bitguru blog

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Posts Tagged ‘minivan’

Ford hybrid micro-van

Posted by bitguru on January 10, 2011

Ford C-MAX side viewFord has announced a hybrid micro-van to be available in North America in 2012. The C-MAX will have three rows of seats and sliding side doors. A non-hybrid C-MAX has been available in Europe since 2003 and is somewhat similar to the Mazda5.

There will be two hybrid models, plus ones with conventional drivetrains. The C-MAX Hybrid sounds like a traditional hybrid, while the C-MAX Energi will be a Volt-like plug-in hybrid which aims to deplete its large battery before burning much gas. I’m looking forward to seeing more details.

update: Automobile Magazine’s first look has some images. So does GM-Volt.com.

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hybrid Toyota minivan more than rumor?

Posted by bitguru on November 17, 2010

Prius MPV behind standard PriusAutomobile magazine reports that Toyota will be unveiling a Prius minivan early next year. Others expect an announcement as soon as the Los Angeles auto show, which begins this weekend.

If the blue silhouette image from last month is any indication it won’t be much bigger than a standard Prius, though Car News Break claims it should seat seven.

(Earlier in the month Toyota officially mentioned the newest member of the Toyota Prius family without identifying it as a van.)

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hybrid minivan update

Posted by bitguru on November 9, 2009

Chrysler: The “EV” plug-in hybrid minivan is toast. It was one of three vehicles in Chrysler’s ENVI program which has been canceled. The hyperlinks in my 2008 ENVI post are now dead.

Honda: It has been reported that Honda plans to add a hybrid minivan in 2011.

Toyota: Rumors of a “Prius MPV” (small hybrid van) have been swirling for a couple years now. They persist despite no substantiation.

oOo

Chrysler update: The Detroit News says that Chrysler “plans to offer a two-mode hybrid version of the Dodge Ram pickup next year. It will be followed by a plug-in hybrid Ram and a plug-in hybrid minivan in 2011.” The article also predicts that Chrysler will sell a pure electric version of the Fiat Doblò in late 2011 or 2012.

The Michigan Messenger also mentions a hybrid Chrysler minivan, but other sources do not. They do point out that Chrysler received $70 million in DoE grants to support its ENVI effort.

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Ford electric van by 2010

Posted by bitguru on January 23, 2009

I have written about hybrid minivans b e f o r e but not for a few months because I hadn’t heard anything new. Well this week Ford announced that it will introduce a battery-powered van in 2010. It’s nice to know Ford is in the game, but there are some caveats:

  • It’s a full-size van (perhaps based on the Transit) not a minivan.
  • It’s a commercial vehicle intended for fleets, not private owners.
  • It’s a pure electric, not a hybrid or plug-in hybrid.

The announcement also mentions an “electric small car” in 2011 and “next-generation hybrid vehicles, including a plug-in version” in 2012.

While I’m here: The Chevy Orlando minivan is coming to North America in 2011 and could possibly get the Volt’s plug-in hybrid drivetrain.

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Chrysler announces plug-in hybrid minivan

Posted by bitguru on September 24, 2008

Chrysler EV hybrid minivan

A surprise press release came out of Chrysler yesterday, announcing plug-in hybrid vehicles “targeted to be produced in 2010 for consumers in North American markets.”

Hybrid minivans from Chrysler is a possibility I had mentioned before, but I didn’t expect to hear of a production target so soon.

“With the Chrysler EV, we are able to blend seven-passenger capability and the luxury of the Chrysler Town & Country minivan with electric-drive technology, demonstrating family practicality with zero compromise,” said Rhodes. “ENVI’s electric-drive development vehicles showcase our accelerated application of electric-drive systems into a wide range of vehicles in Chrysler’s future product portfolio.”

The Chrysler EV combines the electric-drive components of an Electric Vehicle with an integrated small-displacement engine and generator to produce additional electricity to power the electric-drive system when needed. This provides all of the positive attributes of an Electric Vehicle and extends the driving range to be equivalent to today’s gasoline-powered vehicles – without compromises.

The Chrysler EV uses a 190 kW (255 horsepower) motor, producing 350 N·m (258 lb.-ft.) of torque, providing 0 to 60 mph acceleration in approximately nine seconds. The Chrysler EV Range-extended Electric Vehicle can drive 40 miles on all-electric power, and boasts a range of 400 miles on approximately eight gallons of gasoline. This makes the Chrysler EV the perfect fuel-efficient family vehicle.

Even without the plug-in aspect, 360 miles on 8 gallons would be 45 mpg. That’s darn good for a seven-passenger vehicle, if they can pull it off.

In addition to the minivan there are also a plug-in sports car (Dodge) and a plug-in hybrid Jeep. Confusingly, they seem to have given all three the “EV” model name. Check out the ENVI team web pages for (scant) details.

[update: These should qualify for the maximum $7500 tax credit. Some sources say that Chrysler intends to bring only one of the three models to production by 2010, the other two within a decade.]

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hybrid Toyota minivan by 2010?

Posted by bitguru on July 2, 2008

I haven’t seen much speculation on hybrid minivans lately, but today BusinessWeek reports: “By 2010, Toyota is also believed to be planning two more dedicated hybrid models, including a new hybrid minivan.

I would have preferred something more substantial than “believed to be planning” but I’ll take what I can get.

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