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The same week that General Motors unveiled the production version of its Volt extended range EV, Honda R&D president Masaaki Kato downplayed the importance of plug-in hybrids, at least in the short term. While GM and Toyota are both developing hybrid vehicles with plug-in capability and a wide array of manufacturers are planning full battery electric vehicles, Honda doesn't believe that battery technology is where it needs to be for plug-in vehicles to be commercially viable. The company bel

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Maybe this is why John McCain is so gung-ho for better automotive batteries. According to a fluffy piece of reporting by Newsweek, the McCain family owns three GEM electric vehicles. Newsweek wanted to find out how many cars each of the two major party presidential candidates owns, and found out that McCain has 13 and Obama just one. As we know, that one vehicle is the 2008 Ford Escape hybrid he traded for his Hemi last year.

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BMW has achieved sales increases in the US for 16 straight years, but that impressive streak is going to end in 2008. BMW USA CEO Jim O'Donnell has decided to stop shipment of 44,000 vehicles destined for the States by the end of this year. The move was made to prevent pushing increased sales in a down market because too many incentives were needed to entice consumers. The weakness of the US Dollar vs. the euro makes high incentives unprofitable. Some vehicles, like the X3, are coming to the US

Remember the DIY Segway that we showed you? The same group of students from MIT and their friends from some area high schools known as the Edgerton Center Summer Engineering Workshop are back at it this year with a new project, an electric kart that has some rather high-tech features built in. Weighing in at 350 lbs. with 36 volts of lead-acid batteries on board, the coolest piece of the e-kart puzzle is the ultracapacitor "boost" mode. That capacitor is also called upon to store extra energy fr

The price for a barrel of Crude for October delivery rose $16.37, or 15.7%, to close at $120.92 by the end of today's trading in New York. Why? There doesn't actually appear to be any one particular reason, with speculation of an improving economy due to the Bush administration's hopeful ability to revitalize the struggling financial sector and overall economy taking top honors. This spike represents the largest ever pricing increase for oil in the history of trading. Most analysts seem to belie

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It's no surprise that Vinod Khosla is a fan of ethanol, but he's long said that it's just a stepping stone to get us off of oil. Still, the man behind Sun Microsystems and lots of ethanol research will give the keynote address at the Algae Biomass Summit in Seattle next month. But Khosla and his venture capital are not 100 percent behind algae biofuels. He told the Wall Street Journal that, "We keep looking at algae. We've looked at one to two dozen plants, haven't yet found economics that work

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The Japanese already have some of the fastest trains in the world and it looks like Kawasaki Heavy Industries is about to give travelers another reason not to get airborne. The new Environmentally Friendly Super Express Train will hit speeds up to 217 mph thanks to a slick shape to slice through the air and lightweight construction. Those same features will help the electrically-powered super-train use less energy. Also contributing to reduced energy consumption is a regenerative braking system

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GM began to counter the rumor and rabble with its Facts and Fiction site. Now they've gone a step further and introduced a video series called The Case for GM. The introduction video is by Christopher Barger, director of global communications technology, telling us that the series is meant to address your questions, and letting us know that the series will provide answers and insight from a large number of GM "team" members.

Senator Lamar Alexander has put his money where his energy policy mouth is and shelled out the $10,000 it costs to have a Prius converted by A123 Systems to a plug-in type hybrid. The senator says he gets 30 miles out of the lithium ion battery before the engine is called upon to do some work. Having only a 5 or 6 mile daily commute, Alexander has burned about half a tank a gas since sometime last July which is just a bit less than his former vehicle, a leased Nissan Maxima, would have burned. O

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After revealing the new generation 7-series earlier this summer, BMW will be showing off the full lineup at the Paris Motor Show including the hybrid version. We knew a 7-series hybrid was coming soon but it had been thought the 7 would use the same Two-Mode hybrid system that will go into the X6. Instead, AutoCar is reporting that the big luxury sedan will use the mild hybrid system that BMW has developed with Daimler. While Mercedes-Benz will pair up the 20 hp electric motor with a 3.5L V6, BM

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When Toyota revealed the tiny city car called the iQ back in March, we were struck by its looks, but didn't think of putting one on display in one of these rooms where everything echoes. But, thanks to a new partnership between Toyota and the Royal College of Art, the iQ has indeed made it from the expo floor to the art gallery. Toyota and the RCA apparently believe that the "revolutionary new iQ is to provide the inspiration for the finest new design talent." And here we thought it would be an

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