History

 
Modern electric cars at 20: from EV1 to Bolt EV, where are we now?

Modern electric cars at 20: from EV1 to Bolt EV, where are we now?

Twenty years ago today, the very first GM EV1 electric cars were delivered to 40 lessees in California in a blaze of publicity. Since then, plug-in electric vehicles have seen more than their share of ups and downs. That first EV1 was a high-tech two-seater created specifically to meet California's... read more

December 5, 2016 by -
 
2001 Toyota Prius Sedan

The 12 most influential green cars in history

The automobile has been with us since 1885, but only over the last 50 years have governments started to face up to its ill effects on the environment. The world's major car... read more June 21, 2016 by


 
Utopia sedan concept by designer Brooks Stevens, 1960  [image courtesy Milwaukee Art Museum]

Fuel-cell concepts from 50 years ago: famed designer Brooks Stevens

Most car buyers would be hard-pressed to name a single automobile designer working today. But it wasn't always that way: names like Raymond Loewy and Harley Earl were known... read more April 8, 2016 by


 
E.J. Potter's 'Super Slot Car' was an MG 1100 sedan with 4 jet-engine starter motors, one per wheel

Super Slot Car: Electric Drag Racing Via V-12 Engine And Cables!

The sport of drag racing has been with us almost as long as the automobile has. Over the last decade, advances in high-power lithium-ion batteries have given rise to a new... read more December 23, 2015 by


 
Automobile accident, Washington, D.C., 1923

Overall U.S. Fuel Economy: Higher Now Than In 1923, But Only A Little

The average fuel economy of new cars and trucks sold in the U.S. today is the subject of intense regulation, but what about over a much longer period of time? Has the... read more August 18, 2015 by


 
1914 Detroit Electric car, owned by GE scientist Charles Steinmetz, Schenectady, NY, June 2011

Electric Car Drivers: Be Thankful You Didn't Recharge In 1900!

Charging an electric car today isn't necessarily quite as easy as pulling up to the gas pump in a gasoline or diesel model. Long charging times and sparse public charging... read more June 15, 2015 by


 
1977 Volkswagen Microbus

VW Bus Hybrid That Never Was: The Microbus Prototype Of 1977

There truly is nothing new under the sun, as the saying goes. Now, a Volkswagen bus from almost 40 years ago has surfaced to prove the point. While hybrid cars have only... read more March 27, 2015 by


 
Road trip on historic U.S. Route 66 (Images: Antony Ingram)

Famed U.S. Route 66 To Go Electric In Illinois, With State Support

As the song says, you can "get your kicks" on Route 66--but soon you'll also be able to get a charge. The historic highway and the towns it passes through were largely done... read more December 2, 2014 by


 
Electric Sociability Run participants, 100 years apart. Photo by Lanny Hartmann

Electric-Car Rally Celebrates 'Sociability Run' 100 Years Ago: UPDATE

Modern electric cars like the Tesla Model S and Nissan Leaf are slowly getting better-known to consumers today, but their history stretches back much further. This year marks... read more June 10, 2014 by


 
Volkswagen T2 Elektro, historic VW electric car at Tempelhof Airport, Berlin

Volkswagen Shows Off Its 40-Year History Of Electric Cars

While its new 2015 Volkswagen e-Golf will be the first-ever plug-in electric VW sold in the U.S., the German carmaker has a surprisingly long history of prototype electric... read more March 31, 2014 by


 
Volkswagen Beetle Celebrates Its 65th Year In The U.S.

VW Beetle Celebrates 65 Years In U.S. (With A Few Missing)

Raise a glass to the simple, classic, iconic Volkswagen Beetle, which is celebrating its 65th year in the United States. Well, almost. The first Beetle to reach U.S. shores... read more February 3, 2014 by


 
1898 'P1' electric car designed by Ferdinand Porsche

First-Ever Porsche Turns Out To Be An Electric Car

Here's a great piece of bar trivia: The first-ever Porsche was ... an electric car. While any ardent Porschephile knows that the first Porsche-branded vehicle was the 356... read more January 30, 2014 by


 
AMC Amitron concept car, 1967

Electric-Car Trivia: When Was Regenerative Braking First Used?

Regenerative braking is a standard and expected part of any electrified car now, from Honda's mild hybrids up through battery-electric vehicles like the Tesla Model S. It... read more January 10, 2014 by


 
GM EV1 and Tesla Model S electric cars, at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Worcester, MA, Oct 2013

GM EV1 & Tesla Model S: Looking At 20 Years Of Electric Cars

Last week, we were struck by a single photo that captured electric cars across two decades. The image, showing a GM EV1 and a Tesla Model S on the Worcester Polytechnic... read more October 9, 2013 by


 
2013 Nissan Leaf, Nashville area test drive, April 2013

Why The 2013 Nissan Leaf Is Really A 2001 Toyota Prius

A lot of media discussion these days seems to focus overly on the low sales of plug-in electric cars (this piece from Friday, for instance). That despite the fact that... read more September 23, 2013 by


 
1900 New England Electric vintage car

Electric Cars Are Fast: First-Ever U.S. Speeding Ticket

Speeding is big business. There's no money to be made from it as an individual of course, unless you subscribe to the theory "time is money". But the U.S. Census Bureau... read more April 20, 2013 by 4


 

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