Would You Rather Transition To Electric Or Burn Gas From Saudi Arabia?

YOUR CHOICE: DRIVE ELECTRIC OR GUZZLE GAS FROM SAUDI ARABIA

If there was ever a time to reconsider your gasmobile, it’s now. According to Paul Rauber (via Sierra Club), “The grisly apparent murder of Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi embassy in Istanbul by a hit squad linked to Saudi crown prince Mohammad bin Salman has led many to try to distance themselves from the autocratic kingdom. That will not be easy for U.S. drivers of fossil fuel vehicles, however, because Saudi Arabia is still a major supplier of oil to the United States.”

*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: The transition to electric vehicles can reduce our dependence on Saudi oil (Image: Tesla Owner)

After all, “Saudi Arabia remains second only to Canada among the top suppliers of oil to the United States. The amount of Saudi oil entering California is particularly striking [see chart below]… Will qualms about supporting the Saudi regime finally drive people to go electric?”

Above: In 2017, Saudi Arabia accounted for nearly a third of all imported oil to California (Source: Sierra Club via California Energy Commission)

The former CEO and chairman of Sierra Club, Carl Pope, makes precisely this point in Salon’s recent article, It’s all about oil: The lessons we’re missing from Jamal Khashoggi’s murder. Pope writes, “Embracing the rapid electrification of transportation, and replacing oil still used in the power sector, will slash both dependence on oil and the price paid for the crude we still use.”

Above: Saudi Arabia’s Mohammad bin Salman has been tied to the disturbing, murky events surrounding Jamal Khashoggi (Image: Wikipedia Commons)

He elaborates, “The difference between the ambitious 20 percent share of vehicle miles that ABI expects to be electrified by 2030 and the modest 3 percent that OPEC recently forecast is a demand drop of 7.5 million barrels a day, equivalent to three-quarters of Saudi Arabia’s entire production. Add residual and inefficient use of oil to generate power and you could replace the [Saudi] kingdom’s entire production.”

Above: Paul Sankey of Mizuho Securities discusses how the “Tesla effect” could reduce the globe’s reliance on the oil sector (Youtube: CNBC)

Considering the choice between supporting Saudi oil and moving in a new direction, Pope writes, “it’s clear that the costs of a rapid transition to electric transportation and renewable power is a much cheaper – and safer – deal.” He concludes, “The world can do without Saudi oil – but only once it gets serious about electrifying transportation.”

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Source: Sierra ClubSalon

*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

Bjørn Nyland Takes First Look At Audi e-tron: Video

Audi e-tron seems like a very practical electric car.

Bjørn Nyland recently had his first opportunity to spend some time with the Audi e-tron. It was not yet a test drive, but a quick stationary overview and comparison to the Jaguar I-PACE and Tesla Model X (or even Tesla Model S).

First impressions are very positive as e-tron turns out to be a well-designed, solid EV. It’s large, spacious (besides the fast that the middle seat has compromised legroom), with a huge trunk (little too high of a loading height) and 2nd largest front trunk (after Tesla).

Audi did its homework with charging (DC up to 150 kW) and AC up to 22 kW (3-phase), as well as an optional additional AC charging inlet on the passenger side. The charging inlet also doesn’t have those cover caps. The e-tron still will fall short of the Tesla Supercharging network until IONITY and Electrify America expand networks, but the on-board charger is way more capable than in the case of I-PACE (7.4 kW).

Audi e-tron can tow a lot more than the I-PACE (750 kg), but slightly less than Tesla Model X (1,800 kg ve 2,250 kg). However, the e-tron can be equipped with roof racks. There is also an easy system to fold the back seats from the trunk or fold the middle seat for things like skis. Overall, the Tesla Model X seems to be more spacious inside though.

Audi brings a lot of features that Tesla lacks like a 3D view of the car, paddles for regenerative braking settings, optional cameras instead of side mirrors, illuminated seatbelt latches, headlight washers, seats with massage, etc. Navigation / infotainment is solid (though not as good as in the case of Tesla), with a cool keyboard on the lower touch screen for typing destination and an instrument cluster with navigation behind the wheel.

Surprisingly Bjørn noticed that materials in the e-tron could be better (here he gives the advantage to I-PACE and Tesla).

Overall, Audi e-tron wins the practicality award, but Bjørn will stick with Tesla as it has stronger performance (speed, acceleration), towing capability, space, Supercharging network and remains better fit for his driving profile.

Audi e-tron specs:

  • 0-60 mph in 5.5 seconds or 0-100 km/h  in 5.7 seconds
  • Top speed – 124 mph
  • over 400 km (250 miles) expected under WLTP test cycle
  • 95 kWh battery (36 cell modules, each module is equipped with 12 pouch cells, nominal voltage of 396 volts)
  • battery pack weight: 700 kilograms (1543.2 lb)
  • dual-motor all-wheel drive – up to 300 kW and 664 Nm in S mode (boost) or up to 265 kW and 561 Nm in D mode. Front motor is 135 kW, the rear is 165 kW (S mode).
  • Maximum tow rating – 1,800 kg (4,000 pounds) when properly equipped
  • 9.6 kW on-board charger (240 V, 40 A) in U.S. and 11 kW or 22 kW three-phase in Europe
  • DC fast charging up to 150 kW: 0-80% in 30 minutes


Source: Electric Vehicle News

Mercedes-Benz is open to working with Tesla again, says Daimler CEO

Daimler, Mercedes-Benz’s parent company, was once very close to Tesla and Elon Musk even said that the German automaker “saved” the startup with its investment back in 2009.

They have since grown apart as Tesla became a disruptor in the premium car space and Mercedes-Benz wants to go electric with its own EQ subbrand.

But Daimler CEO now says that they are still open to working with Tesla again. more…

The post Mercedes-Benz is open to working with Tesla again, says Daimler CEO appeared first on Electrek.


Source: Charge Forward

Tesla Model 3 Performance (With Price Cut) Compared To BMW M3

How does the electric Tesla stack up against one of the best high-performance gas sedans?

For every vehicle that even remotely wants to call its self a performance machine, it’s always going to be compared with the ultimate performance sedan: the BMW M3. After all, the M3 is one of the best high-performance machines money can buy and the BMW M3 has held that title for several decades.

However, with the advent of the Tesla Model 3 Performance, the M3 may no longer be the only option if you’d like to go with a high-performance sedan for your daily driver.

Below, you will see a chart by SacEV that gives us a rough idea on how these two stacks up against each other. While some of our readers will bring out the torches and pitchforks over this item, the comparison shown below isn’t fair to the BMW M3. After all, the outgoing BMW M3 is a vehicle that was envisioned and released almost 5 years ago. And that, in the automotive world, is considered ancient history.

However, the comparison does paint a pretty good picture on how an electric mid-size sedan stacks up against this ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) performance powerhouse. Clearly, the Model 3 is a newer car and sheer data thrown around doesn’t paint a complete picture. But, overall, it provides us with a solid look at where the world of mid-size performance machines is headed. And with that recent price drop, the Model 3 Performance with standard Upgrade Package now appears even more enticing.

The outgoing generation BMW M3 is powered by a 3.0 liter BMW TwinPower Turbo engine. It delivers 425 horsepower and 486lb-ft of torque. The engine is mated to a 7-Speed DCT (Dual Clutch Transmission) system, allowing for speedy gear changes and impressive power delivery. The M3 can sprint from 0-60mph (0-97km/h) in just 3.9 seconds with some journalists even achieving even lower acceleration times. Overall, the M3 is the benchmark in its price category, as this is one of the best handling cars that money can buy.

The Tesla Model 3 Performance is what most consider a truly electric performance machine. It’s powered by two electric motors, featuring a Dual Electric Motor setup, allowing the Model 3 to sprint from 0-60mph (0-97km/h) in 3.3 seconds. The battery pack will afford the owner with a 310-mile range and the Model 3 will make things interesting both on and off the track.

For the Model 3 Performance, the true test will come once the Bavarian carmaker releases the new BMW G80 M3, slated for a 2020 reveal. However, Tesla is one of the most compelling arguments for a small and nimble battery-powered high-performance machine. And with potential upgrades, it could well be a worthy competitor even for the new generation of the ultimate driving machine later on. Maybe in a few years, we’ll get to crown a new, electric king of performance driving.

That being said, we can’t wait for the Bavarian answer to everything Tesla. Let’s hope it comes soon in the form of a high-performance electric Bimmer.

Tesla Model 3 Performance

7 photos
Tesla Model 3 Performance
Tesla Model 3 Performance
Tesla Model 3 Performance
Tesla Model 3 Performance - Midnight Silver Tarmac Motion
Tesla Model 3 Performance - Dual Motor Badge
Tesla Model 3 Performance

 


Source: Electric Vehicle News

Tesla Roadster prototype makes rare appearance to inspire young car designers

The Tesla next-generation Roadster prototype only had a few public outings since its unveiling a year ago.

