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Hybrid

— Automotive

New Chevy Volt gets sportier looks, 50 miles of electric drive

GM is using the 2015 North American International Auto Show to reaffirm its commitment to electric power. Not only did it reveal the all-electric Bolt concept car, it rolled the second-generation Volt out under the lights. In designing the 2016 Volt, GM relied heavily on feedback from first-generation Volt owners, developing a sportier, higher performance plug-in with an all-electric range boost of more than 30 percent. Read More
— Automotive

Acura's second-generation NSX finally reaches production specification

The Acura NSX finally made it into production specification today in Detroit and, as expected, the wait has been worthwhile. The internal combustion engine is now hyperventilating with twin-turbos instead of the naturally-aspirated version we saw previously, it boasts three electric motors and pushes more than 550 hp through a nine-speed dual clutch transmission, while the price tag will be in the vicinity of US$150,000 when it lands later this year. Read More
— Automotive

Porsche unveils high-tech 918 facility

The Porsche 918 Spyder hybrid supercar has been called the "genetic blueprint for the Porsche sports car of the future," but the technical innovations aren't restricted to the car's two electric power systems and V8 engine punching 887 bhp. The company has also put a lot of innovation into its Porsche 918 Spyder factory in Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen. The 4,000 sq/m (43,000 sq/ft) facility where the 918 is hand built employs 100 people and uses a new take on the assembly line. Read More
— Automotive

Cotton cars to bring down costs of composites

Built in East Germany, the Trabant 601 was notorious for its many faults – not the least of which was a body made out of Duroplast, a hard plastic made of cotton waste and phenol resins that led those in the West to describe the car as being made of cardboard. However, it now looks as if the Trabant is getting the last laugh as scientists look at ways of making cars out of cotton and other botanical fibers formed into a new class of hybrid composites. Read More
— Space

Starscraper aims at cheaper, gentler suborbital rocket

The International Space Station (ISS) may get all the glory, but suborbital rocket flights still play a vital part in space research. The problem is that even though such flights only go to the edge of space, they are expensive, few in number, and put massive stresses on experiments. Partly funded by a Kickstarter campaign, students at Boston University are developing an inexpensive suborbital rocket for educational purposes that uses new engine designs to create a cheaper, reusable suborbital rocket that's easier on the payload. Read More
— Automotive

Volvo claims XC90 T8 hybrid is world's most powerful and cleanest SUV

Volvo has finally revealed the full details of the high-tech T8 powertrain that will power the plug-in hybrid version of its XC90 SUV. The XC90 T8 combines an electric motor with Volvo's supercharged and turbocharged Drive-E four cylinder engine, for a hybrid system that can run in electric-only mode for zero-emissions driving or combined with the ICE for increased power. Read More
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