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Yesterday the Obama administration announced “an unprecedented set of actions” to grow the U.S. plug-in electrified vehicle market.
The initiative represents a broad collaboration between federal agencies, state governments, major automakers, utilities, and others to aid the ongoing push to make electric cars viable alternatives to the internal combustion variety.
Perhaps chief in a laundry list of public and private sector agreements is up to $4.5 billion in loan guarantees for commercial scale charging — including fast charging — to create a nationwide network.
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As the saying goes, if you can’t sign a supply agreement with ’em, buy a part of ’em.
That’s clearly not a saying, but that’s what Samsung Electronics Company just did with Chinese electric automaker BYD, handing over $440 million deal for a 1.9 percent stake in the company. According to Bloomberg, a Samsung subsidiary was turned down by China as an approved supplier of batteries to the automaker, so the electronics giant tried another door. Read More >
Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s vision for his company’s future covers all the automotive bases, from personal vehicles to commercial trucks and transit fleets.
In a blog post on Tesla’s website, Musk spelled out the steps of his “Master Plan, Part Deux” — a long-term update of his previous decade-long business plan. With the Model 3 on the way in late 2017, the old plan has come to an end, so the company’s founder is looking for other things to power with electricity. Read More >
Audi is apparently about to embrace electric vehicles with all the intensity of a daughter greeting her father on the tarmac after the war.
According to Reuters, company sources say the automaker plans to make EVs account for 25 percent of sales by 2025 — a move that would erase the environmental stigma of its parent company and challenge Tesla in the fledgling luxury EV field. Read More >
The federal agencies reviewing the country’s corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) targets are pleasantly surprised by the amount of fuel-saving technology in modern vehicles, and hint that the target they decided on back in 2011 is still doable.
Those agencies just released a technical assessment report (TAR) to guide the review process. In it, they figured that vehicles will average between 50 and 52.6 miles per gallon by the target year of 2025 — if gas stays stable and consumers continue buying SUVs and trucks.
That’s not too far off the original target, and judging by the optimistic tone of the report, it’s likely the 54.5 mpg mandate will stay intact. Read More >
Getting a good price for a used Tesla is now solely up to its owner, after the automaker discontinued a program that allows three-year-old vehicles to be bought back for 50 percent of the purchase price.
Tesla dumped the program on July 1, Reuters reports, allowing the company earmarked for the program for other purposes. The program was created to assure would-be owners of a basic resale value after the Model S entered the marketplace. Read More >
Just as it did recently with the Model S, Tesla just took its Model X SUV in for a battery and price haircut, resulting in a new base model.
The automaker’s website now shows the availability of a 60D version of the all-wheel-drive utility, meaning a 60 kilowatt battery and an EPA estimated 200 miles of range. The battery shrinkage makes the new model the shortest-ranged Tesla in the stable, but it also undercuts the price of the formerly base 75D by $9,000. Read More >
Some eight years after the now-defunct Motive Magazine put a Smart ForTwo to work on an urban golf course, Mercedes is finally catching up to support its customers’ favorite pastime.
Revealed yesterday, the Mercedes-Benz Style Edition Garia Golf Car isn’t just a glitzed up golf cart made to look like a miniature GLE Coupe. Instead, it’s the product of a competition started in 2013 to build the best golf cart or nothing.
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Columbus, Ohio was chosen as the winner of the U.S. Department of Transportation’s “Smart City Challenge,” beating out six other mid-size cities for the $40 million federal grant.
With that grant and $100 million pledged from philanthropic and business sources on tap, the city’s plan will see improvements in social infrastructure and green, connected transportation — including greater electric vehicle use and new recharging infrastructure — despite the fact that Ohio’s power grid isn’t very green. Read More >
Halfway through its mandate to have 15.4 percent of the state’s vehicles generate zero emissions by 2025, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) is now considering changing its requirements.
The problem is too many credits handed out to green car manufacturers, who then sell them to dirtier automakers to bolster their standing with CARB, Bloomberg reports. Read More >