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Updated: 21 hours 5 min ago

Renault and ADA start e-car sharing Moov’in in Paris

Mon, 07/23/2018 - 17:39

The planned EV sharing offer by Renault in Paris is taking shape: The French automobile manufacturer will cooperate with ADA to start the free-floating car-sharing service in September. The service will start with 100 Zoe and 20 Twizy.

As of January 2019, the service will be expanded in steps. Renault is planning to offer a 2,000 strong electric vehicle fleet in the greater Paris area by the end of next year. The timing is good: Currently the communities around Paris are extricating themselves from the deeply indebted Autolib program by Bolloré. The plug is expected to be pulled at the end of the month. Renault is one of several manufacturers who have an eye on the market gap.

The fleet comprising of 100 Zoe and 20 Twizy will start in the eleventh and twelfth Arrondissement of Paris and the community of Clichy, which borders the northern side of the capital. Renault has described the start as a testing phase, and plans to perform quality optimisation.

The cooperation with ADA, a subsidiary of the Rousselet group with more than 100 rental car agencies in the capital, will look as follows: Renault will manufacture the EVs and cover maintenance and repairs, while ADA will provide the digital app for the car-sharing service, as well as charging and positioning the vehicles, and the financial aspects of the transaction.

In further news from the capital, Paris’ mayor Anne Hidalgo recently mentioned that other companies had also expressed interest in becoming a car-sharing operator in the city. It seems that Paris is not planning on passing Autolib’s legacy on to one single car-sharing operator, but plans to split the work between several. It is already known that PSA will start a car-sharing service, for example. The service will start with 500 EVs from Peugeot and Citroën.

electriccarsreport.com, group.renault.com

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Chinese EV startup Gyon presents first car model

Mon, 07/23/2018 - 16:57

Gyon is one of the newest EV manufacturers from the Chinese mainland. They have also recently announced their first vehicle model, which will be presented together with the brand in Los Angeles on the 08th of August. The vehicle features a 700 km range and will be able to accelerate from 0 – 100 km/h in four seconds.

A teaser image was released to create some hype for their presentation event. As far as we can tell, the silhouette looks like it belongs to a luxury sports vehicle with dynamic design.

What we do know so far, is that Gyon picked up the Chinese startup Sitech Electric Automobile as an investor, and is cooperating with the US American company Gaffoglio Family Metalcrafters for design. The autonomous driving system with which the vehicle is equipped was provided by Bosch.


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Didi and Singulato potential customers for Magna-BAIC

Mon, 07/23/2018 - 16:48

The ride-share operator Didi Chuxing looks to be the first major customer for the new EV joint venture by Magna and BAIC in China. Singulato Motors also looks to have the JV produce their vehicles in future.

The report breaking the news did not specify sources, but did have five of them confirm that the appropriate negotiations had been kept under tight wraps thus far. Magna could export their European business model, where they are manufacturing EVs for Mercedes, BMW and Jaguar as a contract partner. The model could be very successful in China, where there are several automobile startups who lack production capacities.

This background also explains the potential deals with Didi and Singulato. The Chinese ride-share operator has already been working with BAIC for some time to develop an EV specifically suited to their needs. By 2020, they plan to present their own vehicle which will be called the D1. Later, the D2 and D3 models will follow as upgrades are made. Didi is putting their iron in several fires with preparation for the production, and also announced a cooperation with Continental to develop networked EVs, which will be modified to help serve the unique needs of the ride-share operator.

Singulato can expand on the already existing cooperation with BAIC, which is focused on the development of intelligent vehicles and gaining access to their required resources. Their startup seems nearly ready to begin production, but does not yet have the required license for vehicle assembly. Time is also running low: the market launch for Singulato’s debut BEV iS6 was announced for the end of this year.

As a reminder: In June the automobile supplier Magna signed two joint venture agreements with Beijing Electric Vehicle (BJEV), the subsidiary of BAIC. The location for the JV is will be BAIC factory in Zhenjiang with a production capacity of up to 180,000 vehicles.

