GS Yuasa, Hyundai, Battery Chargers, Greenwich.
Same price, but twice the range? In 2020, Japanese battery specialist GS Yuasa wants to start serial production of new li-ion batteries that shall enable compact EVs to double their range. Their price is supposed to stay at the level of today’s battery prices. The cells are to be produced by Lithium Energy Japan, a JV of GS Yuasa and Mitsubishi, and to be offered to OEMs in Japan and Europe.
Hyundai subsidiary to open FC plant: In its new factory in Chungju, South Korean car supplier Hyundai Mobis is about to serial produce components for FCVs. According to the company, the annual output shall reach up to 3,000 powertrain fuel-cell complete (PFC) modules. Production kick-off is scheduled for September. As reported, Hyundai plans to launch a new H2 electric vehicle with 580 km range as early as next year.
More efficient EV battery chargers: In the frame of a 2-year project, U.S. scientists have done research on how to make EV battery chargers more compact and efficient. Their result are two prototypes – one with GaN transistors and the other with SiC transistors. Both consist of a 7.2kW single-phase 240 VAC to 400 VDC power converter.
Autonomous pods around Greenwich: As part of UK’s Gateway project driverless electric pods will be tested at the Greenwich peninsula in London in autumn. After a first public test in April, this project represents now the next trial phase, focussing on first and last mile transportation by connecting transport hubs with business, leisure and residential locations. The trial is one of several automated vehicle tests within the Gateway project, investigating public acceptance of automated vehicles within urban areas.
GM, Google, Greenwich, SolidEnergy.
GM creates electric car division: The manufacturer has formed a dedicated team for electric and self-driving cars to speed up advancement. Doug Parks takes the lead as vice president and will oversee research and development of new electrical and battery systems, as well as software.
Google to expand EV testing: The internet corporation says it will bring its self-driving electric cars to four more U.S. cities. Testing is to start this March. Only Ann Arbor, Michigan, has so far been named as potential location for the Google cars.
Driverless pods in Greenwich: This summer, electric, self-driving pods will begin roaming the roads of the London borough. They will resemble the electric passenger shuttles already in operation at Heathrow Airport, but are currently being adapted for use on public roads.
bbc.com, businesscar.co.uk, ibtimes.co.uk
12m for battery start-up: The MIT spinoff SolidEnergy has raised 12m dollars in a Series B round led by an undisclosed mayor car company from the United States. The firm’s promise is to bring a battery said to double EV range to market by next year.
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Milton Keynes, Greenwich, Gallium Nitride, London, ALABC.
Autonomous and electric: In the UK, five pilot projects with self-driving vehicles launched this Wednesday. In Milton Keynes, three electric pods named “Lutz Pathfinder” connect the main station with the city centre. And tourists visiting Greenwich can now take a seat in driverless electric shuttle buses.
transportevolved.com, theguardian.com, gov.uk, citymetric.com (pictures)
On-board charging: Fiat-Chrysler company FCA US, Delta Products, Transphorm and Virginia Tech together are developing an efficient 6.6kW bidirectional on-board charger for PEVs based on Gallium Nitride power switches. The U.S. Department of Energy supports the project with 3 million dollars.
The Metrocab is now roaming the streets of London as the range-extended electric taxi has just been approved by Transport for London (TfL) to carry paying passengers. Made by British Frazer-Nash Research and Ecotive, the new black cab comes with panoramic glass roof and as a six-seater plus an optional front passenger’s seat. A trial is currently being run in Hackney, East London.
hybridcars.com (with video), taxileaks.de
48V mild hybrids: The Advanced Lead Acid Battery Consortium (ALABC) showcased three hybrid electric concept vehicles resulting from its R&D program that demonstrate the real-world potential of lead-carbon batteries in 48V architectures. Two of the cars were produced in association with major OEMs (Ford and Hyundai/Kia).
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Most clicked link on Wednesday was the report from industry insider Georg Kacher on the upcoming BMW i5/i7.
ACCIONA, Mahindra, Greenwich, Bustech, Toyota Tsusho.
First EV for Dakar Rally: ACCIONA will be the first team ever to compete in the 9,000 km rally in an all-electric car. The 80 kg electric engine has an output of 220 kW and the 140 kWh battery packs allow for a range of up to 350 km, which would be sufficient for most special stages, after which the batteries will be swapped. The rally starts on the 4th of January in Buenos Aires.
Track tech for the street: Mahindra plans to use technology developed for the Formula E in its serial production cars as well. According to Chetan Maini, CEO of Mahindra Reva Electric Vehicles, this could include battery, powertrain and even telematics technology.
Autonomous electric shuttle: Next year, first test projects with self-driving vehicles will hit the road in Bristol, Greenwich, Coventry and Milton Keyes. Greenwich will test an automated all-electric shuttle bus that seats up to ten people, as well as robotic valet parking for driverless cars.
Electric buses for Malaysia: Australian company Bustech has been chosen to develop an electric bus for Malaysia together with the Malaysia Automotive Institute, Swinburne University of Technology and other partners. If successful, the electric bus could be exported to other countries.
Lithium from Argentina: Sales de Jujuy S.A., an Argentine lithium development company, has started lithium production. Stakeholder Toyota Tsusho has acquired the exclusive sales rights for the lithium carbonate and plans to set up a complete lithium supply chain. The material will be export to i.e. Japan.
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Most clicked link on Thursday was “Reuters” reporting on Germany´s national energy efficiency programme, which also includes e-mobility measures such as tax breaks for EVs used as company cars.