Audi A3 TDI and RenDiesel Synthetic Fuel average 40+ mpg across California

Audi A3 TDI and RenDiesel Synthetic Fuel average 40+ mpg across California

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Audi A3 TDI and RenDiesel Synthetic Fuel average 40+ mpg across California

Posted: 25 Oct 2010 07:46 AM PDT

Todd Kaho at the wheel of the Audi A3 TDI and RenDiesel Synthetic Fuel

Two Audi A3 TDI models running on Rentech, Inc. (NYSE AMEX: RTK) synthetic RenDiesel® fuel flawlessly completed the 1,000-mile ‘Eureka! Diesel Drives the Future’ tour spanning the length of California.

The endurance drive, part of the ‘2010 Green Car of the Year Tour’, started in Eureka, California on Monday, October 18 with the intent of demonstrating that today’s diesel technology and advanced synthetic fuels each offer significant green advantages. Clean diesel engines can make significant contributions in the push to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and fuel consumption to make America less reliant on imported oil. Combining clean diesel technology with ultra-clean synthetic fuels can further reduce both greenhouse gases and tailpipe emissions.

  • ‘Eureka! Diesel Drives the Future’ drive raised awareness with California political leaders, consumers on 1,000-mile drive
  • The journey was a crowning moment for the Audi A3 TDI as the ‘2010 Green Car of the Year®’
  • Two cars on the tour averaged 40 and 43 mpg on RenDiesel

Currently available in the market, the Audi A3 TDI provides environmental benefits by producing about 30% less greenhouse gas than a car powered by a comparable gasoline engine, with up to 50% better fuel economy.

The potential of clean-burning synthetic diesel, such as RenDiesel, to produce even less emissions, indeed points to a bright future ahead for Audi TDI technology as a viable green solution.

“The benefits of modern clean diesels like the Audi A3 TDI are apparent on many levels, from improved environmental performance to providing the kind of driving performance people expect,” said Ron Cogan, editor and publisher of Green Car Journal and editor of “Operating on advanced, clean burning fuels like synthetic RenDiesel simply makes the diesel equation even more compelling.”

“We are proud to have partnered with Audi and Green Car Journal on this successful 1,000 mile journey which demonstrated that domestically produced synthetic RenDiesel is a viable solution today to reducing vehicle tailpipe and greenhouse gas emissions,” said D. Hunt Ramsbottom, President and CEO of Rentech. “The environmental and performance benefits of RenDiesel seen while driving the Audi A3 TDI show promise for a clean diesel energy future,” Mr. Ramsbottom added.

The two Audi A3 TDIs on the demonstration tour are representative of the clean diesel technology that earned the prestigious Green Car of the Year award at last year’s Los Angeles Auto Show. The vehicles ran the entire route, from the farthest reaches of northern California to southern California, on Rentech’s synthetic diesel fuel, expected to be produced in commercial quantities in a few years at the Company’s new project in Rialto, California, that will produce synthetic diesel fuel from green waste and other organic materials diverted from landfills.

The RenDiesel fuel used on this drive was produced from natural gas at Rentech’s demonstration plant in Colorado. RenDiesel can also be made from synthetic gas produced from biomass and waste resources. RenDiesel provides a viable solution that can be deployed to minimize the transportation sector’s environmental impact. The renewable RenDiesel to be produced at Rentech’s Rialto Project is expected to reduce GHG emissions on a lifecycle basis by as much as 97% over conventional diesel fuel and by a comparable amount over electric vehicles. A vehicle using RenDiesel is also expected to be as much as two times more fuel efficient than one running on ethanol. RenDiesel contains approximately 60% more energy per gallon than ethanol and diesel engines typically achieve 20-40% more miles per gallon than gasoline engines. RenDiesel also produces fewer volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions than ethanol or traditional diesel.

Throughout the ‘Eureka! Diesel Drives the Future’ demonstration drive, one of the Audi A3 TDIs achieved 39.7 mpg on average, while the other car averaged 43 mpg. The Audi A3 TDI has an EPA average highway fuel economy rating of 42 mpg on traditional clean diesel fuel. The results were promising, demonstrating that RenDiesel synthetic fuel can operate for more than 1000 miles with no noticeable differences in performance compared to traditional fuels, and research is planned to confirm that this performance can persist over the full lifecycle of vehicles such as the Audi A3.