In October Magna announced the founding a of a joint venture in China for electrical motors with SAIC subsidiary Huayu Automotive Systems.


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Volkswagen to upgrade manufacturing to 160 e-Golf daily

Mon, 07/23/2018 - 16:28

VW is planning to upgrade their manufacturing capacities in Wolfsburg and Dresden during the summer months from 120 vehicles to 160 e-Golfs manufactured daily. They are not the only ones to do so.

More automobile manufacturers are responding to the long delivery times for electrified vehicles by increasing production capacities. The most recent company to join the trend is Volkswagen. The Wolfsburg-based company plans to reach a production target of 160 e-Golfs per day, as well as determine whether another manufacturing increase is necessary. At the start of March, VW announced a second shift at the “gläserne Manufaktur” factory in Dresden, where the daily production capacity was increased from 36 to 72 vehicles per day.

It was also somewhat recently announced that BMW would increase production capacities for the i-model vehicles in fall of this year from 130 to 200 vehicles per day. A BMW spokesperson referenced a 50% increase in production for the incoming upgrade in their Leipzig facility. This is the location where the i3 and i8 are being manufactured. In future, the automobile manufacturer plans to produce both EVs as well as combustion vehicles in the same locations.

Renault also recently announced their plan to double production capacities for the Zoe at their factory in Flins, as well as tripling production capacities in Cléon. The plan is to produce 440 (instead of 220) Zoe vehicles after the upgrade in fall. The initiative will cost the French company about 1 billion euro in new development and production capacities.

electrive.net (German)

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Tesla plans to improve spare part replacement and service

Mon, 07/23/2018 - 16:07

Tesla has announced a series of new initiatives to improve their service around the globe. Among other things, a new distribution centre for spare parts was opened in California, tripling the capacity for parts of North America. A similar facility is planned for Europe, as well.

Additionally, the Californians are planning to improve their global service area from 25% to 40% coverage by the end of the year, particularly in markets where customer satisfaction was found to be low. They plan to expand “aggressively” and hire additional personnel to deal with the challenge. As an example, Tesla Norway was cited, where the service team has already grown by 30% compared to last year, and the opening of a new service centre is planned.  It was reported that customer complaints rained hard on Tesla and customers had to wait up to several months for support from service centres.

Furthermore, Tesla announced a plan to set up a small network of chassis workshop in selected markets. This will test whether small repairs can be done closer to locations, and will evaluate whether this type of customer support works and could be expanded.

At the same time, Tesla has bid a few of their suppliers to repay a part of their already made payments in order to help the company become more cost-effective. This revelation came from an announcement sent by Tesla to suppliers.

At the start of the month, Tesla wrote to their north American customers asking for the final payment of 2,500 dollars following the 1,000 dollar pre-payment, before their vehicle will be finished. This is likely also part of Tesla’s ambitious goal to become profitable within a short time. At the same time, there are also multiple reports regarding tense working conditions at the company who are assembling the vehicles.

electrek.co (Service), electrek.co (Payments)

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Lots of Model 3s pose questions

Mon, 07/23/2018 - 15:57

Parking lots full of Model 3s have been spotted around California last week, promptly giving rise to renewed speculation regarding the vehicle. Some critics even went so far as to accuse Tesla of cheating investors by manufacturing cars no-one ordered.

While we can’t speak to why Tesla would be stockpiling the cars, the rumors have certainly inflamed both fans and detractors.

Scenario 3) The cars can't be delivered, because the buyer would refuse delivery.

This is a fraud scenario. $tsla will have lied about "cars produced."

— Value Dissenter (@ValueDissenter) July 20, 2018


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VW founds subsidiary to construct Canadian charging network

Sun, 07/22/2018 - 18:59

Volkswagen has founded another subsidiary after Electrify America too construct an EV charging network in Canada. The company is called Electrify Canada and will set up a DC charging network that will include HPCs.

