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  1. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' Melfi plant is beginning to process of retooling to build a plug-in hybrid Jeep Renegade by 2020. The investment totaling 200 million Euros (about $229 million) will include modernizing the plant and training employees. FCA is planning to get pre-production models rolling off the line next year. Melfi is home to the Renegade and Fiat 500X production. FCA says the Renegade will become the third electrified vehicle in their lineup, following the Chrysler Pacifica PHEV and Ram 1500 eTorque mild hybrid. This is part of an effort to launch "12 electric propulsion systems (BEV, PHEV, full-hybrid and mild-hybrid)", adding that 30 different models would be equipped with one or more of these systems. No mechanical details were given on the plug-in hybrid system destined for the Renegade. Source: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Melfi Plant prepares for production of new Jeep Renegade Plug-in Hybrid The FCA Melfi Plant in Italy is beginning preparations to produce the Jeep Renegade Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle (PHEV) scheduled for market launch in early 2020. The Renegade PHEV will be produced alongside the Renegade and 500X full combustion engine products that are currently produced at the Melfi vehicle assembly plant. The pre-production units of the new Jeep Renegade PHEV are scheduled in 2019. The investment for the new engine launch equates to more than €200M and also includes a strong commitment by FCA for training all workers on the application of this new technology. The Plant facilities involved in the production will also be modernized accordingly. "With over 742,000 Renegades produced to date in Italy, the Melfi plant and the Renegade are the ideal location and the perfect product to launch the PHEV, further strengthening the offer of this highly successful Jeep", said Pietro Gorlier, Chief Operating Officer EMEA region. During the FCA Capital Markets Day on June 1, when the 2018-2022 business plan was presented to the financial community, it was stated that one of the most important change factors addressed in the strategic plan is electrification. Investments during the plan period result in a portfolio of technical solutions that will enable FCA to comply with the regulatory requirements in each sales region. At the same time, the technology will also be applied to enhance the specific strengths of each brand. The Renegade PHEV is the next step in FCA's roll-out of Electrification, following the launches of the PHEV Pacifica Minivan and the mild-hybrid e-Torque technology launched on the Ram 1500 truck earlier this year. By 2022, FCA will offer a total of 12 electric propulsion systems (BEV, PHEV, full-hybrid and mild-hybrid) in global architectures. Thirty different models will be equipped with one or more of these systems. London, 8 October 2018
  2. BMW will become the next automaker to drop their diesel offerings in the U.S. Speaking to Green Car Reports, BMW spokesman Alexander Schmuck revealed diesels would be dropped for the 2019 model year for the automaker to focus on plug-in hybrids. "We're putting all our eggs in the PHEV basket," said Schmuck. BMW brought back diesel power in 2008 with the 335d and X5 3.0d that used a turbodiesel inline-six. This would be followed up by a turbodiesel four-cylinder for the 3-Series and X3, along with the inline-six for the 5-Series. But the Volkswagen diesel emission scandal in late 2015, along with stringent emissions testing and standards have caused sales of diesel vehicles to drop. BMW's PHEV lineup is currently comprised of the 330e, 530e, 740e, and X5 xDrive40e. The automaker announced last week the 2021 X5 xDrive45e which boasts a range of 50 miles on electric power only. Source: Green Car Reports
  3. Previous Page Next Page Porsche continues its slow rollout of new Cayenne models with the introduction of the new E-Hybrid variant. Taking the turbocharged 3.0L V6 found in the base Cayenne, Porsche teams it up with an electric motor producing with 134 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque. Total output is rated at 455 horsepower and 516 pound-feet. This is paired with an eight-speed automatic and all-wheel drive. The run to 60 mph takes 4.7 seconds, about 0.2 seconds quicker than the twin-turbo V6 Cayenne S. Keep the accelerator pinned and the E-Hybrid will reach a top speed of 157 mph. Porsche has fitted a larger 14.1 kWh battery pack into the E-Hybrid. This allows the model to travel 44 kilometers (about 27 miles) according to NEDC testing. Expect the range to be slightly lower in EPA ratings. A 3.6-kW on-board charger comes standard and can fully recharge the battery in 7.8 hours when plugged into a 230V connection. The optional 7.2 kW onboard charger drops the recharge time to 2.3 hours when plugged into a 230V connection. There are four drive modes that are exclusive to the Cayenne E-Hybrid E-Power: Runs on electric power only until the battery is depleted E-Hold: Keeps the current state of the battery's charge intact until the driver decides to use it E-Charge: Gas engine produces more power to help charge the battery Hybrid Auto: Combines various amounts of gas and electric power to maximize efficiency The only differences between the Cayenne E-Hybrid and regular Cayenne are the E-Hybrid badges, an extra door for the charging point, and Acid Green brake calipers. It will be awhile before the Cayenne E-Hybrid arrives in the U.S. Porsche says the model will arrive early next year with a base price of $80,950 - includes a $1,050 destination charge. Source: Porsche 2019 Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid Plugs in and Boosts Performance Newest Porsche brings ‘E-performance’ option to Cayenne line-up 3.0L mono-turbo V6 and electric motor create 455 hp, 516 lb-ft of torque 14.1 kWh lithium ion battery pack offers up to 44 kilometers of EV range (NEDC) 0-60: 4.7 seconds (0.7 seconds quicker than previous generation) Porsche First: 22-inch wheels Available in early 2019 with a starting MSRP of $79,900 Atlanta, Georgia. Premiering today, the 2019 Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid solidifies its place in the lineup while making significant advancements over both the standard Cayenne and the preceding Cayenne S E-Hybrid it replaces. Those advantages include more power, quicker acceleration, a faster top speed, and increased electric-only range. The Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid uses the same three-liter mono-turbo V6 as the Cayenne, but significantly increases total horsepower and torque by integrating an electric motor. The latest Porsche “E-performance” model adopts the same hybrid boost strategy as the 918 Spyder super sports car. By leveraging the instantaneous torque of the electric motor and the power of a turbocharged V6 gasoline engine, the Cayenne E-Hybrid has an especially broad power band that improves its acceleration capability. In addition to enhanced performance, the new 2019 Cayenne E-Hybrid also adds the Sport Chrono Package, Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM), and Auxiliary Cabin Conditioning to its list of standard equipment. In conjunction with the launch of the 2019 Cayenne E-Hybrid, Porsche will also introduce several new features to the broader Cayenne model line. They include massaging seats, a heated windshield, a head-up display, and for the first time in any Porsche, 22-inch wheels. Aesthetic changes specific to the Cayenne E-Hybrid are aligned with other current Porsche plug-in hybrid models. The visual distinctions are Acid Green brake calipers and matching outlines around all of the badges. Newest Porsche PHEV Powertrain The latest Porsche plug-in hybrid includes the third new hybrid powertrain from Porsche since 2017. It combines a three-liter mono-turbo V6 engine with 335 horsepower and 332 lb-ft of torque with an electric motor that creates 134 horsepower and 295 lb-ft of torque. The result is a total system output of 455 horsepower from 5,250 to 6,400 RPM and 516 lb-ft of torque from 1,000 to 3,750 RPM. Acceleration from zero to 60 MPH happens in 4.7 seconds (-0.7 seconds vs. Cayenne S E-Hybrid) on to a ¼ mile time of 13.3 seconds (-0.9 seconds vs. Cayenne S E-Hybrid) and a top track speed of 157 MPH (+6 MPH vs. Cayenne S E-Hybrid). Tiptronic S transmission and new hybrid module Porsche completely re-engineered the hybrid powertrain componentry at work in the Cayenne E-Hybrid as compared to the Cayenne S E-Hybrid of the previous generation. The hybrid module, which is positioned between the engine and eight-speed Tiptronic S transmission, consists of an electric motor and a separating clutch. In contrast to the previous electro-hydraulic system with a spindle actuator, the separating clutch is operated electromechanically for quicker reaction times. The new Tiptronic S transmission, which was developed for the third-generation Cayenne range, offers significantly faster, smoother, and more comfortable shifts. This also leads to a reduced interruption of tractive force while changing gears. As with other Cayenne models, the top track speed is reached in sixth gear, leaving the remaining two gears intentionally long for efficient cruising. Standard Porsche Traction Management all-wheel drive With standard Porsche Traction Management (PTM), the Cayenne E-Hybrid has an active hang-on all-wheel drive system with an electronically regulated, map-controlled multiplate clutch. With its broad range of torque distribution, the system offers clear benefits in terms of driving dynamics, agility, traction control and off-road capabilities. Porsche Active Suspension Management (PASM) is included as standard equipment, though customers may upgrade to the same three-chamber air suspension system that is offered in the rest of the Cayenne lineup. Drive Modes in Detail As with other Porsche E-performance models, the Cayenne E-Hybrid shares a boost strategy with the 918 Spyder. By offering a wide range of drive modes, the powertrain is able to meet a wide range of specific needs ranging from all-electric motoring to high performance driving. The Sport Chrono Package, including a mode switch integrated into the steering wheel, forms part of the standard equipment on the Cayenne E-Hybrid. The mode switch and the Porsche Communication Management system are used to select the various driving modes. These include the familiar “Sport” and “Sport Plus” modes from the other Cayenne models equipped with the Sport Chrono Package, while the Cayenne E-Hybrid also adds four hybrid-specific modes: “E-Power”, “Hybrid Auto”, “E-Hold” and “E-Charge”. E-Power: In “E-Power” mode, the Cayenne E-Hybrid drives up to 44 kilometers, based on the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC), on electricity alone. Hybrid Auto: The “Hybrid Auto” mode is a completely new development. When this mode is selected, the Cayenne changes and combines the drive sources automatically for ultimate efficiency. E-Hold: The “E-Hold” mode allows drivers to conserve the current state of charge so they can later switch to electric (and therefore zero-emissions) mode in an environmental zone at their destination, for example. E-Charge: In “E-Charge” mode, the gasoline engine generates more power than is needed to move the car. The excess energy is channeled into the battery for later use. Sport and Sport Plus: The highest level of drive performance is made available in the “Sport” and “Sport Plus” modes. The V6 is active continuously in these modes. In “Sport” mode, the battery charge is always maintained at a minimum level to ensure that sufficient boost reserve capacity is available when needed. “Sport Plus” mode is all about maximum performance. In addition, the battery is charged as quickly as possible to ensure maximum performance. Battery power: plugging in and taking off Power is stored in a 14.1 kWh battery pack housed in the rear of the chassis beneath the load floor. While running on electricity alone, the Cayenne E-Hybrid can travel up to 83 miles per hour and up to 44 kilometers (NEDC). EPA fuel economy figures and electric range are unannounced at this time. Battery capacity of the Cayenne E-Hybrid increases by roughly 30 percent to 14.1 kWh when compared to the preceding model. The liquid-cooled battery consists of eight modules with 13 prismatic lithium ion cells each. The packaging size of this battery pack is the same as the battery used in the previous Cayenne S E-Hybrid, but it has improved energy density. Using a 230-volt, 32 amp connection and the optional 7.2 kW onboard charger, it is possible to recharge a fully depleted battery in 2.3 hours. Using a 230-volt connection with 10 amps and the standard 3.6 kW on-board charger, replenishing a fully depleted battery requires 7.8 hours. In both cases, the recharging process is quicker with the new Cayenne E-Hybrid than in prior models. The charging process is controllable either via Porsche Communication Management (PCM) or remotely when using the Porsche Connect app. With an enabled smartphone, owners gain remote access to climate controls, and charge monitoring. All of these features are included as standard equipment and function even when the ignition switch is turned off. Porsche Connect can also be used to find and filter charging stations and set them as a navigation destination. Mirroring the subtle aesthetic hybrid indicators on the exterior, the cabin features Acid Green needles on the Sport Chrono dial and the tachometer as well as hybrid-specific displays in the gauge cluster and within the PCM screen. The displays offer information about the state of charge, electricity consumption and hybrid-specific drive mode selections. Porsche is offering a head-up display for the first time. The full-color projection is customizable, height-adjustable, and it puts key information including driving speed, engine speed, driving mode, and navigation information and the current drive mode within the driver’s direct line of sight. Models equipped with the Sport Chrono package – such as the Cayenne E-Hybrid – can see information relevant to the added performance capability including lap times and cornering g forces. Models equipped with the Off Road package are able to display similarly relevant information including hillside gradients, steer angle, a compass, and hill descent control speeds. Starting with the 2019 Cayenne E-Hybrid, Porsche InnoDrive will also be available. As a step beyond adaptive cruise control, this system combines already existent traffic sensing systems with onboard map data. The result is a vehicle that can “look” 1.8 miles ahead to select gearing intelligently, and that can compute when best to coast and the best balance between the gasoline and electric portions of the powertrain based on upcoming corners and changes in grade. The system is also capable of recognizing speed limits and adjusting vehicle velocity in cases where temporary speed restrictions are in place. Market launch and pricing The new Cayenne E-Hybrid is expected to begin arriving at U.S. dealers in early 2019 with a base MSRP of $79,900 excluding options and the $1,050 delivery, processing and handling fee. Previous Page Next Page
