This week Libyan rebels stormed Col Muammar Gaddafi's Bab al-Azizia compound in Tripoli and seized a number of interesting items. Among them was this custom, doorless, green and gold metallic Fiat 500. It's reported that the Fiat was converted to run on battery power and can achieve a range of 160 miles. Apparently the custom EV 500 is just one of many electric cars owned by the embattled Libyan leader. [ AUTOBLOG GREEN]
Researches at MIT and Princeton University have developed a network of windshield-mounted smartphones that help increase driver efficiency by collecting and relaying traffic signal data. The system is designed to alert drivers when to slow down in order to avoid a fuel-wasting red light sequence (stopping, idling and accelerating burns much more fuel than simply decreasing one's speed). The crowd-sourced fuel savings solution was tested in Cambridge, Massachusetts and led to a 20% decrease in fuel consumption. [ MIT]
The theme of the week seems to be collaboration in the name of creating more efficient vehicles. In addition to the cosponsored university research discussed above, this week has featured announcements from some giant corporate combos like Ford and Toyota teaming on RWD hybrid systems and GM and LG codeveloping electric vehicles. These prominent partnerships suggest that companies see the value--perhaps the necessity--of combining forces in pursuit of a common goal.
Outside of the U.S., Hertz and GE announced a partnership to expand China's EV infrastructure by adding 770 charging stations throughout major Chinese cities. [ GM, FORD, FORBES]
And, of course, be sure to catch this week's episode of TRANSLOGIC before it goes away and hides in our episode archive.
Click the image below to watch TRANSLOGIC 68: Chevy Small-Block Evolution: