Should We Expect An Apple Car or Not?

Should We Expect An Apple Car or Not? So what do you reckon? When the autonomous all-electric 2021 Apple car is launched at Tesla-style Apple boutique stores, will it come in silver, gold, and space gray? Will 400 miles range be enough for you?
Or are your eyes already starting to roll because you’re one of those who are coming to doubt the notion that whatever Apple is doing on an automotive project, it’s not in this area to dive headlong into car manufacturing sales and distribution?
Since an in-depth Feb. 13 Wall Street Journal report by Daisuke Wakabayashi and Mike Ramsey laid out the case on why we could possibly see an Apple car, the Internet has seen a frenzy of speculation on the thought.
Since no one knows, and Apple isn’t saying, what’s with this ongoing guesswork? Part of it is there are more than a few clues that could lend to a credible theory on why Apple would – or would not – enter the car making business.
What are these? Let’s take a look at just some of the reasons for the conjecture on: 1) Why Apple could be entering the car business as a vehicle producer, or 2) Why there’s no way Apple is entering the car manufacturing business.
Reasons In Favor Read more

Will President Obama Finally Stop The Keystone XL Pipeline?

Will President Obama Finally Stop The Keystone XL Pipeline? President Barack Obama vetoed the Keystone XL Pipeline earlier this week, but that doesn’t mean the debate over the 1,179-mile oil pipeline has finished.
Next go go for the president is to finally choose whether or not KXL is in the country’s national interest, and then make his final choice. His veto, he clarified, stalls the project, but environmentalists and others are looking to see where this will finally lead.
“Through this bill, the United States Congress attempts to circumvent longstanding and proven processes for determining whether or not building and in commission a cross-border pipeline serves the national interest,” Obama told the Senate in a letter accompanying his veto.
“The Presidential power to veto legislation is one I take seriously.
“But I also take seriously my responsibility to the American public. And because this act of Congress conflicts with established executive branch procedures and cuts small thorough consideration of issues that could bear on our national interest – including our security, safety, and environment – it has earned my veto.”
Demonstrators hold a rally against the Keystone XL pipeline outside of the White House in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Saturday, Jan. 10, 2015. The Keystone XL pipeline has become a proxy for debates in this area global warming, jobs and energy security. Republicans who now control both houses of Congress have vowed to make approval of the pipeline one of their first pieces of legislation this year, a go the Obama administration opposes. Photographer: Pete Marovich/Bloomberg
This is only the third time Obama has vetoed a bill during his presidency.
SEE ALSO: White House Seeking Expanded $10,000 Alternative Vehicle Discount
While Obama doesn’t offer any additional explanation with his veto letter, he did for a small time talk in this area the Keystone project in his inauguration speech last month:
“Twenty-first century businesses need 21st century infrastructure – modern ports, and stronger bridges, quicker trains and the fastest Internet. Democrats and Republicans used to agree on this.
“So let’s set our sights higher than a release oil pipeline. Let’s pass a bipartisan infrastructure plot that could start more than 30 times as many jobs per year, and make this country stronger for decades to come.”
U.S. House Speaker John Boehner, a Republican from Ohio, center, speaks during an conscription ceremony before signing the Keystone XL Pipeline Approval Act (S.1) with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican from Kentucky, from left, Senator John Hoeven, a Republican from North Dakota, Boehner, Representative Kristi Noem, a Republican from South Dakota, and Representative Kevin Cramer, a Republican from North Dakota, at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Friday, Feb. 13, 2015. Congressional Republicans achieved an elusive legislative goal Wednesday, sending a bill to approve the Keystone XL pipeline to President Barack Obama. The U.S. House passed the measure 270-152, with 29 Democrats joining all but one Republican to support the bill. Photographer: Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Since TransCanada first filed an application for a cross-border permit in 2008, the project has become heavily politicized, with passions in succession high on both sides.
“The Keystone XL pipeline has come to represent much more than a link between Canada’s oil sands and world markets,” said a record by Carrie Halperin and Emily B. Hager with The New York Times.
“It’s now been five years of protests, Congressional votes and growing polarization. Even while the project itself will have limited environmental and economic impression.” Read more