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The TECHART GrandGT Panamera

Posted: 25 Oct 2010 06:05 AM PDT

TECHART GrandGT Panamera

Gallery after the jump!

Based on the Porsche Panamera, the TECHART GrandGT combines all of the features, for which TECHART is known, into one program – exceptional sportiness in combination with unique comfort. The masculine and extravagant level of the Panamera individualization will celebrate its world premiere at the Auto Zurich Car Show from November 11 to 14, 2010.

Exceptional Character – Visible and Invisible

Original TECHART programs have always stood for highest quality. This fundamental principle has been incorporated in TECHART’s new exterior package for the Panamera without any compromises. The consistent and intelligent use of selected high-tech materials and a unique style of design ensure that the TECHART GrandGT leverages its exceptional character.

Hidden Qualities: The Material

GT – uniquely sporty, which is embodied by the program not only in design. The GrandGT internalizes it as well. The exterior package consists of a fiber-reinforced composite based on carbon, glass-fiber-reinforced plastic and polyurethane RIM components. These materials are primarily used in motor sports and are distinguished by their extraordinary product characteristics. The exterior components of the TECHART GrandGT program are remarkable, among other things, thanks to an impressive dimensional stability, great strength and low intrinsic weight. 

Impressive Appearance: The Design

The TECHART GrandGT favors a spectacular performance. The TECHART-typical exterior design catches the eye of onlookers immediately. The powerful front bumper with integrated splitter and large ventilation intakes, for an improved supply of fresh air to the intercooler and an optimum cooling of the brake system, flawlessly underlines the dynamic contours. TECHART-typical: the sporty four-seater’s suitability for everyday use. The multifunctional daytime running lights that are integrated in the front bumper give the Panamera not only a distinctive appearance. It combines daytime running lights, position lights, parking lights and turn signals as LED system unit in a common housing and integrates seamlessly in the design of the Panamera’s front. An additional design highlight is the TECHART Aero engine hood that is constructed of high-quality carbon fibers, with integrated air outlets for an optimized regulation of the heat balance in the engine compartment and which impressively completes the GrandGT program for the Panamera’s front end.

Powerful side skirts and flared fenders increase the width of the Panamera by 21mm on each side of the front axle compared to the standard vehicle and 42mm on each side of the rear axle, resulting in a wider track and thus improved cornering abilities. Typical TECHART: attention to detail. Headlight trims or trim slats for the side air outlets made of high-quality polyurethane RIM set elegant highlights on the side of the vehicle in individual colour combinations and emphasize the dynamic appearance of the GrandGT.

The design of the rear end incorporates the front’s design and emphasizes the unique character of the GrandGT – sporty, confident and masculine. In combination with the TECHART roof spoiler, the much larger rear spoiler compared to the first Panamera Program, results in even less lift at the rear axle and greater driving stability and active safety – even at high speed. An additional GrandGT design feature: the distinctive rear apron with integrated air openings and matching diffuser. The oval dual tail pipes of TECHART’s sporty exhaust system, which are fully integrated in the vehicle’s rear end, optimally complete the exterior tuning package. As an alternative, a sporty exhaust system with valve control can be selected – for audible more sportiness. 

Exceptional Sportiness: The Performance

Taking a look under the Aero-engine hood, the GrandGT is still impressive. The TECHART Engine styling package consisting of carbon fiber cylinder-head covers with an embossed TECHART logotype as well as accentuating highlights in flash red is demonstrating the power of the car already in standstill. The TECHART powerkit TA 070/T1 boosts the power output oft the 4.8 l twin-turbo engine from 368 kW to 426 kW. The generated torque increases from 700 Nm to powerful 830 Nm. Pushing the standard sport button the Panamera has a significant increase of performance and driving dynamics. The TECHART engine management TECHTRONIC comes up with a number of impressive product features. The intelligent electronic power management convinces with quick and easy installation as well as maintaining the electronic engine protection features and the vehicle diagnostics and servicing. Like every factory-new TECHART product, the high quality standard of the TECHART powerkit is backed by a two-year limited warranty. Furthermore TECHART grants an additional warranty on damages at engine or gearbox if caused by the TECHART powerkit.

Consistent design and inimitable style – this also applies to the original TECHART wheels. No matter which of the three wheel designs the customer will choose, besides attractive standard colour variants, all TECHART wheels are available in individually matched custom colours. For the TECHART GrandGT Program the TECHART Formula light alloy wheels are available in 20- and 21-inch, the TECHART Formula II design in 22-inch and the TECHART Formula III forged light alloy wheels in 21- and 22-inch.

