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Industry service for electric mobility
Updated: 11 hours 40 min ago

Bollinger Motors EV with bigger battery

Wed, 03/21/2018 - 15:33

Bollinger’s electric sport and utility truck (SUT) or simply off-road EV will get a bigger battery. The U.S. startup revealed as much in their making-of the B1 video and says the 120 kWh pack will last for a min! range of 320 kilometres.

The new battery plan is a deviation from their initial announcement. When Bollinger Motors presented the B1 last year, there was talk of two battery options with 60 and 100 kWh respectively.

Already back then the range of the bigger battery pack was 320 km  (200 miles) but now Bollinger considers that their minimum range. In their making-of video, the startup also specifies the drive as a “dual-motor electric powertrain.” The trucks payload capacity is 5,000 pounds.

Still nothing has been said about pricing or production. Bollinger Motors is allegedly in talks with manufacturers and aims to start production within the next two years. (video),

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Fazua’s hidden e-bike drive receives €6.5 millions

Wed, 03/21/2018 - 15:29

Munich-based Fazua receives 6.5 million euros in funding for its integrated pedelec drive evation. Venture capitalist trust the company to expand their production and circle of clients beyond Bianchi, Cube, Pinarello, and Focus.

Fazua was founded in 2013 to develop an e-bike drive that is light and almost invisible. The evation system integrates the motor inside the bottom bracket. The battery is hidden inside the frame making it only slightly bigger. Overall, the drive weighs in with no more than 1.5 kilos, including a battery for a range of 50 km.

Fazua first made their entry with a running version at the Eurobike 2016. Since, the young startup has convinced bike makers such as Cube, Bianchi, Pinarello and Focus to use their system in some of their lines. Their market is mainly performance pedelecs, where weight and discretion of a drive count.

The company got investors convinced. The latest round of financing sees Fazua collect 8 million dollars, or 6.5m euros in funding. In their statement, they say they will use the funding to drive business growth forward. Additionally, they want to strengthen their in-house product development and will move into bigger premises this Spring.

Hence, Fazua is currently looking for candidates for quality control, production management and electronic development, among other positions.

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Tesla Model 3 production getting up to speed

Wed, 03/21/2018 - 13:09

March is not over yet and Tesla has registered 4,500 new vehicle identification numbers (VINs) for the Model 3. It is an indicator that the lines in Fremont are rolling more smoothly now although a VIN does not mean an EV has actually been made.

In total, there are now 15,885 VINs for the Model 3 out there. Yet again, this is only an indication, an intention if you like. How many cars Tesla is really building is unclear but estimates stand at about 2,000 electric vehicles a week.

Bloomberg’s Model 3 tracker though showed 10,400 Model 3 made as of today and takes not only VIN but also social media and communications with owners into account. Just days ago, Tesla had to deny claims by employees in Fremont pointing to further delays for even the Model S and Model X due to quality problems with parts coming from suppliers.

Tesla though has had times way worse. About ten years ago, they started making the Roadster in that same factory reportedly and had to redefine the term “slow ramp” in order to make good for delays. Back in 2008, Tesla informed very early adopters on the progress, saying they have moved even “more slowly than our planned pace of 1 car per week.”

Meanwhile, Siri has arrived in the Model 3 and now guides owners through the Tesla app. (VINs), (Siri), (Model 3 tracker)

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Hyundai rushes to electrify commercial vehicles

Wed, 03/21/2018 - 12:45

Hyundai wants to speed up the electrification of its commercial vehicle segment. Both the van Porter as well as the small truck Mighty will get an electric option as soon as next year with Hyundai to adapt technology from the Kona EV.

Hyundai could be seen accelerating its advances in plug-in vehicles lately as the Korean corporation earmarked  17.6 bn euros for development over the next five years reportedly. This latest push however, first builds on existing technology and will apply to all commercial vehicles, vans, heavy trucks and buses alike.

Business Korea quotes Mike Ziegler, director of commercial vehicle research and development (R&D) at Hyundai: “The biggest strength of the commercial vehicle division of the Hyundai Motor Group is to generate synergies with the group’s passenger car division. We will expand eco-friendly lineups from the small truck Porter to the big truck Xient.”

Therefore, Hyundai will utilise technology from the new Kona, namely the electric drive. In the Porter van and Mighty truck however, batteries with 256 kWh will be placed. They will give the electric utility vehicles a range of 250 – 300 kilometres, estimates Ziegler, who has worked for Daimler Trucks previously.

