Archives for the Category: Go Green

Will People Miss Driving With Autonomous Driving

Posted by jg on January 15th, 2016 in Category Car News, Go Green, News from Canada, Odd News, Site News, Uncategorized (no responses)

Technology keeps advancing quickly especially with self driving cars, but will you miss driving once you don’t have to any more.

Mercedes-Benz , Cadillac, Volvo–not to mention Google GOOGL -1.51%, Tesla and, rumor has it, Apple AAPL +0.00%–are all racing to relieve drivers of that fun. Within five years, most automakers say, they’ll offer highly automated cars that can handle stop-and-go traffic and freeway speeds without any driver input. In ten years drivers will be able to work or even take a nap during their commute. Volvo just unveiled the Time Machine, a futuristic cockpit with a 25-inch flat-screen that rotates out of the dashboard as the steering wheel retreats and the driver reclines. Google is developing self-driving cars that don’t even come with a steering wheel or gas pedal.

This is the future, asserts Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk. “Any cars that are being made that don’t have full autonomy will have negative value,” he predicted in a November conference call with Wall Street analysts. “It will be like owning a horse. You’re really owning it for sentimental reasons.”

Not everyone thinks so. “It’s not just getting from point A to point B,” says Mazda’s soft-spoken CEO, Masamichi Kogai, who heads up perhaps the only major automaker that is not working on autonomous cars. “Our mission is to provide the essence of driving pleasure.

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What Volkswagen Is Doing To Handle The Scandal

Posted by jg on October 15th, 2015 in Category Car News, Go Green, News from Canada, Odd News, Site News, Uncategorized (no responses)

The car industry is looking into different car companies emissions test now after Volkswagen cheated.

As Volkswagen AG strategizes to keep its business afloat and put its current crisis – the rigging of its “clean” diesel cars to cheat on U.S. emissions tests and misleading customers about its TDI vehicles’ green credentials — behind it, it must face the fact that the debacle will likely dog its reputation for years.

Not only will the actual fixes to diesel cars take two years or more to sort out, but New York Times reporter Jack Ewing has struck a six-figure book deal to write the yarn of what happened. Megastar Leonardo DiCaprio has already signed on to be a co-producer of the film version and might even star in the story. With the book taking a year or so to produce, and the movie presumably taking another year after that to make, VW can count on an epic rehash of the debacle after two years of damage control.

Conversations with several current and former Volkswagen executives over the past week since VW of America CEO Michael Horn testified before Congress portray a company that is vast and layered with bureaucracy, on top of a culture of fear and engineering arrogance.

One longtime executive said, “I can totally see how this could happen and very top managers not know. … I’m not saying that they didn’t know, but it is possible.”

How could that be? “You have no idea how much stuff lands on the desk of these senior guys to approve and sign, and they rely on their underlings to organize it,” said another former executive who now works for a different car company. Said another: “It’s possible, too, that the engineers couched the software addition in language that very senior people who signed off were meant to not see what it really was.”

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Starting Off The Fall Season With Big Discounts At Car Dealerships

Posted by jg on September 2nd, 2015 in Category Car News, Charity News, Donations, Go Green, News from Canada, Odd News, Site News, Uncategorized (no responses)

With school starting, now is not a generally busy car-buying month for most people. However, car dealerships have been trying to rectify that, their silence seems to hint that big deals are on the horizon.

This makes for a buying opportunity.

Take Kia. The 2015 Soul qualifies for an extra $1,000 in bonus cash as part of Kia’s end of summer “Best-in-Class” 12-day sale. That brings the combined factory and dealer discounts to about $3,000 on a $22,195 wagon-like runabout.

Ford, of course, will wind down summer with its annual Employee Pricing extravaganza. The $2,551 discount on the Fusion sedan can be combined with 1.49 per cent financing for up to 60 months. Insiders suggest the savvy shopper will be able to squeeze out even more in hard negotiations.

