Volvo announced Thursday that it would make an all-electric car available by 2019 and offer more plug-in hybrid versions of its cars sooner, starting with the S90. Volvo already sells a plug-in hybrid version of its XC90 SUV.The automaker’s announced plans follow news that it would make a compact crossover by 2018, likely called the XC40, which would eventually share the same architecture as its V40 and V40 Cross Country.According to the automaker, Volvo expects 10 percent of its sales by 2020 to be of electric cars. The automaker reported 465,000 sales in 2014.The push for hybrid and electric cars by Volvo is seen as the Swedish automaker’s attempt to capitalize on growing backlash toward diesel. Volvo currently offers at least five different diesel engines in its cars internationally.“We believe that the time has come for electrified cars to cease being a niche technology and enter the mainstream,” Hakan Samuelsson, President and CEO of Volvo Cars, … [Read more...] about Volvo Will Sell Electric Car By 2019; Plug-in Hybrid S90 Sooner
Almost three out of four electric cars on the road are leased — not purchased — according to data from Edmunds, which was compiled by CNBC. (The leasing data excludes Tesla, who does not report leasing rates.)The overall lease penetration rate for electric cars, which is 74.9 percent, is much higher than the overall rate for all cars, which is 28 percent. The leasing rate for luxury cars is roughly 50 percent, according to Edmunds.According to the report, EV drivers are more likely to be early adopters but are hesitant to own the vehicles due to increasing battery capacity and rapidly evolving technology. In other words, electric cars are becoming the new iPhones.Residual and resale value continue to be a hurdle for many electric cars, prompting new owners to opt for leases rather than pay out of pocket.“Typically, you would have about 40 to 50 percent retention from three years after vehicle is new. EVs are only at 25 to 30 percent retention from their … [Read more...] about Three Out of Four Electric Cars Are Leased, Not Purchased
An interesting combination of reports, compiled by the New York Times, shows that Americans saved money at the pumps from cheaper gas is mostly going to more gas and more expensive gas.The average American should have saved roughly $41 from cheaper gas prices, according to a report by JPMorgan. Instead of taking home those savings, most people only took home $22. A separate study by Brown University and University of Chicago researchers indicated that most people were buying more expensive gas when gas prices dipped.The phenomenon, which is called “mental accounting,” roughly translates to people spending a target amount of money — regardless of price.According to the report, people spent a disproportionate amount on gas compared to the price per gallon. The JPMorgan study compares gas spending between December 2013 and February 2014, when prices averaged $3.31 a gallon, with gas spending by the same people in the same period one year later, when … [Read more...] about When We’re All Driving Electric Cars, What Will We Be Spending Gas Money On?
Electric car sales in Georgia have halted after that state stopped offering incentives and started charging a $200 annual fee to recoup lost gas tax revenue, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.New electric vehicle registrations plummeted 89 percent from June to August after the state stopped offering a $5,000 tax break on top of the $7,500 federal incentive. Georgia’s incentive was one of the most generous in the country.Georgia’s electric purge could portend a future in highly incentivized states, such as California and Colorado, where electric incentives and sales are still relatively strong.According to the International Council on Clean Transportation, countries with direct incentives (such as tax breaks, or one-time bonus payments) have considerably higher EV sales than countries without incentives, however that isn’t always universally true.“A counter-example is the UK, where despite relatively high incentives electric vehicle … [Read more...] about Incentive Money Gone, Electric Car Sales Have Dried Up In Georgia
Faraday Future, the other, other bespoke electric luxury carmaking startup said they’ll show off their concept for the “future of mobility” next month at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.The automaker’s website sports a clock counting down to 7 p.m. (Pacific) Jan. 4, 2016, for the automaker’s unveiling. The company has made several high-profile hires, including head of engineering Nick Sampson who helped Tesla design chassis for their cars, according to The Verge.In an interview with the website, Sampson said the company expects to roughly double from 400 employees now and challenge other automakers soon. The company announced last month that its looking to invest $1 billion in a factory in California, Georgia, Louisiana or Nevada.Other efforts from electric startups such as Fisker (now Karma) and Think City largely stalled when economic realities of building electric cars set in. Tesla, the poster child for electric car startups, … [Read more...] about Faraday Future Has An Electric Car to Show Next Month At CES