Unique Comfort – The Interior

The passion for perfection and the use of high-quality materials form the focal point of interior individualization of the TECHART GrandGT based on the Porsche Panamera. TECHART interiors are distinguished by exceptional quality. Ranging from setting fine accents such as decorative stitching in custom colour or parts in fine wood trim through to unique interior packages refined in all details, care and precision in the workmanship provided by the TECHART in-house manufactory are unique.

TECHART guarantees a great ride at all four seats thanks to the wide variety of entertainment options available for the Panamera. For instance, TECHART offers, among other things, an entertainment package with two 7-inch screens that are seamlessly integrated in the design of the front seat backrests, incorporated in a high-quality leather screen console matching the colour of the vehicle’s interior, for entertainment in the rear passenger compartment of the four-seater. A highlight for the Panamera: the TECHART center console unit for adding a 12V outlet and integrated cupholder to the storage compartment located in the rear passenger compartment. Exclusively available for the Panamera: TECHART rear fold-away tables. Thanks to rugged mechanisms and high-quality materials, the fold-away tables can be used, on the one hand, as a mobile work space for when on the road and as a personal area for relaxing when on long trips.
Premiere in Zurich and Essen

The TECHART GrandGT Program as well as the new TECHART MAGNUM will be presented in November. From the 11. to the 14. November 201 the Auto Zurich Car Show will be the location of the world premiere. The Germany premiere of both individualization programs will be the Essen Motor Show from the 27. November to the 5. December 2010. 


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Day 3: Eureka! Diesel Drives the Future

Posted: 22 Oct 2010 06:19 PM PDT

Rialto Press Conference

Todd Kaho, Green Car Journal
“We started really early, fueling up at San Luis Obispo’s JB Dewar commercial fueling station where we had shipped four cans of RenDiesel fuel. A quick stop at Starbucks got us going. We headed out southbound on U.S. 101 toward Santa Barbara in light fog. There were 258 miles to cover before reaching our noon deadline in Rialto. We drove through rain as we approached L.A. and figured this could be a problem for our scheduled arrival, but we powered through and made it there in plenty of time.”

Ron Cogan, Editor and Publisher of the Green Car Journal
“We arrived in Rialto and met up in a park not far from the site of the outdoor press conference and ceremony. There, we found lots of Rialto police officers waiting to give us the full red-lights-and-siren escort arrival. These guys were pretty amazing. We’ve been in a few police escorts before with the California Fuel Cell Partnership rally and the Challenge Bibendum, but there we were one of many vehicles being escorted. This time, it was just us in our two matching black Audi A3 TDIs. Lines of cars were pulled to the curb as we passed and people craned their necks to see who we were. I felt like the President!”

Todd Kaho, Green Car Journal
“The City of Rialto pulled out all the stops, and for good reason. The planned Rentech synthetic fuel production facility could bring up to 1,000 new ‘green’ jobs to the area. Proclamations were presented to Hunt Ramsbottom from Rentech and Brad Stertz from Audi to commemorate the occasion. Then we were treated to another police escort out of town to help get us in motion. This was the longest day of the tour and we would be racking up nearly 500 miles of driving along the way.”

Ron Cogan, Editor and Publisher of the Green Car Journal
“We were able to get past the area’s problem traffic areas before most people were on the road and headed home, quite a relief. We stopped at Miramar Audi in San Diego to refuel with the RenDiesel shipped there, reaching our goal of traveling the complete length of California from top to bottom … over 1,000 miles. A reporter even came out to document our arrival for San Diego’s’ two network affiliates.”

Todd Kaho, Green Car Journal
“We may have made our goal of reaching San Diego, but our day was not over. Now we had to double back to L.A. for our Green Car of the Year Tour wrap-up event the next day. Timing is everything when it comes to rush hour traffic in Southern California, so we ‘refueled’ ourselves with a nice dinner before getting on the freeway. That was a good strategic move since most traffic was over by the time we were done. On the final leg from San Diego to L.A., the RenDiesel-fueled Audi A3 TDI achieved the highest average fuel economy of the trip with a combined 43.7 mpg showing on the trip computer.”

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  1. Day Two: Eureka! Diesel Drives the Future

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