This weekend it made one of those rare public appearances at the Art Center to inspire young car designers. more…

The post Tesla Roadster prototype makes rare appearance to inspire young car designers appeared first on Electrek.


Source: Charge Forward

Hyundai Kona Electric Delayed In UK To August 2019?

Tesla Model 3 will perhaps arrive in the UK sooner than the Hyundai Kona Electric?

An InsideEVs reader sent us a note about the Hyundai Kona Electric delivery guidance in the UK, which significantly changed in the past few weeks (orders book opened on August 2).

Originally, the 39.2 kWh battery version was shown as ready for immediate delivery, while the 64 kWh battery version was scheduled for February 2019. But now it seems that deliveries are expected in August 2019!

That’s long enough to get the Tesla Model 3 in mid-2019 (production hell huh?) to the UK before the Kona Electric.

There could be two reasons for the August 2019 shift. The first is that deliveries are delayed, while the second one is that the first pilot quota was sold out and the next one is scheduled for August 2019.

Prices in the UK:

  • 39.2 kWh version from £29,495 (excluding Plug In Car Grant)
  • 64 kWh version from £36,295 (not including Plug In Car Grant)

Hat Tip to Jon!!!


Source: Electric Vehicle News

How Formula E’s New Era Has Shaken Up The Order

Pre-season testing for Formula E’s fifth season took place at Valencia last week. Not only did we get a good look at the new Gen2 cars in public action for the first time, but suggestions pointed to a possible shake-up in the competitive order.

You can’t read anything into testing”, “Valencia isn’t a street track”, “old or new tyres”, “power modes”, “track limits” – if it weren’t for the series-specific terms, one could have assumed that the Formula 1 paddock had stopped off at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo for a few days of extra testing before heading to the United States Grand Prix and not Formula E.

With the new Gen2 cars – LED-halo-shod, looking gorgeous and sounding ever more like jets as their massive aerokits catch the wind – and their technology capable of lasting a whole race distance came an air of secrecy.

But what was clear – despite the firm understanding that any analysis of anything that happened at Valencia last week was an utter hiding to nothing – is that many paddock sages think the field has converged ahead of FE’s fifth season. And if that proves to be the case when the racing gets under way in December, that is excellent news for the championship.

Top testing times

1 Antonio Felix da Costa BMW Andretti 1m16.977s
2 Jean-Eric Vergne DS Techeetah 1m17.342s
3 Jerome D’Ambrosio Mahindra Racing 1m17.431s
4 Sebastien Buemi Nissan e.dams 1m17.473s
5 Lucas di Grassi Audi 1m17.535s
6 Felipe Massa Venturi 1m17.696s
7 Jose Maria Lopez Dragon 1m17.830s
8 Mitch Evans Jaguar Racing 1m17.864s
9 Stoffel Vandoorne HWA 1m18.032s
10 Robin Frijns Virgin Racing  1m18.088s
11 Tom Dillmann NIO 1m18.217s

Taking a look at the fastest overall times, it appears as if BMW Andretti comprehensively won the testing war – even if plenty were quick to note that this was as phony as ever. Not only did Antonio Felix da Costa take the fastest overall time of the test, but the squad, which is now BMW’s works FE entry with the Andretti crew running the operations team, topped all three days of running. Alexander Sims was quickest on days two and three.

Alexander Sims BMW I Andretti Motorsports, BMW iFE.18

Alexander Sims BMW I Andretti Motorsports, BMW iFE.18

Photo by: Alastair Staley / LAT Images

Da Costa even went fastest in the wet morning session on Friday. So, BMW looks quick in all conditions – impressive stuff given Andretti finished last in the season-four standings. One observer from a rival squad reckoned BMW looks “mighty”.

It’s no wonder the team feels pleased – and deservedly so.

“We honestly came here with no expectations,” says team boss Roger Griffiths.

“It was quite a pleasant surprise. We didn’t go out there to set a lap time [early on], we had a test programme – long runs, short-runs, stuff with different power levels. So, we did that and it wasn’t like we said ‘OK, we’re just going to for it’. I kept drilling into the drivers – ‘You have to leave some margin because we have no spares’. When we repeated it one-three [in the order] on Tuesday afternoon I said, ‘OK, perhaps, this is real’.”

