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Updated: 7 hours 41 min ago

Electric bus takeover in Prague – tender in the making

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 20:05

The capital of the Czech Republic is building on its good experience with electric buses and now wants to electrify entire routes. Therefore, Prague Public Transit Company (DPP) is preparing a tender for 15 electric buses to arrive by 2021.

An initial trial has been successful with documentation being worked on as you read. The test saw electric articulated buses running on Prague’s street, whilst dynamically charging at times on an overhead wire – a method Prague is familiar with due to its existing tram system.

As the electric buses made it through the harsh winter, Prague Public Transit Company (DPP) now wants to electrify the entire route 140 with completion set for 2021 latest. This expansion also requires more overhead wires to be installed. Currently, the contact line in Prosecká Street is about one kilometre long. The approved plan calls for the extension of the overhead line to several other sections of the 140 bus route.

The move has been welcomed by the city with Prague Mayor Adriana Krnáčová stating: “We have chosen the route of gradual electrification of bus transport, where we can use the synergy effects of already built-in power infrastructure for trams. In the future, a large part of backbone bus lines can be electrified this way, thereby greatly reducing the negative impacts of bus traffic on the environment and the city’s inhabitants.”

Prague has been ranked 5th in the world’s list of public transport in 2017 by the consultancy Arcadis that issues an annual sustainable cities index.

Furthermore, the DPP is also preparing for the electrification of another route, line 207 between Ohrada and Staroměstská. Here however, they will use dedicated recharging stations for the electric buses. Also route 140 will be bolstered up with additional charging stations for the articulated electric vehicles.

prague.tv, arcadis.com (sustainable cities index)

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Open Charge Alliance launches latest protocol

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 19:45

The latest version of the Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP) is now available to charging stations manufacturers and operators. Version OCPP 2.0, includes new features regarding security, smart charging and improved transaction handling for large networks.

The Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP) is written and released through the Open Charge Alliance (OCA), an international non-profit advancing open standards for EV charging infrastructure. The ultimate aim is interoperability.

Now the latest version, OCPP 2.0 has added secure firmware updates, security logging and event notification and security profiles for authentication (key management for client-side certificates) and secure communication (TLS).
To relieve the pressure on the grid, OCPP 2.0 has also added Smart Charging functionalities: for topologies with an Energy Management System (EMS), a local controller and for integrated smart charging of the EV, charging station and Charging Station Management System.

During the development and review period of the draft version of OCPP 2.0, the OCA consulted more than 100 members from 27 countries as well as the OCPP user community to gather feedback and user experiences in a public review.

Charging station operators who manage whole networks, welcomed the improved transaction handling. OCPP 2.0 also contains new configurations to monitor a charging station and offers the option to support plug and charge for electric vehicles supporting the ISO 15118 protocol.

openchargealliance.org (protocol), prnewswire.com

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Future Plant in Japan by Benex & Sumitono to use Nissan EVs

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 18:59

Japan Benex and Sumitomo will launch what they call their Future Plant project using rooftop solar panels, Nissan electric vehicles and their batteries to power Japan Benex’s headquarters in Isahaya, Japan.

The thus developed energy system combines renewable energy with stationery storage and electric vehicles. Nissan will provide 10 Nissan e-NV200 electric vans for the project.

Both the EVs and stationery batteries will help stabilize output from the solar power system. The Nissan e-NV200s will also be used by Benex employees, and the EV batteries will eventually be recycled and refabricated as components of the energy storage system.

Japan Benex and Sumitomo Corp. jointly developed the system for use in virtual power plants (VPP), which are expected to be operating in Japan by 2020. A virtual power plant is a smart-grid solution that integrates energy resources using IoT and controls charging to ensure real-time balance between generation and consumption.

greencarcongress.com, nissan-global.com

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Almost half of all Toyota sales in Europe are hybrids

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 18:38

Toyota Motor Europe has presented its Q1 results, which position hybrid vehicles firmly on the map. Almost half of all European Toyota drivers opted for a semi-electric drive, in Western Europe it was the majority of buyers even.