  4. Buick is expanding their electrified options in China with the introduction of the Velite 6 plug-in hybrid and electric. They'll join the the Buick Velite 5 - a rebadged Chevrolet Volt. The design is interesting to say in the least with a fair number of creases and a blacked-out rear pillar on this hatchback body. Arriving first is the plug-in hybrid which is comprised of a 1.5L four-cylinder, two AC permanent-magnet synchronous motors, and lithium-ion battery pack. With a full tank of gas and fully charged battery, Buick estimates a range of 700 kilometers (about 435 miles). Not much is known about the electric variant, aside from Buick saying the model "will adopt a new-generation pure electric drive system to offer customers a smooth, quiet and natural driving experience." The electric variant will arrive next year. Both Velite 6 models will come with Buick's new eConnect cloud connectivity system. Different drivers can setup their own accounts to personalize settings for navigation, audio, and internet use. eConnect will also provide real-time intergration of WeChat, a Chinese social media service. Owners can use their smartphone as the key for the Velite 6. Source: Buick Buick VELITE 6 Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle and Enspire All-Electric Concept SUV Make Global Debut in China WUZHEN – The Buick VELITE 6 plug-in hybrid electric vehicle and the Buick Enspire all-electric concept SUV made their global debut this evening at a launch event in the scenic Chinese city of Wuzhen, Zhejiang. Buick also announced that the VELITE 6 plug-in hybrid electric vehicle will be launched this year and its sibling, the VELITE 6 electric vehicle, will be introduced in China at a later date. Buick VELITE 6 Buick is focused on electrification, connectivity, intelligence and sharing in line with its Buick Blue new energy vehicle strategy. The VELITE 6 represents the latest application of this strategy. The two VELITE 6 models leverage electrification and connectivity technology from SAIC-GM’s parent companies, including Buick’s newest electric propulsion technology and connectivity technology. They are based on the VELITE Concept new energy vehicle that was unveiled in November 2016. The VELITE 6 has a dynamic posture coupled with a wide stance. The modern, streamlined shape aptly represents the innovative exterior styling that matches the new nameplate’s exciting technological character. The high-performance propulsion system of the VELITE 6 plug-in hybrid electric vehicle is composed of an EVT electronically controlled variable transmission, two AC permanent-magnet synchronous motors with a high-performance lithium-ion battery, and a 1.5L naturally aspirated engine especially tuned for hybrid vehicles. The motors and engine efficiently optimize power in different driving modes – such as the hybrid-driven mode of the motor and the engine, the single-driven mode of the motor, and the single-driven mode of the engine. It has a range of 700 km and combined fuel consumption of 1.4 liters/100 km. The new-generation modular high-performance ternary lithium-ion battery pack will be assembled at the new state-of-the-art SAIC-GM Power Battery Development Center in Shanghai. The battery incorporates leading battery heat management technology, providing independent and uniform temperature control of each battery unit via liquid cooling. This will ensure a longer life cycle and more stable performance. The VELITE 6 electric vehicle will adopt a new-generation pure electric drive system to offer customers a smooth, quiet and natural driving experience. The flexible and open cloud-based Buick eConnect technology in both models enables cutting-edge services and over-the-air update capability. With exclusive accounts, users can personalize their settings for OnStar, navigation, internet use and more. Music and destinations can be sent to the car display screen via WeChat in real time, for one-button navigation and listening. Users can also directly receive information about their vehicles’ condition and recommended maintenance. VELITE 6 users’ smartphones serve as a virtual key to enter and start the vehicle. They can authorize others to use their vehicles through their phones as well. Additional functions and new features will continuously be added to improve the user experience.
  5. Lexus offers two powertains for the LS; a twin-turbo V6 producing 415 horsepower and a hybrid system featuring a 3.5L V6 that makes 354 horsepower. But Lexus is considering adding more powertains to their flagship sedan. Toshio Asahi, chief engineer for the LS told Australian outlet GoAuto that all powertrain options including a plug-in hybrid, hydrogen, and electric were “all on the table” for the current model. The most likely reason for this is competitors such as BMW and Mercedes-Benz have plug-in hybrid models of their flagship sedans and are working on new electric models. There is also the elephant in the room known as the Tesla Model S. Hydrogen isn't that much a surprise. Parent company Toyota has been pushing hydrogen for a number of years. But the lack of an extensive hydrogen infrastructure has limited its appeal and caused Toyota to put more focus on electrics. It should be noted that the LF-FC concept shown in 2015 was a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle. On the electric front, Toyota has been working on solid-state batteries that promise more range and quicker charging. Plans are to have batteries go into production beginning in 2022. Asahi also mentioned that engineers are looking into improving the current hybrid powertrain - possibly adding more power. Source: GoAuto
  6. The next-generation Porsche 911 will offer a plug-in hybrid variant and comments made the CEO hint it could be the most powerful 911 ever. “The 911 plug-in must be a very strong performing car. It will be the most powerful 911 we’ve ever had; 700bhp might be possible," Porsche CEO Oliver Blume told Autocar. It should be noted that Porsche already has a 911 that produces 700 horsepower, the GT2 RS. To pull this off, the plug-in hybrid needs a powerful electric motor. Luckily, they have one in the Panamera 4 E-Hybrid which produces 134 horsepower. The gas engine would likely be a turbocharged flat-six. Blume says there would be a button that provides "the electric punch". The 911 plug-in would draw on knowledge from the 918 Spyder and Panamera hybrids, but also come with its own set of technologies. The plug-in variant is expected to launch “a couple years” after the new 911. Considering the next-generation 992 will be debuting at the Paris Motor Show later this year, expect to see it either 2020 or 2021. Source: Autocar
  7. It seems we have been talking about Bentley's first plug-in hybrid for a number of years. But on the eve of the Geneva Motor Show, Bentley finally revealed the 2019 Bentayga plug-in hybrid. Instead of using a turbo V8 or W12, the plug-in utilizes a turbocharged 3.0L V6 engine paired with an electric motor. Bentley isn't revealing power figures or how big the battery is. but they do reveal the Bentayga can travel up to 31 miles on a full charge (based on the European testing cycle). There will be three driving modes specific to the hybrid - EV Drive, Hybrid, and Hold. When it comes to recharging the Bentayga plug-in hybrid, Bentley says it will take 2.5 hours when plugged into a charger or 7.5 hours when plugged into a socket. There are small differences between the plug-in hybrid and the gas variants. The charging port mirrors the location of fuel filler door on the other side. There are also copper-colored badges on the doors and tailgate. The order books for the Bentayga plug-in hybrid open up in select markets later this year. Source: Bentley Press Release is on Page 2 SERENITY THROUGH TECHNOLOGY: THE PIONEERING BENTLEY BENTAYGA HYBRID World’s first luxury hybrid Serene driving experience utilises future-focussed technology Bentley’s first step towards electrification Advanced electric motor combines with new V6 petrol engine Battery recharged in 2.5 hrs (Crewe, 5 March 2018) Bentley is today announcing full details of the world’s first luxury hybrid model. The Bentayga Hybrid represents Bentley’s first step towards full electrification, combining the serenity of silent motoring with exquisite comfort and effortless performance. Offering the best of both worlds, the new plug-in hybrid model combines an advanced electric motor with a powerful and efficient new-generation V6 petrol engine. The hybrid version of the world’s most luxurious SUV will be the company’s most efficient model ever with CO2 emissions of 75 g/km (NEDC). The Bentayga Hybrid feels and rides like a true Bentley, providing the refinement, effortless performance and exquisitely tranquil cabin environment for which the luxury British brand is famed. It represents the future of luxury mobility; an oasis of calm and tranquillity in the city and beyond. Adrian Hallmark, new Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Bentley Motors, said: “The Bentayga Hybrid is our first step on the road to electrification, combining traditional Bentley values with the very latest technologies. It gives customers the best of both worlds – engaging, effortless performance on the open road and silent, emission-free driving in the city, which will become increasingly important with the ever-changing regulations around the world. “Following Bentley tradition, the Bentayga Hybrid pioneers a new automotive sector – the luxury hybrid – and sets Bentley on the path towards a sustainable electrified future.” Bentayga Hybrid is not yet available to order. It will become available to order in selected markets from the second half of 2018. Intelligent, Experience-Enhancing Technology At the heart of the Bentayga Hybrid are two power sources – a highly efficient electric motor and a new turbocharged 3.0-litre V6 petrol engine. The E Motor acts as both an electric motor and a generator to offer a seamless driving experience and guaranteeing maximum electric-only range. The Hybrid adds a new dimension to the existing range of luxury Bentayga models. It features all the flexibility associated with the W12, V8 Diesel and V8 derivatives, with the same sure-footed permanent four-wheel drive and four on-road modes – Sport, Bentley, Comfort and Custom. The Automatic Start-Stop switch is replaced with a control for the three E Modes – EV Drive, Hybrid Mode and Hold Mode. These will enable the driver to manage battery usage during a journey. The Bentayga Hybrid requires new and different information to be relayed to the driver. As a result, a revised infotainment screen and Driver’s Information Panel with E Motion information have been designed to provide details on performance, consumption and energy source. The traditional tachometer that displays engine speed is replaced with a dial showing when the car is operating in pure EV Drive, or engine speed if the combustion engine is operating. A battery status dial replaces the coolant temperature gauge. The infotainment screen can display energy flow in each of the three E Modes, showing whether the vehicle is being powered by energy supplied by the battery, or the combustion engine – or whether energy is flowing back to the battery in order to charge it. To maximise efficiency, the vehicle uses satellite navigation information to calculate the best usage of electric motor and engine for every journey. Inputting a destination into the navigation system will command the car to automatically engage the correct E Mode for each part of the journey, constantly calculating the most efficient use of battery charge and storing electrical energy for sections of the journey where it is most useful – such as when arriving in the city. The system will reduce on-board charge to zero just as the vehicle reaches its destination, maximising overall efficiency. A number of Hybrid-specific functions will also be introduced to the latest Connected Car ‘MyBentley3’ services, including My Battery Charge, My Cabin Comfort, and My Car Status, operated via a smartphone app. Bentley has prioritised the charging experience to ensure that owning a Bentayga Hybrid is as easy as owning a conventional car. Controllable remotely from a Smartphone, or in-person via the on-board charging point, the charging status and programming will be visible on the MMI drivers’ screen and on the user’s smartphone via an app. Other unique features include E-Charging, where the app will list nearby or relevant charging stations (based on your search criteria), and give you the option to set them as destinations on the car navigation system; and My Cabin Comfort which allows you to set the car to heat (or cool) itself so that the cabin is at the optimum temperature when the door is opened. The Bentayga Hybrid’s Vehicle Charge Point is located on the opposite side to the normal fuel filler. From here, the car can be connected to either a domestic power supply, or a public charger point. The rear luggage compartment will hold two bespoke bags containing the necessary cables to connect the car to either. With an impressive electric range of over 31 miles (50 km) in the NEDC cycle, a full charge of the battery from a domestic household socket will take 7.5 hours. However, customers with an industrial connection installed at home can reduce the charge time to just 2.5 hours. Timeless Bentley by Starck Power Dock Bentley has collaborated with renowned designer, Philippe Starck, to create a concept for a highly desirable recharging unit for Bentayga Hybrid customers – the Power Dock. The statement piece showcases the exquisite attention to detail you would expect from both Bentley and Starck, using sustainable and elegant materials. The stylish surround is formed from pressed eco-linen with bio-sourced thermosetting resin, while the domed frontage is fashioned using a hot-pressure aluminium casting. The minimal and elegant Power Dock is designed to keep charging cables neat and safe at home. Furthermore, it brings a luxurious touch to the act of hybrid recharging, acting as a functional piece of art that will enhance any home. Starck’s elegant creation – with its tactile surfaces and inviting aesthetic – will encourage Bentayga Hybrid customers to plug-in whenever they are at home, thus ensuring each journey begins with the maximum electric-only range. Innovative Features and Advanced Technologies A suite of driver assistance systems and infotainment features, designed to enhance safety, comfort and convenience make the Bentayga Hybrid an innovative and advanced SUV. Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) and Traffic Assist enable the driver to maintain a time gap to the vehicle in front. Predictive ACC uses the navigation data, sensors and cameras to predict upcoming corners, city boundaries and speed-limit changes and can then modify the vehicle speed accordingly, improving both comfort and fuel economy. In urban environments, there are a number of driver aids available on the Bentayga Hybrid. These systems – such as Traffic Sign Recognition, which detects a wide variety of traffic signs and displays information to the driver; Rear Crossing Traffic Warning, which uses radar technology to detect crossing traffic when reversing out of a parking space; and Top View, a system which uses four cameras to display an overall picture of the vehicle’s surroundings – combine to enhance everyday usability. Park Assist is also available – a system that detects suitable parking spaces (both parallel and perpendicular) before autonomous steering takes over to support parking manoeuvres, even in narrow and tricky spaces. Other innovative systems available include Electronic Night Vision, which uses infra-red technology to identify potential obstacles ahead, and a Head-Up Display, which reduces driver distraction and increases safety. The Bentayga’s 8” touch screen infotainment system boasts class-leading navigation technology, a 60GB hard drive, and a choice of up to 30 languages. Rear seat passengers benefit from the Bentley Entertainment Tablet – a removable 10.2” Android device with 4G, WiFi and Bluetooth for effortless, high-speed on-board connectivity. Customers can choose between three different sound systems for the Bentayga Hybrid: Bentley Standard Audio, Bentley Signature Audio and Naim for Bentley Premium Audio. The latter is the most powerful system in the segment, with 1,950 watts, a network of 18 speakers and super-tweeters for unrivalled recreation of the highest audio frequencies. Sculptural Form, Sharp Lines and Elegant Execution The Bentayga Hybrid’s wheel arches, fenders and bonnet deliver a balance between sportiness and SUV presence. The ultra-sharp Bentley power line and muscular rear haunch display a taut tension in side profile, as part of the largest single-piece aluminium pressing in the automotive world. Trademark Bentley features such as the large matrix grille and B-shaped wing vents afford the Bentayga a modern, dynamic elegance. At the rear, within the segmented tail lights, a ‘B’-shaped illumination graphic is incorporated that affords the Bentayga an instantly recognisable and striking night-time signature. Bentley’s most efficient model ever will be identifiable thanks to a number of elegant exterior styling cues. Copper-coloured ‘Hybrid’ badging on the lower front doors and tailgate – and a copper finish to the wheel centres and Bentley badges – highlight the electric performance potential of the Bentayga’s new powertrain. Additionally, the insert on the tread plates will also read ‘Hybrid’. The World’s Finest Cabin, Handcrafted at the Home of Bentley Step inside the Bentayga Hybrid and you find the finest automotive interior in the world, with handcrafted wood and leather throughout – engineered with precision to deliver absolute perfection. The attention to detail in metal, wood and leather is the epitome of modern British luxury, and is only achievable thanks to the exceptional skill of the workforce in Crewe. The Bentayga’s cockpit sets new standards for both luxury and precision, with meticulous tolerances between the exquisite veneered woods and metal elements. The dashboard takes the iconic Bentley ‘wing’ design as its inspiration, with the beautifully finished surfaces flowing gracefully from door to door over the top of the instrument binnacles, down under the centre console and back up around the passenger side fascia and foot well. The hand-selected veneers form pure and elegant surfaces throughout the cabin, and each of the 15 pieces are shaped by Bentley’s artisans from a choice of seven different veneers, and finished with trademark Bentley attention to detail. Highly polished, handcrafted metal elements adorn the dashboard, centre console and doors. Trademark Bentley knurling on the drive mode selector, gear knob, iconic bulls-eye vents and organ pulls adds sophistication and tactile refinement. Sumptuous front seats, individually handcrafted in Crewe and featuring 22-way adjustment including adjustable cushion and backrest bolsters, provide superb support and comfort for all conditions. This cosseted feeling is further enhanced with a six-programme massage system, seat heating and ventilation. Whether selected in four- or five-seat configuration, all of the leather seats in the Bentayga are available with contrast stitching and a quilted diamond design applied to the ‘shoulders’ and bolsters, echoing the design of a finely tailored British hunting jacket. Bentley specialists individually select only the finest bull hides, all of which are sourced from cool European climates, naturally tanned and never over-printed. Customers have the choice of 15 colours, in three duo-tone and one single mono-tone colour split. The four-seat configuration makes the ultimate statement in design, comfort and luxury. The two individual rear seats adjust in 18 different ways and include massage and ventilation functions as well as footrests. The veneered rear console hides additional functionality such as cup holders, generous storage areas and USB charging sockets. The opulent feeling is completed by the fixed back, dividing the interior cabin from the boot. Also trimmed in the signature diamond quilting and including a ski-hatch, it creates an enclosed rear cabin space that sets new standards in the SUV sector. The full-length panoramic sunroof with acoustic interlayers allows ample natural sunlight to highlight the surfaces and detailing.
  8. Subaru will be launching their first plug-in hybrid for the U.S. later this year and plans on offering a full electric vehicle in 2021. But to pull both of these off, Subaru is enlisting various automakers to help. Takeshi Tachimori, Subaru's chief technical officer said they are drawing heavily on partnerships with Daihatsu, Hino, Mazda, Suzuki, and Toyota to help with the upcoming plug-in hybrid and EV. The reason for using the expertise of other automakers is Subaru's r&d budget doesn't stretch to include in-house development of these models. "We can't engage in a large-scale development," he told Automotive News. As more stringent emission regulations come into effect around the world, Subaru is counting on this plan to meet them. Tachimori also talked about the upcoming plug-in hybrid. While he wouldn't reveal what model it will be based on, he did say the model would use the powertrain from the Toyota Prius Prime with a twist: the gas engine will be one of Subaru's boxer engines. "For our plug-in hybrid to be introduced this year, we have used Toyota's technologies as much as possible," said Tachimori. The plug-in hybrid will be sold initially in states that have adopted California's zero-emission vehicle regulations. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  9. Following a few months after the debut of the refreshed Sonata, Hyundai used the Chicago Auto Show to debut the 2018 Sonata Hybrid and Plug-In Hybrid. Like the gas counterpart, the hybrid models feature new front and rear end styling, revised wheel designs (16 and 17-inches), and LED headlights. The interior is mostly the same as the standard model aside from a different instrument cluster and additional screens pertaining to hybrid system for the infotainment system. Qi wireless charging for smartphones is available as an option. Under the hoods of the Sonata Hybrid and Plug-In Hybrid is a 2.0L direct-injected four-cylinder producing 154 horsepower and 140 pound-feet of torque. This is matched with an electric motor in the six-speed automatic transmission - 35kW for the hybrid and 50 kW for the plug-in. Total output stands at 193 horsepower for the hybrid and 202 hp for the plug-in. The Hybrid features a 1.76 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack, while the Plug-In boasts a larger 9.8 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack. Hyundai says the Sonata Hybrid SE is estimated to return 39 City/45 Highway/42 Combined and have a total range of more than 650 miles - about the length from Detroit to Chicago and back. The Plug-In has an estimated electric-only range of 27 miles and is able to be recharged in less than 3 hours when plugged into a level 2 charger. The Sonata Hybrid arrives sometime in the first quarter and the Plug-In will follow in the second quarter. Source: Hyundai Press Release is on Page 2 Hyundai Reveals 2018 Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid Models at Chicago Auto Show Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid models receive extensive exterior redesign New instrument panel center stack, steering and infotainment features wheel New available safety features include Automatic Emergency Braking and Lane Keep Assist Steering and suspension refined for improved ride and handling CHICAGO, Feb. 8, 2018 – Hyundai today unveiled its redesigned 2018 Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid models at the Chicago Auto Show, the largest in the U.S. 2018 Sonata Hybrid/Plug-in Hybrid Highlights New front/rear fascia design, grille, hood, front fenders, rear deck lid, headlights/taillights New 16-inch and 17-inch eco-spoke wheel designs New LED headlights with cornering Dynamic Bending Light (DBL) function New instrument panel center stack, steering wheel and available heated steering wheel New, stiffer front anti-roll bar and recalibrated steering assistance feel New, more rigid rear-trailing-arm design with retuned bushings for responsiveness Standard Blind-spot detection with Rear Cross-traffic Alert and Lane Change Assist Newly available Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) and Lane Keep Assist New, upgraded audio/video navigation system with new Bird’s Eye View map perspective New HERE HD Traffic (Real-time Traffic Service – non-paid subscription) Qi wireless phone charging on navigation-equipped models New rear USB charging port New three-year complimentary Blue Link Connected Car, Remote and Guidance on Blue Link-equipped models (Guidance requires navigation) Repackaged standard and available content for outstanding customer value The new Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid feature a comprehensive exterior and interior redesign, safety, suspension and new and improved infotainment and connectivity features. The 2018 Hybrid and Plug-in will be produced in Asan, Korea, with Hybrid availability in the first quarter of 2018 and Plug-in availability in the second quarter of 2018. “Our new 2018 Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in models add appeal in every area, from exterior to interior design, handling, steering, ride comfort, safety and infotainment,” said Mike O’Brien, vice president of Product, Corporate and Digital Planning at Hyundai Motor America. “When combined with Hyundai’s outstanding value and efficiency, the new Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in are sure to attract even more eco-focused buyers.” The new Sonata exterior design conveys a new appearance from every vantage point, including new wheel designs. On the inside, a new instrument panel center stack, steering wheel, available audio/video navigation system, wireless phone charging and rear USB charge port further enhance the interior experience. HYBRID POWERTRAIN The heart of the 2018 Sonata Hybrid is a 2.0-liter Nu GDI four-cylinder engine coupled with a six-speed automatic transmission that houses a powerful 38 kW electric motor and clutch where the torque converter would normally be found. Sonata Hybrid’s Transmission-Mounted Electrical Device (TMED) delivers the same responsive, engaging driving characteristics Sonata owners expect while improving fuel economy through the use of a larger electric motor. This innovative transmission uses an electric oil pump, which helps improve efficiency. It is possible for Sonata Hybrid to operate solely on electric power at speeds up to 75 mph by decoupling the gasoline engine from the rest of the drivetrain. Sonata Hybrid’s Nu engine produces 154 horsepower and 140 lb. ft. of torque. The electric motor produces 38 kW (51 horsepower) and 151 lb. ft. of torque. Hybrid system net power is 193 horsepower at 6,000 rpm. Sonata Hybrid SE has preliminary internal estimates of 39 mpg in the city, 45 mpg on the highway and 42 mpg combined. The Sonata Hybrid’s total range is estimated at more than 650 miles under typical driving conditions. The lithium-ion polymer battery pack capacity is 1.76 kWh and the battery pack fits under the trunk floor, which allows for a flat trunk floor as well as available 60/40 split-folding rear seats. Sonata Hybrid offers 13.3 cu. ft. of cargo volume, thanks to the compact battery pack dimensions and efficient design. Locating the battery pack beneath the trunk floor helps improve cargo volume and total interior volume with 106.1 cu. ft., the most in its segment. PLUG-IN HYBRID POWERTRAIN Although the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid is very technologically advanced, it drives similarly to the regular Sonata Hybrid, but with the additional benefit of extended all-electric range. A 9.8 kWh lithium-ion polymer battery pack, more than five times larger than the Sonata Hybrid’s battery, gives the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid an EPA-estimated all-electric range of up to 27 miles, and it can recharge in less than three hours with a level-two charger. It offers the best of both worlds by providing the power delivery of a hybrid gasoline engine, perfect for long trips, with the additional benefit of environmentally-friendly all-electric range for commuting. As a result, many consumers will be able to complete their daily commute without using a single drop of fuel, and total estimated range is an impressive 590 miles. The Sonata Plug-in Hybrid uses a six-speed automatic transmission with Hyundai’s Transmission-Mounted Electrical Device (TMED), a 50 kW electric motor, in place of a torque converter. The 50 kW electric motor is 32 percent more powerful than the motor used in Sonata Hybrid and allows EV operation at higher engine load and speed. A 2.0-liter Nu four-cylinder GDI engine coupled with the electric motor allows the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid to operate just like the Sonata Hybrid once the onboard battery charge is depleted. The Sonata Plug-in Nu engine produces 154 horsepower and 140 lb. ft. of torque and the total system output is 202 horsepower at 6,000 rpm. SAFETY FEATURES 2018 Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in come standard with seven airbags, including a driver’s knee airbag. Electronic Stability Control, Vehicle Stability Management, Traction Control, ABS and a Tire Pressure Monitoring System with individual tire pressure display