Dig into the fastest average race times – particularly fraught with peril this year given the huge increase in parameters that can influence times beyond powertrain efficiency (tyres that now degrade, different power levels and the new attack mode race format to access them, weather conditions – to name but a few) – and the competitive order gets more shaken-up.

Average pace on longest runs

1 NIO 27 laps 1m23.499s
2 Audi 33 laps 1m24.015s
3 BMW 28 laps 1m24.161s
4 Mahindra 12 laps 1m24.371s
5 Virgin 28 laps 1m24.855s
6 HWA 16 laps 1m25.201s
7 Nissan 21 laps 1m25.222s
8 Jaguar 32 laps 1m25.348s
9 Venturi 19 laps 1m25.357s
10 DS Techeetah 23 laps 1m25.415s
11 Dragon 13 laps 1m32.194s*

*Run consisted of slow laps followed by flying efforts

Valencia is absolutely not an FE street-track. The chicane installed three-quarters of the way down the circuit’s main straight was tighter and more acute than most on the calendar – so much so that as well as Griffiths, several team bosses immediately ordered their drivers to take absolutely no chances with the walls and risk damaging the cars with spare parts limited at this stage of the season.

Jérôme d'Ambrosio, Mahindra Racing, M5 Electro, Mitch Evans, Panasonic Jaguar Racing, Jaguar I-Type 3

Jérôme d’Ambrosio, Mahindra Racing, M5 Electro, Mitch Evans, Panasonic Jaguar Racing, Jaguar I-Type 3

Photo by: Andrew Ferraro / LAT Images

The drivers didn’t like it – and evidence of its lack of suitability was evidenced by the worn (non-existent) grass at the exit by the end of the week as they had to put wheels over the line to straighten up and hit the power – but it wasn’t changing.

Track limits were also widely abused to gain lap time, which is fair enough, it is a test and a tedious subject to drone on about in any case. Then there was the weather interfering on the final day, and even though it did dry out for Friday afternoon, a plague of red flags descended. The running on day two was also compromised due to a ‘race’ simulation (more on that later), which ate into the time available to conduct long runs. Plus there were the reliability dramas that struck many of the teams.

So, what can we deduce? With an average new FE race length – 45 minutes plus one lap – thought to be in the region of 34 laps at Valencia, only two squads got close to that: Audi and Jaguar. But NIO, BMW and Virgin Racing were also not too far off and it is NIO’s run on day one – with only one lap featuring the higher 225kW mode – that really stands out. Mahindra and HWA appear to be in the ballpark, but their stints were over a much shorter distance.

Best average long runs

1 NIO 27 laps 1m23.499s
2 Audi 29 laps 1m23.900s
3 Mahindra 11 laps 1m23.939s*
4 DS Techeetah 21 laps 1m23.971s
5 Venturi 18 laps 1m23.972*
6 HWA 15 laps 1m23.990s*
7 BMW 28 laps 1m24.161s
8 Jaguar 28 laps 1m24.355s
9 Virgin 26 laps 1m24.502s
10 Nissan 17 laps 1m24.778s
11 Dragon 12 laps 1m25.688s

*Same run as previous table with outliers removed

Now the interesting part. On Friday afternoon – after the track had dried – Audi, DS Techeetah, BMW and Virgin all attempted race stints. Factoring these runs into the best average run times, there are several things to note.

First, Lucas di Grassi’s pace did not improve much compared to his mammoth 33-lap run on the morning of day two, which gives us an indication that Audi does not lose pace approaching the end of a full race distance. Second, over 21 laps, DS Techeetah is right with Audi (Andre Lotterer’s average here was much faster than over the 23 laps he did first on Friday afternoon), with BMW just a fraction behind based on Sims’s 28-lap run.

Engineer of Sam Bird, Envision Virgin Racing, Audi e-tron FE05

Engineer of Sam Bird, Envision Virgin Racing, Audi e-tron FE05

Photo by: Dom Romney / LAT Images

Virgin, which struggled with setting up its Audi-powered cars during the test, was further behind – although taking a look at Sam Bird’s run that was just two laps shorter than Robin Frijns’s longest stint for the team all week, reveals more impressive pace. Bird did an 18-lap stint at 1m24.200s on Wednesday morning, but this was over a considerably shorter distance.

Jaguar is in this region too, with Mitch Evans’s time over 29 laps – once a slow first tour has been removed – the best it achieved over long distances in the test.

