Fueling US backward.
The Koch-funded attempt to smear clean energy and electric mobility went dark as the website Fueling US Forward is down. This does not mean the campaign is over but rather that it has switched to different channels. Their Communications Director Alex Fitzsimmons for example is now on staff in the Department of Energy in Trump America and Koch network-affiliated think tanks like the Institute for Energy Research continue on course until exposed.
desmogblog.com, kochvsclean.com (exposure)
A rarity in any sense.
Volkswagen’s XL1, the one-litre car and plug-in hybrid that could have put VW on a truly efficient course – if they had build more than the 200 for public use. So it became a rarity instead and one so exclusive, it is now being offered second hand with an odo of ten miles for 99,999 GBP.
autotrader.co.uk via insideevs.com
In the eyes of the vehicle.
Daimler’s Moovel uses virtual reality to put the human driver in the position of a self-driving vehicle. Counterintuitive? Maybe but also a possibility to see the world through the eyes of an autopilot so to speak. To enhance immersion, Moovel chose a lying position for the human, who has nothing but a joystick to set course. Whether such design is able to inspire trust is dubious but it could certainly lead to people wishing the EV would take over.
Her Majesty's electric fleet
Royal is not likely to be the first word that springs to mind when thinking of the Nissan e-NV200 and yet such electric van has made it into the fleet at Buckingham Palace in London. Rather than to chauffeur Queen Elisabeth it will be used to transport plants, yet Her Majesty is well aware of EVs and also counts a BMW i3 and Renault Twizy among her prized possessions.
Dubai's police on hoverbikes.
The emirate’s police force is known for its fleet of fancy sport cars. Now it test an electric-powered aircraft, on top. Traffic jams shall no longer be any problem for the guardians of law: With the Hoversurf Scorpion they land and take-off whenever they want.
mashable.com (with video)
Used Model 3 for 150,000 dollars.
That was fast: Just a few weeks after Tesla started delivery of its Model 3, an employee put his own one up for sale – for not less than 150,000 dollars. Meanwhile the offer has been removed from the internet. Maybe because Tesla explicitly forbid his employees to resell their cars for more than the original price.
Opposed climate strategies.
The U.S. government has started to reset Barack Obama’s climate protection plan, as expected. However, France sends out completely contrary signals: The government just agreed to set an end to production of fossil fuels on French territory by 2040.
greencarcongress.com (USA), thelocal.fr (France)
Russian President Putin at the steering wheel of a Tesla?
That’s not completely unthinkable: Asked, whether he would be willing to buy a Tesla, he answered “why not?”, but added that he prefers vehicles that run on natural gas as they would be more environmentally friendly.
Aston Martin plans submarine and makes fun of Dyson.
The British manufacturer has unveiled plans for an own submarine, inspired by its hybrid hyper car Valkyrie. Besides that, Aston Martin mocks Dyson for its vision to develop a radical new EV model – by publishing a picture of its very first vacuum cleaner.
Elon Musk has reached out to hurricane-battered Puerto Rico, saying Tesla may help (re-)erect large scale solar power infrastructure and has started to deliver some PowerPacks. PR’s governor Ricardo Rossello reacted positively on Twitter, where he offered up his country as a flagship project for Tesla technologies, saying “Let’s talk.”
Fuel to the fire.
If there was one place where the smoking ban has made sense it is a gas station but sense is not always common. At least not for this guy in Bulgaria who refused to put the ciggie out when asked, prompting the attendant to resort to more drastic measures. He doused both smoker and his car with a fire extinguisher that took vapour to a new level. EV anyone?!
Flying with Kalaschnikow.
Russian company Kalaschnikow, widely known for its machine guns, obviously intends to become a market player in the electric aircraft business. Its currently presented prototype „Hoverbikes“ works with a joystick, but is still in a quite early stage of development.
Current world affairs let easily forget the fact that rockets used to be the stuff dreams were made of, at least before SpaceX came along and made them a reality. To top it up, Elon Musk has now revealed his latest plan of city-to-city rocket travel that would bring anyone anywhere on earth in less than 60 minutes in a so-called BFR for Big F***ing Rocket. The party pooper question is: How many Teslas do you need to build to set off that sort of carbon emission?
youtube.com via teslarati.com
Shell: EV stations designed by an oil giant.
First pictures of charging stations made by Shell have been taken in the British city of Warlingham. Regarding the design, the oil group does not seem to be very creative: The charging stations look quite a lot like fuel pumps of conventional service stations.
Spiced-up design for conventional scooter.
Based on electric scooter model Vectrix VX-1, designer Samuel Aguiar has created a flashy two-wheeler called Hope. Its appearance is a mixture of the Porsche 356, an iPhone and a Pokémon – at least this trio is what he himself considered his source of inspiration.
Fully Charged, Tesla Model 3.
Video tip I: The latest episode of Fully Charged leads Robert Llewellyn to a Formula E race in Paris and further to the Renault assembly plant in Flins, where the Zoe is rolling off the production lines.
Video tip II: The following video clip provides detailed images of Tesla’s Model 3 in a way they have not been shown before. This is true for the exterior of the freshly launched EV as well as for the interior.
Transport concepts for the future.
The latest design competition powered by Renault and a College of Art and Design in London has focussed on futuristic means of transport. The declared winner concept called Float envisions autonomous transport capsules with magnetic levitation tech replacing the wheels. The “bubble cars” shall be ordered by app and even be able to act as swarms.
dezeen.com, inhabitat.com, youtube.com
Greenpeace activist have boarded a ship carrying Volkswagen diesel vehicles in an attempt to stop them from being delivered to the UK. The block failed, but the Rainbow Warriors managed to call on Volkswagen to go fully electric. VW pointed out that there were 37 PHEV aboard the ship, so we took this occasion to reminisce on Greenpeace’s Dark side campaign back in 2011 and found a somewhat sexy sequel.
telegraph.co.uk (the ship), vimeo.com (Dark Side sequel)
Low cost range extender.
James Dierickx is an early adopter when it comes to electric mobility, something that cannot be said of his home state Iowa, where corn stands dense but chargers don’t. He thus built himself a range extender for his 2013 Ford Focus Electric, so he now drives around with a trunk load of lead acid batteries.
Limit to state aid.
BMW has lost its case against the EU Commission as it tried to overturn a cap on state aid. The Commission stipulated in 2014 that BMW should receive no more than 17m euros to expand production of its i3 and i8 in Leipzig. Germany had originally planned to grant 45m euros toward the project, which BMW has managed to see through either way.
Among all the save-the-world apostles FleetCarma’s video campaign stands out and puts the fun back into the whole driving story. Tagged #EVsAreBetter they released a series of short clips pointing out the obvious and not so obvious advantages of electric cars. Gas butler anyone?
youtube.com (gas butler), youtube.com (all videos)
This Toyota driver must have taken the term hybrid a little too literally when he turned his Prius into a flood-faring vessel in Houston. It did work back in 2015 on the short distance but it is unlikely the car has lived long enough to have braved through the latest desaster Harvey wrought.
youtube.com via carscoops.com