Published on October 16th, 2015 | by Zachary Shahan0
Electric Vehicle, Transit, & Bike News Roundup (& Personal Travel News)
October 16th, 2015 by Zachary Shahan
I’m headed to Florida (from Europe) on Saturday, and will have an extremely busy week there, so I don’t expect to do news roundups during this time. If you want to keep an eye on the latest and coolest electric vehicle stories beyond those published on CleanTechnica, I recommend you watch EV Obsession and Gas2! In the meantime, here’s some cool EV news from around:
The BMW i8 is a stunningly beautiful plug-in hybrid with wicked acceleration. But it was also a lab where BMW introduced some innovative technology to use in future vehicles. BMW i8 eDrive technology offers superb drive quality (or as the video below points out, “exceptionally efficient performance”) with all-electric driving and zero tailpipe emissions when the battery is juiced.
A Tesla Model S and one of Google’s autonomous cars were apparently involved in a crash recently in California, according to the state’s Department of Motor Vehicles website, thus raising the important question — what exactly happens when these two technologies meet?
Use of the well regarded eMotorWerks JuiceNet platform for smart-grid EV (electric vehicle) charging will now be an option for those utilizing ClipperCreek’s EV charging stations, according to a recent email sent to EV Obsession.
The largely francophone Canadian province of Quebec is planning to invest around $420 million into its new electric vehicle support program over the next 5 years, according to recent reports. The new electric vehicle (EV) support plan — dubbed “Propulser le Québec par l’électricité” (Driving Quebec With Electricity) — coming via the province’s Liberal government.
I have ridden several electric motorcycles, but never one at the track, so I anticipated the Lightning LS-218 would be a bit different. This particular machine was actually slated for customer delivery and, looking at the exquisitely fabricated carbon-fiber bodywork, I was acutely aware that crashing this bad boy was not an option.
With a 235 mile range, 7 min. battery swap, and a 0-60 time of just 5 seconds, the Eindhoven STORM Pulse is the world’s first great electric touring bike!
The 2016 Cadillac ELR won’t out-sprint a Tesla Model S, but General Motors’ now-quicker luxury 2+2 makes it another kind of upscale alternative to the Chevy Volt.
The Volkswagen Board has a plan to introduce new plug-in, electric and diesel technology to all its cars and bring out a new VW Phaeton that is electric.
What happens to performance and fuel economy when you “fix” a Volkswagen diesel that can’t pass emissions? As this video shows: it ain’t good.
Volkswagen’s cheater software was not the work of a couple of rogue engineers, as claimed by Volkswagen U.S. CEO Michael Horn. According to a report by German’s Spiegel magazine, and confirmed by a Dailykanban source in Wolfsburg, “at least 30 managers” at Volkswagen were involved. They are about to be suspended, some possibly already have been.
Reeling from the negative press that began when it was revealed that VW had programmed their diesel cars to lie about their real-world emissions performance from 2009 to the present (almost 11 million cars are affected worldwide), the company is scrambling to jam a finger in the dike until it figures out what to do next. Oddly enough, VW surpassed Toyota just a few months ago to become the largest automaker in the world. But now sales have gone over a cliff because of the news.
Rumors have begun to circulate that Elon Musk intends to send a Tesla Model X to the moon as a publicity stunt…. As one can probably surmise, it’s extremely unlikely that the rumor has anything to it. And, for that matter, it probably originated on some satire website somewhere — before some unwitting (poor sap) spread it around.
Those wondering when exactly Signature Model X buyers will begin receiving their electric SUVs may be interested to hear about a recent post on the Tesla Motors Club forum. It concerns an email received by one of those who reserved a Signature version of the Model X.
When it unveiled the sold-out Tesla Model X to the world on September 29, Tesla revealed for the first time some of the car’s unique features, including individually adjustable single pillar rear seats, self opening and closing front doors and a Bioweapon Defense Mode built into the Model X climate control system.
While discussing electric vehicles, people will often ask questions about the puzzling manner in which the auto industry approaches EVs. Some common questions include:
· Why are there no long-range EVs competing with Tesla?
· Why doesn’t anybody make a $20k EV for the masses?
· Why do I not see EV ads – or, why do the ads not make sense?
· If EVs are so great, why doesn’t everybody drive one? (This one is rarely a direct question, but often implied by other questions)
Tesla is unhappy with a new Danish tax plan that will raise the cost of its cars by 180%. It says it will file a protest with the European Union soon.
Tesla board member and venture capitalist Steve Jurvetson showcased the Model X falcon wing alongside the ubiquitous DeLorean gull wing doors during last week’s STVP Future Fest event at Stanford. Jurvetson was one of six people that received the limited-edition Founders Series Model X (Google’s Sergey Brin was also a recipient) at the launch event in Fremont, California. With so few Model Xs on the road, many of its features and real world driving characteristics still remain shrouded in mystery. Luckily, Jurvetson has been quick to tease with pictures and even short videos of his Model X, one of which was an insightful look at how rain behaves against an all-glass panoramic windshield.
