Good morning, good afternoon, and good evening wherever you are in the world, welcome to EV News Daily, your trusted source of EV information. It’s Friday 8th September, Martyn Lee here and I go through every EV story so you don’t have to. We go live at 5pm UK, that’s Midday Eastern. Patreon supporters get the episodes as soon as they’re ready and ad free. You can be like them by clicking here.
2024 Mustang Mach-E Rally: Ford’s Nod to the Focus RS Legacy
The Mustang Mach-E Rally channels the essence of the discontinued Focus RS, aiming to outshine the current top-dog, the Mach-E GT Performance. Its design, a fusion of the Focus RS-inspired rear spoiler and distinct Mach-E details like body moldings, a black painted steel roof, and rally-inspired fog lights, sets it apart.
Ford will harness over 480 horsepower and 650 pound-feet of torque from the Rally’s twin electric motors. Tailored for gravel and dirt, Ford even built a specialized rally track in Michigan to fine-tune the Rally.
It boasts a revamped suspension with an added 200 mm of ride height, MagneRide shocks, unique springs, and larger front Brembo brakes. 15.8-inch front brake discs, 1.5 inches larger than the 2023 Mach-E’s, paired with Brembo’s red calipers ensure effective braking. Ford targets a 250-mile range from the Rally’s 91.0 kWh battery pack.
While retaining the GT’s 480 horsepower, Ford aims to boost the torque to at least 650 pound-feet. The innovative “RallySport” drive mode, designed for off-road excellence, ensures bigger slides, smoother throttle response, and superior control on rugged terrains. The Mach-E Rally sports white 19-inch rally-style wheels with Michelin CrossClimate2 tires and protective features like motor shields and paint protection film.
Equipped with the upcoming version 1.3 of Ford’s BlueCruise self-driving system, the Mach-E Rally is set to debut next spring with a starting price around $65,000.
Lotus Emeya: The Electric Hyper GT Rivaling Porsche Taycan
Following the launch of the Evija hypercar and the Eletre SUV, Lotus unveils the Emeya, dubbed a “four-door hyper GT”.
The Emeya showcases a similar powertrain to the Eletre, but with enhanced aerodynamics for optimal performance. It’s poised to rival the likes of the Porsche Taycan, Lucid Air, and Tesla Model S.
The standard Emeya is powered by a 102.0-kWh battery pack, delivering 603 horsepower and 523 pound-feet of torque, aligning with the base Eletre models.
The Emeya’s front axle sports a single-speed gearbox, while its rear drive unit features a two-speed transmission. Its impressive charging capabilities support up to 350kW, enabling a swift 10 to 80% recharge in 15 minutes and adding 93 miles of range in just five minutes, making the most of an 800v architecture.
The Emeya’s 280mm-wide active rear spoiler, 100mm wider than the Eletre’s, delivers over 215kg of downforce. This, combined with an active rear diffuser, ensures high-speed stability. The vehicle also integrates an active front grille, first seen on the Eletre, and an active air ‘lip’ for enhanced downforce. The grille adjusts to reduce drag or cool the battery and brakes. Borrowing the ‘porosity’ design from the Eletre, the Emeya has eight channels in its body for optimal airflow and cooling. A highlight is its 55-inch augmented reality head-up display, which blends real-time road data with navigation and driver assistance alerts, ensuring safety and awareness.
The premium variant ramps up to 905 horsepower and 727 pound-feet of torque, and this high-end model boasts a 0-62 mph acceleration in under 2.8 seconds and a top speed of 159 mph.
While its official range is yet to be confirmed, Lotus hints at a 260-315 mile span, depending on the configuration. Production begins in 2024, with its U.S. debut slated for 2025. Pricing is speculative, but the base model is expected to start above $100,000, with the high-end variant surpassing $150,000.
Lotus said: “The manufacture of the Emeya, similar to the Eletre, is in one of the most modern automotive production facilities in the world, in Wuhan, China. The factory is owned by Geely Holding Group, and it is dedicated to making only Lotus products.”
