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Updated: 12 hours 26 min ago

Wood fuelled Ford Mondeo car

Tue, 06/05/2018 - 20:14

Forget about gas guzzlers in the common sense. Artist Benedetto Bufalino has found a way hotter use. He converted an old Ford Mondeo into a fully functional pizza oven – all wood fired and stone baked of course.

Benedetto Bufalino is a French artist who plays with everyday objects by altering their original function. He has already turned a sedan into a jacuzzi and also reused a police car as a chicken coop.

His latest coup is his take on a gas guzzler, a Ford Mondeo in this case. He retrofitted the ICE with a fully-functional pizza oven heated with wood and nothing else.

Bufalino had to construct an inner layer of bricks after removing the car’s interior to sustain the high heat needed to bake a pizza properly. The Ford Mondeo now burns nothing but wood and exhaust only deliciousness.

designboom.com (making of)

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Ansmann launches multi-use e-bike drives

Tue, 06/05/2018 - 19:45

Ansmann will present various solutions for electric bikes at this year’s Eurobike in July. Their focus is on hub motors with no less than six novel variants. Moreover, Ansmann integrated an automatic gearshift developed by Schaeffler into its drive system.

Ansmann is a veteran when it comes to electric bikes, specifically those using hub motors. For this year’s Europbike, the supplier developed an array of solutions with various motors for all sorts of electric wheelers, including wheelchairs. Also batteries will come in a range of options.

Hub motors have always had the advantage over central drives that they can be retrofitted to almost any bike and are mostly compact. It is not different with the solutions by Ansmann but their lineup is very varied. With the addition of 6 new hub motors, they now offer no less than 9 nine different rear and front engines of different performance classes.

Moreover, Ansmann drives may now shift automatically with the FAG-VELOMATIC automatic gearshift developed by Schaeffler Technologies. In addition to geared motors, Ansmann also offers designs for direct drives able to recuperate energy. The most powerful variants are also suitable for electric trikes or cargo bikes and even scooters. Special drives with rubber coating also allow use as an impeller, so that even wheelchairs or hospital beds can be equipped with it.

greencarcongress.com

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Electric motorbike from India claims 500 km range

Tue, 06/05/2018 - 18:22

Indian company Mankame is working on an electric motorcycle with a spec that appears dreamy almost. Their EP-1 got a range of 500 km on paper, while its 40 kW motor manages a top speed of 250 kph. Their base price is 8,500 euros for a less powerful version but even the top trim is reasonably priced.

The young company from India wants to hit the country’s huge two-wheeler market with a bang apparently. Their motorcycle moves along the sporty spectrum and aims for the top of its league when it comes to performance.

The range of 500 kilometres (300 miles) proves particularly eyecatching and Mankame says it is all in a high-energy density battery made by Samsung. It is liquid cooled and the startup says the secret lies in their custom-programmed BMS. The whole battery weighs about 80 kilo, almost half of the entire motorcycle mass of 180 kg. To put this into perspective, Zero Motorcycle’s touring bike offers a range of 260 km and carries an extra “charge tank” reportedly.

However, Mankame bases their data on computer simulations so far rather than real world riding so it remains to be seen what the EP-1 will be able to do. Even in simulations, the 500 km range is only reached at low speeds around 80 kph, althogh that is good enough for driving on country roads for example.

For Mankame, also the electric motor is pretty impressive, again on paper for now, as it boasts 40 kW and a top speed of 250 kph in the top trim. Overall, the startup is working on three options of their EP-1.

Option 1 will cost 8,500 dollars and sport a 16 kW AC induction motor and a 12.16 kWh battery pack, delivering up to 320 km of range with an average speed of 70 kph and top speed capped at 120 kph.

For $10,500 the EP-1 comes with a 20 kW brushless DC motor and a 14.97 kWh battery. Range then increases to 400 km with a top speed of 180 kph.

Then there is the top trim with the 18.4 kWh battery and 40 kW permanent magnet synchronous motor, making for that spec of dreams above that would be nice to have – eventually.

For now Mankame is looking to start a crowdfunding campaign in July and hopes to be able to deliver their electric motorcycle EP-1 around 2022.

newatlas.com, mankamemotors.com

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Battery maker Akasol aiming for growth through IPO

Tue, 06/05/2018 - 17:44

German battery maker Akasol is preparing for a stock market listing in Frankfurt likely in June. Their move is to raise money to invest in new capacity so Akasol may benefit from an expected surge in demand from EV makers.

