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The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
 |  Jan 30 2012, 1:30 PM

1,400 metric tons of diesel fuel is difficult to imagine from an average consumer perspective. That’s enough to power a diesel compact car for about 350,000 miles, much more than it would probably ever drive.

That’s also how much diesel Nissan will save every year thanks to a new transport ship which launched on its maiden voyage last Friday. The Nichioh Maru is the company’s newest freight liner and it’s making a splash in the green technology world thanks to it’s innovative design which offers an 18 percent fuel savings over similar ships without the technology.

The ship features 281 solar panels on the deck which power LED lighting throughout the ship. It also has a specially coated hull to reduce drag and is about the length of 1.5 football fields (557 feet).

The Nichioh Maru carries up to 1,380 cars and travels at a top speed of 24.4 mph or 22.1 knots to make two domestic round trips per week totaling just over 2,200 miles. Nissan released a video featuring the ship, you can watch it below.

Continue Reading…

 |  Jan 24 2012, 5:30 PM

If you tell the McGees that their house looks like a scrap heap, they won’t be offended. That’s because it’s made from salvaged car roofs.

The McGees’ family homestead was designed by Leger Wanaselja Architecture and uses over 100 salvaged car roofs. The plan was to build a house that was eco-friendly by using green technologies and reused materials, and these reused materials included roofs from gray-colored cars found in Berkeley, California junk yards. And getting the right roofs wasn’t easy – they had to be in good condition, and this meant no dents or paint chips (the cars were in the junk yard for a reason, so not as simple as it sounds),

Once the right car roofs were found, they were cut into long tile-like shapes. Once cut, they were used to construct the upper outside walls of the house, giving tiles a slate-like appearance. And roofs weren’t the only car part used for this house. It also features cool awnings made from old Dodge Caravan side windows.

This is a unique way to keep car parts out of landfills. Would you ever consider buying a home that’s been partly constructed out of old car parts? Leave us your thoughts in the comments section below.

GALLERY: Home Built With Salvaged Car Parts

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[Source: Gizmag]

 |  Dec 15 2011, 2:45 PM

Never heard of the American car company Coda? We won’t blame you. This electric car upstart is trying to make a name for itself, but has so far run into production delays plus other birthing problems new car companies face.

However, the editor’s at Forbes believe in Coda and that it will soon be among the most successful new companies in America. Forbes has thus included Coda in their annual “100 Most Promising Companies” list.

Coda is also the only car company in this exclusive list, which mostly is comprised of software companies, and has placed a burger joint (Smashburger) at the top.

Forbes says that the reason Coda is on its list is because of  “compelling business models, strong management teams, notable customers, strategic partners and precious investment capital.” Even in tough times, Coda has managed to raise money, hire more people and start production, which is a huge accomplishment in these tough economic times.

Coda’s CEO Phil Murtaugh said he is “honored and excited for this recognition.”

If all goes to plan, Coda will start delivering their electric sedan in a few months time. Price start at $39,900 plus a destination charge of $895. However, due to its green credentials, you’ll get a $7500 credit from the Government. The Coda requires six-hours (from 220V) to charge fully and has a range of 150-miles.

[Source: Autoblog]

 |  Dec 12 2011, 10:30 PM

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According to Reuters, General Motors and BMW are jumping into bed over fuel cells. GM is already established as a leader in the technology, though they are staying tight-lipped about the partnership according to Autoblog.

BMW told the site that they are ”speaking about various future technologies.” Additionally, German business magazine, Wirtschafts Woche says according to an inside source that talks are already very far along.

The partnership isn’t surprising considering car companies will need to achieve 35.5 miles-per-gallon by 2016 in the U.S. and 54.5 mpg for cars and light trucks by 2025.

This isn’t the first move BMW made with other companies to advance their green tech. Earlier this month we reported that the German automaker announced a partnership with Toyota to work on green projects.

[Source: Autoblog]

 |  Sep 01 2011, 2:00 PM

Siemens might be a household name, but it is normally associated with appliances such and blenders and sewing machines.

However, now it hopes to add another daily appliance to its resume, by making an electric car. To do so, it has partnered with Volvo to make a fully-electric car based on their C30 platform.

Volvo, which has been quite keen over the last few years to produce an electric car will certainly gain a lot from Siemens technical know-how on this subject.

“We are very happy to have Siemens as a partner. Their world-leading knowledge and experience will bring the technology in our electric cars up to an entirely new level,” says Stefan Jacoby, President and CEO of Volvo Car Corporation.

Volvo has shown electric versions of the C30 in the past, but now with Siemens help it can get this project a lot closer to production. Volvo will deliver 200 vehicles to Siemens by the end of this year for testing.

Volvo hopes to start a small production run of the electric C30 this year, with a plug-in hybrid version of the V60 to be launched next year.

 |  Aug 08 2011, 3:00 PM

Earlier this year, Land Rover introduced three hybrid-electric concept vehicles at the Geneva Motor Show, and now Land Rover is looking to put them to the test.

The RAC Future Car Challenge is an annual event that showcases technology that we might see in production cars in years to come. Think of it as a motor show that doesn’t stand still.

Land Rover is keen to show that its plug-in diesel-hybrid concepts actually work, and has entered them in this years challenge.

The Range_e is based on a Range Rover Sport TDV6. While the concept retains the production vehicles 245-hp, 3.0-liter, V6 engine, it also gains a 69KW electric motor, which runs on a 14.2KW/h lithium-ion battery pack. This vehicle can be charged using a 240V household plug, and can propel this heavy 4×4 vehicle upto 20-miles on battery power alone.

The challenge will be held on November 5th, in London and will cover a 60-mile route. The target of this challenge is to see who can use the least amount of energy to cover the route in the 2 hour, 45 minute minimum to 3 hour 30 minute maximum time.

 |  Jul 15 2011, 11:15 AM

Auto racing and environmental consciousness normally do not mix, however, the American LeMans Series has been working on changing that, and hopes to improve on its already green track record.

This is the only race series around the world in which four different types of fuels are being used, namely E10, E85, diesel and isobutanol. Also, apart from the result of championship points given to teams and drivers respective of their finish in the race, ALMS also awards a championship within a championship to the greenest team on the grid.

Now the series is looking to go greener still by hoping to soon introduce natural gas powered race cars. In an interview with Fox Car Report, ALMS President and CEO Scott Atherton said he wants to “demonstrate the competitiveness of natural gas, and the ease and convenience of refueling, because right now that’s seen as one of the impediments. If you can take away some of what the consumer would describe as downside issues, and demonstrate its competitiveness and the fact that you don’t have to sacrifice anything, I think it would go a long way toward mainstream acceptance of natural gas as a fuel for any type of vehicle.”

When asked about electric race cars, Atherton said this technology might play in this series in the future, but not at the moment, saying electric drivetrains cannot handle the stress of such a race series, however he is looking at other electric race series to bring in as part of their support festivities. Nissan has already hinted at an all electric series using spec versions of the NISMO Leaf RC race car.

Atherton is also excited about introducing the Delta Wing racer, a concept that was originally intended for the IndyCar Series. This racer would weigh half as much as current race cars and also consume half the energy. He hopes to have the Delta Wing racer ready for the 2012 season opener in Sebring, Florida.
In addition, look for hybrids to join the series in the future, with rumors that Porsche’s 2014 Le Mans entry will use both gasoline and electric technology.
[Source: Fox News]