In Episode 1.1 of Translogic, we went behind the scenes at Tesla Motors, the upstart electric car manufacturer. While Tesla's revolutionary electric sports car has generated a huge buzz, the big auto companies have two key models of their own set to launch later this year. The Chevy Volt plug-in hybrid and the Nissan Leaf electric both promise owners green bragging rights over even the most sanctimonious Prius driver. Interest among young people is understandably huge, and the marketing campaign
Buried in the health car reform legislation is a mention of a paper-making byproduct known as "black liquor." This substance, a wood-pulping byproduct, is utilized as a biofuel to generate electricity for paper-making companies throughout the U.S. Up until now, companies utilizing this black substance could claim a hefty tax credit related to the use of biofuels for production purposes.
Biodiesel has had a tough time of it lately. By the end of 2009 the economy was in the crapper, exports to Europe had withered under heavy tariffs and the price of gasoline and petroleum diesel fuel had dropped substantially from their peak the year before. The finishing move came in December when the $1.00 per gallon tax credit for biodiesel producers expired. FATALITY!
2011 Chevrolet Volt – Click above for high-res image gallery
Know the difference between a tax rebate and a tax credit? They may seem like the same thing – paying fewer taxes – but there's a big difference. A credit is something you get back when you file your taxes and a rebate, in this case an instant cash rebate, is money you'd get back when you buy the item. A new electric car, for example.
Last year, BorgWarner and Robert Bosch LLC founded the U.S. Coalition for Advanced Diesel Cars. For the first anniversary party, the group is present in the EDTA advanced technology section of the Washington Auto Show to announce three new menbers – Tenneco, Dow Automotive and Umicore – and to explain that the latest diesel vehicles are clean, available today and need to stop being the ignored child in federal green vehicle policy.
The U.S. federal government has put a lot of money into clean car companies this past year, including about $8.5 billion through U.S. Department of Energy's Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing Program (Ford got $5.9 billion, Nissan $1.6 billion, Fisker Automotive $528.7 million, and Tesla Motors $465 million) and another $2+ billion for advanced batteries (some say it was more than that). There may be more coming down the pike.
Darryl Siry, who once worked for Tesla Motors and currently advises Coda Automotive with their all-electric sedan, has started writing for WIRED's Autopia blog. In his first post out of the gate, Siry leaves technical EV details aside and suggests some policy changes. Siry wants enhancements to the federal government's offer of up to $7,500 tax credits for plug-in hybrid and battery electric vehicles, saying that the tax credits should be turned into instant rebates instead. This won't cost the
As part of the sweeping changes being made through various pieces of legislation floating through the U.S. Senate and Congress, fully electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles will soon be eligible for tax credits, including those with two or three wheels. One benefactor to this legislation is Zero Motorcycles, a company that already has one electric off-road motorcycle on the market and has plans to introduce a new road-going version this spring. That new model, known as the Zero S Supermoto, will b
There were good and bad receptions to President Obama's move earlier this week to push the EPA to rethink the California waiver decision (details here). GM released a very short statement that said they were "ready to engage the Obama administration and the Congress" on this topic (read the whole thing after the jump). The Progressive Auto X Prize praised Obama's opening the door to California setting its own standards greenhouse-gas emissions.
If you're the Ned Flanders type who just loves to get your taxes done early, we've got the post for you. The IRS has prepared a document on the changes to the tax code that biodiesel and cellulosic biofuel producers need to be aware of. If you know that ASTM D 6751 biodiesel standard was revised, but don't know what the revision means for you, then you should download the paper (PDF).
click for more images of the 2009 Toyota Prius
When automakers are throwing thousands of dollars of incentives on the hoods of their wares in an effort to stimulate sales, what good would another $1,500 on a $25,000 car do? As the recent sales numbers show, buyers aren't being taken in by the constant sounding of the "SELL SELL SELL!" klaxon. Great deals on new cars are out there to be had, if only anyone had some money.
At meeting this week at Michigan State University on "green collar job" creation, Governor Jennifer Granholm floated the idea of state income tax credits for residents that buy hybrid or electric cars. While the IRS and a variety of states already offer similar incentives, it's unlikely that Michigan will be able to offer anything unless they stipulate that the cars must be built in the state. In that case the number of qualifying vehicles would be ... ZERO. At this time none of the available hy
The John McCain presidential campaign has started running a new TV ad in Michigan that simultaneously tries to pander to everyone. Earlier this year, while campaigning in the primaries, he told voters in Michigan and Ohio that "those (manufacturing) jobs aren't coming back." In that bygone era of six months ago, McCain was opposed to any kind of protection for American businesses from free trade policies. Now the new ad proclaims support for federal loans to help automakers re-tool to build more