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Take A Look At The Tesla Model 3 EV’s Debut In Beijing

tesla model 3 (3)

Tesla is giving Beijing a taste of its Model 3 as the latest EV vehicle from Elon Musk’s company made its debut at the 2018 Beijing Auto Show. This came ahead of the official launch of the Tesla Model 3 in China and also before the company receives full authority to produce the vehicle in the market.

This is not the first Tesla Model 3 in the country, of course. Rich private citizens have already started importing the vehicle from the US, which is not recommended given the many different specifications in terms of wattage and outputs in the vehicle. We do know that US and China do not share the same power capacities and even format.

Still, the vehicle debuting at the Beijing Auto Show is the first one that Tesla itself brought to the Asian giant. But while Tesla is already introducing the vehicle to the Chinese market, it won’t be seen in dealerships until next year, when it will have its official launch.

Reportedly, Tesla Model 3 will be available as an import from the US first much like the Model S and Model X. Tesla is working on domestically manufacturing the vehicles to save on cost and reduce the final price of the vehicle. Practically, this is a good move both for Tesla and the Chinese market. Logistic costs and import fees could double the cost of a vehicle that is essential in helping Chinese commuters reduce their carbon footprint.

Currently, Tesla’s import duties is at 25%. This effectively limits the company’s demand in the world’s largest automotive market, though reports pointed out that Tesla’s presence has grown significantly. To keep growing (it has the lead in foreign electric car sales in China), Tesla has to somehow convince the Chinese government to allow it to produce the vehicle domestically.

Elon Musk To Push Through With Tesla Model Y

tesla model y

Elon Musk’s Tesla is making the ambitious plan to commence production of its Model Y in November 2019. Reports from Reuters said that Musk is accepting preliminary bids for supplier contracts of the Tesla Model Y, which will be a more affordable version of the Model X.

The Model Y was first teased at Tesla’s Annual Shareholder meeting in 2017. That time, Musk said that the Model Y will be built on an entirely new platform. But the Tesla CEO recently admitted that feat was ambitious and the Model Y will instead be using the same architecture as the Model 3, Tesla’s latest production car.

If the production of the Model Y will continue, that will be in November 2019 at the Fremont factory in California. Two years after, the production will move to China.

This may sound all too exciting, but remember that Tesla is under fire now for its issues with the production of Model 3. What’s up with that, anyway? The sedan had 500,000 initial orders in refundable deposits in July last year. The company, however, failed to deliver the cars on time. There was an initial promise for these to be ready by November 2017, but that did not come into fruition.

Earlier this month, Tesla tried to convince investors and the general public that the production was getting better, doubling during the first quarter of 2018 and increasing to 5000 units per week in the second quarter.

As for the Tesla Model Y, the “ultimatum” is November 2019, which means that the company might skip the pre-production phase at all. We’re hoping these reports are false because safety is very important in these electric vehicles. A Model X crashed because of the Autopilot feature’s failure, so it makes no sense for Tesla to escalate the production of the Model Y when there are still clear issues with its previous model.

Peugeot Has No Plans For Dedicated EV

peugeot

Peugeot CEO Jean-Phillipe Imparato made a surprising claim recently when he said that the brand has no plans of creating a dedicated EV anytime soon. This statement was made at a time when every car manufacturer, from Kia to Ferrari, is working on EV concepts and dedicating a team to produce them faster.

Imparato is confident that Peugeot will reach its carbon dioxide emissions target for 2021. Car manufacturers in Europe are mandated to keep a check on emissions produced by their vehicles in an aim to lessen CO2 emissions by 2021. The Peugeot head said the brand does not need to launch an electric vehicle and take a hit to reach the target. To protect the operation of the French automaker, Imparato said there are plans to launch a mix of powertrains.

However, this does not mean that the company is anti-EV. While Imparato sees no need for a dedicated EV for now, he did say that he wants Peugeot to lead the way for electrification. By 2019, 8% of Peugeot’s model lineup will be electrified. By 2020, that number will be 50%. He believes that the transition to electrified vehicles should not be done in the future. It should be today.