Furthermore, Hyundai wants to launch an electric version of its County bus by 2020. By 2022, the heavy truck Xcient will also run with zero emissions, most likely on hydrogen.

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What’s NEXT for BMW?

Wed, 03/21/2018 - 12:20

BMW has taken stock and delivered an outlook on the the near future. Next one up is a preview of the iX3, the Bavarians’ next venture into all-electric driving. On top, expect to see more of the iNEXT this year that shall roam autonomously by 2020.

For Harald Krüger, Chairman of the Board of Management of BMW AG, his Spring speech was all about “future mobility” as he pointed to new models as well as reissues. The updated i8 plug-in hybrid was mentioned, which he counted among the “highly-emotional products”.

Adds the Chairman “Our future is definitely electric.” Apart from all-electric BMW wants to go fully autonomous. A new campus for testing just outside Munich is to open this year. And there will be previews of two new EV which BMW wants to make in Germany. Says Krüger:

“Over the course of the year, we will present a number of pure-electric concept vehicles that will all go into series production, like: The first all-electric BMW – the iX3. Our new technology flagship, the BMW iNEXT, the captivating BMW i Vision Dynamics, which I just announced in Geneva as the BMW i4. We will produce both the iNEXT and the BMW i4 in Germany.”

First to see the iX3 will be visitors of the Beijing Motor Show this April. The concept is scheduled for production in 2020. Krüger also confirmed BMW’s plug-in sales targets and by the end of 2019, BMW hopes to have sold half a million plug-in vehicles.

Dr Nicolas Peter, the board member for Finance supported the above claims. He then pointed to increased R&D efforts. Says Peter: “We will continue to focus our efforts on further development of our electric drive trains and autonomous driving. (Thus) The R&D ratio for 2017 rose to 6.2% and, as previously announced, was therefore above our target range of 5 to 5.5%. Due to the high upfront investments necessary for the second half of the model offensive and new technologies, we expect the ratio for 2018 to be between 6.5 and 7%.”

The journey continues.

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Rally Team M-Sport developing EV based on Ford Fiesta

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 18:25

The English rally Team M-Sport has begun development on an electric rally vehicle based on the Ford Fiesta R5. They plan to complete the vehicle this year and are aiming for one-day events. Technical details have not been revealed.

“We’re always looking for ways to challenge ourselves,” said M-Sport boss Malcolm Wilson in an interview. “And this is the next step in technology in the sport.”

Ford had been looking to enter the Formula E racing scene, and while this may not be a direct step to the league, it will provide them with the technical expertise to move further. Ford Performance global director Mark Rushbroook has stated that there was no urgent plan to start producing electric rally cars. “As we look at our road car cycle plan, there’s definitely a split of internal combustion, hybrid and full electric and we need the same in motorsport.”

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Spanish mail service testing E-Cargo bikes

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 17:46

The Spanish mail service Correos is currently testing three-wheeled cargo bikes from Bikelecing (BKL), which are equipped with 48 V systems by Continental. The cargo Pedelecs will be used for an initial three month period in Madrid, Sevilla, Málaga, Cordoba and Granada. 

An expansion into further regions and vehicles is considered “realistic” by Correos. The tests will mainly focus on functionality, and every-day-use, and has been underway since January. It is expected to simplify delivery in city centres as well as pedestrian areas.

The bikes are equipped with  250 Watt motors and are supposedly capable of carrying around 550 litres of packages and letters. The range is set around 60 km, according to Continental. The bikes weigh a total of 38 kg, which is quite light, particularly when looking at comparative models.

The Spanish mail has been entertaining the idea to employ electric bikes for some time. A year ago, a pilot project involving an electric bike was launched in Sevilla. The current test models, including the continental system, are built upon the experiences made in Sevilla.,

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Wales invests 2 million pounds to extend charging network

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 17:32

The Welsh government has announced their plan to invest 2 million pounds into the expansion of a charging network for electric vehicles in their borders. Currently there are 439 public charging ports available in Wales to service the approximately 2,500 BEVs and PHEVs.

Over the past year, Wales recorded a sales growth of 35% for externally charging vehicles. That marks a significantly larger portion than the rest of the United Kingdom recorded, which was about 27%.

According to Ken Skates, a labour politician and cabinet secretary for Economy and Transport, the network expansion will focus on the main road network of the country. “This investment provides a healthy kick start in supporting the transition from petrol and diesel vehicles.” Currently the cabinet is working diligently with local authorities to realize the plan as quickly and efficiently as possible.

