Electric Blue sets EV speed record; petrol sales down; midweek newsbriefs

October 5, 2011 § Leave a comment

Another day, another EV speed record: the Brigham Young University team from Utah has achieved an average 155.8mph – and got up to 175mph at one point – on the Bonneville Salt Flats in the Electric Blue streamliner. It’s the culmination of a seven-year project involving over 130 students and a number of prior attempts.

  • Petrol sales are down 15%, according to figures from the AA, and £1.7billion less in the first six months of 2011 than January-June 2008. Drivers are cutting down on unnecessary journeys due to rising petrol costs, and are thought to be walking and cycling more for shorter trips, though the improved fuel economy of new cars is also said to be a factor. This is backed up by data from British Car Auctions’ Annual Used Car Market Report, which finds that fuel consumption is the top priority amongst car-buyers, with 27% actively seeking a more efficient vehicle. 17% were looking for a car with lower road tax. A quarter of the 4000 drivers surveyed said that a fuel price of £1.40 a litre would force them to change their driving patterns, and 10% a cost of £1.50 a litre. Interestingly, there’s also been a fall in the number of two-car households, and 5% fewer families (down to 72%) have a car.
  • A firm called Electric Mobile Cars is converting the Renault-Dacia Logan (including the pick-up) with its all-electric powertrain for sale in the US. More at Autoblog Green.
  • First prototypes of a Chinese-made Daimler-Byd EV will appear next April, reports Edmunds Inside Line. Mercedes doing most of the development work on the car, apparently.
  • The future of the internal combustion engine is “bright and clear”, says an EPA spokesman at the US Department of Energy Conference. More at Green Car Congress.
  • Meanwhile, the average car sold in Europe now emits 140g/km, which has been achieved at no extra cost despite protests from the automakers (The Guardian/Business Green).
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