Imparato is not closing Peugeot’s door on EV. He did say that he would want a dedicated EV for the brand in the coming 10 years. For now, though, what they can offer is a “modular platform” that will cover all markets—electric, hybrid, petrol, and diesel.

Peugeot’s clear plans should be trusted, considering that it reported a sales growth of 10.4% in the previous year. Its siblings, the Citroen and DS, reported negative growth. Imparato said the export of vehicles helped Peugeot grow exponentially. However, China and Germany and many other countries will ban Internal Combustion Engines by 2025. Let’s see how Peugeot will play through this.

Hyundai Kona Electric Showcases Powertrain Versatility

Hyundai Kona Electric (1)

The Hyundai Kona Electric was introduced last week at the New York Auto Show, marking another level of versatility that the brand is bringing to its US utility lineup.

The Kona Electric is a pure EV subcompact crossover that go an estimated 250 miles on a single charge. It’s part of the series of announcements that Hyundai made to introduce an all-new lineup. Last February, the South Korean automaker said that the redesigned Santa Fe will have a diesel option in 2019, which marks Hyundai’s first diesel in the US market. The fuel-powered Nexo will also continue to be around to build on the brand’s “hydrogen legacy.”

The Kona Electric will be rolled out to targeted markets only. Hyundai said that the EV subcompact crossover will be produced in Ulsan, Korea, and will be initially available in California. Later on, other states with California’s zero-emission vehicle regulations will follow the launch. The availability will start in the fourth quarter of 2018.

What the Kona EV brings to the table is “peace of mind” and “flexibility,” according to Hyundai Motor America COO Brian Smith. Why? The 250-mile range is father than the capability of EVs before the Kona EV. Previous EVs can only muster up around 100 or 150 miles.

The closest competitor of the Kona EV is the Chevy Bolt, a hatchback that has the capacity of 238 miles in a single charge. Though Tesla Model 3 has a 220-mile range, it is a sedan and does not fall under the same category as the Kona.

A lot of cross-shopping will happen, Smith claims, as customers who want EVs suddenly have the option of buying a CUV because it’s out in the market now. The 250-mile range will also allow many people to go two to three days without charging, and that’s a big factor to consider.

The Kona EV gets 19.2 cubic feet of rear cargo space, which is the same as the gasoline version of the crossover. Pricing details have not been announced yet.

2019 Jaguar I-Pace Giving Tesla A Run For Its Money

2019 jaguar i-pace (1)

Oh, there’s nothing much here except Jaguar revealed that its all-electric I-Pace is due to be released and distributed next year. That only means one thing: Tesla’s monopoly of the EV market is done and over. For years, whenever some rich dude wanted a cool, sexy, functional, and reliable electric vehicle, all he has to choose from are Tesla products. That’s about to change now.

If there’s anything we learned from Tesla regarding EVs it’s that an electric car must have a long driving range and the recharging of battery must be convenient. Now that luxury automakers like Jaguar dipped their well-engineered minds into the market, Tesla will have serious competitions in this market. The new 2019 Jaguar I-Pace is the first luxury EV to roll into distributorship.

Two e-Machines

According to reports, the I-Pace is going to be powered by two electric motors, or e-machines in Jaguar jargon. The first one is responsible for driving the front wheels and the second one will be driving the rear wheels through concentric drive transmissions. The I-Pace is a pure electric five-passenger luxury crossover SUV with a standard all-wheel drive.

Everything is developed in-house at Jaguar, including the permanent magnet motors, the battery concept and design, and the software that controls the powertrain and manages the battery. There’s no confirmation from the luxury automaker about the outputs for the I-Pace, but Patel confirmed that it will have an output of 400 horsepower and 516 pound-feet of torque. It will also have a range of 300 miles before a recharge is needed.

There are no details yet about the pricing, but Jaguar said that it will release the list on March 6, 2018, which isn’t really too far from where we are now. Once it goes on sale, the I-Pace will be offered in three trim levels: S, SE, and HSE. There’s, of course, a limited production First Edition version that will be priced higher than the actual production model.

