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Archive for the ‘Hybrid Cars’ Category

Cars Coming Soon: Diesel-Powered Chrysler 200 and 300?

April 4th, 2013

2013 Chrysler 300

I’ve been a card-carrying member of the diesel fan club for many years. The benefits of longevity and fuel economy speak for themselves, but the advancement of gasoline engines has significantly narrowed the gap in recent years.

The average cost of diesel fuel remains well above that of regular unleaded, and diesel cars typically cost much more than the same model powered by a gasoline engine. So have oil burners lost their edge? Chrysler doesn’t think so, as its turbodiesel V6 could start showing up in more models.

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Lexus Gets Its Sexy On with the LF-LC

April 1st, 2013

Lexus LF-LC concept

Lexus desperately wants out of the stodgy luxury perception that has started to surround its image.

Things started to change with the hugely expensive and ultra-fast LFA supercar, then came some new design elements and sportier performance characteristics. Now, with production of the LFA ended, a new Lexus king is poised to sit atop the throne. It won’t be as expensive, or as fast, but that just means it’ll be more accessible and more will be made.

That, my friends, will be a very good thing.

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Range Anxiety? BMW Has i3 Buyers Covered

March 13th, 2013

BMW i3

Buying a car that can go only about 50 miles from home is a scary thing. In typical day-to-day driving, the range of an electric car is more than adequate, but there is still the fear of running out of juice somewhere far from home.

Mobile charging trucks, public charging stations and other ideas can help ease some of that worry, but buyers of the coming BMW i3 will have another option:

Free access to a traditional gas-powered loaner vehicle.

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Grading Model Names from the 2013 Geneva Motor Show

March 8th, 2013

Another year, another Geneva Motor Show. Sure, we Americans get to kick back and watch the unveiling of generational updates to familiar friends such as the Volkswagen GTI, but the Geneva Motor Show really serves two main purposes. The first: to show us what awesome European cars will remain off-limits to American car fans. The second: to provide us with endless laughs at the peculiar names car manufacturers give to their newest rides. What’s in a name? Let’s find out.

Lamborghini Veneno

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Cars Coming Soon: Pro_cee’d to LaFerrari

March 7th, 2013

Ferrari LaFerrari

It started out being referred to as the next Enzo. Then the next Ferrari supercar took the moniker F150, which drew obvious questions about originality in the company’s naming choices.

Well, prepare yourself for a new level of Ferrari naming weirdness: the Ferrari LaFerrari.

Like all names, I’m sure soon enough we won’t be able to imagine the hypercar having any other name. For now, though, it just doesn’t seem sinister enough to suit the fastest, most advanced Ferrari ever built.

Then again, as car names gravitate toward the alpha-numeric, it’s kind of nice to see actual words used. Or, in Kia’s case, made-up words, but still words nonetheless.

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Zero to 60 in Under Three Seconds: Two Ways to Get There

February 28th, 2013
McLaren P1

McLaren P1

One of the cars I’m going to mention here is real and could theoretically be purchased and stored in your garage, assuming you had enough cash and knew the right people.

The other car doesn’t even exist. All we have is the promise that it will, along with some seriously unbelievable claims and performance numbers.

These are supercars that reside at opposite ends of real and imagined, yet share the common goal of becoming one of the fastest automobiles in the world.

First, let’s start with the real car: the McLaren P1.

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Will the 270-MPG Car Become Reality?

February 22nd, 2013

Volkswagen XL1

Remember back in 2008, when General Motors said the coming Chevy Volt would be certified as a 100-mpg vehicle? It was big news back in the day. Now, though, we can all look back and laugh at the ridiculousness of such a claim. The EPA says the Volt gets a combined 37-mpg rating, though on all-electric power it’s rated at 94-mpge (miles per gallon equivalent).

So when an automaker makes grandiose claims that a new car can get unheard of gas mileage numbers, you’ll forgive the skepticism.

Volkswagen, though, has been working on such a vehicle for more than a decade. If the latest news is true, expect a 270-mpg V-Dub to debut very soon.

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Can the Chevrolet Volt Bring EVs into the Mainstream?

January 28th, 2013
2011 Chevrolet Volt

Chevrolet Volt

Sometimes the universe chooses crazy ways to tell us things.

Whether in life, love, or work, sometimes things happen that are just too much to write off as coincidence and can only be described as the work of fate.

In addition to pulling the strings of how and when people meet or opening the door to new potential career paths, it seems the universe has taken an interest in the furtherance of electric cars.

Allow me to explain.

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Cars Coming Soon: The $845,000 Porsche 918 Spyder

January 24th, 2013

Along with prices for the new Cayman, Panamera and Cayenne, none of which start over $100,000, Porsche has finally released pricing of its new supercar, the 918 Spyder.

As given away in the headline, the 795-hp hybrid hypercar will carry a price in the U.S. of $845,000. But that’s not even the whole story.

In proper Porsche fashion, the options list carries ridiculously priced packages that cost more than an optioned-out Cayman. I mean, really, what’s a Porsche supercar without an $84,000 options package?

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Should Electric Vehicles Make Noise at Low Speeds?

January 9th, 2013

2012 Nissan Leaf

Imagine walking toward the entrance of your local grocery store when, as you pass the row of parked cars, you hear the clip-clop of an approaching horse.

Surprised, you stand still and wait, not wanting to get run over by a Clydesdale.

But instead of a majestic animal, a diminutive Nissan Leaf glides by, emanating the sound of hooves on pavement.

It seems ridiculous, but something similar could soon become law.

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