CNG-PHEV Technology Coming

We’ve seen PHEV, diesel-hybrid and natural gas powered vehicles. How about combining compressed natural gas and EV technologies?

Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. (EDI) just did so, announcing a partnership to develop a class-4 vehicle that combines the benefits of compressed natural gas (CNG) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) technology.

Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. (EDI) describes itself as a global leader in advanced, high-efficiency PHEV and continuously variable transmission (CVT) solutions.

In partnership with Greenkraft, CALSTART, and the California Energy Commission, EDI said the collaboration supports the rapid movement in California toward a zero emissions environment. The effort is said to combine EDI’s intelligent PHEV powertrain with Greenkraft’s CNG-powered 14,500-pound, class-4 medium-duty truck.

EDI added its solution can improve the fuel economy of a conventional CNG-powered medium-duty truck by more than 40 percent.

“EDI’s CNG-PHEV is a first-of-its-kind innovation, and represents an entirely new market application for EDI’s proprietary technology,” said Joerg Ferchau, co-founder and CEO of EDI. “The CNG-PHEV delivers a market-disruptive vehicle that will help fleets switch from petroleum-based liquid fuels—gasoline and diesel—to domestically available, cleaner-burning natural gas and electricity. Technology possesses tremendous potential for commercial viability and can play an essential role in helping California meet its long-term carbon reduction and short-term zero-emissions goals.”

In certain duty cycles with shorter daily mileage requirements or where periodic plug-in recharging is possible throughout the day, it may even be possible to completely eliminate the use of CNG, explained EDI, achieving 100-percent all-electric zero-emissions vehicle (ZEV) operations, and achieve an effective MPGe of 26.9—an improvement of 300 percent over the baseline CNG truck.

EDI added its announcement came simultaneously with a grant approval for the combined partnership by the California Energy Commission of funding from its Energy Research and Development Division. The approved $900,000 grant, supports the state directive to accelerate research and development of advanced natural gas engine-hybrid electric vehicles for light- and heavy-duty applications.

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CNG-PHEV Technology Coming

We’ve seen PHEV, diesel-hybrid and natural gas powered vehicles. How about combining compressed natural gas and EV technologies?

Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. (EDI) just did so, announcing a partnership to develop a class-4 vehicle that combines the benefits of compressed natural gas (CNG) and PHEV technology.

Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. (EDI) describes itself as a global leader in advanced, high-efficiency plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) and continuously variable transmission (CVT) solutions.

In partnership with Greenkraft, CALSTART, and the California Energy Commission, EDI said the collaboration supports the rapid movement in California toward a zero emissions environment. The effort is said to combine EDI’s intelligent PHEV powertrain with Greenkraft’s CNG-powered 14,500-pound, class-4 medium-duty truck.

EDI added its solution can improve the fuel economy of a conventional CNG-powered medium-duty truck by more than 40 percent.

“EDI’s CNG-PHEV is a first-of-its-kind innovation, and represents an entirely new market application for EDI’s proprietary technology,” said Joerg Ferchau, co-founder and CEO of EDI. “The CNG-PHEV delivers a market-disruptive vehicle that will help fleets switch from petroleum-based liquid fuels—gasoline and diesel—to domestically available, cleaner-burning natural gas and electricity. Technology possesses tremendous potential for commercial viability and can play an essential role in helping California meet its long-term carbon reduction and short-term zero-emissions goals.”

In certain duty cycles with shorter daily mileage requirements or where periodic plug-in recharging is possible throughout the day, it may even be possible to completely eliminate the use of CNG, explained EDI, achieving 100-percent all-electric zero-emissions vehicle (ZEV) operations, and achieve an effective MPGe of 26.9—an improvement of 300 percent over the baseline CNG truck.

EDI added its announcement came simultaneously with a grant approval for the combined partnership by the California Energy Commission of funding from its Energy Research and Development Division. The approved $900,000 grant, supports the state directive to accelerate research and development of advanced natural gas engine-hybrid electric vehicles for light- and heavy-duty applications.

