AFS Trinity prototype SUV - Click above for high-res gallery

You all remember AFS Trinity, right? They're the group that can't say "150 mpg" too many times. Back in January, AFS Trinity applied for a some of the $2.5 billion loans that the DOE was handing out through the advanced technology vehicle program in order to purchase and retool an existing but closed auto plant. AFS representatives were in Washington, D.C. recently showing off their modified Saturn VUE plug-in hybrids to Congresspeople and their staff members, giving them a chance to see the 16 kWh lithium battery packs and ultracapacitors in action. This is at least the second time that the AFS Trinity vehicles have made an appearance in D.C., good news for fans of the company and their idea to blend the two energy storage systems. From the sound of it, a blogger for the New York Times was able to check out the PHEVs in person, but didn't write anything about a test ride. We can learn from the article that AFS Trinity hopes to get $40 million from the DOE for starters. This would be enough for 100 cars. The second step would be $200 million for a thousand more vehicles. Finally, AFS Trinity CEO Edward Furia told the NYT, $1.3 billion would be used to retool an old GM plant and build "hundreds of thousands of plug-in hybrids" that could be sold for just $8,000 more than the non-hybrid versions.

[Source: NYT]

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