Apr 13, 2009 | 10
Despite an infusion of federal funds, there are reports that General Motors (GM) – the nation's No. 1 and the world's No. 2 automaker is preparing to declare bankruptcy on June 1. GM was leader of the pack for 77 years until 2007 when Toyota surpassed it as the globe's top car seller. Meantime, the company is fielding offers for its king gas-guzzler, the Hummer, which has attracted interested bidders despite its enviro-hostile rep and dismal sales.
Detroit-based GM has received over $13 billion in government support since last year to keep it afloat despite slumping sales, in part due to the firm’s reliance on gas-eating sports utility vehicles and pickup trucks. These vehicles have fallen out of favor in the face of rising oil prices.
The Detroit News reports that GM is mulling declaring bankruptcy and reorganizing in a way that would enable it to retain its most promising Chevrolet, Buick and Cadillac brands. That means the electric-gas hybrid Chevy Volt would continue its rollout, even though GM expects to lose money on the first generation of the high-tech vehicle, according to Automotive News.
Oct 21, 2008 | 4
If your wallet is taking a beating from high gas prices and all this talk of green energy has inspired you to shop around for a hybrid car, new fuel-efficiency ratings may help you.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has ranked 10 hybrid vehicles. Topping the list: the Toyota Prius, which gets 48 miles (77 kilometers) per gallon on city streets and 45 mpg (72 km) on the highway.
The Honda Civic Hybrid is next, racking up 40 mpg (64 km) for city driving and the same as the Prius on the freeway. No. 3 is the Nissan Altima Hybrid, which takes you 35 miles (56 kilometers) per gallon in the city, 33 miles (53 kilometers) per gallon on the expressway.
Sep 7, 2008 | 6
In advance of the Paris International Auto Show in early October, Honda has released photos of its new entry-level hybrid car, which the press has (naturally) labeled the “Prius-fighter.” Reports indicate the Insight, a five-door family hatchback that is scheduled to hit dealership floors worldwide next year, is to be priced around $18,000, some $3,000 less than Toyota’s vaunted Prius gasoline-electric hybrid.
The new Insight will be powered by the latest iteration of Honda’s Integrated Motor Assist (IMA) hybrid technology, which will be significantly cheaper than its current systems, according to press reports. The IMA is a parallel hybrid system with an electric motor mounted between the engine and transmission to act as a starter motor, engine balancer and traction motor assist. The new, more cost-efficient powertrain accounts for the low price tag, making it potentially the most affordable hybrid model on the 2009 market.
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