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The 1.5-litre Atkinson cycle petrol engine weighs 16.5 kg less and is 10 per cent smaller ...

The littlest Toyota, the Yaris, is about to become hybridized too, and the engineering job to reduce the size of its Hybrid Synergy Drive system for the diminutive car is worth a look. The system uses a new 1.5-litre Atkinson cycle petrol engine that weighs 16.5kg less and is 10 per cent more compact than the 1.8-litre unit used in the Prius and Auris. Likewise, other major components such as the electric motor, power control unit and transaxle were also made lighter and smaller, but the power has remained robust at 99 bhp (74 kW) - most importantly, the hybrid Yaris will go on sale mid-year with very low fuel consumption, emissions, and ownership costs.  Read More

The Mercedes Benz Citan will come in crewcab and mixed use interior as well as panel van Mercedes-Benz is to launch a new urban delivery van later this year named the Citan (“city” and “titan”) - the little brother to the Sprinter and Vito. The Citan will be first seen at the IAA Commercial Vehicle Show in Hanover in September. The new van will be available with petrol, diesel and electric drivetrains, and with panelvan, crewbus and mixed use bodies, and in a variety of lengths and weights. My bet is that there's an ideal base for a small campervan there too.  Read More

A compact five-seat people carrier based on the Fiat 500 The Fiat 500 dynasty is expanding once more. Recent additions include the Abarth and Cabrio versions, and now the 500L (the L stands for Large) is something completely different again. It's a compact five-seat people carrier, combining the passenger space of an MPV with the feel of a small SUV on the road and the restrained dimensions and efficiency of a B segment car. The 500L will debut at the Geneva Motor Show in March and will hit European markets in late 2012, with a choice of two petrol engines and the 1.3 liter MultiJet II turbodiesel engine.  Read More

Sony Cyber-shot WX50 Sony has announced that two new cameras will soon be joining its Cyber-shot compact range. Both the WX70 and WX50 feature enhanced sensitivity, 5x Optical Zoom and full HD video recording bolstered by improved image stabilization.  Read More

Chord Dice songwriting and teaching tool

We uncovered lots of fantastic technology-driven innovations at NAMM recently, but as we saw with PocketStrings, not all good ideas are built around transistors. Chord Dice is another example. This clever songwriting and teaching tool dispenses with chord charts and books and hangs musical theory on the roll of the dice.  Read More

Victorinox 1 TB SSD flash drive/pocket-knife combo

Not all that long ago the availability of a 1TB solid state drive (SSD) was big news, now you can fit them in your pocket … or in this case, your pocket-knife. Shown last week at CES, the Victorinox SSD features two interchangeable bodies - one with traditional Swiss Army Knife blade, scissors and nail file/screw driver combo, plus a second flight-friendly casing without any pointy bits. When the 1 TB model hits the market later this year Victorinox says it will be the world’s smallest high-capacity SSD drive available … but it won't come cheap.  Read More

The Top 10 things you CAN have for Christmas 2011

Having taken a look at some highly desirable items that are highly unlikely to find their way under the tree this year with our 2011 list of things you CAN'T have this Christmas, it's time for a look at some of the gear that might represent more realistic shopping options this festive season. There's definitely some items on the list we wouldn't mind receiving ourselves, while others fall into the category of "for the person who has everything" ... either way, there's sure to be something for every technophile in the household.  Read More

The Top 10 things you CAN'T have for Christmas 2011

With Christmas fast approaching it means it's time for our annual look back at some of the technology that caught our eye and had us wishing our fortunes didn't match that of the Greek economy. While not all of the items on this list can be had for an extremely large wad of cash, those that are available for purchase will only find their way down the chimneys of those with a lottery winning or ultra-wealthy - and ultra-generous - family member or friend. Still, Christmas is a time for miracles so it is in that spirit that Gizmag presents its 2010 top 10 list of things you can't have for Christmas this year.  Read More

BRD's electric off-road motorcycle range includes 'stealth' police bike

San Francisco's BRD Motorcycles has begun taking deposits on the 2013 RedShift range of off-road electric motorcycles. BRD claims the performance of the RedShift will be equal to or better than a top-end 250cc four-stroke race motorcycle, which is a lofty target. The most remarkable aspect is that it will sell both the US$15,500 SM supermoto and the US$15,000 MX motocrosser with a police kit for an additional US$2500 with stronger subframe to hold the included hard luggage, plus an uprated electrical system.  Read More

GM's new permanent magnet EV motor

General Motors will become the first American automotive manufacturer to build its own electric motors when production begins in White Marsh, Maryland, in late 2012. In promoting this capability, GM has released details of the first motor to be built there, the 85 kW (114 hp) permanent magnet motor to be used in the 2013 Chevrolet Spark EV.  Read More

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