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Found 8 results

  1. I recently had a PHEV - the BMW 225 XE as a temporary replacement car. While the 225XE is not exactly a 100% electric car, but if you keep the battery charged up, you can technically run on full electric power for about 25km. Was eager to try out how it is like to be living with an EV in Singapore and here are my observations: Driving on pure electric power was weird (like driving around with your engine shut down) in the beginning. But i kinda enjoyed it after awhile, i guess. Biggest challenge with the short range is...eventually, it will fall back into petrol powered mode and it takes forever to charge the battery up again until you plug-in again. A domestic power point + the supplied cable is not enough, you'll need a wall box to be installed in order to safely charge the car. It's a big pain to find places to charge when you're out of the house and run out battery juice. While there are quite a number of charging points, but they're often operated by different service providers (each requires u to become a member + place deposit/min fee etc. etc. to use). When you eventually find it, you'll end up staring at the grass for the next 2-3 hours waiting for the car to charge up.🤣 The instant torque of the electric motor + engine is super addictive a total blast when overtaking with 385 Nm of near instant torque !!! No one will be willing to wait 2-3 hours for the battery to be fully charged. Not practical for anyone who does not have a charger at home. Oh ya... this short, fat and very family looking car does 0-100 in 6.7 sec 😈 ultimate sleeper car! Long term cost of maintenance is a big question mark. In conclusion, Singapore's infra is still far from being EV friendly. The most practical way for someone who does not have a home charger to drive an EV...go the PHEV way if you want to experience electric car and yet can fall back to the petrol engine for a decent drive if u run out of juice.
  2. Sdf4786k

    Honda e EV

    nice looking concept from honda. Much better than the Insight https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MfD67KCFxqI https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pi2wrqAlK5Q looks a tad like the first gen civic
  3. therock

    Vantage Motors Sells BYD

    https://www.straitstimes.com/lifestyle/motoring/ford-agent-lands-byd-dealership I'm excited by the prospects of the introduction of BYD cars, but I'm apprehensive about Vantage Motors as their agent... Their track record with Ford has not been the best.. As for the idea of buying an electric car, there's a whole debate on how green they really are, especially when you take into account the carbon footprint of making the battery and it's disposal. As for buying Chinese, that's ok, there are different levels of QC - their local Chinese market ones can be quite nasty, but their better ones are very impressive. I think they will want to put their best food forward.. and already BYD cars are being used as taxis.. Vantage will be pleased, their business has been rather slow recently.. BTW mods: BYD is not a selectable option in the list of car brands for discussion... FYI...
  4. As you all probably know by now, Top Gear isn't the most reliable source of information on 'Green' cars because of their inherent hatred towards them making them more prone to giving biased reviews. However, whoever said Top Gear was about pure facts? Its hilarious! Obviously, Clarkson and May were using EVs for a rather incredibly stupid but entertaining challenge; they were going for a cross country 'trek' which i assume is what these EVs were 'made for' if you catch my drift. Clarkson was in the Nissan Leaf which as you know if you have been reading this blog, it won the 2011 World Car of the Year. I actually wonder how it did that since 2011 isn't even over yet. Anyway, James May was driving a Peugeot iOn which is basically just a Mitsubishi i-MiEV till his ran out of juice as well. How coincidental. I wouldn't be surprised if it was staged but who really cares? Its all for entertainment sake anyway. I know there are lots of people who despise Top Gear's style of info-tainment but I'd say just let the boys have some fun eh?
  5. CheeJun

    Mercedes goes to China

    Mercedes has teamed up with China car manufacturer BYD to create a whole new automotive firm for the Chinese market. Though the name hasn't been cast in stone yet, it is by no surprise as to why Mercedes has chosen BYD to be their partner in China when you see the cars that BYD has produced so far. They look almost identical to the cars the Merc produced in the late 1990s! Not only do their cars look identical, their logo is 'inspired' by BMW as well. However, the main partnership between Merc and BYD will be focused predominantly on building cost effective electric cars, and as we all know by now, China is the best place to start looking for 'cost effectiveness'. Apparently, despite the fact that Mercedes spends millions of dollars a day on Research and Development, they haven't found ways to produce an electric car in the cheapest possible way and thus explains their decision to direct their problem to China, where they have found their solution. BYD's Lithium-Ion and Mercedes' Li-Tech battery technology will be combined in the process of manufacturing the new car. Both companies will be sharing their resources and the result will be a car which is cheap to own and will probably do 300,000km since keeping a car for any longer than that is just not the way to go in China. And I think thats true. Mercedes has definitely gone to the right people when they decided they need to learn how to do things cheaply, and in about 3 years time, the world will be able to see the first Mercedes-BYD electric car. Let's see how good, or bad that's going to be.
  6. CheeJun