Nissan appears to be slightly further back based on these calculations, although Sebastien Buemi went faster over 17 laps compared to Oliver Rowland over 21 on the final afternoon. At the bottom end, Dragon’s longest run of the week consisted of Antonio Fuoco alternating between backing off and then setting a flying lap, with Jose Maria Lopez’s quickest average over 12 laps containing wildly fluctuating times.

With BMW topping the outright pace charts and being right in there on the long-run averages, Audi – last season’s best package thanks to the efficiency advantage it enjoyed over its rivals – thinks its fellow German manufacturer is the team to beat.

“I would say there’s been a little bit of convergence in that we made a big step from season three to season four and we’ve made a step from season four to season five, but I think everybody has made a fair old jump forward,” said Audi team principal Allan McNish.

Allan McNish, Team Principal, Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler, talks with Sylvain Filippi, Managing Director & CTO, Virgin Racing

Allan McNish, Team Principal, Audi Sport Abt Schaeffler, talks with Sylvain Filippi, Managing Director & CTO, Virgin Racing

Photo by: Alastair Staley / LAT Images

“Overall, if I take a global view, BMW have made a big step – that’s fact. They’re quick at all occasions – that’s the way that I look at them, short-run, long-run, medium run – they seem to be quite quick. For me right now, BMW is the one that we look at and they’re the one we’re going to be chasing as a principal point.”

Di Grassi has a similar view. Put simply, he reckons Audi’s advantage is gone. “The car is quite good,” says the 2016/17 champion. “The drivetrain is maybe the top three or four, but it’s not as good as last year, the difference [over the opposition].

“Last year we had a good advantage, especially in the second half of the season. But this year, it’s going to be super close – everybody’s upped their game.”

As can be seen in the adjusted averages – and in the Wednesday non-race ‘race’ – DS Techeetah is in the mix with BMW and Audi. Last season’s runner-up in the teams’ standings, which ran Jean-Eric Vergne to the drivers’ championship, is now enjoying the vast resources of a manufacturer. It looks set for another strong campaign.

“I don’t think it’s going to change dramatically from last year,” says team boss Mark Preston regarding the efficiency-vs-pace outlook. “Most of the manufacturers have got quite close to the peaks anyway, but there’s always incremental gains – I’m sure we’re making incremental gains in the background, and they definitely won’t disappear, they’ll keep coming all the time.”

Oliver Turvey, NIO Formula E Team, NIO Sport 004

Oliver Turvey, NIO Formula E Team, NIO Sport 004

Photo by: Dom Romney / LAT Images

Looking at their long-run pace, NIO and Venturi could well spring surprises. NIO flattered to deceive in season four after topping the fastest times in testing. It’s gone the other way this year with the slowest outright time, but Tom Dillmann’s day-one afternoon race run comfortably tops the averages. NIO only did one race run per driver, with Dillmann’s effort also being its best average – and Oliver Turvey down to a 1m24.144s over 22 laps also on Tuesday afternoon. So, if NIO can reach the pace in qualifying, Dillmann and Turvey should be right in there come the races.

“There’s a good degree of confidence,” says team principal Gerry Hughes. “[But] we only know where we are. There’s no specific objective different from [testing] last year.”

Venturi’s longest run is on the short side for a confident prediction that it will be in the mix, but given the team had reliability battles in Spain – as did its customer outfit HWA – it gets the benefit of the doubt. Plus, the team was another picked out by many as having made a big improvement from last season. Its best run remained Edoardo Mortara’s long stint on Tuesday morning, but remove a slow outlier on lap two and he improves massively to a 1m23.972s.

Nissan e.dams is in turmoil thanks to its driver crisis. With two crucial days lost at Valencia, it also did not reach the upper echelons of long-run stints. But Buemi did get towards the sharp end in outright pace and FE’s most successful team (from its Renault days) should not be underestimated.

As the second lowest manufacturer in the best-averages table, Jaguar could be in trouble. It did complete a race run straight off the bat with Nelson Piquet Jr on day one, but the average pace of that stint was well behind Audi’s similar effort, although things improve considerably looking at the adjusted table.

