Upgraded: Free rental cars for electric vehicle owners
If you live outside the United States and spring for a Nissan Leaf, the forthcoming mass-production battery electric vehicle, Nissan will cover your car rentals for long-distance travels. This is interesting. The Leaf only covers 100 miles or so on a single charge, so it’s not necessarily practical for road trips. Nissan’s offer bridges that gap. For now, though, it’s not available to customers in the U.S. No details yet on frequency of rental, distances covered, or other limitations.
Upgraded: Canada’s Via Rail
Via, the Canadian national railway, is updating its cars, with the first new-and-improved sleeping cars and dining cars going into service between Toronto and Vancouver. More comfort on long-haul trains is always a plus.
Upgraded: Your ears
Your ears may soon be a part of your security screening. You read that right: Ears are a biologically unique marker, and as such, may be included in your biometric profile for international travel. If researchers at the University of Southampton in the UK convince global governments, you too, may soon be identified at passport control by way of your ears. (via @elliottdotorg)
Upgraded: Burnin’ rubber
Reader Jeff sends in a video of an Airbus A340-600 brake test. It’s not quite riveting at first, but in the second half of the video, overheated brakes and tires start blowing up, catching on fire, and creating general havoc. I’m not sure if the video is comforting or not. On the one hand, there’s a lot of time between the time the time the brakes are hit and the time the flames start spewing out, meaning there’s a lot of time to evacuate. On the other hand, what the hell are these Airbus staffers doing!? The repeated expressions of “Merde!” aren’t exactly the sign of a plan coming together:
(Thanks Jeff! via the Presurfer)