hybrid cars

hybrid cars

  A hybrid vehicle uses multiple propulsion systems to provide motive power. This most commonly refers to gasoline-electric hybrid vehicles, which use gasoline (petrol) and electric batteries to power internal-combustion engines (ICEs) and electric motors.

Posted on by Brad Anderson 2

Despite the various high-speed crashes which took place at the recent 2012 24 Hours of Le Mans , Audi managed to come out on top for the 11th time in 13 years. With both Toyota LMP1 cars crashing out in the early stages of the race, one could argue that Audi was destined all along to take victory.

However, one could never have imagined that Audi managed to wrap up all three podium places with its incredible R18 race cars, two of which are e-tron Quattro-diesel-hybrids while the other two who finished in 3rd and 5th were the more conventional R18 Ultra diesel-powered racers.

Driving the victorious Audi R18 e-tron was Marcel Fässler, André Lotterer, and Benoît Tréluyer. This victory marks a historic day in Le Mans history as the victorious car is the first diesel-hybrid to ever sit upon the top step of the podium and could help pave the way for more fuel-efficient LMP1 racers.

Audi board member Rupert Stadler stated, "By achieving this further success at the world’s most important endurance race our engineers demonstrated their high technological expertise in a particularly impressive way. With the e-tron Quattro in combination with ultra-lightweight design, we put a completely new technology on the grid and immediately won with it – this cannot be taken for granted by any means, particularly here at Le Mans."

It’s inevitable that Audi has already turned its attention to next year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans, where we expect to see even more hybrid-diesels contesting.

Chevrolet Volt

On the surface, the Chevy Volt is actually a pretty good looking car, if you are able to ignore the fact that it pumps out only 149 horsepower from its paltry1.4-liter engine and uses an electric motor for 30 miles before the gas engine ever kicks in. We’re not trying to say it’s a sports car, but it could certainly fall into the sports sedan area.

Unfortunately, we come right back to that 149 ponies and that immediately disqualifies this otherwise stylish car from sniffing the sports sedan segment. Well, GM obviously has noted the potential for the Volt and rumors are now swirling around that Chevy will start installing the turbocharged 2.0-liter engine that the all-new Buick Verano T is receiving into the Volt .

As of now, this is still a rumor, but given that the Cadillac ELR and its sexy exterior is due to debut any time now and will likely ride on the same platform as the Volt, it only makes sense to use the powerful boosted 2.0. The ELR with only 149 horsepower would be like dumping a Civic Si engine in a Ferrari , it just doesn’t quite fit the looks.

We are uncertain if the Volt receives the full-powered version of the 2.0-liter engine, or a detuned model, it will mean that the Volt could push up to 270 horsepower, if it receives the full-power 2.0. Also floating around is a rumor that this new engine will receive a larger electric motor for a little extra gasoline-free oomph.

All we can say is that we truly hope that these rumors are true, as the Volt in its current form is underwhelming, to say the least. We’ll keep you updated as more details roll out on this possible upgrade.

Source: InsideEVs
BMW 3 Series Sedan

We already know that BMW has officially approved the manufacture of its much anticipated hybrid sports car, the i8 and we are well aware that the gasoline engine behind it is a 1.3-liter three-banger that pops out a sweet 223 horsepower. When combined with the electric motor on the front wheels, the i8 hits a healthy 354 ponies.

BMW has just revealed yet another detail on its upcoming i8, and that is that the thee-pot gas burner that powers it will hail from Jolly Ol’ England… Hams Hall factory in Birmingham Birmingham , to be precise. Head of engine development at BMW, Peter Nefischer, mentioned before that the boosted three-cylinder could find its way into the 3-Series in the future and the fact that this engine is being built in the same factory that manufactures the 3-Series engine could add some validity to this possible downsizing of the 3-Series .

With the 328i already coming stock with a 240-horsepower turbocharged 2.0-liter, there is no reason that an extended fuel range model boasting this 223-horsepower, 1.3-liter engine cannot become a possibility. Granted, it likely wouldn’t have quite the drivability of the 2.0-liter, but the extended fuel range would help traveling business people a great deal, while still having a little pep in its step. In addition, those 223 ponies still far exceed the paltry 201 ponies pumped out by the Mercedes-Benz C250 .

We can say with some certainty that a three-cylinder 3-Series variant will definitely happen, it’s just a matter of when it happens and how BMW tunes the engine to retain the comfortable feel that the 3-Series is notorious for. We’ll update you if any other news pointing toward a three-banger 3-Series pops up.

