The heart of the matter is that the battery-electric Kia Soul is better for the environment. And not just because it doesn't create any emissions while on the road. From beginning to end, the Soul EV has a far lower environmental impact than its more conventional counterparts.
Mercedes-Benz drivers and treehuggers don't always go hand in hand, but, like a lot of other companies, the German automaker is looking to boost its green cred. This time, it's all about the car's lifecycle carbon footprint. The Daimler AG unit is using its new C-Class sedan as an example of how it's making progress in that department.
By now we're all aware that the environmental impact of cars and trucks goes well beyond the emissions produced during operation. There is the energy used to produce and dispose of the vehicles and their components, for example, and the cost of getting the fuel for the vehicles out of the ground and into the tank. The impact of making nickel metal hydride batteries for hybrid and electric vehicles (EVs) was the center-piece of a controversial study published by CNW several years ago. That study
With the 458 Italia, Calfornia, 612 Scaglietti, 599 GTB Fiorano and numerous derivations thereof, Ferrari's juggling more distinct models than it has since the days of the 328, Mondial, 412 and Testarossa. So while updating its line-up on an ad-hoc basis has worked for the company previously, Maranello has now revealed a solid product life-cycle scheme that will see a new model revealed every year.
Over the last several years, algae has been seen as the great green hope to make biofuels a truly viable option that wouldn't affect food supplies. In part, this is because algae has the potential to yield up to 100 times as much fuel per acre as soy or corn feedstocks. Unfortunately, progress been slow so far, and a new study by Andres Clarens of the University of Virginia indicates making algae requires much more energy to produce than crops.
In the '80s and '90s, the typical product life-cycle for Japanese vehicles was four years and out. During that time, the bodies typically got a full refresh and most of the underpinnings received evolutionary updates. Automakers based in North America and Europe would typically build essentially the same cars for 6-8 years before a major redesign. Over the last decade Honda and Toyota have stretched out the life-cycles of their mainstream models to five years and other lower volume cars and truc