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Daimler delivers first Fuso eCanter to UK customers

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 17:17

Daimler Trucks has now delivered the first fully-electric Fuso eCanter to customers in the United Kingdom. The courier service DPD, the logistics company Wincanton and the bakery supplier Hovis were the first to receive some of the total of 9 trucks for their fleets.

The production for European and American markets is currently taking place at Tramagal in Portugal. After thee market introduction in September 2017, the first eCanter were delivered to companies such as UPS in the USA, Yamato and 7-Eleven in Japan, as well as DHL, DB Schenker, Rhenus and Dachser in Germany.

Beginning of this month, the Berlin logistics company P&H Logistik received three of the electric semi trucks. In the next two years, these will be used for an American delivery service in the region.

With DPD, Wincanton and Hovis, the customer list is steadily growing. DPD is planning to start with the regular use of 2 eCanters in London, while Wincanton PLC wants to implement five of the vehicles into their fleet. Hovis will receive two vehicles for their operations.,

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Sila Nano and BMW working on next-gen batteries

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 16:53

Sila Nanotechnologies, a developer and producer of batteries from California, has announced a partnership with BMW. Together the partners will be working on lithium-ion batteries for the next generation for electric vehicles.

The products developed by Sila Nanotechnologies include a series of silicon-dominant anode materials that are meant to replace conventional graphite electrodes.

“At Sila we deliver the next generation of battery materials, which enable improved energy storage, require no change to battery manufacturing, and scale economically with mass production,” according to Gene Berdichevsky, CEO of Sila Nanotechnologies. “These innovations will introduce a new performance standard for electric vehicles in the early 2020s.”

The developers are convinced that current generation battery chemistry has reached its limits, requiring a greater deal of innovation to provide the needed leap in technology to make BEVs more functional and reliable for global transport.

The US American company was originally started in 2011 by a group of battery engineers from Silicon Valley and a professor for material sciences from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

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Israel Aerospace planning to launch fully electric Airplane

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 16:12

The Israeli aviation company Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) is planning to develop a fully electric airplane with a range of around 900 km. The first prototype is planned to take to the skies in three years.

So far the details regarding the subject are scarce – we do know that the airplane is planned to be the size of a Beechcraft King Air 350, and will have a maximum take-off weight of between 4,350 and 6,800 kg.

It is planned to be used for inter-city stretches. Moshe Medina, IAI vice president and director of the development and technical division, has said that he is convinced of the coming dominance of electric mobility in the air. In order to take advantage of the Next Big Thing in time, IAI has invested heavily into research and development of electric propulsion systems and batteries.

The initial investment phase will be covered by the organization itself. Where production is concerned, the company has stated that it is considering setting up a partnership.

The topic of electric aviation is highly anticipated in Israel. Just last year, the startup Eviation Aircraft showed off their fully electric light aircraft Alice at the Paris Air Show. But it is not only small startups who have set their sights on electric- or hybrid-powered aviation. Airbus is is developing a concept  called CityAirbus. Last October, the aircraft manufacturer finished its first propulsion tests, paving the way for the first flight tests end of this year. Their competitor Boeing is supporting the US startu Zunum Aero to develop a hybrid aircraft, which they plan to bring onto the market by 2022.

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Toyota to conquer Brazil with Flexible Fuel Hybrid

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 14:42

Toyota has special plans for the Brazilian market: A prototype based on the Prius, but using so-called Flexible Fuel Hybrid technology has been introduced. The Hybrid FFV can run on gasoline, as well as alternative fuel sources, such as ethanol.

The new propulsion system was designed with the specific goal in mind to popularize hybrid vehicles in Brazil, as well as to help provide a more sustainable traffic solution without as much ecological damage.

For ethanol based on sugar cane, Brazil is pretty much sitting on the source. This alone provides the vehicle with a good start. For the next step, Toyota is planning to begin the testing phase, where they will collect data by driving the FFV under realistic conditions. Steve St. Angelo, CEO of Toyota in Latin America, is already talking about the cleanest hybrid in the world using ethanol as a fuel source.