Akasol wants to increase its production and R&D capacities in both Europe and the US and therefore aims to sell new shares worth about 100-125 million euros in a deal valuing it at about 400-500 million euros, insiders claim.

Akasol declined to comment on the valuation and timing of the deal. Still managing director Sven Schulz told Reuters the proceeds from the initial public offering would be used to double production facilities at its German site Langen by 2020, set up a greenfield factory in the U.S. and build a research and development capacity near its Darmstadt headquarters.

reuters.com

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K Group to install EV charging at stores in Finland

Tue, 06/05/2018 - 17:27

Finnish K Group wants to install a network of EV charging stations at its convenience stores across Finland. Labelled K Charge, 70 stations are to form a network of 400 charge points being installed throughout 2019 in support of the nation’s EV effort.

Retailer K Group that is part of Kesko says this network will make them one of Finland’s larger EV charging providers and increase the nation’s fast-charging network by 50 percent. The company supports the Finnish Government’s target to increase the number of electric cars to 250,000 by 2030 and to build 2,000 public charging points by 2020. By the end of 2019, K Group’s charging network will alone constitute a fifth of this target, according to the press release.

Of the 400 charge points in the K Charge network, about 300 will feature 22 kW with another 100 faster chargers at 50 kW. The stations will be added to K Store, the providers chain of convenience stores, namely K-Citymarket, K-Supermarket and K-Rauta. They can be found across Finland.

Says Mikko Helander, President and CEO of Kesko and K Group: “We have the most comprehensive store network in Finland, which reaches almost everyone in the country every week, and as the market leader in the car trade, we already have extensive experience of mobility services.”

Therefore, K Group will also initiate projects for new mobility services starting with a car sharing trial that will be launched simultaneously in Helsinki, Espoo, Turku, Tampere, Oulu, Jyväskylä and Lahti. They found a partner in 24Rent but the cars won’t be electric for now.

K Group also uses and more so produces solar power in Finland and wants to power as many of the charging points as possible with solar panels on K-stores’ roofs. All charging points are initially free-of-charge for customers and are built in cooperation with Onninen, which is part of K Group, and Plugit Finland Oy.

kesko.fi (PI)

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BVG orders 30 electric buses for Berlin

Tue, 06/05/2018 - 16:58

Following a lengthy tender process, Berlin transport provider BVG has made its decision. The board approved the acquisition of 30 electric buses that are to arrive next year. Details on the manufacturer have not been disclosed but Daimler is a good guess although Solaris may be an option too.

When the tender to procure electric buses to serve in the German capital was first released, it hit a few hurdles along the way.  Initially there were not enough participants, so BVG then extended the bidding period and apparently have found a suitable bidder.

Whilst there had been talk of turning to suppliers from Asia as the BVG went on an “info trip” there, it now looks as if Mercedes will deliver the electric buses. They have yet to confirm this but BVG placed a large order for the regular Citaro – a model Daimler is about to offer as electric variant from September as well (we reported).

Another contender could be Solaris. BVG has been running a trial with four electric buses from the Polish maker since 2015 (we reported). Moreover, the BVG formed a buying community with Hamburg Hochbahn to increase their bargaining power with larger order volumes (we reported). Hamburg Hochbahn recently opted to procure electric buses from both Daimler and Solaris.

morgenpost.de (in German)

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Webasto buying AeroVironment EV unit for $35M

Tue, 06/05/2018 - 16:32

Webasto is acquiring the electric car charging and testing business of AeroVironment, grouped under the Efficient Energy Systems (EES) division. The acquisition will cost the German supplier 35 million dollars and is still subject to approval.

For Webasto, this is part of their strategy to strengthen their e-mobility efforts and in this case they want to keep all existing EES employees.

Says Holger Engelmann, chairman of the management board, Webasto SE: “This strategic acquisition accelerates the global development of our charging business. Combining EES’ fundamental know-how in electric vehicle technology with our position as a global systems partner to almost all OEMs emphasizes the long-term strategic development of the Webasto Group.”

