It’s Tuesday 12th June 2018 and this is your EV News Daily. Good morning, good afternoon and good evening! Wherever you’re listening around the world, a very warm welcome from London, UK.  Here is today’s news about electric cars and the future of transport. My name is Martyn Lee and I go through every EV article online so you don’t have to.

 

JAGUAR LAND ROVER MAKES ROOM FOR ELECTRIC RE-TOOLING

  • “Britain’s biggest car manufacturer, Jaguar Land Rover, is to transfer all production of its Land Rover Discovery model from the West Midlands to a plant in Slovakia, potentially putting hundreds of agency jobs at risk.” reports The UK’s Guardian. However the move is seen as an opportunity to re-tool the plant to build the next wave of electric cars. “The company has said it would make an electric option for each of its new models after 2020
  • David Bailey, the professor of industrial strategy at Aston University, said: “There has been speculation locally that they needed to free up space to make electric vehicles. There was concern that their first electric car, the I-Pace, was being made in Austria ? people wanted that built here. If this move on the Discovery means producing electric cars here, overall that is a good thing. We want to see that transition to a low-carbon economy in the Midlands and we want to see the jobs here.”

 

GERMANY DISCOVERS MORE ‘SWITCH OFF’ DEVICES IN MERCEDES

  • Daimler shares fell following a report that up to 1 million Daimler cars could contain their own form of what is commonly called a ‘defeat devices’, as Chief Executive Dieter Zetsche prepared to meet the transport minister on Monday.
  • “Daimler declined to comment on the 1 million vehicles figure, but said it is cooperating fully and transparently with the KBA and Germany’s Transport Ministry.” reports Autoblog: “Daimler, like other car manufacturers, uses urea nitrate liquids to neutralize nitrogen oxide emissions in exhaust fumes. However, Germany’s road vehicle authority, the KBA, has taken issue with the emission control features amid suspicion they allow vehicles to emit excess pollution without detection.”

 

MORE ON TESLA AUTOPILOT AND AI

  • Following up on the story we talked about on yesterday show about improved Autopilot for Tesla: “With V9, we will begin to enable full self-driving features”
  • A reminder than version 8.0 arrived in 2016 so this update is long-awaited.
  • @anandrajk – “Speaking of merging and autopilot the biggest issue i have noticed is when two lanes merge and it is rush hour traffic. The autopilot is not able to decide to let the car slightly ahead on the neighboring lane go ahead and I invariably find myself cornered!”
  • @elonmusk – “That issue is better in latest Autopilot software rolling out now & fully fixed in August update as part of our long-awaited Tesla Version 9. To date, Autopilot resources have rightly focused entirely on safety. With V9, we will begin to enable full self-driving features.”
  • Meanwhile, in a related story picked up by Fred Lambert, Electrek reports: “Andrej Karpathy, Tesla’s director of AI and computer vision, is currently hard at work trying to improve Autopilot by training Tesla’s neural net with incredible amounts of data from Tesla’s fleet. He describes how labeling different types of road lines can be quite complex due to the variety of lanes across different regions. He gave another example of Tesla’s dataset with traffic lights, which he says can “get crazy really fast. Karpathy explained that it takes “time and attention” to build a dataset and it is “painful,” which is why they are trying to build new tools at Tesla to help them create “software 2.0″ code.”

 

TESLA’S ‘SUPERIOR’ ELECTRONIC ARCHITECTURE ‘OVERLOOKED’ SAYS BERENBERG

  • “Analysts at investment bank Berenberg said people tended to dwell on the competitive landscape for electric car maker Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ:TSLA), but underestimated the “full extent of Tesla’s technology advantage.” say the team at Proactiveinvestors
  • “Imminent competition from traditional Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) is often cited as a key threat to Tesla, but this underestimates the full extent of Tesla’s technology advantage, which manifests in the entire electronic architecture design,” wrote analysts at Berenberg in a research note to clients issued Friday.
  • “This is a decisive barrier for legacy carmakers. Tesla’s centralised, integrated, technology-driven architecture enables flexibility and OTA (over-the-air) software-upgradeability across the entire domain. In contrast, traditional architectures implement technology additively to the legacy infrastructure, resulting in decentralised electronic control units (ECUs) systems that creates excess complexity and incompatibility,” they added.

 

CATL SURGES ON DAY ONE

  • “Making its market debut in Shenzhen on Monday, China’s largest lithium battery maker Contemporary Amperex Technology Ltd. saw its shares soar by 44% — the maximum allowed for newly-listed stocks on their first trading day.” according to Nikkei.com: “CATL’s shares, which were listed on the tech-focused ChiNext index of the Shenzhen Stock Exchange, reached 36.2 yuan apiece, giving the seven-year-old company a valuation of $78.6 billion yuan ($12.2 billion). This makes it the second largest company by market capitalization on ChiNext, with investors bullish on industries related to electric vehicles thanks to Beijing’s campaign against pollution.”

 

MERCEDES BENZ SHOWS OFF EQA PROTOYPE

  • “Mercedes has showed off footage of its prototype EQA, the compact EV that’s part of its next-generation of EQ electric cars. It first unveiled the A-Class-sized electric car at the Frankfurt Auto Show last year, but it now apparently has a working prototype.” according to Engadget: “Its expected to have a 60 kWh battery pack that will yield a 200 to 250 mile range, and electric drivetrain that will propel it from 0 to 60 mph in around five seconds. A DC quick-charging system will allow you to add 60 miles or so of range in just ten minutes. All three EQ EVs just happen to match up against Tesla models, with the EQA taking on the Model 3, the EQS the Model S, and the EQC matching up against Tesla’s Model X. Mercedes hasn’t revealed the pricing of any of the vehicles yet, of course, nor when the EQS and EQA would come to market.”

 

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