Wind and solar cost less than coal for power

wind farmProducing renewable electricity is cheaper than running old coal plants, a new report from investment firm Lazard shows. Lazard reports that new wind farms in the U.S. can produce power for $29 to $56 per megawatt-hour, compared to $27 to $45 for existing coal-fired powerplants, according to a report last week in the British Financial Times…
Source: Hybrid and Electric Car News and Reviews

First Ride: Ural Electric cT Concept

Spoiler Alert: It kinda rules.

Back at the beginning of October, I had the pleasure of flying out to Seattle to try out Ural’s new electric cT concept. I flew out of Detroit Metro on a Friday Afternoon—shout out to Alaska Air’s killer cheese plate—and landed in blustery Seattle just as the sun was setting. By the time I got up to Ural HQ in Redmond, it was dark, cold, and the rain was starting up—the perfect time to pick up an experimental electric motorcycle. After a tutorial and a quick shakedown in the parking lot, I rode the unnervingly silent cT back to the hotel, parked it, and hit the sack.

Next morning I was up and out of the hotel as soon as it was light out. See, I only had a few hours with the prototype so I wanted to make the most of it. In the run-up to my visit, Ural had planned a few routes for me—some city, some country—that were within the bike’s range but still challenging enough to give me a feel for it. Since I’m a city boy, I chose a route that took me from Redmond to Pike’s Place Market. The route was primarily surface streets, but I detoured a couple times to wind the bike out on the freeway to see what it could do.

Electric Ural cT Concept Ride

In the eight or so hours I had the bike, I rode down into the city for breakfast with a good friend at the amazing and hilariously named Biscuit Bitch, explored some neighborhoods, rode down to Gas Works Park for some pictures, let some kids sit in the sidecar, stopped at half a dozen coffee shops, ate a truly mediocre shwarma, and generally put the prototype through its paces. It performed flawlessly.

The electric cT is incredibly smooth and quiet thanks to the Zero powerplant and battery packs. It has excellent throttle response and is quick off the line thanks to the instant-on torque from the electric motor, though all that legendary electric motor torque seemed offset a bit by the weight of the bike and the sidecar-mounted batteries. That said, it’s way quicker and more responsive than its gas-burning siblings.

Electric Ural cT Concept Ride

Thanks to the Zero controller and some custom-made software, the electric cT has three riding modes; sport, economy, and custom. Sport is Zero’s regular sport mode that uses all the powerplant’s power and does no regenerative braking. Economy is the standard Zero setting and does all the regenerative braking. Custom was designed especially for the cT and is a mix of both modes with some tweaked levels to compensate for the sidecar. I left the bike primarily in custom mode and it did everything I wanted around town.  I hopped on the freeway to try out sport mode, and let me tell you, it’s definitely sporty. It took all the anxiety out of merging and passing, and easily kept up with the flow of traffic.

Around town, the electric cT is just as agile and easy to live with as a standard model. It gets in and out of parking spots no problem and weaves through heavy city traffic with ease. It’s definitely going to need a handlebar-mounted reverse switch if it goes to production, though. That’s a must-have.

Overall, the electric cT is a pretty remarkable piece of engineering and surprisingly well sorted for a prototype. It’s easy to ride, gets surprisingly good range considering A: it’s a proof-of-concept, B: it weighs a ton, and C: the electric powerplant systems are a couple years old, and is a fantastic mix of old and new. If a cobbled-together electric Ural running circa 2016 Zero parts is this good, and it is very good, friends, an all-electric cT with a dedicated, modern powerplant will be phenomenal.

Hopefully we’ll see something very much like the electric cT on showroom floors soon. I’ll take one in military green, please.

Source: Electric Vehicle News

Nissan LEAF Sales In Europe Increased In October 2018

More than 8,300 LEAFs were sold globally in October

Nissan reports that in Europe sales of the Nissan LEAF amounted to 4,758 last month, which is better than in September and the 2nd highest result since the all-time record of 6,503 in March.

LEAF remains one of the top Nissan models in Europe, taking probably the highest ever share in the brand’s volume – at 10.2%!

We assume that so far this year Nissan sold some 35,000 LEAFs in Europe and there are still thousands of orders waiting to be fulfilled.

Total Nissan LEAF sales in the four biggest markets amounted to 8,307 in October:

  • Europe – 4,758
  • Japan – 1,675
  • U.S. – 1,234
  • Canada – 640

If only the U.S. market would get more appetite for the LEAF it could be 10,000+ every month, but apparently, the 40 kWh version, without a liquid battery cooling system, makes consumers willing to wait for 60 kWh or opt for other models.

Source: Electric Vehicle News

Analysis: Tesla Pickup Truck Battery Size, Range, & 0-60-MPH Time

Our model suggests that the upcoming Tesla Pickup Truck will have a 200 kWh battery, 380-mile range, and a 3.9 second 0-60-mph time.