The acquisition of AeroVironment’s EES business segment contributes to Webasto’s existing core business areas whilst also putting them on the map for battery systems and plug-in electric vehicle charging solutions.

This latest deal is part of a wider startegy of Webasto. They recently joint Samsung SDI for the development and distribution of a battery module. Their cooperation aims to offer customised battery systems to manufacturers of commercial vehicles (we reported). Overall Webasto wants to invest 600,000 million euros over the next three years in order to expand their electric mobility portfolio reportedly.

greencarcongress.com, webasto-group.com

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Swiss startup converts VW van with Kreisel battery

Tue, 06/05/2018 - 15:28

Engineers from Swiss Durot Electric have taken on a commission to convert a VW T6 van to all-electric power. The e-mobility specialists turned to Kreisel Electric for the power pack good for 400 km and also fitted the van with an all-electric AWD.

Durot Electric is an engineering firm based in Swiss St. Gallen that specialises in electric transport solutions. Their latest work was a commission to convert a Volkswagen T6 into an all-electric van.

The completed transporter has been designed for range and consequently usability. A 200 kW strong system is powered by a 86 kWh Kreisel Battery Pack from Austria’s Kreisel Electric that was chosen due to its integrated thermal management. Moreover, it allows the van to drive for 400 kilometres electrically and can be charged via CCS. The battery sits in the floor of the van, thus leaving space inside the vehicle.

The electric T6 has an all-wheel drive and a top speed of 150 kph. The interior is unchanged apart from a large tablet displaying all relevant data such as SOC.

Before the electric van will take up service at Durot Electric’s client, the company will present it to the public at the WAVE rally starting this weekend in Switzerland.

electrive.net (PI, in German)

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BYD looking to set up battery factory in Europe

Tue, 06/05/2018 - 15:07

With the European industry divided over setting up battery cell production on the continent, rivals from Asia are keen to make a move. Now BYD joins the growing circle of established cell makers who consider taking their share of the future.

Whilst Brussels’ call for a homegrown battery industry has been futile so far, Asian manufacturers are quick to expand production to where the market is.

China’s BYD now told Reuters they were “considering cell production outside of China and that includes Europe,” but without providing any more detail. Julia Chen, Global Sales Director at BYD Batteries, only added that a battery factory “would be possible wherever there’s a market.”

According to estimates of the European Commission there clearly is a market and one that could soon be worth 220 GWh of batteries or 250 billion euros, according to EU Commissioner Maroš Šefčovič. He wants to see a “Battery Airbus” and expects that more than ten Gigafactories à la Tesla would be needed by 2025 to fulfil demand for batteries in the EU (we reported).

Whilst the response from the industry has been cautious if not dismissive, the EU went ahead with a draft for a Europan Battery Alliance (EBA) that wants to carve out a unique selling point in making certified green batteries. Šefčovič estimates this “would need around 20 billion euros investment,”  and stressed that “the Alliance, needs to be driven by the Industry. We, the Commission, are here as system integrator or facilitator.”

Yet, only PSA has voiced their support to date with CEO Carlos Tavares telling MPs in France that he’d “enthusiastically supports the creation of a European champion in battery development and manufacturing.”

In Germany though, Bosch has backed off from any cell making in Europe. This had left Germany’s TerraE Holding hoping to receive considerable funding from the EU government. Also Northvolt that plans to built a Gigafactory in Sweden has received support from both its home country as well as the EU and is working on a pilot plant to start with. Siemens is backing the company led by former Tesla manager Peter Carlsson. In France, Siemens is also cooperating with Saft, Manz and Solvay. Together they want to develop solid-state batteries and had openly called for EU funding (we reported).

The hope for solid-state batteries may be one of the reasons the industry as well as investors are holding back. The battery business is one of scale and so established Asian manufacturers have a clear advantage over any newcomers. Furthermore, almost all major carmakers are looking to advance solid-state battery technology although most are still on research stage and far from mass production.

reuters.com

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Daimler’s first EQC and electric S-class delayed?

Tue, 06/05/2018 - 14:28

It looks like Daimler might be coming ever later to the electric game as German Handelsblatt cites sources saying the first electric car, the EQC might be delayed with the same being alleged for the electric S-class.

Initially the EQC was to launch in early 2019 after its debut planned this September but sources told the German paper said market entry has been pushed to June 2019. Delays have been reported for the electric version of Mercedes’ luxury flagship, the S-class as well. While it was scheduled to arrive by 2020, it might not be expected before 2021.

