Fisker Karma may not perform quite like the Bugatti Veyron just yet, but it is one of the most compelling plug-ins that we've seen yet. And after nothing but delay after delay after price increase after delay, it's finally making its way out to customers.

Despite reports that Leonardo DiCaprio would be the very first to receive his Karma, the automaker kept it a little closer to home for its first delivery. Fisker Chairman Ray Lane took the keys to the very first Karma (in somewhat of a creepy, over the top moment, if you ask me), and ushered in the official Fisker era. Lane's Karma is a 2012 Signature Series in 'Silver Mirage.'

VW Cries Out: New MPG Standard Tough On Cars, Gentle On Trucks

On: Mon, Aug 1, 2011 at 3:27PM | By: Chris Salamone

Obama Announces New Fuel Economy Standards test 2

While many automakers flocked to support President Obama’s proposed increase to mileage standards, Volkswagen has made it abundantly clear that the plan requiring an average of 54.5 mpg by 2025 shows favoritism toward automakers producing trucks. Volkswagen US spokesman Tony Cervone claimed that while passenger cars would have to meet the stringent demand of 5% annual improvements, light trucks—a segment in which VW is noticeably absent—would have to achieve only 3.5%

New Transmission To Give Future Fiskers Veyron-Level Performance?

On: Mon, Aug 1, 2011 at 9:01AM | By: Chris Weiss

New Transmission To Give Future Fiskers Veyron-Level Performance? test 2

Henrik Fisker. He's a man that I'm beginning to know for two distinctly different reasons. Reason 1: He designs a helluva beautiful car. Reason 2: He tends to make bold (exaggerated?) claims like few other top-level execs that I've seen.

A few months ago, Fisker prophetized that electric cars are poised to be as successful as smartphones and flat-screen TVs. Possible, but way too early to tell. Currently, that just looks like overconfidence and exaggeration.

This week, Fisker made an equally bold, possibly foolish, proclamation: a new gearbox that's under development will one day help electric cars to deliver "Veyron levels of performance."