thecarnut.typepad.com > 2007 LOS ANGELES AUTO SHOW #1

Green Car of the Year(?)

Green Car of the Year(?)

Los Angeles Convention Center

Chevrolet's gigantic Tahoe SUV, with a 6 liter V8 engine, managed to snag an award which defied credulity to some observers. Yes, this Tahoe with that massive engine, was named the "Green Car of the Year" by Ron Cogan's "Green Car Magazine", an industry publication. Last year, the prize went to Toyota's hybrid Camry (which was, let's say, not a big surprise). GM has experience with this new-for-consumer-vehicles technology; they developed and have been building a heavy-duty two-mode transmission for urban transit buses which began production in 2003. GM says they have provided 388 hybrid propulsion systems, designed and built in Indianapolis, Indiana, for transit systems in 29 cities in North America and Yosemite National Park. GM also says they began 2006 with orders for an additional 216 dual-mode hybrid transmissions for bus systems. The new “consumer” version of the transmission uses two 60-kilowatt electric motors packaged inside the tranny itself, rather than depending on one large motor to “assist” the engine. GM, BMW and (what was then) DaimlerChrysler took the existing bus/truck transmission and re-worked it, mostly in Europe, for the past three years. The latest version of it can fit in the full-size pickup and SUV GM line-up and can improve fuel mileage, GM says, by up to 50% under certain circumstances. The V8 engine in this system, using what they call “Active Fuel Management”, can run on either four or eight cylinders, depending on the driver's demands for horsepower and torque. The trucks can run on electric-only, V8-only, or a combination of the two.

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