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BMW Electric ActiveE Available in Fall 2011

The BMW ActiveE rolled onto the show floor at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show. This member of the BMW electrified 1-Series will make its first North American appearance at New York Auto Show this spring.

One thousand ActiveEs will be built for field testing in New York, Boston, L.A., San Diego, Sacramento and select areas in Connecticut.

The BMW ActiveE electric (image above) drivetrain includes a bundle of liquid-cooled SB LiMotive batteries which supply the car with 170 hp and 184 pound-feet of torque giving it a 0-60 of nine seconds and range of 100 miles.

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BMW Megacity Electric Car to Be Expensive

Yes, this may come as a major shock to many of you so it’s best if you sit down before reading any further – the upcoming BMW Megacity electric car will be pretty expensive. Oh, you already got that from the title? Sorry about that.

Anyway, how expensive will the Megacity be? Well we don’t know for sure except that it’ll definitely be priced higher than the Nissan Leaf due to its corrosive resistant aluminum chassis and lightweight carbon fiber and plastic frame build. The upside is that all that weight reduction leads to better performance and range.

Stay tuned for the official BMW Megacity pricing once it’s released.

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BMW Wins Greenest Automaker of the Year

For the fifth year in a row BMW has won the Dow Jones Sustainability Index World award for Greenest Automaker of the Year. It’s odd since when most people think of green cars, their minds probably don’t jump to BMW, but in the eyes of Dow Jones, when you look at the full life cycle of BMW vehicles (from production to end of life recycling), along with their renewable energy applications in factories and transport, BMW comes out on top.

The index, which was only created in 1999, has never had another car manufacturer on the list.

Despite the constant acclaim from Dow Jones, is BMW really the “most sustainable automobile company worldwide”?  In the US it might be hard to imagine considering that BMW doesn’t really have much to offer in the four-cylinder category, let alone hybrid or electric vehicles.

If we can take anything away from this it’s that if BMW really is the greenest automaker in the world, the automaker’s of the world still have a very long way to go to improve their environmental standards. Not that BMW doesn’t make a great car. We’re still drooling over the BMW Vision (pictured above). With it’s ultra-efficient turbo-diesel engine, twin electric motors and 400-mile range, the Vision blends power and speed with top-of-the-line environmental technology.

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BMW Sedan and SUV Hybrids Coming this Fall

Along with BMW’s announcement of its first-quarter financial results, they have confirmed that they will be bringing two new hybrid vehicles into production this fall.

The first is the BMW X6 SUV Hybrid which will use their impressive 2-Mode hybrid drivetrain matched up with a 4.4L V8 engine.

The second is the BMW 7 Series Active Hybrid sedan. This luxury sedan will operate on a more mild hybrid powertrain which sees a 20 kW electric motor combined with a twin-turbo 4.4L V8 engine.

Each of the new BMW hybrids will have 20 percent better fuel efficiency than the gas-only versions.

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World Green Car of the Year Finalists Announced

The three World Green Car of the Year finalists were announced yesterday and they are: the Toyota iQ, the Mitsubishi iMiEV and the Honda FCX Clarity (pictured above).

The Toyota iQ is a diminutive four-seater. It runs off an impressive 1.0 liter engine that can get up to 67 mpg and has already won its own share of awards, including Japan’s Car of the Year Award.

The Mitsubishi iMiEV is an all-electric vehicle that has boasts outstanding handling and impressive acceleration. This sub-compact electric vehicle has an 85-mile range and a top speed of 80 mph.

The Honda FCX Clarity, is a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle with a 270 mile range on a full tank. Why calculate the range? Because you need to always be in range of one of the few filling stations out there. California, one of the few places to make a concerted effort to establish hydrogen fuel stations, still only has 24 to date. Will hydrogen be able to make the leap to a feasible infrastructure? Who knows, but it sure is tempting considering they run completely emission-free. Yes, I know, generating the hydrogen and running the stations isn’t emission free. If you have a problem with hydrogen fuel-cell cars take it up with the Governator.

Last year’s winner was the BMW 118d – a diesel car that gets 60 mpg. This year’s winner will be chosen on April 9.

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