The charging network is planned to go live in the second quarter of 2019. For starters, a network of 32 charging stations will be set up near highways and in metropolitan areas around British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario and Quebec with four charge points and performance between 50 and 350 kW, on average.

Daniel Weissland, CEO of Volkswagen Group Canada, said in a statement. “We are thrilled to be able to offer this service and to take a leadership position in providing this key EV adoption enabler to the Canadian market.”

globenewswire.com, greencarreports.com, digitaljournal.com

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Mega contract: BYD to deliver 4,000 e-buses to Guangzhou

Sun, 07/22/2018 - 18:47

BYD announced in an ad-hoc statement to investors that two major bidding calls for the delivery of electric buses in China. The company will deliver more than 4,000 electric buses to several companies in Guangzhou.

The exact numbers for the contract are 4,810 electric buses, where BYD managed to receive the majority of it – specifically 4,437 buses. The company will deliver models in different sizes ranging between 8 and 12 metres. The total value for both contracts is around 5.52 billion Yuan (0.7 billion euros). In the next step, BYD will sign individual agreements with the customers in Guangzhou.

BYD has also been collecting orders from Europe and North America, even if the bids are slightly smaller. Public transit operator Nobina ordered 24 BYD electric buses for use in the Swedish province of Södermanland, where they will likely start use in the summer of 2019. Nobina is already using BYD buses in Ängelholm and Oslo, and has ordered more for the communities around Nortällje, Landskrona and Oslo.

Furthermore, the Toronto Transit Commission (TTC), the largest public transport operator in Canada ordered another ten BYD electric buses, combined with an option to expand the order to 30 more.

iis.aastocks.com (PDF), greencarcongress.com, bydeurope.com, 4-traders.com, quamnet.com

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Mecalac digger 12MTX will come with electrical variant

Sun, 07/22/2018 - 18:11

Supplier Dana Incorporated has developed an electric drive system in cooperation with Mecalac for their compact digger Mecalac 12MTX. The electric version of the digger is called e12 and features two electric motors and a 146 kW battery pack.

With the electric system, the digger will have an operating time of 8 hours. The lithium-iron-phosphate battery (LiFePO4) can be charged overnight within about seven hours.

Patrick Brehmer, the head of product design and management at Mecalac stated that the challenge to electrify the vehicle were three-fold: “Any electric engine must rise to three major challenges: range, performance and compactness. The Mecalac e12 is the first 100%-electric excavator that does not compromise on any of those three criteria.” He stated that a major factor had been the decision to separate the energy source from the drivers cabin. This allowed for the 146 kWh performance and the eight hour operating period.

Mecalac is a construction machinery manufacturer from Schleswig-Holstein, which used to belong to Ahlmann Baumaschinen GmbH, and was purchased by the French Groupe Mecalac in 2002.

dana.mediaroom.com, mecalac.com

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Terrafugia: First flying car to go in production in 2019

Sun, 07/22/2018 - 17:58

The flying car developer taken over by Geely, has announced that they will be ready to begin production on a two-seated flying car named Transition with a hybrid system next year. Details to price and performance have not been released yet.

The Transition was designed for the needs of the road, as well as the air, and will be powered with a hybrid system and lithium-iron-phosphate battery (LiFePO4). It will also feature a boost function, which will temporarily provide a significant speed increase.

The newest adaptions, including the interior setup, safety systems, parachute system, motor and flight instruments, will be extensively tested in the incoming prototype, before serial production will begin. CEO Chris Jaran sees the project in a critical stage: “We can implement the best design features based on years of flight and drive testing. This will improve function, safety and aesthetics for the optimal flying and driving experience.”

Next for the development process will be to pass FAA and NHTSA standards for both air as well as road traffic.

