Alt Fuels

When Even A Prius Isn’t Eco-Friendly Enough

Posted in Alt Fuels, Biofuel, Bizarre, EcoLust, Environment, Funny, General by Kurt Ernst | April 7th, 2010 | 1 Response |

Jerry’s home built commuter car took eco-friendly to the next level. It discouraged tailgating, too.

Source: That Will Buff Out

Nissan will take advanced orders on LEAF Electric this August.

Posted in Alt Fuels, Electric Cars, Electric Vehicles, Emissions, Nissan by MrAngry | February 12th, 2010 | Leave a Reply |

Nissan LEAF

It seems that Nissan is now ready to jump into the electric car fray with the new “LEAF” Zero Emissions Vehicle. Right off the bat the little Nissan gets some points. It’s good looking for a compact has room for four and has an 80% charge rate of about 30 minutes. The problem however is the range, as it tops out at 100 miles on a single charge. Not good if you’re planning a weekend road trip.

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Lotus Animates Omnivore Guts

Posted in Alt Fuels, Car Tech, Lotus by Dustin Driver | January 22nd, 2010 | Leave a Reply |

It’s two-stroke, is direct-injected, has variable valve timing, doesn’t need a spark plug, and has a variable compression ratio that maxes out at an incredible 40:1. Oh, and it’s also at least 10 percent more efficient than a conventional gasoline engine and can run on virtually any liquid fuel. It’s the Omnivore, a super-efficient prototype engine by Group Lotus, and now you can see how it works in real time thanks to a slick Flash animation.

Group Lotus has been working on the Omnivore for a while, but now they’re really gaining momentum. In recent testing they proved that the two-stroke mill is 10 percent more efficient than similar-sized direct-injeciton gasoline engines, and it burns cleaner to boot. That’s thanks to a free-floating “puck” that slides up and down at the top of the combustion chamber to vary compression ratio based on engine load and type of fuel. It also has a Trapping Valve on the exhaust side that varies duration.

Check out Group Lotus to see for yourself how it works. It’s an incredible design that could eventually lead to 500cc auto engines cranking out 150 horsepower while returning 50-plus miles to the gallon.

Sources: Jalopnik, Autoblog

MiniCat: The Greenest Car

Posted in Alt Fuels, Environment, Fuel-efficient, Hybrid, Hybrid Technologies by Jon | January 16th, 2010 | 11 Responses |

Moteur Development International(MDI), has built a car that doesn’t run on gasoline, electricity, or any biofuel. No, it is powered soley by compressed air, hence the name MiniCat, Compressed Air Technology(CAT). The developer, Guy Negre, may have come up with the most innovative engines in the car industry for several decades. The use of compressed air makes the MiniCat one of the most enviormentally friendly and economical cars ever. And with the addition of dual energy, which is the use of fuel and compressed air, the MiniCat can gain a range of over 1200 miles, emitting a noitceably less amount of pollution into the enviorment. Now if your air compressor is running low, gas stations are planned to supply an air supply and will only take a few minutes to refill. With all the the uncertainty of rising gas prices and the search for a more enviormentally friendly car, MDI has delivered the answer. Instead of having expanding fuel push the engines pistons back and forth, the MiniCat uses cold, compressed air which will also cool the inside of the engine. This breakthrough car will also include some of the most technologically advanced car features, wireless control system, voice recognition, gps guidance, and internet connection just to name a few. The MiniCat will run about $11,000, cheaper than the average car and it will also save us money at the pump.

Nissan Plays Close To The Vest, Quietly Developing New Battery

Posted in Alt Fuels, auto industry, Car Tech, Cars, EcoLust, Electric Cars, Electric Vehicles, Emissions, Newsworthy, Nissan by Suzanne Denbow | November 17th, 2009 | Leave a Reply |

nissan_leaf_battery_a_medium

Less than a year away from the launch of the much gossiped-about Nissan Leaf EV, rumors abound that Nissan is busy at work with a new, lighter, more efficient battery pack. Unlike Chevy, who releases a press release about as often as the average citizen has a bowel movement, Nissan has remained relatively tight-lipped regarding their new electric vehicle and as a result has lent the entire project an air of mystery. Thanks to this intentional game of playing coy, Nissan has managed to generate more interest in the Leaf (at least from the RL camp) than I ever thought possible. The basic information that’s been provided does not hint at a performance-oriented vehicle by any stretch of the term, which would usually earn it an immediate dismissal, but something about Nissan’s subtle approach suggests the Leaf is something to be watched. Further reinforcing this belief is the aforementioned report that surfaced today concerning Nissan’s new battery pack. Since the technology is still struggling through rather primitive stages of development Nissan chief Carlos Ghosn stressed that the lighter, more efficient pack wouldn’t appear in the Leaf until a few years down the road but when it does, it will bring with it a significant cost and weight reduction. Read More…

Propane Powered 1956 Ford F-100 Does Hank Hill Proud

Posted in Alt Fuels, auto industry, Auto Show, car modifications, Cars, Custom, Design, EcoLust, Emissions, Environment, Ford, Pictures, SEMA, Trucks, Videos by Suzanne Denbow | November 16th, 2009 | Leave a Reply |

