Archives – July, 2015

Peugeot Boss says Hybrid Car Production is Closer than Ever

Bilbao_05_2012_IBILEK_carsharing_2439After PSA boss Carlos Tavares was seen testing the 493 bhp car, it is clear that Peugeot Sport’s much discussed 308 R Hybrid looks closer to production than ever. Peugeot boss Maxime Picaa asserted at that the company was quite advanced with development during the unveiling of the concept car in Shanghai. He also hinted of the high possibility of the car’s production start. The big question that was raised is with regard to how the automaker was going to commercialize the hybrid car. The pricing or cost was also another question raised concerning the hybrid car that is yet to be produced.

The petrol-electric power train of the Peugeot 308 R Hybrid gives the engine of the Peugeot RCZ R coupe two electric motors. 493 bhp and 538 lb. ft. of torque is the combined result that is sent to the four wheels. Hence, the potential carbon dioxide emissions of the car are just 70 g/km, while the sprint time of 4.0 seconds can be achieved for 0-62 mph. The driving modes are Track, Hot Lap, and the ZEV. Out of the different modes, a petrol engine supplemented by the rear motor is what is used by the 296 bhp Road mode. Track cuts output to 395 bhp while Hot Lap maximizes the car’s power. The acceleration booster is the function of the front motor. The electric motors are solely used by the ZEV mode. No word has been given yet concerning the range of the car on electric power alone. However, on a fast charger, Peugeot claims a 45 minute full recharge.

To deal with the extra power, the 308 has surprisingly been substantially modified. In comparison to the standard car, front and rear tracks have both been widened by 80mm. The whole braking system has been upgraded and the wheels are 19-inch alloys with 235/35 R19 tires. The 308 R concept that was first seen at the Frankfurt motor show in 2013 is reprised by the two-tone exterior, though the blue and black paint of the hybrid car has glass particles that add shine. Four individual sports sets on the inside have fawn leather as upholstery and data is projected into the driver’s line of sight via a head-up display. Hybrid sports cars were cited by the head of Peugeot as the company’s future. So far, the company has spent a whole year developing the car, which has been deemed to be very drivable. The car will be the most powerful production Peugeot if and when it reaches the showrooms.





Leave a Comment July 31, 2015

Car Seat Check for 2016’s Version of Hyundai Sonata Hybrid

512px-2011_Hyundai_Sonata_Hybrid_--_07-20-2011The hybrid model of Sonata has taken over regardless of the fact that the automaker’s average-sized sedan was set to be redesigned this year. An all-new Sonata hybrid will be released in 2016 and for even better fuel efficiency; a new plug-in hybrid version will be designed. The regular hybrid model was used to test for the efficiency of car sets. This hybrid model earns straight-A-grades, thanks to its open latch anchors and ample legroom. The car’s second row is fitted with two car seats.

What is liked about the car are the two latch anchor sets that have an easy usability. There are plastic covers located on top of these anchors and accessing them necessitates pushing back with the Latch. There is enough room for the back infant seat as well as convertible seats. To accommodate either child seat, there is no need to push forward the passenger seat. On the rear shelf, there are tether anchors that are not only clearly marked but also accessible. The convertible’s tether strap at the top can be connected easily without difficulties. The fitting of the booster on the somewhat curved seat is perfect. To make it easy for young ones to fasten up on their own, there are buckles with stable bases.

With respect to the grading scale, a model gets the highest grade for having enough room for both the child and car seats. The front-passenger or driver legroom is not affected. Additionally, finding and connecting to tether and latch anchors is extremely easy. Issues associated with seat contouring or head restraint are few to none. A car model gets a B-grade when it has plenty of space with a one or two issues related to fitting or connection. There may also be issues regarding gaining access to the third row. A C-grade is given to a model for its marginal room and difficulty in getting to other rows. A D-grade refers to insufficient room while an F-grade is awarded when the seats are unsafe and do not fit.

Editors Jennifer Newman and Jennifer Greiger of are certified technicians specializing in installation of child safety seats. A Graco TurboBooster, a convertible seat from Britax Marathon and a Graco SnugRide are used by for the Car Seat Check. For drivers and passengers who are up to 6 foot tall, there is an option of adjusting the front seats. Behind the driver’s seat sits the booster while at the back of the seat of front passenger, there is convertible and infant seats.



