If we believe everything we read, it may seem that the internal combustion engine is on the out. Everyone wants to talk about alternative , hybrid and electric vehicles, what we will be driving in the future and what will propel it. If you believe the hype: we’ll no doubt be driving pod shaped vehicles, powered by bacteria regenerating lithium batteries. If you believe everything you read, we’ve written off the internal combustion engine! I’ve got news for you: the traditional petroleum powered internal combustion engine isn’t going anyplace soon. In fact, this 125-year-old invention is just getting started. Google “better fuel economy than a prius” and the list of articles stretches endlessly. The fact is the internal combustion engine has barely hit momentum yet. BMW’s 2011 520D, Ford’s 2010 Fiesta, even Hyundai ravages the poor old Prius on fuel efficiency. Clearly a large part of this anomaly is the 125 year history – evolution – the internal combustion engine has under it’s belt. Hybrid and Electric Vehicles are new technology, and no doubt will grow into worthy advisories. Hybrid and EV are at the moment novelties, take Porsche, the 2011 Panamera Hybrid has a fuel economy of 45 mile per gallon, the 2011 911 has a fuel economy of 50mpg, go figure? Read the full article »»»»
Nissan has called on its motorsport division NISMO to help give its all-electric LEAF some serious street cred. The result is the new LEAF NISMO RC, and despite the fact it’s unlikely to be banging panels on the racetrack in the near future, Nissan says it’s been designed and constructed as a real race machine. By cutting the weight and giving it a new aerodynamic body the NISMO RC makes 0-100 km/h (62 mph) in 6.85 seconds on its way to a top speed of 150 km/h (93 mph).
Although it shares moniker and sports the same the same lithium-ion battery powertrain as the LEAF, that’s pretty much where the similarities between the two vehicles end, with the NISMO RC doing away with the rear doors, rear seat, trunk, audio system, navigation, carpeting and other creature comforts found in its mass-produced cousin. Read the full article »»»»