Posts Tagged Tesla

Falcon Wings give flight to all-electric Tesla X

TeslaX.Nov.15The long-awaited and highly anticipated Tesla X, an all-electric SUV was recently unveiled and even though it offers a range of 240 miles per full battery charge and top speed of 155 mph the most impressive part of the car is the fact that it has wings . . . “Falcon Wings.”

The wings open up (not out) to provide easy access to the two rear rows of seats.

Here’s a look at the new Tesla X in our article starting on P. 34 in the November issue of FINE Magazine:


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Luxurious e-cars take the high road toward sustainability

Tesla S Ocean white

2015 Tesla S

When researching electric vehicles, today’s eco-friendly minded shopper will find a cornucopia of choices on the market, ranging compact, golf cart-sized cars to mid-sized SUVs.

In fact, there are currently dozens of automakers featuring electric – or electrified – models in their lineups, with styles and options to fit just about any taste. Over the past decade hybrid vehicles have been paving the way by combining gasoline engines with electric motors to extend a car’s fuel mileage without sacrificing distance traveled between fill-ups.

2014 Chevrolet Volt

2014 Chevrolet Volt

Today, nearly every automaker features a hybrid model in its lineup, with many achieving an impressive 40-50 miles per gallon of gas. Plug-in hybrids, such as the Cadillac ELR, Chevrolet Volt, Toyota Prius Plug-in, Porsche Panamera and others, extend that range even further by running on electric-only charge for a short distance – such as driving around town – before the gasoline engine kicks in for longer distances.

But true electric vehicles take the technology a step farther. E-cars rely solely on electricity for power, with no gasoline needed at all. They are charged through electrical outlets – at home or at commercial charging stations – and store the power in batteries built into the vehicle. The battery technology is rapidly developing to be able to provide a longer lasting charge without adding hundreds of pounds of weight to the vehicle.

When it comes to range – the distance that the car travels on a single battery charge – most of today’s electric vehicles are achieving approximately 80-100 miles per change, making them great for around town driving and short commutes. But longer trips – like weekend getaways to Palm Springs or Mammoth Mountain – are virtually out of the question for most e-cars because a mid-trip recharge would be required.

Tesla Model S
There is, however, one e-car automaker that stands out from the crowd when it comes to battery range. Tesla, headed by billionaire visionary and entrepreneur Elon Musk, co-founder of PayPal and current CEO of SpaceX, is way ahead of the competition.

Tesla interior

Stunning interior of the Tesla S

The Tesla Model S, a luxuriously appointed sedan, is creating a clear case of “range envy” among other e-car makers. With its own, proprietary battery design and rapidly expanding fast charging network, Tesla has achieved a range of 265 miles per charge and a super re-charging time from empty to full in about 20 minutes. This means you can travel from San Diego to Santa Barbara and still have enough battery life left to go shopping and out to dinner before the need to re-charge.

In addition, Tesla’s next car, the P85D, will have two motors and all-wheel drive, giving it rocket-like quickness off the starting line, equal to the McLaren F1 and a slightly farther driving range of 275 miles per charge over the current rear-wheel-drive Model S. For those who prefer safety over high performance, the new Tesla Model S will have an “auto-pilot” feature that allows the car to automatically avoid danger and come close to driving itself. (Starting MSRP: $71,070 to $120,170).

BMW i3
The maker of the “ultimate driving machine” has been flirting with electric power for quite some time, and finally is delivering the all-new BMW i3 hatchback that boasts 170 horsepower and a range of up to 110 miles on an electric charge.


BMW i3

The i3 is a brand new model to the BMW family sporting a unique design that is sure to turn heads in any parking lot. The sensually curved hatchback is so striking that it collected two of the most prestigious international awards soon after its market launch: the World Car Design of the Year Award as well as the World Green Car Award for 2014.

And while the i3 can be recharged in just about 3.5 hours, BMW recently added a range extender motor option for 2015, a two-gallon on-board gasoline motorcycle engine that kicks in to assist in recharging the batter when it hits a certain (low) level. This option extends the range of the i3 to about 150 miles before a full re-charge is needed. (Starting MSRP: $41,350; rage extender: $3,950). Check out our test drive video here.