Leave a Comment July 31, 2015

Competitors of Toyota Prius

voltWhen many people visualize hybrid cars, the Toyota Prius is the car they almost exclusively think of. In America, the term Prius may as well be interchangeable with the word hybrid, thanks to some brilliant work by Toyota. The Prius is still a comfortable, reliable car that gets spectacular gas mileage, despite the fact that it is pretty outdated. The Prius family has grown since its inception and there are quite a number of cars that are marketed using the Prius name. Although Prius’ are great hybrid cars, this does not necessarily mean that they are the sole hybrid car worth purchasing. Actually, there are other options that need to be considered. Different models have different average fuel economy and some deals are better than others. The list of available features is huge depending on the model and these models are of a wide range of sizes and shapes. Buying a Prius by default may be easy for hybrid buyers, however, shopping around may reveal a better car.

One great hybrid option that may give Prius a run for its money is the BMW i3 with a range extender. This hybrid car has a starting price of $46,250 and it has been given an EPA rating of117 mpg. This car also comes in form of a pure electric car excluding the range extender. However, it would be wise to add it as an option for drivers who need to use it as primary transportation form. BMW i3 is a true series hybrid despite having an engine, whose role is to serve as a generator for battery recharging. From the ground up, it was designed as an electric car and was the first of its kind to be mass produced and constructed by the use of plastic reinforced with fiber.

The Chevrolet Volt is another alternative worth considering. This car’s starting price is $34,170 and its EPA rating is 98mpg. Most of the time, Chevy Volt uses the engine for powering its wheels and is a series hybrid in terms of operation. This implies that this is an electric vehicle that charges the batteries using the engine as a range-extender. Consequently, it is possible for drivers to use electric mode to drive around town then recharge at night. The way a driver drives and how often they use the engine is what would determine the real world fuel economy. Generally, the Chevrolet Volt is a great option for people who would prefer an electric car and cannot spring for a Tesla.




Leave a Comment July 24, 2015

Types of Hybrid Cars


Parallel hybrid.

Parallel hybrid.

A car that uses more than one type of onboard energy source to propel it is known as a hybrid car. Practically, it implies that a regular combustion engine coupled with an electric motor and a battery pack are what make up a hybrid car. Sometimes, people use electric cars and hybrid cars interchangeably thinking that they are the same thing. But it is essential to know that the two cars are extremely different and employ different concepts. Gasoline engines determine the rate of energy combustion of hybrid cars. The engines’ extra energy that is used for car propulsion is recycled by electric motors. This energy goes to waster under normal situations. Since petrol-electric hybrids are more efficient and cost effective compared to regular cars, they are more in practice.

With respect to how a hybrid car works, it is important to keep in mind that not all cars that have hybrid powertrains have the same attributes. This means that not all hybrid vehicles would work similarly. The different working patterns of hybrid cars are attributed to their different layouts. Starting with the series hybrids, these are among the oldest and first forms of hybrid cars. Their layouts are characterized by drive wheels that are turned via electric motors. Hence, it is necessary for such cars to have pretty large motors with high power. However, these cars are not purely electric cars. There is a dedicated mill that equally supports the engine while consuming fuel and emitting wastes. The major function of the engine is aiding the generator in electricity delivery. This electricity is eventually used in propelling the vehicle. The 2012 Fisker Karms and the 2014 BMW are great examples series hybrid cars.

Another category is parallel hybrid cars, which are not only economical, but also simple novel cars. The output of electric motors and engines in these types of cars works in combination to give high energy. The primary function of the engine is propelling the vehicle. Plug-in hybrids are another category worth mentioning. Though they are not really a type of hybrid cars, they may be grounded on a hybrid layout. In 2010, plug-in hybrid cars entered the auto market with the launch of the Chevrolet Volt. Parallel-series hybrids are a combination of series and parallel hybrid cars. The Fusion hybrids, Toyota hybrids, Ford’s C-Max and a few Lexus novel vehicles use this type of layout. In terms of efficiency and speeds, these systems have proved to be the most successful ones.


Leave a Comment July 24, 2015

Tesla’s Model X Expected to Increase Company Sales

Tesla_Model_X_(8403033571)According to Tesla Motors’ CEO, Elon Musk, the next leg of growth for the company will be driven by the help of the Model X sports utility vehicle (SUV). He hopes and believes that the sales volume of the electric car manufacturering will be doubled by Model X. Musk said during an interview with CNBC that Tesla’s volume is likely to double because there is an almost equal demand for SUV’s and sedans. This would imply that Tesla’s volume would be doubling, if the Model X is well received. Previously, James Albertine, Stifel Nocolaus analyst had suggested that the stock price of Tesla Motors could be boosted by Model X to as high as 400 dollars per share. The analyst was positive that the electric car manufacturer would enjoy a huge success with the Model X.

