Midweek briefs Mk2

July 13, 2011 § Leave a comment

Audi’s A1 e-tron concept won the Silvretta electric car rally  last weekend. The three-day, 190-mile route through high altitudes and up Alpine ascents included tests for performance, efficiency and overall aptitude The e-tron combines a 75kW electric motor with a 254cc range-extender engine (a rotary unit) to give a 31-mile all-electric range, and can be quick-charged in 30 minutes.

  • Volvo is working on three distinct extended-range EV concepts. Concept I has a three-cylinder flex-fuel (E85-compatible) engine (60bhp) and 40-litre fuel tank, which drives a generator to power a 111bhp electric motor; it’ll do 68 miles in all-electric mode before the engine kicks in, extending the total range to 620 miles. Concept II has a turbocharged, 190bhp version of the engine driving the rear wheels, plus the 111bhp motor for a parallel hybrid set-up, and a 40kW generator to give an all-electric mode. Concept III has the engine, motor and generator all mounted up front, and is electric-only up to 31 mph. Full lowdown at Green Car Congress.
  • The biogas-fuelled garbage truck (see below)? Pah! 1060 all-electric dustcarts are hitting the streets of Beijing. There are three versions – two-tonne, 8-tonne and 16-tonne payloads – giving a range of upto 67 miles and a top speed of up to 87mph; all the trucks were developed and built in China (People’s Daily Online, via Autoblog Green).
  • Mitsubishi is to launch a plug-in hybrid version of its Outlander Sport crossover in 2013; it’ll be sold in the USA, and combine a 1.6-litre petrol engine with electric-drive powertrain (Ward’s Auto).
  • Fisker has taken 3000 orders for the $100,000 plug-in hybrid Karma; first buyer to take delivery will be Leonardo Dicaprio. The car’s sold out till 2012; convertible, saloon and ‘shooting brake’ versions will follow, plus the more compact ‘Project Nina’ range. More at Autocar.
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