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SUMMARY
BYD adds 'robot' assistant and rolls out Denza electric car concept. Kelly Blue Books picks top 10 green cars, five of them with e-drives from full electric to micro-hybrid. Strangely, the TRIAC electric 3-wheel materializes in China and IBM's Battery 500 Project moves closer to commercial lithium-air battery. These and more this week.
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INSIDER ILLUSTRATED EDITION 12.17

BYD ADDS 'ROBOT' ASSISTANT

If you’ve seen Pixar’s ‘Wall-e’ animated adventure love-story, you may see a striking similarity between ‘Eve’, the female robot, and BYD’s ‘i’ dashboard assistant. The little pop-up ‘robot’ is featured in the company’s new Qin (pronounced ‘chin’) electric hybrid sedan, the successor to the F3DM, first launched in 2008.

Few details have been released as of this writing, but speculation is that the little R2D2 will be a user interface terminal for the $24,000-to-$30,000 sedan’s infotainment network including wireless internet, cloud computing, location services, music downloads, driver fatigue detection, and voice control. There are also reports that it has a pair of built-in cameras, one function of which is to monitor the driver for fatigue and presumably to initiate a voice alert or volume increase in the audio system to keep the driver alert.

The Qin will use a 10kWh lithium iron-phosphate battery pack, which is smaller than the 16kWh unit in the F3DM, which has not been as successful a seller as was hoped. The company also revealed, along with Mercedes-Benz, their new Denza all-electric car brand. See page 10 for a photo. More info as it is available.

CONTINUED.....

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