Made in Germany


Brands + News


GM, Battery Market, BMW, Volkswagen, Energica Ego.

Opel-AmperaGM killing the Opel Ampera? Because the European twin of the Chevrolet Volt only reports poor sales figures, GM is apparently considering to drop the new 2016 model, according to Automotive News Europe. Because the Chevrolet brand will be withdrawn from Europe by 2016, there will be no new Volt either.,

50 billion dollar energy storage market: According to Lux Research, plug-in vehicles are on course to become the largest market for batteries and might one day outgrow consumer electronics as the currently biggest segment. The former are expected to take a market share of 21 billion dollars by 2020 and further reduce cost through economies of scale., (report, subject to a charge)

BMW to support Formula E: As we reported recently, the collaboration between the German carmaker and the electric racing series is becoming more concrete. The BMW i3 and i8 will be the official vehicles of the electric racing series and thus chauffeur VIPs and serve as safety and medical cars. What has become of the agreement with Rimac (we reported) is not yet clear.

All about the E-Golf: Green Car Congress delivers a full review of Volkswagen’s electrified car for the masses. The review takes into account not only the drivetrain (“an electric delight”) but also the carmakers strategy for large scale production EVs and how they are made.

Super bike tame as a Vespa: Marco della Cava from USA Today had chance to experience riding the electric super bike ‘Energica Ego’. He was pillion of Energica CTO Giampiero Testoni who is particularly proud of the bikes ability to work well at low speeds too.

Number of the Day

Tesla road trip.

A road trip of 5,900 kilometres through eight European countries in a Tesla Model S is the latest adventure of Bjørn Nyland, the Norwegian programmer who also proved that you could drive a Tesla in Norway’s harsh winter conditions. (teaser clip)

Research + Technology

ABB & Volvo, Mahle, University of New South Wales, Mazda.

Volvo-Bus-Plug-in-HybridGlobal e-bus partnership: ABB and Volvo Buses signed an agreement to work together on quick charging for plug-in hybrid and electric buses. Together, they want to set new standards with their system which will first be used in Luxembourg next year. The chargers will automatically connect to the roof of the bus and charge with up to 300 kW.,

More power for range extender: Automotive supplier Mahle will offer its range extender engine in two new power variants. The currently 30 kW will be increased to 40 and 50 kW suitable for vehicles weighing more than 1.6 tonnes. The new engines are said to be still compact and utilise many parts from the original. The stronger versions are currently being tested. (in German)

Record to break: Sunswift, a team of students from the University of New South Wales hopes to break the EV record for the highest average speed over a 500 km (310 miles) ride with their eVe. The current record is 45 mph and Sunswift believes to be faster even without utilising the car’s solar panels.

Back to the future: In 1993, Mazda fitted its legendary Miata with a rotary engine running on hydrogen. While it was not a fuel cell vehicle, the MX 5 actually burned H2. However, fuelling was arduous and the tank made driving anything else than nimble. Points for trying though.

- Feedback -

Most clicked link on Monday was the ‘Short Circuit’ about the futuristic Nimbus micro-bus concept.

Quotes of the day

Chris Host­etter.

Chris-Hostetter“We went through about 12 versions of the fuel cells and three versions of the vehicle.”

Chris Host­etter, Toyota’s head of strategic planning, is looking back at what it took the company to get to today’s FCV set to go on sale by 2015.

Fleets + Infrastructure

Malaysia, Paris, Sky Electrical, Tesla Motors Club.

Malaysians to travel electrically: A private initiative is bearing fruits with the public transport provider of Malakka, Malaysia, having successfully tested an e-bus by BYD. Now, RapidBus plans to lease five buses from BYD and another 15 next year. Furthermore, electric car sharing initiatives are set to pop up in Klang Valley with Renault Zoes while Langkawi will share Twizys.

E-truck for fragrances: Speed Distribution Logistique started a test of Renault’s fully electric Truck D in Paris. In the next two years, the 16-tonne vehicle will collect products at the facility of renown perfumer Guerlain about 200 kilometres from Paris and deliver them smell-free to stores in the French capital.,

Electricians electrified: Sky Electrical from Twickenham has added the Smart Fortwo electric drive in its fleet. The branded Smart ED is now used to carry electricians to their assignments all across London and its surrounding areas.

Truly Tesla: Members of the Tesla Motors Club (TMC) will travel from all over America to attend the annual ‘TMC Connect’ meeting in California. One group (@TeslaRoadTrip) even gathered beforehand to go ‘Supercharging Across America’ together and documented their pilgrimage. via

Service + Suggestions

Driving the Kia Soul EV, “Range annoyance”.

Video tip I: Nigel Abbott had the chance to drive the Kia Soul EV in Korea and delivers a video review from Seoul. He believes that the range of 125 miles Kia claims for its first EV is actually realistic.

Video tip II: What happens when a Leaf battery is utterly drained, wondered Robert Llewellyn and simply tried to run out of power for a new episode of Fully Charged. While others might be thrilled, Llewellyn discovered “range annoyance.”

Short circuit

Mini racers.

A team of ten 5 to 6-year old kids was invited over to Rolls-Royce headquarters to build their own electric race car to compete in the Formula Goblin race by the Greenpower Education Trust. Team March got the price for “Best Bodywork” though the tiny e-racer was obviously realised with the help of grown-up engineers who left their mark (RR).