Green Auto Test Winners

28 Dec

Oilobit.com News/Source: Daimler/Stuttgart – The “ÖkoTrend” institute has declared the S 250 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY and the ML 250 BlueTEC 4MATIC to be the most environmentally friendly cars in their class. This is what lay behind the professional journal AUTO TEST’s decision to present its “Winners in Green” awards to both Mercedes-Benz models.  Read more

People as well as Cars are getting Smart

30 Sep
More than four years after the market launch of the current generation the smart fortwo remains on the road to success. Until today over half a million models of the innovative two-seater have been sold. And sales continue to rise: since the beginning of the year 69,073 smart fortwo have been delivered to customers around the world, 6.6 percent more than in the same period last year.
“Our smart has long since evolved into an icon, which is indispensable in the cities of the world,” says Dr. Annette Winkler, Head of smart.
With the third generation of the smart fortwo electric drive smart is once again setting standards. It will be available for ordering from spring 2012. Those who would like to be among the first owners will have the opportunity to make a reservation online as of the fourth quarter 2011. For the further development of the car the company was able to integrate extensive experience of about 15,000 test runs and customer feedback from various electric mobility projects. For example, this is reflected in clearly improved range and engine performance. Read more

car2go First All-Electric Carsharing Fleet

19 Jul

OilObit.com News/Source: Daimler AG: SAN DIEGO – car2go N. A. LLC, a subsidiary of Daimler North America Corporation, announced that San Diego will be the first North American city to have a 100-percent electric vehicle (EV) carsharing program. San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders, Nicholas Cole, President and CEO of car2go N. A. LLC, and Jonathan Read, CEO of ECOtality, made the official announcement at a news conference at the El Cortez this morning.

“We’re proud that car2go has chosen to launch the first North American all-electric carsharing service in San Diego,” said San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders. “car2go’s launch here further supports our efforts to make San Diego the nation’s electric vehicle capital.”

The all-electric car2go program in San Diego is going to start operations before the end of 2011 with 300 smart fortwo electric drive vehicles. Read more

Most Sustainable Award Mercedes-Benz Atego BlueTec Hybrid

30 Nov

Mercedes-Benz Atego BlueTec HybridOilObit.com News/Source: Daimler PR, Düsseldorf/Stuttgart – November 29, 2010: Daimler CEO Dr. Dieter Zetsche was presented with the German Sustainability Award 2010 by European Commissioner Günther H. Oettinger. The award’s conceptual sponsor is the German Sustainability Award Foundation in Düsseldorf.

The award is presented to companies that combine business success with social responsibility and nature conservation, and that act sustainably to promote further growth. The focus is on consistent sustainability management and sustainability-related issues in brand management.

The jury’s explanatory statement included the following remarks: “Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz Atego BlueTec Hybrid addresses various challenges to sustainability. The adjustment of hybrid components to the vehicle operating strategy reduces fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by between ten and 15 percent – and the savings can even be higher, depending on topography and operating conditions. When the vehicle is braking or coasting, the electric motor serves as a generator that feeds energy into the lithium-ion batteries, which are subsequently available for handling special load situations. The Mercedes-Benz Atego BlueTec Hybrid is therefore an environmentally friendly vehicle with which Daimler is setting benchmarks worldwide.”

At the award ceremony in Düsseldorf, Daimler CEO Dr. Dieter Zetsche said: “Daimler has the clear aim of maintaining its pioneering role even in the new automotive environment. That’s why we already are the manufacturer with the biggest range of alternative drive systems on the road – from the small electric smart to hybrid trucks for distribution services. The Atego BlueTec Hybrid’s performance speaks for itself. The truck is exceptionally quiet, produces very little emissions, and is just as reliable, safe, and versatile as a conventionally powered Mercedes-Benz Atego.”

The Mercedes-Benz Atego’s innovative hybrid drive marks the first time that Daimler is offering this very low emission technology in Europe ex works, thus making it immediately available to customers as a highly sustainable form of freight transport. The vehicle is based on the Euro 5-compliant Atego 1222 L, which already meets the environmentally friendly EEV standard for especially low particulate emissions and can therefore be driven on German highways toll-free. Its compact and lightweight four-cylinder diesel engine with 4.8 liters of displacement generates 160 kW (218 hp). The engine is complemented by a water-cooled electric motor with a maximum output of 44 kW. The motor is supplied with electricity by powerful, high-energy lithium-ion batteries.