and a rearview camera are also standard. LED headlamps are optional and LED taillights and DRLs are standard. Hyundai engineers implemented many active safety technologies for the Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in to assist drivers and help prevent accidents. No longer reserved for luxury cars, advanced safety technologies, such as Blind Spot Detection with Rear Cross Traffic Alert is standard. Available advanced safety features include Automatic Emergency Braking, Lane Keep Assist and Automatic High Beam Assist. The Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in advanced Blind Spot Detection system is designed to alert drivers of an approaching vehicle in the next lane if the turn signal is activated. Drivers are first alerted of a vehicle in the blind spot by warning lights in the side mirrors. When the turn signal is activated, the Lane Change Assist system determines the closing speed of any vehicle in the adjacent lane to determine if the lane change is safe. If the system determines the vehicle in the other lane is closing too quickly, it sounds an audible alarm to warn the driver that the lane change is unsafe. The Lane Keep Assist uses a forward-facing camera to recognize lane markers. If the system detects the vehicle is headed outside the lane markers, a warning on the instrument cluster illuminates and an audible sound alerts the driver. Rear Cross-traffic Alert (RCTA) is another standard feature that uses advanced technologies from the Blind Spot Detection system. RCTA scans the areas to each side of the Sonata when drivers are backing out of parking spaces. If the system detects another vehicle is approaching from the side, the Sonata driver is given an audible alert. This system is another tool that helps Sonata drivers benefit from active safety technologies. CONVENIENCE FEATURES The Sonata Hybrid delivers the convenience technology one would expect in a luxury vehicle in an incredibly efficient mid-size hybrid sedan. Hyundai’s Hands-free Smart Trunk is available as well as an electronic parking brake with automatic vehicle hold, an Integrated Memory System for driver’s seat and side mirrors, segment-exclusive rear window sunshades, ventilated front seats, power front seats with adjustable driver lumbar support and Smart Cruise Control featuring stop/start capability. MULTIMEDIA TECHNOLOGY Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in offer an eight-inch color touchscreen navigation system with Apple CarPlay® and Android Auto® smartphone integration, iPod®/USB and auxiliary inputs, SiriusXM® satellite radio and Bluetooth® phone connectivity with phonebook transfer and voice-recognition. Available upgrades include a nine-speaker Infinity premium audio system with subwoofer and external Infinity® amplifier. The available eight-inch navigation system offers a map and music split-screen display and the ability to record SiriusXM presets one to six. For 2018, this navigation system also adds Bird’s Eye View map perspective capability. Switching to a preset station in the middle of your favorite song won’t be an annoyance any longer; simply rewind up to 22 minutes to listen to the full song or catch up on sports broadcasts. SiriusXM Travel Link® provides access to traffic information, sports scores, weather, stock prices, fuel prices and local movie times. AERODYNAMICS Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in use the same functional design cues to improve the drag coefficient to an industry-leading 0.24 Cd. NEXT-GENERATION BLUE LINK® CONNECTED CAR SYSTEM Sonata Hybrid and Plug-in Blue Link-equipped models include three years of complimentary Blue Link services, with enhanced safety, diagnostic, remote and voice navigation services. Blue Link brings connectivity directly into the car with technologies like Remote Start with Climate Control, Remote Door Lock/Unlock, Car Finder, Enhanced Roadside Assistance, and Stolen Vehicle Recovery. Blue Link features can be accessed via buttons on the rearview mirror, the MyHyundai.com web portal, the MyHyundai with Blue Link smartphone app, the Amazon® Alexa Blue Link skill, and the Blue Link Google Assistant app. Some features can also be controlled via Android Wear™ and Apple Watch™ smartwatch apps. The latest release of the Blue Link smartphone app includes: Widgets for easy access to remote features Ability to send Point-of-Interest data to vehicle navigation system (if so equipped) Access to Blue Link notification settings More details on specific Blue Link-equipped vehicles available at www.hyundaibluelink.com. MYHYUNDAI with BLUE LINK® APP Owners can manage and monitor the Sonata Plug-In Hybrid remotely via the Blue Link smartphone app. With the app, owners can access real-time data from their Sonata Plug-in and perform specific commands like starting the engine and locking doors. Plus, users can search for points of interest using Google with voice or text and have the directions when they start their Sonata Plug-in. For Sonata Plug-in owners who will charge at their residence, one of the most useful features of the app is the ability to manage their Plug-in charging schedule. Owners are given vehicle charging options that they can select while in the car, but users can also manage them remotely via their smartphone. Immediate charge is the simplest option, as charging begins as soon as the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid is plugged-in. A distinctive instrument cluster provides Sonata Plug-in Hybrid drivers with additional information about the vehicle’s functions. A charge indicator is located on top of the dashboard to make it easy to see the state of charge from outside the vehicle. Individuals that have different electric rates at off-peak times may want to schedule the charge to reduce cost as well as reduce peak demand on the electricity grid. Users can do that with the new app based on time and date. For example, charging could be set to start at 10 p.m. on Wednesdays and Thursdays on a weekly basis. Connected Car Services: Remote Start with Climate Control and defroster Remote Lock/Unlock Vehicle Diagnostics/status Stolen Vehicle Recovery Car Finder Connected Plug-in Hybrid Charge Management Services: Start or stop charging Set-up charging schedule with days of the week and time Current battery level with real-time electric and fuel range Real-time fuel range Plug status (in/out) Charge status Time left until fully charged SONATA PLUG-IN AVAILABILITY AND TAX CREDITS The Sonata Plug-in Hybrid will be distributed in California, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island and Vermont, but customers in any of the other states can custom order the vehicle at their local Hyundai dealer. Sonata Plug-in Hybrid buyers are currently eligible for a $4,919 federal tax credit. These tax credits reduce the amount of federal tax the purchaser is liable for, making them much more valuable+ than tax deductions. In addition, the Sonata Plug-in Hybrid is eligible for HOV-lane access in certain states.
  10. Bentley has been talking about building a plug-in hybrid variant of their Bentayga SUV for quite some time and soon they'll be revealing it to the world. According to Automotive News Europe, Bentley will be debuting the plug-in hybrid variant at the Geneva Motor Show in March. It is thought that Bentley would use the same powertrain found in the Porsche Panamera E-Hybrid - a 2.9L twin-turbo V6 paired with 136 horsepower electric motor to produce a combined output of 462 horsepower. When fully charged, the E-Hybrid can travel up 30 miles on electric power alone. We're expecting the Bentayga to have a shorter range. The Plug-In Hybrid version of the Bentayga will go on sale in the second-half of 2018, giving Bentley three different engine options for the U.S. - a 4.0L twin-turbo V8 and 6.0L twin-turbo W12. Europe also gets the option of a V8 diesel. Source: Automotive News Europe (Subscription Required)
  11. Porsche seems to be going ahead on electrifying their iconic 911 sports car. Speaking with Automotive News, Porsche CEO Oliver Blume revealed that the company is working on a plug-in hybrid variant of the next-generation 911. "It will be very important for the 911 to have a plug-in hybrid," said Blume. The decision on whether to move forward with the project hasn't received final approval, but Blume said it's "my opinion that we will go for it." Blume's comments help clear the confusing mess of rumors from the past few years which said one minute that they were considering it and the next minute being taken off the table. Earlier this year, plans were dropped due to weight concerns of the batteries. The next-generation 911's platform has been designed to accommodate the batteries needed for the plug-in hybrid system. Currently, Porsche is planning to launch the plug-in hybrid 911 during midcycle refresh of the next-generation 911. With the launch of the next-generation 911 expected to take place in 2019, this could mean the 911 plug-in hybrid will debut in 2023. Why is Porsche waiting until the midcycle refresh? Blume said this would allow the company to get batteries that deliver more power and range. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  12. Chrysler isn’t the first, let alone the tenth automaker you would think of building a hybrid vehicle. Yet, they stunned the world last year as they introduced a plug-in hybrid version of the new Pacifica minivan. It currently holds the title of being the only full-size hybrid minivan sold in the world. On paper, the Pacifica Hybrid makes a good case for itself. Being able to travel up to 33 miles on electric power alone and returning a combined fuel economy figure of 83 MPGe. But how does it fare in the real world? The Pacifica Hybrid’s powertrain is comprised of a modified version of the 3.6L V6 that runs on the Atkinson cycle for improved efficiency; two electric motors and a 16-kW lithium-ion battery pack. Total output stands at 260 horsepower. Even though the Pacifica Hybrid is about 600 pounds more than the standard model, it doesn’t feel like it. The instant torque from the electric motors moves the van at a very brisk rate when leaving a stop. The gas engine will kick on when the battery is depleted or when more power is needed such as merging onto a highway. The transition between electric and hybrid power is barely noticeable. When the gas engine is on, it has more than enough power to get you moving on your way. An odd omission from the Pacifica Hybrid is being able to switch between electric and hybrid modes like you can do in other PHEVs. The van will automatically do it. This is a bit disappointing as some drivers would like to conserve battery when driving on a highway for example. The key numbers to be aware of are 33 miles and 84 MPGe on electric power, and 32 MPG when running on hybrid power. During my week, I was able to go about 34 miles on electric power alone and saw an average of 32 MPG for the week. Considering how big and heavy this van is, these numbers are quite impressive. Recharging times for the Pacifica Hybrid are 2 hours when plugged into a 240V outlet, or 16 hours for a 120V outlet. FCA is right on the money for the 120V time as it took around 16 hours for the van to be fully recharged. There isn’t any difference between how the Pacifica Hybrid rides and handles to the standard Pacifica. Both exhibit a smooth ride, no matter the road surface. Going around a corner is not a big deal as body roll is kept very much in check. There are only a few things that separate the Pacifica Hybrid from the standard model. Aside from the charging door, the hybrid gets a different grille and wheel design. While the Pacifica Hybrid is designed to carry families, you would think differently after sitting inside. Our Platinum tester was kitted out with leather on the seats, contrasting stitching, and an abundance of soft-touch materials. This interior gives certain luxury cars a run for their money. No matter where you’re sitting in the Pacifica Hybrid, there is plenty of head and legroom on offer. Comfort is also a major plus point as all of the seats provide excellent support for long trips. One downside to the hybrid powertrain is the loss of the Stow n’ Go seats for the second row. That space is taken up by the large battery pack. At least you can remove the second-row seats, but be prepared to have another person help you as they are heavy. At least the third-row seats do fold into the floor. There isn’t anything different with the 8.4-inch UConnect system aside from the usual screens you would expect on hybrid such as a power diagram. This system is very simple to operate, but the lack of Apple CarPlay and Android Auto leaves us slightly disappointed. Thankfully, this will be addressed with the 2018 model year as both become standard across the Pacifica lineup. We also had the chance to try out UConnect Access. This smartphone application allows you to check on how much charge is left on the battery, set up a charging schedule, trip information, remote lock and start, and vehicle location. While it is nice to have a key information within easy reach, it takes a long time for the application to pull it. We found on average that it took a good minute or two before updated information would arrive. For all of this tech, it comes at a price. The base Pacifica Hybrid Premium rings up at $41,995. Our Platinum tester came to $47,885 with an optional panoramic sunroof. That’s a lot of cash for a minivan, even one with a hybrid powertrain. But with the Platinum, you’re getting everything - navigation, rear-seat entertainment system, heated and ventilated front seats, and a ton of safety equipment. There is also the $7,500 federal tax credit and other incentives from various states that might sway some folks. But those only come into play when it comes time to do taxes. Disclaimer: Chrysler Provided the Pacifica Hybrid, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2017 Make: Chrysler Model: Pacifica Hybrid Trim: Platinum Engine: 3.6L V6 eHybrid System Driveline: eFlite EVT, Front-Wheel Drive Horsepower @ RPM: 260 @ N/A (Combined) Torque @ RPM: N/A Fuel Economy: Gas + Electric Combined, Gas Combined - 84 MPGe, 32 MPG Curb Weight: 4,987 lbs Location of Manufacture: Windsor, Ontario Base Price: $44,995 As Tested Price: $47,885 (Includes $1,095.00 Destination Charge) Options: Tri-Pane Panaromic Sunroof - $1,795
  13. Land Rover will be offering plug-in hybrid variants of Range Rover and Range Rover Sport next spring. This news comes from Jaguar Land Rover CEO Ralf Speth at the Frankfurt Motor Show last week. The models will pair JLR's 2.0L four-cylinder Ingenium gas engine with an electric motor. EV range is said to be about 30 miles when the battery is charged - although the range could be based on the European cycle. No power ratings were given for hybrid system. More details on the plug-in hybrid models will be announced next month. Land Rover has sold a hybrid version of the Range Rover for a few years in Europe, but it uses a diesel engine. Source: Motoring, Motor Trend