Toyota Motor Europe today reported 2018 first quarter sales of 280,300 Toyota and Lexus vehicles in total. Of those, hybrid electric sales accounted for 125,400 HEV units, plus 18% year-on-year. Hybrid EVs now represent 45% of total TME sales, and reach 55% in Western Europe only.

The numbers look even more promising for Lexus. With an average hybrid mix of 66% of total sales and an impressive 98% in Western Europe, Lexus clearly contributes to TME’s Hybrid success.

The Prius Plug-in Hybrid has found 1,017 buyers in Q1 2018, while the fuel cell Mirai comes in with 29 units sold across Europe.

Among the common hybrids that cannot be plugged, the Toyota C-HR led the way, followed by the Yaris Hybrid, Auris Hybrid and RAV4 Hybrid, all achieving record sales, according to TMW.

newsroom.toyota.eu

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CitKar launches electric Loadster cargo bike that is a car almost

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 18:17

Berlin-based startup CitKar is mixing things up as its presents its Loadster, an electric cargo bike that carries on the amenities of a tiny car. The four-wheeled pedelec got a roof and a load capacity of 300 kilos, making it a serious and clean contender for last mile logistics.

CitKar had presented the Loadster, previously known as Cit-Kar, before but now used the occasion of an logistics conference and festival in Berlin to show its light electric vehicle publicly.

Essentially, the Loadster blends an electric cargo pedelec with functionalities of a mini van. This means, drivers must pedal in order for the electric system built by Brose to add its extra watts. Because of this pedal-assist principle and a top speed of 25 kph, the Loadster classifies as bicycle in Europe, so it does not require a driver’s license and can be driven in parks or on cycle lanes. However, the firm is also working on a speed pedelec version with 40 kph.

CitKar says the Loadster can carry up to 300 kilos and got a box with 422 litres volume. A 1,500 Wh batteries holds energy for a range of up to 200 kilometres. The cargo pedelec weighs 60 kilos including the plastic cover. The pedals are in the middle of the vehicle, leaving the chain uncovered between the legs of the rider, who is in a semi-lying position. A steering wheel replaces the handlebar.

Apart from Brose, CitKar has managed to get Magura and Enviolo on board. The startup wants to assemble their Loadster in Berlin’s belt, that is Brandenburg, but is still looking for more investors. Preorders are open though and Kitcar wants to begin building their cargo pedelec before the year’s end. Prices will start around 7,200 euros, indicating a rather professional target group.

A trial with a logistics company is scheduled to start this summer.

ebike-news.de (in German), loadster.org

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Buick releases its E-inspired models

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 17:24

Buick’s Velite 6 PHEV and the all-electric SUV concept Enspire have made their global debut in Wuzhen, Zhejiang. The electric SUV is said to drive 600 km on a single charge with two electric motors delivering 410 kW but it won’t be Buick’s only EV.

The Buick Velite 6 PHEV also uses two electric motors but combines them with an ICE. Launch is set in China for this year and Buick says it also got an all-electric Velite lined up although that one is to make it to the shelves only at a later date.

The PHEV is said to perform for a combined fuel consumption of 1.4 liters/100 km, with range given at 700 km. The lithium-ion battery pack will be assembled at the SAIC-GM Power Battery Development Center in Shanghai.
For the Velite EV however, Buick will adopt a new-generation battery-electric drive system but not much more is known of the Velite in its all-electric set up so far.

Onto the all-electric Enspire concept which uses Buick’s so-called eMotion propulsion technology with 2 electric drives arranged in front and back for an all-wheel drive. A modular battery design allows the Enspire to travel up to 600 km on a single charge. It supports fast charging and inductive charging.