Also consider models like the Hyundai Elantra, which is coming to the end of its current body style (Hyundai has released teaser illustrations of the next-generation Elantra). To keep interest healthy, Hyundai has slapped a $4,000 spiff on a $25,549 Elantra. And you should get at least another $1,000 in a negotiated dealer discount. That comes to at least a 20 per cent total discount on this Elantra.

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Ford Cools Down The Temperature To Test Winter Driving

Posted by jg on August 23rd, 2015 in Category Car Humor, Car News, Charity News, Go Green, News from Canada, News from the USA, Odd News, Site News, Uncategorized (no responses)

Fall is just around the corner and winter testing for cars is already here.

It’s a steamy 35 C in this small city on the Florida panhandle. Meanwhile, I am inside a giant chamber, suited up in full winter gear and watching snowflakes fall from the ceiling onto a line of vehicles below.

It’s -28 C inside the McKinley Climatic Laboratory on the Eglin Air Force Base, and Ford is showing me how it tests its cars and trucks for winter compatibility.

“One of the things we’re looking at is cold starts,” says Rich Shimon, technical expert on gasoline powertrain calibration for Ford. “When drivers get into the vehicle, they expect it to start right away and have a comfortable idle speed. Our job is to make sure our vehicles do that under any conceivable condition and with any conceivable fuel, and now we’re doing the extreme cold-weather testing.”

Accurate testing depends on stable conditions, which is why McKinley was constructed in the first place. Many fighter planes wouldn’t start in the cold during the Second World War, and since it couldn’t count on consistent weather outside, the U.S. government commissioned the facility for testing during equipment development. It was finished in 1947, and following a major renovation that wrapped up in 1997, it was then opened up to outside companies. It runs 24 hours a day and is fully booked for the next three years.

Its five chambers can reproduce any type of weather, except tornadoes and lightning strikes. It’s the largest in the world at 5,110 square metres, can go from a high of 48 C to a low of -65 C overnight, and can replicate hurricanes, fog, freezing rain and sandstorms.

Depending on the chamber used and the type of weather requested, rental costs range from $8,000 to $30,000 (U.S.) per day.

Ford uses the big chamber for three weeks each year, primarily because of its capacity. “We’re able to get 72 vehicles and 54 engineers into the chamber,” Shimon says. Back in Michigan, his team has to share Ford’s four smaller test chambers with other departments, and it would take months to do what he can achieve in Florida in three weeks.

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Car Sales New Technique Is To Focus On Tech

Posted by jg on July 30th, 2015 in Category Car Humor, Car News, Charity News, Donations, Go Green, News from Canada, News from the USA, Odd News, Site News, Uncategorized (no responses)

The new generations of car buyers love their social media, smart phone and tablets and having a car with compatible technologies is right up their ally.

Targeting techies is an important marketing strategy for automakers, according to a study released today by J.D. Power.

The company’s 2015 U.S. Automotive Media and Marketing Report — Summer edition found that 30 percent of new-vehicle drivers cited their vehicle’s latest technology as a reason for purchasing.

 

J.D. Power has released the report twice a year since 1987, but this is the first time respondents were asked about technology features as a reason for purchase.

 

Among luxury-brand new-vehicle drivers, 43 percent said cutting-edge technology features influenced their purchase. Lincoln, Infiniti, Cadillac and Audi drivers had the highest proportions of respondents who cited technology features as a reason for purchasing.

 

Among non luxury-brand new-vehicle drivers, 28 percent were looking for the latest technology. Mazda, Buick and Chrysler drivers were the most interested in technology when deciding on a vehicle.

 

“Targeting these technology seekers with the right messaging is critical to using marketing dollars effectively to reach consumers who will actually buy new vehicles because of technology,” Arianne Walker, J.D. Power’s senior director of automotive media and marketing, said in a statement today.

