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via Autoblog Green

Video: Japan's Prime Minister likes Toyota FCV's pickup, zero emissions

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Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe drives the Toyota fuel-cell vehicle

Japan's prime minister has a lead foot, apparently. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe recently had a photo op with Toyota's first production hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, even getting behind the wheel for a spin (no chauffeur for him, so much respect on our part). His primary impression was that the car had great pickup, before settling on the more politically correct view of noting the vehicle's lack of emissions.

In the 87-second video below, we can see the prime minister's appreciation of the car's performance as Toyota Motor Corp. Managing Officer Satoshi Ogiso dutifully rides shotgun. Abe also noted that he was "cheering" for the car's success.

And he will apparently do his part there. The Japanese government will provide incentives worth about $20,000 per vehicle, bringing down its out-of-pocket price to less than $50,000 from about $69,000. Toyota in June announced pricing on the sedan, which will start sales next spring. The car can go 435 miles on a full tank from a hydrogen refueling station, wherever those can be found.

Recent reports claim Toyota will name the model Mirai, which means "future" in Japanese, though the company hasn't made any official announcement. In the present, at least, it is making Japan's leader happy.

Continue reading Japan's Prime Minister likes Toyota FCV's pickup, zero emissions

Japan's Prime Minister likes Toyota FCV's pickup, zero emissions originally appeared on Autoblog Green on Fri, 01 Aug 2014 19:46:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Report: Here's why our Lexus NX is uglier than the rest of the world's

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2015 Lexus NX 300h

Take a good look at the image above. That's the US-market Lexus NX 300h, and it looks, well... distinctive. Although the entire NX crossover sports styling that could certainly be described as controversial, it's the front end of the 'ute that seems to draw most of the ire, befitted as it is with Lexus' so-called spindle grill.

Now, take a look at the pair of images just below. The one on the left is from the States (the same model seen above), while the one on the right comes from Europe. Notice a difference? The lower front fascia of the European Lexus NX dips down much lower than the one from the US, and it looks much more refined because of it.

2015 Lexus NX 200t from the US2015 Lexus NX 200t from Europe

Why the disparity between the two designs? According to Top Gear Philippines, the reason why the US gets the more pointy proboscis is because of its classification as a light truck. It seems trucks are required to have some sort of concession to the car's approach angle - in other words, a truck should be able to clear an obstacle that a car might hit. Why does Lexus care if the NX is a car or truck? Well, that has to do with how fuel economy is reported, as trucks are given less-stringent requirements for Corporate Average Fuel Economy purposes.

We wish this weren't the case - the Lexus NX looks much better with its lower fascia in place. As it stands, though, you can still opt for the F Sport package on either the turbocharged NX 200t or hybrid NX 300h, which replaces the front end of the NX with a much more menacing, if not necessarily more attractive, fascia, along with other more overtly sporty finishing touches. Take a look at the 2015 Lexus NX 200t F Sport in our image gallery below, and tell us which version of the CUV you prefer.

Here's why our Lexus NX is uglier than the rest of the world's originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 01 Aug 2014 17:30:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Exclusive: Plug In 2014: VIA makes the case for 'free' plug-in hybrid work vans, trucks

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Plug In 2014: VIA PHEV Passenger Van

If you're a fleet manager who's been waiting anxiously for the chance to buy a plug-in hybrid van from Via Motors, your wait is almost over. If you work for the right fleet, anyway.

David West, the chief marketing efficer for VIA Motors, took AutoblogGreen for a ride around the San Jose Convention Center in a Via van sporting an Electric Blue paint job as part of the Plug In 2014 Conference this week and gave us an update on how things are coming along. The big news is that the Via PHEV van production is going to start by the end of September. Via can currently build two vans an hour at its production plant in Mexico, or about 16 a day and could easily double that. "That would get us to 20,000 a year with two full lines running," West said. "We have the capacity."

"There is no way gas can compete with electric." - David West, Via Motors

But they can't sell that many quite yet. By the end of December, around 350 Vans will be made, mostly for a $20-million program from the Department of Energy (DOE) and the South Coast Air Quality Management District that will see the vehicles used by fleets that will report energy data to the Idaho National Lab. Via is also finishing up CARB certification for both the van and the company's plug-in hybrid pick-up truck. About 50 percent of Via's technology in the truck will not need to be tested again, since it's the same as what's in the van, but things like crash tests will need to be done twice.