The GM brand has not announced any on sale date or production period for their concept electric SUV Enspire.

greencarcongress.com, carscoops.com

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BMW thinks different sized battery cells to stay future-safe

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 14:52

BMW is planning to introduce various sizes for its battery cells in order to design upcoming electric and plug-in hybrid models in whichever form they wish. A report by Autonews quotes BMW’s head of R&D, Klaus Fröhlich, detailing the differences.

According to Fröhlich, cell size matters and will depend on the type of car. Electrified SUVs for example ride higher and can thus accommodate for power packs with larger battery cells, whereas more compact models may use smaller modules.

These insight into battery design have come out of BMW’s reenforced battery research efforts, which will only intensify over the coming years. The company has broken ground late last year to build a dedicated ‘Battery Cell Competence Centre‘ close to its Munich HQ.

However, BMW does not want to manufacture cells in-house but deliver the design rather. The new multi-sized lithium ion cells are to become available for what the German carmaker considers the fifth phase of its electrification strategy. The start of that phase is marked with the launch of what is likely to be dubbed the i9 aka the iNext in 2021. The iNext concept may be launched as early as this year though. To date, BMW only offers the  i3 and i8 but they are only the founding members of the family so to speak as there are another twelve electrified models planned by 2025 (we reported).

To power the push to electrify, BMW has entered partnerships with battery innovators and startups such as Solid Power working on solid-state batteries, or Sila Nano in California.

BMW is also acting a s battery supplier for Deutsche Post/ DHL’s Streetscooter electric vans reportedly as they use the same battery that powers the i3.

On the charging side, BMW is leading the FastCharge consortium that includes Porsche, Allego, Phoenix Contact and Siemens. They seek to enable charging with 450 kW within the next three years.

Furthermore, BMW manager Fröhlich has just been asked to join the supervisory board of utility E.On to advise on EV charging infrastructure.

autonews.com

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VW’s Electrify America chooses infrastructure providers

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 14:17

Electrify America, Volkswagen’s outlet to do penance for the diesel fraud, has chosen its “partners in crime” to set up the demanded charging infrastructure. Four companies will help to install more than 2,000 DC charging stations across the States.

Electrify America has turned to ABB, BTC Power, Efacec and Signet for the delivery of charging stations with some able to cater for ultra-fast charging. Power will vary from 50 to 350 kW, that is high power charging with cooled cables. The chargers have been custom-designed for Electrify America.

In total, the partners and Electrify America will spread more than 2,000 chargers across 484 stations in the USA. All charging stations will offer a CHAdeMO (50kW) connector, plus additional dual-handle chargers with CCS1 (50 to 150kW or350 kW) connectors. An L2 AC charger will also be offered at a majority of metro DC fast charging stations to accommodate plug-in hybrids and non-DC-charge capable EVs.

The network will be operated by Electrify America using technology by Greenlots that acts as a “virtual command center”. This will enable VW to build, operate and manage its high-power charging network by providing real-time charger status, utilisation data, dynamic pricing capabilities and predictive analytics to identify future maintenance.

Overall, Electrify America has to invest 2 billion dollars over the next 10 years in EV infrastructure and awareness. The company is currently implementing Cycle 1 of its investment plan, an initial investment of 500 million dollars, that calls for over 2,000 chargers in California and 38 other states.

greencarcongress.com, electrifyamerica.com

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Volocopter presents airtaxi stations for 10,000 people a day

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 13:51

German startup Volocopter presents infrastructure for its electric flying cab service in the making. It consists of so-called Volo-Ports leading to Volo-Hubs, designed to shuttle thousands of passengers through each day. Volocopter wants to launch the first within 10 years.

It is not enough to launch a VTOL these days any longer. If those flying cabs are to integrate into future public transport, there need to be dedicated take-off and landing spots. Volocopter now launched their take on the matter.

Says Florian Reuter, Volocopter CEO: “We are here to develop the entire ecosystem making air taxi services a reality across the world. This includes the physical and digital infrastructure to manage unmanned systems.”

In a concept video, they specify their own air transport systems with Volo-Ports channeling up to a 1,000 passengers per hour, or 10,000 people in a day. Located on rooftops the ports are to form a network for the Volocopters to launch and land from and charge as well, using a battery or fuel cell swap system.