 

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The Next Generation of Volt is Here

Posted by jg on August 7th, 2014 in Category Car News, Go Green (no responses)

GM’s Volt was a smash success on the auto market, so much so that they decided to make the next generation.  General Motors will show the next-generation Chevrolet Volt plug-in at the Detroit auto show in January, Chevy’s top marketer said today.

Tim Mahoney, Chevy’s global chief marketing officer, disclosed the plans at the 2014 Management Briefing Seminars in Traverse City, Mich. He also revealed a teaser photo that showed the redesigned 2016 Volt’s rear badge and a more sculpted decklid.

The next-gen Volt is expected to arrive in showrooms sometime in late 2015. GM will add a third seat in the rear and downsize to a 1.0-liter, three-cylinder engine, from the current 1.4-liter four-cylinder, sources have told Automotive News.

GM has sold more than 65,000 Volts since it went on sale in December 2010, making it the top selling U.S. plug-in car, GM said in a statement today.

Still, sales volumes have fallen short of the company’s initial expectations. Former CEO Dan Akerson had initially projected production of 60,000 Volts in 2012 alone.

This year through July, GM sold 10,635 Volts, down 9 percent from a year earlier. Sales dipped 2 percent last year, to 23,094.

GM said nearly 70 percent of buyers who trade in another vehicle for a Volt are coming out of non-GM brands, which is a high conquest rate. The majority of those trade-ins are Toyota Prius hybrids, GM said.

The Volt is powered by energy from its 435-pound battery pack for an estimated range of 38 miles. Once the charge is depleted, the gasoline-powered engine kicks on to power the electric drivetrain.  The Volt was one of the top cars in its market last year and will continue to stay on top with this new generation.

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Very Green Method of Transportation

Posted by jg on November 1st, 2012 in Category Go Green, Odd News (no responses)

Love this pic!

green bike

$15k Prize Added to Tire Take Back Event

Posted by jg on April 18th, 2012 in Category Go Green, News from Canada (no responses)

Great news and more excitement for this years Tire Take Back Event!  Ontario Tire Stewardship (OTS), as part of the 2012 Tire Take Back event, is offering a Community Prize to create excitement about this important recycling event, encourage community participation and underscore the connection between high value, green products and responsible tire disposal.

The Community Prize is a gift in kind of up to $15,000 worth of tire-derived products (such as, but not limited to, recycled rubber mulch, playground surfacing, patio tiles, and sidewalk pavers) from OTS registered Recycled Product Manufacturers (RPMs). The OARA member that collects the most used tires from residents in their area during the event period (May 28-June 2) will be able to designate a local, non-profit community project to receive this gift in kind.

This could mean innovative upgrades to our parks and playgrounds, eco-friendly renovations to our community facilities like new athletic flooring, and more durable sidewalks or roofing for our public spaces.

Car Recycling Idea

Posted by jg on January 3rd, 2012 in Category Car Humor, Go Green, Odd News (no responses)

This junk car was turned into a mini playground in Ireland.

car recycling did i do it right

Climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro for Charity

Posted by jg on August 8th, 2011 in Category Charity News, Go Green, News from Canada (no responses)

A group in Alberta is preparing to climb Mount Kilimanjaro for charity!

The first successful climb of Tanzania’s Mount Kilimanjaro in 1889 took six weeks.

Italian Bruno Brunod literally ran to the top in five hours, 38 minutes and 20 seconds in 2001. Native guide Simon Mtuy made it up and back in eight hours and 27 minutes in 2004.

Gretta and Garnet Cummings aren’t out to set any records. They just want to reach the top, a trek of 25 to 30 kilometres one way. If all goes according to plan — Garnet’s artificial left hip and right knee hold out, and altitude sickness doesn’t stop them — the Edmonton couple will be standing on the snow-capped summit of the world’s tallest free-standing volcano and the highest point of Africa 5,895 metres (19,344 feet) above sea level on Aug. 17, seven days after starting the climb, slightly longer than the five or six days it takes the average climber.

Read the full article here.