Start the week
February 22, 2010 § Leave a comment
– Hydrogen-powered London taxis, developed by Lotus using fuel cells from Intelligent Energy, will hit the road in time for the 2012 Olympics. A top speed of 81mph, 0-60mph in a respectable 12 seconds, and a range of over 250 miles on a full tank of hydrogen, is promised; the powertrain can be retro-fitted into conventional vehicles already on the road. London deputy mayor Kit Malthouse has promised six hydrogen refuelling points in the capital by 2012, and wants 20-50 fuel cell taxis in operation plus 150 hydrogen-powered buses (The Guardian).
– Honda is developing a hybrid system suitable for large MPVs and SUVs. This is at an ‘advanced’ stage, reports Reuters, and could be launched next year.
– Biofuel of the day: fruit peel. Prof Henry Daniell of the University of Florida, Gainesville, has developed a technique to turn fruit peel – as well as sugar cane and straw – into sugar, and then to ferment it into ethanol, using enzymes. This project is funded by the US Department of Agriculture (Engineeringuk.com).
– Fiat is launching a fleet-issue version of its eco:Drive software, which enables analysis of vehicle mileage, fuel consumption and driving style to give claimed fuel savings of up to 15%, if the advice is followed by drivers. It can be downloaded for all Fiat cars and vans equipped with the Blue&Me communications platform. Full low-down at Italiaspeed.com .