The German company imagines protruding launch pads that connect to a sort of conveyor belt on which the electric air taxis ride to an indoor hangar, the Volo-Hub, for passengers to alight before robots ready the air taxis for their next flight.

Volocopter’s stated aim is to have a mini aircraft take off and land every 30 seconds. Otherwise they will not be able to ensure enough passenger capacity to keep flights at an affordable price level.

The company expects the first full Volocopter air taxi systems with dozens of Volo-Hubs and Volo-Ports to be in place within the next 10 years but has not specified any destinations or city partners so far.

So while the current infrastructure proposal is just a concept, Volocopter has tested its drone-like cab with 18 rotors successfully before. An unmanned test flight took off in Dubai reportedly and the prototype managed to stay in the air for approximately 30 minutes. Volocopter counts Daimler and Intel among its investors that are hoping to electrify urban air transport (we reported).

theverge.com, volocopter.com

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EU agrees rules to make buildings EV ready

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 13:22

The EU Parliament has had its final vote on the energy performance of buildings including the installation of EV charging infrastructure. The rules differ from the EU Commission’s initial proposal as it asks for less charging opportunities.

The revised Energy Performance of Buildings Directive applies to residential buildings with more than ten parking spaces. These new buildings or buildings undergoing major renovations must now be equipped with the dedicated infrastructure (power lines’ ducting) suitable to allow for the subsequent installation of a recharging point for all parking spaces.

The same requirement will apply to (new and major renovation of) non-residential buildings with more than 10 parking spaces, but only for 20% of parking spaces. For such buildings, at least one recharging point will also have to be installed and made available for users.

Furthermore, EU Member States must lay down requirements for the installation of a minimum number of charging points for all non-residential buildings with more than 20 parking spaces, by 1 January 2025.

In general, the Directive requires the countries to simplify the deployment of recharging points in buildings by adapting permitting and approval procedures accordingly.

For the revised directive on Energy Performance of Buildings to become law after the EU Parliament has now given its approval, the Council of Ministers will have to finalise its formal agreement in an upcoming Council meeting in the coming weeks. Once they endorsed the Directive, it will be followed shortly by the publication of the text in the Official Journal of the Union, which will enter into force 20 days after publication. Member States will then have to transpose the new elements of the Directive into national law within 20 months.

europa.euec.europa.eu (charging infrastructure,  paragraph 9)

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Elon Musk sets tougher production targets for Model 3

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 12:52

Despite Tesla encountering production problems since the launch of the Model 3, CEO Elon Musk is not discouraged. On the contrary, in an internal email he wrote, he now aims to increase production, saying the latest stop of the lines only serves those upgrades.

The email has been sent to employees following yesterday’s halt of production in Fremont and at the Gigafactory 1 in Nevada. Musk now told his workers, that Tesla is aiming to more than double production.

The email as obtained by electrek reads in this regard:

“Starting today at Giga and tomorrow at Fremont, we will be stopping for three to five days to do a comprehensive set of upgrades. This should set us up for Model 3 production of 3000 to 4000 per week next month.

Another set of upgrades starting in late May should be enough to unlock production capacity of 6000 Model 3 vehicles per week by the end of June. Please note that all areas of Tesla and our suppliers will be required to demonstrate a Model 3 capacity of ~6000/week by building 850 sets of car parts in 24 hours no later than June 30th.”

The new target is 6,000 Model 3 per week across all production processes and suppliers in order to achieve an actual 5,000 units per week in June – with a margin of error.

Writes Elon Musk: “The reason that the burst-build target rate is 6000 and not 5000 per week in June is that we cannot have a number with no margin for error across thousands of internally and externally produced parts and processes, amplified by a complex global logistics chain. Actual production will move as fast as the least lucky and least well-executed part of the entire Tesla production/supply chain system.”