Mitch Evans, Panasonic Jaguar Racing, Jaguar I-Type 3 with the new hyper boost LED lights on the halo

Mitch Evans, Panasonic Jaguar Racing, Jaguar I-Type 3 with the new hyper boost LED lights on the halo

Photo by: Alastair Staley / LAT Images

But Jaguar did also complete the most laps of any team on 442, despite Mitch Evans losing two hours on the first morning to a battery issue. Given the factors that can influence FE testing times, this is another place where firm conclusions cannot be drawn for now.

HWA, Mahindra and Dragon are the big unknowns as they simply did not complete sufficiently long runs to allow conclusions, despite their high places in the tables. At Mahindra, team boss Dilbagh Gill says the squad is “hitting our marks”, while Dragon – the only team yet to reveal its full driver line-up and 2018/19 livery – did not do a run above 13 laps.

On the final afternoon, Formula 2 racers Maximilian Gunther and Fuoco each completed a series of flying laps on full power. If that was a shootout for the final Dragon seat, Gunther’s best lap won it by 0.337s.

The ‘race that wasn’t a race’ was won by di Grassi. Given his prowess in the electric championship, that may not seem that remarkable, but the circumstances that produced FE’s first season-five chequered flag finish certainly were.

First of all, it wasn’t really a race. At the request of the teams, FE and the FIA allocated a slot on the day-two afternoon schedule to test the 45-minute-plus-one-lap distance and trial the attack-mode race format. Active sensor loops were added at Turn 5 to simulate the need for drivers to run off-line to access the Gen2 cars’ higher-power mode in races. The cars also lined up in single file in the pitlane – Sims emerged first to take pole – and went off one-by-one.

On lap one, Stoffel Vandoorne brought the full McLaren F1 experience to Valencia by stopping on track, and a few moments later Daniel Abt stuffed his Audi at the chicane on the main straight. Back to the pits they came, and the pack had to wait for nearly 45 minutes to allow Vandoorne’s car, which was declared ‘red’ (the electric systems still live – an FE first), to be recovered.

Stoffel Vandoorne, HWA Racelab, VFE-05

Stoffel Vandoorne, HWA Racelab, VFE-05

Photo by: Alastair Staley / LAT Images

When they got going again, Buemi led for a while before stopping early. A number of other cars pulled off and the real contenders were DS Techeetah’s Vergne and Lotterer, and di Grassi and Sims. By the end, just di Grassi and Sims were left scrapping it out and when Sims lost momentum coming out of the final corner battling high battery temperatures, the race went to the Audi driver.

Times for this session were deliberately not recorded – hence they are not factored into our average-run assessments.

When it came to testing the attack-mode format, McNish explained that “it’s [about] making sure it’s armed at the correct point, making sure you run over everything at the correct point, and then also being sure the software works as well. That’s the loops in the ground but it’s also the software in the car, and a few people struggled with that.”

Leaving Valencia, it does appear that the FE field has converged, with BMW, Audi and DS the likely frontrunners, and NIO and Venturi well up there too. There’s an understandable amount of paranoia over the new technology, but all teams are understood to have opted for the single-gear approach.

As qualifying pace will be as key as ever in FE in 2018/19, BMW should head into the championship full of confidence, but the indications suggest a close, competitive season is coming up.


Source: Electric Vehicle News

German Automakers Act Like Tesla And EV Transition Is A Surprise

GERMAN AUTOMAKERS ALARMED BY TRANSITION TO ELECTRIC CARS

While excitement grows for electric cars, questions remain. Patrick McGee writes (via Financial Times), “Can Germany survive the ‘iPhone moment’ for cars? The country’s profitable carmakers are being hit quicker than expected by the adoption of electric vehicles… some question whether Das Auto will survive such an industry transformation.”

*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: The success of Tesla is raising questions in Germany (Image: Car)

Right now, “If the market is betting on someone building the iPhone on wheels, it is Tesla.” It’s reported that, “In the US, Tesla outsold Mercedes and BMW in the passenger car category. Globally, Tesla deliveries including cars and SUVs were lower than both, but they were double that of Jaguar and almost 20,000 higher than Porsche, according to AID research.”

“It gives you a glimpse of the future — of what it will mean when Tesla can serve the German market,” says Mr Herger, author of Das Silicon Valley Mindset, a manual for traditional industries to innovate like start-ups. “And this was the quarter when all you heard about at Tesla was their production problems.”

Granted, German automakers “are likely to produce a record 16m cars this year… [but] it is based on a product, combustion engine cars, that could cease to exist within a single generation. The engineering skills that have set German cars apart from the pack are likely to lose importance relative to software and imported batteries. And its strengths, from engine knowhow to world-class factories, could turn into a weakness as the industry undergoes a radical shift.”