The electric motor is mounted behind the combustion engine and clutch, but in front of the transmission. With this configuration, both drive units can power the truck individually or in combination. Thanks to this parallel hybrid drive architecture, it is possible to start solely on electric power, recover braking energy, obtain a boost from the electric motor, and optimize the diesel engine’s characteristic curve. The drive power of the diesel engine is engaged via the clutch between the diesel engine and the electric motor. Until this point, the combustion engine serves solely to power the ancillary components. This setup not only substantially reduces fuel consumption and emissions by up to 15 percent, it also produces less noise. The engine’s automatic start-stop function reduces fuel consumption, emissions, and noise to zero when the vehicle is waiting at traffic lights.

The first batch of 50 Atego BlueTec Hybrids will be delivered to German customers from the distribution sector in early 2011 in order to demonstrate this important future-oriented technology’s suitability for everyday use. The German Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development is helping to fund the vehicles as part of its Electric Mobility Support Program.

The Mercedes-Benz Atego BlueTec Hybrid is part of Daimler’s Shaping Future Transportation initiative. As such, it helps the Group achieve its medium- and long-term environmental goals. At the same time, this practical contribution to sustainable freight transport also benefits customers and the European freight-forwarding sector.

Electric Car Buyers in Germany Less Focused on Brand

10 Nov

According to a survey published by the Center for Automotive Management at Duisburg-Essen University, German car buyers expect to pay less for electric cars than the costs for automakers and they are less focused on brand names. Christoph Rauwald with Dow Jones Newswires wrote a brief story on the findings. Here’s an excerpt and link to the full-story:

FRANKFURT (Dow Jones) – German car buyers are less focused on brand names when it comes to purchasing an electric vehicle, but the price they are willing to pay is far below the costs for automakers, according to a survey published Tuesday by the Center for Automotive Management at Duisburg-Essen University.

According to the study, German car buyers are willing to pay up to EUR21,500 for an electric vehicle from an established brand such as VW or BMW. They would spend the same amount on a car of an unknown brand if the range and battery charging time were 20% better.

“They would even spend more money–up to an extra EUR2,500–if the technical (features) of no-name cars are considerably above the standards of brand models,” the survey said, adding that the average price German car buyers are willing to pay for an electric vehicle is EUR15,000. FULL-STORY HERE.

Source: Christoph Rauwald, Dow Jones Newswires; +49 69 29 725 512; christoph.rauwald@dowjones.com

Hybird Car That Pays the Owner Back

05 Sep

The British Columbia Automobile Association (BCAA) studied the fuel costs of 16 hybrids over five years and they compared the costs against their purchase price and financing fees. In a study released in late July, only one of the 16 hybrids cost less to buy and run than its gasoline counterpart. Can you guess which one? It probably not the one you would expect.

Here’s an excerpt of the BCAA research study and a link to the full article for those interested:

Twelve years after Honda introduced the first gas-electric hybrid vehicle into the mass North American market, car buyers have yet to see the kinds of price reductions that were predicted to occur as hybrids gained popularity and market share. Even with technological advancements, and increased sales and model selection, consumers continue to pay a premium to purchase a hybrid. And, with the introduction of the HST and the corresponding elimination of the provincial sales tax rebate on hybrid vehicles, most hybrid models continue to cost more to own and operate than their conventional gas-powered counterparts.

According to British Columbia Automobile Association’s (BCAA) annual Hybrid Cost and Savings analysis conducted in July, several models come close to their conventional cousins when costs are compared over five years, but only one – the $105,000 Mercedes S400 Hybrid sedan—is less expensive to own and operate compared to its conventional equivalent. (Source: BCAA – Read the full BCAA article here)

SUMMARY OF THE FINDINGS:

