Brands + News

03-30-2017

Mercedes, Skoda, Seat, Nissan, Electra Meccanica, FF.


Mercedes accelerates electric car roll-out: The premium segment is under pressure since diesel’s dirty secret has been aired, emission rules become ever tighter, and Tesla writes record after record and so Daimler reacts. 10 EVs by 2022 is the latest target – that is 3 years earlier than initially planned in Paris. On Wednesday’s annual conference in Berlin, CEO Dieter Zetsche also announced, he would invest 10bn euros in order to expand the electric lineup under the EQ label that shall cover every segment from compact to luxury. Fuel cells were not mentioned though.
bloomberg.com, autonews.com

Skoda envisions e-mobility: There will be five all-electric models based on the MEB platform by 2025, said VW’s Czech subsidiary and also revealed further details on its first concept EV on the occasion. The Skoda Vision E is to go on display in Shanghai on April, 19 but preliminary spec reveal a range of 500 km and level 3 autonomous driving capability of the electric crossover coupe. Market entry is set for 2020 but a plug-in hybrid Superbe will hit the shelves a year earlier already.
autoexpress.co.uk, carscoops.com

Seat is intensifying its electric endeavour as well as the Volkswagen brand plans for three EVs by 2020, Autocar learnt. Starting with the e-Mii with VW e-Up technology in 2019, next in line may be a compact electric car like the Leon with the VW e-Golf system. Lastly, an electric SUV resembling Volkswagen’s T-Roc is most likely.
autocar.co.uk

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New Leaf spy shots: Nissan’s next-gen Leaf has been caught on camera in camouflage but its silhouette points to the IDS concept. The 2018 Leaf will be revealed this September and Nissan plans to launch it before the year’s end.
motorauthority.com, greencarreports.com

Electra Meccanica roadster: Canadian Electra Meccanica vamped up its electric trike and displays the high performing Solo-R at the Vancouver Auto Show, where it also announced an electric roadster. The Tofino is destined for delivery from early 2019 for 50,000 Canadian dollars (about 35,000 euros).
electrek.co, marketwired.com

Faraday’s future remains in limbo at least in Californian Vallejo, where the company now cancelled its plan to build a second facility. Yet, Nevada shall stand – once construction continues.
techcrunch.com


Number of the Day

100,000 EVs in France.


More than 100,000 all-electric vehicles have been registered in France since 2010. While this is indeed a milestone to celebrate, the French are not the first to reach it contrary to what Avere believes. It was Norway instead, where the 100,000 electric car threshold was reached last December reportedly.
avere-france.org (in French)


Research + Technology

Volvo, Bosch, GKN + AVID, University of Delaware.


Battery lab on fire: There has been a blaze at a Volvo battery laboratory in Swedish Gothenburg but the company said production was not affected. The cause of the fire is unknown so far but it is the second incident at the facility, where Volvo assembles batteries for its plug-in hybrids and electric buses.
insideevs.com, autonews.com

Bosch targets entry-level e-bikes: A mid-motor for pedelecs within the 1,300 – 1,500 euro price segment is Bosch latest attempt at leadership in the e-bike market. The ‘Active Line Plus Generation 3’ launched at the Taipei Cycle Show in Taiwan, effectively redefines the entry-level point for models fitted with mid-motors as it targets a price category held by electric bicycles with front hub drives previously. The latter have already seen prices drop as a consequence.
bike-eu.com

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Electric motor partnership: GKN Hybrid Power and AVID Technology agreed to work together on GKN’s EVO axial flux motors. AVID will license the existing motors, and develop EVO technology further to deliver and distribute new variants of the drives.
chargedevs.com, transportmonthly.co.uk, avidtp.com

Self-healing membrane for fuel cells: Researchers from the University of Delaware have developed a membrane for fuel cells that can repair itself using incorporated microcapsules. Their development has its patent pending and could become essential for fuel cell vehicles in the future.
pressetext.com, udel.edu


Quotes of the day

Lars Hohmann, Otmar Bitsche.


Lars-Hohmann“AC charging infrastructure is not profitable.”

Lars Hohmann, responsible for e-mobility at EnBW, has low hopes to make money from slow-charging infrastructure. Still it remains part of the strategy of Baden-Württemberg’s utility, which looks to become an infrastructure company rather than pure energy supplier in the future.
Nora Manthey reporting from Clean Energy Wire media tour

Otmar-Bitsche“By mid of the next decade one quarter of our cars will be electric.”

Otmar Bitsche, Director E-Mobility at Porsche, on the future of the carmaker. The company is currently restructuring its Zuffenhausen headquarter to accommodate for the production of the Mission E, the first dedicated electric Porsche due by 2020.
Clean Energy Wire media tour, #CLEWontour


Fleets + Infrastructure

Uber, Picnic, PostNL, JuiceNet, BMW.


Uber triples electric fleet in London: The car hailing service is to add another 100 Nissan Leaf to its existing fleet of 50 electric cabs in the British capital. Uber, that usually acts as digital agent for private drivers, said so far the climate-friendly taxis had been requested over 35,000 times. To keep them going, the company also plans to set up a network of fast-charging stations as a lack of infrastructure is what keeps most people from buying electric cars, according to a study by the Energy Saving Trust.
cityam.com, engadget.com

Now it is clear what the 100m euros the grocery webstore Picnic received recently will be used for: the company plans to buy 2,000 electric vehicles, build 5 new warehouses and 70 distribution centres as well as employ 2,000 new employees this year alone in the Netherlands. Until now, Picnic used the ‘E-Worker’ van from French firm Mega, now rebranded Goupil, but the model has been discontinued. Plus, its 110 km range is not sufficient for rural areas so it may well be Picnic will shop for its new electric carriers elsewhere.
cleantechnica.com, logistiek.nl (in Dutch)

The Dutch mail service PostNL follows Picnic albeit unknowingly in its electrification attempts by adding zero emission delivery vans to its fleet through Voltia. After a successful pilot, PostNL is now employing an electric Citroen Jumper and two Nissan eNV200 Maxis to achieve its goal of decarbonising its entire operation eventually.
driveev.net

Smart EV charging: AeroVironment and eMotorWerks partnered up to integrate eMotorWerks’ JuiceNet smart-grid platform into AeroVironment’s line of consumer and OEM EV charging solutions. The aim is to provide increased charging capabilities to customers and electric demand load aggregation for utilities.
insideevs.com, greencarcongress.com

BMW Australia has opened 40 EV charging bays at 10 selected Westfield malls in Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne. Use of the stations is free of charge and they can be located via the ChargePoint app.
practicalmotoring.com.au


Service + Suggestions

London, Paris, Tencent, Tesla.


Reading tip I: The Mayors of both London and Paris have taken off the gloves in their fight against air pollution and want to get the public on their side. Before the year’s end, real-world emissions of cars shall be measured for citizens to check online. Other cities part of the C40 climate leadership group like Madrid, Mexico City, Milan, Moscow, Oslo, Seoul, and Tokyo may follow suit.
autocar.co.uk, businessgreen.com

Reading tip II: What is truly behind Tencent’s investment in Tesla, wonders Jay Somaney and comes up with a rather intersting answer – what if it is to strike a deal between the EV maker and the ride-sharing giant Didi Chuxing Tencent holds shares off? Masses off Model 3 could soon serve as cabs – maybe.
forbes.com


Short circuit

Curling with cars.


In icy Russia curling fans have put a new spin on their game as they used tiny Oka cars instead of stones. It is unlikely the new sport will sweep away the wider public with excitement but it may offer a fun chance to put ICEs on the back burner, esp. in the Nordics.
carscoops.com