electric cars

electric cars

Tesla has officially announced its next product: the Model III. Scheduled to debut in 2017 after the upcoming Model X SUV, the midsize Model III sedan has its sights set squarely on the BMW 3 Series . Tesla’s new car will slot under the popular Model S in both size and price.

Keeping with its unconventional business methods, Tesla announced the product in an interview with AutoExpress. CEO Elon Musk says the new car will cost $35,000 and have a range of 200 miles on a single charge. The candid interview continued with Musk mentioning he wanted the new car called the Model E, but ran into red tape with Ford , which apparently holds rights to the name.

To combat the nomenclature woes, Tesla will badge the new car with the Roman numeral “III.” We have to give pause to Tesla’s naming scheme, particularly because of the combination of the Model S, the Model E (err Model III), and the Model X. It seems the world can see Elon Musk’s rather interesting sense of humor.

While the Models S, III, and X are the main focus of Tesla’s future, the company is giving early adopters a substantial power boost. Musk continued in the interview saying Tesla will offer the original Tesla Roadster a replacement battery that extends its range to 400 miles while boosting power. Musk says, “which will allow you to drive from LA to San Francisco non-stop.”

Updated 07/23/2014: We prepared a rendering for the future Tesla Model III. Check it out after the jump.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2017 Tesla Model III.

Source: AutoExpress

Hackers are some of the most competitive people in the world. I personally know this because I have some friends who treat this kind of thing as if their lives depended on it. So when hackers are invited to do something like hack a car and get paid for doing it, naturally, those competitive instincts kick in.

On July 16, 2014 hackers will get that chance at the SyScan conference in Beijing. The objective is simple: hack a car and win $10,000. Sounds simple enough, right?

Only it isn’t, because the car-to-be-hacked is none other than the Tesla Model S . Forbes is reporting that the company is opening the competition to anyone who registers for the conference. A Model S will be in attendance. So will a bunch of computers that we assume will be used for the competition. Whoever gets to turn the Model S into his or her puppet through hacking wins the prize.

This is the kind of challenge that hackers live for. Give them onions and they’re likely to do something with them. The same applies with a Model S, a computer, and the incentive to take home a whole lot of Benjamins.

Apparently, Tesla isn’t involved in the competition and its unlikely that it’ll give its blessing on the contest. But that doesn’t mean it’s going to be bad publicity for the electric car manufacturer. After all, the company’s security reputation is top notch and hacking a Model S isn’t as simple as hacking, say, a PlayStation 4 .

So if a hacker somehow finds a way to make the car’s in-dash browser remotely visit TMZ or worse, control its steering from a computer, Tesla would likely want to find out how the hacker did it.

The rules and details behind the contest are still unknown, but we’ll update you once we learn them.

Click past the jump to read more about Tesla Model S.

Source: Forbes

Nissan seems to be taking a play right from Tesla’s electric car playbook, as the automaker introduces its “No Charge to Charge” program. As the program’s name suggests, it allows new Nissan LEAF owners to charge their all-electric cars at any one of Nissan’s growing network of charging stations. Already live in 10 markets across the U.S., the 2,600 public charging stations and 200 quick charging stations will accept Nissan’s EZ-ChargeSM card.

Acting like a credit card, the EZ-ChargeSM card will give owners the change to fill their batteries, but without a bill at the end of the month. Nissan is planning to grow the network of quick-charging stations by an additional 500 units at Nissan dealerships, and local businesses and municipalities across the country. Those businesses and municipal partners will include those who’ve partnered with Nissan in key LEAF markets.

The EZ-ChargeSM card also opens up the nation’s leading five EV charging networks that include ChargePoint, Blink, CarCharging, AeroVironment, and NRG eVgo. The stations are accessible in the top-10 LEAF market across the country including the cities of San Francisco, Sacramento, San Diego, Seat Seat tle, Portland, Oregon., Nashville, Phoenix, Dallas-Ft. Worth, Houston and Washington, D.C. The dealer network will then extend into another 15 additional EV markets outside those cities.