So basically Tesla is aiming to reach their initial goal with some internal adjustments having been made to be on the safe side. The latest numbers had put the EV maker behind schedule. In Q1, Tesla constructed 9,766 Model 3, with 2,020 rolling off the assembly line in the last week of March, thus missing the initial production goal.

electrek.co

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IONITY opens first HPC station in Germany

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 12:29

The high power charging network IONITY has opened its first location, right on the “Autobahn” A61. It is located at a pit stop operated by Tank & Rast and electric cars using CCS may charge for free throughout the end of May. 

The Brohltal-Ost location in the Rhineland-Palatinate state in Germany is the first of a planned 400 high power charging stations across Europe according to IONITY. The HPC chargers have been delivered by Australian Tritium and each of the six charging columns is capable of charging with 350 kW via CCS.

IONITY opting for Tritium indicates that the network will rely on various suppliers. Their first HPC charging location in Danish Aabenraa for example, relies on the HPC charging system built by Porsche Engineering. Then again, in Norway, IONITY is expected to use high power charging stations from ABB.

electrive.net (in German)

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eRoadArlanda – Swedish road charges EVs while driving

Wed, 04/18/2018 - 12:10

The eRoadArlanda in Sweden is now open and will first allow electric trucks to drive while charging. This is made possible through an innovative rail system, that hooks onto the electric vehicles fully automatically, and cars may soon follow.

The stretch of road is a section of the public 893 road between the Arlanda Cargo Terminal and the Rosersberg logistics areal at the edge of Stockholm. The approximately 2 km long stretch was fitted with a special electric rail, which transfers energy to a moveable arm and on to the EV.

The eRoadArlanda is part of the innovation plan by the Swedish Transport Administration. During the test period, they want to specifically look at the charging behaviour and viability of e-trucks. Involved in the project are also a number of other partners, including: Elways, NCC, PostNord, ABT-bolagen, Vattenfall, DAF, KTH, Kilenkrysset, VTI, E-traction, GCT, KTH, Bilprovningen, Airport City Stockholm, Sigtuna Municipality, Swedavia, Arlanda Stad Holding, TraningPartner, FirstHotel, Frost Produktion, SMM Dulevo and Sandströms Elfirma.

The eRoadArlanda follows a similar principle to Siemens’ eHighways that have been installed in Germany and California for example. The eRaodArlanda though works like an upside-down tram rather than with a cantenary as is the case for Siemens.
For Sweden, this means “the technology as such (compared to overhead charging), can be used for both passenger cars, trucks and buses if you provide them with an eRoad-connector under the vehicle,” informs us Hans Säll from eRoadArlanda. However, at the moment they use only dedicated electric trucks to be charged on the road but potentially electric cars may join the rail as well.

eroadarlanda.com

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E.ON expands e-mobility activity to Norway

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 19:53

The energy company E.ON has decided to expand their international e-mobility business unit to Norway. In the e-mobility showcase country, E.ON will be advertising its mobility business for private and corporate customers and communities in a nation-wide campaign.

The market entry in Norway is being organized by E.ONs e-mobility business unit, which is seated in Copenhagen. In Denmark, the company is running the, according to their statements, largest public charging network for electric vehicles. Last December, this meant a total of 1,300 charging stations.

In Norway, E.On is looking to position themselves as a solution provider for e-mobility in Scandinavia. To do so, the company is particularly aiming at private and public charging systems and concepts, which would be useful for commercial fleet electrification. Furthermore, E.ON is looking to cooperate with car-sharing companies, vehicle manufacturers and leasing companies.

In their native Germany, E.ON will soon be the largest national energy provider, after their take-over of the RWE subsidiary Innogy.

eon.com

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Hamburg port planning to electrify container transport

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 19:22

The Hamburg Port and Logistics company (HHLA) has announced their intentions to electrify the Altenwerder terminal container transport entirely. By 2022, the 100 container transporters in their fleet shall move on power from Li-ion batteries alone.

