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Driving tomorrow’s car

Driving tomorrow’s car may mean getting behind the wheel of vehicle that uses alternative fuels, gets better gas mileage, and has redesigned engines to help reduce air pollution and the effects of carbon dioxide emissions. Today's concept cars will be tomorrow's production cars. There are even plans for a car that will drive itself.

Toyota Prius automotive repair manual
by Tim Imhoff and John H Haynes.
Sparkford Nr Yeovil, Somerset, England : Haynes Pub. Group ; Newbury Park, Calif. : Haynes North America, c2007.
  1. "Models covered: Toyota Prius--2001 through 2008."
  2. "92081"--Cover.
  3. Includes index.
     
The complete idiot's guide to hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles
by Jack R. Nerad.
New York, N.Y. : Alpha Books, 2007.
#60;B #62; #60;I #62;New hope for motorists. #60;/I #62; #60;/B #62; #60;BR #62; #60;BR #62; With the rise in gasoline costs, the hybrid car has exploded into the fastest-growing segment of the American car industry. This book sorts out the dizzying array of choices faced by American motorists. In clear, jargon-free language, Nerad explains the nature of each kind of car and their advantages and disadvantages, so consumers can make a practical choice. #60;BR #62; The only book that includes all alternative fuel vehicles, including the hybrid #60;BR #62;
     
Plug-in hybrids : the cars that will recharge America
Sherry Boschert.
Gabriola Island, BC : New Society Publishers, c2006.
While hydrogen fuel-cell cars won't be ready for decades, the technology exists today for plug-in hybrids that can get over 100 mpg! This new kind of car can save drivers money, reduce pollution, and increase US security by reducing dependence on imported oil. What's more, there is major pent-up demand for such vehicles. So why aren't they freely available today?
     
The essential hybrid car handbook : a buyer's guide
Nick Yost.
Guilford : Lyons Press, c2006.
Wonder if now is the time to buy a hybrid car? The Essential Hybrid Car Handbook gives you all the information you need to make a decision. With a thorough comparison of all models on the road today, this one volume covers price, cost-effectiveness, technology, and ecological advantages.
     

Quality will remain an important feature of tomorrow’s car. According to the Federal Highway Administration in 2006 Americans traveled double the number of miles they did in 1980 and four times the number in 1957.  This may be one of the reasons many drivers are moving their home entertainment systems to their cars, expecting more state-of-the-art computer products, navigational systems, dvd players, and sound systems. Voice-controlled features are gaining popularity for their convenience and safety.

Alternative fuels are any materials that can be used as a fuel. Some alternative fuels include biodiesel, electricity, hydrogen, and even vegetable oil.

Alternative fuels

Fuel cell projects for the evil genius
Gavin Harper.
Maidenhead : McGraw-Hill Professional, 2007.
MORE THAN JUST SLIGHTLY EVIL: SAFE, INEXPENSIVE, EDUCATIONAL . . . AND FUN! "Fuel Cell Projects for the Evil Genius" is a fun and environmentally-aware project book for you - and the perfect follow-up to "Solar Energy Projects for the Evil Genius" (0-07-147772-1).The book specifically focuses on projects involving fuel cells--technologies that generate electrical power whose only waste output is water.
     
The hype about hydrogen : fact and fiction in the race to save the climate
Joseph J. Romm.
Washington, DC : Island Press, c2004.
Not long ago environmentalists, mainstream media commentators, industry analysts, General Motors, and even President Bush predicted that emission-free hydrogen fuel cells would ride to the rescue in a matter of years.
     

Look for new fuel sources to become practical. With increasing gas prices, tomorrow’s car may be using alternative fuel sources. Advances in methanol synthesis, used with improved fuel cell technology, could make it a viable alternative to gasoline.  Some manufacturers are experimenting with hydrogen fuels.

Those are not the only alternatives.  One car designer is working to harvest waste heat from a car’s exhaust pipe to produce fuel. Others are working to improve hybrid models. Hybrids integrate electric power into more conventional transmissions, adding to the miles per gallon the car gets.

As technologies improve and better systems are developed, the automotive industry will add them to their products. Increasing automotive sales is the name of the game. Creative marketing and innovative ideas will help shape tomorrow's car.

Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff