Monday, October 6, 2014

Seven Greener Cars at the Paris Auto Show

At the 2014 Paris Motor Show there were a number of notable green vehicles including production cars and concepts. The Paris Show started on October 2 and is one of the most prestigious vehicle expositions in the world. It is important to note that vehicles from luxury sport models to utility vehicles are getting more efficient in an effort to reduce their overall emissions profiles.

Here are two production vehicles and five concepts from the Paris Auto Show:

1. Ford C-Max (production)

The 2016 Ford C-Max Hybrid and Energi plug-in hybrid has revised styling and feature updates and now features electronic driver aids, including Active Park Assist, Perpendicular Parking, and Cross-Traffic Alert. While they are available in Europe the updated versions are not expected in the US until spring of 2015.

2. Volkswagen Passat GTE Plug-In Hybrid (production)

The Volkswagen Passat GTE plug-in hybrid uses the same power train as the smaller Golf GTE. The 215 horsepower power train includes a 1.4-liter four-cylinder gasoline engine and an electric motor with a the 9.9-kWh lithium ion battery pack. According to optimistic estimates it has a purely electric powered range of 31 miles. It is expected that it will go on sale in the US next year with the plug-in hybrid version coming in the form of the Audi A3 e-tron Sportback hatchback in the 2016 model year.

3. Volkswagen XL Sport concept

This performance car has added a Ducati V-twin motorcycle engine to its XL1 diesel plug-in hybrid. Although the vehicle is less efficient than the original carbon-fiber reinforced plastic-bodied two seater, it is capable of reaching 168 mph. Which is pretty impressive for a vehicle with less than 200 hp. This vehicle is not slated for production.

4. Jaguar XE diesel concept

The aluminum body 2017 Jaguar XE small luxury sedan may be the most efficient Jaguar to date due to its light weight and turbodiesel engine. It may find its way into the US in a couple of years.

5. Infiniti Q80 Inspiration concept

The four-door luxury hatchback Q80 concept features a hybrid powertrain. It has a 3.0-liter twin-turbocharged V-6 paired with an electric motor. This hybrid concept produces a muscular 550 hp and 553 lb-ft of torque. The new hybrid system may find its way into the Q50 or Q70 sedans.

6. Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-In Hybrid (PHEV Concept-S)

Mitsubishi's new revised Outlander Plug-In Hybrid features revised styling. It is already being sold in Europe and Asia and it is expected to be available in the US in the fall of 2015.

7. Renault Eolab concept

The lightweight Eoloab concept is a three door plug-in hybrid with a 9 pound magnesium roof. Its has a 67-hp electric motor that produces 150 lb-ft of torque. It has a 6.7-kWh lithium-ion battery pack--paired with a 1.0-liter three-cylinder engine with output of 75 hp and 75 lb-ft. In the US the Eolab could preview future plug-in cars from global-alliance partner Nissan, which is looking to offer plug-in hybrids beginning in 2015.

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