May 6, 2014 - 08:37 am

Tesla conspiracy, Lexus IS300h review.

Reading tip: According to flyers stuck the windshield of Tesla cars in San Francisco, Tesla Motors is involved in organised crimes and other conspiracies. We guess you could just use it as a list of things Tesla is most likely not doing – or just have a good laugh! (flier) via

Video tip: In the newest edition of Robert Llewelly’s ‘Fully Charged,’ the former test drives the Lexus IS300h. A hybrid vehicle with a bright future ahead, despite a worldwide economic downturn – at least that is what Robert Llewellyn deducts, when looking at early sales numbers of the Toyota Prius.

May 5, 2014 - 09:25 am

Toyota, Ferrari, BMW, Mercedes, European Environment Agency.

Toyota considers new hybrid: Once the technology gets more affordable, the carmaker might offer its new Toyota Aygo as a hybrid. Just not yet. The combustion version will hit the streets this summer.Meanwhile, with every third car sold being a hybrid, the Yaris hybrid has proven to be a success story for Toyota. The same is true for the Auris with 40% and Auris ST estate with 60% of the customers going for hybrid. (in German), (in German)

Ferrari plans new hybrid models: Especially the 458 might be offered as a hybrid version in the near future. But here too, cost is still an issue. Ferrari-Chef Amedeo Felisa says, he wants to wait for further technological development and lower battery prices. (in German)

First BMW i3 delivered in the U.S.: Charles Rabie, a professor at Tulf University in Boston was the lucky first to drive off the lot on Friday. On the other end of the U.S., California buyers are happy to hear that even the BMW i3 with extended range will receive the same 2,500 dollar incentive as the fully electric version. (Boston), (California)

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SiemensElectromobility powered by Siemens: Siemens is presenting its drivetrain solutions for electric and hybrid cars on “Vehicle Show Electromobility” in Bad Neustadt a.d.S on May 10th and 11th. Find Siemens at the fairground of the demo city for electromobility and take a ride with an electric car.

B-Class Electric Drive priced in the UK: As of the first quarter 2015, the Mercedes will be available for 32,000 pounds (54,000 dollars) before rebates. And with the 5,000-pound (8,440 dollars) government grant extended to 2017, the Mercedes B-Class Electric Drive will cost only 1,320 pounds (2,230 dollars) more than the BMW i3.,

Introducing C evolution: BMW’s all-electric maxi scooter is available as of today and is said to combine the qualities of a motorcycle and agility of a scooter. The 15,000-euro price tag (20,800 dollars) puts it in the ‘Tesla category’ among scooters. An investment that pays off. C evolution can save the driver 6,000 euros (8,300 dollars) per 10,000 kilometres driven.

The European Union is happy with how fast carmakers are achieving their climate goals, saying the 2015 target has already been met. Climate organisations, on the other hand, accuse manufacturers of lying about their vehicles’ CO2 emission figures.,

LaFerrari test drive: Rory Caroll describes it as ‘otherwordly,’ as he sits behind the steering wheel of the new super hybrid. Only 499 units will build and sold to selective customers. And despite its 1.4 million dollar price tag, they have already sold out.

May 5, 2014 - 09:23 am

April 2014 EV sales in the U.S.

Some 4,187 electric vehicles were sold in the U.S. in April, two percent more as in April 2013. Moreover, 4,718 plug-in hybrids and 39,430 hybrids left the dealership lots. The Nissan Leaf is once again in the lead, with 2,088 units sold, followed by the Chevy Volt with 1,548 units sold. (April), (Nissan vs Chevy)

May 5, 2014 - 09:21 am

DoE, General Motors, Saroléa, Proterra.

As much as ten million dollars: That is how much the U.S. Department of Energy (DoE) will put into zero emission cargo transport solutions in the United States. With the investment, they are footing half of the states’ and local governments’ bills for these type of projects., (application docs)

New GM production facility: General Motors has kicked-off construction of a new plant for engines and transmissions in Pontiac, Michigan. The “GM Performance and Racing Center (GMPRC)” will also be the birth place of electric motors.,

Saroléa presents the Saroléa SP: The new machine can go from zero to 100 km/h in just 2.8 seconds. It features a battery pack with a yet unknown capacity, as well as a 13o kW motor. The electric motorcycle will soon head to the Isle of Man to battle for the trophy in this year’s TT Zero.