Toyota is well known as a pioneer of hybrid technology, as well as a successful manufacturer of the vehicles themselves. Recently, the Japanese firm announced their European strategy as well. Probably the most important conclusion that can be drawn from a varied strategy is the complete rejection of diesel motors in new vehicles.,,

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Tata Motors announced electrification of current models

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 14:28

The Indian car manufacturer Tata Motors announced that they are working on electrifying the majority of their current lineup. Currently, Tata only offers a single fully electric passenger car; the Tigor. Next they plan to release an electric version of the Tiago.

The news was broken during the Geneva Motor Show by Mayank Pareek, who is President of the Passenger Vehicle Business Unit at Tata. According to reports, the company is planning to extend their market share with the new range, as well as focus on electrification, among other measures.

At the Geneva Motor Show, Tata impressed with their EVision concept car, which is a purely electric sedan with a 450 km range, which is expected to be commercially available as of 2020.

The Tigor with an electric motor will be manufactured in the Indian state of Gujarat. The model is mainly known due to an immense order by the state energy company Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), who ordered 10,000 EVs last year. Tata won the bid, shortly after which Mahindra got involved. Afterwards, the Tigor was exclusively produced for the massive order, and was not commercially available for purchase.

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Pininfarina may begin producing EVs soon

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 13:05

Rumors persist that the Italian design firm Pininfarina may begin producing electric vehicles in their own right. An official statement is to be made around the Formula E race in Rome on the 14th of April.

CEO Paulo Pininfarina spoke with visitors in Geneva, where he said that a strategy for producing luxury EVs was in the pipeline, with support from Mahindra. He further garnished the statement reminiscing that his fathers dream was to start an automobile company, as well as his grandfathers. Now he plans to finally make this dream reality.

In September there had already been rumors that Mahindra was planning to start a luxury EV brand, using their subsidiary Pininfarina. Pininfarina was to benefit from Mahindras experience in the Formula E racing league, that much had been suggested at the time. Now it looks like Pininfarina, who had previously only been known as a design brand in the automotive world, may become an entirely new automobile manufacturer.

Most recently Pininfarina and the Hybrid Kinetic Group presented their HK GT Concept at this years Geneva Motor Show, which is their fourth cooperation for an electric concept car, combined with a micro-turbine to extend the range. The newest concept is a Coupé with wing doors and four electric motors.,

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Aston Martins electric brand Lagonda to debut with SUV

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 12:32

Aston Martin recently announced that Lagonda will be a purely electric vehicle brand. Their first model will not be the recently presented Vision concept, which we saw at the Geneva Motor Show, but a SUV, which is set to debut in 2021.

While the Lagonda Vision concept car in Geneva was a definite eye-catcher and presented the centerpiece of Aston Martins presentation, there were also two small scale-models of an SUV and a Coupé.

The SUV will be the first all-electric model by the brand, according to reports. The vehicle will likely at least be partially based on Aston Martins DBX. If the vehicle will be produced in St. Athan in Wales, like its conventionally powered counterpart, is unclear. President and CEO of Aston Martin Andy Palmer did not preclude the option.

The luxury sedan concept, which was presented as fully functional, will only be available as of 2023, however. According to the developers, it was designed to work with solid-state batteries to enable a range of up to 400 miles (approx. 640 km), however the technology is not expected to be market-ready for a few years, which explains the delayed market launch of the vehicle for 5 years, at earliest.

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Airborne charging support is ready for take-off

Tue, 03/20/2018 - 12:09

Meet the Volt Drone, a mobile battery that flies to the rescue of stranded EV drivers in need of a charge. The mobile charger does not carry more than 3 kWh, however, so while drivers can use it to get a little more mileage on their EV, the drone will not provide any major charge boosts. 

Think of it more like an emergency fix, but don’t rely on it in cases of acute and real range anxiety. The 3 kW is estimated to provide an extra 10-20 miles of range, depending on the vehicle and conditions, which may not be entirely enough to reach a proper charging station, but if a driver were to plan ahead, a slight miscalculation could be fixed. Otherwise one may have to order a fleet of the drones to get any real range.

It is also not clear how much of the energy would be burned on route to the stranded vehicle, which may also affect charging capacity. Whether the name has any association or issue with the Chevy Bolt is also not clear.

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Dutch Picnic to expand grocery deliveries to Germany

Mon, 03/19/2018 - 17:09

Picnic, the Dutch startup that delivers groceries with a fleet of only electric cars is about to make business in Germany. Several cities have been selected to start what might turn into a Europe-wide movement.

Picnic has been rather successful from the start when it collected 100 million euros in funding shortly after starting its web-based shopping service in the Netherlands. Now neighbouring Germany is on the list.