LEAF owners will be able to charge their vehicles up to 80 percent in roughly 30 minutes at the quick-charging stations. Obviously the conventional charging stations will take longer to charge a depleted battery.

Click past the jump to read more about the Nissan LEAF.

We’ve told you about the Mitsubishi MiEV Evolution III the automaker took to the Pikes Peak hill climb in June 2014, but now we bring you this rather thrilling video. Strapped to driver Greg Tracy’s roll cage, the camera records his record-breaking hill climb time of just 9:08.188. That’s the fasted time ever recorded for an all-electric car and the second fastest time of the entire event.

It’s amazing to watch just how quickly the MiEV Evolution III accelerates and handles around those corners. Then again, it’s not surprising considering the vehicle’s four electric motors kick out 611 horsepower. Each of those four motors are mounted at each wheel and help power the car through corners without any wheel spin. It’s part of the Mitsubishi ’s Super All-Wheel Control all-wheel-drive system.

What’s more, the MiEV Evolution III had the advantage of not losing power as it climbed over 5,000 feet during its nine-minute run, unlike gasoline-powered vehicles. Also helping its case is a lightweight tube chassis and a wind tunnel-optimized body that helps cut through the air and provide substantial downforce at higher speeds.

Keep an eye on the speedometer as Tracy accelerates out of the hairpin corners. It’s amazing to watch the digits skip by, nearly counting by 10 as the scenery blurs by.

The Tesla Model X is reportedly about to enter production in late 2014. Finally, right? It’s been a long time coming for the company’s second large-scale production vehicle. The lengthy delays the Model X has suffered from has made us even more interested to see what the production version is going to look like. But Tesla is now accepting reservations for the Model X and has said that deliveries are expected to begin in the fall of next year. Do a little calculating and it does look like those initial reports of production beginning early next year are all true.

This is huge news, especially for those clamoring for Tesla to finally build the Model X after years of testing and development. We’re a part of that group, too, and like everybody else, we’re very interested to see whether the production Model X will mirror the concept, or go in a more conservative direction.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 Tesla Model X.

Rumors of a production version of the Infiniti Emerg-E are nothing new. As a matter of fact, those started buzzing as early as 2012, months after the hybrid supercar appeared at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show . To this day, the Emerg-E hasn’t made an appearance in showrooms yet, but that doesn’t mean it wont in the future, at least if Infiniti has its way.

Speaking with Auto Express, Nissan vice-president Andy Palmer expressed optimism that Infiniti still has space in its lineup for the Emerg-E. There’s still a lot work that needs to be done before that happens, including the design execution of the supercar . Still, there’s enough reason to believe that with more and more markets angling for efficient exotic models, the Emerg-E could very well "emerge" as a future Infiniti halo car.

Likewise, profitability is another important barometer that could determine the production future of the Emerg-E. Simply put, the model has to make sense from a business standpoint. If Infiniti loses money with every Emerg-E model sold, then it’s not a good business decision.

Being able to justify the Emerg-E as a model that will be a financial hit for Infiniti is arguably the most important hurdle the company has to overcome. If Infiniti believes it can clear that, then the Emerg-E could be headed to dealerships sooner than later.

Click past the jump to read more about Infiniti Emerg-E.

Source: AutoExpress

The 2014 running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb, which took place this weekend, waived its checkered flag over six competitors that completed the course in under 10 minutes and documented four new records. This year’s trophy was taken home by French driver Romain Dumas, who raced up the mountain in 9:5.801 in his Unlimited-class 2013 Norma.

A little more than two seconds behind Dumas came Greg Tracy. The U.S.-born driver needed 9:08.188 minutes to complete 12.42-mile course in the all-electric Mitsubishi MiEV Evolution III . Tracy not only won the Electric Modified class, but also became the first competitor in Pikes Peak history to finish under the 10-minute mark on a motorcycle and in a car. Right behind Tracy arrived Hiroshi Masuoka, also driving a MiEV Evolution III. The Japanese driver ran the 156-turn course in 9:12.204 minutes to give Mitsubishi a spectacular 1-2 class and 2-3 overall finish, respectively.