Mercedes B-Class Electric

Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric
For those desiring to include a second e-vehicle to their garage, the Mercedes B-Class Electric Drive fills the need for an efficient around town commuter, perfect for dropping the kids off at school, trips to the golf course or shopping with friends, all without sipping a single drop of gasoline. The B-Class, which rolls into limited U.S. markets in 2015, is a practical, yet luxurious five-door crossover that can accommodate people and packages as well as any small SUV, yet can travel up to 85 miles on a single charge.

Inside, the B-Class is all Mercedes with premium features befitting a Benz, including hand-finished leather and wood, driving assists that watch your blind spot, prevent collisions and even allow you to park your car hands-free. (Starting MSRP: $41,450)

2015 Soul EV

2015 Kia Soul EV

Other fully-electric cars currently on the market include the Kia Soul EV, Nissan LEAF, Chevrolet Spark EV, Fiat 500e, Ford Focus Electric, Mitsubishi i-MiEV, Smart Electric, Toyota RAV4 EV, Honda Fit EV, and the Volkswagen E-Golf. All of these models achieve between 80-100 miles per battery charge, making them best for short-to-medium commutes and daily driving duties. If your needs carry you further afield, then you might want to consider a plug-in hybrid.

So pack up your bags and hit the road, and be sure to smile as you watch your last gas station fade into the past. Go electric!

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Go green young man! Women favor men who drive green cars, study finds

2013 Nissan LEAFA study by Mother Nature Network, as reported in Green Car Reports, finds yet another reason that men should be choosing fuel-efficient green cars over gas-guzzling horsepower.

Ditch the Ferrari and go green, young man!

Forget Red Ferraris; It’s Green Cars Men Should Drive To Attract Women.

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FedEx adding electric trucks; Tesla S delivering soon

There’s a lot of activity in the electric vehicle market these days and Green Family Car wants to share it with the world. Here is today’s Green Car Recharge:

From the San Francisco Chronicle:

FedEx hopes electric trucks will deliver savings

ImageThe Memphis company will deploy 34 electric trucks in the Bay Area this year and will roll out another 53 elsewhere in the country. Some are already here, at a distribution facility in Menlo Park.

The trucks, made by Navistar International Corp. and Smith Electric Vehicles, have a battery range of 100 miles – bad for rural routes but perfect for the Bay Area’s dense street grid.

Read more  

And from the Los Angeles Times:

Tesla to start deliveries of Model S electric cars next month

ImageTesla Motors Inc. said it will begin delivering its first mass production electric car -– the high-end Model S to customers starting June 22, about a month ahead of the expected schedule.

The Palo Alto-based company says it has more than 10,000 orders for the battery-powered car but that not all will be delivered this year.


And from Automotive News:

Ford is shipping Focus Electric to dealers

DETROIT (Reuters) — Ford Motor Co. started shipping its first electric passenger car to dealers this past weekend, people familiar with the matter told Reuters.

ImageAbout 350 Focus Electric cars will be sent to 67 dealers in California, New Jersey and New York over the next couple weeks. Manufacturing executives signed off on the decision on Friday.

Each dealer will get about six cars, one of which will be a demonstration model, the people said.

Read more

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The future of electric transportation is on display at EVS26

Toyota and Tesla teamed together to make the biggest announcement at today’s Electric Vehicle Symposium (EVS26) at the Los Angeles Convention Center.

Here’s a portion of the press release from Toyota:

LOS ANGELES (May 7, 2012) — Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc. today revealed the highly anticipated all-new Toyota RAV4 EV at the 26th annual Electric Vehicle Symposium in Los Angeles. This all-electric SUV has an expected driving range rating of approximately 100 miles and charging time of approximately six hours on a 240V/40A charger. The RAV4 EV’s driving performance, dynamics and cargo capacity are equal to or exceed the gas powered RAV4 V6. Arriving fully-equipped with an MSRP of $49,800 the RAV4 EV doesn’t compromise on performance, comfort or versatility.
This marks Toyota’s first entry into the all-electric vehicle market after achieving such tremendous success in the hybrid market with the Prius, the Prius V and the Prius C as well as the Prius Plug-In hybrid vechile coming on the market this year. According to Toyota’s Bob Carter, the RAV4 EV will be built in Fremont, California at the former New United Motor Manufacturing, Inc. (NUMMI) plant that was established as a joint venture in 1984 to manufacture vehicles to be sold under both brands.
“It’s all about blending the best of two worlds,” said Bob Carter, group vice president and general manager of the Toyota division. “The all-new RAV4 EV marries the efficiency of an EV with the versatility of a small SUV – in fact, it is the only all-electric SUV on the market.”

