Highlights from this week include: Diesel Gate Part II; Ford is shipping the F-150 again; Lotus gives us budget priced Supercar ; An electric plane is on its way; It’s Official – EV’s cost less to maintain; Stellantis – late to the party, but investing $44.5B in EV’s; BMW eScooter plus more…
Last year BMW showed the world their futuristic CE-04 concept electric scooter /e-bike, and on Wednesday (July 7) they’ve officially unveiled the production version – which is strikingly similar to the concept. BMW says it has a peak-rated 42 hp and can reach 50 km/h (31 mph) in 2.6 seconds, topping out at 120 km/h (75 mph) and up to 130 kms (81 miles) of range. For less zip, a 31 hp motor is also available – with the same top speed and a maximum range of 100 kms (62 miles). Also provided is a reverse gear, which will be quite helpful considering it weighs in at a whopping 230 kg (507 lb) – about double the weight of a traditional scooter.
An internal 2.3 kW charger provides a recharge time of four hours, but there’s an optional 6.9 kW quick-charger upgrade that reduces the recharge time to one hour and 40 minutes and also recharges the battery from 20% to 80% in 45 minutes. The BMW CE 04 electric scooter can be recharged from a home wall outlet, a wall-mounted charger or a public charging station.
A large 10.25″ colour TFT screen serves as the scooter’s display and control centre and also includes navigation features that allow riders to use their phone as a GPS device. It will be available sometime in 2022 and will cost from €11,990 ($17,647 Cdn).
There are three packages available: Avantgarde for €220 ($326 Cdn), Comfort for €450 ($667 Cdn) and Dynamic for €380 ($563 Cdn).
OR… head on over to BestBuy.com and get a
Segway – eMoped C80
With a list price of only $2,199 (U.S.) – delivered! With a maximum operating range of 83 kms (52 miles) and a top speed of 32 km/h (20 mph) on a single charge, what more do you need for bombing around town? Here’s the link – BestBuy.com
Ford Gets A New Batch Of Chips, Prepares To Ship F-Series Pickups
Ford, as well as most other manufacturers have been having a semiconductor chip shortage for most of 2021, but reports are in that they’re starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel –at least as far as Ford are concerned. The Detroit Free Press is reporting that Ford has received a new batch of chips, and that will allow them to ship thousands of Ford F-Series pickups that have been gathering dust in lots around Detroit and Kentucky, awaiting for chips before they can be shipped off to customers. The semiconductor chip shortage in recent months mean manufacturers have been losing hundreds of thousands of production units all year. Over at GM, they’ve been shipping pickups without the cylinder deactivation because of the chip shortage.
According to Erich Merkle – U.S. sales analyst at Ford: “It’ll take time but stock will gradually start to improve the second half of the year,” adding that “the automaker’s inventory is at “record lows”, which is having a near-term impact on our sales.” Ford doesn’t expect dealers to receive “meaningful” amounts of inventory until August, though Merkle noted that inventory levels may not return to normal until 2022.
On a personal note, my brother-in-law is a Sales Manager at a Ford Dealership, and ordered his own F-150 back in February. He’s been told he might get it by the last day in October. The vehicle is essentially going to be a year old by the time he gets it – he’ll get his 2021 F-150 just when the 2022’s are coming out!!
On Tuesday, Lotus unveiled the Emira – which the company claims will be its last internal-combustion sports car. Global deliveries are expected to start in spring of 2022, so it’s possible it could be labelled as a 2023 model. It’s the automaker’s first new sports car in over a decade and will replace the Elise, Exige and Evora in Lotus’ global line-up. The quickest version of the Emira will do 0-62 mph (100 km/h) in less than 4.5 seconds, with a top speed of 290 km/h (180 mph). For more info and pictures, click HERE.
More pictures below…..
