Audi, BMW, Opelgate, Mirrow Provocator.
Audi promises electrification: At its annual general meeting, Audi CEO Rupert Stadler confirmed plans to launch one “electrified” vehicle per year starting in 2018, the year the Q6 e-tron is likely to arrive. Electrified though does not necessarily mean fully electric.
iNext too late? BMW’s is the iNext, the carmaker’s partly autonomous flagship for the future, is set to launch 2021. Even though CEO Harald Krüger described it as “ultimately bring[ing] the next generation of electro-mobility to the road,” shareholders criticised the BMW for lagging behind Tesla as well as Mercedes in terms of model range and innovation.
Opel’s own dieselgate: The GM owned carmaker apparently used so-called defeat devices in the Zafira, causing “the exhaust gas treatment in those car to be severely limited,” German Spiegel reports. In its “defence,” Opel claims it did not use “cheating” software like its rival Volkswagen.
forbes.com, spiegel.de (in German)
Agent Provocator: The Smart rival from Russia is progressing from concept to prototype faster than expected. Mirrow says it will present an electric Provocator already at this year’s Mondial de l’Automobile in Paris. The low-cost and extra compact EV shall eventually also serve commercial uses.
Mirrow Provocator, VeloMetro, City-Mobil2, Porsche.
Small and smart I: From Russia comes the Mirrow Provocator, a very compact city car. Its cubistic design (more or less 2m x 2m x 2m) allows room for four plus luggage with access provided through the rear. While it is a concept at the moment, hybrid and electric drives are being considered.
Small and smart II: Canadian VeloMetro presented a pedelec prototype designed for sharing. The Veemo is an enclosed 120 kg electric tricycle. While users have to pedal, an electric motor assists the rider up to a speed of 32 kph -an ideal velocity in urban traffic and within regulatory limits that allow driving without a licence. Targeted range is 100 km and once the rental system is set up, prices could start at 28 cent/minute.
Autonomous electric bus: Basque Donostia-San Sebastián has been selected as a testing ground of a self-driving electric bus for three months as part of the EU project City-Mobil2. The EV sits twelve passengers and will run at the Gipuzkoa Science and Technology Park until the end of June.
Porsche reveals WEC motor: The 919 Hybrid dominated last season’s WEC. Now, Porsche showed images of the victorious hybrid motor for the first time. The turbo charged four-cylinder and an electric drive at the front axle charged with a Li-ion battery counted for 660 kW power.