Powered by hops.
Festo’s Bionic Kangoroo combines an electric with a pneumatic drive. Just like the real thing, it can “recover” part of the energy produced by hopping about, which (also like the real thing) happens via its hamstring. That in this case is made out of rubber. But that’s only a minor detail.
elektrotechnik.vogel.de (in German)
This pickup truck comes flying out of nowhere – literally. Luckily for these Iowa cops, the 4×4 did not clip them as it approached the ditch, where it landed safely and drove off into the night. Have a save weekend!
The no-charging etiquette.
What to do when you end up at a broken charging station? Transport Evolved lists tips and tricks, starting with calling the operator all the way to getting towed. Very important here – to avoid comments from neighbours, have the tow truck drop you and your car off around the corner! The last bit of juice should get you to your front door.
Could the U.S. President soon be the proud passenger of a Model X Limo? With the White House looking for a successor of the current ‘beast,’ why not make it a Tesla? It is a U.S. company and comes with a sort of ‘in-flight charging system,’ where it can be hooked up to another vehicle for power – and what could be more presidential than not even having to stop for gas and being independent from foreign oil?
Starring the Twizy.
Renault’s fun vehicle takes a lead in Christoph Waltz’ upcoming movie Zero Theorem. Here it serves as the preferred mode of transport of neurotic Londoners in the future. However dark the future may be, the Twizy is sure to spice it up!
thegreencarwebsite.co.uk, youtube.com (official trailer)
What looks like the latest Tesla commercial equalling the Model S to a spaceship has actually been produced by two college graduates. After just being embraced officially by Elon Musk, the success of their newly formed Everdream agency seems somewhat guaranteed.
youtube.com (video) via hybridcars.com
Fast and furry.
They are racing down the street, chased by… well, actually we don’t really know. But this kitty holds on tight to the steering wheel of its electric sports car in the film parody “Knead for Speed.” And who doesn’t want to start out the weekend with a dose of cat content?
Not sold on EVs…
…are those who should sell them, apparently. On the GM-Volt.com forum you will find some sad stories about car dealers not only misinforming but trying to keep its customers from buying electric cars from them. How will this ignite any spark?
Who needs GPS to get you where you’re going when you have this – a cargo bike with an integrated city map of Copenhagen? So far, only one of these exists. And the map is not for the rider. Owner Mikael Colville-Andersen developed it, so he can help point tourists in the right direction. He did not mention, however, if he’d also be willing to transport them to the destination – it is a cargo bike, after all.
Way ahead of his time.
According to his Polar Network online account, one EV owner in the UK began charging up his Nissan Leaf in 1970 – some 41 years before the car was even made and 42 years before the charging network existed. The single charging sessions was logged at 386,655 hours! And if you think the poor man is broke after paying the bill, you are wrong. According to the software, he saved 1.6 million pounds (2.6m dollars) in fuel costs…
Blackout at Volkswagen.
The e-Golf production at VW in Wolfsburg, Germany, had only just started when it came to an abrupt halt. Oddly enough, a problem at VW’s power plant led to a blackout leaving half the city and the unfinished e-Golfs without electricity for three hours.
spiegel.de (in German)
12,000 euro electric car.
We are not joking – this is the price Fulu is asking for its latest development, the ‘Electric Traction’ – including the battery. Do not put up your hopes for a bargain too high though, as the Fulu is very basic if not minimalistic. It sits two but nothing more. Have a nice weekend!
focus.de (in German), fulu.ch
A Chinese handyman by hobby wanted to make something special for his grandson and built him a miniature Lamborghini. Electric of course! Powered by five batteries, the car has a range of 37 miles and can reach 62 mph. The total production costs – around 600 euros (823 dollars).
Putting the pedal to the metal.
TV show host Jay Leno takes the wheel of a one-million-dollar Mini Countryman. Its owner Nani Roma – who was also the winner of the 2014 Dakar Rally – doesn’t look reassured as they jet through California’s Death Valley. Why? Just watch!
This dad lets his daughter park his BMW i3 for him – his 5-year-old daughter! How did she do it? Just press play…
May I take you for a ride?