Second-Gen Audi R8 e-tron EV Gets 280 Miles Range

Second-Gen Audi R8 e-tron EV Gets 280 Miles Range As part of the second-generation family lineup to debut ahead of schedule Development in Geneva, Audi’s R8 e-tron boasts nearly 280 miles range in Europe, 678 pounds-feet of torque, and 0-62 in 3.9 seconds.
A Tesla Model P85D by contrast promises an EPA-rated 253 miles range, 0-62 mph (0-100 kph) in 3.4 seconds, and 864 pounds-feet torque, but the Audi is more than a spec sheet, and promises to be something special in its own aptly.
Based on a car (pictured) that in mid-engine V10 gas form combines aluminum and carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP) in an “Audi Space Frame,” the automaker says no other Audi is quicker to motorsports ready than the R8.
With a wide, low and muscular visage, the R8 gets laser high beam headlights augmenting its LED lighting. Surrounded by are digital displays.
Whether the 279.6 miles range estimate works out to be as high on the U.S. EPA cycle is also in inquiry but it may be within the 208-265 mile span of the Model S line up.
It’s the gas version that has automotive enthusiasts excited. Horsepower rises to as much a 610 in a 185,000 euro trim level, 0-62 for the gas-version is 3.2 seconds, and top speed is 205.1 mph. Images indicates most of what to expect in the e-tron.
It’s also, of course, a different style of car, and the sports sports car Audi with new battery is itself an evolved product.
The original car had half the range, and Audi initially shelved the vehicle before announcing new battery chemistry could get its range to where customers would accept it.
As it is now, we’ve seen nothing from Audi signifying it will compete with Tesla on volume, but rather the contrary, and this unique limited-productiomn halo will have exclusivity while promising powerful sure-footed performance.
The new R8 lineup is produced at a specially built production gift called the “Böllinger Höfe” site in Heilbronn.
“An elaborate manufacturing technique ensures that Audi-typical quality is produced,” says Audi.
Pricing for the V10 gas-powered version starts at 165,000 euros ($186,000) when deliveries start this spring, but the e-tron’s price was not announced.

We were also found by phrases: Read more

Professors: Stimulate Sales With Taxes Instead Of Subsidies

Professors: Stimulate Sales With Taxes Instead Of Subsidies To stimulate the electrified vehicle market, the White House has developed a mixture of rebates and subsidies.
But this may not be the most effective tactic, according to a pair of business management professors.
Anton Ovchinnikov, associate professor at the sovereign’s School of Business in Kingston, Ontario, Canada, and Gal Raz, associate professor at the University of Virginia Darden School of Business laid out their thought in the Washington Post.
They also recently published their in-depth analysis in the journal IEEE Transactions on Engineering Management.
“Crafty incentive schemes for green technology adoption requires a comprehensive understanding of how firms and patrons will respond to them,” Ovchinnikov and Raz said.
Under the current key, a $7,500 tax discount was existing to patrons buying plug-in and electric vehicles. To support President Obama’s goal of reach 1 million electrified vehicles by the end of the year, legislators were also questioned to change this end-of-the-year tax credit into a discount that could be applied at the time of sale.
In addition, programs were made to offer $2 billion in subsidies directly to manufacturers.
SEE ALSO: White House Seeking Expanded $10,000 Alternative Vehicle Discount
The problem, wrote the professors, is that subsidies generated extra risk for the government while making a vague plot for the automakers.
“A subsidy affects manufacturers directly, by reducing costs,” said Ovchinnikov and Raz.
“Subsidies alone could be inefficient because they may cause governments to take a disproportionate risk in overproducing electric vehicles.
“For automakers such as GM … it was unclear how much room to dedicate to production and how to price the Volt for most profitability.”
The business professors’ proposal still includes subsidies and rebates, but tweaks the model slightly. Instead of offering a subsidy to manufactures, Ovchinnikov and Raz said negative subsidy – essentially a tax – removes unnecessary risk from the government and saves tax dollars.
“The more cars are sold, the higher the cost of the … program,” Ovchinnikov and Raz said in this area the current subsidies.
Even though the approach could better promote the electrified vehicle market, Ovchinnikov and Raz recognized that passing a tax on manufactures would be “hard to do from a biased standpoint.”
If a tax couldn’t be implemented, using only a consumer discount would be nearly as beneficial.
“The optimal approach would be to combine a discount with a negative subsidy; i.e. an additional tax on manufacturers,” said Ovchinnikov and Raz.
But without that, “the discount-only incentive that is provided by the government for electric vehicles (such as Chevy Volt), while structurally suboptimal, seems efficient and much simpler to implement politically.”