The RAV4 EV is the product of a unique collaboration with Tesla Motors spurred by Akio Toyoda, president and CEO of Toyota Motor Corporation. Twenty-two months after the project announcement, Toyota and Tesla engineers have succeeded in bringing an outstanding product to market in record time.

Tesla is also set to roll out its new all-electrfic model “S” sedan sometime this summer.

Among the other highlights of EVS26 is the introduction of a plan to create an “E Highway” where electric trucks will can drive in specific lanes that have electric wires above the lane to power the truck and a large battery pack that powers the vehicle when it is out of the electric lane.

The plan, introduced by global energy powerhouse Siemens, could eventually eliminate the smelly, fuel-hogging diesel trucks that move freight from the ships docked in the port of Los Angeles up the 110 freeway to distribution points throughout the city.

That plan is welcomed by Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who accepted the Electric Vehicle Visionary Award for the City of Los Angeles in the morning session kicking off EVS26.


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Toyota to introduce RAV4 EV next week at EVS26

The  26th International Electric Vehicle Symposium (EVS26) in Los Angeles, May 6-9, just got a huge public relations  boost today when Toyota announced that it will introduce the new Toyota RAV4 (Electric Vehicle (EV), the company’s first all-electric vehicle.

The RAV4 EV is the first model to come out of  Toyota’s partnership with Tesla, the start-up electric vehicle manufacturer led by world famous entrepreneur Elon Musk. Tesla has sold more than 2,100 of its Roadster model electric sports cars and is rolling out the new Tesla S sedan this summer. Tesla has also provided battery electric powertrains to Mercedes-Benz and Smart.

Next week’s announcement should shine a little more light on Toyota’s plans for where it will sell the RAV4 first and what the price tag will be. But one thing is certain, with a name like Toyota behind it, the RAV4 EV is sure to get some attention from the multitudes of happy Prius owners already on the road.

GreenFamilyCar will be at the EVS 26 and will bring updates from the show.

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Green news for families – Tesla plans all-electric SUV

In Los Angeles this week, Tesla made an announcement that all green-friendly families will enjoy — a new, all-electric, seven passenger sport utility vehicle is on its way. The pioneering electric car manufacturer for the luxury segment will base the family friendly e-van on the same platform as the Tesla S sedan model that is due out in mid-2012.

This new electric model is bound to create a stir, not just because it’s electric, but because of its wings. Tesla’s designers took a big step forward by going back in time to replicate the “Gull Wings” of the DeLorean DMC-12 from the 1980s. Tesla prefers to call them “Falcon Wings.”

Whatever bird you want to call them, the wings look pretty cool and are sure to draw attention from the carpool crowd.

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The talk around the Chicago Auto Show is once again centering on the benefits of electric vehicles. There’s the fuel savings, of course, by not having to purchase gasoline at ever-fluctuating rates; and the environmental benefits are certainly palpable when you consider the lack of emissions for electric vehicles.

But the drawbacks of e-cars are also at issue. Battery safety and lifespan are evolving technologies and often leave potential customers contentedly on the sidelines until proven systems are available.

The vehicle’s range is another concern for customers who are not accustomed to “filling up” at shopping malls and public parking lots rather than gas stations on every corner.

It’s this last concern — “Range Anxiety and searching for e-charging stations — that the Chicago Tribune focuses on in its kickoff coverage of the Chicago Auto Show. Writer Julie Wernau tells the story of an electric car enthusiast who is thrilled to start seeing more e-cars charging up at electric outlets all over the city, including laundromats, hotels, churches and even gas stations.

“Any given week there are more electric vehicles wanting to charge than there are charging stations,” he said. “This is my nirvana. These are the days I’ve wanted to see for the last 10 years.”

But if there’s a full-blown revolution coming, it isn’t here yet. While the hybrid market is growing, in 2012 it comprises just 2.46 percent of the overall market. Electric vehicle sales represent less than 1 percent, according to industry watcher

“We’re in the covered-wagon days of this industry,” said Michelle Krebs, a senior analyst with Edmunds. “We’re in a pioneering time.”

Here’s the full story from the Chicago Tribune.

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