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Earlier this year at the Cleantech Forum in San Francisco, when speculating as to the next game-changing EV technology, Tesla CEO Elon Musk said, "If I were to make a prediction, I'd think there's a good chance that it is not batteries, but super-capacitors." If that was a giveaway to what Tesla has coming down the road, then it looks like Mazda may have beat them to the punch. Or, at least taken a step in that direction.
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Hyundai Veloster Interior

has chosen to partner up with the folks over at NAVTEQ to formulate their Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS) with a 'green' option.

NAVTEQ, a provider of all things map and GPS, is adding a 'green' route to the standard 'shortest' and 'fastest' ways around town. Results proved to be pretty convincing, yielding a claimed 6% reduction in fuel consumption in the cities they tested. 'Green' routing combined with 'green' driving and the hybrids and small-displacement engines Hyundai has on offer means drivers can max out their fuel efficiency, making both their wallets and enviros happy in the process.

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Hyundai Introduces 'Green Routing' Navigation Leveraging NAVTEQ's Advanced Content

Latest Hyundai navigation platform uses NAVTEQ's Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) attributes for 'green' option

GENEVA, March 2, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- NAVTEQ, the leading global provider of maps, traffic and location data enabling navigation, location-based services and mobile advertising around the world, has been chosen by Hyundai to provide advanced content for its new navigation platform which features a green routing option as well as the traditional 'shortest' or 'fastest' routes. Being showcased on the new Hyundai Veloster which is being launched at the Geneva Motor Show this week, the system will also be demonstrated at the NAVTEQ stand (7000, Hall 7).

Hyundai developed the new software using NAVTEQ's digital map data with additional ADAS attributes such as slopes, height and curvature which enable the routing calculations to take into account more precise road geometry and the nature of the terrain. This has been coupled with NAVTEQ Traffic Patterns™ which predicts where and when traffic jams will happen based on when they typically occur - so drivers can be guided via alternative routes where traffic flows more smoothly. Together these attributes enable the navigation system to find routes which minimize fuel consumption.

"It is rare for this type of 'green routing' option to be available in C–segment vehicles but we are looking to exploit any opportunity which encourages responsible driving and lowers CO2 emissions," commented Allan Rushforth, COO & SVP European Operations, Hyundai Motor Europe GmbH. "By leveraging NAVTEQ's expertise and support services we can improve customer benefits and move beyond the map to ADAS data and other advanced content to bring this technology to higher volume models."

Tests comparing 'fastest route' and 'greenest route' calculations in several city and urban scenarios ranging from Paris to Frankfurt, New York and Chicago showed that when using the 'greenest route', there was at least a 6% fuel saving per trip and often more*. In additional NAVTEQ research,** green routing – with the navigation system determining the most fuel-efficient route – proved the eco friendly feature with the highest level of interest, followed by green driving (which advises the driver on the optimum speed and gear for the terrain) and then predictive cruise control. Most of those surveyed would anticipate using green features on a weekly basis.
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PlugShare app

This Facebook for the EV community brings the rapidly-growing network of range-limited drivers even closer together.

Have a home charging station and want to bond with other electric vehicle drivers in need of a quick juice-up? Well this is where PlugShare (awkwardly) steps in. The app asks for a local address or U.S. zip code, and displays a myriad of blue, purple and green sources of electric fuel, both public and private. The fact that the app and its database is purely community driven may create some Craigslist-style casual encounters for recharging. But if you can forget about the creepiness for a quick sec, it's an intuitive and quite useful app for those of crippled by range anxiety.

[Source: iTunes AppStore]
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2011 McLaren MP4-26

The roar of the engines, the screaming of tires, the lack of CO2 emissions... When it comes to Formula 1, two out of three ain't bad. Right? Not according to your average outspoken environmentalist.

The call for F1 to change its gas-guzzling, tire-burnings ways has been going on for years, but
complacency wasn't much of an issue until now, when, like all things, F1 must appeal to a broader audience by introducing new innovative ways and energy-conscious ideas to improve racing and the auto industry as a whole.

The revolution started back in 2006 when the head of F1's governing body, Max Mosely, proposed the sport to go green, and as you can tell, that didn't quite catch on with fans and driving teams alike. The argument from gearheads was that the cars themselves only account for a measly one percent of total emissions from the sport. The rest is from the manufacturing and transporting of equipment. Granted, the engines only manage a little over four mpg, but in the big scheme of things, it's a drop in the bucket when compared to 18-wheelers to 767s.

Regardless, the brains at F1 racing have an ace up their sleeves to appease the nay-sayers. 2011 marks the return of the Kinetic-Energy Recovery System or KERS for short, which recycles the energy generated by vehicle during braking. 2013 is the target year to mainstream KERS, which would reduce fuel consumption by up to 35%. The process may not be pretty, but focusing on sustainability may bring about new and exciting aspects to the top tier of motorsport, creating a healthy environment while adding to the revenue that allows our favorite teams to do what they do best.

[Source: Wired]
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