The Chinese EV startup Nio adds a new dimension to their offering. Fans can now wear their drive on their sleeve, thus showing both eco conscience and a sense of style. The clothing has not been made in just any factory but is a cooperation with the fashion designer Hussein Chalayan.
The London-based creative is known for mixing textiles and technology and has put out concepts such as clothes that dissolve or dresses moving on the touch of a remote control. His client list includes Lady Gaga, Kim Kardashian, Victoria Beckham and Rhianna.
And now Nio. For the electric carmaker, Chalayan has sought inspiration in the Nio EP9 sports car. It resulted in the Extreme collection comprised of the Speed and Movement part. Both parts are designed to reflect the way that the movement of the body is expressed through the fabric.
Okay, it is not exactly ingenuous or a very far-fetched abstraction but the collection looks wearable. Just one piece stroke us as odd, at least for an electric carmaker. The piece is called Shell.
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Delivery company DPD will electrify their entire fleet in Hamburg by summer next year, meaning they will operate with zero local emissions in the city centre. DPD will incorporate a mix of electric vans and trucks and smaller light electric vehicles such as scooters and bikes.
These smaller electric vehicles will run operations from a number of “micro depots” says DPD. They estimate that this will replace ten regular rounds of deliveries and retire diesel vehicles.
For now the pilot only regards the inner city of Hamburg, namely the districts of Altstadt, Neustadt, Hafencity, St. Georg and Hammerbrook districts as well as in the Steinwerder and Kleiner Grasbrook areas. Yet DPD Germany CEO Boris Winkelmann is hoping for “valuable insights into the long-term performance of various electric models – especially when it comes to large-scale collection and delivery of parcels for commercial shippers and consignees.”
DPD will use various electric vehicles for the Hamburg trial, the largest being the VW e-Crafter and the Fuso e-Canter by Daimler. Electric scooters of type TRIPL come from the Danish manufacturer EWII. The electric cargo bikes are then made by German Radkutsche.
In terms of deliveries, the vans or truck will deliver parcels to the micro depots in the morning where the cargo bike or TRIPL scooter will pick them up. DPD already began operations with its first micro depot in Hamburg last month.
Yet both in Hamburg and in other cities DPD is hoping for greater support from the municipalities, particular when it comes to finding suitable locations for micro depots. “Parcel services are already indispensable for cities today, and they are becoming increasingly important both for residents and for retailers,” explains Winkelmann. “It is essential for cities and municipalities to play an even greater role in working with us to find constructive solutions for the parcel deliveries of tomorrow.”
In the case of the Hamburg trial, DPD secured support from Zukunft.de. The initiative, which is led by the city of Hamburg, aims to electrify parcel deliveries along the last mile.
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Boeing spin-off Aurora Flight Sciences launches an autonomous lightweight airplane called Odysseus. Thanks to advanced solar cells that deliver 250 watts, the solar plane can fly “practically indefinitely” at high altitudes and will take off for the first time in spring 2019.
Yet, the Odysseus is not actually a plane, at least none to ever carry worldly cargo or passengers. Instead Aurora’s creation is a high-altitude pseudo-satellite (HAPS) and designated by its vast wingspan of 74 metres (243 feet).
Aurora specifies the payload capacity at 55 pounds so the solar plane can carry satellite technology in the stratosphere for months, claims the maker. Its drive delivers 250 watts of continuous power and the company set the maiden flight for spring 2019.
Funded by Boeing and founded by MIT students, Aurora stands on years of expertise. A release states that Odysseus builds on the Daedalus Project that set records in distance and for human-powered flight in 1988. The project was led by Aurora President and CEO John Langford and other MIT colleagues who later founded Aurora.
Yet the Odysseus is anything but a game to them. Instead they have concrete use cases in mind. They revolve around surveillance from above in order to “measure vegetation, ice coverage and flow rates, and even ground moisture” according to Aurora. They mention intelligence as a possible use of their solar plane too.
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Logistics giant FedEx will incorporate a 1,000 electric vans made by Chanje into their fleet. Majority owner FDG announced the news and it looks as if the order requires a new development. FedEx will lease these electric vans through Ryder, a commercial fleet management firm.
The order is worth 100,000 euros to Chanje. The start-up hopes to deliver about 75% of the electric vehicles for FedEx prior to October 2019 with the remaining 259 vans due before June, 20, 2020.
Founded by former Tesla employees, Chanje has released another electric vehicle already. For FedEx however, they will build a new vehicle dubbed V8100, according to information obtained by German Manager Magazin. Details are scarce at this point but we expect the new EV will largely build on the existing Chanje V8070. Introduced in 2017, it was designed with large fleet operators such as logistics companies in mind. The transport capacity is set at 2.8 tonnes, and the vehicle features a 160 km range from a 70 kWh battery. The 148 kW electric motor allows for a top speed of 130 kph.
The cooperation between Ryder and Chanje also goes back to 2017 and has progressed since. The fleet management company recently ordered 500 electric vans for their disposal. So then the 1,000 electric vans for FedEx are another step up for both Ryder and Chanje.
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Enel-owned utility Endesa announces their plan to cast a far reaching network of electric car charging stations across Spain. Their new dedicated venture Endesa X will install more than 8,500 public charge points with another 100,000 at private locations by 2023.
Endesa’s hopes to reach both homes as well as companies and towns alike with this dual strategy for their electric car charging network. The utility that is owned by Italy’s Enel, earmarked 65 million euros to install the public charge stops.
Endesa say they will sett up the first 2,000 of the planned 8,500 EV charging stations in 2019/20 and reckon this will give “over 75% of the Spanish population access to the facilities”. In order to ensure access, Endesa aims to connect Spanish cities with over 35,000 inhabitants, covering 15,000 kilometres worth of main roads and urban areas. Once installed, any EV driver in Spain should find a charge point within a 100 kilometre radius, says the utility.
The second phase of the public station roll-out will see the installation of the remaining 6,500 public access charging points at shopping centres, car parks, hotels, service areas etc. Electricity will come from renewable energy sources, Endesa specifies.
In addition, Endesa hopes to erect about 100,000 EV charging stations at private homes and company car parks from 2019 – 2023. This however is not entirely in their control as it obviously requires the cooperation of private clients. Endesa’s offer to them will include domestic charging at 3.7 kW, 22 kW fast-charging points, 50 kW rapid charging points, and ultra-fast charging points operating at over 150 kW.
A new found business unit, Endesa X will carry out the so-called Company’s Charging Facilities Plan. Endesa X aims to respond to the energy transition and to the “changing needs of more environmentally-aware, sophisticated clients,” according to Endesa. Their new products will cater to cities, homes, industries and mobility.
Josep Trabado is the acting the general manager of Endesa X and Elena Bernárdez manages Endesa X Electric Mobility.
All the electric vehicle charging facilities will be connected to the Enel X global digital platform, which will facilitate interoperability and remote control of the charging points. Endesa owner Enel is being increasingly active in the electric car charging market and have begun setting up networks in various European countries while also working with the high power charging network Ionity reportedly.
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Avevai, a start-up from Singapore is showing the first electric vehicles of their new Iona series at the Guangzhou Auto show in China. They developed the chassis of their electric van and small e-truck together with Daimler and Foton but the real innovation is in the system.
To power their Iona series of light commercial electric vehicles, Avevai has turned to e-Synergy, also of Singapore, for their graphene-infused supercapacitor technology. This energy management system allows for what Avevai calls an “unrivalled range” of 330 km for the Iona Van and 300 km for the Iona electric truck.
Avevai set up their cooperation with e-Synergy long term it appears as they patented their jointly developed Graphene Energy Management System (GEMS) together. They say they can customise it for use in any electric vehicle and plan to market it in 2019. Controlled by a smart algorithm, GEMS allows charging and discharging cycles to run in nanoseconds and Avevai claims up to 85% of energy captured through regenerative braking.
In the real world this means said battery technology can take faster charging and discharging cycles with less damage. Avevai specifies a 200,000 km or five year warranty and say a 22kW AC charging station will fully charge the Iona Truck in two hours, while the electric van takes less than four hours to be fully charged.
Avevai designed their Iona series in Singapore but turned to Stuttgart in Germany to develop a custom chassis. The development at Daimler and Foton, longstanding partners, incorporated all performance and safety related components such as brakes, bearings, drive and control systems, as well as insulation and NVH, to comply with international standards.
The body can be customised for various requirements with short and long wheel-base versions capable of carrying a payload of up to 2,500 kilos and up to 18 cubic metre of cargo. Foton of China will take over production of the electric vehicles for Avevai.
The start-up set the on-sale of their electric vehicle series for February 2019, first in China. Other markets such as Europe and the U.S. will follow from May next year.
Toyota is showing their latest Corolla sedan at the Guangzhou Auto Show after having introduced the Touring Sports version in Paris earlier this year. The limousine features hybrid variants too and Toyota says the Corolla will hit 90 countries and regions in 2019.