Ford Motor Company recently announced that it will be investing more than $4.5 billion over the next five years into its electric vehicle program and that it will have 13 electric vehicles on sale by 2020. The announcement follows the Ford company’s original investment in EV technology and the first Ford electric cars by 102 years.Hopefully, the current spending will yield more fruitful results than did Henry Ford’s original look into EVs more than a century ago.Henry Ford and Thomas Edison became good friends later in life, but before Ford became famous as an automaker, he was an employee of Edison’s. When Ford made his first automobile, the Quadricycle, in 1896, he was then employed as chief operating engineer of Detroit’s Edison Illuminating Company. That same year Ford attended a company banquet in New York City honoring Edison, where it was documented that the two men discussed Ford’s experiments with gasoline powered transportation, … [Read more...] about Ford Motor Co. Invests $4.5B in EVs, a Century After Henry Ford Gave Up On Electric Cars
Living in Northern California, electric cars are a common sight – all you have to do is look in the left lane. There are numerous Tesla Model S’s, Nissan Leafs, and the occasional Ford Focus or Chevrolet Spark EV. Plug-in hybrids like the Chevy Volt, Ford Fusion and C-MAX Energi, and the Prius hybrid can be seen every day. BMW is planning on releasing plug-in hybrids of its core models like the 3-Series and the X5 in 2016. Four years ago, that wasn’t the case.Back in 2011, when the documentary Revenge of the Electric Car was released, Tesla was attempting to sell the last of their Roadsters and the Model S was still a prototype. The Volt and Leaf were about to go on sale in electric car-friendly states (like California). Gas was never below $3 a gallon that year. In 2015, there are at least 15 electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles with more on the way. Tesla is worth billions of dollars, even though it sells only one car, the Model S which in the documentary … [Read more...] about Review: Revenge Of The Electric Car
At a one-day workshop Tuesday sponsored by the Federal Trade Commission to discuss the future of automobile dealers in the U.S., executives from General Motors and Tesla jabbed at each other over electric car sales.GM CEO and Chairwoman Mary Barra touted the new Chevrolet Bolt as being one of the few all-electric cars that could be purchased in all states.Later, at a direct-sale discussion, a lawyer for Tesla chided Barra by saying that it was GM’s persistence in shaping dealer law nearly a century ago that has forced Tesla out of six states including Michigan and Texas.“Because they voluntarily chose generations ago to use a certain business model, (GM thinks) everyone that comes after should be required as a matter of law to use the same model,” Tesla lawyer Todd Maron said Tuesday.The FTC held a daylong workshop on the future of automotive distribution in Washington D.C. to discuss direct sales and how future autonomous cars could be sold. Elio Motors’ Vice … [Read more...] about General Motors, Tesla Spar Over Electric Car Sales
In an op-ed in USA Today, headlined “Electric car benefits? Just myths“, author of The Skeptical Environmentalist, Bjørn Lomborg, calls for people to “stop our green worship of the electric car,” arguing that EVs end up costing society a lot of money while doing little to cut emissions of carbon dioxide. Even more provocatively, Lomborg claims that because EVs are, for the most part, ultimately powered by coal fired electrical generating plants, the pollution associated with cars that run on electrons will end up killing almost twice as many people as that created by gasoline powered vehicles.He says, for example, that the total life cycle CO2 emissions of the Tesla Model S will be about 44 tons, compared to an Audi A7 Quattro’s ~49 tons. At the current trading rate of $9/ton on Europe’s carbon emissions market, that works out to what Lomborg describes as just $45 in climate benefits for the $7,500 tax credit by which … [Read more...] about Skeptical Environmentalist Bjørn Lomborg Says Electric Cars Kill More Than ICEs
It sounds like a car guy’s fantasy, using beer to power a car.And it still is fantasy, unfortunately.However, a couple of researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder have filed for a patent on a method to use the byproduct of the brewing process to create anodes for lithium-ion batteries, the power source for most electric cars.Currently, no pun intended, the very pure graphite that is used to make lithium-ion batteries is mined, primarily in China, and then doped with other elements like cobalt and magnesium as it is processed into anodes. Engineers Justin Whiteley and Tyler Huggins say their method is more environmentally friendly than mining, more sustainable, and — of greatest importance in commercializing the process — cheaper than extracting it from the earth.Besides cleaning up the battery building process, the method also promises to make brewing beer more environmentally friendly. It takes about seven barrels of water to make one barrel of beer. … [Read more...] about Could Beer Power Your Electric Car?