With respect to Model X’s production, Musk said that nothing had changed since Tesla’s shareholder conference. He further said that by the end of summer, Tesla Motors might ship Model X. According to Musk, there was uncertainty as to the period the company would take for its production of the electric SUV to be ramped up. Since Tesla’s initial announcement in 2012, Model X launching has been delayed for more than a year now. The company’s production facility in Fremont was recently visited by some Wall Street analysts who strongly believe that Model X will be launched on its target schedule.

Estimates by Morgan Stanley show that less than 100 Model X units will be rolled out by Tesla Motors in the 3rd quarter and by the end of the year, around 3,000 units will be rolled out. Bank of America Merrill Lynch analysts on the other hand projected that around 5,000 Model S units will be shipped by Tesla Motors this year. Twenty-thousand pre-orders for Model X have already been received. The sales target for Tesla Motors are around 55,000 vehicle units this year. To achieve its target sales volume, the company is dependent of the Model X. Tesla Motors reported earlier this month that its deliveries for Model S had increased by 52 % during the second quarter, which translated to 11,507 units. A total of 21,522 Model S units had already been delivered by the electric car manufacturer between January and June. This translated to about 40% of the target sales volume of Tesla for 2015. Last week, an analyst of Jefferies LLC, Dan Doley, said that the demand for new vehicles was high.





Leave a Comment July 17, 2015

A Review of the 2015 Nissan Pathfinder Hybrid ST

Nissan_Pathfinder_II_front_20100425These days, almost every street corner might have diesel-electric and petrol electric hybrid cars, from SUVs and exotic sports to heavy transports. The life of Pathfinder began as Nissan Patrol’s little brother. The introduction of the X-trail, a compact SUV, marked a seismic shift. The Pathfinder was beefed up by Nissan, which made it a viable alternative to Murano, the new street smart car. Murano continuously displayed variable transmission and an outlook of sports coupe-style. Now to its Pathfinder range, Nissan has slotted in a petrol-electric hybrid. A supercharged four-cylinder petrol engine of 2.5 liter is used in combination with a electric motor of 15 kW. This results in a performance of V6 with four-cylinder SUV fuel consumption. The test vehicle used was the ST 2WD entry-level version whose market price is more than $39,990.

With respect to engines and transmissions, a 2.5-liter supercharged four-cylinder petrol engine powers the Pathfinder ST as well as an electric motor of 15kW. A maximum total out of 188kW and 330 Nm is given out. The torque curve of the Pathfinder is quite the same as that the model powered by V6 petrol. An intelligent dual-clutch system is utilized by the highly efficient petrol/electric powertrain, claiming a total cycle fuel consumption of 8.4 L/100km with the 2WD variant. Operating in conjunction with the petrol engine is the first clutch while the second clutch controls the electric motor engagement. Each of the operations depends on the location and the manner in which the car is moving. Nissan’s latest-generation Xtronic CVT puts power to the ground. This results in a reduction in fuel consumption by 15 %. Nissan has claimed that the petrol consumed by Pathfinder Hybrid is 15% less than that of theV6 petrol car model. During braking and deceleration, the electric torque-assist motor serves as a power generator.

In terms of design, the Pathfinder is a true seven-seater with a length of more than five meters and a width of about two meters. The Nissan signature V-Motion grille is carried by a bold front. The vehicle has a touch of prestige, thanks to brushed metal roof rails, chrome door handles, privacy glass and a rear roof-mounted spoiler. The Pathfinder Hybrid is light on information technology because of its sharp price positioning. This hybrid car has been put out on its own in the SUV field by a couple of clever pieces of technology. The presence of undesirable sounds is monitored by microphones located in-cabin.




