August 2nd, 2009
For those of you who follow our blog, you know we’re big fans of what the folks at Aptera are up to. Aptera is building an all-electric, three-wheeled car that has a small fraction as much aerodynamic drag as a Prius. The Aptera 2e goes 100-120 miles with a top speed of 85-90mph, and boasts normal car safety features and impressive crash test results. And it looks like a super cool Jetson mobile, which makes it especially exciting.
Now the folks at Aptera are starting to reveal what the inside of their space-age auto will look like. You can see a sample below and here is what Aptera has to say about their design developments:
“The first major issue was space. We tested men and women of every age and stature and found, in many cases, we were not offering enough room in the cabin. With that information, we enhanced the cabin using our Aptera formula — safety, then aerodynamics, then lightweight. The new interior cabin is now roughly 10% larger by every measure.
“The new 2 series also now has headroom and legroom comparable to, if not better than, the Mini and Chevy Volt. We widened the area at the hips to provide more space than the Smart EV and the Nissan Cube. Then to top it off, we increased our cargo capacity by more than 24 cubic feet, which is nearly two times the space available in the Honda Accord.”
Alright, let’s get that thing into market and start driving it! We’re ready!
You can learn more about Aptera here. Images courtesy of Aptera.
Popularity: 10% [?]
January 14th, 2009
The 2009 Detroit Auto Show is this week, and there is plenty of exciting green automotive action going down! The auto companies exhibiting seem to be working to “out-green” each other…. which is fine by us.
Toyota unveiled its new 2010 Prius to great excitement. This new model will offer 50 MPG, up from 46 MPG for the current model. The new model also featured solar panels on the roof which power the car’s cooling system. The new Prius is also faster, accelerating from 0 to 60 MPH in 9.5 seconds. (Although how many Prius drivers are really into gunning it?) They have not yet announced the price (current models start at ~$22K), but the new Prius will be on sale in the US this Spring.
Another green car leader, Honda, unveiled its new Insight hybrid model for 2010. According to MSNBC, the Insight’s hybrid design is quite different from Toyota’s, functioning as a primarily gas-powered vehicle with an electric assist motor, a decision that produces better highway fuel economy than city mileage. The Insight will get 40 in the city and 43 on the highway, according to Honda. The Insight will also likely cost less than the Prius as it has a smaller battery and electric motor. Honda has not announced the price of its new Insight, but said that it will be below that of its Civic hybrid. Likely it will go for around $20,000.
The American companies were also trying to seem like they were on the green super-highway to the future. Chrysler showed off the 200C EV with an electric power train. This is still a concept car, based on the existing Chrysler 300C model. This new hybrid car will go 40 miles on electricity, with an engine generating more energy for additional range when needed. Let’s hope they stay in business long enough to bring this car to market!
One of the sexiest cars on the floor was the Karma from Fisker Automotive. The car is simply gorgeous. While the Karma debuted as a concept car at last year’s show, this year it was back as a production-ready vehicle. They also showed off a new concept– the Karma S, which is a two-door with a retractable roof. (The S stands for Sunset.) Fisker will start delivering the four-door Karma sedan this year and it already has over 1000 pre-orders. The Karma is a plug-in hybrid that, when fully-charged, burns no fuel for the first 50 miles. According to CNET, Fisker says the Karma will go to 60 mph in 5.8 seconds–which is fast, but not outstanding. Still, you’d look so cool in it, who would care? But not many of can afford this height of eco-cool: the starting price for the production Karma is $87,900.
Images: Prius from Jalopnik.com; Insight from Honda; Karma from Fisker Automotive.
Popularity: 5% [?]