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Cars by Remote Control

High-tech apps enable smart phones to find your car in a parking lot,  remotely start the engine, and control charging your EV. There’s good reason for the push toward integrating smartphone-based remote control with electric vehicles and this trend should only accelerate. Remote control is a vital function for plug-in electric vehicles because of the need […]

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Driven to Distraction

'Eyes on the road,' we’re told. But a growing array of on-board electronics systems are inspiring or requiring our attention. Today, we have assistance in keeping our focus with lane departure, pedestrian, and drowsy driver warning systems, along with brake assistance and active cruise control. All are now standard equipment on many high-end cars and they're […]

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Smart Electric Production Begins in France

Production of the new smart fortwo electric has begun at the automaker’s newly expanded Hambach plant in France. This is the first time that electric smarts have been produced as an integral part of a conventional smart assembly line alongside internal combustion engine variants. The ability to accept diverse powerplants is a key attribute of […]

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The Case for Natural Gas Transportation

For decades, both natural gas and electric vehicles have competed as alternatives to vehicles running on gasoline or diesel fuel. Now, it looks like sales of EVs may finally get traction in the U.S. But what about NGVs? While there are over 13 million natural gas vehicles in use worldwide, fewer than 200,000 NGVs, mainly […]

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A Shift to High MPG

Advanced powerplants represent but one method of gaining better fuel efficiency. In the propulsion realm, high-tech transmissions also play an important role. Their evolution is notable. In earlier years, cars came with three-speed manual transmissions while automatics had only two or three gear ratios. Today, five-speed manuals are the rule with some high performance cars […]

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Don't Let Politics Kill American Innovation

The huge gulf between environmentalists and the auto industry is shrinking. The relationship between these two interests has evolved to where we are finding a way to agree, and not just reflexively oppose everything the other side has to say.  Last summer, automakers and environmentalist joined together to support the historic new clean car agreement […]

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Rising Gas Prices Show Importance of EVs

Revenge has come. In April, 200 Sierra Club members across the country hosted screenings of Revenge of the Electric Car. Thousands gathered to watch a great film and welcome electric vehicles that seemed impossible only a few years ago.  As EVs are hitting the market, Big Oil, their cronies on Fox News, and even presidential candidates […]

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Meeting the Natural Gas Vehicle Challenge

Though natural gas vehicles (NGVs) have been around since the 1930s, they have never been able to break through the barriers to their widespread application in America – special infrastructure requirements, a shortage of fueling stations, and awkward, expensive fuel tanks that must be filled at pressures as high as 3600 psi. Moreover, until just […]

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EV Deployment Key to Moving Away from Oil

President Obama has announced proposals for continued support of advanced car and truck technologies, including EVs and other alternative fuel vehicles as well as infrastructure needed to support these vehicles. These proposals, and others like it, are essential for advancing technology that can help alleviate pain at the pump and dependence on oil. The proposal […]

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Michigan as the New Silicon Valley?

Can Michigan become the Silicon Valley of mobility? Ford Motor Company executive chairman Bill Ford seems to think so. He’s calling for policy reform to make this happen, pointing at the integration of communications and vehicle technologies as key to solving urban mobility challenges while creating more high-tech Michigan jobs in the process. These aren’t […]

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The Evolving Auto Scene: Are NGVs Next?

The auto field has seen interesting twists and turns over the years as it has explored the use of alternative fuels and advanced technologies to improve environmental performance. I have witnessed the ebb and flow of focus on fuels ranging from hydrogen, methanol, ethanol, propane, and natural gas to battery electric, gasoline-electric hybrid, plug-in hybrid, […]

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CODA Electric Now in Motion

CODA Automotive has been selected as one of 40 businesses to be profiled in The GOOD Company Project, a collaboration between the integrated media platform GOOD and IBM. The GOOD Company Project highlights 40 businesses for their positive contributions toward economic and social improvement. Over the past few months, CODA has delivered its first fleet vehicle […]

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Enterprise Expands Car Sharing Program

Enterprise Holdings, parent of the Enterprise Rent-A-Car, National Car Rental, and Alamo Rent A Car brands, specializes in renting cars at airports and in neighborhood locations across the country. While best known for its ubiquitous rentals like Chevy Impalas and Toyota Corollas, in some markets drivers can choose ‘green’ models ranging from Toyota Prius and […]

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Mitsubishi i Evolution in Pikes Peak Race

Two electric Mitsubishi race cars will compete in this year's annual running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb in Colorado Springs, Colorado this July. One of these will be an essentially stock version of the 2012 Mitsubishi i with a more aerodynamic front bumper, roll cage, and safety equipment, which will be driven by […]

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Chrysler Offers Wireless In-Car Charging

Okay, let’s admit it. We’ve come to depend on electronics in our lives and indispensible devices of all sorts have transitioned from our homes and pockets to our cars. So it’s no surprise that automakers and accessory companies have recognized the importance of making this an easy and convenient transition for us. Hands-free, Bluetooth, and […]

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How Natural Gas is Becoming a Major Transportation Fuel

Abundant domestic supplies, low emissions and cost, and activities by Clean Energy Fuels are bringing clean natural gas to our highways at an accelerated pace  

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Toyota RAV4 EV a Reality, at $50,000

Toyota has a long history in developing electric drive vehicles. Nobody can dispute its unparalleled success at dominating the gasoline-electric hybrid market with its venerable Prius, or how this success has led to a family of highly-efficient vehicles under a Prius sub-brand. Now the automaker has unveiled its new RAV4 EV that’s been developed in […]

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Few Cars Using Cylinder Deactivation

According to the Environmental Protection Agency’s latest ‘Light-Duty Automotive Technology, Carbon Dioxide Emissions, and Fuel Economy Trends’ report, cylinder deactivation is an increasingly popular way to net greater efficiency from a V-6 or V-8 engine. However, the technology is largely bypassing passenger cars. Cylinder deactivation was found in 38 percent of all pickups, 17 percent […]

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