Automotive

4 electric car myths, debunked

What you should know about the car of the future

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Did you know that the first electric vehicle was invented by Scottish inventor Robert Anderson in 1832? Back then, electricity-powered cars were nothing but curiosities and novelties. Now, electric vehicles are readying themselves to take over the car industry in just a few decades.

As with all revolutionary technology, reception for electric cars is lukewarm at best. Most consumers are still wary with converting to full electric, citing an unstable and uncertain future for the industry.

With the car and fuel industry hanging in the balance, gas car companies have a lot to gain by downplaying the benefits of electric vehicles. Due to the lack of information available, unproven myths inevitably pop up. Myths, as always, need to be debunked especially when electric cars overtake gas car production.

Myth 1: Electric cars are more expensive than gas cars

The cost of an electric vehicle is the most hotly contested aspect of EVs. Admittedly, the world’s most famous electric car, the Tesla Model S, still falls under the luxury car category. The battery-powered car still hovers around the US$ 100,000 range.

Budget-friendlier alternatives are out now, but their price ranges are still a bit more than a conventional car. The Chevrolet Bolt and the Nissan Leaf both cost around US$ 40,000, for example.

Illustrations by Yanni Panesa

 

Additionally, installing a home charging station compounds that price by about US$ 600.

It’s no surprise that most consumers are turned off by the exorbitant costs of EVs. However, the one-time price tag fails to show how much cheaper it is in the long run.

Right now, the cost of one kilowatt-hour (the standard for EVs) is below the cost of one liter of gasoline. Roughly estimating, one kWh costs 20 cents, while one liter of gas costs US$ 1, according to today’s standards.

The Nissan Leaf carries a 40kWh battery. Charging it to full will cost 40kWh x US$ 0.20 = US$ 8. Meanwhile, a 40L gas car will cost 40L x US$ 1 = US$ 40. Added with a much steeper maintenance cost, gasoline vehicles will quickly overtake the cost of EVs in the long run. (Of course, actual costs will still vary on usage, real prices, and road conditions.)

Myth 2: EVs don’t perform as well as gas cars

Don’t be fooled. Even if EVs are remarkably silent on the road, they are hiding powerful engines that are quickly catching up to the standards of speed today.

At their core, gasoline vehicles are inherently faulty. Their emissions aren’t only a hit on air pollution; they also mean that a car wastes a huge portion of their energy through heat, smoke, and other harmful pollutants.

On the other hand, EVs convert up to 62 percent of their stored energy for movement. For comparison, gas cars only use up 21 percent of their energy.

In terms of mileage, EVs can travel up to 193 kilometers on a full charge, adequate for a day’s worth of traveling. However, gas cars still rule the road by hundreds of kilometers more. It’s only a matter of time before EVs catch up, though. The industry-leading Tesla Model S 100D already tops out at 530+ kilometers.

Finally, when it comes to speed, EVs can do well to catch up with you in traffic. For example, both the Nissan Leaf and the Chevrolet Bolt reach speeds of up to 150km/h. While the more widely available EVs can still be woefully left in the dirt on a straightaway, the Tesla Model X blazes through with a top speed of 250km/h.

Amid all of this, EVs do their jobs quietly. If you’re not paying attention, an EV can sneak up on you from behind. Besides air pollution, EVs avoid noise pollution, too.

Myth 3: Maintaining an EV is more trouble than it’s worth

Both an EV and a gas car take you from one place to the other. EVs just do it with far fewer components. Unlike conventional cars, EVs aren’t frequent visitors to the mechanics. Fewer parts mean fewer components to maintain.

That doesn’t mean that everything is breezy, though. Replacing the battery is a nightmare for your budgeting. For example, a Nissan Leaf replacement battery costs US$ 5,499.

Thankfully, batteries are a lot more durable than you would expect. The Nissan Leaf guarantees a battery life of eight years or 100,000 miles (or approximately 161,000 kilometers). Most electric car brands already offer warranties (including replacements) before their batteries expire. Moreover, electric car batteries are completely recyclable. You might even get a trade-in return for your old battery.