In order to help increase Hamburg’s air quality, their eponymous shipping port has decided to take some serious steps. As of the next decade, container transporters powered by lithium-ion batteries will be responsible for moving the containers between the ships and the yard. The project is also receiving government support valued at about 8 million euros for the transition.

Hamburg Port and Logistics (HHLA) estimates that it will save around 15,500 tonnes of CO₂ and around 118 tonnes of nitrogen oxide each year by switching to electric transporters. By 2022 the entire fleet will have been electrified, and a 18 charging stations will be installed. There was also mention of using the vehicles as energy storage, which is another reason the government has been so supportive.

“HHLA is implementing an exciting project in Altenwerder that will have three positive effects from the outset: It saves CO₂ and thus helps protect the environment, it reduces nitric oxide emissions, which in turn reduces air pollution, and, to top it all off, it serves as a flexible storage solution therefore further advancing the energy transition”, said Jens Kerstan, Hamburgs minister of environment and energy.

Already, a battery-powered automatic container transporter (automated guided vehicle, or AGV) prototype has been in operation at the CTA since autumn 2016 and was successfully tested including the dedicated charging station. Since then, six of these charging stations that use an automated arm have already been installed at the Altenwerder terminal at Hamburg’s port.

hhla.de, marinelink.com

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Hubject & Daimler enable app-less charging

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 19:03

Daimler and Hubject have successfully completed the pilot test phase for their project Plug&Charge with charging station operator Ebee Smart Technologies. The new Smart EQ is also Daimlers first car that already is capable of using the system.

The charging solution Plug&Charge is the first instance of the international ISO-Standard 15118 coming into use, which allows for automated data exchange between the vehicle and the charging infrastructure, based on digital certificates. This would allow a vehicle to charge without an app or other direct payment method.

“Together with Daimler, we are drawing closer to our vision: simple charging and payment for electric vehicles for everybody. Everywhere.”, said Hubject CEO Christian Hahn.

The ISO 15118 based system works as follows: Once the connection is established between the vehicle and the charger, the authorization data of the driver is exchanged in encrypted form and compared. After successful identifying yourself, the charging process begins automatically, as well as the billing process at regular intervals. “Plug&Charge via ISO 15118 thus enables secure authentication and authorization of a charging process for the first time, also available offline, where all that is required is to plug in the charging cable.”, was further stated by the manufacturers.

The system is apparently ready for serial production, according to its manufacturers, but currently there is only one vehicle on the market that is capable of actually using the technology: The new Smart EQ.

Next to the Hubject group, to which Daimler belongs since 2012, the Berlin-based company also stated that their ISO 15118 system is globally open to all market participants to use.

hubject.com, media.daimler.com

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China drops JV requirements for foreign companies

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 17:40

Now it’s official, the government in Beijing has dropped the requirement for foreign car manufacturers to team up with a local joint venture partner – and sooner than expected. Specifically foreign firms making BEVs and PHEVs may begin selling in China this year.

Until this decision, foreign car manufacturers were forced to join a joint venture with a Chinese company before being allowed to do business on Chinese soil. That will change now.

Even for those vehicles that are not electrified, the JV requirement will expire in 2020 for utility vehicles and 2022 for personal cars, the state commission for national development and reform announced. Those building new energy vehicles however, may enter the market this year potentially.

This decision is of particular interest to Tesla, obviously, who had been attempting to start a factory in Shanghai without taking a JV partner on board, albeit unsuccessfully. While many other manufacturers simply accepted the price of doing business in the world’s largest car market and integrated with a Chinese partner, Tesla’s endurance may pay off in the end.

Only a few days ago did Chinese president Xi Jinping announce changes to the import legislation, at the Boao Forum for Asia.

Already then he said there would be “significant” changes to the policy, but did not elaborate to exact measures. This time it seems that the Chinese government really came through for foreign automotive producers. Import tariffs in China for vehicles currently stand at 25 percent.

reuters.com

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Lexus considering electrification for LS and CT

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 13:18

Lexus has reportedly been considering integrating electric motor systems in to their flagship LS, as soon as with the current generation. Furthermore, the next generation of the Lexus CT 2020 may present some serious electric competition for Tesla.