Next to the Transition, Terrafugia is also working on a VTOL for cargo and personal transport named TF-2. The company was founded by an MIT graduate in 2006.

digitaltrends.com, newatlas.com, terrafugia.com

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Honda bringing Clarity to Japan as a plug-in hybrid

Sat, 07/21/2018 - 13:33

Honda will be bringing their Clarity, which was originally marketed as an FCEV, to Japan as a plug-in hybrid. For the first year, the company hopes to sell around 1,000 units.

The Honda Clarity PHEV will have a purely electric range of 114.6 km, thanks to a 17 kWh battery (The WLTP range was called 101 km) and will start selling in Japan for about 5.9 million Yen (45,000 euro). Propulsion is managed by the combination of a 1.5 litre combustion motor and a new hybrid system call i-MMD, which combined two electric motors. Honda stated this is the first vehicle where the system is being installed. The total performance of the Clarity PHEV stands at 135 kW. The battery of the vehicle will also be fast-charging capable and will be able to charge to 80% capacity in 30 minutes, according to the manufacturer.

Last year there had been some rumors that Honda were planning a fully electric version of the Clarity. Over the past year, not much has changed with the situation, however. The market launch of the Clarity PHEV has not brought mention of any further BEV development with it. The company generally set themselves the goal to make about 2/3 of their income through the sale of electrified vehicles by 2040.

english.kyodonews.net, autocarpro.in, global.honda

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Fully electric Niro available in South Korea

Fri, 07/20/2018 - 19:29

Kia has started selling their Niro EV in South Korea. The European premiere will take place at the Paris Motor Show, and will be available before the end of the year.

The fully electric Niro is Kia’s second BEV after the Soul EV that is sold globally. After the market launch in Europe toward the end of 2018, the Niro will continue to north America in the first quarter of 2019.

The EV completes the Niro model range, which had previously only included a complete hybrid and a plug-in hybrid version. Since their launch in 2016, the hybrid variants of the Niro sold around 200,000 units around the world.

As previously reported, the battery for the fully electric Nuro as well as the Hyundai Kona Electric, which was presented in February, will be offered in two variants with 39.2 kWh or 62 kWh. This will allow for ranges over 300 km for the smaller battery and 450 km with the larger one. Total consumption is stated to be 13.9 kWh for the smaller version and 14.3 kWh on the larger battery per 100 km. The values are the same as for the Kona Electric.

The electric motor in the Niro features performance of 150 kW. The charging performance for the batteries was undisclosed for some time, but it was recently confirmed that both can be charged at CCS high speed chargers (up to 100 kW) to 80% within 54 minutes.

pulsenews.co.kr, koreajoongangdaily.joins.com, kianewscenter.com

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Hyundai offers baby drivers licensing

Fri, 07/20/2018 - 18:13

At a Legoland in Germany, Hyundai is offering children aged between 7 and 13 years of age to get their “drivers license” with a look to the future. The children drive a real electric car with a top speed of up to 6 kph.
Similarly to the real thing, the kids first must undergo theoretical instruction before being allowed to drive a vehicle. They then get to drive a course with realistic traffic situations, signs and traffic lights.

We’re not quite sure if they’re allowed to build their own cars, but surely that can’t be too far off.

hyundai.news (in German)

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London Gatwick expanding electric car sharing

Thu, 07/19/2018 - 18:23

The UK airport has launched a car-sharing service with ten electric vehicles and charge points from Bolloré’s BlueCity, building on an earlier trial. The vehicles are part of a larger city fleet, and can be used and dropped anywhere in London.

Gatwick also stated that the cost to drive one of the 4-door vehicles from the airport to the city centre would cost about £15 “in moderate traffic”. Should the service prove successful, the initiative is set to expand further. Chief commercial officer Guy Stephenson said: “Given the popular demand for similar electric car sharing services in other parts of the world, this new service has the potential to take off in the UK and we are proud to be at the forefront of this transport revolution.”

