Honda, GM, VW Debut Hybrids at Detroit Auto Show

by | Jan 15, 2013

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Honda, GM and Volkswagen are among the automakers showcasing environmentally friendly cars at the Detroit Auto Show, which opened yesterday.

The annual expo, with features more than 500 concept vehicles, cars and trucks, continues previous years’ trends towards more electric and hybrid vehicles with greater fuel efficiency. Here are some show highlights:

  • On Monday, Volkswagen debuted a plug-in hybrid diesel concept SUV with two electric motors, the LA Times reports. The CrossBlue will likely make it to the US market in 2014, according to the newspaper, and targets other family crossovers including the Ford Explorer, Dodge Durango and Nissan Pathfinder. The total output on the six- or seven-passenger vehicles is 306 horsepower.
  • Via Motors unveiled two electric vehicles, the 800-horsepower X-Truck and a Cadillac Escalade, both of which get 100 miles to the gallon, according to International Business Times. The car company — owned by former GM vice chairman Bob Lutz — buys GM cars and converts them into EVs. Via cars already feature in PG&E’s utility fleet in California, the newspaper reports.
  • International Business Times also says GM this week will showcase its first luxury plug-in hybrid: the $60,000 two-door 2014 Cadillac ELR.
  • The 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee comes with an alternative-fuel option, AutoBlog reports. The blog says Chrysler expects the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V6 will deliver 240 horsepower and 420 pound-feet of torque. It gets 21 miles per gallon in the city and 30 on the highway, and has a range of up to 730 miles on a single tank.
  • Also at the Detroit Auto Show, automotive battery supplier Johnson Controls introduced its 48-volt Micro Hybrid battery demonstration module (pictured). The system involves a low voltage lead-acid battery and a 48-volt lithium-ion battery.
  • And Honda Motor Co. will show the latest concept version of its 2016 Acura NSX sports car, which Automotive News reports has one of the world’s first high-output hybrid drive systems. The two-seater will enter production in two years.

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