Here's a sampling of recent green-tech news:Sony Unveils Ultrasmall Hybrid Fuel Cell -- Tech-On Sony looks to put fuel cells in gadgets, following a prototype that Sharp demonstrated last week that uses methanol as a fuel. Canon patents fuel cell-powered cameras -- Crave -- CNET AsiaFuel cells are coming to consumer electronics, it seems. Quite a bit of activity on this front in the past week. Oil Left in the Ground -- Technology ReviewWe have smart grids--why not have "smart oil fields?" Interest in existing oil fields, where as much as 75 percent of … Read more
The batteries may not be ready yet, but Chevrolet is planning to show a production specification version of its electric-powered Volt at this year's Paris auto show. According to a report from the U.K.'s Channel 4 News, the Volt will be shown at the October show with an electric power train and auxiliary gasoline engine in similar configuration to that of the original concept, which debuted at Detroit last year. However, an official teaser shot of the production Volt released by GM suggests that the Paris-bound production version of the four-seater may lose some of the dashing … Read more
General Motors has shed some light on the reality of its race against the clock to develop and test lithium-ion batteries for its Chevrolet Volt plug-in car, which is scheduled for production in 2010. The automaker announced yesterday that it had created a new computer algorithm to test the batteries, which will be required to propel the four-seater Volt up to 40 miles under electric power alone. According to the project's engineers, the T-shaped prototype battery for the Volt is around six feet long, weighs a hefty 375 pounds, and will be built into the structure of the car, … Read more
The 2008 Chevrolet Malibu Hybrid gave us a strong sense of d?j? vu. We read the accolades accorded to the gas-only version, the 2008 Chevrolet Malibu, after its launch late last year, which reminded us of the good press received by the Saturn Aura the year before. And the Malibu Hybrid, with its belt alternator starter (BAS) hybrid system, reminded us of the mild hybrid system of the Saturn Aura Green Line. It seems that GM pioneered a good car launch story with the Aura, and chose to repeat it with the Malibu this year. We've started taking … Read more
Whether it's an acknowledgement of mortality or a desire to relive a misspent youth, many of us have acquired a greater appreciation of classic cars, or at least parts of them. And a few are even lucky enough to celebrate their midlife crises by purchasing one. But that's where a problem often arises: What do you do about those ancient radios?
On one hand, it seems disrespectful to replace the original equipment with a new stereo that looks completely inappropriate; on the other, an AM radio just doesn't do justice to a long drive in the countryside. … Read more
Chevrolet launched a new crossover vehicle at the 2008 Chicago Auto Show, but from its specifications, it sounds more like an SUV. The Traverse has three rows of seating, plus cargo space, although the automaker insists that it drives like a much smaller car. We like that it uses a six-speed automatic. It also has some interesting tech options, such as Bluetooth, that shows GM isn't as bound to OnStar as it has been in the past.
The Chevrolet Volt has some high standards to live up to: In conversations with Wired News at this week's North American International Auto Show (aka the Detroit auto show), General Motors Vice Chairman Bob Lutz said that a successful launch of Chevy's plug-in hybrid could have "the same sort of symbolism" for GM and the U.S. auto industry as the Apollo missions and the moon landings did for NASA and American scientific endeavors. (He also talks price, batteries, and looks.)
The Los Angeles Auto Show wraps up this weekend. I drove down to the Los Angeles Convention Center last week to check out the new BMW M3--which I hope to buy next year--and get a look at all the other new cars debuting there.
There were two clear trends at the show: higher performance and increased environmental sensitivity. The best new vehicles show improvements in both areas.
When GM showed off its Beat, Groove, and Trax micro-concepts in New York earlier this year, it said that it would produce the model that proved to be the most popular with the public. Today at the 2007 Los Angeles Auto Show, we have a winner, as Chevrolet announced that it would produce the three-door Beat, which the automaker said had been the overwhelming favorite among online voters.
According to Chevy, the Beat will be aimed at "tech-savvy, young-at-heart" drivers, as evidenced by its pop-up navigation system. Unfortunately for those who like the look of the brawny hatchback, … Read more
While it still won't get you the 45 mpg of a Toyota Prius, the new version of the Chevrolet Silverado hybrid may make you feel less guilty about driving a large pickup.
General Motors unveiled the 2009 Chevy Silverado hybrid at the 2007 LA Auto Show on Wednesday.
The full-size pickup looks identical to the regular Silverado, but features guts that lessen its carbon footprint.