Sources claimed shortages in battery supply as reason for both delays. Whilst Daimler would not comment at first, Handelsblatt now received a reply: Daimler is denying any delays.

The carmaker is under pressure on more than one front though with German KBA expecting them to report on diesel emissions. With Bosch having cooperated with investors openly despite (or because of) being the originator of the software that got tweaked, it looks as if Mercedes might have to face its very own diesel gate.

Furthermore, Geely is pushing for cooperation after the Chinese company had bought itself a seat at the boardroom table, as it has become Daimler’s biggest shareholder earlier this year. There had been talks of joint battery production but Daimler has been unwilling so far. Now Geely wants them to deliver motors for Volvo cars, deliberately or not.

While the EQC may be late in Europe, Daimler has been working to increase their EV production facility in China and wants to start making their electric car there before the year’s end reportedly.

Plans of a battery production facility in the People’s Republic were on the table as well. For now though, Daimler has turned to CATL to supply batteries for their EV models. So far, no problems have been reported regarding their battery supply agreement.

Still, Daimler faces a little homemade crisis on top of the allegedly adverse conditions above: CEO Dieter Zetsche is facing the end of his contract next year and must either leave or else convince the board and shareholders that he still got Mercedes’ matters under control.

handelsblatt.com (original source, in German), reuters.com

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Romania electrifies public transport helped by Swiss

Mon, 06/04/2018 - 20:53

Electric vehicles are arriving in Romania helped along with funding through the Swiss government. Cluj, the country’s second biggest city, took delivery of 10 electric buses by Solaris and got more waiting.

Cluj-Napoca has entered the first ten electric buses into service already and awaits another 30 later this year. It appears the city has topped up their existing order that back in 2017 totalled 30 electric buses reportedly.

The Solaris buses were funded through a programme by the Swiss government, which is worth some 27 million lei (about 5.8 million euros). Cluj-Napoca hopes that, by 2025, the city’s whole public transport fleet will be environmentally friendly.

Also the Romanian town of Suceava has announced plans to invest in zero emission public transport. A tender for the supply of 30 large and 15 electric minibuses is to start on July, 5 this year. Funding comes through the same Swiss programme it appears. A total of 4.7 million lei (1 million euros) has been allotted for this purchase.

Only the capital of Romania seems to be lacking behind or is trying other measures. Bucharest is one of the few cities where Uber has launched their UberGreen service so that customers may hail an electric taxi to pick them up (we reported).

Overall Romania must make some more efforts in cleaning up the air as it was among the countries that are being taken to court by the EU over failing to comply with emission standards.

romania-insider.com (Cluj-Napoca), romania-insider.com (Suceava)

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Solaris to deliver 30 electric buses to Milan

Mon, 06/04/2018 - 20:33

Polish busmaker Solaris has received a large order from Milan, where the city’s transport operator ATM has signed a contract with an option for 80 electric buses. The first 30 are set to arrive by mid-2019.

The order is worth 61.5 million euros to Solaris. They will supply Milan with 30 electric buses of type Trollino in the 18 metre version. If all goes well, another 50 might be ordered suit.

The first batch is to arrive in the Italian fashion metropolis by mid-2019. Whilst Milan operates trolley buses as well and has a longstanding relationship with Solaris, the new electric buses will run through the old town powered by their 45 kWh batteries.

For Solaris these are not the first electric buses delivered to Italy. Bergamo also turned to the Polish company to order 12 electric buses (we reported). Back then it was Solaris first contract to supply electric buses in Italy.

polandinenglish.info

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Equipmake patents spoke motor, gears for expansion

Mon, 06/04/2018 - 20:10

British electric motor firm Equipmake says it is on the brink of a major expansion based on their advance in electric drive technology. The firm patented so-called spoke machines with a new cooling technology.

Based on their patents, Equipmake from Norfolk says they will soon be building “hundreds of thousands” of said spoke machines. In fact, they want to turn from a specialist manufacturer designing KERS drives for Formula 1 through Williams for example into a large tier one supplier.

