As green and ethical consumerism grows to become a global phenomenon, InvestorIdeas.com discusses options and choices available and underway posing the question - Are there enough choices and incentives to create the shift? Electric Car Manufacturer ZAP (OTCBB: ZAAP) and R.L. Evans, Director Clean Energy Research Centre, University of British Columbia, help to provide insight into the highways of the future.
At the recent Hydrogen & Fuel Cells 2007Conference held in Vancouver B.C., Bill Reinert, National Manager TMS Advanced Technologies Group, Toyota Motor Company discussed that “by 2040, based on the current growth, there will be 2- 3 billion cars on the road, up from current numbers of 1 billion, creating environmental problems 4 to 5 times of what they are today." The projected numbers of population and vehicle growth provide compelling motivation for change.
Consumers looking for green and environmentally friendly automotive choices available in the market today can visit Yahoo! Autos Green Rating and search the Top 100 Cars by Green Rating, developed in consultation with Environmental Defense (environmentaldefense.org). Users can browse through available options in Hybrid - Electric cars, Ethanol cars, Diesel - Biodiesel cars, Natural Gas cars and fuel efficient cars. The rating measures the vehicle's environmental friendliness from 1 to 100 with the higher a vehicle's Green Rating, the "greener" it is and the lower its harm to both human health and the planet.
For consumers looking at electric cars, industry players ZAP (OTCBB: ZAAP) and GM with the GM Volt offer both performance and efficiency in the near future.
ZAP, who has been in the electric car market since 1994, has a full line of competitively priced electric vehicles from A to Z ranging from electric scooters, electric ATV's and electric cars and trucks. ZAP is also working with Lotus Engineering to create the ZAP-X utilizing the award-winning APX lightweight aluminium architecture design to achieve unprecedented levels of performance and utility for electric cars. An advanced battery system will enable the car to travel a range up to 350 miles between charges, with a rapid charge technology that can recharge the batteries in as little as 10 minutes.
"Thanks to the support our shareholders, with the only series city class electric car in production, ZAP is now uniquely positioned to maximize the current demand due to rising gas prices and concerns of global warming. Priced at around $10,000, electric cars can now not only save the environment, they can save you money," commented ZAP's Chairman of the Board, Gary Starr.
GM’s Chevrolet Volt, unveiled at the 2007Detroit Auto Show is anticipated to hit the roads by 2010. The Volt is projected to have a charge time of 6.5 hours featuring 40 miles on just the battery alone with a 640 mile range on a full tank of gas. GM is also offering a green mix of automotive choices with E85 vehicles, Hybrids and is working on Fuel Cell Cars for the future.
In a white paper presented at a joint ASME and ATI meeting in Milan last year entitled ”HYDROGEN ECONOMY OR ELECTRICITY ECONOMY?” R.L. Evans, Director Clean Energy Research Centre, the University of British Columbia offers his vision of the roads of the future in his Transportation Case Study.
Excerpt from Paper:
“The successful development and introduction into the marketplace of the ‘Plug-in hybrid vehicle’ would mark the beginnings of a significant new transportation Paradigm, eliminating the need for road vehicles to use petroleum fuels, at least for the Majority of miles traveled. If electricity were to be generated primarily from sustainable Primary energy sources, then road transportation would also become sustainable and would result in an ‘Electricity Economy’, rather than a ‘Hydrogen Economy’.
Much of the development work on batteries has been driven by the successful introduction in the last few years of hybrid electric vehicles (or HEV’s). Hybrid vehicles have been very successfully introduced into the market, initially in compact cars, but the technology is now spreading to larger cars and sport utility vehicles where the benefit of much greater fuel economy will be particularly welcome.”
Consumers can catch up on what is available in new Hybrids for 2007 by visiting the Government website FuelEconomy.Gov. The 2008 Ford Escape Hybrid currently being promoted, offers additional features such as a 12 percent reduction in noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) levels inside the vehicle and has seating surfaces made from 100 percent post-industrial materials.
Luxury auto manufactures see the need to offer performance as well as address environmental concerns and there are several available and in the pipeline for brand conscious consumers. Mercedes-Benz’s Bluetec system in a new line of diesel-engines reduces emissions but offer drivers 700+ miles on a single tank of gas. BMW has turned green with the new Hydrogen 7, but it is not currently available to the general public.
In addition to the work with ZAP and the electric cars, Lotus has entered the biofuels market with the Lotus Exige 265E running on E85 with a 264 horsepower with 0 to 60 mph in 3.9 seconds – no compromise for going green. Biofuels, while offering a green alternative however are projected to never be able to meet the capacity of the growing global auto market.
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ZAP (zapworld.com) has been a leader in advanced transportation technologies since 1994, delivering over 90,000 vehicles to consumers in more than 75 countries. At the forefront of fuel-efficient transportation with new technologies including energy efficient gas systems, hydrogen, electric, fuel cell, ethanol, hybrid and other innovative power systems, ZAP is developing a high-performance crossover SUV electric car concept called ZAP-X engineered by Lotus Engineering. The Company recently launched a new portable energy technology that manages power for mobile electronics, like cell phones and laptops.
ZAP is a featured Company on RenewableEnergyStocks.com, TechSectorStocks.com and EnvironmentStocks.com and compensates the portals as disclosed in disclaimer below.
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