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.

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

For the reputation that they’ve built as one of the finest Mercedes tuners in the world, Brabus is more than just fitting powerful V12 engines in their rocket vehicles. They’ve also found a way to be eco-friendly, and they’re doing so with the Brabus Techology Project Hybrid E-Class.

Based on the Mercedes E-Class sedan, the Technology Project Hybrid is a car that Brabus carefully modified to be the kind of eco-friendly diesel hybrid vehicle that fans of Mother Nature will love.

This is proof that you can have your cake and definitely eat it too.

So instead of a V12 engine, Brabus went and fitted a 2.2-liter clear diesel engine and combined with a pair of in-wheel electric motors that were sourced from Protean Electric. Each motor is capable of producing 110 horsepower and 590 lb/ft of torque and when combined with the 2.2 L diesel engine, allows the car to hit 0-62 mph in a pretty impressive 7.4 seconds. More impressive than that is that with this powertrain, the E-Class can improve its fuel economy by a staggering 30 percent, which is out-of-this-world for a car like a Mercedes.

Full specs behind the Brabus Technology Project Hybrid E-Class have yet to be announced, but from what we’ve gathered, this looks like a project that’s definitely worth keeping our tabs on.

Next Ferrari Enzo will be powered by the same V12 engine as the F12

A few weeks ago, we reported that the next Ferrari Enzo will be powered by the same V12 engine as the recently announced F12 Berlinetta . This engine will be combined with a 120 HP electric motor for a total output of 920 HP. Now for the better part of that announcement. When equipped with the new "HY-KERS" hybrid system, the future Enzo will shave three seconds off of the standard Enzo’s 0 to 200 km/h (124 mph) sprint time of 9.5 seconds!

This blistering 0-124mph sprint time of 6.5 seconds will be obtained even though the new HY-KERS system adds 264 lbs to the car’s total weight. To compensate with the extra power, Ferrari will cut weight from the car’s chassis and powertrain by using the same grade of carbon fiber found in Ferrari’s F1 cars. Compared to a standard Ferrari model not equipped with this system, the future Enzo Hy-Kers will also decrease fuel consumption by about 40%.

"We are entering the market with our Formula One-derived hybrid system, which will slash fuel consumption and increase performance," Ferrari CEO Amedeo Felisa said in an interview with Automotive News.

So we have watched as electric cars have begun infiltrating the market with maximum ranges of 70 to 150 miles per charge and a roughly 6- to 12-hour charging time. To be honest, that is just not a feasible solution for most drivers. We all know hybrids, as they have been around for what seems like forever now, but they are still reliant on gasoline and some actually get worse gas mileage than some gasoline-only cars.

This all leaves us scratching our heads looking for a solution to the gas crisis we are experiencing. Some people insist that hydrogen is the only real answer, but that experiment is far away from ever becoming a reality. There are two gasses that we have been using for ages to heat our homes and grill our food that a lot of people seem to forget, these are compressed natural gas and liquefied petroleum gas (propane).

Natural gas vehicles have been on the rise lately, with many fleet companies switching over to it, and forklifts have been propane-powered for ages. Recently, we even saw a performance car, the Maxximus LNG 2000 break a number of speed records, using natural gas as its fuel. This leads to the ultimate question of can CNG and LPG make their way into the performance and luxury car world to alleviate the gasoline crisis, especially in regards to fuel-hungry performance and luxury cars, as we find a real alternative?

Click past the jump to find out!


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