While spoke motors, where magnets inside the PMS motor are arranged like spokes of a wheel, are not a new concept, Equipmake’s way to cool the magnets is. They manage to place the coolant very close to the magnets and say they have found a cost effective way to build spoke motors. Equipmake thus claims their electric drives deliver higher continuous power than others while using less material and being more compact overall.

Equipmake’s founder Ian Foley told Autocar, they had a lead over rivals of about two year. His growth prediction builds on the company’s patent but also on growing demand from carmakers for electric drives.

In order to become a large supplier over the next five years, Equipmake wants to invest in their workforce, “employing hundreds of people and manufacturing hundreds of thousands of motors,” according to Foley. Obviously this won’t be done over night and so the company wants to take in investors in order to capitalise on their opportunity.

Equipmake aims their electric motors at the high performance EV industry as well as commercial electric vehicles.

autocar.co.uk

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FEV with new range and emission testing facility

Mon, 06/04/2018 - 18:20

Engineering service FEV expands their facility in German Alsdorf with a new testing facility. One focus is on emission and also range testing according to international standards for hybrid and electric vehicles as well as development.

The ground has been broken in Alsdorf close Aachen, where the StreetScooter was born and that is home to prolific RWTH Aachen. For FEV, it will be an expansion as the new building is next to their existing engineering offices.

The additional facility is to focus on testing an development of electrified vehicles. Says Professor Stefan Pischinger, CEO of FEV: “Further reduction of emissions and consumption is becoming increasingly important for our customers in light of current social discussions and regulation of future consumption targets. This investment at the Alsdorf location takes into account the development of clean and highly efficient drive systems.”

The new centre will have a four-wheeled chassis dynamometer for performing emissions tests in accordance with the latest legislation from the US, Europe, China, Japan, and India. In addition to the measuring and testing equipment, the testing centre is designed for developing hybrid and electric vehicles.

For conditioning, they reserved 1,700 square meters which include three different temperature ranges for conditioning, from -30°C to 50°C (-22°F to 122°F). The overall layout is optimised for roller and PEMS test operations and will also allow an additional test bench and solar simulation system to be added in future.

The expansion will also double the space for test vehicles at the Parc Fermé by an additional 200 spaces. There will also be charging stations for hybrid and electric cars.

This is not the only expansion down to growth in the electric transport industry. FEV just built on its durability test centre in Saxony-Anhalt where they installed seven new test rigs for electric motors. The company is investing more than 13m euros in its facility and got 1.9m euros from the state reportedly.
Also FEV’s battery testing centre in France is being expanded and will reopen before the year’s end. There, the 600 sqm building will host four walk-in chambers to test big traction batteries, four battery-pack chambers with a test capacity of up to 1,200 V and up to 300 testing channels for battery cells and modules.

The FEV Group employs over 5,000 specialists in high-tech development centres at 40 locations on four continents. Their headquarter is in Aachen.

fev.com

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Aussie Tesla owners built their own charging network

Mon, 06/04/2018 - 15:44

A group of dedicated Tesla owners in Australia has taken Tesla fandom to another level. In a concerted effort they set up their own EV charging network spanning all Australia and providing EV drivers of all kinds with a charge route.

The Round Australia Electric Highway runs around the tiny big continent on a route spanning about 17,000km. Charging outlets are on average 200 kilometres apart and never more than 400 km.

The network was completed this May and mostly utilises 32 amp three-phase charge points, which are suitable to charge all types of EVs. The charge rate is at 110km range per hour so not exactly a Supercharger rate but more than enough to go further.

The idea for the charging network was born from the Tesla Owners Club of Australia (TOCA) with the costs of the chargers split between TOCA and the Australian Electric Vehicle Association.

So far, efforts to install charging infrastrcuture Down Under have largely happened on the local level. The Australian Capital Territory for example will receive 50 new standard dual electric vehicle chargers beginning delivery this year, before completion in the next. The 456,000 dollar initiative is funded by the Territory government reportedly.

Tesla itself has so far concentrated Supercharge efforts on Australia’s east coast that is home to Melbourne, Sidney and Canberra. Single Tesla EV charging spots can be found in Perth and few in Adelaide.

reneweconomy.com.au, teslaowners.org.au, tesla.com (Superchargers Down Under)

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Lufthansa puts Swedish eTug to work at FRA (gallery)

Mon, 06/04/2018 - 15:21

Frankfurt Airport (FRA) operates an extensive electrification strategy. As it is Lufthansa’s home base, the airline complements the airport’s efforts and has turned to Sweden’s Kalmar to order their 700 kW eTug that can tow very large jets emissionfree.