Proterra sets the new record for the most miles traveled by a battery-operated bus in one day, putting some 700 miles behind it in just 24 hours. It was charged up a few times during that time period, using Proterra’s proprietary fast-charging process.

May 5, 2014 - 09:19 am

Volkmar Denner.

Volkmar-Denner“We have to remain realistic. When we predicted a few years ago that by 2020 ten percent of the cars will be electrified, we were the only ones doing so. By now, the whole industry shares this view.”

Bosch-director Volkmar Denner in an interview talking about Bosch’s future plans to get more independent of the automotive industry and about it visions for the Internet of Things. (in German)

May 5, 2014 - 09:16 am

BMW i8, Unusual places to charge, Formula E.

Video tip: He hated getting to it, but he loved driving it! After flying to Los Angeles, Chris Harris got behind the wheel of the BMW i8. He is impressed with how much the production car still resembles the concept.

Click tip: You do not have to charge you EV at home or at a charging station – how about parking your electric motorcycle in a restaurant kitchen for juice? And that is just one of the most unusual place to charge up.

Formula E: He is the first Chinese race driver to test drive a Formula E car. In this video, Ho-Pin Tung describes his experience – just in time for the official opening of the Formula E headquarters in Donington Park on May 15th., (Video)


Apr 30, 2014 - 08:52 am

Geely, Volkswagen, Tesla, Cadillac, BMW, Elon Musk.

Geely plug-in concept: The Volvo owner is looking at electrifying its own models too and presented the Emgrand Cross Concept PHEV in Beijing. The car is destined to hit its domestic market by 2015 and has a said electric range of 31 miles.,

Passat gets a new look: Spy shots of the next generation VW Passat have emerged. The pictures show the Chinese version called Magotan, which is identical to the European version except for the longer wheelbase. Based on VW’s MQB platform, it will almost certainly be offered as plug-in hybrid by 2015.

Better safe than sorry: To minimise any delay caused by last-minute issues for its Gigafactory battery plant, Tesla will move forward its planning considering at least two different states. Tesla is currently assessing sites in Arizona, Nevada, New Mexico and Texas. California is not an option due to timing requirements of regulatory matters. via

A taste of luxury: Cadillac has started a series of test drive events to get people into the new ELR. The ‘ELR Mobile Experience’ is currently travelling through California, stopping at busy districts and festivals in L.A. and the San Francisco Bay Area.

How sexy is the BMW i8? Wondered John Voelcker and colleagues. So they took the Bavarian plug-in hybrid for a spin in L.A. where it “drew crowds” while its wingdoors when opened inspired numerous selfies. Inspiring enough?!

Salary slash: Tesla paid its CEO Elon Musk 69,989 dollars in 2013. Compared to 2012 where he made almost 80 million, this seems to be a rather radical cut. Yet, a thorough look reveals Musk as Tesla’s biggest shareholder, not to speak of his numerous other sources of income and ventures.

Apr 30, 2014 - 08:51 am

ZAP, Jonway Auto.

From China come 25,000 orders of the Sparkee and Urbee EVs by Zap and its subsidiary Jonway. According to the company, the orders are “committed” and will be dealt with throughout the course of this year by a newly set up ‘super dealer company.’

Apr 30, 2014 - 08:48 am

BYD, WiTricity, Vivax, Hayvard.

BYD-TangBYD unveils Tang: The Chinese manufacturer has officially unveiled its latest plug-in SUV in Beijing. The Tang comes as 4WD and is said to drive about 40 miles all electrically. Furthermore, BYD revealed plans to offer a new ‘super-hybrid’ called Ming featuring four in-wheel drives by 2016.,

Wireless charging commercialised: WiTricity is licensing its inductive charging technology to the Japanese TDK Corporation. The licensing agreement will enable TDK to market WiTricity’s wireless charging technology for EVs on a large scale.,

Small secret: The Vivax Assist conversion kit for pedelecs is inserted into the seat post and can provide a boost of up to 200 W. Its battery sits in a saddle bag. The system is so inconspicuous that once a cyclist at the Tour de France was suspected to have used it secretly.