Toyota Racing TS030 Hybrid

It looks like Toyota , after a very huge hiccup, is set to return to the world of Lee Mans racing. Its pair of TS030 Hybrids have completed their first testing run at Cirque De La Sarthe – the name of the 24 Hours of Le Mans track. This test wasn’t just any test either. The all-new hybrid tested very well, as both cars finished the 10 laps required to qualify and the fastest lap amongst the two was 3:27.204, which was only 1.277 seconds slower than the fastest car (the Audi R18 E-Tron Quattro ).

The only issues with the run that Toyota Motorsport GmbH reported were a few bits of “minor bodywork damage,” which the team didn’t elaborate on in its press release. Other than that, the test was a complete success for the Toyota team, but it was down its main driver, Stéphane Sarrazin, who is recovering from injuries sustained in a bicycling accident. Sarrazin is expected to be ready to resume driving duties before the race starts next week, so everything is looking good for Toyota. With Sarrazin missing, Alex Wurz, Nicolas Lapierre and Kazuki Nakajima were behind the wheel of the No. 7 car, and the No. 8 car had Anthony Davidson and Sébastien Buemi piloting it.

With all of the new cars, like the Toyota TS030 and the extremely intriguing Nissan DeltaWing , this 24 Hours of Le Mans is sure to be a fun one to watch. The race starts on Saturday, June 16th and the green flag drops at 3:00 p.m. Le Mans time, which is 7:00 a.m. EST.

Click past the jump to read Toyota Motorsport GmbH’s full press release on the debut.

Audi doesn’t mind pushing the envelope a little further than most people would and has proven that with the release of a new Le Mans race car. The racer is called the R18 e-Tron hybrid quattro, a four-wheel driven diesel hybrid race car that’s set to compete at the legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans in France on June 16 and 17, 2012.

Working under the same principles as that of the Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid , the R18 e-Tron hybrid quattro uses kinetic energy that’s recovered whenever the car brakes, storing that energy in the flywheel accumulator as electricity before being sent back to the electric motors on the front wheels. The motors take car of the front of the vehicle, while the rear wheels get their power from the car’s 510-horsepower V6 TDI engine. The only difference between the aforementioned Porsche and the R18 e-Tron hybrid quattro is that the latter is considered a mild hybrid, using a petrol engine along with electricity.

Since the car uses a heavy hybrid system, Audi went and designed the race car’s gearbox using carbon fiber composite housing, alleviating some of the weight brought about by the complicated drivetrain.

Before it struts its wares in Le Mans, the car will be put through the paces on May 5th at the 6-hour race at Spa-Francorchamps in Belgium where it will be raced by Allan McNish, Dindo Capello Tom Kristensen and Benoît Tréluyer, André Lotterer and Marcel Fässler.

UPDATE 06/07/2012: Audi has unveiled a cool promo video for their brand new R18 e-Tron that will compete at the legendary 24 Hours of Le Mans race on Saturday, June 16th-17th 2012. The video presents Audi Audi ’s racing evolution, going from turbocharged direct injection (TFSI) up to turbo diesel (TDI) engines and the new e-tron.

The first generation Lexus ES has been unveiled in 1989 and 2013 model year marks both the introduction of the sixth generation , but also the first-ever hybrid model of the line-up: the ES 300h.

The new ES 300h will be offered with the Lexus Hybrid Drive that combines a 2.5-liter four-cylinder Atkinson cycle engine with an electric motor for a total of 200 HP and an impressive fuel economy of 39 mpg combined. The car can hit a top speed of 112 mph and will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in just 8.1 seconds and the quarter mile in 16.8 seconds.

"Since its introduction in 1989, the ES has been the benchmark luxury sedan for quality, reliability, ride comfort and value," said Mark Templin, Lexus group vice president and general manager. "The new ES 350 and the first ever ES hybrid raise the bar once again."< /p>

Updated 07/16/2012: Lexus has announced today that the 2013 ES 300h will arrive at dealerships next month. The model will be priced at $38,850, representing a difference of $2,750 over the ES 350 - priced at $36,100.

Hit the jump to read more about the 2013 Lexus ES 300h.

One of the auto industry’s highly anticipated secrets is finally ready to break cover at the 2012 New York Auto Show .

For the fine folks of Fisker , the debut of the Fisker Atlantic - ’twas once codenamed "Project Nina" - marks as a celebration in its own right, a culmination of years of hard work and dedication.

And now that it’s ready for its world premier, Fisker has come out with the first official details of the car, as well as photos that finally gives us a good look at what they’ve been working on all this time.

Judging by its looks, the Atlantic looks like a bigger version of the Karma, albeit with a more pronounced stance that’s typical of its sedan form. The unmistakable Karma grille is also present, which we’ve never been fans of from the beginning.

