Flea’s got an itch to drive green, and thanks to the Tesla Roadster’s Customer Drive program, he got his chance to scratch. That’s right Flea, he of the pantheon of rock musicians whose star has risen to such heights that he no longer needs middle or last names (think Sting, Madonna and Bob, to name a few), got the opportunity to test drive the new prototype of the Tesla Roadster.
You may have heard his music with the Red Hot Chili Peppers, now read what Michael “Flea” Balzary had to say about his experience driving the new car from Tesla:
“I get into it and pull away from the curb…dead silence. Wow!!!! It drove like nothing I have ever been in before, made my Porsche feel like a golf cart! It took off like a rocket ship, handled so sensitively, it was just amazing and fun and thrilling. I am so happy I went with my gut and bought that car. Yeah it is a long wait, but man, the thing is awesome. […] To enjoy driving as much as is possible in that Tesla, and to pollute nothing, no emissions, into the air, is a great great feeling.”
Did you watch Transformers and feel left out of the action? Now you can do your own transforming with the Scorpion FX Folding Bike. Heck, you can even go ahead and refer to yourself as “Scorpion” if you’re really getting into character.
Let’s set the scene: You’re commuting to work in your Smart micro car. You see nothing but gridlock in front for miles on end. You see a sign that says “Park and Ride”. You park. You say, “Scorpion: Transform!” And 60 seconds later, without the use of tools or CG, you unfold your Scorpion FX Folding Bike, throw on your spandex, and wham! You’re not just parking, you’re riding.
Especially designed to fold up into the boot (that’s Euro for trunk) of a Smart micro car, the Scorpion is great not just for parking and riding, but also for parking your Scorpion under your desk for the day. The Scorpion is geared for long distance cyclists, employing the most sophisticated of components, including air-chamber rear shocks with adjustable hydraulic damping, a super-plush BodyLink seat, and a drivetrain almost completely covered, so you don’t even have to wear the spandex to assure your pants are clean when you get to work. (Though what self-respecting person calling himself “Scorpion” doesn’t wear spandex?)
Wish you could get around town without taking a gas guzzling car or the bus? Well, Roth Motors has a really cool solution. With the look of a scooter, Roth has designed the Motorboard for urban travel. The 2000XR base model weighs only 16 pounds and has a 6-mile range with top speeds of 15 mph, thus making the Roth Motorboard a powerful personal transportation device. (Extended range battery upgrades are an option, which add only ounces to the weight of the board and provide up to a 20-mile range.)
The design of the Motorboard is unique and clever; the scooter uses the world’s most advanced nanotechnology battery cells from A123 systems (essentially the Gucci of batteries). They’re not only incredibly powerful, they’re also the safest lithium batteries around. Charge time is a little under two hours. The best part of it is, if you’re Motorboarding about and you run out of juice, the Motorboard can be kick-scooted until you get to where you can plug in your battery for re-charging.
Ford is up to something and I like it. Maybe you’re starting to tire of the new concept cars; it seems like they are all starting to look the same. When I saw the Ford Airstream, I thought, “yawn, there’s a concept SUV/van” — but then I saw the inside Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos
Have glider –- will travel. It’s refreshing to see that, with the multitude of transportation options available, people are still able to invent new and innovative ways to get from point A to point B. This innovation is made manifest not only in coming up with space-saving vehicles, but more importantly, vehicles that are more eco-responsible and environmentally safe.
Enter the EasyGlider, the brainchild of Funsport-systems, Inc. The EasyGlider combines the facility of an electric motor with the most biomechanically ingenious chassis ever designed – the human body.
The EasyGlider itself is basically a wheel attached to a long, slightly curved steering bar with handlebars attached. That is the basic concept. Now, add to that an environmentally friendly electric motor that will propel its user at speeds of up to 20 kph and you have a unique system of propulsion. The EasyGlider is meant to be used in concert with your inline skates, skateboard or what they call the “char,” a chariot-like trailer that’s included with the EasyGlider.
If George W. Bush is right, then gas is akin to crack.And I think using less crack is something we can all get behind.
Gas is worse than crack, in that most everything we take for granted in the western world is built on it. So cold turkey is really not an option, and battery technology isn’t where it needs to be to fulfill our energy storage needs.
Enter the hybrids, which will go down in history as the bridge to whatever will replace gas on the roads.
When it comes to luxury hybrids, the Lexus RX 400h is the start and end of the list. With all the accoutrements a well-lined wallet can afford –- and at around $42,000, some $6,000 cheaper than it was when originally introduced -– the definition of luxury is changing. And, we can hope, getting more efficient.
You may have seen Will Farrell getting another car recently – one with plenty of advertising ala his Ricky Bobby days, but this one runs on hydrogen instead of gas. Jay Leno got one, too. They’re among the chosen few to be on BMW’s exclusive list of Hydrogen 7 owners.
