Mercedes, the traditional automaker, offers choice to its customers while the upstart Tesla bets on one power source–electricity. The early returns for the year show the newcomer charging ahead, but this is a long race and one being fought on a worldwide stage.
Compared to last year, hybrid sales for the first four months are up 12.3%, almost double the overall market’s gain. Plug-ins are on a tear with 130% growth, but on relatively small numbers. Diesels have taken a dip so far this year, dropping 6.2%, but are expected to rebound when high-volume cars like the Chevy Cruze Clean Turbo Diesel, Mazda6 SkyActiv-D, Jeep Grand Cherokee and Ram 1500 hit showrooms later this year. Both the hybrid and plug-in electric segments are also adding models as well.
For all the twists and turns that the auto industry undergoes, it looks like 2013 will be a clear milestone for electric cars. The point here is to look at how far we have come and note the arrival of the electric car industry. It’s no longer a model or two, but a substantial variety of vehicles from major manufacturers that the EV-conscious consumer can choose from.
You need look no further than the 2013 New York International Auto Show media preview this last week to see that automakers are aggressively laying out multiple paths to get to the fuel economy goals of the U.S., Europe and Japan. Electric vehicles, plug-in hybrids, hybrids, diesels and advanced gasoline engines (as well as other technologies) point to a diverse future.
While many recent headlines paint a grim picture of electric vehicle sales and the market future for those vehicles, in reality consumer acceptance of the new vehicles has been stronger than hybrids and can be expected to grow in the future.
A pair of environmentalists dismiss some of the common misconceptions that prevent the eco-conscious from buying electric cars.
Vehicle congestion in the 10 large cities in the U.S. is costing drivers and the economy money and increasing greenhouse gas emissions. It doesn’t look much better in medium size cities and predictions are it won’t get any better as the economy improves. In Top 10 most congested cities it is likely that plug-in vehicles will get special privileges and access to reduce CO2 while other vehicles are charged.
The best way to get more MPG out of cars is to tax fuel, according to researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. They published a study in the journal Energy Economics (Volume 36, March 2013, Pages 322–333) that showed that fuel economy standards (such as the ones now in force in the U.S. ) cost at least six times as much (and up to 14 times as much) to reduce gasoline use as would a tax on the fuel. They added that a fuel economy standard is an expensive mechanism to reduce greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) and raises the cost of a cap-and-trade policy, such as the one just starting in California.
High mileage hybrids, plug-ins and diesels like the Toyota Prius, Chevy Volt and Passat TDI, had a good month to begin the year, bettering the high bar set by the overall market. Hybrids pushed past 3 percent of the total market.
Honda is an engineering-led company, which is why it takes pride in accomplishments that might leave other companies scratching their heads at the effort expended. Take for example, its new 2014 Plug-in Hybrid Accord, which Clean Fleet Report recently tested. It became the first vehicle certified to California’s new emissions level–SULEV20. Why should you care? [...]
For a typical American car being driven 15,000 miles annually, 8 tons of CO2 emissions result. The number is higher if emissions from making the car are added. Some of Ford’s most exciting new electric and hybrid cars will be a fraction of typical emissions including the Ford Focus Electric, the Ford Transit Connect Electric, the Ford C-MAX Energi, the Ford C-MAX Hybrid, the Ford Fusion Energi and the Ford Fusion Hybrid. Ford is also the Ford only Automaker to receive Climate Leadership Award.
President Obama announced a historic agreement with thirteen major automakers to increasing fuel economy to 54.5 miles per gallon for cars and light-duty trucks by Model Year 2025. This will save U.S. drivers $1.7 trillion in fuel costs with today’s oil prices of about $100 per barrel. If the price of oil is higher in 2025, consumers will save more. Forecasts of 10 million electric cars by 2020 in the U.S. look more likely. High volumes will lower the cost of lithium battery packs and electric motors, which are also used in hybrids. By 2013, at least one of these automakers will sell 100,000 electric cars and hybrids in one year – Toyota, GM, Nissan, and Ford.
We want to believe in magic but unfortunately, there is no one magical solution. Save Gas, Save the Planet captures over 120 different ways that people are making a difference by riding clean, riding together, and riding less. As you read Save Gas, Save the Planet, you will discover a number of ways to burn less fuel without needing a new car. When, and if, you are ready for a new car, you will make a better choice.
This excerpt from the book Save Gas, Save the Planet highlights the future of Transportation 2.0. During the next 20 years we will witness a major shift from vehicles that are mostly mechanical to vehicles that are primarily electronic. People share tips and stories about how they save by riding smart, riding less, riding together, and riding clean.
Ford’s all-new 2011 Fiesta with up to 40 mpg highway and 29 mpg city, delivers better fuel economy than most hybrids. The Ford Fiesta 40 mpg, achieved with Ford’s new six-speed PowerShift automatic transmission, is 5 mpg better than the Honda Fit and 4 mpg better than the Toyota Yaris. The Fiesta has been a hot seller in Europe and is likely to receive equal enthusiasm in the U.S.