Despite the progress, this is not where Via hoped it would be today. The bankruptcy of battery supplier A123, "took about a year off our timeline," West said. "It's been getting a little slow getting it to market, there have been some challenges, particuarly since we had the country's worst recession right in the middle of this wrap up, but it's inevitable in my mind. There is no way gas can compete with electric."

Maybe that's why FedEx has expressed an interest in buying around 5,000 units, West said. FedEx already has some pilot vehicles, just like Verizon does, and PG&E wants to replace all of their gas trucks with electric vehicles, which would be another 3,000 sales, he said. Besides the fuel savings, vehicles like these, with easy on-site power generation, could also work wonders in post-disaster situations, he said, since they could replace the need for generators.

Continue reading Plug In 2014: VIA makes the case for 'free' plug-in hybrid work vans, trucks

Plug In 2014: VIA makes the case for 'free' plug-in hybrid work vans, trucks originally appeared on Autoblog Green on Fri, 01 Aug 2014 15:14:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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via Transport Evolved

Transport Evolved News Panel Show 209: Breaking Ground

On today’s Transport Evolved: Tesla does well, Nissan does less well, and Elon Musk gets a cameo on the Simpsons. These stories and more, on today’s Transport Evolved, with Nikki Gordon-Bloomfield and guest Bob Tregilus, LIVE at 6pm BST (1pm EDT) http://youtu.be/FsVajMYYe9A Welcome to the show! Today, Nikki is joined by EV advocate and podcaster Bob Tregilus. Bob Tregilus […]

The post Transport Evolved News Panel Show 209: Breaking Ground appeared first on Transport Evolved Electric Car News.

Toyota Exec Claims BMW Will Give the BMW i3 a Hydrogen Fuel Cell

BMW’s first mass-produced electric car, the all-electric BMW i3, is proving extremely popular among EV fans and plug-in converts. Thanks to its cavernous interior, unique styling and sporty 7.2 second 0-60 mph time, the BMW i3 mixes BMW’s well-known no-compromise attitude towards premium car design with enough quirkiness to make it stand out from the […]

The post Toyota Exec Claims BMW Will Give the BMW i3 a Hydrogen Fuel Cell appeared first on Transport Evolved Electric Car News.

T.E.N. EV and Future Car News 1 August, 2014: Tesla Gigafactory Confirmation, Crash Tests, and Robotic Cars

Welcome to T.E.N! Short for Transport Evolved News, T.E.N. is recorded every Friday to help your weekend get off to a flying start by making sure you haven’t missed the big green and future car news stories of the week. http://youtu.be/S97xXBFo774 Weekly show about plug-in and electric vehicles. This week news about: Tesla’s confirmed Reno, NV Gigafactory […]

The post T.E.N. EV and Future Car News 1 August, 2014: Tesla Gigafactory Confirmation, Crash Tests, and Robotic Cars appeared first on Transport Evolved Electric Car News.

via Google News

Volvo and Renault lead way as electric car sales double in EU - The Guardian

The Guardian

Volvo and Renault lead way as electric car sales double in EU
The Guardian
Electric cars are growing strongly, but at the same time the simple truth is that they are too expensive for most people to consider,” said T&E's Greg Archer. “But the price will come down over time and you will see this technology start to compete ...
Electric Cars By Renault, Volvo And Mitsubishi Helped Double Sales of Plug-In ...International Business Times

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Could electric cars become a familiar sight in the UK? Tesla plans huge expansion - Management Today

Energy Live News

Could electric cars become a familiar sight in the UK? Tesla plans huge expansion
Management Today
'The UK consumer is inclined to make a decision just on the car itself – not on a nationalistic basis. The Germans and French tend to be like that.' However, Musk added that electric cars have been slow in general to catch on, mainly because other ...
Panasonic and Tesla plan electric car battery factoryEnergy Live News
Tesla (TSLA) 'Gigafactory' May Expand Electric Car MarketABC News (blog)
Tesla plans to produce over 35000 electric vehicles this year, 100K by 2015VentureBeat
Investorplace.com -MIT Technology Review
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How Tesla's battery 'Gigafactory' could change everything -- not just electric ... - VentureBeat

VentureBeat

How Tesla's battery 'Gigafactory' could change everything -- not just electric ...
VentureBeat
By eschewing the creation of their own proprietary battery technology and making use of existing infrastructure, Tesla was able to cut significant costs from the most expensive part of any high-performance electric vehicle: the battery.The planned ...
Tesla: 100000 electric cars will ship in next 18 monthsTech Times
Electric car maker seeks US battery siteNEWS.com.au

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