Recharge Wrap-up: Ridesharing jeopardizes taxi medallion values

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A number of short green car news items. Today, how ridesharing is putting the hurt on taxi medallions and how EVs can get cleaner over time.

Continue reading Recharge Wrap-up: Ridesharing jeopardizes taxi medallion values

Recharge Wrap-up: Ridesharing jeopardizes taxi medallion values originally appeared on Autoblog on Sat, 20 Dec 2014 08:03:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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China’s answer to Elon Musk seeks license to build electric car

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Chinese tech billionaire Jia Yueting is trying to get a license to build electric cars in China, and he thinks that they could be a revolution there. Even if Jia doesn't make it, other companies are getting ready to jump into China's emerging EV marketplace.

Continue reading China's answer to Elon Musk seeks license to build electric car

China's answer to Elon Musk seeks license to build electric car originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 19 Dec 2014 18:32:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Bultaco returns with new offroad electric bike

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Spanish motorcycle brand Bultaco is back on the scene with its latest electric cycle. The Brinco is an electrically assisted moped made to traverse rough roads, with disc brakes and lots of suspension travel at the front and rear. Its four-horsepower motor can go about 19 miles on a charge or, you can start pedaling.

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Bultaco returns with new offroad electric bike originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 19 Dec 2014 15:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Tesla starts real-world beta testing of Model S battery swaps in California [UPDATE]

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Tesla has finally launched its long-awaited Model S battery swap technology. The first station, still in a limited beta test phase, is now open between Los Angeles and San Francisco in California.

Continue reading Tesla starts real-world beta testing of Model S battery swaps in California [UPDATE]

Tesla starts real-world beta testing of Model S battery swaps in California [UPDATE] originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 19 Dec 2014 13:07:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Next-gen Chevy Volt gets Corvette looks, adjustable regen levels

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2016 chevy volt

The hood may say "full speed ahead." The regenerative braking system says "slow down a bit." One person's automotive improvements is another's identity crisis, all in a day's work analyzing the new Chevrolet Volt.

The next-generation version of General Motors' first extended-range plug in will include design touches taken from to the new Chevrolet Corvette, GM's iconic sports car. Hexagonal taillights and a "taut" hood will be part of the new package, Automotive News says, citing General Motors design chief Ed Wilbur.

But does that mean the Volt is shedding much of its green-car cred? Not at all, if one considers that the Volt will also let the driver adjust the degree of regenerative braking he or she wants from behind the wheel. That means the driver can use steering-wheel paddles to dial up regenerative braking to recapture as much energy as possible and engage in "one-pedal" driving or turn it down to coast easier.

Check out the 55-second video below featuring GM executives Mark Reuss and Andrew Farah trying out the Volt's new regenerative-braking system that was first used on the Cadillac ELR. GM will have more details for us when it unveils the 2016 Chevy Volt at the North American Auto Show in Detroit next month. The new version is said to have a larger battery, a longer all-electric driving range and more power, but Chevy's been light on performance details so far.

Continue reading Next-gen Chevy Volt gets Corvette looks, adjustable regen levels

Next-gen Chevy Volt gets Corvette looks, adjustable regen levels originally appeared on Autoblog Green on Fri, 19 Dec 2014 08:01:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Tesla Model S drivers put way more miles on their cars than Nissan Leaf owners do (we think)

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Just a few weeks ago, Nissan announced that its customers have driven over a billion electric kilometers in the four years that the world's best-selling EV has been on the road. That heady milestone means, Nissan says, that the Leaf has saved 180 million kilograms of CO2 emissions around the world.

Continue reading Tesla Model S drivers put way more miles on their cars than Nissan Leaf owners do (we think)

Tesla Model S drivers put way more miles on their cars than Nissan Leaf owners do (we think) originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 18 Dec 2014 18:54:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Official: Tesla Model S drivers put way more miles on their cars than Nissan Leaf owners do (we think)

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Tesla Model S

Just a few weeks ago, Nissan announced that its customers have driven over a billion electric kilometers in the four years that the world's best-selling EV has been on the road. That heady milestone means, Nissan says, that the Leaf has saved 180 million kilograms of CO2 emissions around the world.

The billion kilometers have been split among the 147,000 Leaf vehicles that Nissan has sold. Well, not really, since the billion kilometer total only counts Leaf EVs registered with CarWings, which Nissan says is 54 percent of the total sales. That's 79,380 cars and results in an average - and it's only a rough average, but what're you gonna do? - of 12,597 miles per car. Let's keep that number in mind for a minute.

Today, despite going on sale a year and a half after the Leaf (June 2012 versus late 2010), Tesla Motors Tweeted today that Model S drivers have hit the same numerical milestone. Tesla didn't say how many of its vehicles were involved in its count, but we think that Tesla has sold at least 50,000 Model S electric vehicles globally (about 2,650 in 2012, 22,450 in 2013, 21,821 for 2014 through the end of September), so we'll estimate a rough average for each Model S of 20,000 miles. So, in case anyone ever needs numeric proof that a Model S is more fun to drive than a Leaf - that's the only possible thing this could mean, right? *ahem, longer range* - now you've got the data.

Continue reading Tesla Model S drivers put way more miles on their cars than Nissan Leaf owners do (we think)

Tesla Model S drivers put way more miles on their cars than Nissan Leaf owners do (we think) originally appeared on Autoblog Green on Thu, 18 Dec 2014 18:54:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Swedish car mag says Ford Mondeo is dangerously, illegally overweight [w/video]

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Ford Mondeo Estate test

Sweden's Teknikens Värld has a reputation for being very persnickety when it comes to auto safety testing, and its latest catch is the Mondeo Titanium Estate 2.0 TDCi 150 bhp S6 MPS (basically a station wagon variant of the Fusion). In addition to the model's mile-long name, it has another problem according to the Swedes, because its weight on the scales does not equal the official numbers for the vehicle.

