Made in Germany

Brands + News


Audi, Lexus, Maruti Suzuki, ElringKlinger, Ford, California.

Audi-Q7-e-TronAudi Q7 e-tron quattro unveiled: Making its world public debut at the Geneva Motor Show, the new plug-in hybrid Audi Q7 e-tron quattro combines a 3.0 TDI diesel and an electric motor delivering a combined system ouput of 373 hp and 700 Nm of torque. Powered by a 17.3 kWh lithium-ion battery pack, the SUV covers up to 56 kilometers (34.8 miles) on electric power alone. The Audi Q7 e-tron quattro will arrive at dealers in Germany in the spring of 2016.,

Lexus city car concept: Ahead of its Geneva debut, pictures of the LF-SA concept by Lexus have been leaked. It looks bold, to say the least, and the LF-SA concept could go into serial production by 2018, then sitting on the Toyota Yaris’ platform. A hybrid variant is thus likely.,

Small plug-in from India: Maruti Suzuki presents the Swift Range Extender concept. The small car comes as a plug-in hybrid combining a three-cylinder petrol engine and a 54-kW electric motor and is said to offer an all-electric range of about 25 kilometres (15 miles).

ElringKlinger to halt e-mobility? The supplier is thinking about terminating a contract for the delivery of electric car components due to continued losses at its e-mobility business. While the car manufacturer facing the end of its supply chain was not named, Stefan Wolf, CEO of ElringKlinger, said “they will just have to see whether they get the stuff somewhere else,” if the situation would not improve.

Ford connects e-bikes: ‘Handle on Mobility’ is the latest project in Ford’s Smart Mobility initiative. The carmaker now presented the e-bike prototypes ‘MoDe:Me’ and ‘MoDe:Pro’, designed to be integrated into urban transport. The e-bikes take inspiration from automotive technologies, while featuring the ‘MoDe:Link’ app. The bikes are further connected to the ‘Info-Cycle’ – an open source research project.,,

California is considering a new bill which would reduce the sales tax on hybrid and electric vehicles to 3.06 percent, down from the current 7.5 percent. If accepted, first by several committees and finally the Assembly later this year, the new legislation would be in effect from 2016 to 2020.,

Number of the Day

Nissan Leaf sales in Japan.

Nissan sold 999 Leafs in Japan this January alone and is en route to pass the 50,000-mark of cumulative sales in its home country this month. Less than 400 sales are missing and the general trend is pointing upwards as the carmaker sold 37 percent more Leafs in 2014 compared to 2011.

Research + Technology

LG Chem, NXP & Freescale, Qualcomm, Hero Electric.

LG-Chem-CellsLG Chem is to “change the future” by pouring considerate resources into research and development of new materials for EV batteries, LG Chem vice chairman and CEO Park Jin-soo announced. He continued saying the company already had technology that would enable electric cars to go for 400 to 500 kilometres and that it would “not take long” for these products to be market-ready.

New industry leader: NXP Semiconductors is to merge with Freescale Semiconductor in a deal worth 11.8 billion dollars. Both companies offer several components for hybrid and electric vehicles. The transaction is expected to close in the second half of 2015. NFX and Freescale will then become the market leader in automotive semiconductors with a combined revenue of more than 10 billion dollars.

Qualcomm enters Formula 1: The company has now been named as official technology partner for the Mercedes AMG Petronas team. According to the press release, the introduction of inductive charging technology is among joint development plans for the future of the racing series.

Hero Electric motorcycle: The Indian manufacturer has developed a prototype electric bike that features a 2000-Watt electric motor and a 48V lead acid battery. It has a maximum speed of 60 kph and a said range of 50 kilometres. A possible launch is at leat 8 to 12 months away.,

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Most clicked link on Tuesday was Norwegian Tesla driver Bjørn Nyland’s CHAdeMO adapter video.

Quotes of the day

Carlos Ghosn, Torsten Müller-Ötvös.

Carlos-Ghosn“If Apple does it, obviously it’s good news for us.”

Says Nissan-Renault CEO Carlos Ghosn, who finds the news on Apple’s iCar nothing but “refreshing” as he believes a company like the IT giant is able to draw a lot of attention to electric cars “very quickly.”

Torsten-Mueller-Oetvoes“Electric power fits very well: It’s powerful, it’s silent, it’s got a lot of torque, but the range is insufficient and the charging time too long. That is unacceptable for Rolls-Royce.”

Rolls-Royce CEO Torsten Müller-Ötvös shatters all hopes for an all-electric Royce but does not generally rule out a plug-in hybrid. However, his company would need to be “forced into that” by legislation allowing only electric driving in city centres, for example.

Fleets + Infrastructure

Copenhagen, Salzburg, USF, UNC Charlotte, Motiv Power Systems.

Underground maintenance electrified: Metro Service, that operates Copenhagen’s subway, already uses five Citroën Berlingo Electrique for servicing the network. Metro now acquired another three Nissan e-NV 200 and has installed its own 50-kW fast charging station in the Danish capital. (in German), (in Danish)

Touring with pedelecs: The Austrian city of Salzburg will open a new cycle track specifically designed for electric bicycles next week. Somewhat counterintuitively called Slow Bike, the trail runs through and around the town and crosses the border to Bavaria. Along the mountainous path, electric cyclists find charging and rental stations for pedelecs as well as information on the surrounding area., (both in German)

Campus charging I: The University of South Florida is to install seven fast charging station in the Tampa Bay area. The first one will go up at the St. Petersburg (USFSP) campus next month and was donated by Nissan and Duke Energy. The charging stations will be open to the public and customers will be charged 30 cents per kilowatt used.

Campus charging II: The University of North Carolina at Charlotte (UNC Charlotte) has been granted 64,000 dollars for two Clean Fuel Advanced Technology Projects. 52,000 dollars will be used to erect 20 charging stations on campus while 12,000 dollars are to fund a battery monitoring pilot programme for low speed electric vehicles.

Electric Ford commercial vans: AmeriPride has placed an order for six Ford F59 with all-electric powertrains by Motiv Power Systems. The walk-in vans provide up to 100 miles of range on a single charge and will be utilized in Fresno, California.

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Short circuit

Mini EVs in China, Detroit Electric.

Reading tip: Mini EVs are pretty big in China, where more than 300,000 of the 100-mile-range vehicles were sold last year alone. Leading manufacturers are the Shifeng Group, which signed responsible for 60,000 sales and Hebei Yogomo Special Vehicle Manufacturing that billed 50,000 sales.

Click tip: Detroit Electric has shown the design of what will become its first flagship store to showcase its SP:01 all-electric sports car. The store features touchscreen displays for customers to configure the EV of their dream (that rings a bell, does it?) and is located next to the facility in Leamington Spa, UK.

Short circuit

Ultimate summer EV.

Nissan´s ‘Ultimate Smart BBQ Vehicle’ is based on the company’s electric van e-NV200 but comes with components which might soon become indispensable. It features an electric BBQ with 1,500W, a so-called Mist Shower for freshening up, an ultrasonic wave Mosquito Barrier System, and a drone dubbed the Flying Selfie Camera. Clearly, someone is setting standards! via