  14. It seems Volvo has started a trend when it announced back in July that all their models beginning in 2019 would be electrified in some form, i.e. hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and electric powertrains. Today, Jaguar Land Rover announced that it would be doing the same thing beginning in 2020. Much like Volvo, JLR's electrification plans include electrics, hybrids, and plug-in hybrids. Every new Jaguar Land Rover model line will be electrified from 2020, giving our customers even more choice. We will introduce a portfolio of electrified products across our model range, embracing fully electric, plug-in hybrid and mild hybrid vehicles. Our first fully electric performance SUV, the Jaguar I-PACE, goes on sale next year," said Jaguar Land Rover CEO Ralf Speth at the company's Tech Fest taking place at the University of the Arts London. Jaguar also used the event to show off a new, electrified retrofit of the E-Type. Called the E-Type Zero, Jaguar Land Rover Classic swapped the six-cylinder for a new electric powertrain. Jaguar says the E-Type Zero can hit 60 mph in 5.5 seconds and have a range of 170 miles. Source: Jaguar Land Rover Press Release is on Page 2 EVERY JAGUAR AND LAND ROVER LAUNCHED FROM 2020 WILL BE ELECTRIFIED From 2020 all new Jaguar Land Rover vehicles will be electrified. The company made the announcement at its inaugural Tech Fest, a series of debates and a free public exhibition about the future of mobility. Commitment to electrification demonstrated with new electric models from Jaguar’s past, present and future at inaugural Tech Fest event Past – iconic Jaguar E-type now electrified for the 21st century Present – all-new electric Jaguar I-PACE Concept, the SUV that combines a supercar silhouette with sports car performance, goes on sale next year Future – visionary FUTURE-TYPE virtual concept imagines autonomous, connected, electric and shared mobility for 2040 and beyond Jaguar Land Rover Tech Fest takes place at Central Saint Martins, University of the Arts London Free-to-enter festival open from Friday 8 September to Sunday 10 September From 2020 all new Jaguar Land Rover vehicles will be electrified. The company made the announcement at its inaugural Tech Fest, a series of debates and a free public exhibition about the future of mobility. "Every new Jaguar Land Rover model line will be electrified from 2020, giving our customers even more choice. We will introduce a portfolio of electrified products across our model range, embracing fully electric, plug-in hybrid and mild hybrid vehicles. Our first fully electric performance SUV, the Jaguar I-PACE, goes on sale next year," said Dr. Ralf Speth, Chief Executive Officer, Jaguar Land Rover. Jaguar E-type Zero The electric Jaguar E-type Zero future-proofs one of the world’s most famous cars. Acclaimed by Enzo Ferrari as “the most beautiful car in the world”, the E-type now combines breathtaking design with electric power for the first time. E-type Zero is based on a 1968 Series 1.5 Roadster and features a cutting-edge electric powertrain for 0-60mph in just 5.5sec. It was engineered by Jaguar Classic at the company’s new Classic Works in Warwickshire, UK. Jaguar I-PACE Concept With I-PACE we started with a clean sheet and engineered a bespoke, tailored, pure electric SUV from the ground up, creating a beautiful design with everyday practicality. It’s a performance SUV, it looks stunning, is great to drive and will be on sale next year. Jaguar FUTURE-TYPE The Jaguar FUTURE-TYPE is a vision for the car of 2040 and beyond. The fully autonomous virtual concept explores mobility for the connected world of tomorrow, where vehicles could be shared not owned. With Future Type’s interface you can separately access your different digital orbits of work, family or play, dialling up what you do need, and dialling down what you don’t. At its heart is Sayer – the intelligent steering wheel that will revolutionise the way you live your life. Named after Malcolm Sayer, designer of the E-type, this steering wheel doesn't just stay in your car – it lives in your home and becomes your trusted companion. Sayer is the first voice activated AI steering wheel that will be able to carry out hundreds of tasks. The advanced speech recognition software will allow it to answer your questions, connect you to the news, organise your travel and select your entertainment. Sayer knows what's in your fridge and can even order your shopping or a pizza. You will never run out of milk again. It will be your go-to device. It is not just the ‘key’ to your car, it’s your membership card for our on-demand service club. A club which offers either sole ownership or the option of sharing the car with others in your community. For our customers, driving is about much more than getting from A to B. It’s about living life from A to Z. You will always be able to experience the sheer thrill of driving with the option to take the wheel. But this is a steering wheel like never before.
  15. I’m one of the few people who actually like the current Toyota Prius - I named it one of my favorite vehicles last year. It offers excellent fuel economy and noticeable improvements to the interior and handling. So what happens when you add a plug to it? You end up with the Prius Prime which is much better than the last-generation Prius Plug-In and makes for an interesting alternative to Chevrolet Volt if you happen to be on a budget. The regular Prius was already a model that you either loved or hated the design. The Prime only exacerbates this as it comes with new front and rear styling to set it apart. The front end gets a new black treatment for the middle that makes it look like it is wearing a mask to hide its identity. A set of quad-LED headlights come from the Mirai and makes the Prime look futuristic. The back features a new tailgate design with what Toyota calls a “dual wave.” It may look ridiculous when put next to the standard Prius, but I dig it. One more thing about the rear tailgate; it happens to made out of carbon fiber to help reduce some weight out of the Prime. The weight loss is not really that impressive as the tailgate only drops 8 pounds from the curb weight. Move inside and the Prime is mostly similar to the Prius I drove last year with an abundance of soft-touch materials, color screens for the instrument cluster, and comfortable front seats. The key differences? You’ll only find seating for two in the back and cargo space is slightly smaller (19.8 vs. 24.6 cubic feet) due to the larger battery taking up some of the precious cargo space. One key item Toyota is proud of in the Prius Prime is an 11.6-inch, vertical touchscreen that controls many of the vehicle’s function such as navigation, audio, and climate control. But you may notice our test Prime doesn’t have it. That’s because the larger screen is only available on the Premium and Advanced models. The base Plus sticks with the 7-inch touchscreen with Entune. From reviews I have been reading about the Prime with the larger screen, it is a mess. The user interface is a bit of mess, performance is meh, and the screen washes out when sunlight hits it. The 7-inch system doesn’t have all of these issues - aside from the sunlight one. Entune may look a little bit dated, but the interface is easy to wrap your head around and performance is pretty snappy. The Prime’s powertrain is the same as the standard Prius; 1.8L Atkinson-Cycle four-cylinder engine and two electric motors/generators producing a total output of 121 horsepower and 105 pound-feet of torque. Where it differs is the battery. The Prime comes with a 95-cell, 8.8-kWh Lithium-ion battery pack. This allows for 25 miles of electric motoring - 14 miles more than the last-generation Prius Plug-In. In electric mode, the Prius Prime feels confident when leaving a stop as the electric motors provide that immediate thrust of power. This is a vehicle that will make other drivers question their thoughts about the Prius. When the Prime is put into the hybrid mode, it feels and goes like a slower Prius. A lot of this is due to extra weight brought on the larger battery - about 300 pounds. You will notice the vehicle taking a few ticks longer to get up speed, especially on hills or merging on to a freeway. How much range was I able to squeeze out of the Prime? I was able to travel between 24 to 27 miles on EV power. Average fuel economy landed around 75 mpg with mostly city driving. When I first got the Prius Prime, I had to plug it in to get the battery charged up. On a 120V outlet, it took 5 hours and 30 minutes to recharged - exactly the time listed by Toyota. If you have a 240V charger, a full recharge only takes 2 hours and 10 minutes on 240V When the battery is halfway depleted, it took about 2 hours and 30 minutes to fully recharge. The Prius was quite a shock when I drove it last year as it drove surprisingly well. It provided decent handling and the steering felt somewhat natural. The same is true for the Prime. You would think after four-generations of the Prius, Toyota would have finally figured out how to make the regenerative brakes feel like brakes in a standard car. But this isn’t the case. Like in the Prius I drove last year, the Prime exhibited brakes that felt numb and having to push further on the pedal to bring the vehicle to a stop. The Toyota Prius Prime is a huge improvement over the old the Prius Plug-In Hybrid as it offers a better EV range, short recharging time, and a much nicer interior. The exterior will put some people off and Toyota still needs to work on improving the Prius’ brakes. We have to address the elephant in the room, the Chevrolet Volt. The Volt does offer a longer range (53 miles), much better brakes, and a sharper exterior. The Prius Prime fights back with a larger interior, shorter recharging times, and low price. If I had the money, I would be picking up a Volt Premier as I think it is the slightly better vehicle. But if I only had $30,000 to spend and wanted something fuel efficient, the Prius Prime would be at the top of the list. Disclaimer: Toyota Provided the Prius Prime, Insurance, and One Tank of Gas Year: 2017 Make: Toyota Model: Prius Prime Trim: Plus Engine: 1.8L DOHC, VVT-i Atkinson Cycle Four-Cylinder, Two Electric Motors Driveline: Front-Wheel Drive, ECVT Horsepower @ RPM: 95 @ 5,200 (Gas), 71 @ 0 (Electric), 121 (Combined) Torque @ RPM: 105 @ 5,200 (Gas), 120 @ 0 (Electric) Fuel Economy: Electric + Gas, Hybrid City/Highway/Combined - 133 MPGe, 55/53/54 Curb Weight: 3,365 lbs Location of Manufacture: Aichi, Japan Base Price: $27,100 As Tested Price: $28,380 (Includes $885.00 Destination Charge) Options: Special Color (Hypersonic Red) - $595.00
  16. Almost a month ago, Volvo made the announcement that it will be spinning off Polestar into its own automaker focusing on high-performance electric vehicles. At the time, plans on products would be announced this fall. But Autocar has learned from a source about one of those projects. The first model is expected to be a coupe, sporting a plug-in hybrid powertrain with 600 horsepower. While the original announcement said the new brand would focus on electric vehicles, sources at Volvo and Polestar say the brand will also focus on high-performance plug-in hybrid powertrains. As we have reported previously, Polestar will share “technological and engineering” efforts with Volvo. This likely means Polestar's new models will use Volvo's modular platforms. Autocar says the coupe could debut this fall at the Frankfurt Motor Show. Source: Autocar
  17. Volvo made a stunning announcement this morning as it plans to equip all of their vehicles with an electric motor beginning in 2019. “This announcement marks the end of the solely combustion engine-powered car. Volvo Cars has stated that it plans to have sold a total of 1 million electrified cars by 2025. When we said it we meant it. This is how we are going to do it,” said Volvo CEO Hakan Samuelsson in a statement. Volvo is planning to launch five EVs between 2019 and 2021 - two of those coming from Polestar . They'll be complemented by a range of mild-hybrid with 48-volt electric systems and plug-in hybrid models. “This is about the customer. People increasingly demand electrified cars and we want to respond to our customers’ current and future needs. You can now pick and choose whichever electrified Volvo you wish,” said Samuelsson. Source: Volvo Press Release is on Page 2 Volvo Cars to go all electric Volvo Cars, the premium car maker, has announced that every Volvo it launches from 2019 will have an electric motor, marking the historic end of cars that only have an internal combustion engine (ICE) and placing electrification at the core of its future business. The announcement represents one of the most significant moves by any car maker to embrace electrification and highlights how over a century after the invention of the internal combustion engine electrification is paving the way for a new chapter in automotive history. “This is about the customer,” said Håkan Samuelsson, president and chief executive. “People increasingly demand electrified cars and we want to respond to our customers’ current and future needs. You can now pick and choose whichever electrified Volvo you wish.” Volvo Cars will introduce a portfolio of electrified cars across its model range, embracing fully electric cars, plug in hybrid cars and mild hybrid cars. It will launch five fully electric cars between 2019 and 2021, three of which will be Volvo models and two of which will be high performance electrified cars from Polestar, Volvo Cars’ performance car arm. Full details of these models will be announced at a later date. These five cars will be supplemented by a range of petrol and diesel plug in hybrid and mild hybrid 48 volt options on all models, representing one of the broadest electrified car offerings of any car maker. This means that there will in future be no Volvo cars without an electric motor, as pure ICE cars are gradually phased out and replaced by ICE cars that are enhanced with electrified options. “This announcement marks the end of the solely combustion engine-powered car,” said Mr Samuelsson. “Volvo Cars has stated that it plans to have sold a total of 1m electrified cars by 2025. When we said it we meant it. This is how we are going to do it.” The announcement underlines Volvo Cars’ commitment to minimising its environmental impact and making the cities of the future cleaner. Volvo Cars is focused on reducing the carbon emissions of both its products as well as its operations. It aims to have climate neutral manufacturing operations by 2025. The decision also follows this month’s announcement that Volvo Cars will turn Polestar into a new separately-branded electrified global high performance car company. Thomas Ingenlath, Senior Vice President Design at Volvo Cars, will lead Polestar as Chief Executive Officer.