Given WSJ’s usual string of hit pieces, I am pleasantly surprised to see them publish this: How Tesla Leaves its Rivals Playing Catch Up — WSJ, offering an agreeable lay of the land in light of recent events affecting German carmakers. “The Big Three German auto makers only wish they could catch the tail of Mr. Musks rocket.”
Another day, another drag-race featuring the Tesla P85D going head-to-head with a “supercar.” Since these races seem to be so popular with our readers — and also since CEO Elon Musk himself linked to the video via his Twitter account — it seems worth doing a quick recount of events here.
All runs performed in Ludicrous mode at Max Battery setting. Battery at 90% for the first run. Due to evening traffic considerations, these runs were all performed in the same direction and were slightly downhill. Uphill runs will be performed tomorrow. Racelogic performance box with external antenna used to record the times.
There are quite a few DC charging stations appearing that have CCS plugs so it would be nice if Tesla would provide an adapter. In the past the argument was that there weren’t any charging stations, but that is rapidly changing.
Tesla’s basic warranty for the Model S covers 50,000 miles or 4 years, whichever comes first. Once that point is reached, you have 30 days to decide on whether you want to further extend warranty and sign up for the Tesla Extended Service Agreement (ESA).
The once upon a time theoretical competitor to Tesla, Fisker Automotive — now known as Karma Automotive — just held a job fair for future workers in Southern California’s Inland Empire (east of Los Angeles), according to recent reports.
Nissan Motors, the industry leader responsible for the very well regarded Nissan LEAF electric vehicle, will be unveiling a new electric concept car — by the name of “the Teatro” — at the fast-approaching Tokyo Motor Show, according to recent reports.
A new electric SUV with a range of 125 miles (200 kilometers) by the name of the E-3D SUV was recently unveiled by ZAP and Jonway Auto at an electric vehicle product launch dealership meeting, according to a new press release.
LEAF batteries make their way into a Mazda Miata via a student team.
The Mitsubishi eX concept will go on display in Tokyo later this month. It is an all electric 4 wheel drive SUV with a range of 250 miles, says the company.
A new energy buffer system for charging stations utilizing used (second-life) electric vehicle batteries has been developed by the UK-based company Future Transport Systems, according to recent reports. With the use of the new system — the FTS E-STOR concept — higher capacity EV fast-charging from a 3 kilowatt (kW) electrical connection is possible.
Local officials, planners, and other civic leaders have joined together to look at how the city can bring neighborhoods split by freeways back together again.
Alfred Morris, a top NFL running back for the Washington Redskins, is always looking for an advantage on the football field. “I’ve never been the biggest, fastest or strongest,” he says, “but if I can outlast my opponent, then I can win.”
What’s the number 1 bicycle city in the US? Well, let’s just say that if you’re wearing a suit and tie on your work, you probably live in Chicago!
Kyle Wagenschutz, a nonprofit bike shop director turned city official who’s helped drive a big shift toward bike-friendliness in Memphis, was one of 11 Americans named Thursday as helping the country “win the future” with smart transportation policy.
The workout-tracking app Strava provided generous access to its data to allow a compare and contrast exercise in how people ride bikes in 12 of the most famous cities in the world.
Last year, 104 million people rode a bicycle at least once. This is just one fact that throws into question a number of myths about who rides bikes. This infographic explores seven of those myths and uses information from our U.S. Bicycling Participation Study to get to the truth behind them. Visit our Participation Study and the PeopleForBikes Statistics Library for even more stats that will challenge your assumptions. Read more about these seven myths here.
It’s simple, according to this Washington Post column: better buses make a better city.
MARTA, or the Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority, is the eight largest rapid transit system in the US, and it is becoming a much more attractive option — with Wi-Fi access granted to passengers.
October 7 marked the celebration of the fifteenth annual International Walk to School Day. Schools in more than 40 countries across the globe participated in the event—including the U.S., Turkey, Brazil and China—encouraging students to walk.
The tragedy on Livingston Avenue could have been avoided, but the city of New Brunswick’s concern was with motorists—not pedestrians.
Elio Motors is waiting on $25 million of crowd-funded money to build 25 new prototypes in Detroit, but wasn’t that the plan 2 years ago?
Argonne Study Finds Lightweight Material Substitution Increases Vehicle-Cycle GHGs, But Results in Total Life-Cycle Benefit
A team at Argonne National Laboratory has taken a closer look at vehicle-cycle (all processes related to vehicle manufacturing) and vehicle total life-cycle (vehicle-cycle plus fuel cycle—i.e., the use phase) impacts of substituting lightweight materials into vehicles.
It’s big, it’s roomy, it floats down the highway like an ocean vessel, and it gets 40 MPG. Is there anything to NOT love about he 2015 Toyota Avalon Hybrid?
BMW will be suspending it DriveNow carsharing program in San Francisco in November, according to recent reports. The move comes after a bit more than 3 years of successful operation in the city, and, apparently, is largely the result of parking spot scarcity in the very expensive city.
Check out our new 93-page EV report, based on over 2,000 surveys collected from EV drivers in 49 of 50 US states, 26 European countries, and 9 Canadian provinces.