The car rolled out in mid-September as “a limited series, sold to select customers,” Leno and Farrell included. Only about 100 celebs worldwide are on the list, so don’t expect to see it at your local BMW dealer anytime soon. Is it cool? Sort of. The Hydrogen 7 boasts all the amenities expected in a luxury car – including a 260 horsepower engine that will get you from 0 to 60 in under 10 seconds. The car can run on either gasoline or hydrogen – the driver decides – giving it a range of over 400 miles, and produces only water when running in hydrogen mode.
Members of Ford Motor Company’s Sustainable Mobility team recently joined Southern California Edison in the hopes of perfecting the plug-in hybrid. Sounds like a good team when you consider that it was Ford who brought us the world’s first hybrid SUV and that Edison currently holds the nation’s record forthe largest and most advanced electric vehicle fleet.
The problem with existing plug-in vehicle technologies, according to an article at Ford.com, is that they’re not competitive or commercially viable – mainly because the current batteries needed to run them aren’t up to consumer demands in terms of price, durability or reliability. But Ford and Edison are striving to change that, to develop a plug-in that will take over the masses, that will consume the consumer.
The advantage to fueling at the plug instead of the pump is obviously that it’s less expensive, it reduces petroleum-based greenhouse gases and, if charged at night, would help balance the nation’s energy grid by utilizing electricity during off-peak hours. According to their website, Edison is already offering a substantial savings to customers who charge their electric vehicles between 9:01 pm and 11:59 am.
The car of the future finally rolled out at this year’s TED conference, and wow, it looks like the future has arrived. For those of us who are looking to decrease our dependence on foreign oil and lower our carbon footprints, the Aptera may likely become our new standard. It was launched from the business incubator Idealab and has received quite a bit of attention due to its fuel efficiency, affordability, and design.
The Aptera concept car (actually it’s not a concept anymore, it’s real) gets 200+ miles per gallon using a hybrid diesel/electric engine. It also has the option of the latest appointments, such as side airbags, “solar assisted” climate control system, reverse camera, GPS tracking system, and other modern gadgets. And Aptera has made a commitment to keep the price low enough that these cars will be affordable – about $25K-$30K. You can even reserve one now for $500, with the first models due to roll out in about 12 months.
Okay, we’ve all felt the L.A. rage that happens when you round a corner or enter the freeway only to be met with gridlocked traffic. We’ve all wished we could see the other end of the city through the smog on a seemingly clear day. And over the last year, we’ve all been downright pissed off every time we pump half a day’s paycheck into our gas tanks in order to “buy in” to these problems.
I’d finally had enough. It was literally driving me mad to commute back and forth to work and my few favorite hobbies – all of which are fairly local – in my gasoline car. Even if it is a lovely, fuel efficient Subaru.
It all came to a head. I had to make a change. I wanted to become more “G”.
Heads and thumbs up for the greenest sailors on the blue highway, Solar Sailor Holdings. An Australian company focused on hybrid marine power and solar wing technology, Solar Sailor came about when founder Robert Dane was watching the 1996 Canberra boat race. That year, the winning boat used a solar panel inclined toward the sun. The only problem with the concept was that as the wind grew stronger, the panel became a hazard and had to be pulled down. This intrigued Dane enough to start wondering how to combine sun and wind to power a modern, seaworthy boat. Dane, a doctor, ex-NSW green ambassador, avid sailor and rower says, “I started reading about evolution and learned that insects had initially used wings as solar collectors and only later used them to fly. This made me think that boats, too, could evolve wings to collect solar power – not to allow them to fly, but to allow them to sail.”
Dane realized he could use a wing sail that doubled as a solar collector, and could adapt to sudden changes in weather by folding it onto the ship’s roof. Unlike the inspirational 1996 race boat, Dane’s sail could collect solar energy without destabilizing the boat. He registered the idea at the patent office and took his first solar sailing boat back to the Canberra race in 1997. In 1999, he founded Solar Sailor Holdings Ltd., with Bob Hawke (ex Prime Minister of Australia) coming on board as Chairman. Continue Reading / Additional Photos / Videos
I definitely like where Chevy’s going with their new ad campaign, Gas-Friendly To Gas-Free, but I’ve been duped by a good ad campaigns in the past (think New Coke). So let’s take a deeper look at what Chevy is really selling us this time around, beyond the shiny green layout in the middle of Vanity Fair and other magazines.
Chevy unfolds their new green thinking in a five-part plan, but really, there’s only one part of the plan that’s selling cars now: their Fuel Efficiency category. Chevy is hyping their bio-friendliness saying eight of their 2007 models get 30 miles per gallon or better on the highway. None of which, of course, are their super popular trucks and SUVs. But they get to that, as the ad claims to offer the best V8 fuel economy of any full-size pick-up truck (that’s right, they use V8 and fuel economy in the same sentence). However, the fine print says it’s only for the two-wheel drive variety, which isn’t nearly as popular as the four-wheel drive variety, and it still only gets 22 miles per gallon on the highway. And what about the ever-popular Tahoe, the symbol of American over-compensation? Well, they spin that by saying it gets better standard highway fuel economy than 12 smaller SUVs with an estimated 21 miles per gallon highway. I’m sure there’s a lot more than 12 smaller SUVs on the market for one thing. Plus, isn’t 40 the new 20?