In a recent ad, race driver Jeff Gordon let a car dealer fear for his life and that of his car, when taking him on a rapid test drive. The video, sponsored by Pepsi, went viral but was dubbed by an auto journalist as fake. To convince him of his driving skills and to take revenge, Gordon, disguised as a cab driver, gave his accuser a lift eventually turning into a car chase with (fake) state troopers. Gordon got him good…
youtube.com (car dealer), youtube.com (journalist)
Before restoring the cars and closing the sinkhole that recently opened up underneath GM’s National Corvette Museum in Detroit, USA (we reported), the carmaker has decided to put the damaged cars on display. A viewing booth has been built around the site of the catastrophe. Nature has always delivered the best spectacle, has it not?!
A review of a different kind.
Cutting edge technology is not always glamorous as the latest robot lawnmower by Rumsauer shows. While the Wiper One XH looks undoubtedly fresh, the almost 6-minute video of the little automatic mower slowly scything its way through the most difficult terrain does not do it justice. Go mow, Wiper!
youtube.com (video), wiperrobot.com
For the records – almost.
At Kennedy Space Centre, Florida, the Hennessey Venom has set a new speed record. 270.49mph makes it the fastest production car ever, beating the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport. However, the record might not be officially recognised by Guinness as to count as a “production car” because 30 pieces will have to be produced. Unfortunately the Venom will only be build 29 times.
In New York authorities are making a point of towing cars belonging to the federal government such as the F.B.I. That’s right, New York’s one-tow-fits-all policy does not exempt cars from N.Y.P.D., the fire brigade or other agencies either. Please judge for yourself if local “safety hazard violations” overrule national security.
War of the cable.
A Florida couple fell victim to what could be dubbed as e-mobbing. They were charging their Chevy Volt when an unknown perpetrator cut the cord! The Volt sent a last distress signal to its owners, who highly suspect their neighbours.
Volvo On Call.
Forget about missing the postman and (again) not getting the long-awaited delivery. At the Mobile World Congress Volvo will showcase a new option for receiving packages directly to your car. A digital key only opens the car once to drop the package before the boot is closed again. We wonder if Amazon’s drones will also be able to open the doors?!
Mind the glass.
Google has compiled a list of advice to the early adopters of its smart glasses. Things to avoid are: staring into the distance for extended periods of time; recording people without their explicit consent; or wearing the Glasses on occasions requiring you to be fully present like romantic dates. In short: Don’t be a glasshole.
The first will be last.
Apple has only just started to spread rumours of the iPhone 6 but cues are already forming. So far it is a very short line consisting of just one Japanese called Yoppy. He even dressed up for the occasion as his object of desire and has thus become an important person of his own viral marketing campaign.
This lady might have felt like being on candid camera when she was captured trying to charge her Nissan Leaf. Unfortunately, she stopped at a Tesla supercharger station which plugs just won’t fit the thirsty Leaf. Extra points for trying though!
No time to hit the slopes this year? Casey Neistat shows, that it’s enough to hit the street. Hooked up to his SUV, he snowboards his way through New York City. Chances are, the trip would have been better on his lungs, had his driving force been electric. Maybe next time.
Nature strikes back.
Eight vintage cars of the Corvette National Museum have been swallowed by Earth. Security cameras were filming when a massive sinkhole under the museum’s so-called Sky Dome opened up and swallowed the cars. Luckily, no one has been hurt – apart from the cars.
youtube.com via nytimes.com
Instead of an ice scraper, this Polish man relied on the methodical use of a mallet to free his car from ice. More drastic even was his way of opening the frozen doors: climbing in through the boot and kicking the doors open from inside. We wish him a safe trip!
One man's accident…
…is another man’s treasure: In this case the sorrow was all the driver’s who got stuck in snow with his BMW i8 prototype. Naturally, spy photographers were having a field day. To make things worse, snow clearing vehicles had to be called to the rescue as the i8 came without a towing lug.
worldcarfans.com, autoevolution.com (Photo gallery)
Friend or foe.
Comparing snakes with brussel’s sprouts makes about as much sense as putting up an all-electric car against a mostly-electric car. Ironically, this is exactly what GM is doing with its new Volt spot. How about picking at the big gas guys first next time?!
youtube.com via cleantechnica.com