Electric cars are already a mainstay on Britain's roads, with several all-electric models being available to buy right now. A lot of them are simply electric versions of fuel-powered cars, but in the not-too-distant future, we'll see new designs around town and up and down the motorway.But just what electric cars are coming? Let us give you a closer look as to what you can expect to see in showrooms and when you're out driving in the next few years.Audi e-tron Quattro SUVThe Audi e-tron Quattro SUV concept was shown off at the Frankfurt Auto Show in 2015, and at the Geneva motor show in 2018, Audi unleashed three prototypes to prowl the streets of the Swiss city (we're sure it had nothing to do with trolling Jaguar and its I-Pace launch). The production car that you'll be able to buy will launch at the Brussels motorshow in August 2018. It will go head-to-head with the Jaguar I-Pace (which is on sale now), but has some cool features that will make it worth waiting for.Audi says it will … [Read more...] about Future electric cars: The battery powered tech cars that will be on the roads within the next 5 years
Sticking electric car window
Editor’s Picks Cheap Microfluidic Device Made From Paper and Tape Profile: Veebot The Spaser Nanolaser The automakers of the world are tearing the veil off their latest techno marvels, and this year their hottest offering is the automated car. No sooner did Nissan introduce the world’s first steer-by-wire car—the Infiniti Q50 highlighted in our 2013 Top Tech Cars—than Nissan chief Carlos Ghosn pledged to bring a self-driving car to showrooms by 2020. As our 2014 top-tech selections show, cars are … [Read more...] about 2014 Top Ten Tech Cars
Tesla continues to sell their swank Model S all-electric luxury cars as fast as their (admittedly very impressive) robot overlords and human minions can put them together. That’s great for Tesla but for EV shoppers who don’t have $60,000 to $100,000 to drop on Elon Musk’s dream machines, a Tesla in the driveway remains just that: a dream that is probably a winning lotto ticket or inheritance away.Next up is the Model X sedan (above) – no price yet and likely not cheap – but Tesla has also hinted that an actual affordable and as-yet unnamed model may be in the pipeline and with a 200-mile range to boot.Considering the Blue Collar Tesla will likely have to contend with fully-electric offerings in the $30,000 range from BMW, Mercedes, VW and others when it hits the streets in, say, 2015, I have a list of features I’d like to see (or not see) before I eBay my vintage motorcycle tail light collection for a down payment or at least a (very) small … [Read more...] about 5 things we hope Tesla remembers to include in their ‘budget’ car
After months of anticipation, Windows 10 finally arrived this week, and our Computing Editor Matt Smith (also a self-proclaimed abacus expert) has been hands on from the beginning. Matt fills listeners in on the ins and outs of the new OS, and whether or not it would be enough to convince an Apple user to make the switch.Have you heard of Luminor? It’s a paint-like substance that responds to electrical current, and a team of car customizers recently envisioned a creative new use for it: Slap it on a Lexus, strap up a driver with a wireless heart monitor, and all of the sudden you’ve got paint that changes colors and patterns based on your heartbeat. Will we see more automotive uses for it, or is this a one-time gimmick?Amazon has been advocating the use of drone deliveries for quite some time, and now the company is taking it to another level. In meetings with NASA, Amazon has concocted a proposal for regulating drone versus human airspace. Oh, … [Read more...] about Trends with Benefits: Windows 10, heartbeat paint and selfie drones
Every year, technological titans and scrappy startups alike descend on Las Vegas to show off the amazing products they’ve been quietly toiling away on all year – and offer consumers a glimpse at the future.There’s something new lurking around every corner at CES, the annual consumer electronics show in Las Vegas, and with 32 football fields worth of show floor, there are a lot of corners. We’re proud to say we turned them all.From affordable electric vehicles to immersive VR headsets and the usual spate of stunning TVs, nearly two dozen members of the Digital Trends crew spent days hoofing it around the Las Vegas Convention Center to discover it all.But it’s just the good stuff you’re interested in, right? We’ve got it all here. Our editors selected the 15 best new products that represent the pinnacle of their categories. Innovative, useful, and sometimes downright insane in just the right way, these are the gadgets that will leave you antsy … [Read more...] about Digital Trends Top Tech of CES 2016 award winners