    Going Green gets annoying

    Now we all know that going green is essential or so it seems, to our survival and our future generations as well. However, when this noble act of saving the earth becomes obsessive and as you will see, rather far fetched, it seems like car manufacturers are just jumping on the bandwagon to show that they're being 'green' and 'environmentally friendly' when in actuality, it may just be marketing ploys and the influence of pop culture. In one of the most surprising revelations in the recent weeks, Indonesia has revealed their latest creation. A hybrid car. Which is both amusing and rather desperate when you find out how long it takes to start up. The Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) revealed their car and unfortunately, it took 15 minutes to actually move. No doubt it still is in it infant stages, but when you reveal a car to the world, at least make sure it works! The ride was bumpy, slow, and there isn't even power steering. So is this a step forward or backwards? It becoming rather confusing. The main idea of a hybrid car would send the message that a country is moving forwards in the spectrum of technology, but this? I highly doubt so. The LIPI produced car is just one extreme. On the other hands, there are geeks all over the world who congregate together and think of ideas and designs which frankly only people who live in a world where everyone travels around in bubbles can ever think of. And if you thought a Chinese-American union was a good idea, this is what results. General Motors and the Shanghai Automotive Industry have come up with this: the EN V concept which is their idea of a 'new global urban mobility vehicle'. I can't really be bothered to talk about the designs but they can be described with one word; hideous. And this is a quote which explains what these 'urban mobility vehicles' are all about: "The EN-V concepts are GM's solution for the congested urban centers in which we're all likely to live by 2030. Their all-electric, two-wheel drivetrains take care of the emissions problem. They're also fitted with the latest GPS, vehicle-to-vehicle connectivity and an array of sensors and cameras that allow fully autonomous driving. The effect of all this tech is less congestion on city roads and the virtual elimination of accidents. Zero emissions, zero traffic jams and zero accidents
  7. - A Leaf Now after writing about hybrids and then reading about the Nissan Leaf I am of the opinion that totally electric cars (not hybrids) of the near future (anything less than 5years from today) are actually going to be troublesome for most of us. Firstly, if you read their specs they have the range of about 2 feet on a single charge. Really. A supposed 160 kilometers range (like the Nissan Leaf) is actually useful if you work within a radius of 20km and you don't do any outside appointments. This is because in our climate, humidity, heat and traffic will mean that batteries will not last as long as cooler climates and a theoretical 150km mileage could be much less. If you travel a lot, which this writer over here does on a daily basis, a totally electric car isn't practical at all. And not all drivers are sensible drivers. Last week I witnessed a Toyota Prius which was piloted by someone who absolutely was trying to overtake every other car on the highway. I don't think any hybrid or totally electric car will save the world if Lead Foot Larry was doing the driving. Secondly, a fully electric car will be a pain if you have to open the socket cover on an electric car, take a power cord and plug in to recharge every time it goes flat or every time you reach home. Most of us already find it tedious going to the gas station to queue up, pop open the filler lid, reach for the pump and them pump petrol or diesel into the car at least once or twice a week. Now, with an electric car, we are supposed to do something dreary and totally dull almost everyday. Unless electric cars have a battery life of your average cellular phone, which is at least three to five days between charges, most long haul drivers will keep away from electric cars. Maybe it could work in a country like Singapore, where most commutes are short distances, most of the time. Thirdly. Have you heard your blender or your vacuum cleaner lately? They sound utterly and terribly boring, even if they may be noisy. Their electric motors spin at thousands of revs per minutes but they just sound monotonous. How interesting would a sports car be if it were powered by a blender? Look at the Tesla Roadster, yes its green, yes its fast (to a point) but it is so quiet but if the electric motor were to make a sound, it would sound like those appliances or a large version of the R/C car you bought for your kid last Christmas. They would just go 'wheeeeeeeeeee' and nothing else. One of the points of actual sports car driving or ownership is the aural thrills it would give you. If you've heard a Zonda, or a SL55 or a 911 GT3 RS or even a F430, all of which I have had the opportunity of hearing their exhaust notes on song, you'd never want a silent car, ever. The sound made by all of these cars, you will never find in a Tesla or even a Prius. Or maybe they should make all electric cars sound like those pod racers in Star Wars. Especially Sebulba's pod racer. Or then again, make it sound like a TIE fighter. Then I'd buy an electric car. Go watch Star Wars and choose your favourite sounds for your electric car's noise making speakers, if they ever installed speakers to liven up electrics/hybrids. It actually would make people buy them if it sounded like something from Star Wars. - Let's put speakers on quiet electric cars like the Tesla and make them sound like.... -.............. this. So does that mean that I will never go green? I hereby promise to keep the potted plants on my apartment balcony alive by watering them so that they absorb carbon from the atmosphere, buy a British Racing Green coloured car, put paper/aluminium/glass waste in their respective bins and then save up and buy a C63 AMG as it has catalytic converters in its exhaust system that will actually clean the air that it consumes to make that beautiful Messerschmidt-like AMG V8 sound. - an 'environmentally friendly' car I'd buy.
  8. CheeJun

    Hybrids need some grunt

    As we are all familiar by now, hybrid cars run on both petrol engine and an electric motor. And this has caused a rather unusual problem. They're too quiet and that poses a source of danger to pedestrians like children or old people who can't really hear that well. Amazingly, hybrid cars such as the Prius only emit 30 decibels which is as loud as a Careless Whisperer.. The Japanese government is stepping in to tackle this new problem on their hands, one which they created for themselves in the interest of public safety and being environmentally friendly. What they plan to do is to install a simple device that makes a noise while the car is operating on its electric motor. The biggest problem that the Japanese government faces is the kind of sound that the car should make. Some suggested the sound of a horse's hooves, the voice of a person shouting out warnings, or the amplified sound of tyres. One thing's for sure is that the Japanese never fail to entertain just by looking at the suggestions to solve the problem! However, the Transport Authorities aren't going to make it compulsory to install such sound-generating devices into hybrids or electric cars even though they are becoming increasingly popular in Japan. Just imagine the roads of Japan with sounds of ducks, horses, monkeys? A jet fighter, a bomb, a phone ringing, an ice-cream van jingle. The list can go on... Which is why the authorities want to standardize the type of sound emitted before they implement such measures. Since Japan is always at the forefront of technological advances, I believe that if Singapore follows their example of promoting environmentally friendly vehicles like hybrids and EVs (electric vehicles), we will face the same problem they are facing now one day. So get our heads cracking and decide whether your car should go 'Moo' or 'Ruff ruff!'... But come on, what's wrong with conventional engine noises? Stuff your eco-friendly car with some Bose speakers and blast the sound of a burbling Supercharged V8 from a Mercedes SLR or something and the problem is solved. Well that's one possibility. What do you think?