Hilton and Tesla Partner for Massive EV Charging Expansion
Hilton and Tesla have struck a deal to set up as many as 20,000 Tesla Universal Wall Connectors across 2,000 Hilton hotel locations in the US, Canada, and Mexico. Installations of these Tesla EV chargers are slated to commence in early 2024. Tesla’s recently introduced Universal Wall Connector has garnered appreciation within the EV community. This acclaim stems from the charger’s dual compatibility: it’s equipped with both a North American Charging Standard (NACS) plug and an Integrated J1772 adapter, allowing it to serve both Tesla and non-Tesla vehicles.
Given that each hotel will house a minimum of six chargers, Hilton might emerge as the top pick for EV motorists.
– Rebecca Tinucci, Tesla’s senior director of charging infrastructure, emphasized the potential of the Hilton partnership in promoting EV adoption. She stated that a primary focus for Tesla Charging is to establish affordable, convenient AC charging spots wherever EVs are parked for extended periods.
BP Pulse Unveils UK’s Premier EV Charging Hub in Birmingham
BP Pulse has unveiled the “UK’s largest public EV charging hub” at Birmingham’s National Exhibition Centre (NEC). Featuring 16 ultra-rapid 300kW chargers and 150 slower 7kW points, the hub can charge 180 vehicles simultaneously. Opened on 7 September 2023, the BP Gigahub not only provides efficient charging but also offers easy access to the NEC and a Starbucks drive-thru. This venture, a collaboration between BP Pulse and the EV Network (EVN), merges rapid charging with the convenience of longer stay Level 2 charging. The partnership arose after sealing a deal with the NEC to cater to its seven million yearly visitors. Located near the M42’s junction six and less than three miles from the M6, the hub is strategically positioned for the 60 million vehicles passing by annually. It prioritizes inclusivity, with wheelchair-friendly ultra-rapid bays and designated accessible bays for 7kW chargers. BP Pulse envisions launching hundreds of such hubs by 2030, targeting urban areas, major routes, and popular spots like restaurants and malls.
The site secured a 6.5MVA grid connection.
What’s not clear is if it’s a NEC car park so you have to pay whilst you charge. The NEC said: ““We are proud to contribute to the UK Government’s Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Strategy. Working in collaboration with EVN and bp pulse, the opening of our EV charging hub provides NEC Campus customers, commuters, and those working for local regional or national businesses, a reliable and convenient way to recharge”
Listener Phil Allen sent me a link to the NEC website:
NEC Pre-booked EV Park and Charge (East 3) The pre-book NEC EV Park and Charge offers 150 x 7 kw chargers, allowing you have peace of mind you’re fully charged before you leave. Make sure you download the BP Pulse app to access the chargers. You can pay for your charge in two ways…
Opt 1 Already registered? You can pay with your BP pulse RFID card.
Opt 2 Or via the BP Pulse app. Simply click to find a charge, type in the
charge ID found on the charger and start charging.
How to use a BP pulse 7kw charger?
- Lift the flap to access the socket.
- Insert the charging cable plug into the electric
vehicle before connecting to the charging socket.
- To start a charge, tap your RFID card or use the app.
- To stop your charge, tap your RFID card or
use the app.
- To end a charge tap the RFID card on the reader
or end via the app
UK Launches LEVI Fund To Expand Charging
The Chancellor has unveiled the opportunity for several local authorities in England to tap into the first phase of the Government’s £343 million Local Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (LEVI) Capital Fund. The primary objective of the LEVI fund is to facilitate the nationwide shift to electric vehicles. This will be achieved by backing the establishment of numerous local charging points, particularly benefiting individuals without the luxury of off-street parking.
The distribution of the LEVI funds will be executed in two batches. The first set of local authorities can start applying for their designated funds immediately, with the intention of allocation within this fiscal year. The subsequent batch of authorities will have the chance to apply for their funds in the upcoming financial year.
Ellesmere Port Transforms into UK EV Factory
– Ellesmere Port’s Vauxhall factory, with a history spanning nearly six decades, has been revitalized as a large-scale electric vehicle (EV) production facility. The factory, located in Cheshire by the River Mersey, is set to produce 50,000 electric vans annually. These vehicles will sport various badges, including Vauxhall, Opel, Peugeot, Citroën, and Fiat. Passenger car versions are slated for release next year.
Stellantis committed to a £100m investment in the plant in 2021, with an additional £30m allocated for upgrades, including new electricity generation. David Bailey, a business economics professor at the University of Birmingham, lauded the factory’s commencement as a significant uplift for the UK automotive sector. However, he cautioned about the potential implications of post-Brexit tariff rules.
Upcoming regulations by year-end could impose tariffs on electric car imports to the EU, the UK’s primary export market, unless they contain sufficient UK or EU components. This poses challenges given the current reliance on Chinese cells.
Germany Supports UK’s Push to Delay EV Tariffs
– Germany is urging the European Commission to delay the imposition of tariffs on electric vehicle (EV) sales between the UK and the EU, responding to concerns that such measures might be counterproductive.
This move aligns with the UK’s request for a three-year postponement of these duties. As per the current post-Brexit trade agreement, a 10% tariff will be levied on EVs transported across the Channel from January if their batteries are manufactured outside Europe.
Despite Brussels’ previous refusals to delay these tariffs, Germany, being the EU’s largest member, holds significant sway. The UK has consistently argued that introducing these tariffs prematurely would place undue financial strain on the regional industry, especially when competing against Chinese EV producers. Major European automakers have echoed these sentiments.
According to the Brexit trade deal’s “rules of origin,” to sidestep the upcoming duties, at least 60% of the EV batteries’ value and 45% of their total components must originate from the EU or the UK.
– However, Chinese imports, which are already subject to these tariffs, made up almost one-third of the UK’s new EV sales in 2022, and this figure is on the rise.
The current rules of origin could potentially make EVs less affordable for individual consumers and small businesses.
Ford, which is channeling €2bn into transforming its Cologne facility in Germany into an EV production plant and heavily depends on UK exports, is also against this tariff plan.
Honda and Acura Embrace Tesla’s NACS Charging Port by 2025
Honda and Acura have declared their commitment to embed the NACS (North American Charging Standard) port in their electric vehicles, following an agreement with Tesla. The first Honda EV sporting this port is slated for a 2025 release but we don’t know what that vehicle is. After its debut, all Honda and Acura EVs in North America will feature the NACS port. However, models like the Honda Prologue, launching before 2025, will retain the current Combined Charging System (CCS) port. Importantly, these earlier models are crafted to be NACS-compatible via an adapter, potentially allowing access to Tesla Superchargers down the line.
European Battery Firms Seek Increased EU Financial Aid
European metals and materials companies are appealing to the EU for enhanced financial backing to bolster the region’s battery sector. The push comes as these companies aim to stand their ground against formidable competitors from China and the US.
A key proposal from these companies is the establishment of a European Critical Minerals Fund. This fund, operating at the EU level, would have the capacity to finance companies directly.
Daytime EV Fast-Charging Now Free at Port Adelaide
Port Adelaide now offers free fast charging for EVs between 9am and 4pm. The change is part of several trials in South Australia, aiming to gauge consumer reactions to different pricing structures.
Early morning charging, from 5am to 9am, is billed based on the duration spent at the charger, costing 18c/minute. The exact cost per kWh depends on the vehicle’s charging speed.
The pricing structure might be an attempt to discourage prolonged charging. Often, users at free charging stations tend to charge their EVs up to 100%, even though charging rates significantly drop after reaching 80%. This can lead to longer charging times, inconveniencing others waiting in line.
The fast charger, equipped with ABB technology, is overseen by Chargefox and is part of the South Australian Smart Charging Trial.