  18. Porsche was planning to do a plug-in hybrid variant of the next-generation 911, but it seems those plans have been scrapped. August Achleitner, head of 718 and 911 development revealed to Car and Driver revealed that plug-in 911 project was canceled last year. Two issues ultimately brought the downfall to this project. First was the plug-in hybrid 911 wouldn't have the same driving dynamics as the standard 911 due to additional weight brought on by the hybrid components. Second is Porsche would not be able to make the same profit margins as they do on other 911 models. “In the end, the disadvantages outweighed the advantages,” said Achleitner. Source: Car and Driver
  19. Up until now, the Honda Clarity has only been able as a hydrogen fuel cell only sold in California since they have the infrastructure. But today at the New York Auto Show has expanded the Clarity lineup with the introduction of electric and plug-in hybrid variants. We'll begin with the Clarity Electric which comes with 120-kW electric motor delivering 161 horsepower and 221 pound-feet of torque. A 25.5-kWh battery pack provides the juice and can be recharged within three hours when plugged into a 240V outlet. As we reported previously and has since been confirmed by Honda, the Clarity EV will have a range of around 80 miles. Next is the Clarity Plug-In Hybrid that uses a more powerful electric motor (181 horsepower electric motor producing 232 pound-feet of torque) and a 17-kilowatt hour (kWh) battery pack. A 1.5L Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder acts a range extender and direct power source (under certain conditions). Honda says the Plug-In can travel 42 miles on EV power alone. With the 1.5L engine, total range stands at 330 miles. Both Clarity models will be available later this year. The electric variant will only be available in California and Oregon as a lease-only program. Source: Honda Press Release is on Page 2 Honda Electrified! Clarity Plug-in Hybrid and Clarity Electric Unveiled at 2017 New York International Auto Show Apr 12, 2017 - NEW YORK CITY "3-in-1" Clarity series provides unparalleled electric drive choice with premium midsize sedan capability and three advanced electrified powertrain options Plug-in Hybrid anticipated to earn 42-mile EV driving range rating and 330-mile extended range rating Honda targets five-fold increase in sales of electrified vehicles in next four years Honda today revealed its all-new Clarity Plug-in Hybrid and Clarity Electric alongside the already available Clarity Fuel Cell, saying it will target U.S. sales of 75,000 Clarity vehicles in the first four model years. The Clarity series will contribute to an anticipated five-fold increase in Honda's U.S. sales of electrified vehicles over the next four years as the company works toward its target that two-thirds of its global automobile sales will come from electrified vehicles by 2030. The two all-new electrified Honda vehicles will join the Clarity Fuel Cell, launched in December 2016, to make Clarity the first ever vehicle series offering customers an expanded array of electrified vehicle choices with fuel cell, battery electric and plug-in hybrid powertrains wrapped in a sophisticated, spacious and comprehensively equipped five-passenger sedan. "The Honda Clarity is aimed at accelerating the deployment of advanced electrified powertrain technology and bringing electrified vehicles further into the mainstream," said Jeff Conrad, senior vice president of American Honda Motor Co., Inc., at the company's auto show press conference. "The Clarity series also heralds the advancement of our Honda Electrification Initiative, representing our investment in the full spectrum of electric-vehicle technologies." "Electrification is the future of mobility and the future of Honda, and it all starts now with this new Clarity series," added Steve Center, vice president of the Connected and Environmental Business Development Office at American Honda. Honda Clarity Series As the next progression of Honda's dynamic styling for electrified products, each Clarity variant has a low, wide aerodynamic body with unique design elements, including its own special hero color, and differentiated front styling, headlights, tail lamps and 18-inch alloy wheel designs. Combined with elegant and advanced exterior styling, each Clarity series vehicle has a spacious interior with comfortable seating for five adults, outfitted with premium, environmentally responsible materials. Offering Honda's "fun-to-drive" DNA, each Clarity variant provides a smooth, quiet and highly refined driving experience, aided by the smooth and seamless character of electric drive torque and acceleration. The Clarity series also features advanced technologies, including Display Audio with Android Auto™ and Apple CarPlay™, and the full suite of HONDA SENSING™ safety and driver-assistive technologies. With three different powertrains and luxury packaging, the Clarity series has wide appeal. This shared "3-in-1" platform strategy will enable Honda to respond to infrastructure and market developments, provide customers nationwide with an ultra-low carbon vehicle that meets their lifestyle needs, and takes Honda toward higher volume sales of advanced powertrain products that will help reduce CO2 emissions. The Clarity series is at the vanguard of Honda's commitment to address society's energy and environmental concerns as the company expects significant growth in sales of efficient, lower CO2 electrified vehicles. Honda has previously announced plans to introduce a dedicated new hybrid car to the U.S. market in 2018. The new Honda hybrid car will be made in America. Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid The 2018 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid, launching at dealerships nationwide later this year, is anticipated to earn an all-electric driving range rating of 42 miles1, the longest of any midsize plug-in hybrid. For longer trips, the Clarity Plug-in Hybrid can utilize its hyper-efficient 1.5-liter Atkinson cycle 4-cylinder engine to generate electricity and, under certain conditions, to act as a direct power source, resulting in an anticipated overall driving range rating in excess of 330 miles1. The vehicle's electromotive power comes from a 181-horsepower electric motor producing 232 lb.-ft. of torque and drawing power from both the gasoline engine and a 17-kilowatt hour (kWh) battery pack with a recharge time of 2.5 hours at 240 volts. The Clarity Plug-in Hybrid is anticipated to earn an EPA fuel economy rating of 105 MPGe1 (miles per gallon of gasoline-equivalent) combined, at the top of its class. The Clarity Plug-in Hybrid features three selectable modes – Normal, Econ and Sport – allowing drivers to customize their experience, maximizing efficiency or driving performance. A fourth mode – HV mode – is provided to maintain the battery's state of charge and can be selected in conjunction with Normal, Econ and Sport driving modes. As the sales volume leader in the Clarity lineup, the Clarity Plug-in Hybrid will be offered in two premium-contented trims, standard and Touring. Honda Clarity Electric The 2017 Honda Clarity Electric is geared toward consumers who desire a spacious, comfortable and affordable sedan that suits their daily driving needs. The Clarity Electric is powered by a 161-horsepower (120-kilowatt) electric motor producing 221 lb.-ft. of torque and drawing power from a 25.5-kWh battery pack. The vehicle can by fully charged in just over three hours at 240 volts, and when using DC fast charging with the SAE Combined Charging System can achieve an 80 percent charge in just 30 minutes. The model is anticipated to have an anticipated EPA fuel economy rating of 120/102/111 MPGe (city/highway/combined)2. Like the Clarity Plug-in Hybrid, the Clarity Electric features three selectable driving modes – Normal, Econ and Sport. The Clarity Electric will launch later this year, starting with an attractive lease program in California and Oregon. Honda Clarity Fuel Cell Honda views fuel cells as the ultimate zero-emissions vehicle technology and the Clarity Fuel Cell offers green early adopters the latest technology to be on the forefront of "what's next." Honda began deliveries of the 2017 Clarity Fuel Cell in December 2016 in select California markets, where a consumer friendly network of hydrogen stations continues to grow, and has already delivered more than 100 vehicles. Technological innovations to the Clarity Fuel Cell have created a fuel cell stack that is 33 percent more compact with a 60 percent increase in power density compared to its predecessor, the Honda FCX Clarity. The more compact fuel cell and integrated powertrain, now comparable in size to a V-6 engine, fits entirely under the hood of the car, allowing for a more spacious cabin with seating for five passengers. At 366 miles, the Clarity Fuel Cell has the highest EPA driving range rating of any zero-emission vehicle in America, including fuel cell and battery electric vehicles, and an EPA fuel economy rating of 68 MPGe3 combined. The Clarity Fuel Cell is available for the competitive introductory lease price of $369 a month for 36 months with $2,868 due at signing4. The lease terms include an attractive mileage allowance of 20,000 miles per year, up to $15,000 of hydrogen fuel, up to 21 days of an Avis Luxury Rental in California, 24/7 roadside assistance, and eligibility for California "White Sticker" single occupant HOV access. Lessees can also apply for the State of California $5,000 rebate5. The Clarity Fuel Cell is available in three colors: Bordeaux Red Metallic, White Orchid Pearl and Crystal Black Pearl.
