US automakers firmly on track to meet EPA fuel-economy goals

EV lovers may consider this good news or bad, but the US auto industry is making better progress than expected toward meeting the EPA’s long-term fuel-economy standards, as Ward’s Auto reported this week (via Green Car Reports). “Innovations are coming at us faster than originally anticipated,” says Michael Olechiw, Director of the EPA’s Light-Duty Vehicle… Read more »

Renault-Nissan expands cooperation with Mitsubishi, may develop EV

Nissan and Mitsubishi have agreed to expand their current partnership, and could jointly develop an EV. The two companies already work together to build the little egg-shaped Kei cars (of which the Mitsubishi i-MiEV is one example) for the Japanese market. They now plan to develop vehicles for sale abroad, with Mitsubishi introducing two sedans… Read more »

Research team uses MRI to examine the inner workings of supercapacitors

A team of chemists from New York University and the University of Cambridge has developed a method for examining the inner workings of supercapacitors. Their technique, based on magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), offers a way to monitor and possibly enhance the performance of such devices. The work, which appears in the latest issue of the… Read more »

Mercedes S 500 Plug-In Hybrid goes on sale

Mercedes-Benz has begun taking orders for the S 500 Plug-In Hybrid. Prices (in Germany) start at €108,944 ($146,000). The new sedan will begin arriving at dealerships in September. The plug-in Benz features an 85 kW, 340 N·m electric motor and a new 245 kW, 480 N·m, 3.0-liter biturbo V6 gas engine. Combined system output is… Read more »

Ultracap maker Skeleton Technologies raises €3.9 million in round A funding

Skeleton Technologies, a European manufacturer of ultracapacitor technology, has completed Round A financing of €3.9 million ($5.4 million). The funds will be used to scale up production, for product development, and for sales and marketing efforts. Skeleton Technologies manufactures SkelCap ultracapacitor cells, which are available in ranges from 250 F to 3500 F, as well… Read more »

Fraunhofer Institute develops front-end wireless charging system

Most wireless EV charging systems use an induction coil on the underside of the vehicle and a floor-mounted charging station, but researchers at the Fraunhofer Institute for Integrated Systems and Device Technology (IISB) in Germany are developing an alternative method that makes the connection at the front end of the vehicle. This addresses a number… Read more »

Four British-built electric buses hit the streets of London

Four British-built pure electric buses went into service in London this week. The MetroCity single-deck buses were manufactured by Optare, part of the Hinduja Group, based in North Yorkshire, and will be operated on a trial basis on route H98 between Hayes and Hounslow. Manufacturer’s tests demonstrated that, while the initial cost of these vehicles… Read more »

Leviton launches new 40-amp EV Charge Connector Assembly

Leviton has introduced a new 40-amp EV Charge Connector Assembly. The J1772-compliant connector assembly was designed for the Leviton Evr-Green family of EV chargers, and is rated at 40 amps of current or 9.7 kW of power. According to the company, it is designed to address an emerging trend for EVs to use larger on-board chargers. The… Read more »

Siemens developing a centralized computing architecture for EVs

Siemens, in partnership with EV manufacturer StreetScooter, is developing a centralized computing architecture for EVs that will make it possible to retrofit new features using a “plug-and-play” process, and to push software updates to vehicles as is currently done with smartphones (and Tesla vehicles). The RACE (Robust and Reliable Automotive Computing Environment for Future eCars)… Read more »