Rimac Concept_One to debut in London; fuel cell and EV trials; micro-mobility and more

July 19, 2012 § Leave a comment

Another day, another red super-coupe… The Rimac Concept_One is to make its debut at the Salon Privé event, 5th-7th September in Syon Park, London. This Croatian-developed 1850kg machine has four independently-operating electric motors, one at each wheel, giving a faintly ridiculous 1088bhp in total. All this is kept in check by an all-wheel torque-vectoring system, accelerating/braking each wheel up to hundreds of times each second as required. 0-60? 2.8 seconds, top speed is 190mph and range is 373 miles. Not quite sure yet how they’ve managed that, but I guess that at a price of $1million each, anything is possible. A production run of 88 is planned.

  • Also on a supercar note: McLaren has been collecting ideas for a small, minimalist, stripped-down and eco-friendlier high-performance model of the future, and has held a competition for students on the car design course at the Royal College of Art. Pic of the winning design, and more on what the company’s considering, at Autocar.
  • Nissan’s investigating problems with the Leaf’s batteries in baking-hot Arizona: owners have reported loss of range and battery performance, due to the extreme heat the batteries are exposed to. More here.
  • The US Department of Energy has released its final report on its six-year, 180-vehicle fuel cell trial which involved some 3.6million miles and over 33,000 hydrogen fill-ups. The conclusion? Even the earliest cars achieved over twice the (net system) efficiency of comparable petrol models, driving ranges over 250 miles were achieved, and 2000-hour durability of the fuel cell stacks validated. Detailed breakdown of the report at Green Car Congress, report itself here.
  • The California Energy Commission has given a $95,000 grant to a team at UC Riverside to develop an algorithm for routing EVs to maximise their range. This will take into account road conditions and real-time traffic scenarios, type of roads, vehicle load and number of passengers, and work with the car’s navigation system with a view to enhancing range by over 10% (Green Car Congress).
  • More on micro-mobility: the University of Singapore is to run a year-long trial in partnership with the local Toyota business unit, using a fleet of ten Toyota Auto Body COMS (a single-seat micro-EV) for commuting around its campuses. The trial will look at usage of the vehicles, typical journeys, their performance in tropical conditions and the necessary infrastructure to set up larger schemes such as short-term self-service rentals. It’s seen as an important first step in reducing congestion and pollution in high-density cities such as Singapore. More at alphagalileo.
  • BYD is to supply electric buses to Uruguayan transport firms CTS and Buquebus, with a view to getting over 500 on the country’s roads by 2015. The BYD GreenCity buses have a range of 155 miles per charge, reports Green Car Congress.
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