June 13, 2012
A123 Systems. A developer and manufacturer of advanced Nanophosphate lithium iron phosphate batteries and systems, A123 Systems has introduced Nanophosphate EXT, a new lithium ion battery technology capable of operating at extreme temperatures without requiring thermal management. Nanophosphate EXT is designed to significantly reduce or eliminate the need for heating or cooling systems, which is expected to create sizable new opportunities within the transportation and telecommunications markets, among others. Unlike lead acid or other advanced battery technologies, Nanophosphate EXT is designed to maintain long cycle life at extreme high temperatures and deliver high power at extreme low temperatures. The long-awaited Magic Bullet that will transform the electric vehicle industry? We shall see.
Saab. Reports suggest that bankruptcy administrators for Sweden's ailing Saab Automobile AB are expected to name a new buyer - a Chinese-Sweden investment group with Japanese backing - for the car maker today. National Electric Vehicle Sweden AB is planning to make electric Saabs. Really?
Porsche continues to be on a roll, increasing its deliveries by 14.1 percent in May 2012, compared with the same month the year before, with the sports car manufacturer delivering 13,331 new cars to customers worldwide. For the year Porsche has sold 56,472 vehicles, which is an increase of 13.0 percent. Notably, Porsche delivered 2,693 rear-engine sports cars worldwide (+28.2 %) and 2,882 Panamera models, an increase of 25.2 per cent compared with May 2011. The biggest 911 market continues to be in the United States. 878 vehicles of the 911 model line were delivered to customers here in May.
Reproduction Mustang bodies are available in every classic model year from 1965 to 1970 along with the ever-popular 1965 and 1967 convertibles. All cars feature modern welding and assembly techniques and are made from high-strength, modern automotive-grade steel. Officially licensed fenders, bumpers, door skins and other body parts for project cars that have restorable bodies are also available to replace parts susceptible to rust or damaged in accidents. Many Ford restoration parts are actually made from the original Ford tools that have been preserved for the restoration market and look, fit and perform exactly as the originals. About 95 percent of all the parts needed to build a “new” classic ’64 to ’66 Mustang are available today. “We offer everything from a door handle to a complete Mustang body,” says Dennis Mondrach, Ford Restoration Parts licensing manager. “We just recently launched a 1965 Mustang convertible body – the complete assembly, all the sheet metal from the hood to the trunk. It is designed to enable fans of the original Mustang to build the classic of their dreams using a body that is stronger than the original.” With the 50th anniversary of the Ford Mustang less than two years away, this summer is the time to begin restoring your classic pony car so that it can be ready for one of the most important milestones in American automotive history. “Working nights and weekends, and as your budget allows, it takes roughly two years to do a complete wheels-up classic car restoration,” says Brian Martin, director of automotive restoration development at McPherson College in Kansas. McPherson is the only school in North America that offers a four-year bachelor’s degree in automobile restoration. Thousands of high-quality, officially licensed reproduction parts are available for the Ford Mustang at www.fordrestorationparts.com.
(Photos Courtesy of GM)
The 2013 Buick Verano Turbo will go on sale late in the year. Powered by an Ecotec 2.0L turbocharged engine with direct injection and continuously variable valve timing that produces an SAE-certified 250 horsepower (187 kW) at 5300 rpm and 260 lb.-ft. (353 Nm) of torque at 2000 rpm, the hotter version of the Verano will accelerate from 0-60 mph in an estimated 6.2 seconds. And more than 90 percent of the Verano Turbo’s peak torque – more than 234 lb.-ft. – is available between 1700 to 5500 rpm. Its closest competitor, the 2013 Acura ILX 2.4L, offers a peak of 170 lb.-ft. of torque, according to Buick. The Verano Turbo will be available with a choice of a six-speed automatic transmission or a six-speed manual gearbox.
(Photos Courtesy of BMW)
The new-look MINI Rocketman Concept is the latest edition of a small car study first presented at the International Geneva Motor Show 2011. The new design of the MINI Rocketman Concept "combines innovative ideas for personal mobility in major cities with classical, unmistakably British design features inside and out," according to the release. The Rocketman will be on display in the BMW Group Pavilion this summer during the Olympic Games, which is located close to the Olympic and Paralympic Village.
Editor's Note: in case you missed it, Dr. Bud weighs-in this week. - WG