All in all, though, the Atlantic looks pretty neat and when matched with a hybrid powertrain should make for a model that would draw the interest of a lot of people.

UPDATE 05/21/12: InsideEVs appears to have discovered new information about the Fisker Atlantic, involving the car’s official power train and how much it’s going to cost.

While we initially thought the the car would have a 2.0-liter engine similar to the 328i sedan with a matching electric motor, producing a total of 240 horsepower, it appears that the Atlantic will have a little bit more ponies than we thought. According to InsideEV, the car will be powered by a turbocharged four-cylinder engine and an electric drivetrain, producing an output of 300 horsepower with a 0-60 mph time of 6.5 seconds and CO2 emissions of around 50 g/km.

It looks like the Atlantic will be carrying a sticker price of anywhere between $50,000 - $60,000. That’s still a far departure from the Karma, which retails now for just under $100,000.

Find out more about the Fisker Atlantic after the jump.

Porsche 918 Spyder

Porsche has just dropped a series of new official details and images on their upcoming 918 Sypder , and while we were reading the press release, our spy photographers sent us a new set of spy shots of the upcoming supercar. We’re guessing these photos were taken in the same place the "official" spy shots were taken, but our images show the car from a few more angles.

The future 918 Spyder is set to be unveiled at the end of September 2013 as planned, with the first customers receiving their vehicles before 2013 is out. It will combine a 4.6 liter V8 of combustion engine and two independent electric motors – one on the front axle and one in the drive line, acting on the rear wheels - for a total output of more than 770 HP according to Porsche. However, if rumors are true, then this Porsche will be dishing out somewhere in the 800 HP area (570 HP from the V8 engine, 120 HP from the rear electric motor, and 110 HP from the front one). The hybrid supercar will also have an impressive fuel economy of 3 liter per 100 kilometers and Porsche says it will come with "spectacular solutions such as a full carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) monocoque with unit carrier, fully adaptive aerodynamics, adaptive rear-axle steering, and the upward-venting “top pipes” exhaust system. "

All of that gets us truly hyped about this hybrid monster, but the Porsche 918 Spyder will be priced in the $850K area and only 918 units will be built, so don’t expect to see it on every street corner.

German tuner, Hofele Design, has earned a stellar reputation as one of the leading Porsche Cayenne tuners in the world. Their program for the Porsche SUV, called the "Cayster GT 670 ," has been developed for a number of model years for the Cayenne and we’re not the least bit surprised to find out that they’ve released an updated version for the 2012 model.

Made up of a comprehensive aerodynamic body kit to go with a performance program, the 2012 Cayster GT 670 is one Cayenne that has truly been modded to look more aggressive than a standard 2012 Cayenne looks.

The first part of the package is a 14-piece aero kit that includes a number of new "bolt-on" components, including a new front bumper with integrated LED lights, widened wheel arches, a new "PowerDome" hood, new side sills, a rear spoiler and roof wing, and a new rear bumper with its own diffuser. Rounding off the exterior changes are a new set of 20" or 22" alloy wheels that have been finished in either black or silver.

Inside, the German tuner fitted new two-tone "StarLight" leather seats with quilted accents and Hofele Design logos embroidered on the headrests.

As far as performance is concerned, Hofele Design has a number of modifications for both the Cayenne Diesel and Cayenne S Hybrid. For the former, the engine enhancements increased the output of the SUV from the standard 241 horsepower and 405 lb/ft of torque all the way up to 296 horsepower and 479 lb/ft of torque. Meanwhile, the latter gets an increased output of 474 horsepower and 543 lb/ft of torque, a significant improvement from the standard model’s 374 horsepower and 427 lb/ft of torque numbers.

Bentley Continental GT V8

Bentley’s Continental lineup currently features a GT Coupe and a GTC Convertible , but now rumors are milling around that the company is working on a new GTH, with "H" standing for hybrid. Bentley has already downsized quite a bit with their engines, going from the popular W12 down to a V8 in their new GT. Now it seems as though added pressure from the "greener" way of doing things has prompted them to add an electric motor into the equation.

It is believed that the next hybrid system will be derived from the power source used in the Porsche Cayenne S Hybrid and Volkswagen Touareg Hybrid . This means we will see a V6 engine combined with an electric motor, but with more than 380 HP for the sports hybrid. A similar system will also be used for the upcoming Bentley SUV, with an autonomy of 30 kilometers in pure electric mode.

It is rumored that the future GTH will be shown off earlier than we would initially expect, with the 2013 Geneva Motor Show being the prime location for the unveiling. Sales would then begin later in the Summer 2013.

Source: Groen7

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