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Next B-Class Could Have In-House Battery Pack, 311-Miles Range

The next-gen Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive might have a hugely-increased range, but its drivetrain likely won't be supplied by Tesla.


And Just Look At What You Can Get With Your BMW i8

Apparently, Chevrolet Volt battery covers make suitable homes for bats. As part of an Eagle Scout project, Matthew Netherland created 30 bat houses out of scrapped Volt battery covers donated by Chevy. 22 of the bat houses will be set up near hydroelectric dams in Michigan. Each bat house will accommodate 100 bats, and divert the scrapped materials from the landfill. The battery covers also make great nesting boxes for wood ducks, which General Motors has previously set up at its Milford, Michig


The Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG Coupé Electric Drive may be powered by batteries, but it is a legitimate supercar. It has exotic supercar styling, supercar paint, and a 416,500 Euro ($550,600 at today's rates) supercar price tag. Now, it also has a sub-eight-minute supercar lap time around the Nürburgring Nordschleife.


It's hard to not like the Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG GT. The all-aluminum coupe is fitted with a wonderful naturally aspirated 6.2-liter V8 delivering 583 horsepower and 479 pound-feet of torque. Not only does the burly combustion engine launch the two-seater to 60 miles per hour in less than four seconds, but it does so with one of the world's greatest exhaust soundtracks as it roars, burbles and cackles down the road.


Development of the Mercedes-Benz B-Class Electric Drive is moving along smartly since we first saw the thing in shimmering-blue-concept form at the 2012 Paris Motor Show. Now running about in prototype form, the B-Class ED is having some valuable cold-weather testing done in Sweden, as this box-fresh set of spy shots reveals.


Protean Electric has received noteworthy praise for its unique in-wheel electric drive propulsion system. Car and Driver named it one of the 10 Most Promising Technologies for 2013. This ranking accompanies the publication's 10 Best Cars Celebration, which has existed for more than three decades in the world's largest auto enthusiast magazine.


A philosophical question from your automotive enthusiast future: does a supercar need to make noise in order to be a supercar? The easy answer might be no. If they're more powerful, do everything faster, attract the opposite sex, cost a gang of money and look better in orange than actual oranges, what more are you looking for?


The Mercedes-Benz B-Class is a promising, small family vehicle, but Car and Driver is reporting that the new B-Class is only coming to the U.S. as the zero-emission Electric Drive model. It would appear that if Mercedes does proceed with this plan, it will likely be positioned as a premium alternative to dedicated green family vehicles like Toyota Prius v and Ford C-Max.


Mercedes-Benz showed off a number of alternative fuel B-Class models at the 2012 Paris Motor Show, including the B200 Natural Gas Drive and this machine, the B-Class Electric Drive. Using a 100-kilowatt (134-horsepower) electric motor, the hatch can whir to a top speed of 93 miles per hour and boasts a range of around 124 miles, though presumably not at the same time.


The folks at Mercedes-Benz must have a guilty conscience when it comes to the SLS AMG supercar. Why else would the German automaker follow up the snarling V8-powered debut of the modern gullwing with the SLS AMG E-Cell, and now the SLS AMG Coupe Electric Drive? While the retina-searing E-Cell was a merely prototype, the vehicle you see here is a production version, and can be yours for a cool half a million bucks.


We already knew the next-generation Mercedes-Benz B-Class would be getting an all-electric variant, but instead of wearing the E-Cell name, it shall be dubbed Electric Drive. As a matter of fact, all future electric models from Mercedes-Benz, Smart and AMG will carry the Electric Drive name.


A group of specialist engineering technology firms is set to embark on the development of next-generation electric-drive systems that do not require rare earth metals. UK-based Sevcon will lead the collaborative project that includes Cummins Generator Technologies and Newcastle University's Power Electronics and Drives Research Group to develop traction drive units for use in hybrid, plug-in hybrid and electric-only vehicles.


Swedish automaker Volvo has teamed up with German engineering conglomerate Siemens to jointly advance the development of electric vehicles through an extensive strategic cooperation that will focus on electrical drive technology, electronics and vehicle charging units.


Peraves E-Tracer – Click above for a high-res image gallery


During the Paris Motor Show, Volvo confirmed that the C30 battery electric concept was bound for production. The automaker's first wave of electric C30s are tooling around Sweden, but those are prototype units. The production version, slated for launch to the public in 2013, will undergo a refining process that will apparently lead to a finished product that Volvo chief executive officer Stefan Jacoby claims will "set the standard in the industry." Part of the refining process for the plug-in C3


2010 Toyota Prius – Click above for high-res image gallery


MotoCzysz E1pc – Click above for high-res image gallery


A couple weeks ago, Remy International chief executive officer John Weber offered up his one-sided opinion regarding the shift towards in-house production of vital hybrid and electric vehicle (EV) components. As a discouraged Weber previously remarked:


While plenty of people express interest in having plug-in electric vehicles, the reality is that the market segment where batteries are likely to have their first big impact is in commercial vehicles. Vans like the Ford Transit Connect and Mercedes-Benz Vito are often used by businesses and typically have a relatively small operating radius and limited hours. That makes them well-suited to being plugged in at a central depot at the end of a work day.

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