Teknikens Värld claims the wagon is dangerously overweight because it weighs in 4,145 pounds, while Ford officially lists its weight at 3,530 pounds. That 615-pound disparity means that if a family loads it to what they think is the model's gross vehicle weight, it will actually be too heavy, and therefore illegal to drive in Sweden. According to the magazine, when it tried doing this, the rear wheels scraped against the wells, and the estate failed the mag's legendary moose test. However, at 220 pounds over the limit, it passed the test.

When reached for comment by Autoblog, Jay Ward, Senior Manager at Ford of Europe Product Communications, explained the reason for the deviation between the official numbers and the magazine's test:

"We are aware of this, but this is not an issue that relates specifically to the safety of the Mondeo, but is in fact related to the way in which the cars are tested by the authorities. We provided an Ambiente model for the testing but the car that featured in the magazine test was a Titanium model which has a different weight. We are in discussion with the Swedish Transport Agency to change the framework so the real weight of the Titanium model is reported instead of the Ambiente model which will resolve the issue."

Teknikens Värld is well-known for calling out automakers for perceived transgressions. Most recently it leveled criticisms against the all-wheel drive system in the Honda CR-V, and both the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Porsche Macan failed its moose test. Scroll down for the magazine's video of weighing the Mondeo Estate and the model's test results.

Continue reading Swedish car mag says Ford Mondeo is dangerously, illegally overweight [w/video]

Swedish car mag says Ford Mondeo is dangerously, illegally overweight [w/video] originally appeared on Autoblog Archive on Thu, 18 Dec 2014 16:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Swedish car mag says Ford Mondeo is dangerously, illegally overweight [w/video]

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Ford Mondeo Estate test

Sweden's Teknikens Värld has a reputation for being very persnickety when it comes to auto safety testing, and its latest catch is the Mondeo Titanium Estate 2.0 TDCi 150 bhp S6 MPS (basically a station wagon variant of the Fusion). In addition to the model's mile-long name, it has another problem according to the Swedes, because its weight on the scales does not equal the official numbers for the vehicle.

Teknikens Värld claims the wagon is dangerously overweight because it weighs in 4,145 pounds, while Ford officially lists its weight at 3,530 pounds. That 615-pound disparity means that if a family loads it to what they think is the model's gross vehicle weight, it will actually be too heavy, and therefore illegal to drive in Sweden. According to the magazine, when it tried doing this, the rear wheels scraped against the wells, and the estate failed the mag's legendary moose test. However, at 220 pounds over the limit, it passed the test.

When reached for comment by Autoblog, Jay Ward, Senior Manager at Ford of Europe Product Communications, explained the reason for the deviation between the official numbers and the magazine's test:

"We are aware of this, but this is not an issue that relates specifically to the safety of the Mondeo, but is in fact related to the way in which the cars are tested by the authorities. We provided an Ambiente model for the testing but the car that featured in the magazine test was a Titanium model which has a different weight. We are in discussion with the Swedish Transport Agency to change the framework so the real weight of the Titanium model is reported instead of the Ambiente model which will resolve the issue."

Teknikens Värld is well-known for calling out automakers for perceived transgressions. Most recently it leveled criticisms against the all-wheel drive system in the Honda CR-V, and both the Jeep Grand Cherokee and Porsche Macan failed its moose test. Scroll down for the magazine's video of weighing the Mondeo Estate and the model's test results.

Continue reading Swedish car mag says Ford Mondeo is dangerously, illegally overweight [w/video]

Swedish car mag says Ford Mondeo is dangerously, illegally overweight [w/video] originally appeared on Autoblog on Thu, 18 Dec 2014 16:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Analyst slashes Tesla sales forecast by 40% due to fuel prices

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Tesla

While falling gas prices are cause for celebration among Americans, many of whom are seeing their budget for Christmas presents burgeon on account of the cheap fuel, it's decidedly bad news for Tesla Motors.

The electric car manufacturer's fortunes are being seriously impacted by the low cost of petrol, with one of the firm's biggest fans on Wall Street, Morgan Stanley's Adam Jonas, now slashing his expectations for the Palo Alto, CA-based company. Jonas has a long record of being bullish on the brand, but that hasn't stopped him from lowering his forecast for the company by a whopping 40 percent. In other words, Jonas thinks Tesla will only be able to sell 300,000 vehicles by the end of the decade rather than the half a million that was originally forecast.

"While nobody buying a Model S today is doing so to save on their monthly expenses, the longer-term story is far more dependent on the volume success of the Model 3," Jonas wrote, according to CNN Money. "Oil price is a factor for Model 3."

Gas prices might not be the only factor that could hurt the Model 3, though. Jonas seems to think that Tesla won't be able to sell its more affordable model for anything less than $60,000, which is a far cry from the $35,000 price that the company has targeted.

Jonas doesn't elaborate on why Tesla might miss its target so drastically, but it does help to explain his bearish attitude - if gas prices remain low, there's not really any incentive for customers to join the Tesla family. That's doubly true when the cost of joining said family is twice as much as expected.

Analyst slashes Tesla sales forecast by 40% due to fuel prices originally appeared on Autoblog Archive on Thu, 18 Dec 2014 14:00:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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