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July 1, 2010
2010 Club Car Villager 2+2 Base price: $8,510 Price as tested: $8,783 Powertrain: 48-volt DC motor, 350-amp DC controller, 48-volt lead-acid battery pack, direct drive Horsepower: 5 Range per charge: 20 to 30 miles Maximum speed: 25 mph Dry weight: 1,129 lbs. $7,659 after 10% federal tax credit through Dec. 31, 2011 Final thoughts: Low-cost commute for light traffic
April 15, 2014 | Michael Hiltzik, The Economy Hub
Every battery needs recharging, and those that operate the Economy Hub are no exception. We'll be taking time off over the next two weeks. Blogging in that period will be sparse, on an as-needed basis only. Normal programming will resume on April 28.  
August 25, 2011 | By Susan Carpenter, Los Angeles Times
As the world's first mass-produced gasoline-electric car, the Toyota Prius has become the iPod of hybrids. More than 2 million of these automotive icons have been sold since the Prius was introduced in 1997, with mostly minor changes to its aerodynamic profile. But that's about to change with the 2012 Prius v — a larger version that looks as if growth hormones were slipped into the tank. Due in showrooms in October, the v — for "versatility" — lengthens the rear cargo hold on the regular Prius and ratchets up the hatch, opening up far more space in the back 40 without sacrificing too many miles per gallon.
There's a Stage 2 power alert and I could be taken offline any minute if the California Independent System Operator orders rolling blackouts. But I'm not worried. I have a backup system that will keep my PC running at least two hours--long enough to get through a typical blackout. To test my backup system, I staged my own blackout by switching off the circuit breaker that provides power to my office. I'm still working. I'm writing this column from my desktop PC, which is plugged into an xPower 600 backup power system that delivers 600 watts of AC electrical current.
July 4, 2011 | Roy Wallack, Gear
Getting out in nature for a hike or a trail run can offer an escape from the modern world. But that doesn't mean techie innovations should be left at home, especially when they enhance the experience in a quiet, unobtrusive way. If you want to get there or get back faster and safer, these lightweight devices can help. Pocket-size purifier SteriPEN Adventurer Opti: A 6-inch-long, 3.6-ounce water purifier that uses an LED ultraviolet light to destroy 99.9% of all bacteria, viruses and protozoa (such as giardia and cryptosporidium)
January 29, 1995
Michael Schrage's "Marketers Own the Electric Vehicle's Future, Not Engineers" (Jan. 19) is typical of the political approaches to battery-driven cars, which will not help with what is a problem in basic chemistry. When gasoline and air burn in a cylinder, the transfer of electrons and energy is quick and remarkably complete. Putting a few gallons of gasoline in a tank is fast and easy, while the air supplies itself. Not so with a battery. The same electrons must go through an "oxidizing" reaction, but the oxygen and the fuel must both be within the battery, and the oxidation goes slowly through some "electrolyte."
December 30, 2006
Re "EPA OKs fuel-cell car production," Dec. 24 I had to laugh reading that the EPA finally got around to approving the California Air Resources Board decision -- made three years ago -- to move away from battery electric technology and allow automakers to satisfy its zero-emissions requirements with fuel-cell vehicles. The irony is that in those three years, many fuel-cell advocates have concluded that the technology is fraught with challenging and expensive engineering problems. They are now once again looking at solutions that involve batteries.
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