E.On, Clever, Fortum, EnBW, GOFAST, Korea.
Ultra-fast-charging the Nordics: The partnership of E.On and Danish Clever reaps its first fruit, a cooperation with Norwegian pit stop provider XY. 20 of its service stations will be equipped with fast-chargers that deliver 150 kW but can go up to 350 kW if required. But E.On and Clever are not alone in their endeavour. Fortum Charge & Drive announced its plan to open a rapid-charging corridor connecting capitals. Electric cars travelling between Oslo, Stockholm and Helsinki would be able to charge at 150 kW in-between. The first four of such fast-charging stops shall be erected this year.
eon.com (Norway), iwr.de (Fortum)
Fast-charging along the Autobahn: 100 fast-charging stations will be installed by German utility EnBW together with service station operator Tank & Rast. The EV pit stops will offer charging at 50 kW (AC 43 kW) with the option to upgrade to 150 kW. They are multi-chargers that connect to Type 2, CCS and CHAdeMO and will line motorways in Germany’s south and southwest.
enbw.com (in German)
Charging Switzerland faster: The Swiss-wide fast-charging network initiative GOFAST found a new investor in Energie 360°. Gotthard Fastcharge (GOFAST) reportedly wants to install at least 150 EV charging station offering 150 kW and more across Switzerland.
Korea’s first FCV sharing is about to start in the city of Gwangju. 15 Hyundai Tucson Fuel Cell are available to book online and form a fleet with another 27 battery-electric cars. The programme is a government initiative and serves as testbed.
2016 EV Sales in Korea.
PEV sales in Korea rose by 63.9 percent from 2015 to 2016. The hybrid and electric market registered sales of 68,774 green cars in total last year. Korea Automobile Importers & Distributors Association believes this increase to be the highest proportional growth worldwide.
Toyota Mirai, Honda, Lexus, Tesla, Impossible Electric Bike, Korea.
Toyota’s future begins: The Mirai (Japanese for “future”) has now been officially introduced and marks the start of Toyota’s fuel cell era. On-sale is set in Japan already this year at a price of 7,24 million yen (63,000 USD) – before government subsidies. Europe will be next in early 2015, followed by California in summer next year before the Mirai will be made available in more U.S. states by 2016.
forbes.com, bloomberg.com (price), youtube.com (promotional video)
Honda’s future delayed: The Japanese carmaker unveiled its FCV model on home soil. However, instead of the expected production version Honda just showed a modified concept. Consequently, the launch has been pushed back from 2015 to March 2016 in Japan.
Lexus promises passion: Alain Uyttenhoven, VP of Lexus Europe, has confirmed a production version of the LF-LC concept, Auto Express reports. While he did not give any details on timing and drivetrain, the study which was first shown in Detroit in 2012 featured a 500-hp hybrid system.
Tesla discounts: As the new 2015 Model S range is just around the corner, 2014 Model S are to become increasingly cheaper, Consumer Reports quotes a Tesla insider. Discounts will apply to remaining Model S including display cars. The 2015 Tesla will be available with all-wheel drive, new power and range specs, and the so-called “Autopilot” function (we reported).
consumerreports.org via greencarreports.com
Folding e-bike: The ‘Impossible Electric Bike’ is said to weigh only 5 kilos and to fit in a backpack. The Kickstarter crowd seems inclined to believe the engineers’ claim even though the somewhat bizarre design is still missing pedals and a chain. Minor details when making the impossible possible…
Korea is to cut down hybrid subsidies after a recent budget revision. Instead of the originally allocated 40 billion won (36 million USD) only 32.5 billion won (29.5 million USD) will go to buyers of hybrids next year which will help finance 32,500 units. The government is further asked to provide EV infrastructure.
London, Sweden, Korea, A*STAR, PlugShare.
E-buses in London: Optare, the British subsidiary of Ashok Leyland, has delivered four electric buses to the city of London. The low-floor Optare MetroCity buses are funded by Department of Transport’s Green Bus fund and shall prove the feasibility of zero emission transport in the British capital.
More funding needed: The Swedish rebate program for electric vehicles is coming to an end. Only 800 EVs or hybrids are left to be partially funded and the trade group Bil Sweden is asking the government to top up its incentives quickly.
Car sharing in Korea: According The Korea Times, the country’s youth who often studied abroad is missing a car sharing culture in their homeland as not many offers are available yet. However, Green Car, Korea’s largest car sharing service is seeing constant growth since its introduction in Seoul in 2011.
Anonymous EV charging: A*STAR from Singapore has designed and electronic payment system that protects the privacy of EV drivers recharging their electric vehicles at public chargers. It is based on an in-car unit similar to a smartphone or tablet that allows two-way anonymous payments.
Where to charge for free? PlugShare is now showing Nissan EV drivers the way to the next charger taking part in the ‘No Charge to Charge’ programme. A filter within the PlugShare app will list only stations where charging is free for Leaf drivers for two years after purchase.
Toyota FCV, Ferrari, MG, Korea, Mercedes vs. Lexus.
Toyota’s fuel cell vehicle has just been presented revealing some ground-breaking figures. In April 2015, The FCV will first debut in Japan before it goes on sale in the US and Europe a few months later. The price for customers in Japan is set at about 7 million Yen (69,000 dollars). The FCV is said to go as far as 700 kilometres on one tank filling on the Japanese cycle.
Ferrari is going hybrid: The EU requires any carmaker to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by at least 20 percent by 2021 – that also applies to luxury carmakers like Ferrari. Vittorio Dini, responsible for engine technology at Ferrari plans to reach that goal through hybridisation of its V12 models.
Toyota is Korea’s sole supplier of hybrids, or almost as it holds a marketshare of 97.1 percent of all imported hybrids. That is a total of 2,558 vehicles the Japanese manufacturer sold in the Asian country this year. Already in 2012 and 2013, Toyota has been equally successful in South Korea.
Electric MG review: Autocar was allowed to drive MG’s EV concept on the Silverstone circuit. The electric mini car is based on the Roewe E50 and is already being sold in China. Apart from the rather confined space, Autocar was impressed but only sees a future for the mini MG if it is offered notedly cheaper than its competitors VW E-Up and Nissan Leaf.
Premium hybrid competition: Auto Express has compared the Mercedes S300 hybrid with the Lexus LS 600h. While the Lexus beats Mercedes “hands down for performance,” in the end the reviewers got lulled in by the luxury a Mercedes’ S-class has got to offer.