Auto briefs: Sanitation, zero emission sales, miniature car wash

Projects to improve sanitation and clean water in India and Mexico, a goal for electric and zero emission sales, and a miniature car wash to test paint samples were among the items promoted by automakers recently.

  • Ford recently announced that it has awarded $200,000 to two health and sanitation projects as part of the Bill Ford Better World Challenge. One $140,000 grant will go toward the installation of 300 SMART toilets—which include lighting, hand washing facilities, and other features—in three villages in the rural district of Kancheepuram in India. Another $60,000 will assist with a number of clean water initiatives in Guayacan, Mexico, including a community center with filtered water and bathrooms and in-home water filtration systems for up to 750 families. The grant will also aid with free Sunday breakfasts and tutoring services at the community center.
  • Toyota has set a sales goal for electrified vehicles, aiming for a significant uptick in hybrid, plug-in hybrid, battery electric, and fuel cell vehicles between 2020 and 2030. The automaker says the promotion of alternative fuels is a major part of addressing environmental concerns, and hopes to have annual sales of more than 5.5 million electrified vehicles by 2030 – including more than 1 million battery electric and fuel cell vehicle sales. Toyota says it is also working to provide an electrified option for its entire lineup, including the luxury Lexus division, by about 2025.

Nissan recently shared one tool it uses in vehicle testing: a miniature car wash. Grit designed to emulate real world dirt and grime is applied to rectangular plates, which are then washed with a spinning brush. The test is designed to ensure that the paint on Nissan models will not be scratched or otherwise compromised by the stresses experienced in a typical car wash.

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