Entries Tagged 'plug-in' ↓

2013 Ford C-Max Energi Plug-In Hybrid First Drive

With California the most important domestic market for electrified vehicles, it came as no surprise that Ford chose San Francisco and the Northern California coastline as the backdrop for the C-Max Energi Plug-In Hybrid media drive.

The crossover-esque C-Max has been available in Europe since 2003 and comes to our shores for the first time. The C-Max rides on the Focus platform. It’s only available in America in hybrid or plug-in hybrid (PHEV) form.

The standard C-Max hybrid is rated at 47 city / 47 highway miles per gallon (MPG). The C-Max Energi plug-in hybrid uses a larger lithium ion battery to deliver up to 21 miles of pure electric driving, at speeds up to 85 miles per hour, before it switches to conventional hybrid mode.

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Jeep Wrangler Gas Mileage Improvement – SEMA (Part 2)

Our Jeep Wrangler gas mileage improvement project is proceeding, albeit slowly. We headed out to SEMA last month to see what the aftermarket options exist to help squeak an extra mile or two out of a gallon of gas. Lo and behold, we quickly tripped into two very cool alternatives that offer a peek into a domestic energy-independent future.

One thing’s for sure. If you’re serious about improving the fuel economy of your Jeep and have serious money to spend the options are out there. The first article in this series mentioned the HPA Motorsports TDI diesel engine swap. We found another cool diesel swap option while scouring the aisles of SEMA’s off-road exhibit hall at the Bruiser Off-Road booth.

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New Gas Mileage Standard:
54.5 MPG by 2025

Hold onto your hats. The United States Department of Transportation (DOT) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) have finally pulled the curtain on their proposed rule for the Obama Administration’s new gas mileage standard. An average of 54.5 miles per gallon (MPG) by 2025 may seem like a huge leap in a short time, but the numbers are not what they appear.

The 54.5 MPG figure is the EPA number for passenger vehicles, not what you’ll see on the window sticker. It’s a fudge factory powered by greenhouse gas emissions. The automakers will be able to use a range of technology incentives in one place to offset their numbers in another, including flex fuel, hybrid, and electric power trains. In real world terms, we might expect a sticker average of 40 MPG for cars that run on liquid fuel. That’s not all that extraordinary, considering all the cars with gas mileage ratings around 40 MPG highway that we can buy today.

And they wonder why so many Americans are so skeptical of what goes on in Washington.
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2012 Ford Focus Electric Car Debuts

Ford has chosen a different path to electrification of the automobile. While the Nissan Leaf and Chevrolet Volt enjoyed a substantial marketing blitz in the build-up to their debuts, Ford was rather quiet by comparison. (If Jay Leno’s ill-fated prime-time show had not flopped, America would have seen more Stars in an Electric Car). Those in the know might recall that MPGomatic first reported on the low-key/high-result Ford Electric Car efforts way back at the 2009 Detroit Auto Show.

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Automotive X-Prize: Lessons Learned

The Automotive X-Prize competition whittled down a field of thirty-odd (some quite odd) vehicles to just three winners. While propulsion systems and seating plans differ, there are three clear lessons learned. The car of the future will be very light, it will be shaped like a fish, and the body will not be made of steel.

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