Charging Ahead: 6 Facts About Electric Vehicles

Electric car charging stations
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Dive into the world of electric vehicles (EVs), where modern innovations intertwine with environmental mindfulness. Electric cars are not merely contemporary gadgets; their history traces back to the early stages of automotive evolution. Here are five captivating tidbits about the evolution, allure, and sustainable aspects of EVs.

1. Electric Cars: A Peek into the Past: Contrary to popular belief, electric vehicles were already cruising our roads at the start of the 20th century. Impressively, some pioneers of this era could achieve 25mph speeds and boasted a 50-mile range. Notably, an EV was the first to exceed 60mph in 1899.

2. The Electric Cab Trend in the Big Apple: The early 1900s saw electric cars earning their place in urban landscapes. Case in point: New York City had an impressive lineup of electric cabs, highlighting that EVs constituted around one-third of all vehicles during this epoch.

3. Open Access to Accelerate Evolution: Spearheading the EV movement, Tesla Motors took a groundbreaking step in 2014 by making all their intellectual property publicly accessible. Their ambition? To catalyze the development of EV tech. Echoing this sentiment, Toyota unveiled approximately 24,000 patents in 2019, showcasing their top-tier electric and hybrid innovations.

4. Efficient Design Equals Fewer Repairs: An often-overlooked benefit of EVs is their streamlined mechanics. An average electric motor contains close to 20 components, in stark contrast to the nearly 2,000 components in traditional internal combustion engine vehicles (ICEV). This simplicity translates to less frequent servicing and, subsequently, decreased lifetime expenses.

5. The Sustainable Edge in Production: In the battle of emissions, EVs hold a clear advantage. The associated emissions of EVs, spanning from their parts production to power generation, are markedly below those of their petrol-driven counterparts.

6. Harnessing the Power of V2G: The core of EVs is well-known: they operate on electric energy stored within. However, the innovative Vehicle-to-Grid (V2G) paradigm remains relatively obscure. This strategy reimagines EVs as portable power reserves capable of supplying the grid when required.

Seven Fascinating Tidbits You Didn’t Know About Toyota

 

Vehicles Toyota near the office of official dealer. Toyota Motor Corporation is a Japanese automotive manufacturer
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From its origins to its remarkable durability tests, Toyota has quite a few stories to tell. Take a ride through these seven interesting facts about the automotive giant:

1. City Takes the Name, Not the Other Way Around: Contrary to what one might assume, Toyota is not named after its hometown. The city, originally known as Koromo, actually rebranded itself as Toyota in 1959 because of the immense popularity the company had garnered.

2. The Toy ‘Yoda’ Incident: A Hooter’s restaurant once held a sales competition in 2001, promising a “new Toyota” as a prize. What they actually meant was a new toy “Yoda.” When a waitress won and was handed the Star Wars figure, she filed a lawsuit for fraudulent misrepresentation and won a settlement large enough to purchase a real car.

3. The Pickup that Refused to Die: The TV series Top Gear once put a Toyota pickup truck through extreme conditions, like submerging it in seawater and setting it on fire. Astonishingly, the truck still functioned after minor repairs, which were done using only the tools available in the truck’s own toolbox.

4. From Silk to Steel: Before becoming a car-making behemoth, Toyota was actually in the textile business, specializing in silk-weaving looms. Even today, their emblem—a thread passing through the eye of a needle—serves as a tribute to their original trade.

5. Why Not Toyoda?: Initially called Toyoda, the company held a renaming contest in 1936, which attracted over 27,000 entries. The name “Toyota” was selected because writing it in Japanese required eight strokes, a number considered lucky for wealth and prosperity.

6. The Philosophy of Kaizen: In 2013, instead of merely donating money to the New York Food Bank, Toyota applied its principle of Kaizen—meaning “continuous improvement.” Toyota engineers managed to reduce the waiting time at the soup kitchen from 90 to just 18 minutes by optimizing processes.

7. The Land Cruiser’s War-Time Origin: Toyota’s Land Cruiser has its roots in military history. During World War II, the Imperial Japanese Army got hold of an American Jeep and ordered Toyota to recreate it. The result was the creation of the iconic Land Cruiser.

Ingenious Fluid Mechanisms in Vintage Cars

During the 1960s, Volkswagen Beetles weren’t equipped with a pump for dispensing windshield washer fluid. Rather, they ingeniously utilized air pressure from the spare tire to perform this task. Vintage FIAT models, such as the 500 and 126, incorporated a rubber bulb on the dashboard, serving a similar function for washer fluid distribution. Moreover, the classic Porsche 356 had a unique approach with a rubber bulb placed on the floor, which could be activated by stomping on it.

Cadillac’s 1930s Policy Reversal: Embracing Diversity and Boosting Sales

In the beginning of the 1930s, Cadillac had a policy that prohibited the sale of cars to African Americans. However, in 1933, Nicholas Dreystadt, a mid-level manager at General Motors, boldly interrupted a GM executive committee meeting and persuaded them to abandon this policy, advocating for marketing efforts targeting the African American community. As a result, within just one year, Cadillac experienced a remarkable sales increase of 70%.