GM Accelerates Ontario Plant Conversion For Electric Transporters
A month or so ago we reported that GM was switching its Ingersoll Ontario plant to produce the BrightDrop EV600 light-duty electric utility vehicle. Well, they’ve recently announced that in order for GM to meet the demand for the new electric van, the internal combustion engines built at Ingersoll will phased out earlier than first planned. Production of the Chevrolet Equinox, currently produced there, will end as soon as April of next year. GM’s is creating enough capacity to double the number of units of the BrightDrop EV600’s first year of production in order to keep up with expected demand.
Conversion of the plant will take four months, and after a test phase, production of the EV600 is expected to start in November 2022. BrightDrop production at the Canadian plant is expected to expand to two shifts sometime in 2023, and “Market permitting,” the plan is to expand to three shifts in 2024.
The first EV600s are to be delivered to FedEx Express from the end of 2021. Merchants Fleet – a US fleet-management company, has ordered 12,600 BrightDrop electric delivery vans to include them in its customers’ fleets from the beginning of 2023.
How cool does that plane look?
Eviation Aircraft, an electric plane start-up based in Seattle (originally an Israeli start-up), plans to fly the production version of its electric commuter aircraft, the Alice by year’s end. The plane is on track to be fully in-service sometime during 2024.
Rather than a vertical take-off design, the Alice has been designed with a traditional fixed-wings, and features the capacity to carry nine passengers (plus 2 crew) for 1,046 kms (650 miles), making it suitable for the U.S. commuter market. In 2019, the company said it had more than 150 orders from customers – including Cape Air, a regional carrier in New York and New England. There’s no word on any additional orders at this time… https://www.eviation.co/
Note: the original release of numbers – 1,046 kms (650 miles), differs from the official website numbers: “up to” 440 nautical miles (800 kms); top speed of 220 knots (400 km/h); a maximum payload of 2,500 pounds (1,130 kilos).
Canadian Government Throws Some Money At B.C. For Fast Chargers –
The Government of Canada announced a $2,350,000 investment to British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority, to install 47 electric vehicle fast chargers across the province. The fast-chargers will be available for public use by early winter. The BC Government is also throwing in $1,175,000, bringing the project’s total cost to $3,525,000 – or $75,000 per fast charger.
It’s Official: US Government Says EV’s Cost 40% Less To Maintain
In its latest study, the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy says, shows battery electric cars cost less to maintain than conventional cars, hybrids, and plug-in hybrids. An ICE vehicle has about 10,000 moving parts to make it go, meanwhile a battery electric car has less than 10. Fewer parts, means fewer things that require servicing – which in turn means less money to maintain.
Looking strictly at the numbers – who cares about a difference of a measly 4 cents in savings? Consider this… the light duty vehicles (sedans, SUVs, passenger vans etc), owned and operated by the federal government travelled nearly 2 billion miles (3,218,688,000 kms) in 2019, according to the General Services Administration. That difference of 4 little cents translates into savings of about $78 million a year, according to Motor Trend. For more information click HERE
When the Italian-American (Fiat/Chrysler) and French (PSA Group) manufacturers joined forces in January, the group known as Stellantis became one of the world’s biggest automakers and the second-largest in Europe, after VW. While just about every other manufacturer has been spending big on electrifying their vehicles, Stellantis has been dragging its heels on committing to slightly more than a token gesture to EV’s – other than Peugeot, Citroen and Opel. In North America the Jeep, Ram, Chrysler and Dodge brands combined have… 2 sort of electric vehicles – the Jeep eWrangler and Chrysler Pacifica van… oh, and the Fiat 500e.
On Thursday (July 8th), that all changed. (drum roll) They announced a significant investment in electrification. Here’s some highlights:
- Plans to invest more than €30 billion ($44.5 billion Cdn) through 2025 in electrification and software
- Targeting over 70% of sales in Europe and over 40% in the United States to be low-emission vehicles (LEV) by 2030
- All 14 brands committed to offering best-in-class fully electrified solutions
- Delivering battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) that meet demands of customers, with ranges of 300-500 miles (500-800 km)
- And class-leading fast charging capability of 20 miles (32 km) per minute
- Plans include dual battery chemistries: a high energy-density option and a nickel cobalt-free alternative by 2024
- Solid state battery technology introduction planned in 2026
- The company’s EV battery sourcing strategy is to secure more than 130 gigawatt hours (GWh) of capacity by 2025 and more than 260 GWh by 2030.