We don’t know much about the specifics of the Tesla Pickup Truck but what we do know was summarized in an Electrek article: Tesla pickup truck-Everything we know so far.

Here’s a summary:

  • It’s going to be a big truck.
    • Musk said that it will feature a step that will lower to step into the truck and he said that Andre the Giant will be able to fit in the driver’s seat.
  • The Tesla Truck is going to be a 6-seater.
  • It’s going to have an option for 400 to 500 miles of range “maybe higher”
    • Musk previously said that platforms like the Model S and Model X would probably be capped at 125 kWh of energy capacity, but he said that the truck platform will offer an opportunity for a much bigger battery pack.
  • Dual-motor, all-wheel-drive powertrain with dynamic suspension will be standard on the truck.
  • The truck will have a 240-volt connection for heavy-duty tools and even an air compressor to run air tools.
    • The second part was a suggestion that Musk liked since the truck will already have a pneumatic system for the air suspension.
  • ‘300,000 lbs of towing capacity’.
    • That’s another tweet where you have to ask yourself ‘is he kidding?’, but he is most often not. Though I’d bet the actual rated capacity is going to be much lower and like the Model X, owners will be able to push the truck further.
  • It will be able to float.
    • Musk referenced how the Model S is able to, but that’s up to a certain degree and it’s obviously not recommended.
  • The Tesla Truck will have lockers.
  • Musk said that ‘it will look like a truck’.
    • I take this as he is not planning an overly different design because it’s electric. He mentioned that he likes the design of the old Bronco.

In order to run our performance model, we had to turn the above description into a set of specific assumptions. A brief discussion of some of the more pertinent assumptions follows below.

Battery size: 200 kWh with weight reduced 5% for further improvements between now and when the pickup is released by Tesla.

Motor size: We used two Model 3 performance rear motors @ 300 HP each for a total of 600 HP

Size and Aero Drag: This should be simple right? It’s a “big” truck according to Musk, but big is a relative term. We used the F150 Raptor for our frontal area calculations. One could argue we picked too small. We’ve seen renderings of the Tesla pick up with an F150 in its bed. So, yes, I suppose we picked one too small but everything’s a compromise. Bigger just means more aero drag and drag force goes up with the velocity squared. More drag=bigger battery, so Raptor size seemed a good compromise.

Cd: We used the same as the Tesla semi=.36 since the shape in the renderings is similar to the Tesla semitruck. Also, Chrysler 1500 Regular Cab 4×2 has a drag coefficient of 0.360.

Ford F150 Raptor frontal area used in drag calcs.-34 ft2 frontal area.

Weight: This was a tough one. We started with Raptor weight, took out the engine and transmission then added 200 kWh of battery. For battery weight, we used the density of the Model 3 battery pack and reduced it another 5% for improvements between now and when the pickup is released. Model 3 pack is 13.1 #/kwh. That put our 200-kWh battery at 2490# and the total curb weight at 7640# for the Tesla pickup. As a crude comparison, two Model S P100D’s weigh just shy of 10,000 pounds. One could argue we did not pull enough weight out of the Raptor, but on the other hand the Raptor is 1000# lighter than an F250 w/Power stroke diesel. Therefore, we rounded up from 7640# to 8000# for the Tesla pickup. So we are 2000# lighter than two Tesla P100D’s and a tad heavier than a Raptor (minus engine and transmission plus 200-kWh battery).

Tires: We used raptor tires= BFG 315/70 R17 All Terrain T/A K02 tires with 604 revs per mile. For a rolling resistance, we used .0126 coefficient. We made an effort to go on the high side with rolling resistance since the Raptor has a fairly aggressive tread. For comparison, a typical low rolling resistance class 8 semitruck tire can be as low as .006 coefficient. We use .011 for the 19” model 3 tires. We bumped that number up by another 15% to get the RR coefficient for the Tesla pickup truck. Perhaps a touch high, but we had to start somewhere.

Gear Ratios: Once we had tire size we could size the gear ratios based on an assumption of max vehicle speed and max motor RPM. Gear ratios selected have a big influence on the 0-60-mph times. We ended up with a 15-to-1 gear ratio with a vehicle top speed of 110 mph, so we are slightly lower than the semi gear ratio but quite a bit higher than the sedans. Also, we used the same gear ratio in both front and back … probably not correct, but good enough for this stage of the game.

There are quite a few more assumptions that go into the model. A full list is presented below.

List of input parameters

Input parameter values

What do you think of the results. 200 kWh “feels right” to us. A 0-60-mph time faster than any other pickup on the street and 380 miles range is good.

Hmm … sounds expensive!!

How much money do you have?