Expect the Toyota Corolla sedan two come in two hybrid variants, just like the Corolla Touring Sports. The latter will be the first model utilising the novel dual hybrid strategy.
Sales in the United States and Europe are first and scheduled to start in spring 2019, says Toyota. The new Corolla models will gradually be rolled out in more than 150 countries and regions, including the launch of the new Corolla and Levin in China after mid-2019. The hybrid variants of the Toyota Corolla will hit 90 markets. Only Japan may have to wait a little longer with on sale slated for within 2019.
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Volkswagen say it will take them no more than two years to launch more than 30 new electric cars and plug-in hybrids in China. Moreover, the Group’s Chinese arm is considering to install a public high power charging network together with local partners from 2019.
Volkswagen announced their plans at the Guangzhou Auto Show currently taking place in China. At the media meeting, they also specified to build half of their 30 new energy vehicles locally and to import the remaining 50 percent.
In production numbers, Volkswagen aims to deliver around 400,000 electrified vehicles in 2020 and to increase this figure to 1.5 million by 2025. 2020 is also the year in which the first electric vehicles based on Volkswagen’s MEB platform will come onto the market in China. They will roll off the assembly line at the joint venture plants of FAW-Volkswagen in Foshan and SAIC-Volkswagen in Anting.
As far as infrastructure is concerned, the German carmaker is considering setting up a public fast charging network in China, in partnership with other firms that have yet to be named.
In a more concrete manner, Volkswagen China was able to secure 4 billion euros of investment from the parent company. In 2019 alone the money will fund forays into electric mobility, connectivity, mobility services, research and development capacities, and production – all future technologies VW has mapped out globally before (we reported).
The importance of China for Volkswagen will receive another boost, once Volkswagen China CEO Jochem Heizmann will retire in early 2019. CEO Herbert Diess will take over the Group’s China division from this point on while Stephan Wöllenstein will be the acting CEO in China.
On a global scale, Volkswagen’s Roadmap E strategy lines up 50 electric cars to be launched by 2025 . This will turn VW into a large volume manufacturer of plug-in vehicles throughout the coming decade.
Jaguar is cooperating with the French Chargemap to supply their French customers with a special variant of the Chargemap Pass to provide access to more than 23,000 public charging stations across Europe. They are also working together to create a map detailing the network.
The announcement came at the Paris Motor Show, when the two companies announced their partnership to accompany the launch of the I-Pace – Jaguar’s first electric vehicle. The map will be available on the company website, so that all drivers can use it. Bénédicte Bohbot, Electric Vehicles Manager at Jaguar France, said: “The launch of the I-PACE marks a turning point in Jaguar’s history; we are now focusing more and more on electric motors.”
Chargemap also is cooperating with Hubject, which gives them access to the intercharge network, providing both unified app access to a multitude of charging stations in Europe, as well as a fairly wide network to choose from.
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The cooperation between the electric bus manufacturers BYD and ADL has completed it’s order, as 36 electric buses were delivered to public transport operator RATP Dev in London. The Enviro200 EV electric buses, including infrastructure, were ordered in 2017.
The order has now been completed, with all 36 of the 10.8m buses having been delivered and the charging infrastructure set up at the operators bus depot at Shepard’s Bush. RATP CEO Catherine Guillouard said: “We have been looking forward to the upgrade of this depot, which very tangibly demonstrates our commitment to clean and sustainable travel,” before adding that the company aimed to electrify their entire fleet eventually.
BYD and ADL also cooperated with SSL on the power, data cabling and wiring for the charging infrastructure, which features an automatic charging system for overnight charging.
Another BYD cooperation is also underway, as the company has teamed up with the logistics company Aramex to deliver ten electric T3 transporters to Amman, Jordan.
The Chinese battery cell manufacturers have moved into the offices near the planned battery factory in Erfurt, Germany. They are also accelerating the rest of their schedule according to European boss Matthias Zentgraf.
Early personnel recruitment is set to begin in 2019, with production ideally being moved up to 2020 for CATL. Previously, the production begin was planned for 2022. The set up of the Erfurt factory will take place in four phases. A recycling facility will also be added to the factory in 2025.
In August, Zentgraf had stated that CATL would be using local suppliers for the setup of the factory, both from within Germany as well as abroad in Europe. The company added that this would add to local job creation, as not only the factory would bring in extra personnel power.