This also marks Bluecity’s first airport-based charging hub. Their managing director, Christophe Arnaud stated: “Our cars are powered exclusively with 100% renewable energy making the service the greenest and most affordable transport option to and from central London.”

For Bolloré, this is good news after their crisis in Paris, where the city cancelled their Autolib contract reportedly. In London however, BlueCity has been undergoing successful trials and also expanded the charging network BluePoint.

travelweekly.co.uk, airport-world.com, gatwickairport.com

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Berlin’s tourist double-deckers to go electric

Thu, 07/19/2018 - 18:03

The companies Tassima, Ziehl-Abegg and IAV are working together to electrify the tourist double-decker buses in Berlin. The diesel buses were once used for public transit, and will now be electrified to serve tourists.

Several hundred vehicles are being spoken of, which will be refitted with electric motors in a factory in Brandenburg. In order to achieve this, the vehicle refitters Tassima, the supplier Ziehl-Abegg and the engineering partner IAV entered a strategic partnership. The double-decker buses owned by the BVG are already in use as sightseeing buses, but still maintain their old diesel motors, which will now start changing.

The work split between the three partners will look as follows: Ziehl-Abegg is developing and producing the electric drive axle for conversion, where the electric motor and performance electronics are integrated into the wheel hub. Tassima, and their specialized team will take care of the conversion itself, as per their specialty. IAV will deliver the components. Finally a traction battery will be mounted where the diesel motors are currently located.

source: via Email

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Foresee Power to deliver batteries for Alstom’s e-bus Aptis

Thu, 07/19/2018 - 17:34

The decision has fallen: the French battery manufacturer ForseePower will be delivering the lithium-ion batteries for Altom’s e-bus Aptis. Serial production is slated to begin in early 2019.

The vehicle is a fully electric bus designed to resemble a trolley, which features four steerable wheels. First tests for the Aptis are planned on Parisian streets in the near future. The electric buses will be serially fitted with lithium-ion batteries with NMC chemicals, which is where Foresee Power enters the game.

An announcement by the Alstom states that the two companies Alstom and Foresee cooperated to develop a specialized battery for the buses. The charging speed as well as the number of battery modules will be selectable by public transport operators in future. The Aptis will have a range between 150 km and 250 km, depending on which battery package is selected. A cooperation for real-time analysis for the battery system is also underway, to help optimize use and life-time.

The batteries delivered by Foresee Power will be rented to transit operators by Alstom. The concept is designed to alleviate the cost of purchasing an electric bus for customers, by spreading the cost over time.


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China: GAC and CATL found two joint ventures

Thu, 07/19/2018 - 17:27

The Chinese automobile manufacturer GAC and the battery cell supplier CATL have founded two joint ventures in Guangzhou to produce and market batteries for BEV’s and PHEV’s. The corresponding contract was signed today.

With a starting capital of 1 billion Yuan (about 127 million euro) the first JV, called Amperex GAC Power Battery will focus on manufacturing and developing batteries, as well as after-sales and a consulting service. The second one will start with a fund of 100 million Yuan (13 million euro) and will be called GAC Amperex Power Battery System, which will focus exclusively on battery development and sales. GAC and CATL each own 51 and 49% of the companies, respectively.

“The joint ventures are going to deepen cooperation between CATL and GAC Group in the field of new-energy vehicles. We will fully take advantage and leverage the resources of both parties to further expand business scale, and enhance profitability and competitiveness,” said CATL in a statement.

shine.cn, yicaiglobal.com

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LG Chem to open second battery factory in China

Thu, 07/19/2018 - 17:11

LG Chem has announced plans to construct a second battery plant in China for EVs. The new factory will be set in Nanjing, like the first, and construction will begin this October. Battery production will likely start a year later by October 2019.

The South Korean company is responding to growing demand for battery cells, and plan to achieve an annual production capacity of 32 GWh in the new facility by 2023. This would provide enough batteries for 500,000 electrified vehicles. The company is planning investments around 2 trillion Won (about 1.53 billion euro) to make this happen.