Currently, the only hurdle impeding an electric car’s maintenance is the lack of able mechanics who specialize in EVs. On the bright side, by the time that you’ll need a thorough repair on your EV, the employment industry will have evolved to accommodate your needs.

Myth 4: Electric vehicles are the saviors of the environment

There is no doubt that EVs eliminate the carbon emissions that gas cars will always emit. Even from their construction, EVs carry a design trait that puts them beyond gas cars: They don’t have a tailpipe.

Currently, 75 percent of air pollution comes from motor vehicles. With their energy-efficient design, EVs eliminate the pollution caused by carbon emission. Converting to an EV is one of the greenest decisions you can make to save the environment.

However, it has its own fair share of gray areas. Critics often share the myth that EVs only displace the emissions from the tailpipe to a coal plant’s smoke stack.

Which is partly true.

 

On their own, the world’s main methods of producing power are terribly unprepared for a sudden surge in demand. Despite recent developments in renewable energy, coal power is still the world’s leading generator of electricity.

Hypothetically, if everyone in the world adopted EVs right now, coal plants would have to exponentially increase their output, creating more smokestack emissions as a result.

Luckily, the world isn’t ready to go full EV yet. Early predictions still date the takeover to 2040. We still have a lot of time to adjust our energy consumption for more energy-efficient means, like solar, hydro, and nuclear.

In reality, EVs can’t save the world by themselves. The myth that they just displace damage is only half-true. However, the environment can’t survive with 50 percent solutions. It has to rely on us changing our perspectives on energy.

Electric vehicles are the future. But with unchecked energy consumption rates, that future can look quite grim.

SEE ALSO: The Best Car Tech of CES 2018

Automotive

Ford Territory: Feel at ease while traveling in style

A feature-packed SUV with driver-assist technologies

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Ford Territory

When you see a Ford badge slapped onto a car, it is safe to assume it inherently will deliver in terms of quality and capabilities. The all-new Ford Territory is the carmaker’s take on a reasonably priced compact SUV. Ford presumably partnered up with JMC (Chinese automobile manufacturer) to trim down the costs in production while still ensuring quality by staying true to Ford’s expertise in design, engineering, and manufacturing.

This five-seater SUV comes equipped with safety features and the latest driver-assist technologies that meet global standards to give you a safe, convenient and comfortable driving experience. Does it stay true to Ford’s SUV heritage? Well, let’s find out!

Ford Territory

A real eye candy

Sophistication and toughness — it’s the best of both worlds.

Ford Territory

Up front, it features Ford’s signature trapezoidal grille, put together with sleek LED headlamps. It also has a pair of fog lamps and daytime running LED lights for more on-road visibility. A silver skid plate protects the underside of the front bumper in a fashionable manner.

Ford Territory

On the side panels are evident character lines with a floating roofline design that gives the car that striking appeal. Nice chrome accents on door handles, waistline and side claddings.


Armed with power folding side mirrors with turn signal repeaters.

Not only that, the mirrors also have underside puddle lights to illuminate the ground when you’re getting in and out of the car at night. Because who wants to step on something gross and then step on their car’s matting? No one!

Ford Territory
The Ford Territory comes with two-tone 18” multi-spoke alloy wheels. With a ground clearance of 180mm, you will have no problem traversing bumpy roads.

Looking at the back from afar, it’s as striking as the front and sides. Those curves!

Ford Territory

The trendy LED taillights are complimented by a chrome bar. A high-mount brake light comes pre-installed so you don’t have to.

Two not-so-fake-looking exhaust tips attached to the rear bumper skid plate add a sporty look. The real exhaust can be seen if you look down a little further.

The presence of the bold ‘Territory’ badge is somehow stating that this is a true SUV.

