Vehicles are fit for the ‘hybrid highway’

| December 31, 2015 | 0 Comments
MERCEDES S550 hybrid features ultrasonic sensors.

MERCEDES S550 hybrid features ultrasonic sensors.

Plug it in, go to sleep and wake up with a full tank… uh, battery. Just plug in the car cord in your charging station at home or at a specially marked parking space at the mall. Soon—spark-spark—you’re on the road. When the battery runs low in some plug-ins, a gasoline engine will take over.

The 2015 Los Angeles Auto Show debuted a full range of hybrids featuring the newest in technology.

Recently, going “the green way” meant driving the top selling, yet frumpy looking Prius hybrid with minimalist maneuverability. Toyota watched as the competition saw its Prius Division rolling in hybrid profits. More carmakers jumped on the hybrid highway, offering dramatic designs and lighter lithium batteries. Based on looks alone, the “prototype” Prius, which was unveiled at the Auto Show at the Convention Center, is an entry-level winner.

Perhaps you’re looking for a more sophisticated vision? No problem. There’s a new stable of stylish European plug-ins for your “green” driving excitement. For example, there’s the Porsche Panamera S plug-in, a $94,000 sexy sedan with the Porsche brand design and racing characteristics like 165 miles-per-hour top speed.  Porsche claims 50 mpg with this stallion.

Not to be outdone, Mercedes-Benz rolled out an elegant S550 plug-in model immersed in Mercedes technology and luxury.

There’s an abundance of safety technology with collision-avoidance systems, cameras on all sides, radar transceivers and ultrasonic sensors. The car also monitors traffic, tracks pedestrians, and even watches your back. It will get 40 mpg.  Oh, it also parks itself!

BMW joined the hybrid game with its tightly tuned plug-in sedans. Their legendary autos received too many negatives for dated designs. It seems they saved the best ideas for their all-electrics. More ho hums from the Audi e-tron family, trying to be a different hybrid and still looking like the same old Audi. Inside and out, you will find more of yesterday’s touches still dominating the new Audis. It’s difficult to distinguish their latest cars from current models. Even Audi’s 2018 e-tron concept already appears outmoded.

For those of you who don’t want to bother with plugging in your car when you get home, there’s a unique plugless option for the gorgeous Cadillac ELR. Just park the car over a flat circular pad easily installed in your garage floor, and presto, charge your battery wirelessly. As for me, I’ll endure pulling out the car cord and plugging in my Mercedes S550, just as soon as my $99,000 bonus check arrives.

By Steven Rosenthal

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Category: Real Estate

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