Fuel saving PSV: Hayvard has been commissioned by Fafnir Offshore HF to design and build a hybrid Platform Supply Vessel (PSV) together with Norwegian Electric Systems. Ironically, the boat is supposed to serve around offshore oil platforms in the Arctic while saving 30 to 40% of fuel itself.


Apr 30, 2014 - 08:46 am

Rik Baert, Nick Clegg.

Rik-Baert“The future of the internal combustion engine is leaner, meaner and greener … and here to stay. Affordable, compact, clean and tuned for high-energy fuels, this ICE will continue to be the principal automotive power source for decades to come.”

This is the belief of Prof. Rik Baert, TNO Automotive and Fontys University of Applied Sciences. Let’s see if time will tell differently – soon.

Nick-Clegg“Owning an electric car is no longer a dream or an inconvenience.”

Britain’s Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg yesterday announced the start of the next phase of the Ultra Low Emission Vehicle programme with 500 million pounds (841.2m dollars) to be spent between 2015 and 2020.

Apr 30, 2014 - 08:45 am

BYD, EV West, Navigant Research.

Video tip I: Aptly name “Quality,” BYD published a video on its rigorous testing methods – in a rather stylised manner… via

Video tip II: EV West built the tablet-controlled electric 818 for Factory Five and 33 Machine. Hold on tight, you are in for a ride!

Study tip: Navigant forecasts a growth rate of 23.7 percent for plug-in electric vehicles worldwide and expects to see more than 2.7 million PEVs on American roads by 2023. via

Apr 29, 2014 - 08:28 am

BMW, Mercedes, Rimac, Phoenix Motorcars.

BMW talks future: Only after presenting the i8 to the press, the Bavarian carmaker is already thinking about new models in the i-series like a stretched i3 or a van or even an i3 coupé. The BMW i8 might be turned into a roadster already this summer too. (in German)

B-class ED pricing: With 41,450 dollars, the new electric Mercedes B-class will cost almost exactly the same as the BMW i3 when it comes to selected dealerships in some US states this summer. Nationwide availability is announced for early 2015.

More money for Croatian super car: Rimac, known for its Concept One electric sports car is about to receive another eight million euros (11m dollars) funding from two investors. For the future, the electric car and drivetrain manufacturer is looking at building less expensive cars while it aims at selling a couple of hundred units of its G-12 electric motorcycle already this year.

The ‘real’ experience: BMW i has just started a new online campaign to promote electric driving. As part of it, the company asked 107 people to test drive the i3 while filming their experiences., (campaign)

Phoenix rising from the ashes? It looks like the company from California has survived its 2009 bankruptcy and is back to further develop its electric shuttle bus with 14 seats. If this e-bus will still sit on the same platform as the original concept which was based on a Ford is not yet known.,


Apr 29, 2014 - 08:27 am

Elio Motors three-wheeler.

The Trike strikes again with 15,000 orders taken by Elio Motors even before their three-wheeled fuel-wonder has gone into production. However, reservations can be made from 100 dollars, meaning that enthusiasts will still need to be turned into sincere buyers at some point.

Apr 29, 2014 - 08:24 am

Logos Technologies, Nexeon, ERAU, Sumitomo/Nissan.

Military motorcycle: But make it a hybrid… This is the task Logos Technologies was given by the research branch of the Pentagon. The hybrid motorcycle is supposed to enable soldiers to get close to the enemy lines silently, yet escape with full power and range of the combustion engine if they must.,

New anode facility: The British Nexeon, producer of silicon anode, has finished the construction of its process development and manufacturing facility at its headquarters in Oxfordshire. The factory can produce more than 20 tonnes of product a year and is said to be highly versatile.

Electric flight programme: Students of the Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Florida will work together with Powering Imagination to convert a Diamond HK36 motorglider into an electric plane. It might make its first flight already in mid-2015. via

Second life as solar storage: On the artificial island of Yumeshima, Japan, Nissan and Sumitomo have installed a large scale solar power storage system reusing old EV batteries (we reported). Now, Nissan has issued a video introducing the ‘Hikari-no-mori’ project. via

Apr 29, 2014 - 08:22 am

Mate Rimac.

Mate-Rimac“Electric motors are so much better, so much more suited to power cars and other vehicles that it was a no-brainer.”

