Tesla, Panasonic, Audi, Mercedes, China, Honda, Infiniti.
Tesla and Panasonic announced the details of the Gigafactory deal: Tesla will be responsible for the premises, whereas Panasonic will invest in the equipment required to manufacture battery cells and will occupy one half of the facility to do so. The other half will be used by suppliers to prepare cell production and by Tesla to assemble battery backs. No details have been made public on the sums to be invested.
teslamotors.com, transportevolved.com, green.autoblog.com
Further updates on Tesla were published in the latest letter addressed to Tesla’s shareholders. According to it, Model S production is on track to reach 1,000 cars a month in the fourth quarter and achieve the 35,000 vehicle delivery target set for 2014. In the second quarter, Tesla was able to set a new production record with 8,763 cars, an 16% increase over Q1. In terms of the Gigafactory, ground was broken in Reno, NV, but four other states are also still in the running: Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas. Model X production will commence in Spring 2015.
forbes.com (Reno), greencarreports.com (Q2), files.shareholder.com (Shareholder Letter)
Plug-in orders open: In Europe, the Audi A3 E-tron can now be pre-ordered from 37,900 euros (50,740 dollars). By December, it will be available in 410 stores and Audi promised to install at least one charge station at every dealership. For home charging, the carmaker offers an installation service and ‘Audi Energy’.
Ready to order, too, is the Mercedes S500 plug-in, which is set to arrive at European dealerships in September. Pricing starts at 108,944 euros (146,000 dollars) and includes a six-year warranty on all components of the plug-in hybrid drive. The new S500 is Daimler’s third hybrid S-Class after the S400 Hybrid and S300 Bluetec Hybrid, but the first with a plug.
China to subsidise EV charging: China announced it would bring down energy prices for charging EVs to the level of heavy industry use and also exempt them from basic fees until 2020. Furthermore, the National Development and Reform Commission urged local governments to facilitate the installation of charging infrastructure.
shanghaidaily.com, chinadaily.com.cn, ecns.cn
Another death of an electric car: Honda has now confirmed that it will kill the Fit EV. The production in the States will stop already this autumn, Edmunds reports with reference to a Honda spokesperson. The hybrid Honda Insight will be ceased by the end of this year (we reported).
Electric Infiniti by 2017? While the company has not set a date for the introduction of its electric Infiniti LE, Automotive News said it learned that the e limousine will be ready by 2017 or latest 2018. It will then feature a next-gen battery with a longer range than the usual 90 miles.