Let us know if you have better assumptions or spot an error in the ones we have listed. We will keep your suggestions in mind for any future model refinements.

Thanks for reading.

George and Keith

Source: Electric Vehicle News

Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Invest In 5-Minute Battery Charge Startup Enevate

Extreme fast charging is promised.

Alliance Ventures, the strategic venture capital arm of Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance, has participated in the latest round of funding in Enevate Corporation, a battery start-up based in Irvine, California.

The Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance is just another high-profile investor – right after LG Chem in October – which makes us think that Enevate really has something feasible in the works.

Enevate promises that its silicon-dominant lithium-ion cells combines several advantages:

  • extreme fast-charging capabilities (can be charged to 75% capacity in five minutes)
  • high energy density for long-range EVs (around 250-300 Wh/kg)
  • can also safely charge and discharge down to -40°C and capture more energy during regenerative braking
  • low cost
  • improved safety

Enevate intends to licenses its silicon-dominant HD-Energy Technology to battery and car manufacturers that will launch volume production.

The list of investors already includes: Mission Ventures, Draper Fisher Jurvetson, Tsing Capital, Infinite Potential Technologies, Presidio Ventures – a Sumitomo Corporation company, CEC Capital, Samsung, Lenovo, LG Chem, and the Alliance (Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi).

Francois Dossa, Alliance Global Vice President, Ventures and Open Innovation, said:

“We are pleased to participate in Enevate’s latest funding round. This strategic investment allows us to support the development of Enevate proprietary cutting edge electrode technology. Continued development in this critical field will help us accelerate the electrification of our vehicles.”

Enevate President and CEO Robert A. Rango said:

“We share the common goal of making electric vehicles easier to use and adopt in mass markets. We look forward to our strategic partnership with Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi, as they are a global leader in electric vehicles and they understand the market needs of EV consumers worldwide.”

Bonus video: LG Chem has participated in Enevate’s recent funding

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Source: Electric Vehicle News

Panasonic CEO Says Solid-State Batteries Aren’t Ready For Primetime

Solid-state batteries maybe in the 2030s?

Panasonic is one of the leading automotive lithium-ion battery manufacturers so it’s interesting to hear where the Japanese company stands on the introduction of solid-state batteries.

According to Tom Gebhardt – the CEO of Panasonic North America – solid-state batteries are at least a decade away from average/mainstream electric vehicles.

In other words, Panasonic does not exclude solid-state batteries and maybe there will be even some cars with such batteries in the next several years, but not the series-produced models.

Gebhardt anticipates that batteries will get incremental improvements instead of major transformative change.

We should add though that, in general, the big companies and market leaders are the last who’d like to see a major breakthrough, because it could potentially harm their businesses.

Source: Business Insider

Source: Electric Vehicle News

Let’s Take A Close Look At How An Electric Car Works


There are many reasons why Tesla has taken the automotive world by storm. Of course, one big reason is that Elon Musk decided to make his car company an electric car company. And electric cars have inherent advantages over their internal combustion engine (ICE) counterparts.

*This article comes to us courtesy of EVANNEX (which also makes aftermarket Tesla accessories). Authored by Matt Pressman. The opinions expressed in these articles are not necessarily our own at InsideEVs.

Above: A look at the ludicrously-quick Tesla Model S P100D (Image: Tesla)

Electric cars not only create less pollution than gas-powered cars, but they often outperform ICE cars off the line. For example, a Tesla Model S P100DL has a mind-blowing 0 to 60 MPH time of 2.28 seconds, arguably the quickest production car available for sale today.

That said, do you know the basics of how an EV works? If not, don’t fret — The Zebra has you covered. The auto insurance experts examined how electric cars work and note, “When Nikola Tesla invented the alternating current motor in 1887, he paved the way for the [advent] of the electric vehicle more than a century later.”

Above: The BMW i3 at a public charger (Source: The Zebra)

Fast forward and EVs could make gas- and diesel-powered vehicles obsolete by the year 2025, “effectively ending the reign of the internal combustion engine.” Gaining traction, “acceptance of electric vehicles into car culture has already begun, with the Tesla Model S winning the Motor Trend Car of the Year in 2013.” Then, in 2017, the all-electric Chevy Bolt went on to win Motor Trend Car of the Year.

Furthermore, “Understanding how an electric vehicle works is actually much simpler than understanding how a gas- or diesel-powered car works.” From learning the difference between alternating and direct current to making sense of regenerative braking — this animated infographic can be a handy tool to gain insight into how an electric car works…


Electric Car


Source: The Zebra via Learn EngineeringAddOhmsFleetcarma

*Editor’s Note: EVANNEX, which also sells aftermarket gear for Teslas, has kindly allowed us to share some of its content with our readers, free of charge. Our thanks go out to EVANNEX. Check out the site here.

