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.

The constant race for innovation comes in its truest form in the auto industry with companies spending millions of dollars in pursuit of that one breakthrough that can redefine the business.

To its credit, BMW may have come to that road with its laser light technology.

Different from the popular LED lights that have become prevalent in the industry, laser lights are being propped as the next evolution in lighting technology, with promises of being safer and more efficient than their LED counterparts.
BMW is tapping into this new technology, which they will use for the first time on the 2015 i8 hybrid sports car , an appropriate choice if there ever was one because of the i8’s own place as its own technologically savant piece.

So why are laser lights safer and more efficient than LEDs? For starters — and this is going to a new level of geekdom, so strap on and try to keep up — laser lights are safer in a sense that they are more focused on what their shining on, which in this case is the road. What this does is reduce the strain caused to oncoming cars, reducing the possibility of angry drivers flipping you the bird as you pass them.

Light strength is another distinct advantage for laser lights, something BMW alludes to in the video above. Compared to light range of standard LEDs, an LED high beam equipped with laser lights is capable of extending that range to an incredible 600 meters (1,970 feet). By comparison, an LED low beam only has a 100-meter (328 feet) range with the high beam at 300 meters (985 feet). Significant stuff right there.

As far as efficiency is concerned, laser lights draw so little energy that they automatically reduce a car’s energy consumption. Laser lights also have smaller lighting diodes, 100 times smaller than the cells used in LEDs, giving BMW designers more flexibility and leeway in designing their lights setup, specifically the ones you’ll find on the i8.

Unfortunately, laser lights don’t come standard on the i8; instead, BMW is offering them as an option for the high-beam mode on the hybrid sports car.

Still and all, its a technology that we’re going to see and hear about in the coming years. That’s what happens when you’re dealing with something that has the potential to be a technological evolution.

Click past the jump to read more about the 2015 BMW i8

Posted on by Simona  
BMW i8 Concept Spyder

Back in 2012, BMW unveiled the i8 Spyder Concept car , which wasn’t a big surprise considering that the coupe concept appeared ripe for a removable top.

Now, that the i8 Coupe is ready to hit showrooms, potential buyers are waiting for a production version of the i8 Spyder to also hit the market.

A recent report from Bimmerpost suggests that BMW officials have approved the i8 Spyder for production, and that we should see it sometime in late 2015. The same report also suggests that BMW has already unveiled a production-ready model to insiders sometime last Friday. This production model featured a Solar Orange exterior paint — identical to what we’ve seen on the i3 — combined with blue highlights.

Of course the i8 Spyder will share the engine and the technical features with its coupe sibling. The exterior will remain nearly identical to the concept version, but with with the production styling aspects of the i8 Coupe.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW i8 Coupe.

Source: Bimmerpost
Posted on by Simona  

Honda announced today the first details on the next-generation Fit Hybrid that is set for release on the Japanese market this September. The third-generation Fit will be one of the most innovative hybrid models ever offered by Honda. It will be the first Honda model equipped with the Sport Hybrid Intelligent Dual Clutch Drive (i-DCD) that will ensure a fuel economy ratings of 36.4 kilometers per liter (about 86 mpg).

The new hybrid system combines a newly developed 1.5-liter in-line four-cylinder engine with the earlier mentioned i-DCD. The i-DCD system includes a seven-speed DCT system with a built-in high-output motor and the IPU (intelligent power unit) equipped with a built-in lithium-ion battery.

There is also an electric servo brake system that stores energy while braking and provides a fully-electric compressor that reduces engine load. With all these updates, Honda’s new hybrid system ensure a fuel economy improvement of 35 percent when compared to the current IMA hybrid system.

The new hybrid system also features three driving modes that alternate between gasoline and electric, depending on the driving situation: EV Drive, Hybrid Drive Mode and Engine Drive Mode.

Before you get too excited, you have to know that this Fit will not be offered on the U.S. market. However, Honda plans to use this technology in the U.S. on a sedan that it will build on the Fit platform.

Click past the jump to read more about the Honda Fit.

Audi ’s dominance of endurance racing has become the stuff of legend and just when it appeared that the company had earned a slack off in preparations, think again.

The 2014 R-18 e-tron quattro LMP1 racer will make you believe otherwise.

Fresh off of another dominant showing at the 2013 World Endurance Championship, Audi is taking to heart the saying "the early bird gets the worm" with the early development of the R18 e-tron quattro LMP1 race car . Testing is set to begin this week with particular emphasis being put on achieving high fuel efficiency, using its sophisticated hybrid drive systems.

