We drive Mitsubishi’s plug-in SUV, and wonder if downsized pickups really are a bigger thing than automakers project. And guess who’s now neighbors with the Mustang Ranch? This is The Week In Reverse for Friday, September 12, here at Green Car Reports.
This week at Green Car Reports, we brought you our first drive report of the Mitsubishi Outlander Plug-In Hybrid. It’s a long-overdue version of the compact crossover; and after several delays, it still won’t arrive to the U.S. until fall 2015, but we drove it in the UK.
We also took a look at GM’s new, more efficient mid-size pickups, the Chevrolet Colorado and GMC Canyon, and asked if early orders are indicating whether smaller pickups might prove more popular than carmarkers expect.
And we pondered one Volkswagen executive’s remarks about how fuel cell vehicles might struggle outside Japan, while we reported that Toyota might not be placing all of its emphasis on fuel cells; Tesla CEO Elon Musk hinted that there may be more Tesla-Toyota plans in the pipeline, and that Tesla will have self-driving cars in about three years.
Some of the big aftermarket tuners are already getting their hands on the Tesla Model S, and the Saleen FourSixteen is one of them. The enhanced tire-smoking, motor whining performance is hardly what many see as part of electric-car bliss; but we think it might stoke enthusiasm from a new crowd. Meanwhile, it seems that China is developing some enthusiasm for electric cars; after years of encouragement through government policies and subsidies, EV production within the country is finally starting to grow significantly.
And some of the biggest news with the oddest hook this past week comes from Nevada, which is getting the Tesla Motors ‘gigafactory’ for battery assembly, outside Reno. In a “human interest” twist where zero-emission green transport intersects another specialized local industry, it turns out a brothel owner helped seal the deal for the factory’s location. And for Tesla, we’ll just have to consider it the cost of doing business.