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Green, pale green and dark green ...

Since last year I have had the pleasure to write the texts of the section 'last time' the Car Guide, in addition to the section 'prototypes' in the 2009 edition. Yet I never used at this point expressions, hybrid engine, electric motor, battery has combustion, CO2, Bluetec, BlueMotion, iBlue and so on.

Currently all manufacturers across the planet, from the smallest to the largest, the most debt-to-capital, are seeking the most economic technology, allowing them to stand out and especially to us immune to fluctuations in oil prices and consequently become new citizens protecting the environment.

In light of all these technologies that link the horizon, we discover that the different approaches manufacturers greatly, even if all of these shall develop a turbo-diesel engine prototypes, hybrids, has a battery and combustion to electricity. This fundamental difference, is found on the ground by the use of solutions that are usually clean to their local markets, whether in America, Europe or Asia.

The American approach

Although American automakers are struggling to survive these days, they can not ignore in search of alternative powertrains and for the moment they put the emphasis on hybrid technology currently receiving much notoriety, notably thanks to success of Toyota with its Prius model.

For its part, General Motors benefited him as a good media coverage, among others by the unveiling of its Chevrolet Volt hybrid powertrain. But beyond the technological prowess of this car offers hybrid versions to large SUV Chevrolet Tahoe and GMC Yukon could become a more acceptable solution to save these products. However, GM has just announced that they would be eliminated from the catalog of its products after the year 2011 models. A saving of $ 2 billion. But thanks to its European and South Korean subsidiary, GM will offer shortly, new and more economic models, including the Chevrolet Cruze has made a good impression at the Paris Salon. The way of E85 biofuel will be increasingly used, especially in Saab and other products of the brand.

Ford, when we talk about ecological vehicles, the name that comes immediately to mind is the Escape hybrid. There are also in this constructor, several new engines rebalanced to provide a gain in economy of around 8%, plus a more pronounced use of automatic transmissions have six reports. Over the next year, six models designed by Ford Europe will underpin the development of new more energy efficient products that will be assembled by our neighbors to the North American market.

Although we Chrysler LLC has announced its intention to develop the 100% electric vehicles, it now focuses all its energies in its negotiations with General Motors, for a possible merger between the two major patients. Personally, I prefer to clearly see the strategic alliance with Renault / Nissan to develop group. Besides these already collaborate in development of new so-called complementary products. Nissan is working on a compact model based on the model Versa for Chrysler and it will provide assistance Nissan has to offer common commercial products. By chance and it was like GM, it has also just terminate its plans to offer hybrid versions of its SUV Chrysler Aspen and Dodge Durango.

In South America, as in Brazil and 75% of the fleet is watered E85 biofuel (ethanol / gasoline), it is not uncommon to see vehicles produced in these countries by Volkswagen, Ford, Renault and many others use this kind of fuel. 

The Asian approach

Japanese automakers Toyota head and followed closely by Honda remain the world leader in the supply of hybrid vehicles. Toyota currently has six distinct products, half-half between Toyota and Lexus branches. The iconic Prius will develop a great speed 'V'. A year at the most 3rd version will be available and will be assembled in American soil. An upscale version will be named Lexus and speaks more to develop several variants of this car with a family, a cut and possibly a compact crossover vehicle.

Honda, we announce the next arrival of a new hybrid model, the Insight, the lines are not unlike those of the Prius, his future rival. The limited and targeted marketing of the Honda FCX Clarity fuel cell will become a major turning point in the development of this type of energy. The next year a hybrid version of the Honda Fit small and has a turbo-diesel version of the great Honda Accord car park will enhance the 'green' manufacturer.

Although very discreet, all other Japanese manufacturers are working them also develop their miracle solution. Suzuki has just received the green light from the Japanese government, that his models SX4 fuel cell can operate on roads. In Japan, Mitsubishi seems to put emphasis on the development of electric motors, while Nissan remains open to different avenues that would be favorable to him, in partnership with other manufacturers such as Chrysler LLC. Subaru offers models of this year Legacy and Outback PZEV beneficiant the technology has super ultra low emission (SULEV) answering to Californians and SmartWay certified by the American Standards Agency environmental protection. This technology has the property of completely burning gasoline fumes which the following are 90% cleaner than a conventional vehicle has atmospheric engine.

Hyundai / Kia group markets recently his model Avante (Elantra) hybrid in South Korea. At the Paris Salon, they presented us with hybrid versions of the Hyundai Santa Fe and Kia Soul, not to mention the presence of a Kia Sportage fuel cell. Among these manufacturers, it seems to give precedence to hybrid engines.

The European approach

In Europe or the price of gasoline exceeds all logic for many years, the diesel engine is required and now represents over 60% of the vehicle fleet in certain regions. In recent years, it has developed a new generation of diesel engines and turbo-diesels clean, quiet, odorless and especially economical and green.

For us in America, is that Volkswagen is the pioneer and he returns this year with its new Jetta TDI with an average consumption rises 6.7 km li/100. Audi is poised to introduce a TDI version of the Q7 model offering economy equivalent to that of an intermediate sedan. A4/A4 Avant version will follow a TDI and possibly other models in the coming years. Mercedes-Benz already presented its E-Class sedan with this engine and SUV M-Class Bluetec will soon join. BMW also has plans in the sense that life in America should take the next year. Always with BMW, but this time on the side of Mini cars, it is preparing to provide 500 copies of these small cars powered by electricity, in California and in the states of New York and New Jersey. They will be used for one year by individuals and businesses, on an experimental basis, and will be returned to their factories for expertise.

Even the Chinese, Indian and Russian manufacturers work to the development of cleaner engines. However, they should rely on the expertise of Western manufacturers, which also are implanted more in these new markets in full emergence.


The world of racing is going to have too switch to Eco mode and that all disciplines, including and especially F1. Moreover, the FIA ​​is currently refining a program degreasing V10 V12 engines and could be replaced by turbocharged engines with four or six cylinders. Over the past five years, Audi has won the 24 hour race of Le Mans thanks to the excellence of its V10 TDI engines cleaner, even if their power exceeds 600 horses.

This time is right, maybe I'm naive, but it is clear that all mankind has an urgent need to treat the planet and free themselves from the yoke of oil. Yes, our children are now happening in Eco mode, but first and foremost for our individual well being which multiplies by millions of people around the world will have passed through many obstacles and provide a healthier life and grandchildren, without having to destroy everything that surrounds us and spit on everything that exists between two and ten wheels ...

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