Ford Territory
Lift up the trunk and you’ll get plenty of cargo space for your usual grocery trips and travel necessities. It also has functional roof rails where you can attach a roof rack if you need to haul more items.

Ford Territory

The spare tire is located underneath the cargo floor along with a jack kit. You can store more essential tools in there if you need to.

Premium touch

Entering the Territory is easy, thanks to its keyless entry feature. By a push of a button, doors get unlocked as long as the key is within proximity range.

Interior

Ford Territory

Ford Territory

I liked how refreshing the interior looks. The combination of premium materials and incorporation of modern technology blend perfectly. The wooden trims that go around the door panels and dashboard give it an earthy feel.

Blending nature to indoor spaces is quite common in contemporary homes. That’s what came to my mind upon opening the panoramic moonroof. Letting more natural light get in the cabin makes you feel more connected to your surroundings.

Digital dashboard and more tech

With its 10-inch touchscreen infotainment system, you can control the audio, air conditioning, ambient lighting color and more. Connecting your smartphone is made easy through Apple Carplay and Android Auto. Some functions won’t work while the car is moving so that the driver won’t be tempted to navigate the screen while driving.

The crisp 10-inch digital instrument cluster displays your driving information as well as the tire pressure monitoring system. The display theme is also customizable to suit your mood.

Having a wireless charging port comes in handy especially for long drives. Just make sure your phone is compatible and you’re good to go.


Ambient lighting enhances the mood of travel. It’s not distracting so you can enjoy it as much as you want. The only downside is that it is only visible at night.


These perforated leather seats are very comfortable. And the front two seats are heated/cooled for added comfort.

Legroom is not a problem in this car. Five passengers can travel with comfort. There is no large hump on the middle portion of the floor at the backseat. So, those who will sit in the middle won’t have a hard time finding a comfortable spot for their feet.

For the back passengers, the two air condition vents strive to do its cooling task. On a very hot day though, its coldness is insufficient.

The steering wheel is easy on the grip, thanks to its stylish perforated leather wrap. Controls for the instrument cluster and hands-free phone calls are on the steering wheel.

Along with other features are:

Scattered USB charging ports

Elevated center armrest with cup holders (backseat)

12V socket at the trunk

And an auto-dimming rearview mirror.

Behind it is a high-mount USB port intended for dashcams or GoPro (dangling cables no more).

Minimalist cockpit controls

The layout of the center console is intuitive and easy to grasp.

Placement of buttons and toggle switches are easily accessible. It’s also equipped with an electronic parking brake that replaces the traditional hand-operated parking brake.

A wheel knob controls the volume of radio/music player. It also has a cup holder, perfect for coffee lovers out there.

Beside it is a very usable, spacious gate-fold-open storage space.

Inserting keys are slowly becoming a thing of the past with these modern cars. Just push a button and it’ll bring its engine to life. We usually see this feature exclusively on higher tier cars so it is great to have this in the Territory.

What is it like behind the wheel?

Driving the Ford Territory is piece of cake. I felt confident and safe while taking it on the road.

This proves that this car was designed with convenience and safety as the top priority in mind. Steering is very light, like butter. The car is very sturdy on bumps and stable even on sharp turns.

What gives it power is a 1.5L Ecoboost engine paired with a CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission). It delivers sufficient power at 143ps and 225Nm of torque.

In normal “Drive” mode, there’s a noticeable slight delayed response on the accelerator. However, if you put it in ‘Sport’ mode, you’ll be satisfied with the performance. It manages to reach 0-60km/hr in around 4.5-5 seconds. That’s nowhere near a Mustang. But for a 1.5L engine in a big bodied car, that’s impressive.

Having a CVT made it easy on fuel consumption, supposedly. Granted that it is an SUV, it’ll consume more fuel compared to smaller MPVs and compact sedans. It squeezes around 8-10km/liter for city driving and 15km/liter on a highway.

Engine noise and unnecessary background noise is down to a minimum while you are inside the car, offering you a relaxed ride.

