Charged with the task of getting the fuel economy of the 2011 Chevy Equinox down to 32 mpg on the highway and beat out the 28 mpg-rated Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV4 and Ford Escape, GM engineers employed some rather unconventional fuel efficiency technology – active noise cancellation (ANC). By using the same technique used in noise cancelling headphones
, the team was able to let the Equinox’s engine run at a more fuel efficient rpm without the associated low frequency noise and achieve what GM claims is segment-leading fuel economy.
Opel has announced pricing and started taking reservations for the European sibling of the Chevy Volt
– the Opel Ampera
. Although prices between countries may differ due to different trim, Opel says the suggested retail price for the base model throughout Europe will start at 42,900 euro – that’s just over US$58,500 at the current exchange rate – which has raised eyebrows since the base price of the Volt in the U.S. is $41,000.
For fans of Corvettes, few vehicles could be better than a sexy, slinky ZR1... except, perhaps, a ZR1 with no direct CO2 emissions. That’s what Maryland-based Genovation Cars is in the process of creating with its electric G-Vette. This isn’t simply a matter of just dropping an electric motor into an existing car, however. In keeping with the company’s green philosophy, the custom body panels are being made from carbon fiber and soy-based resin, while the carpet and floor mats will be made from recycled plastic bottles. The one-of-a-kind automobile will serve as a test bed for Genovation’s research into advanced lightweight materials... and you might be able to buy the thing once they’re done with it.
It looks like orders for the Chevrolet Volt
have been flowing in since GM announced it was taking orders just last week. The auto-maker has now announced it will increase U.S. production capacity of its “extended range electric vehicle” by 50 percent, from 30,000 units to 45,000 units, in 2012. The announcement came as U.S. President Barack Obama toured the Detroit-Hamtramck facility, where the Volt is being produced for sale later this year.
There are businesses that let you glaze your own pottery, cook your own steak or pick your own strawberries, but when it comes to the hands-on experience, a new offer from General Motors has them all beat. If you order a 2011 Corvette Z06 or ZR1, you have the option of traveling to GM's Performance Build Center in Wixom, Michigan, and hand-assembling your car’s LS7 or LS9 engine. It’s called the Corvette Engine Build Experience, and is believed to be the first program of its kind (if any readers would like to dispute that claim, please do so). If you don’t like the idea of providing GM with your mechanical expertise for no cost, don’t worry - you’ll have to pay an extra $US5,800 for the privilege.
For those in the U.S. looking to be the first to get their hands on the Chevrolet Volt
GM has announced that it is now taking orders for the vehicle that is due at the end of the year. The Volt will initially be available to customers in California, New York, Washington, D.C., Texas, Michigan, Connecticut and New Jersey, but will be available nationwide in about 12-18 months from the start of production this winter.
A few days ago, I managed to get up close and personal in Shanghai
with one of the most interesting concept cars the world has yet seen. SAIC's Yez concept car is the first automobile, concept or otherwise, that's ever been conceived to have a negative carbon footprint. That is, it removes more pollution than it creates.
With the long-awaited Chevrolet Volt
set to hit showrooms later this year, GM has announced that early adopters (in certain cities) will be eligible for one of 4,400 free home charging stations. The 240-volt fast-charge station deal is tied to a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) program which aims to assess electric vehicle charging infrastructure requirements, meaning those who take up the offer will be required to share data on charging and use of their vehicle.
Not long ago we told you about the Moto Student competition
, wherein teams of students from across Spain and the rest of Europe are competing to build racing motorcycles. Well, a similar competition is underway in the US, and it’s called EcoCAR: The NeXt Challenge. In this contest, teams of North American engineering students are competing to convert GM-supplied vehicles into super-efficient, super-clean-running, high-tech wonders. The second year of the three-year contest wrapped up this week, with Mississippi State University (MSU) taking the top spot.
Each year as part of the Design Los Angeles Conference
held at the LA Auto Show, creative types from major car companies get to stare into their crystal balls and let their imaginations run wild in designing the car of the future. In 2007 the theme was the car 50 years from today
, last year the challenge was to envision how motor-racing will look in 2025
and this time around, the brief is to look at what young people will be driving in the year 2030.