Good things come (back) to those who wait.
It was 33 years ago that American George Talley last saw his Corvette. It had been stolen from the streets of Detroit and was now found some 1,600 kilometres away. Manufacturer GM took it upon itself to return the vehicle to its rightful owner – and almost to the exact spot from where it had been taken.
usatoday.com (plus video)
Meet Robot Ray.
If your car cannot park itself, do not worry about it any longer. At Düsseldorf Airport, Robot Ray is there to lend a helping hand to drivers tired of steering. Just leave your vehicle at the Vehicle Transfer Station (VTS) where lasers take measure before leaving it to Ray to properly park it in an otherwise too tight lot. And he will get the car out of there too.
The time from placing the order to delivery of a new car can be torturing for some, pushing them to repeatedly check positions of car vessels and call the dealership. One Chinese Tesla customer apparently couldn’t handle the tension and repeated rescheduling. The first thing he did with, well, actually to his car, was to destroy the windshield with a wrench. This will definitively add another day or two before he can take his Model S for a spin.
Automatisation is the next big thing and it will change the manufacturing industries forever. But who says a robot cannot be fun? Dan Granett, a former NASA engineer is seeking funding for his ‘BugJuggler.’ The 20-metre high machine with its giant arms will be able to juggle with up to three VW Beetles weighing 1,800-pounds each. Definitely sounds sensational!
Remember the Swede advertising its old Volvo 245GL in the most modern marketing lingo (we reported)? Well, Christoffer Castor is back with a sequel, designed to make you laugh out loud. We wish you all a great weekend!
Coffee on wheels.
Wheely’s Bicycle Café by the Nordic Society For Invention and Discovery (NSID) is currently looking for crowdfunding calling on all bike baristas. The idea is a coffee station integrated into a cargo bike. The café’s energy demand is satisfied by a battery fed with solar power. Our suggestion for rainy days: Power a generator through pedalling.
indiegogo.com via treehugger.com
Quarter Pounder with quad.
McDonald’s is now delivering burgers with branded electric quads to customers in Vienna and parts of Lower Austria. The electric four-wheelers have a range of 80 kilometres and reach speeds of up to 45 kph.
heute.at (in German)
Catch them young.
Bentley now offers a toy version of its Bentley Blower from 1920. The ride-on car comes with alloy racing wheels and a hand-stitched leather seat but without a motor. With a 5,500 dollar price tag, on the other hand, it is rather “grown-up.”
Ladies tired of being patronised by male mechanics can now go to the “Only Girls” garage near Paris, France. There, not only a kids’ playroom is available but also massages and manicures are offered to the waiting customers. More importantly though, female staff is taking the drivers through every step of the repair process. Vive la femme!
When Facebook crashed yesterday causing something close to a panic within the social media community, a chocolate manufacturer made good use of the gap. KitKat turned to Twitter tweeting: “Looks like #Facebook is having a BREAK right now. Have a BREAK, too!” Well, we could not have put it better ourselves and wish you a wonderful weekend!
twitter.com via marketing-interactive.com
Putting luxury into train travel.
Japanese railway company J.R. East plans on building a so-called Cruise Train, or a “Penthouse on rails.” 360-degree glass ceilings and maisonette-style sleeping suites are only some of the features of the 50-million-dollar train. It will have room for 34 passengers only, so ticket prices will most probably be astronomically when it goes into service in the spring of 2017.
It´s all in the name.
The former Head of R&D at GM and now a professor at Michigan University has his own theory on why fuel cell technology has not yet taken off. It is because of its name, which he believes is too far from ordinary people’s reality and too close to combustion engines. He thus proposes to call them ‘hydrogen battery’ instead. By the way, his name is Larry Burns.
Tweet to win.
As all Formula E cars have the same specs, FIA came up with the ‘Fanboost,’ allowing the use of the full 200 kW driving power for a limited time. Which car benefits is strictly determined by popularity, as only the driver who gets the most @-mentions on twitter will literally be pushed forward by his followers.
Indian business man Rahul Thakar had got enough of his Jaguar XF being repeatedly broken. In a blunt social media post, he said that any donkey cart is more reliable than his luxury car. To prove his point, he took a picture of his Jaguar with eight donkeys harnessed to it. The viral impact his online “complaint” made, surely got Jaguar moving.
Just for kids.