Kalmar’s two-of-a-kind electric vehicle is made to tow the big guns, that is aircrafts such as the Airbus A380 and the Boeing 747. Lufthansa’s LEOS, the airlines’ ground handling service, has been using the world’s first eTug at Frankfurt Airport since 2016 and has now put a second one into operation.

The second model has been improved, taking into account feedback from Lufthansa operators. Kalmar’s 700 kW electric vehicle parks large aircraft with a take-off weight of up to 60 tons purely electrically and tows them to the hangar, to the gate or on the runway. In order to do so, the eTug nimbly – considering its weight and size of 9.70 x 4.50 metres – maneuvers with an all-wheel drive and all-wheel steering. The eSchlepper’s lithium-ion batteries have a capacity of 180 kilowatt hours and can be recharged even during operation with a small range extender, a diesel generator.

Both eTug’s made by Swedish company Kalmar Motors AB are part of the E-PORT AN initiative, a joint project by Fraport, Lufthansa, the State of Hesse and the Rhine-Main model electro-mobility region to electrify operations at Germany’s main international airport. The Technical University of Darmstadt and the Technical University of Berlin lend scientific support.

Cargotech specialist Kalmar plans to offer electric versions of all their vehicle models by 2021 reportedly. Kalmar produces industrial vehicles, such as forklifts and tractors for ports, airport terminals and logistics centres, mainly at its base in Sweden in the town of Kalmar that gave the firm its name and is close to the island of Öland in the south of Sweden.

lufthansagroup.com

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Nissan sells 100,000 Leaf electric cars in Europe

Mon, 06/04/2018 - 14:42

Nissan says it has reached another milestone for its bestselling electric car as the Leaf has found buyer no. 100,000 in Madrid. Over a third of all Leaf electric cars sold in Europe are now the latest model that was released only this February.

For Nissan, electric cars have proven a success over many years even though they are only selling the Leaf in the passenger car segment for now. The sensible electric car just recently got a make over and sales have increased since deliveries started on the continent.

By now, over 100,000 Nissan Leaf have been sold in Europe and Nissan says about 37,000 of those were the 2018 model generation that is made at their Sunderland plant in the UK.

Susana de Mena, the milestone buyer of the 100,000th Leaf comes from Madrid and her location played a role in her buying decision. Says de Mena: “We are very conscious that we must respect and protect the environment, so we knew we’d want to go 100% electric. On top of this, an electric car lets us get to the very centre of Madrid when ordinary vehicles can sometimes be restricted due to pollution issues.”

Madrid is about to introduce the so-called “Hyper Center” an ultra-low to no emission zone in the centre of the Spanish capital. This has led the industry to start making Madrid an EV sharing paradise with Bosch’s Coup having installed a large electric scooter fleet to share. Also carmakers have made Madrid a proving ground for electric car sharing with Zity or Car2Go running all-electric schemes.

For Nissan, Spain is only one market for their electric car in Europe, where they say one new Leaf is sold every 10 minutes. European Nissan Leaf customers have now driven over 2 billion kilometres and saved over 300,000 tonnes of CO2, according to the company. The electric car drivers also boast a 92% customer satisfaction rate, more than any other Nissan model – #rapidgate aside…

nissan-europe.com

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New electric scooters from Gogoro lighter and faster

Mon, 06/04/2018 - 14:09

Taiwan’s Gogoro launches two new all-electric scooters destined to hit their home market first. Both models features the company’s signature battery swap so useful when in the sharing business such as with Bosch’s Coup.

The company from Taiwan is proving an ongoing success and counts clients like Bosch among their fans that use their electric scooters for their LEV sharing subsidiary Coup. The latter just expanded to Madrid, adding another 850 Gogoro scooters to the fleet in Europe.

Over in Taiwan though, the latest models rolling off the lines, the Gogoro 2 Delight and Gogoro S2, are said to deliver a range over 100 kilometres. The Gogoro 2 Delight features 6.4 kW while the Gogoro S2 comes 7.6 kW, thus making it the brand’s performance model. It is also Gogoro’s fastest with a top speed of 92 kph whilst the Delight is capped at 88 kph.