Safety is always a priority

Cameras installed at the front, rear and under side mirrors add an all-around vision.

The Ford Territory has advanced driver-assist safety technologies — the Ford Co-Pilot360.


HD 360-Degree camera lets you monitor the surroundings closely when backing up. At night, the cameras capture the areas well. Which is a really big help. The 360-view displays simulated aerial view of the car that helps the driver in avoiding obstacles on-the-fly.

The Territory can also parallel park by itself, upon driver’s command, with its Enhanced Active Park Assist. It also helps in reverse perpendicular parking.


Autonomous Emergency Braking, aided by a radar on the front chin, alerts you to a potential collision.


Proximity sensors help the driver in getting in and out tight spaces.

The Territory is equipped with six all-round airbags (front, side pillars and curtains) protecting passengers from every side. It also has adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning, auto brake hold function and blind spot information system.

These safety features are all convenient and helpful, but it is safer to always check your surroundings when driving.

Verdict

The Ford Territory is all-in-all, ideal for daily use. Whether going on a ride alone or with friends and family, it’ll give you superb comfort and convenience so you can own every moment. All the functional features and aesthetically pleasing ornamentation show the extensive thought process that this car went through. A good car is a good car, regardless where it was made. It is undoubtedly a true Ford SUV.

Pricing and availability

The Ford Territory Trend is available at a starting price of PhP 1,277,000. If you want to get all the safety features, the Ford Territory Titanium+ is priced at PhP 1,310,000. It comes in six different colors: Ruby Red, Diffused Silver, Panther Black, Crystal Pearl White, Moonstone Blue and Star White.

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Automotive

Sharp installs air purifying tech in Singapore cabs

The Plasmacluster Car Air Purifier will be in 240 local cabs

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Sharp Air

Singapore is back to Phase 2 (Heightened Alert) due to the resurgence of COVID-19 cases. In response to the situation, Sharp is rolling out a nationwide installation of its Plasmacluster Car Air Purifier in 240 local cabs by June 2021.

The move was done to help protect cab drivers who are the first to interact with international tourists as they enter Singapore. They are responsible for bringing travelers across the island and thus must be protected.

Clean air inside the enclosed space of the car is of utmost importance and that’s why Sharp stepped in. A study from Japan showed that Sharp’s Plasmacluster Technology is capable of reducing over 90 percent of SARS-CoV-2 virus within 30 seconds.

Sharp Air

Sharp has had the technology and has been improving upon it since 2004. It’s present in all of their products that have anything to do with air treatment.

This move is part of Sharp’s “Travel Safe in Comfort” campaign. It’s the company’s way of giving back so both the taxi drivers and passengers feel at ease knowing they’re safe, comfortable, and hygienic, as they travel within island.

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Automotive

Nissan Ariya rolls on the iconic Circuit de Monaco for its public drive

Zero-emission goodness

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Nissan has always demonstrated their commitment to innovation. The legendary Skyline GTR, back in its motorsports heyday, earned the nickname “Godzilla” with its dominance on the track. In the dawn of a new era, Nissan ventured to the all-electric crossover SUV segment with the new Nissan Ariya.

On May 24, 2021, the Nissan Ariya set wheels in Monaco. The place has a rich history in Grand Prix. It’s perfect for the first-ever public appearance of the Nissan Ariya. After all, the Ariya is representing the pinnacle of Nissan’s technologies and design.

A stunning futuristic vehicle paired with the ever-so glamorous sceneries of Monaco is truly a wonderful sight. Making laps displayed the capabilities of the e-4ORCE technology.

“Ariya is the epitome of Nissan’s innovation in electric mobility and this event marks a defining moment in the next chapter of Nissan’s EV journey,” as said by Arnaud Charpentier (Region Vice President, Product Strategy and Pricing, Nissan AMIEO).

The Ariya will surely bring a new and exciting way to move. Towards the end of 2021, some parts of the world will be able to enjoy this ‘force of wonder’.

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