The agreement between the German state government Thuringia and the Chinese company was made on the 9th of July this year. CATL has stated their plans to invest about 240 million euros by 2022 in the construction of the battery factory, which is the company’s first outside of China. The planned capacity for the factory will be 14 GWh. A first supply agreement has also already been struck with a multi-billion euro agreement with BMW.
The British startup Charge Cars has presented a series of fully electric versions of the 1960 Ford Mustang, developed in cooperation with the electric truck manufacturer Arrival. 499 units of the classic redesign will be built, going for a price starting at £200,000.
The fully electric Mustang is technically an apt homage to the classic, with a 300 kW electric motor powering the vehicle from 0 to 100 km/h in about three seconds. The battery pack has a 64 kWh capacity and supports 50 kW fast charging. Range is only expected to be around 200 km, despite the 64 kWh battery, likely due to the aerodynamics of the design.
The Charge Electric Mustang is already available for pre-order for a £5,000 deposit, but it won’t be shipped until September 2019.
The Chinese supplier Wanxiang Group is investing about 10 billion dollars to build two factories in Hangzhou – one to produce electric vehicles, and another to build batteries, including a research and development centre.
The battery factory will be built on a 160 hectare area, according to local media reports, and will have an impressive 80 GWh annual capacity, once it is completed.
Wanxiang is also building a smart city in Hangzhou, for an investment price of about 30 billion dollars. It will be named Wanxiang Innovation Energy Fusion City, and will house up to 90,000 people on an 8.4 km² area when it is set to complete in five to seven years.
Tesla is planning to reach a manufacturing rate of 1,000 vehicles per day for the Model 3 by the end of this month. Additionally, the Californians plan to increase the delivery speed for their products.
In the last weeks, Tesla has been holding back with production numbers. An email sent by CEO Elon Musk to employees now sheds some light on the internal planning for the company: By the 28th of November, a Model 3 manufacturing rate of 7,000 units per week is being targeted. The background is that Musk wants all subsystems in the production line from the battery cells to the final assembly stably running to function processing 50 units per hour, which would correspond to 1,000 vehicles per day or 7,000 per week.
In the third quarter of the year, Tesla’s production numbers have grown considerably. Between July and September 2018, more than 80,000 vehicles rolled off the assembly lines, including about 53,000 Model 3.
Meanwhile, Tesla has also extended the ordering period for vehicles to be delivered this year. Whoever orders a Model 3 by the end of November, will also receive it this year, in order to still fully benefit from the US American subsidy programme. In order to reach this goal, Tesla has “bought some trucking companies & secured contracts with major haulers to avoid trucking shortage mistake of last quarter,” according to a tweet by Elon Musk.
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BMW has presented the new version of the 3 series sedan with a plug-in hybrid motor system, which will be available next summer. In the new 330e the so-called XtraBoost system will be used for the first time in a BMW, which temporarily boosts the 185 kW PHEV motor by up to 30 kW.
With a capacity of 12 kWh, the new battery allows for a 50% improved electric range compared to the previous version. That puts the new electric range at 60 km, based on the WLTP system. Consumption and emissions values will sink by “more than 10%” compared to the previous generation.
The new 330e is set up with a 2.0 litre gasoline motor with 135 kW and an electric motor with continuous performance of 50 kW and peak performance of 80 kW. The torque is set at 430 Nm. With this technical setup, the acceleration from 0 to 100 km/h is complete in six seconds. The top speed of the vehicle is set at 230 km/h. When driving in hybrid mode, the vehicle can go up to 110 km/h electrically, while the electric mode has a top speed of 140 km/h. These are 20 and 30 km/h more than the previous version, according to the manufacturer. The electric motor is placed in the 8 gear transmission, while the batteries are mounted under the rear seats.
One of the main innovations in the vehicle is the first use of the XtraBoost system, which is a function, which enables a temporary boost of up to 30 kW additional electric motor power. This is used to provide additional “dynamic performance” for the hybrid vehicle, according to the manufacturer.
Volkswagen will be investing a total of 33 billion euros in e-mobility, autonomous driving, mobility services and digitalisation by 2023. Additionally, the vehicle manufacturer specified the factory setups for both future EV manufacturing facilities in Emden and Hanover.
According to their statement, the company plans to fully convert the factory in Emden to produce MEB platform vehicles, with production slated to started in 2022. This will include both compact cars as well as sedans for multiple brands, specified the VW supervisory board, which issued the decision today. Hanover will be home to the production of the I.D. Buzz vehicle family, as well as some combustion models.
