Hybrid Cars Gain Notice at Concours d’Elegance

By dancurranjr On March 4th, 2009

fisker-hybridVisitors to the Desert Classic Concours d’Elegance car exhibit Sunday got a reminder that the future of automobiles has roots in the past and present.

The car show featured four electric/hybrid vehicles: a Fisker Karma, a luxury hybrid plug-in sedan; a Ford Escape Hybrid belonging to the Los Angeles County Lifeguards; an Aptera 2e electric; and a 1915 Detroit Electric Broughan Model 61.

“These (cars) are good to have because of the challenges we face these days and the cost of importing oil,” said Paul Merrigan, who founded the Concours d’Elegance with his wife, Holly Merrigan. “I thought, let’s show how far these cars have come.”

Much attention was devoted to the futuristic-looking, three-wheeled Aptera, an electric vehicle that has components made of recycled materials.

“This is almost like a green-friendly car,” said Paul Burns of Seattle, who stopped by to see the car while in town for business.

Promising 100 miles per charge in the city and 100-plus on the highway, the three-wheeler had many smiling at the sticker but shaking their heads over the design.

“What one wonders about these cars is their safety,” Burns said.

Nearby, another crowd gathered around the sleek Fisker Karma.

“A lot of people are interested in when this is coming to market,” said Magdalena Figueroa, client relations and marketing specialist with Fisker Automotive.

Its sticker emphasized power, zero to 60 miles per hour in 7.5 seconds with a top speed of 95 mph — in what the vehicle’s designers called “stealth mode.”

“They are especially interested when they learn it’s a plug-in electric,” she said.

SOURCE: MyDesert.com

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