Source: Electric Vehicle News

Dutch Plug-In Electric Car Market Surges 147% In October 2018

An explosion of sales ahead of a tax change.

Plug-in car sales in the Netherlands are growing this year so quickly that it’s hard to find a faster-expanding market.

In October, some 2,058 plug-ins were sold, which is 147% more than a year ago at a high 6.8% market share.

So far this year, more than 17,000 plug-ins were sold in the country – almost 150% more than in 2017 at this point. One of the biggest reasons is the upcoming change in tax rates for expensive all-electric cars:

  • Current BEV BIK tax: 4% for full price
  • From January 1, 2019: 4% tax will be applied only to the amount of up to €50,000. The amount above €50,000 will be taxed 22%

Plug-in electric car sales in the Netherlands – October 2018

Tesla controls 33% of the market as the Model S and Model X are the #1 and #3 best selling EVs.

Also, the second-generation Nissan LEAF and new Jaguar I-PACE are noting strong results – 360 and 209 respectively in October.

Source: EV Sales Blog

Source: Electric Vehicle News

New LSIS high-voltage DC relays feature arc extinguishing structure

Sponsored by LSIS 

LSIS was established in 1974 and spun off from the LG Group in 2003. The company business focus is on green energy electric power equipment and automation. LSIS has led the Korean electric power equipment market for the last 40 years and with the expansion of the renewable energy market, the company’s particular focus is on DC device commercialization for the solar and electric vehicle markets.

HVDC Relays are used to supply and cut off the DC power, by opening and closing contacts by an actuator. Arcing that occurs when the DC power is cut off may cause damage to the contacts and surrounding components, so the arc should be extinguished as quickly as possible in the desired direction. The LSIS HVDC Relay is a product of power field technology and know-how gained over the last 40 years. It has excellent electrical durability, compact size, with low noise and features a permanent magnet and hydrogen inside for optimal arc extinguishing.

HVDC Relay in Electric Vehicles (GER series)
LSIS’ HVDC Relay came to the market for the first time in electric vehicles (HEV, PHEV, EV). Now they are mass produced to keep up with demand from well renowned global automobile manufacturers, who have accumulated trust in LSIS’ products. The HVDC Relay, applied to an electric vehicle, is installed between the vehicle battery and the inverter to cut off the charge and to discharge the DC power of the battery. It is also used between the external charger and the vehicle battery. Applied products are from the general electric relay (GER) series with a rated voltage of DC 450 V and rated current 10 A ~ 400 A.


GER series


Electric vehicle application system


HVDC Relay expanding high voltage application (GPR-M, GPR-H series)
LSIS has been developing mass production of their GPR-M (DC 1000 V class) and GPR-H (DC 1500 V class) series. Generally, as the rated voltage increases, the size of the product must be increased to ensure insulation. However, the GPR-M (1000 V) series is implemented in the same size as the GER (DC 450 V) series, thus improving the customer’s space utilization. The GPR-M and GPR-H series are equipped with the same hydrogen barrier as the GER series.

As the battery capacity of the vehicle increases, the rated voltage is increased and the external charge is expanded. Therefore, it is required to monitor the increase of the DC relay voltage and the On/Off of the contact point.

GPR-M series has a rated voltage of DC 1000 V, 10 A ~ 400 A. The GPR-M400 can be used to check contact On/Off by monitoring the auxiliary contact. These products are all UL, IEC, CCC certified.

GPR-H series has a rated voltage of DC 1500 V, 500 A and an auxiliary contact. They are all UL and IEC certified. In addition, an advantage is that the GPR-H series can be used in a system in which bi-directional blocking, such as reverse blocking or charge / discharge of a system can occur, by applying a bi-directional magnet arc extinguishing structure.

Demand for the LSIS HVDC Relay is expected to increase exponentially with the continued global trend of expansion of renewable energy. The rapid charger for an electric car switches the AC to DC to supply electricity to the vehicle and the HVDC relay is used to supply and cut off the power. ESS, a system for storing electricity, uses a HVDC Relay between the battery and PCS. The HVDC Relay is used for On/Off of solar modules in PV systems.

Based on its achievements in DC 450 V electric vehicles, LSIS will continue to commercialize HVDC relays to DC 1000 V and DC 1500 V for electric vehicles and chargers and will continue as a leader in the renewable energy market.

For more information on LSIS HVDC Relay and Contactors, click here.



Source: Electric Vehicles Magazine

Tesla confirms Model 3 is getting a CCS plug in Europe, adapter coming for Model S and Model X

After years of speculation, Tesla finally confirmed today that Model 3 is getting a CCS Combo 2 plug in Europe and an adapter is coming for Model S and Model X. more…

The post Tesla confirms Model 3 is getting a CCS plug in Europe, adapter coming for Model S and Model X appeared first on Electrek.

Source: Charge Forward