Plug-in Countryman gears up: Mini presented a near to ready plug-in variant of its SUV. The technology is not new, as it uses the same 68 kW electric drive mounted in the rear as the BMW 225xe Plug-in Hybrid. The battery allows for up to 50 km of pure electric driving. A production-ready version will be presented at the LA Auto Show in November.
autocar.co.uk, greencarcongress.com, bmwgroup.com
Audi’s e-SUV named: The electric SUV planned for 2018 will be called “e-tron,” which had previously been used as an addition for other Audis with a plug. The “e-tron” will be Audi’s first series produced EV. Latter models like a compact car and limousine said to hit the road before 2020, will again bear the previous nomenclature.
Tesla announcement postponed: Tesla CEO Elon Musk had promised us something “unexpected” for Tuesday, but pushed back the mystery revelation by a day, as it “needs refinement.” Meanwhile, job postings for the Gigafactory show that Tesla will also produce Model 3 drive systems there. And following the final takeover of SolarCity, Tesla will extend it partnership with Panasonic to make solar cells and modules at its factory in New York state.
twitter.com, electrek.co (announcement), insideevs.com (drive system), forbes.com (Panasonic)
China regulates cheap EVs: So far, EVs with a maximum speed of less than 100 kph had few rules to follow and were therefore often unsafe and fitted with environmentally unfriendly lead batteries. The Chinese government is now looking to put technical regulations in place that cars have to meet in order to be registered.
New EVs for China: Changan wants to launch an all-electric variant of its popular seven-seater Ounuo in 2017, which will be less expensive than the current top model. New EVs from DearCC, a new SouEast brand, will be even cheaper. They are aimed at young buyers and will be presented in November.
carnewschina.com (Changan), carnewschina.com (DearCC)
Additional EV benefits in California: According to the proposed Electric Vehicle Credit Act, California EV drivers could get up to 250 dollars in charging benefits from their employer without being taxed, if they commute to work in an EV. Any car with a 4 kWh or bigger battery pack, as well as two- and three-wheelers with 2.5 kWh can qualify.