Three more drivers took the checkered flag in less than 10 minutes: Clint Vahsholtz (Ford, 9:54.700), Michael Skeen (Nissan , 9:55.471), and Jeremy Toye (Kawasaki, 9:58.678). They all scored victories in the Open Wheel, PPC Open and Motorcycle Open categories, respectively.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2014 Pikes Peak Hill Climb results.

Electric-powered vehicles have been all the rage as of late, but consumers are still wary of them. The main issues preventing buyers from ditching refined dino blood and moving to electric are the uncertainty of the technology and the overall cost of these vehicles. The least-expensive, mass-produced electric vehicle that I can think of is the 2014 Mitsubishi i-MiEV at around $23,000, but it can only travel 62 miles on a charge and takes 14 to 22 hours to recharge. On the other hand, the cream-of-the-crop Tesla Model S can travel up to 300 miles on a charge, but it costs nearly $100k to get into that range. According to a new report from Reuters, Audi is looking into giving buyers a bigger EV selection, as it has blueprints to enter the all-electric realm with a full range of vehicles.

We already know about the Audi R8 e-tron, which has been on and off for the last few years, but this report points toward Audi developing SUVs and sedans to complete the range. For now, Audi is keeping most of the details behind this electric lineup to itself, but it did release a few small bits of information.

Click past the jump to read more about Audi’s plans to go electric.

Source: Reuters

Looks like Tesla is gearing up for production of its highly anticipated Model X crossover in the early parts of 2015, according to a forum post on Tesla’s own website. Though the new crossovers were promised by 2014, the company has experienced delays and setbacks with moving its second large-scale vehicle into production.

The information doesn’t come from a fancy press release or a news conference from Elon Musk, but rather an email directed to reservation holders of the Model X. At 7:30 a.m. on June 16, a reservation holder received an email from Tesla revealing plenty of details about the Model X’s confirmed features and its eventual production dates. You can read the email after the jump.

As far as the SUV itself, the email confirms the inclusion of the Falcon wing doors, standard all-wheel-drive, an optional third row, and a folding second and third row for increased storage. The Model X will also be able to take full advantage of Tesla’s growing Supercharger network for recharging on the go — an obvious good idea on Tesla’s part.

The email continues in saying the Model X will be built Fremont, California, within Tesla’s expanded facilities and production lines. Initial builds will start in the early months of 2015 with full production ramping up by the fall.

Click past the jump for more info and to read the email from Tesla

Source: CarAndDriver

The culture of open-source information just got a massive supporter. Tesla Motors has voluntarily revoked every patent the company previously held in the field of electric-powered vehicles, opening up other companies to use Tesla’s original ideas for free.

The unprecedented move comes as Tesla Motors’ founder and CEO Elon Musk released a statement citing his passion for zero-emissions vehicles and his belief in the growing need for such vehicles. “Given that annual new vehicle production is approaching 100 million per year and the global fleet is approximately 2 billion cars, it is impossible for Tesla to build electric cars fast enough to address the carbon crisis.”

With that, the company is now open to sharing its discoveries and innovations in developing, building, selling, and recharging electric vehicles. Well-established automakers like General Motors, Ford Motor Company, Toyota Motor Corporation, and others will now have free access to Tesla’s once-protected innovations.

Musk further elaborates in his candidly written letter that the electric car industry and eventually the world will benefit from having access to open-sourced and rapidly evolving technology.

Tesla originally held patents on its developments out of fear the large automakers would copy the technology and snuff out Tesla’s small operation. However, now that Tesla has made a such a name for itself and has a well-established (yet still rapidly growing) network of Supercharger recharging stations, that likelihood has diminished. What’s more, Musk points out that out of the 100-million vehicles produced annually, less than one percent of those are zero emissions. Thus far, Tesla’s competition seems noticeably absent.

Click past the jump to read more about Tesla’s giveaway.


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