A new video explains the second-generation Voltec drivetrain in the 2016 Chevrolet Volt. The new Volt uses two planetary gear sets, a big difference from the first-gen Volt, which used just one. This opens up a multitude of various drive modes, and allows the engine to drive the wheels as well as the motor-generators. See the video above for the full, in-depth explanation, and read more at GM Authority.

Coal power plants need to be retired to achieve air quality benefits from EVs. According to a study, EVs charged in coal-heavy regions produce more lifecycle emissions than gasoline vehicles. Depending on when they're charged, EVs with high-capacity batteries can be responsible for two to three times the amount of emissions as a hybrid car. In the near future, though, as coal plants are retired, this is expected to change. "When EV charging load is added to a power system, wind and solar plant output can't be turned up to respond because they are typically already fully utilized," says Jeremy Michalek, Professor of Engineering and Public Policy and Mechanical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon University. "Fossil fuel plants are the ones dispatched in response to new charging load. That's why the shift away from coal is so important for EVs." Read more at Green Car Congress.

Tata has debuted the Magic Iris Ziva fuel-cell microvan at AutoExpo India. Replacing the Magic Iris' single-cylinder engine with a hydrogen-powered unit gives the Ziva 5 kW (6.7 hp) of power for normal driving, with a maximum output of 9 kW (12 hp) and 31 lb-ft of torque. It has room for five passengers, and features an eight-inch touchscreen display. Learn more at Green Car Reports.


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