Mate Rimac, founder of Rimac Automobili and inventor of the Concept_One, on why it was no question for him that his super car would be electrically powered.


Apr 29, 2014 - 08:21 am

Siemens/BAIC, BMW i8 test drive, Chevy Volt.

Video tip: Siemens and BAIC are to form a joint venture for the development of electric drives (we reported). Here is the official announcement from the Beijing Auto Show.

Test drive BMW i8: On a more professional note is Mark Vaughn’s review of the hybrid super car. He was, however, similarly enthused by what he calls the “world’s fourth-fastest hybrid” and the most affordable one too, when comparing it to the likes of Porsche and Ferrari.

Reading tip: Will the new Chevrolet Volt mark the end of the Opel Ampera as we know it? Darren Moss from Autocar speculates that the Volt’s new drivetrain could also get used in a more European-friendly car from Opel.

– Short Circuit –

Apr 28, 2014 - 08:40 am

Mia Electric, Qoros, Peugeot, Denza, Toyota, Lexus.

Mia Electric revival? Apparently, four parties are interested in taking over the bankrupt French electric car manufacturer. The battery producer E4V as well as NSD2 and the 4H Holding all expressed their interest. Furthermore, a group of German companies bid for Mia Electric as ‘Mia Generation.’ Offers can be handed in until May, 5th at the commercial court of the Poitou-Charentes region, France., (both in French), (in German)

Qoros to become electric: In an exclusive interview with the German Wirtschaftswoche, Qoros CEO Volker Steinwascher announced plans to export the brand to Germany by 2016. Furthermore, Qoros is working on an SUV which could be turned into a hybrid or electric version at a later date. (in German)

Peugeot electric bicycles: Anthony Ingram took his chance at a Peugeot press event in France to take a trip into the world of pedal-powered electric two-wheelers. He found that Peugeots’s AE21 and CE21 offered a very different riding experience, while using similar technology and concluded it is worth to “shop around” before buying a pedelec.

DenzaDenza to remain in China: In an interview with the German daily Die Welt, CEO Arno Röhringer specified the strategy for Daimler’s and BYD’s electric model. The Denza will be launched by September in Shenzhen, Beijing and Shanghai before being rolled out in other mega cities like Guangzhou, Hangzhou and Tianjin. The car will remain in China however, and will not come to Europe as it has been specifically developed for its land of origin. (in German)

Meet the new Prius: Or at least take a look at this rendering by ‘Car Sensor’ that shows how the next generation could look like. The new 2016 model of the hybrid classic is expected to come out next year and will be built on Toyota’s TNGA platform.

Quick spin: Steven J. Ewing had high hopes when trying the Lexus CT 200h F Sport as he thought that the “added dose of sportiness” could only mean more fun. However, after taking the hybrid for a ride, the concept just did not “make a whole lot of sense” to Ewing anymore.

Apr 28, 2014 - 08:37 am

Airbus, Siemens, DeLorean.

Electric by air: Airbus is working on a two-seater electric airplane designed for pilot training or aerobatics. The E-Fan works with two electric motors and can fly for half an hour. Production could begin by 2017. The E-Fan shall serve as a model for a regional hybrid plane with space for up to 90 passengers. However, such an aircraft, which takes off and lands electrically, will take between 15 and 20 years to develop, according to Airbus.,, (video)

Electric by sea: On the River Elbe, Germany, Siemens is testing a diesel hybrid SWASH (Small Waterplane Area Single Hull) boat. The Explorer’s hybrid system is based on the ELFA drive system, originally developed for buses. The electric drive serves either as a motor or a generator. (with video)

Back to the future: Students of Belfast University, Northern Ireland, have gotten their hands on an original DeLorean. The car that starred as a time-machine in the film ‘Back to the Future,’ is about to be electrified by the young team with completion targeted for October of the year 2015.

Apr 28, 2014 - 08:37 am

Kandy Wong.

Kandy-Wong“In order to ensure everything goes well, Tesla will have to overcome three big hurdles: the transmission of electricity from the grid to the charging stations that are owned by different companies, the approval of multiple levels of government officials and the lethargy of the state-owned grid operators.”

Forbes contributor Kandy Wong on the challenges Tesla is facing in China. She concludes that bringing the Model S to the streets is one thing, charging it another.

