Traffic is, apparently, a hot button issue. First IBM came out with its Commuter Pain Index, a look at the cities with the world’s most painful commutes, and now Audi has released its Road Frustration Index, a real-time site that quantifies driver frustration in different parts of the U.S.
The collection of new concepts from the 2011 Frankfurt Auto show spans from an urban commuter to a beach buggy.
PSFK has kept an eye on the revival of the small car market and brought you coverage of vehicles from Mini, Ford, VW, BMW and Fiat to name a few. For the upcoming 2011 Frankfurt Auto Show, Audi is planning to unveil a new concept car which is even smaller. Called the Audi Urban Concept, the vehicle is something like a cross between a covered motorcycle and a large go-kart. Audi has developed the concept as an ultra-light car for congested urban spaces. It seats two people in a staggered front to back layout.
BMW’S designers and engineers have long vowed that the company’s eventual battery-powered cars would not be geekmobiles but true BMWs, with all the zip, handling and style that the German automaker is known for. Norbert Reithofer, the chief executive, is fond of saying that an environmentally friendly auto should not be “a vow of poverty on wheels.”
It can seem crazy to think that electric vehicles will replace gasoline engines anytime in the near future: range anxiety, charging times, price, and plain old inertia are all touted as deal-killers. But a new study found that drivers actually preferred their electric car over their conventional clunker (or even a Porsche and Lexus in some cases) after a trial program leasing 450 electric Mini E’s to drivers in Los Angeles, New York, and New Jersey.
According to Connected Planet, Ford Motor Company chief technology officer and vice president of research Paul Mascarena and his team are looking into ways of developing a connected mobile network using the cars themselves, to help avoid accidents, identify the locations traffic jams and aid Internet access.