Volkswagen has maneuvered to a position where the upgrades are overdue and needed. For Emden in particular, the vehicle production capacity was supposed to stand at 250,000 vehicles this year, but is looking like it will fall about 20,000 vehicles short. This has also resulted in longer holiday periods for workers and short term projects. In order to put the 9,000 employees and full capacity of the factory back to work, new vehicle models are needed. The hope here is that electric cars will fill this gap. The Passat vehicle family, which is currently being manufactured in Emden, will be moved to the Czech Škoda factory in Kvasiny. For both Emden and Hanover, a ten year employment assurance has been made, which means that employees cannot be fired for operational reasons during the period.
In other long term plans, the VW supervisory board also agreed to invest about 44 billion euros in the future technologies e-mobility, autonomous driving, new mobility services and digitalisation of vehicles and factories by the end of 2023. This would make for about a third of the total costs for the company in the 2019-2023 period, according to Volkswagen. The majority of the money will go to facilities, products and research, with 30 of the 44 billion euros going towards electric mobility projects specifically. CEO Herbert Diess spoke of increasing the speed of innovation in this context.
The company also added the goal of increasing their productivity by 30% by 2025. At the same time, they plan to reduce emissions from the factories by about half. They also plan to bundle their production competencies for “synergy effects from the potential to lower costs or increase performance via scales.” During the press conference where the plans were announced, VW also confirmed that they were checking the possibility of entering mass production of battery cells, with SK Innovation as the potential partner.
No news was added by the spokesperson about the Polo-sized BEV for under €20,000, which has still not been confirmed, solidly relegating the vehicle to the realm of rumours.
The capital of the US state of New Mexico has cancelled an order with BYD for the delivery of electric buses, citing technical problems, which could not be solved even after an inspection. Instead, the state capital will purchase combustion models from a US manufacturer. BYD has denied the technical issues and believes the background for the decision to be politically motivated.
BYD has received their first order from Danish company Anchersen for 27 electric 12-metre buses. The buses are to be used in the Danish capital Copenhagen and are expected to go into regular operation by the end of 2019.
The buses will operate on a north-south axis in the city between Emdrup Torv and Lergravsparken. They will be charged in the Anchersen depot in Avedore Holme. COO Søren Englund stated that the company aims to reach the same degree of reliability with the electric buses as they currently do with diesel buses. He added that the decision to order from BYD was made after an extensive analysis, which showed that the Chinese manufacturers would best fulfil the needs in the Danish capital.
Arriva Danmark had ordered 21 articulated buses from VDL Bus & Coach in September, of the variety Citea SLFA-180 Electric. These will take up operation in Copenhagen by December 2019, and are part of a larger order of 40 electric buses for the Danish capital.
Copenhagen has already announced their intention of only ordering fully electric city buses beginning in 2025. This decision was made alongside eleven other major cities as part of the C40 city network. It was recently also announced that their famous harbour ferries will also be electrified.
The Polish energy company Polska Grupa Energetyczna has issued plans to construct 1,500 charging points for EVs by 2022. The first 50 will be installed before the end of the current year.
PGE is currently already operating EV charging stations in Łódź and Warsaw. In Siedlce the company is running an additional pilot programme designed to test the charging infrastructure of medium-size cities. Here they also plan to test car-sharing programmes. The Polska Grupa Energetyczna is one of the largest national energy companies, and have 40% market ownership of conventional electrical generation for which they own about 30% of sales to end customers. Their current renewable energy production is only 12%, however. The company has been listed at the Warsaw stock exchange since 2009.
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The Swedish company Epiroc has introduced the second generation of their electrified vehicles for underground mining. The vehicles were developed in cooperation with Northvolt and ABB and include a 42-tonne truck, a 14 tonne and an 18-tonne loader, and a series of drills.
The goal for Epiroc is to electrify all of their underground mining vehicles within the next five years. The reduction of diesel usage could save the industry serious money, as currently, up to 40% of the energy used in mines is powering giant ventilation systems to remove toxic emissions.
As the high procurement costs for the electric heavy lifters may still be an issue – they are about double that of traditional vehicles – Epiroc plans to help reduce initial investment costs by renting batteries for the new vehicle palette.
The first generation of the electric specialized mining vehicles was introduced in 2016, but have not contributed much to the company’s bottom line. The second generation, which contains larger and more powerful vehicles, is now hoped to break through to the industry. The marketing is particularly aimed at newer or undeveloped mines, where the expensive ventilation systems have not yet been installed.