  • The $105,000 Mercedes S400 Hybrid sedan is the only model less expensive to own and operate compared to its corresponding conventional model. The S400 is approximately $5,000 less to own and operate than the closest conventional model, the Mercedes S450.
  • The hybrids that come closest in cost to their conventional counterparts in purchase and operating costs are all the Toyota models (Prius, Camry and Highlander Hybrid), all the Honda models (Insight and Civic Hybrid) and the Lexus HS250h.
  • Over a five year period, the hybrids that are the least costly to own and operate are the Honda Insight ($38,326), Toyota Prius ($40,324), and Honda Civic Hybrid ($42,664).
  • Hybrids with the greatest greenhouse gas (GHG) emission advantage over their gas-powered equivalents are:
      Toyota Prius (55% fewer GHG emissions)
      Ford Fusion Hybrid (38% fewer GHG emissions)
      Honda Civic Hybrid (37% fewer GHG emissions)
  • The hybrids with the lowest overall GHG emissions (kg of carbon per year) are:
      Toyota Prius (1748 kg/yr)
      Honda Civic Hybrid (2070 kg/yr)
      Honda Insight (2162 kg/yr)
      Ford Fusion Hybrid (2352 kg/yr)

MERCEDES-BENZ AMG HYBRID?
No, not kidding. Visit AMG Market | Mercedes-Benz Enthusiasts for more info on AMG trends.

Waste Plastic to Oil Conversion – $10 a Barrel

23 Sep

image Is reducing the price per barrel of oil a step in the right direction? If so, Envion Inc. claims they are leading the charge towards a green future with the introduction of a plastic-to-oil conversion technology. According to the manufacturer, the Envion Oil Generator is a first-of-its-kind technology that converts plastic waste into synthetic light medium oil for less than $10 per barrel.

GreenCar Magazine has a story (press release) here: Waste Plastic to Oil Conversion Process Produces Oil for Less than $10 barrel.

The Company’s principal activities focus on production, as well as ongoing R&D dedicated to advancing the efficiency and range of applications of the Envion technology. More information can be found at www.envion.com.

Mercedes-Benz Promotes Emission-Free Mobility

22 Jul

As the consumer’s awareness of environmental responsibility grows, so does the PR pumped out by the marketing arm of Mercedes-Benz. And, marketers at Mercedes-Benz want to make sure you know about their growing fleet of efficient and environmentally compatible production vehicles, which now includes 58 fuel-efficient BlueEFFICIENCY models. Here’s one of several environment related press releases hitting the presses now:

AMG Market News/Source: Mercedes-Benz/Stuttgart/July 21, 2009:

BlueEFFICIENCY, Mercedes-Benz line up of 58 fuel-efficient vehicles

As the inventor of the automobile, Mercedes-Benz also accepts responsibility for its future. The Stuttgart premium car maker is underscoring this conviction with its “Road to emission-free Mobility”, which is intentionally structured to pursue a number of avenues. The three core aspects of development work are the optimization of vehicles with state-of-the-art internal combustion engines, further efficiency improvements with tailor-made hybridization and local emission-free driving with fuel cell and battery-powered vehicles. This strategy has been implemented consistently since its introduction at IAA 2007 – under the heading “Road to the Future”. Based on the concrete results of their research and experience gathered from highly successful major projects testing alternative vehicle and drive concepts, Mercedes engineers have established the pre-requisites for local emission-free driving tomorrow and the day after. Furthermore, with a large and continuously growing fleet of efficient and environmentally compatible series production vehicles – including 58 extremely fuel-efficient and clean BlueEFFICIENCY models – the three-pointed star offers a broad-ranging selection of premium vehicles that combine economy and environmental responsibility with safety, comfort and refined driving pleasure. (Continue Reading >>)

V-Vehicle Fuel Efficient Game Changer?

19 Jun

I’ve barely heard of the new car company, but it appears we all may soon based on the players getting involved. Camille Ricketts published a good piece on the topic:

If you haven’t heard of the V-Vehicle Co. before, you’re in good company. The stealthy new car maker just unveiled plans to produce a fuel-efficient vehicle that could change the game for greener cars — before most of them even hit the market. The company already has a factory in the works in Louisiana, thanks to John Doerr of Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers (a firm known for partner Al Gore and its green leanings) and modern-day oil baron T. Boone Pickens — an odd pairing to say the least. [READ Camille’s FULL STORY here.]

First Lithium-Ion Battery in Mass-Produced Passenger Car

21 Jan

Available in the Mercedes-Benz S 400 BlueHYBRID (Summer 2009)

Oil Obit News/Daimler PR/Stuttgart/January 15, 2009: The ADAC (German Automobile Association) has awarded its “Gelber Engel 2009” (Yellow Angel) to Daimler AG and its systems partner Continental in the Innovation & Environment category. The Stuttgart carmaker was selected for the award by Europe’s largest automobile club in recognition of its lithium-ion battery, the first such battery ever to be successfully integrated into a production passenger car. The Mercedes-Benz S 400 BlueHYBRID featuring this pioneering technology will have its market launch in summer 2009.

