Renault’s Spark of Imagination
The Renault-Nissan alliance is getting exceedingly proactive in the electric vehicle (EV) space, having announced that they’ll begin selling “affordable production electric vehicles” in 2011. While there is still lively debate ranging as to whether the EV is a solution for transportation in places like the U.S., where people may have longer commutes from the suburbs than may be the case in places like Europe, where people may be driving completely inter-urban modes, Carlos Ghosn and his colleagues are cranking it to 11 for their EV vision.
At the recent Frankfurt Motor Show there were four Renault EV concepts revealed, with a ramp up in size and capability, from the small to the large.
There is the Zoe Z.E.(zero emissions) concept, that is considered a daily driver.
The Fluence Z.E., an electric version of the Fluence that will be introduced as a non-EV, as well. It offers a range of 160 km.
There is the Kangoo Z.E., which is based on the conventional Kangoo. It has a 70-kW motor that cranks out 226 Nm of torque.
Finally there is the charming Twizy Z.E. city car for two (the passenger sits behind the driver) that is just 2.3-m long and 1.13-m wide (which explains the seating setup) with a 15-kW electric motor powering the wheels.
And, no, the wheels aren’t octagonal (that would suck up way too much electricity). Who says being environmentally correct can’t be fun?
The engineers at Munro & Associates have taken a perfectly sound BMW i3 and taken it apart. Completely apart. And they are impressed with what they’ve discovered about how the EV is engineered.
Ford has made an accomplishment that will never be bested, never even be tied.
While you are probably familiar with origami, the classic art of paper folding that results in things like birds that flap their wings when you pull the tail, or plot devices in one of the Blade Runner films.