Batteries away!

Continuing the report from the weekend’s work putting Velma the PHEV’s batteries out of sight I’m pleased to report that the physical battery relocation is finished. Velma is drivable again! More after the jump, along with the (almost) finished Prius trunk! Normal PHEV and EV articles will resume tomorrow. Picking up from yesterday’s post –…

Renault’s new EV likes to dance

Renault France unveiled it’s new electric vehicle yestrday. Okay, so it’s only a prototype at the moment – but it’s an electric version (or Zero Emissions, as Renault like to say) of the new Renault Kangoo Be Bop

The Be Bop itself doesn’t immediately grab my attention. I’m not a fan of the MPV platform. Yes, they may be versatile, but they tend to look like the love-child of oversize family cars and a van. Which, quite frankly, is what they are.

But in this case, it’s rather cute. See, when you look beneath the surface the new Kango Be Bop (which has just gone on sale in Europe) has some pretty neat features such as a sliding tailgate, allowing the whole rear of the car to be open. (This isn’t the first time that this kind of trick has been pulled – Honda did something similar a few years back with one of their trucks – but it’s certainly the fist time in an MPV.)

Still, it’s not that which catches my eye. It’s the specs of the Electric version – and some of the interesting features it sports.

It's not only laptops with cool charge-meters
It's not only laptops with cool charge-meters

Read more after the jump.

GM and the PUMA. Wait till you have a better prototype, eh?

For serious EV enthusiasts who want full size vehicles which go fast and far there’s nothing more irritating than a joke EV making the headlines. It’s important for car makers to get new and exciting electric vehicles out in the public eye, but only if the vehicles in question give EVs a good name. But to put it bluntly the GM/Segway PUMA prototype looked no more than a complete joke when it hit the news earlier this week.

Segway/GMs prototype PUMA doesnt win any beauty prizes.
Segway/GM's prototype PUMA doesn't win any beauty prizes.

Unveiled as an early prototype at the New York Autoshow, the little two-wheeled, self balancing personal transport vehicle can carry two people at up to 30 mph around town for up to 35 miles.

More after the jump