Beyond the Paris Auto Salon…

September 28, 2012 § Leave a comment

This is how AMG does an EV: four electric motors, 740hp, 1000NM of torque, 0-60 in 3.9 seconds, and a great big 864-cell  lithium-ion battery. Mercedes-Benz showed the SLS AMG Coupe Electric Drive in Paris, and has confirmed its launch next summer. German price 416,500 euros (incl. VAT), UK sales to be discussed. Similarly rarified (though not confirmed for production as yet) is the plug-in hybrid Porsche Panamera Sport Turismo, a posh estate concept, which can do over 19 miles in all-electric mode. See also the Audi crosslane coupe concept, a small high-riding 2+2 with a new lightweight spaceframe structure (aluminium, glassfibre- and carbonfibre-reinforced polymers) plus three-cylinder 1.5 TFSI petrol engine and twin motors.

  • Daimler has bought a minority stake in Munich mobility provider tiramizoo, an online booking platform for courier/delivery services. Fits nicely with its Car2Go, moovel and carpooling.com activities.
  • And Smart owners can now register for free Car2Go membership (including those in the UK). Signing up to the smart add-on package also gets special offers on car rental (including a 20% discount with Europcar) and an RFID card/chip for automatic access/billing in APCOA car parks.
  • Apparently it’s Liftshare Week 1st-5th October – get carpooling. More at liftshare.com, a social enterprise-type operation which gives free public access to its membership scheme, funded by its CSR work.
  • Toshiba is joining Honda’s networked homes research project in Saitama; a third demo house will feature a home energy management system with both firms’ tech, incorporating EV charging, petrol engine co-generation and power self-sufficiency in the event of a disaster or mains outage. They’re going to look further into cloud-based networking as well as battery second-life. More here.
  • Walled garden alert: Tesla has developed solar-powered  ‘supercharger stations‘ for fast-charging EVs; they’ll give around 150 miles of range or three hours of driving on a half-hour charge. Six locations in California, with national and international roll-outs to follow; electricity will be free to Tesla Model S owners, but they’re the only ones who have compatible batteries anyway. Plus marks for the tech and scope of the plan; black marks for its non-Tesla availability.
  • Oh, and Dale Vince finally finished his Nemesis (Lotus Exige electric conversion); the car reached 148mph at Elvington Airfield, York, to set a new UK land speed record for electric cars.
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