We were also found by phrases: Read more

Northeast Plans for 10,800 Fuel Cell Vehicles In Next 10 Years

Northeast Plans for 10,800 Fuel Cell Vehicles In Next 10 Years A development project in the Northeastern U.S. released a new plot for zero emission vehicles in the region that includes adding 10,800 hydrogen-powered vehicles to the roads.
New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Maine, Rhode Island, Vermont, New Hampshire and New Jersey make up the region. Each state has its own individual outline as part of the plot.
The Northeast Electrochemical Energy Storage Cluster (NEESC) developed the recommendations with the intent of promoting fuel cell technology in the region. NEESC is a project administered by the Connecticut Center for Advanced Technologies.
This plot comes two years after a Memorandum of Understanding was signed by the eight states requiring generous auto manufacturers to sell 3.3 million zero emission vehicles in the area. Both FCV and all-electric vehicles were included in the supplies, with target dates set between 2018 and 2015.
SEE ALSO: California Opens Its First Retail Hydrogen Station
“Hydrogen and fuel cell projects are apt increasingly well loved throughout the Northeast region,” said NEESC. “These technologies are viable solutions that can meet the demand for clean and renewable energy.”
Additional region-wide goals in the NEESC recommendation include adding 640 fuel cell-powered buses, 110 hydrogen refueling stations and making 1,300 megawatts of fuel cell electric generation.
The chain reaction from reaching these goals, said NEESC, will lead to the creation of jobs in the supply chain, a decrease in FCV manufacturing costs and the development of a technology better suited to compete in the global market.
Overall, NEESC said these eight states will benefit both environmentally and economically.
“The Northeast hydrogen and fuel cell diligence, while still emerging, now has an economic impression exceeding $1 billion in total revenue and investment,” stated NEESC.

We were also found by phrases: Read more

Texas Lawmakers Make Second Attempt To Legalize Tesla Sales

Texas Lawmakers Make Second Attempt To Legalize Tesla Sales Texas lawmakers are debating a set of bills that would allow Tesla to sell its electric vehicles directly to Texans.
The proposal has been sent to state legislators under two different bills. Reps. Eddie Rodriguez, Jodie Laubenberg, Rod Simmons and Tan Parker co-authored House Bill 1653. Sen. Kelly Hancock sponsored a second and identical proposition, State Bill 639.
If the bills pass, car manufacturers will be able to receive a dealer’s ticket and sell vehicles directly to customers, but there are a few caveats.
First, the carmaker must have by no means sold vehicles in Texas before using a franchise dealership. In addition, the law only allows the manufacturer to open up to 12 stores in the state.
“Free market principles are the foundation of our strong Texas economy,” said Sen. Hancock. The bill “helps sustain a competitive marketplace and gives patrons more choices.”
The majority of Texans agree. After 1,200 adults were surveyed last month in this area buying a car from the manufacturer, 84-percent support the thought.
SEE ALSO: Letter To Legislators From 10 Organizations Backs Tesla Against Dealers
And they aren’t alone. Earlier this month, 10 organizations signed a letter in support of Tesla-direct sales. The letter, which included endorsement by Sierra Club and the Koch brothers, was sent to state leaders and governors around the country.
“Tesla’s market entry through direct distribution is providing patrons with beneficial new choices on what vehicles they buy and how they buy them,” said the groups in the letter. “Moreover, our concerns are not limited to Tesla, as these laws have similarly negative effects on any company seeking to distribute their cars directly to patrons.”
Despite support from these organizations and even the majority of constituents, the opposition isn’t wavering.
SEE ALSO: Tesla Gets Plotting Commission Approval for San Antonio Store
“It is a terrible thought for our state,” said Bill Wolters, president of the Texas Automobile Dealers Association.
“When you buy a product from a retail outlet owned by a California corporation, 100 percent of proceeds from the sale go to California. Nothing goes to Texas. There’s no real benefit for our state.
“[Auto dealers are] a part of the convergence. They focus on customers, employees and their town because they want to be there for generations,” said Wolters.
Two years ago, a similar bill was sent to Texas lawmakers, but wasn’t able to gain enough support to pass. If the current HB 1653 and SB 639 do not pass, Tesla will have to wait another two years when the legislature reconvenes in 2017.
Automotive News

We were also found by phrases: Read more

2016 Mitsubishi i-MiEV Arrives In March

2016 Mitsubishi i-MiEV Arrives In March Mitsubishi is introducing the 2016 version of its i-MiEV small electric vehicle to the U.S. market and specifications and pricing were told yesterday.
Yes, Mitsubishi has jumped a year in the distribution of the i-MiEV, going strait to offering 2016 models next month while the 2014 model is now listed on its website as still being on offer. From the modest information we could gather, the 2016 model is identical to the 2014 model aside from different equipment combinations.
Set to arrive in dealerships towards the end of Development 2015, the electric vehicle’s MSRP will start at $22,995, which is incidentally the same price as the 2014 version; this price goes down to $15,495 when taking into account the Federal tax credit of $7,500.
SEE ALSO: 2014 Mitsubishi i-MiEV Cheaper And Better Equipped
At this price the vehicle comes with heated driver and adjoin passenger seats, remote keyless entry and heated side mirrors.
For those wanting more, a new Navigation Package is available including a MMCS navigation system with 7-in. touchscreen show, real-time traffic, 3D mapping and Mapcare, Bluetooth hands-free phone system, USB port and rear view camera.
Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc. backs the i-MiEV with a fully-transferable 8-year/100,000-mile limited warranty for the lithium-ion main drive battery pack as well as a 5-year/60,000-mile powertrain limited warranty.
The 2014 Mitsubishi i-MiEV is now rated at 112 MPGe. We can expect a similar rating for the 2016 version.

We were also found by phrases: Read more