2009 Lithium ion battery Mercedes-Benz S400 BlueHYBRID The Stuttgart-based company is the world’s first carmaker to successfully adapt lithium-ion technology – currently used predominantly in consumer electronics – to the heavy demands of production passenger cars. Daimler AG holds a total of 25 patents that collectively facilitated the breakthrough in this important technology. A crucial element in the company’s success was its groundbreaking integration of a lithium-ion battery into the vehicle’s air-conditioning circuit. As a result of this, the battery unit is able to operate at optimum system temperatures between 15-35°C at all times, thus achieving a long service life for use in passenger cars (10 calendar years; 600,000 charging cycles) coupled with maximum efficiency.

Dr. Thomas Weber, the member of the Board of Management of Daimler AG responsible for Group Research and Development Mercedes-Benz Cars, accepted the “Yellow Angel” award together with Heinz-Gerhard Wente, member of the Board of Management of Continental AG responsible for Human Resources and the ContiTech Division. Daimler’s lithium-ion technology was chosen as the year’s top innovation out of 51 applications from 42 companies by a jury comprised of experts from the ADAC, the German Association of the Automotive Industry (VDA), the Association of Motor Vehicle Importers (VDIK) and the German Association for Motor Trade and Repair (ZDK). The number of entries was the highest since the ADAC “Yellow Angel” awards were introduced.

World’s Lowest CO2 Emissions For Class of Vehicle

The innovative battery will be launched in the new Mercedes-Benz S 400 BlueHYBRID as early as summer 2009. The combination of the V6 petrol engine with the compact hybrid module will make the S 400 BlueHYBRID the world’s most economic petrol-engined luxury saloon. NEDC (combined) fuel consumption amounts to just 7.9 litres per 100 kilometers, giving world-best figures for CO2 emissions of just 186 grams per kilometer for this category of vehicle and output. In conjunction with an intelligent energy management system, the new model offers a comprehensive range of hybrid characteristics, including a user-friendly stop/start function for the petrol engine, boost effect and regenerative braking.

Compact, Efficient

The advantage of the lithium-ion battery over conventional nickel-metal hydride batteries lies principally in its compact dimensions combined with much greater efficiency. Compared with NiMH technology, lithium-ion batteries better energy density by 30 percent and power-to-weight ratio by 50 percent. Moreover, they boast a high recharge efficiency and long service life. Lithium-ion batteries also have the lowest environmental impact of all battery technologies and guarantee a sustainable and cost-effective feedstock. Their high safety levels are on a par with those of current car batteries.

As Mercedes-Benz’s system partner, the international automotive supplier Continental was responsible for software development and overall system application. A complex battery management system ensures the battery remains within an optimum operating range at all times. The electronics also monitor general functions such as temperature and energy output as compared with battery age. Safety circuits prevent the battery from overheating, for example, and a ‘cell supervising circuit’ monitors individual cells so as to guarantee optimum interaction. Production of the battery will be overseen by Continental at a new production facility in Nuremberg.

Award Winner

In its Innovation & Environment category, the ADAC recognizes outstanding initiatives, projects or innovations in the fields of road and vehicle safety and environmental protection in road transport and automotive development. Application is open to institutions, organizations, institutes and companies. A basic requirement is that all innovations have already been successfully put into practice.

In 2006 Mercedes-Benz received the prestigious award in the Innovation & Environment category for the world’s cleanest diesel technology BlueTEC, achieving the same feat again in 2007 for its Active Brake Assist for trucks.

“Yellow Angels 2009” were awarded in five categories: Car, Brand, Quality, Innovation & Environment and Personality. They are considered one of the most prestigious European car awards and looked upon by consumers as valuable yardsticks, since they take into account criteria such as price-performance ratio, practicality, economic efficiency, safety and environmental compatibility.

Mercedes-Benz finished runner-up in the Brand category for 2009, as it did with the CLK in the Quality category. In the Car category for 2009 the SLK achieved third place, following a first place with the C-Class in 2008.

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