Thursday 10th May 2018.
FULLY CHARGED DRIVE MERCEDES EQC
- Only yesterday I was talking about a 1min long YouTube video, all shaky and blurry, showing the Mercedes EQC. With me like a numpty going on about how the bonnet looks too long for an EV.
- And then a few hours later Fully Charged released 20 mins of gorgeousness as Jonny Smith got in the passenger seat. As they say: “Jonny Smith goes for a ride in the Mercedes-Benz EQC. This SUV is the first Mercedes EV to be built from the ground up and it will the first of the new range of electrified cars to be announced later this year. The EQC is still in testing so this is a very early look at what is to come in the near future.”
- Jonny’s style is SO good, relaxed and asking the odd cheeky question, getting bits of info out of PR people who are notoriously tight lipped. I was talking to someone recently about him, someone I know who work on car magazine, and I was saying how Johnny is the best of the best when it comes to telling the story of a car…and then my friend tells me Jonny used to work for him on a magazine. And yes, he also confirmed, he’s a bit of a legend.
- Anyway away from my mancrush and back to the Mercedes EQC. I’m about to say a couple of details from the vid, so if you’d rather, stop the podcast now. Johnny started off by saying it was their first proper EV, which I’ve said before, and got corrected by a very generous listener – rather than telling me I am an idiot, he sent me a pic of his B250. So yes, this isn’t Mercedes first EV.
- Things we learn from the video, it’s a 70kWh pack which seems small
- They want 500km or 310miles from that, which sounds optimistic? That would be 14kWh per 100km. The Model X is something like 380km with a pack 5kWh larger.
- The person who was doing the driving and most of the talking was the lead engineer, which was refreshing, as he wasn’t a typical PR media type with a perfect answer which says a lot without saying anything, everything he said has value. Typical engineer. And bear in mind English is not his first language.
- Talking about the engineer who was driving it, he kept stabbing the accelerator and giving Jonny that burst of EV power, and every time he did it gave a little smile.
- Yesterday on the podcast I commented that the bonnet is too long, they could make it smaller and just have a crash structure, which makes more room for the cabin. That was explained because the platform will be used for electric, hybrid and gas. Under the hood or bonnet is a cradle that fits where the combustion engine fits, so Mercedes can use the same production line and drop in the powertrain.
- And?Jonny ends up on his hand and knees. But I won’t spoilt THAT surprise.
- Finally if you haven’t been watching Fully Charged, go onto YouTube, go back a few years and see Robert talking about trying to cajole PR departments to return calls or play ball with lending him vehicles. Fast forward and they have the best videos than any TV show, a live event soon and a massive Patreon supporter base. Huge congrats to Robert, Jonny, Mark, Dan and the team for creating a great channel. It’s another gorgeous video with some classy tracking shots and they’ve got the drone up.
BMW WIRELESS CAR CHARGING COMING SOON
- Car Magazine reports that BMW will debut it’s wireless charging in July this year, and it’s set to work with BMW PHEV’s. The Car Magazine article says: “BMW sources told CAR today (May 8) that the tech is indeed headed for our market, and will be available exclusively on a leasing deal with a 5-series 530e iPerformance. To start with, that is”.
- Wireless charging can be as good as a home Level 2 charger at 7.7kW, although this BMW systen works at 3.5kW for a full charge in 3-4hrs. There’s leeway on being over the charging pad but cameras will guide into you the correct position.
- Well worth following CAR on socials, they are some of the best out there for great content.
GOVERNMENT APPROVES GREEN LICENCE PLATES FOR E-VEHICLES
- In India they have confirmed green plates for EVs, private electric cars and EV cabs. “The purpose behind distinctive number plates is their easy identification for preferential treatment in parking, free entry in congested zones besides other proposed benefits like concessional toll, the road transport” says MoneyControl.com. This is what we need here for ICE cars parking in electric charging bays. If we all had green plates and legislation to keep EVs in certain spaces, it would mean those ICE cars would get tickets or towed.
THE ‘DRY ANALYST’ WANTS ROUND TWO WITH ELON
- Dry Dave wants another go with Elon. I didn’t actually catch the name of the analyst on the Tesla earning call who got cut off by Elon for asking a dry question, so we’ll call him Dry Dave for now. I’ll Google him whilst talking. Anyway, he’s p’eed off. And you don’t want an upset analyst because, well, who knows what they do?
- Anyway, now Dry Dave has written an open letter to Elon – which sounds a bit needy already – he says “I continue to hold Tesla accountable for implementing a strategic vision that aligns with an ability to execute at scale. Name the time and place and I will be there, along with every one of your major shareholders.” He’s also sent Elon a set of written questions which I imagine he’ll hope are more…I don’t know?wet? Somehow I don’t think Elon will even give this a second of his time. Ah here we are, his name is Joseph Spek apparently. Spekky! I wouldn’t hold your breath for that call Super Speks.
GERMANY’S MERKEL SEES CHANCE FOR ELECTRIC CAR BATTERY PRODUCTION IN EUROPE
- German Chancellor Angela Merkel said yesterday that German car makers are moving into a better position for battery production. The actual cells inside batteries all come from South Korea or China. Volkswagen-owned truck maker Scania said earlier this year it is investing 10m Euro as part of a 4bn Euro project to build Europe’s biggest battery cell plant in northern Sweden.
ONE THIRD OF IRISH DRIVERS PLAN TO BUY A FULL-ELECTRIC CAR IN NEAR FUTURE
- Yesterday we told you how 50million, or 20% of Americans are considering an EV for their next car. Now the Irish Mirror says: “One in three Irish motorists planning on buying a new car in the near future will go for a full-electric vehicle, according to a new survey. A total of 37% of people questioned said they will buy an electrified car next time around.”
NEW LAW TO SEE ELECTRIC CARS MAKE MORE NOISE
- “From July 2019, all new electric and hybrid vehicles sold in Europe must be equipped with sound devices. Older electric cars must also be retrofitted with sound devices by 2021” says Garage Wire. Kevin Clinton of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents said: “The greatest risks associated with electric vehicles are when they are travelling at low speeds, such as in urban areas with lower limits, as the noise from tyres and the road surface, and aerodynamic noise, are minimal at those speeds”
- But you do still have eyes. I do think we need to consider those who are visually impaired. But making every single car emit white noise is going to be irritating. Driving around a city you never get another 20mph, and with the windows down, your EV would actually be louder than an ICE car. Multiply that by every other car on the road. All we’ll hear is buzzes and beeps and white noise.
I’d love to spread the word about electric cars so, if you can, share this somebody who might be interested.
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