Hale_56_F-100_Propane_Powered

Thanks to the custom propane-powered engine, Steve Hale’s 1956 F-100 hot rod is one of the most extremely badass yet remarkably fuel-efficient vehicles I’ve seen to date. To highlight the conservation ideology demonstrated by the latter feature, Hale chose to construct the F-100 out of copper – which makes for a very interesting design aesthetic to say the least. Fortunately, the dazzling metallic paint is complimented nicely by the copper and manages to escape the ire usually reserved for over-the-top SEMA jobs. As a matter of fact, so impressive is the entire execution I’m even willing to forgive the inclusion of the obligatory suicide doors. Read More…

AMP=D Electric Makes Going Green A Rewarding Experience

Posted in Alt Fuels, auto industry, Auto Show, car modifications, Cars, Custom, EcoLust, Electric Cars, Electric Vehicles, General, SEMA, Videos by Suzanne Denbow | November 16th, 2009 | Leave a Reply |

cngcoupe

True, although today could have been spent exploring the new and innovative technologies used by various firms to further the development of environmentally-friendly vehicles, I’m easily distracted by throaty exhaust notes. Unfortunately, the burgeoning aftermarket industry is only more than happy to accommodate my insatiable appetite which brings me one of this year’s only SEMA vehicles on the planet that will not cause severe retina damage: AMP=D Electric’s 1933 Ford Hot Rod. Since RideLust was not personally represented at SEMA this year and the individuals that did attend are forcibly protecting their exclusive images, the only coverage RL is able to provide is one lone, superbly edited, incredibly informative video. Poor, poor you. Read More…

eBay Find of the Day, EcoLust Edition: 1964 Ford Ranchero Diesel

Posted in Alt Fuels, auto industry, Cars, Diesel, eBay Motors, EcoLust, Emissions, Ford, Fuel-efficient, General, Trucks by Suzanne Denbow | November 16th, 2009 | Leave a Reply |

1964_Ford_Ranchero_Diesel_3

Before you begin feverishly banging out a nasty comment reminding me that the Ford Ranchero was not offered with a diesel option, bear in mind that this is an engine swap. The body is a reasonably well-kept ’64 Ranchero and the powerplant is an anonymous 6-cylinder diesel unit. The seller appears to know next to nothing about his diamond-in-the-rough, except that he expects it’ll fetch at least $5k and that the 40-gallon-tank is in some way supposed to compensate for the noticeable rust spots and crudely repaired interior (actual quote: “The yellow is sealing foam my bad I should remove that. Oh well you’ll need something to do besides drive a LONG way on one tank of fuel.”). Still, it made my watch list. Read More…

Edison’s EV Tech Center Paving the Way for Plug-in Vehicles

Posted in Alt Fuels, auto industry, EcoLust, Electric Vehicles, Emissions, Environment, Fuel-efficient, General, Newsworthy by Alex Kierstein | November 16th, 2009 | Leave a Reply |
<i>An Edison Ford Escape plug-in hybrid.</i>

An Edison Ford Escape plug-in hybrid.

Monday kicks off EcoLust week here at RideLust where we’ll be exploring the exciting, “lustable” side of environmentally friendly automotive technology and no – this is not a joke or a paid corporate spot. To kick things off, part-time RideLust correspondent and full-time hippie Alex Kiersten provides coverage of his exclusive behind-the-infrastructure tour of Southern California Edison, a utility company at the forefront of EV technology.

Electric vehicles, whether all-battery or plug-in-hybrid, are coming, and automakers and utilities are scrambling to make sure that the infrastructure is there to greet them when they land. Want to get a Chevy Volt? Where are you going to plug it in, and how will it affect your electric bill? One utility company, Southern California Edison, is on the cutting edge of EV infrastructure technology, having been in the game since importing some “Griffon” electric vans in 1987 for testing. President Obama recently toured the facility to see what was up, and so perhaps it’s no surprise that Edison invited Ridelust (always interested in the world of green car tech) to tour their Electric Vehicle Testing Facility in Pomona to show us what their vision for an EV-friendly world would look like.

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Nissan Leaf EV Embarks on North American Exhibition Tour

Posted in Alt Fuels, auto industry, Cars, Electric Cars, Electric Vehicles, Foreign Cars, New Cars, Newsworthy, Nissan, Plug-In Vehicles by Suzanne Denbow | October 23rd, 2009 | 1 Response |

2010_Nissan_Leaf_EV_7

In preparation for what will likely result in the biggest media circus since the debut of the Chevy Volt, Nissan has announced the impending Leaf EV will embark on a 22 city, 11 state tour, replete with special stops in Washington, DC and Vancouver, Canada. The goal of the PR parade is to counteract the storm launched by Chevy Volt engineers and raise widespread awareness of what Nissan is calling “the first EV for the masses.”

While the Nissan Leaf EV’s official on-sale date remains just as vague as the Volt’s, Nissan is apparently hoping to circumvent that by allow customers to pre-order their Leaf as much as a year in advance. Quite lofty for a vehicle that only just recently hit the scene, Nissan expects to receive a whopping 20,000 initial orders for the 5-door plug-in, encroaching considerably on the Volt’s
premature market monopoly.

To see what all the hype is about, check out the Leaf EV’s official tour dates below and prepare for your inevitable crushing disappointment. Read More…