Apr 28, 2014 - 08:35 am

BMW i8 test driving, Solar powered BMW i3.

Video tip: Stephen Engle is Bloomberg’s correspondent in China where he got his hands on the BMW i8 and took it for a ride through the busy capital of Beijing.

Reading tip: As of mid-May, a Californian couple will power their home and two BMW i3s solely with solar power from their roof and document their private going green initiative. Let the sun shine!

Apr 25, 2014 - 08:35 am

Volvo, Subaru, Toyota, Tesla, Yamaha.

Volvo turns it up: The Swedish carmaker will increase production at its Gothenburg facility from currently 200,000 to 300,000 units a year due to the introduction of the XC90 which will also be offered as plug-in hybrid and fully electric at some point (we reported). Furthermore, Volvo introduced the V60 PHEV as sporty R-design version to be launched in August this year., (production), (R-design)

Subaru might bring back electric: Due to tightening rules for carbon emissions in the USA as of 2018, Subaru is considering to bring back plug-ins. If the models will be fully electric or hybrid has not been specified so far.,

Cash on the hood: Toyota’s RAV4 EV is having a hard time in California to compete with lower priced or better EVs. To meet its sales target of 2,600 units, the Japanese have come up with a special deal. Until 5th May, lease drivers will get incentives of up to 16,500 dollars. Buyers however, only get 2,500 dollars.,

Tesla is hiring workers for a new site in Lathrop, California. The carmaker has been granted building permits to modify a former Chrysler facility it has leased. So far Tesla is not giving any details on what this site will be for but is currently looking for 32 professionals.

Electric Yamahas: Presented in Tokyo as concepts, Yamaha now wants to build its PES1 and PED1. Production is set to start in 2016 but no details on the specifications have yet emerged.,

Apr 25, 2014 - 08:34 am

Electric Bikes Worldwide Report.

There will be 130 million e-bikes and e-scooters in production in 2025 worldwide. This is the prediction of the latest Electric Bikes Worldwide Report (EBWR) which has just been published. via

Apr 25, 2014 - 08:34 am

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Geely/Volvo, Energica Ego, EV West.

Shift in battery business: Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) will sell its li-ion battery manufacturing to Taiwanese Delta Electronics. Instead of focussing on batteries for vehicles, MHI will concentrate its efforts on grid-tied energy storage system (ESS) products.,

Geely and Volvo getting even closer: Apparently, the two companies are discussing to set up a joint research and development centre with a focus on electric drive systems and their manufacture. A timetable has not been set yet.

3D-printed superbike: Most parts of the Energica Ego were 3D printed before they are put together to form a fully functioning electric motorcycle. The Italian-made Ego is said to reach speeds of up to 150 mph. Sales launch is set for 2015 with prices starting from 22,000 euros (30,000 dollars). (with video),

Oldtimer electrification: EV West specialises in electrifying classics. The company offers conversion kits for 16 models, among them the Beetle, Porsche 911, Karmann Ghia or the more recent Mazda MX 5. The kits cost under 7,000 dollars not including the battery.

Apr 25, 2014 - 08:32 am

Mike Michels, Chris Martin, Jens Kratholm.

Mike-Michels“You’re not going to get the volumes and the mainstream acceptance until a vehicle – whatever the technology is – can be the only vehicle in the household.”

Mike Michels, Toyota VP of External Communications, on Toyota’s focus on hybrids and fuel cell vehicles while he does not believe a Tesla or another BEV could serve as the only car in a house.

anonym“It’s more that we believe that that is the ultimate solution transportation future.”

Chris Martin, PR manager for Honda, believes similarly strong in the future of fuel cell technology, especially as it is the closest to what people are used to expect from a car nowadays.

Jens-Kratholm“If we want to change the habits of people to begin driving electric cars, all the cars must be on the road at all times so people see them.”

Jens Kratholm is the man with the most Teslas worldwide (6 Roadsters and 1 Model S) in the most unlikely place, Narvik, close to the arctic circle. He firmly believes that only by example people will be convinced to drive an EV too.

Apr 25, 2014 - 08:30 am

Plug-in electric vehicles, UK charging stations.

Study tip: Another forecast by Navigant Research sees the U.S. keeping its leading position as largest market for light-duty plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs) with sales exceeding 514,000 in 2023.