Leave a Comment July 17, 2015

Peugeot’s 308 R-Hybrid Set to Enter Production

Bilbao_05_2012_IBILEK_carsharing_2439Peugeot’s boss has been tweeting spy pictures of the 308 R-Hybrid out testing. According to sources at the firm, Peugeot’s shock entrant to the Shanghai Motor Show, the 308-R Hybrid concept is likely to enter production. To confirm the rumors, two images of PSA boss, Carlos Tavares attempting a test mule of the 493 bhp mega-hatch were tweeted by Peugeot CEO Maxime Picat. According to senior company sources who spoke at an event, the images tweeted were those of the R Hybrid’s test mule. With little giveaway on the huge performance on offer, the R-Hybrid looks like a standard 308 GTI at a glance with some simple disguises. Picat said during a previous conversation with Auto Express that the automaker is well developed with the car and is currently in commercialization process.

We could see the car on the road within the next two to three years, assuming Peugeot can actually make the business case stack up. Details concerning the number of petrol electric maga-hatch that the firm plans to make are not yet out. Picat will be positioning Peugeot alongside Citroen and DS since the 308 GTI hot hatch has already been unveiled. It has been claimed that the Peugeot is sporty, as will be seen gradually as 22% of the 308 sales in Europe are already accounted for by the GT and GT-Line models. This will be followed by yet a different hot model, as well as the Hybrid R later on.

With regard to the full specifications of Peugeot’s 308 R Hybrid, the car will be lightly centered on the 308 R Hybrid concept. The Paris Motor show was the very first one to showcase this concept last year, which took performance a step further compared to what had been promised originally. The front and rear tracks have been widened by Peugeot Sport by 80 mm, while converting the 308 into all-wheel drive and adding beefier brakes. A combination of the 276 bhp 1.6 liter four-cylinder turbo found in the RCZ R is what makes up the powertrain. Bolted to each axle are two 114 bhp electric motors. Peugeot has claimed to offer a top speed of 155 mph that is electronically limited and a range of 0-62 mph in 4.0 seconds. The different degrees of performance of the 308 R Hybrid is accounted for by four driving modes, ZEV, Road, Track and Hot Lap. This hybrid car develops the full 493 bhp and 730 Nm torque in its most extreme setting.

Leave a Comment July 10, 2015

Tesla’s Model S is Highest Selling Plug-in Vehicle for 2015’s First Half

14_Tesla_Model_SThe Tesla Model S has outsold Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf, despite being a luxury product by a startup priced 2-4 times more than the two mentioned plug-in electric cars this year. In America, Model S is thus far 2015’s top selling plug-in electric vehicle. The estimated sales of 11,900 in the Unites States are clearly more than the 9,816 Nissan Leaf sales and 5,622 Chevy Volt sales between January and June 2015. The second-quarter delivery report that was released by Tesla further confirms these figures. Last month the automaker was due to surpass a 75,000 global cumulative sales milestone. Tesla did cross this milestone, publishing info that 78,334 units were sold in the first half of 2015. Sales tracker, Mario Duran notes that if Tesla keeps this present pace, it will manage to sell its 100,000th car across the world prior to end of 2015.

The Volt/Ampera has sold approximately 95,000 and the Leaf has sold more than 180,000 units since their launches one and a half years before the Model S in December 2010. Tesla has kept the Model S car fresh through updates, despite the fact that the car was launched in June 2012 and hence July is the first month of its fourth year. The automaker also updates customers on the deletions and additions made to the car’s specifications. For instance, Tesla introduced the 691-hp, all-wheel-drive Model S P85D last fall. This was followed up with an all-wheel 70D this year, which was a substitute to the rear-wheel-drive P60. Expansion of Tesla’s presence in Asia and Europe has also been done by Tesla with general increasing success. Networks of superchargers providing free lifetime electricity for the cars are also being planted.

There has been a growing breed of Tesla’s supporters who are in favor of the gas-chewing ethos of the company, as well as the company’s vision seen to have aided in maintaining Tesla’s popularity. Tesla’s need is being seen by the public, which purchases its products and gets a neat vehicle. GM and Nissan as major automakers are gearing forward while getting money through the selling gas-reliant vehicles such as SUVs and some trucks. Nothing really is as cut and dried as the outlook could suggest, even through people may be quick to put a label to heros and villains. If there were not a huge demand for gas guzzlers, the major car makers would not be selling them. Tesla’s win this year is with more plug-in vehicles sold than any carmaker in the U.S is the bottom line.