The range of 110 kilometres is the same for both models as they use Gogoro’s statdardised 1.3 kWh battery of which the firm says it can be swapped in less than six seconds. Gogoro’s business model includes so-called GoStations, where drivers can simply pull up to trade their empty batteries for freshly charged ones from a sort of battery vending machine. Payment is either on a plan, not unlike a phone top-up or else with unlimited access.

Gogoro has 596 battery swap stations across Taiwan, with a station every 1 km (0.6 miles) in Taipei at the moment. Also in Berlin, where Bosch initially installed the first Coup system, you can find such GoStations around the city for battery swapping and Coup has come to Paris as well reportedly.

Back home in Taiwan, Gogoro is poised for growth driven further by favourable legislation. The government in Taipei has ordered all two-wheelers to turn their wheels with zero emissions by 2035 (we reported). The measure is part of a bill that also wants to ban all sales of combustion engine vehicles by 2040.

The Gogoro S2 and Gogoro 2 Delight electric scooters are only available in Taiwan for the time being.

digitimes.com, gogoro.com (Gogoro 2 Delight), gogoro.com (Gogoro S2)

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BYD and Daimler increase spending on Denza

Mon, 06/04/2018 - 13:41

China’s BYD and Daimler will put more money behind their joint electric vehicle venture Denza in China as they increase their investment. Both will add another 400 million RMB, (about 53M euros) in order to build on production and service.

The total of 800 million yuan or over 100 million euros serves BYD and Daimler to increase their efforts in selling upmarket electric cars in China. Thei 50:50 joint venture Shenzhen Denza New Energy Automotive Co., Ltd., or Denza in short, was founded in 2010 and has since catered its electric cars to the PRC exclusively.

The first model, the all-electric Denza 500 received an upgrade very recently. A new battery designed and built by BYD as well as further weight reductions extended the range of the electric car to around 500 km. From Mercedes comes the EV’s architecture, most visibly “tiger eye” LED headlights, the absence of a radiator grill, and rippling LED taillights.

This latest investment is said to increase sales of above car and to also expand the service network, as it is to tie into Mercedes’ strategic dealer group and their multiple dealer shop, sales and service network.

gasgoo.com, yicaiglobal.com

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France to utilise hydrogen across all sectors

Mon, 06/04/2018 - 12:57

Minister of Environment, Nicolas Hulot, has a new strategy as he aims for France to draw heavily on hydrogen and fuel cell technology. The plan includes all levels of the country’s economy and details a turn in transport through FCVs and infrastructure.

The “plan Hydrogène” or hydrogen strategy is “to make France a world leader in this technology,” according to Minister Hulot. President Macron’s man for the environment has managed to carve out a budget of 100 million euros to be allocated from 2019.

Whilst the plan entails industry and the energy market as well, a big part of the transition relies on transport. Hydrogen charging infrastructure is planned with 100 hydrogen filling stations to be installed throughout 2023. By 2028, their number shall increase to between 400 and 1,000 H2 stops ideally.

They are to keep 5,000 fuel cell vehicles going, particularly in the commercial sector. The hydrogen strategy also includes heavier CVs such as fuel cell buses, trucks and even ships. By 2023, Minister Hulot aims for 200 of such heavy vehicles and wants to see their number grow to 20,000 – 50,000 light commercial vehicles and between 800 and 2,000 heavier ones by 2028. A parliamentary mission is to look into the feasibility of hydrogen trains later this year as well.

A framework for the regulation of filling station is in the making. Funding and coordination of the transition lies with ADEME, the French Environment and Energy Management Agency. The government also plans the creation of an international center for qualification and certification of high-pressure components for road transport, aeronautics, maritime, river, and railway using hydrogen.

Overall, France wants to instil hydrogen in the industry, aiming for 10 percent by 2023 and between 20% to 40% by 2028. To measure their progress, a tracing system is to be introduced by 2020 as part of the European framework under discussion, that is the revision of the renewable energy directive.

It appears as if both the largest nations of Europe, Germany and France, have come into their regulatory power, targeting industry and logistics for a turn in transport (Verkehrswende) rather than private tax payers. Germany proposed a new scheme today to subsidise electric and fuel cell trucks.

fuelcellsworks.com, gasworld.com

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