Picnic selected a few cities to start with, namely Kaars, Neuss, Meerbusch and Oberkassel (part of Düsseldorf’s district 4), where consumers can order groceries online using the Picnic app. After that, further expansion will take place, starting in North Rhine-Westphalia, which has a population of about 18 million people.

The company’s business model builds on sustainability in so far as that they use local distribution centres. In Germany, these centres are in Viersen and Neuss. From there electric cars pick up individual orders to carry them further into town and to the clients, all with zero emissions.

In the Netherlands, Picnic delivers groceries in about 30 cities and most of them are located in the central-western part of the country.

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Lisbon’s first EV sharing to launch with Citroen

Mon, 03/19/2018 - 16:50

The French are coming to Portugal and carry the electric car sharing service emov as their baggage. 150 C-Zero are to take to the streets of Lisbon this April and shall be free to roam even beyond the capital’s centre.

Citroen says it is the first all-electric car sharing service in Lisbon. True, although DriveNow also operates a fleet in the city but includes also non-electric cars reportedly. In Lisbon, Citroen is to deploy 150 C-Zero, which both residents and tourists will be able to access through their smartphones.

For Citroen’s emov service, it is the second city in Southern Europe after the scheme launched in Madrid in 2016. In the Spanish capital there are now about 500 Citroen C-Zero vehicles and a 160,000 registered emov users.

“In little more than a year, we’ve consolidated the emov service in Madrid,” said Fernando Izquierdo, Chief Executive Officer of emov, “and it’s always been one of our aims to broaden the scope of the project and operate in other domestic and international cities. Right now we’re focusing our efforts on the launch in Lisbon, but we haven’t ruled out the possibility of extending it to another large Spanish city before the end of the year.”

In Madrid, emov will soon deploy its corporate accounts solution. It gives employees of large companies, SMEs and start-ups cost savings of up to 50% compared with conventional car and driver solutions.

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ABB expands Wallbox portfolio to include 52 types

Mon, 03/19/2018 - 16:34

ABB is expanding its portfolio as the Swiss add a range of wallboxes for AC charging at homes and workplaces. The new range includes a total of 52 types and offers charging at 4.6 to 22 kW. It runs on the Open-Charge-Point-Protokoll (OCPP).

Measuring 50 by 25 cm2, the wallbox can be easily installed at homes or offices. ABB says it is “particularly suited to businesses that wish to provide overnight charging facilities for customers, such as those in the hospitality business.”

The wallbox comes with an all-weather enclosure so that it can be installed both indoor or outdoor. The charging stations are available in different versions, offering 4.6 and 11 kW AC charging as well as 22 kW AC 3-phase charging.

Compatible with the Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP), the ABB AC wallbox is future-proof and enabled for authentication and load balancing. ABB provides support with the installation of the charging solution.

Connector types include type 2 socket, type 2 socket with shutter and type 1 and type 2 cable. For locations where wall mounting is difficult, a range of pedestals are available including one charger, two chargers back to back or two chargers in a 90 degree angle. The ABB wallboxes are also available with or without energy meter, load balancing, back office integration and UMTS/3G modem.

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UPS installs 2nd life charging system in London

Mon, 03/19/2018 - 16:24

UPS has launched the ‘Smart Electric Urban Logistics’ (SEUL) initiative in London together with UK Power Networks and Cross River Partnership. Its new technology enables them to recharge an entire fleet of electric vehicles at the same time, thanks to stationery battery units.

For UPS, this set up is necessary in order for them to grow their fleet from 65 to 170 electric delivery vans in London and without upgrading the grid. Curently, the solution uses new batteries but in a next step, these may be replaced with batteries that were first used in UPS vehicles.

While such installations are not new, UPS believes its may be the “first time in the world on this scale.” The energy management comes from UK Power Networks Services that says it combines an “Active Network Management system with battery storage, ensuring the depot’s electricity demand will not exceed the network’s limit and prevent significant investment in network electrical infrastructure.”

Over in Germany, MAN and Hamburg’s public transport provider announced a similar prototype today. Their 2nd life energy storage and charging station is to use batteries from electric buses in order to charge e-buses in return rather than electric vans or small trucks.

The Smart Electric Urban Logistics project in partnership with UPS, UK Power Networks and Cross River Partnership has received funding from the UK’s Office for Low Emission Vehicles through a competition led by Innovate UK.

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