Leave a Comment July 10, 2015

A Review of the 2015 Honda Accord Sport Hybrid

Honda_Accord_Hybrid_CR6_RearImported from Thailand, the 2015 Honda Accord Sport Hybrid is a medium-sized car with four doors and front-wheel drive. Its price is about $58,990 or more. This makes this sports hybrid car a major competitor for the Lexus IS300h, which is a compact sedan with a rear-wheel drive. The starting price for Toyota’s locally made Camry Hybrid is $35,490, which can go up to $41, 490. The V6L is the most expensive conventional Accord that can be purchased at $ 51,990. The top-line Accord at the mentioned price might experience the challenge of selling in a market with a waning demand for hybrid cars.

The sales of hybrid cars to private buyers are down by more than a third this year despite the arrival of a host of new modes. On the other hand, there are constant sales to fleets. Buyers can now save fuel with the arrival of diesels and petrol engines that are super efficient. Although Honda’s appearance on the inside is pretty old school, it would be a major appeal to predominantly male buyers’ profiles. It is definitely a car that boasts rich technology with its Intelligent Multi-Mode Drive (iMMD), the new-generation hybrid drive. The first hybrid sale for Honda was made in Australia with its Insight. However, the ground was later lost following the launch of mild hybrids that had modest electric motor outputs and failed to take off in electric-only mode. Hence, the standout fuel efficiency of their rivals wasn’t produced.

A major advantage of the 2015 Honda’s Accord Sports Hybrid is that it has a powertrain with the ability to make switches between hybrid, petrol and electric drive modes. The powertrain gives a combination of the new petrol engine with a capacity of 2.0 liters, a feature of hybrid cars, and a transmission that is continuously variable with double electric motors, a high-efficiency lithium-ion battery and a lockup clutch. Compared to the Camry’s 151KW power, the Accord Sports Hybrid has a power of 147 KW. The two motors in the Honda’s new hybrid car function simultaneously as needed while getting power from a battery pack that is rear-mounted.

In combined driving, the automaker has claimed that this contributes to 4.6L/10Km, in comparison to 5.1L/100Km of a similarly sized Toyota Camry. Electric energy for the battery is harvested through regenerative braking with the help of a novel setup for the electric brake. Compared to the conventional 2.4 Liter four-cylinder Accord, the Hybrid Accord weights 70kg more.



Leave a Comment July 3, 2015

Major Reasons Why Drivers Should Opt for Electric Cars

BMW_i3_04_2015_SFO_2904There are several reasons to own an electric car, without taking into consideration the painfully steep entry price. One of the major reasons is their lack of a gear box. This gives them rapid acceleration and smooth nimble driving, thanks to the instant, linear torque. Driving an electric car also expells fewer carbon emissions. Scientists have noted that to limit global warming, carbon emissions from the use of energy and other activities will have to go down towards zero. Electric cars have no exhaust. This means that there will be no need for costly pollution stacks like those planned for Sydney’s M4 expansion tunnel.

Electric cars cause less noise pollution. Driving such cars is a quiet experience and at speeds of less than 30km/h, a special noise is emitted and hence, pedestrians are not surprised. The fact that service station visits are unnecessary is another benefit of owning an electric car. Charging is mainly done in the evenings at the comfort of one’s home. The Energy Suppliers Association of Australia said that up to 500,000 electric vehicles could be handled charging at night and extra demand would be welcome. The running costs for electric cars are low. The cost per kilometer is about one-third of the operating cost of 2005 petrol-fueled X-Trail, even for green power. Maintenance costs are likely to be less too, with fewer moving parts.

With respect to their design, electric cars have a futuristic design with great chic styling, weight-saving carbon-fiber body, and a lack of engine block that increase occupant safety and crumple zone. Solar panels are also linked up and may be extra batteries. This means that the car’s reliance on the electric grid would be greatly reduced. Waste wariness is another benefit of owning an electric car. Driving efficiency is displayed by instant feedback, while energy is reclaimed by regenerative brakes when the accelerator is lifted off by the foot. At 11.7kwh/100km it is the best efficiency so far while 14kwh/100km is the average efficiency.

The electric car market is ripe for international sharing. For instance, there are 78,000 Autolib subscribers for its electric cars in Paris. Each subscriber pays $174 annually and for the first 20 minutes of use, about 3.66 euros. The firm, whose owner is Bollore, a French conglomerate, is expanding in the United States and London. This shows that the future is geared towards electric and hybrid cars. The novelty value adds to electric cars’ appeal. Since 2010, only about 800 electric cars have been sold in Australia. It is hoped that by 2020, more and more people will own electric cars.



Leave a Comment July 3, 2015

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