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Renault Teams Up With e-dams In Formula E

Renault is raising its profile in the FIA Formula E Championship.

With the championship’s inaugural race in Beijing in September, the French carmaker announced that it will step up its involvement in the new series in the form of backing for the e.dams team.

Renault said it will be the title sponsor of the team which is co-owned by Jean-Paul Driot and four-time Formula 1 world champion Alain Prost, who is also an ambassador for the Renault brand.

This involvement with the French team will allow Renault to maximize the coverage of its participation in the new championship which promises to be particularly attractive, said the carmaker.

The brand’s name will appear on the cars, as well as on the drivers’ race suits and helmets. Renault added a pro-active communication program is also planned for the championship’s inaugural season.

“Jean-Paul Driot and I are delighted to be associated with Renault in this new adventure,” said Alain Prost. “The choice of Renault as a major partner was a perfectly natural step because of the exceptional record it has carved out in motorsport, as well as its unique expertise in the field of electric vehicles. Personally, I am thrilled by the idea of working with Renault on such an ambitious project again and by the prospect of writing a new chapter of our association. I am confident that our venture will be successful. We are actively preparing for the first races of the season. This week’s test at Donington is the next step in that process and it will be followed by a busy summer in order to be ready and competitive for the first grand prix in Beijing, on September 13.”

The e.dams-Renault team has announced that its drivers will be Nicolas Prost and Sébastien Buemi, two well-known names from the worlds of Formula 1 and endurance racing.

2014 – 2015 FIA Formula E Championship Calendar

  • 13/09/2014:       Beijing
  • 18/10/2014:       Putrajaya
  • 13/12/2014:       Punta del Este
  • 10/01/2015:       Buenos Aires
  • 14/02/2015:       Venue to be confirmed
  • 14/03/2015:       Miami
  • 04/04/2015:       Los Angeles
  • 09/05/2015:       Monaco
  • 30/05/2015:       Berlin
  • 27/06/2015:       London

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2015 Hyundai Sonata Review – Video

2015 Hyundai Sonata Review - Video 2015 Hyundai Sonata Review - Video

The 2015 Hyundai Sonata has big shoes to fill as the last generation model practically revolutionized the mid-sized sedan segment. With eye-catching styling, Hyundai proved that mainstream cars can be attractive.

Fast-forward to today and it's clear that Hyundai's impact is felt throughout the industry. Almost every manufacturer enhanced its mid-sized sedan styling. While competitors were focused on styling, Hyundai set out to refine the Sonata by blending premium appeal with mid-size sedan practicality.

With a look that follows in the footsteps of the new (and well received) Genesis Sedan, the Sonata adds some key exterior highlights. A trunk-lid spoiler and LED daytime running lights are now standard while trim level are more separated and better defined. Limited models feature liberally applied chrome accents, while Sport models have a blacked-out portion on the front bumper, under the grille. Both outfits suit the Sonata though it’s clear the company isn’t looking to stun the world with exterior design.

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Roaring Up the Hill Again at the Festival of Speed

Access to this amazing machinery is not restricted, however, as the open-paddock format allows visitors to get close, providing a rare glimpse and the chance to hear the wonderful, old (and more modern) racers. Often without any kind of noise restrictions and with the teams' goal fixed on absolute power, you can feel the sound energy hit you in the chest as the burbling V8s and raspy V12s fire up.

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Chinese Tesla Model S Owner Smashes Windshield to Protest Brand’s “Arrogance”


We have become accustomed to seeing disgruntled owners destroy their cars in recent years to protest poor quality or bad service, but this latest incident from China is a little different. Minutes after taking delivery of a white Tesla Model S in Beijing, Yu Xinquan smashed the windshield of the 1 million yuan (about $173,600) car with a wrench. Read more »
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