That’s the kind of thing you’d expect from a champion that wants to win more and not sit on its laurels and bask in all the glory it has earned.

As for the car itself, the 2014 R18 e-tron quattro LMP1 racer is expected to feature a flywheel-based, electric-drive system paired with a powerful TDI engine. Exact specifications have yet to be revealed, but preparations are already underway to build a race car that can take advantage of the company’s expertise in endurance racing, while also fitting in new rules in the WEC with particular focus being paid to efficiency, and the use of advanced fuel-saving technology, like hybrid drive systems and diesel engines, to ensure that the race car is more than just competitive, but one that can live up to Audi’s sustained excellence in endurance racing.

Judging by its looks, the race car retains all the shapes and lines of the current R-18 e-tron quattro that the company used to win the 2013 WEC title. The full-blown, cockpit-style look is going to be kept, as are those vertical LED lights, the swooping flat nose, the enormous rear wing, and those bulging wheel arches that helps in keeping the race car low to the ground.

With Porsche , Toyota , and a host of other brands determined to push Audi off of its pedestal, the company is preparing a revised version of the R18 to ensure that things of those sort never happen.

Updated 03/26/2014: The new Audi R18 e-tron quattro made its first miles during the 2014 WEC season, not on the legendary race track in Western France but in public traffic. And these new cool pictures come to prove it. Enjoy!

Click past the jump to read about the 2014 Audi R18 e-tron quattro’s predecessor

Posted on by Simona  

When Porsche unveiled the 918 Spyder concept at the 2010 Geneva Motor Show we were all in amazement. Within that amazement was a sense of a sense of pessimism, as we were unsure exactly how this future successor to the Carrera GT would look and run in the real world. We all know that manufacturers have a habit of “overestimating” its cars at these shows, to put it nicely.

After more than three years, the 918 Spyder ended its testing phase and is ready for its world debut at the 2013 Frankfurt Motor Show. The 918 has made many passes around the “Green Hell,” thrashing its predecessor’s time in the process. All of these laps around the famed Nürburgring and at Porsche’s test facilities have given the automaker enough details to allow it to piece together all of its specs.

So, is the 918 Spyder everything it has been hyped up to be?

Update 10/02/2013: Porsche unveiled a new promo video (above) for the new 918 Spyder in that it explains the design concept behind the new supercar. Enjoy!

Update 11/18/2013: Shortly after the first 918 Spyder units were delivered, Porsche announced a series of improvements for the new electric supercar. With the new improvements, the model equipped with the Weissach package will go from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in just 2.6 seconds (-0.2 seconds), from zero to 200 km/h (124 mph) in 7.2 seconds (-0.5 seconds), and from 0 to 300 km/h (186 mph) in 19.9 seconds (-2.1 seconds). Also, when only the two electric motors run, the model goes from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.2 seconds, without producing any emissions.

Update 12/04/2013: Porsche unveiled a new video showing its new 918 Spyder in action on the on the Valencia racetrack. Enjoy!

Update 12/13/2013: Porsche unveiled today a new gallery for the new 918 Spyder showing for the first time the supercar in a different color than the usual grey. This time the car features a very cool yellow paint combined with lime green brake calipers.

Updated 02/27/2014: Porsche unveiled a new video in which it explains the optional Weissach package that adds a series of a carbon fiber components and makes the 918 Spyder about 90 pounds lighter.

Updated 04/14/2014: Porsche unveiled a new video showing multi-time champion Patrick Long, Porsche Works Driver behind the wheel of the new 918 Spyder. Enjoy!

Click past the jump to read our review and find out.

Posted on by Simona  

It looks like BMW hit the jackpot with its new lineup of electric and hybrid vehicles. While we weren’t very sure about the success of the i3 — its looks being the main cause of concern — it appears that BMW has already received a total of 10,000 orders for it, with the first units already being delivered to customers in Germany last week.

Along with the i3, the new i8 supercar is also a great hit, but that’s no surprise here. While BMW did not reveal just how many units will be delivered in its first year of production, it did announce that all i8 units are sold out. So, if you planned to buy an i8, you will now have to wait another two years.

On the U.S. market, both models will go on sale in 2014, with the i3 starting at $42,275 and the i8 checking in at $135,925.

Click past the jump to read more about the BMW i8.

Source: Reuters

Next week we’ll have two major auto shows that most of you likely already know about: one in Los Angeles and one in Tokyo, Japan. There is, however, a smaller show that is coming up in China, and that it the 2013 Guangzhou Motor Show . Despite its relatively small size, Lexus has chosen this show to debut the updated Lexus CT 200h .