Outside of China, LG is also operating battery factories for vehicle manufacturing in South Korea, the USA, the Netherlands and Poland. Their main customers include the US company GM, as well as Volvo, Renault, South Korea’s largest automobile manufacturer Hyundai and their subsidiary Kia.

LG Chem is under pressure, as is Samsung SDI, as both companies are losing ground to Chinese battery manufacturers. An analysis by market researchers at SNE research showed that both Korean manufacturers are losing ground to Chinese competitors. Between January and April 2018, LG Chem delivered batteries with a total capacity of 1.671 GWh. That is a 38.9% increase compared to the same time period in the previous year. Despite the growth, the market percentage fell from 13.8% in 2017 to 10.6% this year. In the global rankings, LG fell from second to fourth place.

businesskorea.co.kr, donga.com, reuters.com

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Govecs takes over Stuttgart ID bike brand Elmoto

Thu, 07/19/2018 - 16:58

The electric scooter manufacturer Govecs is taking over the brand Elmoto from ID-Bike, further expanding their electric scooter model range. The company will begin releasing their next bike, the Elmoto HR4 at the start of next year.

Govecs will be taking over the operational business aspects as well as all employees from Elmoto. The location of ID-Bike in Stuttgart will be taken over and integrated into the Govecs network. The financial details behind the acquisition were not released.

ID-Bike is a manufacturer of light electric bicycles, which has sold more than 4,000 bikes since being founded in 2008. Thomas Grübel, ceo of Govecs stated: “We have already known the ELMOTO team for many years now. We will benefit from their many years’ experience and expertise, especially in research & development and in product design.”

Govecs is known for their Go! series and Schwalbe electric scooters. In the B2B market, the company was able to prepare for e-scooter sharing business early, and now does business with three of the four largest sharing services in Europe. Next to Cityscoot, Cooltra in Spain and emmy in Germany are part of Govecs’ list of customers, as well as multiple food delivery services. The company produces their scooters in the Polish Breslau, unlike most of their competitors, who are largely manufacturing in China.

The company also stated that many ride-sharing operators are ready to expand to further cities and regions, and Govecs delivered 2,750 new electric scooters to Cityscoot in France, who expanded their fleet to around 4,350 scooters with the purchase.

By taking over Elmoto, Govecs is also moving to be more dominant in the growing B2C market. CEO Thomas Grübel is convinced that the Elmoto team’s experience will prove invaluable for this, as well as research and design efforts.

Govec’s scooters are sold via their own platform HappyScooter. In future, the company plans to add more stores next to their flagship store in Berlin across Germany, as well as in several European metropolises.


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Possible battery upgrade for BMW i3

Thu, 07/19/2018 - 16:16

Rumours surrounding the BMW i3 receiving a battery upgrade have been circulating for some time and have now been amplified. Apparently BMW has been preparing intensively to introduce a 120 Ah battery by the end of 2018 or, early 2019.

The NEDC range for the new battery would upgrade the i3 to a 350 km range, according to a report by the BMW blog. A year ago, they already predicted that the company was planning to use battery cells with a 120 Ah capacity by the end of 2018 (we reported).

The total capacity of the battery would rise to about 42 kWh and allow for a significantly higher range. In everyday life – and we are talking from experience as our editor-in-chief drives an i3 – the 94 Ah cells last for about 200 kilometres realistically, while the NEDC indicates 300 km. An upgrade to 120 Ah would thus result in about 400 km in NEDC terms and in 260 to 300 km in real-life.

In terms of market entry, the report states that the new 120 Ah batteries will receive similar treatment to the 94 Ah batteries – at first the bigger battery will be available as an upgrade, before it eventually replaces the smaller version as serial components.

The market entry of the i3 was about five years ago. At the last IAA, the Bavarians also presented a successor model, flanked by the new Performance variant i3s. The global market rollout for the newly fitted i3 and the i3S started last November.


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