Video tip: Dominic Tobin from ‘Sunday Times’ drove a range-extended BMW i3 around London and to Bristol to check out the various different public charging spots. Unfortunately not every charging spot was working.

Apr 24, 2014 - 08:27 am

Venucia, VW, Land Rover, Consumer Reports, Experian Automotive.

Venucia e30 ahead of schedule: The Chinese ‘Leaf’ by Dongfeng-Nissan will go on-sale as Venucia e30 in China this September already and not by the end of 2015 as originally announced. The launch follows EV pilot programs in Guangzhou, Xiangyang and Dalian with 300 EVs driving one million kilometres.

VW means business: Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn has specified what he calls “the biggest initiative for e-mobility in China’s automotive history” (we reported). Until 2018, VW will invest 25 billion dollars and create about 20,000 jobs in China.

Range-Rover-Hybrid-LWBHybrid Land Rover for China: Land Rover is presenting its Range Rover Hybrid Long Wheelbase at the Beijing Autoshow. According to the Brits, it will be the first diesel hybrid to be offered in China and can be ordered from May. A 292 hp diesel engine is coupled with a 35 kW electric motor which enables electric driving for one mile at speeds of up to 30 mph.,

Secret shopping for EVs: The American Consumer Reports send 19 secret test shoppers to 85 car dealers in the U.S. to buy an electric car. It turned out that the more a sales person knew about EVs, the more he or she encouraged the secret testers to buy one while poor knowledge even led to outright discouragement. via

EV vs hybrid buyers: A study of Experian Automotive showed that buyers of electric cars were younger and wealthier than those buying hybrids in 2013. Furthermore, EV sales grew by 245% compared to 2012 while hybrid sales only increased by 19%.,,

Apr 24, 2014 - 08:26 am

Tesla opens 100th Supercharger.

Tesla installed its 100th supercharger worldwide in New Jersey, USA, this week. While 86 of all Tesla charging stations can be found in the U.S., slowly but surely Europe becomes connected with six superchargers in Norway, four in Germany, two in the Netherlands and one in both Austria and Switzerland. Check out the community-generated map of Germany to see which Superchargers are coming next., (Germany map)

Apr 24, 2014 - 08:24 am

Hella/Vahle, George Washington University, UQM/KDS, GreenTrans.

Wireless connection: Hella and Vahle officially announced their cooperation to develop inductive charging systems for EVs. The two companies will also address infrastructural and technological challenges like interferences which the wireless energy transfer could have on other on-board electronics.,

Light-weight ultracapacitor: Researchers at the George Washington University combined graphene flakes and carbon nanotubes. Rolled in paper, the mix results in a new ultracapacitor which is said to be light-weight while delivering high-performance at low-costs.,

Commercial vehicle electrification: UQM Technologies Inc. and Kinetics Drive Solutions Inc. are collaborating to offer manufacturers of commercial vehicles a complete system to electrify their vehicles. UQM will deliver its electric motors which will then be combined with KDS’ multi-speed transmissions.,

Taiwanese e-bike system: GreenTrans further developed its central motor system which was presented at Taipei Cycle Show. The motor comes with the company’s own torque sensor as well as battery and can also be used in speed pedelecs.

Apr 24, 2014 - 08:22 am

Dieter Zetsche, Moreno Fioravanti.

Dieter-Zetsche“A question is, when do you realistically see the next-generation batteries. Lithium air, lithium sulfur? No one has the answer to the next generation…it might be late for that kind of investment.”

Dieter Zetsche, Daimler CEO, has no intention to invest in Tesla’s Gigafactory. However, his reason might not be the fear to invest in a technology that could be obsolete by then but rather Daimler’s intent to produce its own cells. The company has just recently acquired two German battery businesses: Li-Tec Battery GmbH and Deutsche ACCUmotive GmbH (we reported).

Moreno-Fioravanti“We would like the Chinese e-bike makers to stop using these polluting batteries and want them to stop the export of e-bikes that have lead-acid batteries to Europe.”

Moreno Fioravanti represented EU industry associations COLIBI/COLIPED at recent talks with the China Bicycle Association (CBA). The aim is to harmonise safety standards for pedelecs and e-bikes on a global scale based on EN 15194.

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06.05.2014 08:03