Honda’s Next Generation Hybrid PHEV Concept Unveiled

By dancurranjr On November 30th, 2010

Honda’s next-generation hybrid features a two-motor system that continuously moves through three different modes to maximize driving efficiency: all-electric, gasoline-electric and a unique, engine direct-drive mode.

The plug-in hybrid also uses regenerative braking to charge the battery.

It is compatible with daily driving habits, allowing for short, frequent trips in all-electric mode, while providing long-distance driving capability when needed.

In all-electric mode, the vehicle uses a 6kWh lithium-ion battery and a powerful 120 kW electric motor. The all-electric mode achieves a range of approximately 10-15 miles in city driving and a top speed of 62 mph.

Fully recharging the battery will take 2 to 2.5 hours using a 120-volt outlet and 1 to 1.5 hours using a 240-volt outlet.

The vehicle can also run in a gasoline-electric hybrid mode, the platform features a fuel-efficient 2.0-liter, i-VTEC® inline 4-cylinder, Atkinson cycle engine, paired with an electric Continuously Variable Transmission (E-CVT). An onboard generator adds to the battery powering the electric motor.

For more efficient high-speed cruising, the vehicle can engage in a direct-drive mode, in which only the engine drives the front wheels.

Calling Your Car from Your Smartphone

By dancurranjr On January 15th, 2010

Hello hybrid, this is your driver calling.

In a move that makes remote car starters seem so – well, last decade – Chevrolet will be giving owners of its new Volt hybrid a direct line to their new cars via their smartphones.

Chevrolet and OnStar announced the new smartphone application in Las Vegas, where the Consumer Electronics Show is getting underway.

The application lets drivers carry out of a range of tasks, using Motorola’s Droid, Apple’s iPhone or the Blackberry Storm. Besides the usual open doors remotely, it displays the charge status of the car, lets drivers start charging or schedule charge timing, shows the miles per gallon usage and other monitoring info.

OnStar features like unlocking doors and remote operation of the horn and lights, which have only been available by calling the OnStar call centre, will be available through the smartphone application.

While production of the Volt isn’t due to begin until late this year, demonstration applications for the Motorola Droid and Blackberry Storm and the iPhone are available now. A car that you plug in overnight to recharge, the Volt is an electric hybrid designed to drive up to 64 kilometres (40 miles) on electricity, after which an engine/generator kicks in to extend the driving range to about 480 kilometres or 300 miles.

SOURCE: Vancouver Sun