Dyson Electric Car Prepares to Challenge Tesla

dyson electric cars coming up

A Dyson electric car is in the works. Last week, the company revealed its plan on rivaling major automakers in the electric vehicle (EV) market and poises itself as a challenger to the supremacy of Tesla in the segment.

Max Conze, the CEO of Dyson, revealed in an interview with Wired that they are gearing to enter into the car market. He said that they plan to launch their very first EV by 2020.

The move is a huge leap from the company that is known for producing home appliances, including the best vacuum cleaners in the market today. It could prove as a big challenge for them. However, Conze boldly stated that they are preparing to make their own auto all by themselves without the need for a partner.

Critics have expressed their concern over the decision of Dyson to tap the EV market, but the company claimed that they have the means to produce them. Then Conze added that making their own car platform will allow them to smoothly integrate their in-house technology with their vehicles.

Conze pointed out that through the utilization of their expertise with batteries, energy-efficient motors and air flow system to autos, they will significantly improve the existing electric range of EVs by 50 to 100 percent. It should be recalled that the Tesla Model S is capable of reaching 315 miles at full charge. The report noted that the company has hired 400 engineers for the project and has allotted £2 billion for the program.

Although Dyson already uses advanced artificial intelligence for their robot vacuums, they are not looking to make self-driving cars. Only basic semi-autonomous features like lane-keeping assistance will likely be installed in their future vehicles. Furthermore, Conze said they will not be focusing on building their own charging infrastructure as EVs with greater range don’t have to be recharged often.

Thunder Power Unwraps Electric SUV at Frankfurt Motor Show

thunder power suv (1)

Hong Kong-based electric car company Thunder Power came to the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show not only to update us about its Zagato-designed sedan EV, but also to unveil a new one—an electric SUV.

Willem Sham, the CEO of Thunder Power, revealed the Thunder Power SUV, which was designed in-house in Milan, Italy and uses the brand’s modular platform. It has an electric powertrain fitted, so the car can maximize its interior space and still maintain a low center of gravity.

To reduce drag time, the automaker said it tweaked the car’s aerodynamics. The company, however, is still tight-lipped about what the electric SUV has in store for us once it reached production.

On the outside, the electric SUV is attractive enough, minus the grille’s design. The interior is comfortable and there’s ample space on the cargo area, thanks to rear doors that open rearward. It also has a panoramic roof and a large digital screen that stretches across the dashboard.

But before the unveiling of the electric SUV, Thunder Power updated its audience that the designing and the possible production of the sedan is going well. In fact, a production-spec prototype was onstage with camouflage that resembles a topographic map. The sedan is reportedly undergoing testing for battery performance.

Sham revealed that the sedan EV will have a driving range of up to 650 kilometers on the NEDC cycle. He also announced a Launch Edition Coupe with only 488 examples available. The coupe will produce 654 horsepower on its electric powertrain. It will be paired with a four-wheel-drive system and uses a torque vectoring system.

The overall design of the Launch Edition Coupe will depend on the customer’s taste, but it will have an engraved plaque of the car’s serial number. The coupe will enter production soon, but deliveries will begin on the second quarter of 2019.

Smart Scraps Combustion Engine Production, To Go Full EV In 2019

smart vision EQ fortwo  smart vision EQ fortwo

By 2019, we will no longer see Smart vehicles with combustion engines, according to Smart CEO Annette Winkler. In the next three years, Smart will slowly move away from using combustion engines and will instead focus on designing and producing electric vehicles.

The move will start in Europe and North America with the Fortwo and Forfour in the forefront. The two models will be sold only with a full-electric drive in 2019. The Asian market and the rest of the world will follow “as soon as possible after.”

This is not the first time that an automaker is fully scrapping the production of combustion engines as more and more car manufacturers move towards an electrified future.

The EV Smarts, however, won’t have much of a range. The Fortwo’s current range is about 70 miles while the Forfour belongs on the same range. Winkler seemed to have thought about this move a lot, even the fact that the brand is only offering short-range EV cars.