Ford is a software company.Ford is an urbanization and city planning company. Ford is a technology company, an innovation company, a materials-science company, a privacy curator, and a public policy innovator.Oh yeah, I guess, when it comes down to it, Ford also makes cars, acknowledges Jim Buczkowski. But when we discuss the car of the future and Ford’s efforts to spearhead the dramatic integration of tech that’s changing cars completely, the “car” part seems almost incidental.“To just say, it’s got four wheels and different sheet metal and maybe a different power plant, that’s too short-sighted,” he told me over a Cobb salad. “We’re really looking at the long-term future.”The concept of a robot chauffeur: magical yet terrifying at the same time, isn’t it?Buczkowski, a 36-year veteran of the company, runs Ford’s electronics research group and manages research in advanced electronics; he’s concerned not … [Read more...] about To become a better car company, Ford had to become a technology company
This week, we were invited to Detroit to get a look at the just-officially announced Chevy Sonic and put the compact car through its first paces. Before we offer initial impressions, here’s the technical lowdown on the vehicle.The Sonic lines up against the likes of the Honda Fit, Ford Fiesta, and size- and feel-wise the Yaris, although it’s a higher quality car than the latter. The Sonic gives Chevy bragging rights, as it’s the only American-made small vehicle, and comes in sedan or hatchback (four-door and five-door, respectively) versions. Like its predecessors, it comes equipped with built-in OnStar (we got a chance to test the new OnStar app with remote key lock and engine startup – more on that later) as well as the more athletic, sporty look of the Cruze or Volt. Other tech-friendly features include XM Satellite radio, USB and SD card ports in the center console, and Bluetooth capability.Chevy told us the Sonic’s concept came out of its Korean … [Read more...] about Hands-on first impressions of the 2012 Chevy Sonic
BMWs may be great to drive, but they are not always great to look at. The makers of the “Ultimate Driving Machine” have not always been able to grace their creations with ultimate styling. The “flame surfaced” designs, like the last-generation 5 Series, were, to say the least, polarizing. The newer Bimmers are handsome, but, with the possible exception of the Z4, not beautiful. Thankfully, the company’s latest styling exercise, the Zagato Coupé, has none of those problems.Designed in collaboration with Italian styling house Zagato, the Coupé is downright gorgeous. It starts with the proportions: the classic long hood and short rear deck is still one of the best ways to make a car look good. Safety and interior volume considerations ruin a lot of production cars, but since the Zagato Coupé is a pure styling exercise, BMW was able to have at it.Of course, BMW and Zagato could have built an aesthetically pleasing coupe just by copying classic … [Read more...] about BMW Zagato Coupé: Is BMW getting out of its styling rut?
An interesting article published recently in the New York Times has me wondering if there isn’t a vast technological and industrial shift taking place in the United States – and maybe beyond – and how tech icon Elon Musk may be at the center of it, unintentionally or otherwise.In a nutshell, the Times story essentially said that electrical utilities are waking up to the fact that residential solar installations are stealing their business. While they currently generate less than 1 percent of the power in the United States, their proliferation may pose a threat to the very existence of power-generating utilities in the long term.If enough people slather solar panels on their homes and become energy self-sufficient, what would they need the utility for? To which I say: exactly. There is a missing variable in this math, but I think Mr. Musk is already beginning to rectify the situation.Power catch-22: net meteringPower companies are in a bit of pickle over … [Read more...] about Can Elon Musk solve the world’s energy needs through solar power and electric cars?
In a couple of interesting briefings last week, BlackBerry announced that its turnaround was finished, and Microsoft finally provided some information on its new connected car deliverables.One strange thing was that after CEO John Chen excitedly pointed out that BlackBerry had displaced Microsoft in Ford, he then announced a strategic initiative to work more closely with Microsoft's Azure platform on BlackBerry's own market-leading QNX car operating system. That showcased not only the massive changes in both companies, but also the really strange way this market is evolving.I'll close with my product of the week: a very low-cost wearable smartphone display that could get you through your next dentist appointment or boring sermon. With all the focus on the coming autonomous car and on BlackBerry's old phone business, most don't know that QNX, the operating system that BlackBerry acquired, is dominant in the car market, largely for car operations. To give you an idea, it currently is … [Read more...] about OPINION BlackBerry, Microsoft and the Ever-Smarter Connected Car