- The EV battery and component needs will be met with a total of five “gigafactories” in Europe and North America
- Affordability is a priority as the company is targeting for the total cost of ownership of EVs to be equivalent to internal combustion engine vehicles by 2026
Four BEV-centric platforms are the backbone of the electrified vehicles from Stellantis brands. The platforms are designed with a high level of flexibility (length and width) and component sharing, delivering economies of scale as each platform can support production of up to 2 million units per year.
The four platforms are:
STLA Small, with a range up to 300 miles (500 kilometres)
STLA Medium, with a range up to 440 miles (700 kilometres)
STLA Large, with a range up to 500 miles (800 kilometres)
STLA Frame, with a range up to 500 miles (800 kilometres)
Propulsion includes a family of three electric drive modules (EDM) that combine the motor, gearbox and inverter. These EDMs are compact, flexible and can be easily scaled. The EDMs can be configured for front-drive, rear-drive, all-wheel drive and 4xe.
All-New 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe
Also during the Stellantis EV Day 2021 (Thursday July 8th), the Jeep brand revealed the first image of its all-new 2022 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4xe plug-in hybrid…. and that was just about all we got.
If you’re looking for a good movie that is related to the auto industry, here’s a recommendation for you… No Sudden Move is a star-studded Steven Soderbergh heist movie set in 1950’s Detroit involving “the big four” (GM, Ford, Chrysler and American Motors) and a secret device they want to keep from Studebaker and Packard. It’s “loosely inspired by true events” so it’s true, except for the made up bits.
A group of criminals are brought together under mysterious circumstances to get and deliver a package. It’s all very simple until the simple job goes completely sideways. It’s a great movie from start to finish with loads of twists and double-crossing amongst everyone involved – and others you don’t think were involved. Although Steven Soderbergh directed it, it almost has a Guy Richie feel to it.
A Similar Issue To The Movie Mentioned Above…
Here Comes Diesel Gate Part II
Volkswagen & BMW Fined $1 Billion By EU For Pollution Cartel – Daimler Avoids Fine After Snitching On The Cartel
VW must pay about €502 million and BMW will pay nearly €373 million, the European Commission said in an emailed statement on Thursday. The penalty for BMW is far below its initial provision of 1.4 billion euros after doing a U-turn by in agreeing to settle the probe instead of fighting the EU.
The carmakers “possessed the technology to reduce harmful emissions beyond what was legally required under EU emission standards,” Margrethe Vestager, the EU’s antitrust chief, said in the statement. “But they avoided “competing” on using this technology’s full potential.”
The EU said the three carmakers struck a deal on AdBlue technology that adds urea to exhaust gases to reduce harmful nitrogen oxide emissions from diesel cars. Swapping commercially sensitive information “removed the uncertainty about their future market conduct” and restricted competition for product features useful for customers. The EU said the conduct lasted from 2009 and 2014.
Volkswagen will consider an appeal before a mid-September deadline, it said, adding that regulators in China, South Korea and Turkey are also examining potential AdBlue collusion. VW is still dealing with the fallout from the original Diesel Gate which has cost the company almost €32 billion euros – so far.
Lotus Emira Pictures…
That’s A Wrap! For this week. Until next time…
Copyright © 2021 by Iain Shankland. All rights reserved.
Text: Iain Shankland / Images: Respective Manufacturers / Outlets
Our ISP was “choking” our internet speed because they didn’t like that we were streaming TV and Movies – added NordVPN to our Android Media box – problem solved. The bonus is we now get to watch Netflix in the U.S. and U.K.!!