Toyota presents its Camatte Sport at the Tokyo Toy Show, featuring hundreds of LEDs on car’s hood that can display different images. While some moms and dads might be a bit jealous of their kid’s electric roadster, Toyota says it hopes to inspire the next generation of carmakers.
carscoops.com, youtube.com (Video)
For those EV drivers feeling very close to mother nature, this charge point in the middle of the Bare Oaks Family Naturist Park might just become their favourite spot to plug in. The people in the picture definitely look like they are enjoying themselves. So is nude charging a new trend?!
facebook.com (picture contains nudity), chargemap.com
Odd one out.
In need for speed? Well, you got plenty of it in this video where the three super sports cars La Ferrari, McLaren P1 and Porsche 918 Spyder (all of them hybrid), competed at the Assen Circuit in the Netherlands. They were joined in the race by the Koenigsegg Agera R.
The wait for the future is over.
On Kickstarter, the HoverSkater project by Jim Pitts is looking for backers. While it still not lets you fly, the skateboard can get airborne for a short time due to its aircushion. Marty McFly, we need you here, now!
Lexus has agreed to supply Australian police with a Lexus GS 450h and a Lexus RX 450h, so officers don’t lose track on the icy roads. Because, who knew, you can go skiing in Australia! The vehicles will be used to patrol the street and inform people about safely driving in winter.
Please note: As our main office is located in Germany, we observe German holidays. Due to the Pentecost bank holiday, the next issue of ‘electrive.com today’ will be brought to you on Tuesday, June 10th. We wish you all a great weekend!
British police have received the ultimate tool to catch any thief – a race car! The Ariel Atom 3.5R goes from 0 to 60 mph in just 2.5 seconds. Too bad it won’t be used to chase anyone, but to lower motorcycle deaths on British roads. How a race car is supposed to help, remains a bit of a head scratcher.
In Britain, Range Rover SUVs have become a target for thieves. However, it is not the 4×4 these guys are after, but the headlight LEDs. As far as the newly formed police squad ‘Operation Emporia’ knows, the extra strong lights are being misused to provide light to grow cannabis plants. Well, at least it is for a green cause!
The bicycle is one of the most versatile forms of transport, but this video from Addis Ababa of a man piggy-backing his goat while riding a bike has left even us wondering – and laughing. And because videos of animals are always a hit, we got another one for you starring a cat and a bike.
youtube.com (goat), youtube.com (cat)
Tesla, nothing but junk.
That is Standard & Poor’s latest verdict. The rating agency gave stocks of the Californian carmaker a B-minus, or in other words the thumps down. The rating was unsolicited, however. Meaning, it was given without consulting Tesla and without Tesla asking for it. So maybe it was all just a cry for attention?
Electric coming out.
James May from Top Gear admitted on British radio that he is buying an electric car! Is this the end of the show as we know it? Will the famous presenter trio loose one of its petrol heads? In James’s defense, he bought a BMW i3 with petrol range-extender, so hopefully Jeremy Clarkson tempers justice with mercy.
Dear readers, due to Ascension Day, electrive.com will not be published this Thursday and Friday. We will be back with a fresh batch of electric news on Monday. Until then, we wish all a relaxing weekend!
These bikes are made for walkin'!
No doubt, cycling and walking will keep you fit and are probably the best ways to discover your city more intimately. But often walking is just not fast enough to keep up with the city’s pace. The Walking Bicycle Club combines the best of both worlds – so step on it!
High level austerity.
While Italy might seem to be in the middle of recession, the Italian State Police got their ride pimped by Lamborghini. The Huracán LP610-4 in blue and white comes outfitted with a siren system, and police radio. It is not the first Lambo in the force but actually replaces two Gallardos. Not exactly what we would call a cut in budget…
Road to perdition.
History seems to repeat itself with BMW now collecting perfectly working ActiveEs to kill the electric car once more. Naturally, the Electronauts are devastated but helpless as the ‘pre-production test fleet’ vehicles cannot be sold on to private buyers and were thus always destined for destruction. But really, is this German efficiency?
Mind the gap!
The French train operator SNCF has made a big faux-pas, quite literally. It ordered 2,000 new trains which are simply too wide for many stations in its network. Planning was done on the measurements of stations built in the last 30 years while most stations in France actually date back 50 years. What a very costly “malheur!”
Who thinks that today’s children are little couch potatoes getting their kicks in the virtual world?! Well, Razor’s Crazy Cart is here to change that. Its electrically powered front tyre can rotate 180° in both directions and thus open up a whole new world of crazy drifting, especially as there are no brakes.
Rumour has it that the next Batmobile will be a hybrid. As with the previous movie cars, Warner Bros. strives to have a fully functioning vehicle to use at promotion events. A hybrid would surely be handy as it could cleanly and silently drive on the red carpet. And after all, Batman is one of the good guys!