  20. Earlier this month, Ford CEO Mark Fields dropped some big bombshells concerning the company. One of those was a hybrid version of the F-150 for 2020. A spy photographer has given us our first look at what Ford has in mind for this. The F-150 mule caught in pictures only has the front covered up. But it appears the truck is a plug-hybrid. This conclusion is due to flaps that aren't hidden so well. One of these likely has the door hiding the socket to plug in the truck. The photographer who took the photos reports the mule had a slightly narrow front track and sounded like it had a four-cylinder under the hood. Motor1 isn't sure about this considering Mark Fields said the model "will offer powerful towing and payload capacity and operate as a mobile generator.” Achieving this with a four-cylinder could be tough unless Ford is planning to have a big battery pack and electric motors to do it. Over at Trucks.com, they think the F-150 plug-in hybrid could use the 2.3L EcoBoost four-cylinder found in the Mustang as it delivers 310 horsepower and 320 pound-feet of torque - giving it the necessary power to pull off Field's claim. Source: Motor1, Trucks.com
  21. It is no secret that Bentley is working on a plug-in hybrid variant of the Bentayga SUV due out next year. But Bentley CEO Wolfgang Duerheimer revealed that all of their models would have the option of a plug-in hybrid in the coming years. Speaking at the Automotive News World Conference, Duerheimer said this powertrain provides the best of two worlds - allowing owners to drive their vehicles on electric power only in cities where gas engines might be restricted and traveling for long distances without having to recharge the battery. “To cover long distances and to make it from one city to another -- and you travel long distances in the U.S. -- I think the combustion engine will follow us for a long time,” Duerheimer said. Following the Bentayga, the next-generation Continental GT will be the next model to get a plug-in hybrid option. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  22. Back in May, Google and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles made a startling announcement. The two would partner on building 100 specially prepared Chrysler Pacifica plug-in hybrid minivans with Google's autonomous driving technologies to be used for testing. Today, Waymo (the offshoot of Google's self-driving program) and FCA revealed what the van would look like. Yes, the van looks a little bit goofy with sensors sticking out on the front fenders and under the grille, along with massive radar dome. Other changes include major modifications to the chassis, electrical system, powertrain, and structure. Considering this took around six months, it is quite the achievement. “The Pacifica Hybrid will be a great addition to our fully self-driving test fleet. FCA’s product development and manufacturing teams have been agile partners, enabling us to go from program kickoff to full vehicle assembly in just six months. They've been great partners, and we look forward to continued teamwork with them as we move into 2017,” said John Krafcik, Chief Executive Officer of Waymo in a statement. The vans will join Waymo's test fleet early next year. Source: Fiat Chrysler Automobiles Press Release is on Page 2 CA Delivers 100 Uniquely Built Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid Minivans to Waymo for Self-driving Test Fleet Waymo and FCA reveal first look at fully self-driving Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivan Program kickoff to full vehicle assembly completed by technical teams in six months December 19, 2016 , Auburn Hills, Mich. - Waymo (formerly the Google self-driving car project) and FCA announced today that production of 100 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivans uniquely built to enable fully self-driving operations has been completed. The vehicles are currently being outfitted with Waymo’s fully self-driving technology, including a purpose-built computer and a suite of sensors, telematics and other systems, and will join Waymo’s self-driving test fleet in early 2017. Waymo and FCA also revealed today the first images of the fully self-driving Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid vehicle. This first-of-its kind collaboration brought engineers from FCA and Waymo together to integrate Waymo’s fully self-driving system into the all-new 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivan thereby leveraging each company’s individual strengths and resources. Engineering modifications to the minivan’s electrical, powertrain, chassis and structural systems were implemented to optimize the Pacifica Hybrid for Waymo’s fully self-driving technology. “The Pacifica Hybrid will be a great addition to our fully self-driving test fleet. FCA’s product development and manufacturing teams have been agile partners, enabling us to go from program kickoff to full vehicle assembly in just six months,” said John Krafcik, Chief Executive Officer, Waymo. “They've been great partners, and we look forward to continued teamwork with them as we move into 2017.” Waymo and FCA co-located part of their engineering teams at a facility in southeastern Michigan to accelerate the overall development process. In addition, extensive testing was carried out at FCA’s Chelsea Proving Grounds in Chelsea, Michigan, and Arizona Proving Grounds in Yucca, Arizona, as well as Waymo test sites in California. “As consumers’ transportation needs evolve, strategic collaborations such as this one are vital to promoting a culture of innovation, safety and technology,” said Sergio Marchionne, Chief Executive Officer, FCA. “Our partnership with Waymo enables FCA to directly address the opportunities and challenges the automotive industry faces as we quickly approach a future where fully self-driving vehicles are very much a part of our daily lives.” Self-driving cars have the potential to prevent some of the 1.2 million deaths that occur each year on roads worldwide, 94 percent of which are caused by human error. This collaboration will help FCA and Waymo better understand what it will take to bring self-driving cars into the world.
  23. We can't help but wonder if MINI is kind of missing the point of their name. This thought came up as we were looking at the details of the second-generation Countryman that will be debuting next month at the LA Auto Show. Compared to the outgoing Countryman, the 2017 model is 8.1-inches longer, 1.3-inches wider, and rides on a wheelbase that 2.9-inches longer. MINI, you're supposed to keep your vehicles small, not making them bigger. But we have to admit this growth spurt does make the Countryman look more SUV than raised-hatchback. The increase in size also allows for a larger interior. Shoulder room increases by 2-inches for both rows and rear legroom jumps by 3.8-inches. Cargo space measures 17.6 cubic feet with the rear seats up and 47.6 cubic feet with the seats down - up 5.6 cubic feet in both measurements. Otherwise, the interior matches up with current MINI models with such details as an improved layout for the dash and the option of a 8.8-inch screen for the infotainment system. There are three powertrains on offer. The base Cooper features a turbocharged 1.5L three-cylinder with 134 horsepower and 162 pound-feet of torque. Cooper S models get a turbocharged 2.0L four-cylinder producing 189 horsepower and 207 pound-feet of torque. Both gas engines feature the choice of a six-speed manual or an eight-speed automatic, along with the choice of front-wheel or all-wheel drive. New for this generation is Cooper S E Countryman All4 - MINI's first plug-in hybrid. This pairs the 1.5L three-cylinder with an 87-horsepower electric motor and a 7.6-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery. Total output stands at 221 horsepower and 284 pound-feet of torque. This makes the Cooper S E Countryman All4 the most powerful Countryman on sale (until the JCW version comes out). Electric-only range stands at 24 Miles. MINI hasn't released any details on how it takes to recharge. MINI says the 2017 Countryman will arrive in the U.S. next March. The plug-in hybrid will arrive in June. Source: MINI Press Release is on Page 2 Introducing the Biggest, Most Adventurous MINI Yet: The New MINI Countryman - First ever plug-in hybrid available on Countryman as Cooper S E ALL4 variant - World Premiere of all three variants at Los Angeles International Auto Show - Cooper and Cooper S go on sale in March 2017, while Cooper S E ALL4 plug-in hybrid goes on sale in June 2017 Woodcliff Lake, NJ – October 25, 2016 – MINI USA introduced today the biggest, most adventurous MINI ever, the all-new 2017 MINI Countryman. That’s not all. For the first time ever, a MINI model will be offered as a plug-in hybrid, combining the best of both worlds. The MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 will be powered by both a three- cylinder MINI TwinPower Turbo Technology gasoline engine and an electric hybrid synchronous motor. All three of the new MINI Countryman variants will make their World Premiere at the Los Angeles International Auto Show at a press conference on Wednesday, November 16th, at 11:50 am PDT. The all-new MINI Countryman has been completely redesigned and reengineered from the ground up, yet still is instantly identifiable as a MINI. Now incorporating BMW Group engine technology and vehicle architecture, the all-new MINI Countryman offers an all-turbocharged engine lineup with outstanding acceleration and the go-kart driving dynamics that MINI owners have come to know and love – especially when experienced with the added traction that comes from the latest generation of ALL4 all- wheel drive. At the same time, this new architecture delivers excellent ride quality and enables the most spacious MINI interior ever. “The new MINI Countryman is not only the largest MINI we’ve ever built, but it’s also the most technologically advanced and most versatile MINI of our product line up,” said Thomas Felbermair, Vice President MINI of the Americas. “The addition of the plug-in hybrid option is a major milestone for the brand and we look forward to bringing this exciting new vehicle into one of the top performing market segments.” Fun to drive The benefits from the BMW Group engine technology are evident across both the Cooper and Cooper S variants, with the new three-cylinder MINI TwinPower turbocharged engine on the MINI Cooper Countryman delivering 42 percent more torque than its predecessor, just shy of the outgoing Cooper S variant. The MINI Cooper Countryman can also hit 0 – 60 mph 1.6 seconds more quickly than did its predecessor, and for the first time, can be matched with ALL4 all-wheel drive. Meanwhile, with 207 ft-lbs on tap, the turbocharged four-cylinder engine on the MINI Cooper S Countryman nearly matches the torque output of the outgoing MINI John Cooper Works Countryman. As the most adventurous MINI ever built, traction and performance in all kinds of conditions, wet or dry, rugged or smooth, straight or curvy, the new MINI Countryman benefits from the all-new ALL4 all-wheel drive system. The fully automatic system seamlessly delivers power to the wheels that grip and reacts to road conditions in as little as .25 seconds, with no action required by the driver or passenger. Spacious interior The biggest MINI ever means more space for cargo, people and anything else needed for your next big adventure. Not only does the all-new MINI Countryman offer cavernous cargo space – an increase of 30 percent compared to the outgoing generation – but with sliding, folding rear seats, a high roofline, and an adjustable trunk floor, it offers an incredibly flexible, versatile one too. The new MINI Countryman now has more front and rear legroom, front and rear headroom and rear seat shoulderroom than many of the major competitors in its class. Pre-Outfitted with Premium Features Although the new MINI Countryman continues the MINI tradition of offering an incredible array of possibilities for custom configuration, some customers may find that the car is already loaded before they’ve added any options. Every MINI Countryman will come standard with: - an expansive Panorama Sunroof - Sensatec Leatherette Upholstery - Comfort Access keyless entry - MINI Connected infotainment system with 6.5-inch high-resolution display - Rear View Camera with guidelines - Rear Park Distance Control (parking sensors) - Bluetooth supporting Telephone, Audio Streaming, and Siri Eyes Free - Automatic Headlights and Rain-Sensing Windshield Wipers - Fore-and-Aft Sliding Rear Seats with Reclining and 40:20:40 Split-Folding Backrests - 17-inch light alloy wheels (Cooper) or 18-inch light alloy wheels (Cooper S) Models with ALL4 all-wheel drive also come standard with heated seats. Cooper S models (with and without ALL4) come with standard LED headlights and daytime running lights, bolstered sport seats, and 18-inch light alloy wheels. In addition to the standard features highlighted above, the new MINI Countryman features a number of options to improve the overall experience for the driver and passenger using a completely new generation of technology. A Technology Package includes a new 8.8-inch touchscreen navigation system, driven by MINI Connected 5.0, a redesigned and new-generation user interface and operating system, as well as Qi wireless device charging capability and MINI Find Mate Bluetooth tags. The option to plug-in The biggest, most adventurous MINI ever built will also be the most technologically advanced MINI when the brand launches its first ever plug-in hybrid model, the new MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4, in June 2017. Behind the scenes, a 3-cylinder gasoline engine works in tandem with a powerful electric motor to produce a combined peak output of 221 hp, with the e-rear axle enabling all-season ALL4 traction – but for drivers, Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 simply means high-tech Motoring fun. It’s the perfect vehicle for city dwellers who wish to enjoy the benefits of purely electric mobility when commuting between home and work every day, for example, while at the same time benefiting from unlimited long-distance suitability on the weekend. #FromWhereIMINI Later this week, drone photographer Dirk Dallas (@dirka) will be taking the new MINI Countryman on a cross country adventure to its World Premiere in Los Angeles. Fellow MINI fans and adventurers can follow the action @MINIUSA as Dirk shares some of his favorite adventure spots across the country. Additionally, fans will have a chance at winning limited edition MINI Adventure Series patches by guessing Dirk’s #FromWhereIMINI location. The new MINI Countryman will go on sale in March 2017 at MINI dealers across the U.S. with the MINI Cooper S E Countryman ALL4 plug-in hybrid following in June 2017. Pricing for the U.S. market will be announced at a later date.
