2014 Washington DC Auto Show opens to the public this friday

Cadillac ELR with Regen On Demand, Cadillac’s electric car, wins the Green Car Journal’s 2014 Green Car Technology Award 

The 2014 Washington (DC) Auto Show opens to the public on Friday, Jan. 24 ( ending Feb. 2) and there’s a lot to see this year. Click on the video above as Kimatni Rawlins of Automotive Rhythms takes you around the show floor for a sneak peek of this year’s event, and go to http://www.washingtonautoshow.com/ for show hours and ticket information.

In addition to all the automotive policy talk that the pre-show events and press conferences are known for, every year the big discussion always turns green. Make sure you stop by and see the Cadillac ELR Regen On Demand, Cadillac’s electric car, as it wins the Green Car Journal’s Green Car Technology Award for 2014. The prestigious award, which is the equivalent of the North American Car and Truck award for the gasoline engine vehicles, was presented at a Green Car Journal press conference during the Washington Auto Show’s second Policy Day.

“Cadillac has cleverly evolved a common electric-drive efficiency system into an intriguing feature that adds a new dimension to the driving experience,” said Ron Cogan, editor and publisher of Green Car Journal and CarsOfChange.com. “Ever-increasing efficiency is crucial to our driving future, yet efficiency itself is not an attraction for a great many car buyers. Cadillac’s Regen on Demand is an inspired example of how technology can increase efficiency while connecting with a driver, enhancing driving dynamics along the way.”

2014 Cadillac ELR

2014 Cadillac ELR

Like most regenerative braking systems in hybrid and electric vehicles, the ELR’s electric motor acts as a generator while braking, automatically recovering energy that’s delivered to the batteries as electricity. Unique to the ELR extended range electric vehicle, Regen on Demand also allows a driver to instantaneously engage and disengage regen at will by pulling back or releasing left or right steering wheel paddles. This not only creates electricity on demand, but enhances driving dynamics by inducing regen drag that allows decelerating before turns and in other circumstances, without braking or requiring a driver’s foot to reposition from the accelerator pedal.

“Regen on Demand is one of the key systems enabling the Cadillac ELR to merge performance with efficiency in a dynamic new way,” said Jim Vurpillat, director of emerging markets at Cadillac. “Putting regenerative braking at the driver’s fingertips supports the ELR’s 340-mile total driving range while also adding a fun-to-drive element matching the engaging design and performance of this premium luxury coupe.”

Along with Cadillac ELR’s Regen on Demand, 2014 Green Car Technology Award™ nominees include the Acura Sport Hybrid SH-AWD powertrain; Audi 3.0-liter TDI clean diesel engine; BMW i3 carbon fiber reinforced plastic passenger cell; Ford 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine; Honda Accord plug-in powertrain; Hyundai hydrogen fuel cell; Mazda i-ELOOP brake energy regeneration system; Porsche plug-in hybrid powertrain; and Ram Truck 3.0-liter EcoDiesel engine. Each of these finalists earns Green Car Journal’s 2014 Product of Excellence honor that acknowledges the important role they play in creating a new generation of highly efficient vehicles.

This year, the show planners have six car makers unloading truck loads of vehicles for you to test drive on the Washington DC streets — Cadillac, Scion, Toyota, Kia, Subaru and Volkswagen. The rides are available every day during the show, throughout the day. Check the show’s website for a complete schedule. And if you’re not feeling the cold weather, you can ride a variety of Jeep vehicles inside the show as part of the Jeep Adventure course, along with the popular Kid’s Zone. 

You’ll have to brave the snow and ice, but this show is worth the trouble as there will be a full complement of car and truck makers displaying their new toys for 2015. Enjoy!

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