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Recharge Wrap-up: Big Oil fails at renewable fuel, scientists study air with EVs, plug-in Panamera sales

Big Oil companies help keep renewable fuels out of your tank, a new report shows. No surprise there, right? The Renewable Fuels Association published a report card grading the country's largest retail gasoline chains on fuel offerings like E85 and E15. The report gave failing grades, with less than one percent of stations offering E15 or E85, to "Big Five" companies Exxon, BP, ConocoPhillips, Chevron and Shell, among other oil company and convenience/grocery store brands. The only major oil companies that didn't get an "F" were Valero (D), Cenex (B), and Marathon (A-). The eight companies that scored an A+ had at least 25 percent of their stations offering E85 or E15. Read more at Domestic Fuel.

Leicester scientists are studying local air pollution using EVs. Beginning July 4, University of Leicester researchers began driving electric vehicles kitted out with special sensors to monitor air quality throughout the city (similar to how California does it). Now their emissions-free daily driving duties double as data collection for their studies. "By monitoring air quality as a seamless part of our daily transport system, we are providing a cost-effective way to help inform future policy and operational systems," says the University's Dr. Roland Leigh. Read more at Fleet News.

"There is no doubt electric cars are the future." – Nissan's Andy Palmer

Nissan is exploring the idea of taking its Leaf EV to India, but a lack of charging options is an obstacle. According to Nissan's chief planning officer Andy Palmer, "There is no doubt electric cars are the future. The product is there, what we need is infrastructure. Charging is a big challenge." Though Nissan stopped short of saying it (this time), this could possibly mean working with Mahindra, which said it is open to collaborating with other companies concerning EVs. Learn more in this article from the Hindustan Times and know that India is rolling out a plan to encourage the production and adoption of EVs. The National Electric Mobility Mission Plan will get over $2 billion in funding, and some of that will go toward creating a charging infrastructure (you hear that, Nissan?). This is good news for EV manufacturers, India's economy and people who enjoy breathing clean air. Read more at The Financial Express.

Porsche has reported a significant sales increase, part of which is due to demand for the Panamera S E-Hybrid. Of the 87,800 Porsche cars delivered in the first half of 2014 - a nearly eight percent boost over last year - 13,500 were Panameras. About 10 percent of those sales were the Panamera S E-Hybrid. Green Car Congress has more details. Featured Gallery2014 Porsche Panamera S E-Hybrid: First Drive Source

Read also: recent reviews, test drives, automotive trends and the latest news from the world of cars.

  • Secrets of the second-generation Nissan Leaf [w/video]

    Secrets of the second-generation Nissan Leaf [w/video]

    The Nissan IDS concept from this year's Tokyo Motor Show is a thinly veiled preview of the next Nissan Leaf, at least from a styling perspective. As with most concepts, the IDS has a few features that are way off into the future. Like a cockpit that folds away the steering wheel when you switch to piloted driving mode. Or a message display that broadcasts your next move to other pedestrians and

  • Nissan Bladeglider now on the backburner

    Nissan Bladeglider now on the backburner

    There have been some big shakeups within Nissan's top executive ranks in the past 12 months, including Johan de Nyscchen leaving Infiniti to run Cadillac and Andy Palmer taking over Aston Martin. With them gone, the automaker's future product portfolio looks to be shifting as well. Among them, the chances are dwindling for the BladeGlider to actually arrive in dealers – already a rumored

  • A week in a rented 2016 Nissan Maxima

    A week in a rented 2016 Nissan Maxima

    I recently rented a 2016 Nissan Maxima. Thanks to National Emerald Aisle, my Executive Membership, paired with the good people at Bishop International Airport, I paid for a midsize for a week and was triple-upgraded to the car in the fleet I wanted most. As a member of a Nissan/Infiniti family, the moment I saw the initial pictures of the 2016 Maxima, my jaw hit the floor. I thought to myself,

  • Tesla Model S drivers put way more miles on their cars than Nissan Leaf owners do (we think)

    Tesla Model S drivers put way more miles on their cars than Nissan Leaf owners do (we think)

    Just a few weeks ago, Nissan announced that its customers have driven over a billion electric kilometers in the four years that the world's best-selling EV has been on the road. That heady milestone means, Nissan says, that the Leaf has saved 180 million kilograms of CO2 emissions around the world. The billion kilometers have been split among the 147,000 Leaf vehicles that Nissan has sold.


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