  24. Back in January, during the Detroit Auto Show, we found a sign that Ford was preparing a plug-in hybrid Ford Explorer even though it hadn't been officially announced. A few days ago, Ford did officially unveil it as a Europe only model. The Ford Explorer Plug-in looks to be using the same running gear as the Lincoln Aviator GT, a 3.0 liter twin-turbo V6 plus electric motor that produces around 444 horsepower and 620 lb-ft of torque running through its specialized 10-speed transmission. All-wheel drive is standard. It is able to run for about 25 miles in EV-only mode. Under the cargo floor is a 13.1 kWh lithium-ion battery pack, slightly smaller than the battery in the now canceled Chevrolet Volt. The plug-in version will only be available on the S-Line and Platinum trim lines. Read more about the Ford Explorer and Lincoln Aviator below. Ford of Europe Press Release on Page 2 FORD UNVEILS ALL-NEW EXPLORER PLUG-IN HYBRID SUV WITH 40 KM (25 MILES) ZERO-EMISSION CITY DRIVING RANGE All-new Ford Explorer Plug-In Hybrid seven-seat sports utility vehicle to go on sale in Europe later this year Electrified powertrain combines 3.0‑litre EcoBoost petrol engine, electric motor and battery for 450 PS, 840 Nm of torque, and 40 km (25 miles) pure-electric city driving range Vehicle is all-new to Europe and features as standard new Reverse Brake Assist as well as Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop & Go, Speed Sign Recognition and Lane-Centring Luxurious interior offers 10.1-inch touchscreen for SYNC 3 connectivity and features as standard FordPass Connect modem, B&O Sound System, easy-to-operate flexible seating Versatility, capability and refinement optimised with 10-speed automatic transmission, Intelligent All-Wheel Drive, and Terrain Management System with selectable Drive Modes AMSTERDAM, Netherlands, April. 2, 2019 – The all-new Ford Explorer SUV today made its European debut at a special “Go Further” event in Amsterdam, Netherlands, as Ford announced a unique plug-in hybrid version of America’s all-time best selling SUV will go on sale in Europe later this year. The all-new Ford Explorer Plug-In Hybrid will be offered in two distinctive, high-specification, left-hand drive variants – the sporty, Ford Performance-inspired Explorer ST-Line and the luxurious Explorer Platinum. Both are powered by a combination of Ford’s 3.0‑litre EcoBoost V6 petrol engine, electric motor and generator to deliver 450 PS and 840 Nm of torque, alongside pure-electric driving capability. Standard Ford Intelligent All-Wheel drive technology supported by seven Drive Modes and Ford’s 10-speed automatic transmission optimises performance in scenarios from urban driving to off-road. A refined and confidence-inspiring driving experience is enhanced with sophisticated driver assistance technologies as standard, including Adaptive Cruise Control with Stop & Go, Speed Sign Recognition and Lane-Centring functionalities. The exceptionally spacious, luxurious, comfort-focussed interior offers advanced features including a 10.1‑inch central portrait-mounted touchscreen and 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster display. Families can get the most from road trips with versatile load and seating configurations and family-friendly innovations such as easy entrance and exit to the third row seats using just one hand. “I am very excited about the iconic Ford Explorer coming to Europe. The all-new Explorer comes with unstoppable design and phenomenal specification. The most versatile SUV we have ever offered for customers in the region is able to carry seven adults in comfort, tow a 2,500 kg trailer with ease, and still deliver 40 km (25 miles) zero-emissions city driving range,” said Roelant de Waard, vice president, Marketing, Sales & Service, Ford of Europe. “Technologies like our 10.1-inch touchscreen and Reverse Brake Assist debut in Europe to make the Explorer Plug-In Hybrid supremely rewarding and easy to drive.” New from the ground-up the all-new sixth generation Ford Explorer was unveiled for customers in the U.S. earlier this year. First introduced in 1991, Explorer kick-started in the U.S. the rapid growth of the SUV segment that has now become immensely successful worldwide. Zero-emission driving The all-new Explorer Plug-In Hybrid delivers the energy-efficiency, refinement and performance benefits of an electrified powertrain in many driving scenarios, while maintaining the driving range of a traditional combustion engine. An electric-only urban cycle driving range of 40 km (25 miles) qualifies for tax breaks in some markets. Ford’s 350 PS 3.0-litre EcoBoost engine is supported by a 100 PS electric motor. The 13.1 kWh lithium-ion battery can be charged using a charging port located on the front left-hand side fender between the door and wheel arch. In addition, the battery is automatically replenished on the move using regenerative charging technology that captures kinetic energy normally lost during braking. The electric motor enables the Explorer to deliver zero-emission, pure-electric driving capability, and drivers can choose when and how to deploy battery power using EV Auto, EV Now, EV Later and EV Charge modes. When the battery reaches its lowest state-of-charge, the Explorer automatically reverts to EV Auto mode – supplementing petrol engine power with electric motor assistance using recaptured energy for optimised fuel-efficiency. The Explorer Plug-In Hybrid will deliver anticipated 78 g/km CO2 emissions and 3.4 l/100 km fuel efficiency.* The Explorer Plug-In Hybrid’s parallel hybrid architecture also enables the full combined power and torque of both petrol engine and electric motor to be deployed simultaneously for enhanced performance on- and off-road, and 2,500 kg towing capability. Ford’s sophisticated 10-speed automatic transmission further optimises fuel-efficiency and refinement. “The Explorer is a true SUV – designed for families with a real sense of adventure – so it was essential that the Explorer Plug-In Hybrid featured a powertrain that could haul anything from boats to horseboxes,” said Matthias Tonn, Explorer chief programme engineer for Europe. “We specifically chose a parallel hybrid architecture that lets drivers use all 450 PS and 840 Nm of torque. We’ve even added a more advanced version of our Blind Spot Information System, that covers a 10 metre trailer.” Advanced Intelligent All-Wheel Drive technology every 10 milliseconds analyses inputs from dozens of sensors, including vehicle speed and yaw, ambient air temperature, wheel slip and towing status to determine whether additional traction is needed. An all-new single speed transfer case featuring an electro-mechanical torque clutch can seamlessly adjust torque delivery between the front and rear wheels within 100 milliseconds for a more secure footing on the road. Like the 10-speed automatic transmission, the system uses adaptive learning algorithms to continually adjust responses for optimised refinement. The Terrain Management System uses selectable Drive Modes to enable customers to tailor their drive experience to road, weather and terrain conditions on demand, including Normal, Sport, Trail, Slippery, Tow/Haul, Eco, and Deep Snow and Sand modes – with each Drive Mode featuring a unique graphical display in the 12.3-inch instrument cluster. Hill Descent Control also helps make light work of off-road terrain. Stress-free journeys in town and country Sophisticated driver assistance technologies contribute to a refined and intuitive driving experience for Explorer Plug-In Hybrid customers, including features designed to make it easier to drive a large vehicle in urban environments. Available Active Park Assist 2 enables fully-automated manoeuvres into parallel and perpendicular parking spaces at the push of a button. The system identifies suitable parking spaces and the driver can control vehicle motion by simply selecting neutral and holding down a single centre console-mounted button. The vehicle then fully controls forward and reverse gear selection, throttle and braking, as well as steering to manoeuvre into spaces before engaging park. The technology can also help drivers exit parallel parking spaces using fully automated Park-out Assist. Blind Spot Information System with Cross Traffic Alert warns drivers reversing out of a parking space of vehicles that may soon be crossing behind them, and can apply the brakes to avoid or mitigate the effects of collisions if drivers do not respond to warnings. In addition, Reverse Brake Assist uses radar and ultrasonic sensors to detect an object in the vehicle’s path, and can apply the brakes automatically to avoid an imminent collision when the vehicle is backing up at a low speed – such as when exiting a driveway. Also helping drivers negotiate awkward scenarios, rear-view and front-view cameras with built-in lens cleaners combine with additional cameras mounted beneath the door mirrors to provide a 360-degree view around the vehicle projected on to the central display. Pre-Collision Assist with Pedestrian and Cyclist Detection technology can detect people and cyclists in or near the road ahead, or who may cross the vehicle’s path, and automatically apply the brakes if it detects a potential collision and the driver does not respond to warnings. Stop-start traffic, highway driving and long distance road trips are made less stressful using Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) with Stop & Go, Speed Sign Recognition and Lane-Centring. The technology helps the Explorer Plug-In Hybrid maintain a comfortable driving distance from vehicles ahead and can help keep the vehicle centred in its lane. In addition, the technology can adjust the vehicle speed to within legal limits by monitoring the roadside and overhead gantries for speed signs in addition to using information from the on-board navigation system. Stop & Go enables the ACC system to bring the vehicle to a complete halt in stop-start traffic, and automatically pull away if the stopping duration is less than 3 seconds. For stopping durations greater than 3 seconds, the driver can push a steering wheel button or gently apply the accelerator pull away. Lane-Centring technology monitors road markings and can apply gentle but discernible torque to the steering system to help drivers stay centred in their lane whenever the ACC system is activated. Designed to support drivers at speeds up to 200 km/h (125 mph), the technology will deliver visual and audible warnings if it detects a lack of steering wheel input from the driver. Further technologies to help drivers avoid or mitigate the effects of accidents include Ford’s Lane-Keeping System, and Evasive Steering Assist that provides steering support to help avoid a collision. Post-Impact Braking provides braking after a collision to lessen injury and damage caused by a secondary crash event. “It’s not about filling the vehicle with technology for technology’s sake,” said Torsten Wey, manager, Driver Assistance and Safety Technology, Ford of Europe. “It’s about improving the experience, making driving less stressful, and helping the driver to feel more confident behind the wheel.” Capable and comfortable Standing more than 5 metres long, 2 metres wide and almost 2 metres high, the all-new Explorer Plug-In Hybrid delivers the luxury of space for up to seven occupants in three rows of seats. First and second row passengers benefit from more than 1 metre of headroom and legroom, and more than 1.5 metres of shoulder room. Offering 96 centimetres headroom, more than 1 metre of shoulder room and more than 83 centimetres legroom, the third row of seats can also easily accommodate adults in comfort. Standard Easy Fold Seats with Power Raise for the third row and Easy Fold Seats for the second row fold flat to create a cargo area that offers 2,274 litres of load space. The interior offers 123 litres of stowage space throughout the cabin, giving passengers in all three rows no shortage of places to stow personal items – alongside no less than 12 cupholders. A rotary gear shift dial for the 10-speed automatic transmission; heated and cooled 10-way power adjustable front seats; heated second row seats; wireless charging pad for compatible devices; heated steering wheel; retractable second row sunshades; and second and third row privacy glass are among the comfort enhancing features delivered as standard. Platinum models also feature a 14-speaker, 1000-watt premium B&O Sound System as standard, with a 12-speaker, 800-watt premium B&O Sound System for ST-Line variants. FordPass Connect embedded modem technology turns the Explorer Plug-In Hybrid into a mobile WiFi hotspot with connectivity for up to 10 devices. In addition to helping drivers plan faster, less stressful journeys with Live Traffic updates for the navigation system and enabling occupants to stream entertainment on the move, FordPass Connect allows a range of convenient features via the FordPass mobile app, including: Vehicle Locator, helping owners find their SUV in sprawling shopping mall car parks Vehicle Status, for checking fuel levels, alarm status, oil life and more Door Lock Unlock, to remotely allow access to your vehicle Remote Start** The 10.1-inch portrait mounted touchscreen – standard for the Platinum variant – enables navigation maps to fill the entire screen for easy viewing, or split the space with audio information. The screen uses capacitive glass comparable to that used in smartphones and tablets, providing a quicker, more responsive interaction with the SYNC 3 communications and entertainment system, which also allows drivers to control audio, navigation and climate functions plus connected smartphones using simple voice commands. The touch screen shares information with the available 12.3-inch all-digital instrument cluster, configured to support drivers in getting the most from their Explorer Plug-In Hybrid powertrain with dedicated screens including power flow, charging and energy-efficiency coaching. An 8‑inch central touchscreen and 12.3-inch digital instrument cluster are standard for the ST-Line variant. Stylish, modern design A number of consistent design qualities have helped define Explorer during 29 years of success in the U.S., and the design team strived to hold on to these important pieces of heritage when designing the all-new generation. Longtime traits include Explorer’s blacked-out front and rear window pillars. A sporty, stylish appearance is achieved using a sloping roofline and short front overhang. The Explorer Plug-In Hybrid comes standard with bold 20-inch alloy wheels with black machined finish for ST-Line models and tarnished dark machined finish for Platinum models. ST-Line models feature a gloss black finish one-piece grille, and high gloss black for the roof rails tailgate applique and door claddings. The interior also features red accent stitching for seats, floor mats and sporty flat-bottom steering wheel, as well as carbon fibre-effect appliques for the instrument panel. Platinum models feature a satin finish one-piece grille, and satin finish for the roof rails tailgate applique and door claddings. The interior also adds real wood appliques for the instrument panel. “Massive charisma and unprecedented road presence come as standard with our all-new Explorer Plug-In Hybrid,” Matthias Tonn said. “With distinctive ST-Line and Platinum variants available, customers can find the right option to suit their personality.” # # #
  25. In Europe, Volkswagen offers a couple of plug-in hybrid models such as the Golf GTE. But don't expect any those plug-in hybrids to come to the U.S. "It's a bridging technology," between internal-combustion and full-electric cars, said Matthew Renna, Volkswagen North America Region's vice president of e-mobility yesterday at the Chicago Auto Show. "It's very cost-prohibitive to have two different powertrains on one platform." Volkswagen has made no secret about their electric car ambitions, with plans to launch a full lineup within the next few years. While Europe will get a small hatchback based on I.D. Concept, the U.S. will get a production version of the Crozz concept. Volkswagen is also planning on selling their upcoming EVs in all 50 states, not only in those that require automakers to sell certain number of EVs. "The plan is to sell nationwide. The goal is a nationwide roll-out ASAP," said Renna. Source: Roadshow

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