With just a few days before its official debut, which occurs on November 21st, Lexus has unveiled the first details and a few images of the revised hybrid hatchback.

According to Lexus, the 2014 CT 200h will adopt the signature Lexus spindle grille, newly designed alloy wheels and a revised rear appearance with a "more horizontal structure."

Lexus didn’t give up any of the details on its powertrain, but we expect to see the same hybrid system, with the possibility of a few more horsepower and some fuel consumption improvements. This means you can expect to see a 1.8-liter gasoline-powered four-pot with a pair of electric motors that combine to put down 134 horsepower at least.

Updated 11/29/2013: Lexus announced prices for the 2014 CT 200h, which will go on sale in late January or early February 2014. Prices will start from the same $32,050 as the 2013 model, plus processing and handling fee of $910.

Click past the jump to read more about the Lexus CT 200h and to see a side-by-side comparison of the 2013 and 2014 models.

Posted on by Simona  

On of our favorite YouTube users, Marchettino, managed to shoot another incredible video. If we are not mistaken, this video shows the first non-red LaFerrari out there and more importantly, it shows it in action at Ferrari ’s famous Mugello circuit.

Marchettino caught the car driving around the circuit during the Finali Ferrari Challenge event, and the company’s test driver Dario Benuzzi, was at the helm.

This video offers up plenty of close-up images and tons of exhaust notes, ranging from its mean idle up to a full-throat sprint. We are pretty sure you will want to watch it again and again, while dreaming of dropping a massive sum of cash to pick up the LaFerrari.

A quick reminder, the LaFerrari features a hybrid powertrain that combines a 6,262 cc (6.3-liter) V-12 engine with two electric motors — one motor powers the driven wheels and the second drives the ancillaries. This system delivers a total of 963 horsepower — 800 delivered by the V-12 engine and 163 by the electric motors — and a peak torque in excess of 663 pound-feet. With this amount of power, the LaFerrari will sprint from 0 to 60 mph in just 3 seconds and up to a top speed of more than 217 mph.

It’s not quite the Toyota GT 86 , but it still has the dimensions of a cute little sports car , possibly even a precursor to a future rival for the Mazda MX-5 .

Or maybe not.

Either way, Toyota ’s Aqua C Air Roadster Concept looks the part of a fun car to drive, even if the reported performance numbers aren’t exactly what you’d call impressive.

As part of the Japanese automaker’s fleet that will be heading to the Tokyo Motor Show , the Aqua C Air Roadster Concept is a hybrid roadster that could very well be a preview of what a future hybrid roadster from Toyota may look like.

Seeing as the concept has been slotted as a B-segment vehicle, the Aqua C Air Roadster Concept only measures 3,990 mm (157 inches) long, 1,690 mm (66.5 inches) wide and 1,440 mm (56.7 inches) tall, with a wheelbase of 2,550 mm (100.4 inches). Doesn’t exactly inspire size and strength, does it?

Nevertheless, the roadster concept is also powered by a sophisticated powertrain that includes a 1.5-liter Atkinson-cycle engine and an electric motor. Taken together, the engine can produce up to 100 horsepower, while netting a fuel efficiency rating of 83.2 mpg.

Click past the jump to read about a Honda concept that could be a rival of the Aqua C Air Roadster Concept

Source: PriusChat
Posted on by Simona  
BMW i8

Almost two years ago, BMW and Toyota started talking about a possible partnership and once the papers were signed, they announced the new collaboration will bring a new sports car and new hybrid technologies for both companies.

Now, new details on this collaboration have surfaced online and they only bring good news. Apparently, Toyota’s supercar will be something similar to the previous Lexus LF-A supercar , but with a hybrid powertrain.

This new supercar will explore terrains never hit by the LF-A, like a hybridized V-8 engine. Even though Toyota was the first maker to offer hybrid cars in its lineup, it never had the courage to develop a hybrid hyper-car. However, things are about to change.

Sources suggest that the company is already testing the i8’s carbon-fiber frame , meaning that the two new supercars could also borrow elements from the i8. One thing is for sure though: Toyota Toyota will be the one coming with the hybrid technology since it already developed high-performance hybrid powertrains for the V-8-powered Lexus LS 600h. BMW BMW is also offering a very successful 4.4-liter, V-8 engine in its lineup, and a hybrid system from Toyota will only make it even more fuel efficient.

Everything else on these two new supercars is pure speculation, and there are still tons of question that need to be answered, but for sure more details will follow in the upcoming months, so stay tuned!

Click past the jump to read more about BMW i8 - the model that could inspire the new Toyota-BMW supercar.

Source: Motoring

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