For Smart, the pricing is more important than the range. To be able to have a longer range, the company would have to use bigger-capacity batteries and therefore, driving the prices up. Charging up the cars shouldn’t be a hassle at all since supermarkets and car parks will be fitted with fast charging stations.

The Smart CEO seems to know that not producing petrol engines means cutting off a big chunk of the market, but she’s taking it in stride. They have already “prepared” the factory and the dealers about the upcoming change in market reaction.

As you can remember, Smart was the first car to be designed especially for city use. It was also the first company to offer a customization and personalization packages in a cheap car. Do you often use your gadgets to change what’s on the dashboard? That’s Smart’s idea, too. It’s known to push boundaries, and as the first company to come up with an EV in Europe back in 2009, we’re sure Smart will do just fine.

Mercedes-Benz Concept EQ A Teased Ahead of Frankfurt Show

Mercedes-Benz Concept EQA

Mercedes-Benz Concept EQA

Can you still remember the Generation EQ concept by Mercedes-Benz that made its debut at last year’s Paris auto show? That signaled the German automaker’s commitment to finally introduce a fully electric lineup. It was set to preview on the new crossover model called the EQ C.

Mercedes’ latest EV concept, the EQ A, is going to the Frankfurt Auto Show. Surprisingly, though, the German brand has given us a taste of what’s to come.

The EQ A looks very similar to the Generation EQ concept shown last year. It has the same basic architecture—long hood, gaping front grille, and flared fenders. We can’t be sure about that front grille, though, since the teaser photos have been darkened to keep features secret until the motor show.

What we can derive from the darkened photos is that the new concept will have sharper headlights divided from the rest of the car’s grille and a standard hexagonal Mercedes-Benz family grille design language. The Generation EQ is being powered by an electric motor on each axle with a lithium-ion battery that has a range of 310 miles. Will we see the same one on the EQ A? We’ll have to wait for the motor show for that.

The German auto brand plans to use the EQ concept for its range of electronic vehicle lineup. Before 2020, Mercedes-Benz promised to come up with at least four electric-powered vehicles. It will also be fitted in the hybrid setups of Mercedes’ lineup of vehicles, the first one being the Formula 1-derived Project One. But don’t expect the hybrid cars for the Formula 1 Project One and the EQ to have any shared components because of the former’s race history.

The Mercedes-Benz EQ A will make its debut during the Frankfurt Auto Show, so stay tuned for more details.

 

Top 3 Features of the 2017 Mini Electric Concept

mini electric concept (8)

Mini is looking at finally introducing its first electric car as it just unveiled the Mini Electric Concept ahead of the Frankfurt Motor Show this September. The modern Mini arrived in 2001 and was redesigned in 2006 and 2013. Since then, it has become more of a fashion statement rather than an affordable car for any individual.

1. Exterior

When you first look at the Mini electric concept, it would look like a reworked Cooper to you. Seeing as the Cooper is the brand’s most iconic car, it’s easy to see why the same design and body style were used for the concept. If Mini wants to survive in this particular segment, it better make use of what made it famous in the first place.

There are new features, of course, such as the closed hexagonal grille and the striking yellow accent stripe and round “E” badge. The grille was designed to improve aerodynamics. The headlamps are the same but it now features new LED cluster. The same can be said on the sides and the rear of the concept—it’s looking more and more like a redesigned next-generation Cooper.

2. Interior

Mini did not reveal anything about what we’re going to find inside the concept car, so it looks like the concept is more aesthetics than comfort. If anything, we can assume that the concept will look like the standard Mini Cooper. This means big round center stack, a large speedo behind the steering wheel, and an overall clean dashboard design.

3. Drivetrain

The concept will be 100-percent electric. There’s an option under BMW’s current lineup. Called the i3, it uses a synchronous electric motor that can produce 170 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. It can reach 62mph from a complete standpoint in just 7.3 seconds. Top speed is 93mph.

The concept’s battery can reach a range of 186 miles on the European NEDC cycle and up to 158 miles based on the Worldwide harmonized Light vehicles Test Procedure (WLTP).

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