Looking ahead, “If the shift to electric happens quickly, production assets in Germany could turn into expensive liabilities.”

Above: Production of internal combustion engine cars differs from factories producing battery electric vehicles (Image: The Manufacturer)

“The whole frame of the car is different when you move from gasoline to electric,” says Sven Dharmani, global auto supply chain leader at EY. “Entire plants are going to become obsolete. The companies that make pistons and crankshafts are not going to provide the battery.”

In fact, “The threats facing the German car industry could be existential, according to Herbert Diess, chief executive of Volkswagen.” Deiss told German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung, “Such an industry can crash faster than many people realise… I see our chances of keeping the lead position at 50:50.”

In the US, “Elon Musk, the Tesla chief executive, is driven by grand ambitions to wean the world off a fossil fuel based economy… [whereas] the Germans are unveiling EVs to avoid breaking EU rules.” The results are striking: “Globally, not a single German EV model makes it on to the top 10 list dominated by Tesla, Nissan, and Chinese producer BYD.”

Viktor Irle, analyst at EV-Volumes, says the German strategy is to produce as many electrified and hybrid plug-in vehicles as are required by law— rather than desired.“It’s ‘compliance hell’ rather than ‘production hell’,” he says. “They don’t want to sell them; they have to sell them.”

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Above: Germany fights against EU emissions policy that encourages and expedites electric vehicle adoption (Youtube: France 24 English)

All this is happening against a backdrop where “Brussels recently launched a formal investigation into alleged collusion between the German carmakers, over a slow rollout of emissions technology… [and Audi’s] longtime chief executive Rupert Stadler was arrested for his alleged role in the diesel scandal in June. VW dismissed him this month.”

Inside the tumultuous auto sector, there appears to be a sea-change underway. According to Stefan Bratzel, director of the Centre of Automotive Management in Bergisch Gladbach, “For 100 years the automotive universe had established the rules of the game. Just a few people controlled the industry, especially the Germans. Now, the role of the German automotive industry is at risk.”

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Source: Financial Times

*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

VinFast Will Introduce Electric Cars And Buses In Vietnam

VinFast to bring electrification to Vietnam

VinFast is a new brand from Vietnam, which unveiled at the 2018 Paris Motor Show its first two conventional cars – the VinFast LUX A2.0 sedan, based on the BMW 5-Series and VinFast LUX SA2.0 SUV, based on the BMW X5. Vehicles were designed by Pininfarina.

The company licensed BMW platforms (previous generation) and turbocharged 2.0-liter I-4 engine to begin production in the middle of 2019 at its modern 335-hectare plant complex in Cat Hai, Hai Phong, northern Vietnam. Another model is to be an all-new, global small car, licensed from General Motors.

We would not bother to dicsuss those two cars, but according to the press , release VinFast is working hard to bring the first EVs to Vietnam.

In 2019 VinFast intends to unveil its all-electric car, which is currently developed by German’s EDAG and designed by Italdesign Giugiaro.

“Following its investment to bring electric mobility to Vietnam in 2018 with the launch of a range of eScooters, VinFast will unveil an all-new fully electric car in 2019. Design development is being undertaken by renowned Italian design house, Italdesign Giugiaro, while complete engineering development of the car will be led by Germany’s EDAG, one of the world’s largest independent engineering service providers. With sales starting in early 2020, it is likely to be the very first electric car on sale in Vietnam.”

At the same time company is gearing up for electric bus production, beginning from 2019 in cooperation with Siemens.

“In August 2018, VinFast signed two agreements to cooperate with Siemens for the development of a fully electric bus (eBus). The agreement specifically relates to electric motor manufacturing licences and the supply of components to support the production of the eBus in Vietnam. Together with the production of e-scooters and electric cars, VinFast’s eBus will not only help improve the environment but also contribute to the transformation of the urban public transport system in Vietnam.The agreements enable VinFast to establish a supply chain for the production of zero emissions public transport vehicles in Vietnam, contributing to the transformation and modernisation of the public transport sector in the country.”

Together with electric scooters, eScooter, launched in 2018, it seems that company aims for all kinds of EVs.

VinFast LUX A2.0

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VinFast LUX A2.0
VinFast LUX A2.0
VinFast LUX SA2.0
VinFast LUX SA2.0

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Source: Electric Vehicle News