Tesla, Daimler, Renault-Nissan, Skoda, Mexcio, Volvo, Mercedes.
The Model 3 unveiled: After much ado, Elon Musk finally took the wraps off the Model 3 in California. The smaller version of the Model S is said to have an EPA rating of 215 miles and will cost (as promised) 35,000 dollars. The base version of the EV will go from 0 to 60 mph in under 6 seconds, while there are versions “that can go much faster.” Autopilot hardware also comes standard, as do supercharging capabilities, even though Musk did not mention whether fast-charging will cost extra. 115,000 units were reserved on March 31st, before the Model 3 had even been unveiled. Production is said to start late 2017, and Musk said that he feels “fairly confident” that deliveries will begin at the end of next year.
youtube.com (Presentation), theverge.com (with video), latimes.com, wired.com, businessinsider.de
Mercedes meets Renault-Nissan: Renault-Nissan and Mercedes producer Daimler plan to expand their partnership, the Handelsblatt reports. The two companies have been working together since 2008, but the new alliance could mean collaboration on electric cars. The carmakers plan to jointly operate a factory in Mexico, and also take additional stakes in each other’s businesses.
Skoda expands: As part of a memorandum of understanding with Chinese joint venture partner SAIC Volkswagen. Skoda plans to expand their model range and technologies, and will invest 2bn euros in research and development in the next five years. The Czech automaker hopes to introduce two new SUV variants and one crossover utility vehicle in China.
Bans in Mexico: Due to smog, Mexico City is limiting private and federal car usage in the city. Cars will be banned one day every week, as well as one Saturday each month. This follows a level 1 smog alert last month.
Volvo priced: The luxury Volvo XC90 Excellence will cost 106,000 dollars in U.S. This is a huge increase from the XC90 at 44,945 dollars, and the T8 Twin-Engine model at 69,095 dollars. The Excellence will be offered only as a plug-in hybrid. A limited number will be made available in the U.S., as it is primarily designed for the Chinese market.
Mercedes moves production: Mercedes anticipates further capacity shifts from their South African Daimler production plants to East London. By the end of the year, the Mercedes-Benz C350e, their second plug-in model, will be produced at the East London plant. Investment specifically for the C350e has not yet been finalized, but officials describe the plant as capable of integrating work on hybrid vehicles.