The report refers to statements made by Lexus European chief Pascal Ruch. He said that the next version of the CT would offer customers “something else”, which would compete with Mercedes A-Class and the BMW 1 series. It is very possible, that the innovation refers to alternative propulsion systems, however specifically there has only been talk of a battery-electric version and a hybrid.

There has been speculation that the new CT would be a sister model to the Toyota Auris on the TNGA platform, and would come into sale as of 2020. This would fit the picture for the Toyota plan to release at least ten purely electric vehicles by the early 2020 years, which includes its subsidiary brands.

Furthermore, the Lexus flagship LS may be electrified in its current generation. According to head engineer Toshio Asahi, the luxury sedans are being analyzed for further options alongside the current hybrid drive system. Possibilities include a plug-in hybrid system, a BEV or a LS variant with a fuel-cell engine. So far, nothing has been decided yet, however.

goauto.com.au (LS), autoexpress.co.uk (CT)

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Tesla interrupts Model 3 production again

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 13:04

Tesla has announced another 3-5 day manufacturing break for the Model 3 assembly line, this time to improve automation. Already in February, Tesla had to resort to similar measures and basically had to stop the lines in Fremont for planned upgrades.

The problem is the same as last time as well; the company is looking to solve bottle-neck situations and general problems. According to a Tesla spokesperson, the pause will be used “to improve automation and systematically address bottlenecks in order to increase production rates.”

According to another report, the employees of the factory also only received very short notice of the break, and will have to take some of their vacation days, or accept unpaid holiday time.

In the first quarter of this year, Tesla constructed 9,766 Model 3, with 2,020 rolling off the assembly line in the last week of March. The initial production goal, has thus been missed, but the manufacturing is starting to ramp up notably. In all of 2017, the company constructed 1,542 Model 3, which is marked by improvement this year.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has also had some interesting words on the subject of automation and production, as he took to Twitter to write that “excessive automation at Tesla was a mistake. To be precise, my mistake. Humans are underrated.” It seems that Teslas futuristic vision was still a little early, or so will the more sceptical carmakers say.

nytimes.com, buzzfeed.com

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Porsche Mission E available for Norway reservations

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 12:28

Porsche has begun accepting reservations from Norway for their first electric serial model, the Mission E, which will be available as of 2019. The company revealed the news via an email to people that had registered their interest beforehand.

The company is taking a reservation fee of about 1,900 euro (20,000 NOK), which is refundable in case the customer later decides to drop their order. The purchase price for the Mission E has not been disclosed yet. However, reports have speculated the price to stand around 75,000 dollars but referred to unconfirmed statements.

By starting their sales in EV wonderland Norway, Porsche is following the footsteps of Audi with their e-tron quattro, Jaguar’s I-Pace, Opel and its Ampera-e and Mercedes with their EQC, who also first started their market entrance in the Scandinavian nation.

The Mission E will be constructed as of next year in Zuffenhausen, Germany. 20,000 units are initially planned for the production start.

A prototype has been spotted testing, or better, resting at a fast food drive through.

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Při nočním tankování nedaleko Stuttgartu jsme narazili na testovací mulu Porsche Mission E. Během náročného testování vyhládne – řidič si zajel pro Big Maca. Díky frontě na McDrivu nemohl ujet. Podívejte se na video a fotky prototypu modelu, který pravděpodobně sesadí Teslu z trůnu.#MissionE #PorscheMissionE

Gepostet von Magazín ProDriver CZ am Montag, 12. März 2018

Meanwhile, Porsche already previewed the follow-up for their debut electric model in Geneva, with the Mission E Cross Turismo. The 4.95 m concept car with four-wheel drive is a mix between station-wagon, sports-car and an SUV.

electrek.co (Norway), insideevs.com (video)

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