HiPhi Debuts European Experience Center in Munich
Chinese luxury EV brand HiPhi has launched its inaugural overseas experience center in Munich, Germany. The newly unveiled centre, dubbed the “HiPhi Hub,” is strategically located at Munich International Airport’s main terminal street.
In Germany, the HiPhi X starts at 109,000 euros, while the HiPhi Z is priced from 105,000 euros. The first shipment of these cars has landed in Germany and will soon reach their new owners.
HiPhi is also on the brink of unveiling its next European experience center in Oslo, Norway.
EV Battery Prices on the Decline, Says Report
A decrease in EV battery prices might offset the impact of a price war initiated by Tesla in January, aimed at boosting demand. Battery material prices soared to unprecedented levels during the pandemic due to reduced borrowing costs fueling EV demand. However, these prices have been on a downward trend recently.
Biden’s $15.5B Boost for EV Transition
The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) has committed $15.5 billion in funds and loans to expedite the U.S.’s transition to electric vehicles (EVs). This substantial financial support is designed to retrofit existing factories for the EV shift, thereby fostering job creation. Of this, $2 billion is earmarked for grants and a potential $10 billion for loans targeting automotive conversion projects. Another $3.5 billion is dedicated to boosting domestic production of EV batteries and related materials. This initiative is in line with President Biden’s “Investing in America” strategy, unveiled in June 2023, which seeks to galvanize both public and private investments nationwide.
The “Domestic Manufacturing Conversion Grants for EVs,” valued at $2 billion, will provide co-funded grants to bolster local production of a range of EVs. This encompasses everything from light to heavy-duty EVs and their components, extending to assembly facilities for vehicles and parts. A pivotal goal of these grants is to ease the workforce’s shift to electric transportation. Emphasis will be placed on areas with a robust vehicle manufacturing legacy and projects that guarantee fair wages and respect collective bargaining rights. Concept papers are due by October 2, 2023, with full applications expected by December 7, 2023.
Under the “Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Loan Program,” the $10 billion loan allocation will back automotive conversion projects, particularly those preserving quality jobs in manufacturing hubs. The DOE will assess the economic outcomes of these projects, weighing factors such as local economic impact and projected employment.
The $3.5 billion reserved for advanced battery production will facilitate the development of new and updated domestic commercial facilities for battery components. The DOE’s Notice of Intent outlines this fund’s role in nurturing the domestic sector, supporting manufacturing workers, and promoting equity and environmental justice. It also underscores the commitment to backing automotive workers and candidates dedicated to creating well-compensated positions.
PHIL ROBERTS / ELECTRIC FUTURE
PORSCHE OF THE VILLAGE CINCINNATI
AUDI CINCINNATI EAST
VOLVO CARS CINCINNATI EAST
NATIONAL CAR CHARGING ON THE US MAINLAND AND ALOHA CHARGE IN HAWAII
DEREK REILLY FROM NEVO.IE AND THE NEVO EV REVIEW IRELAND YOUTUBE CHANNEL
OCTOPUS ELECTROVERSE GLOBAL PUBLIC CHARGING MADE SIMPLE WITH ONE APP AND ONE MAP.
LEASEPLAN ELECTRIC MOMENTS PROVIDING ALL THE TOOLS AND GUIDANCE EV DRIVERS NEED
RICHARD AT RSEV.CO.UK
JUKKA KUKKONEN FROM WWW.SHIFT2ELECTRIC.COM
BATTERY REPORTS FOR EVS AT RECURRENTAUTO.COM
JAN TORE GJØBY
ANDY NANCARROW AND LILIAN KASS
BRENDAN MCCARTHY AT NORTHFORK IRONWORKS
COLIN HENNESSY AND CAMBSEV
GARY A HAMMOND
IAN ‘STILL WATERS UK’ BENJAMIN
IAN (WATTIE) WATKINS
JAN FROM EMOBILITYNORWAY
JOHN VAN DEVOORT
JON AKA BEARDY MCBEARDFACE FROM KENT EVS
LAURENCE D ALLEN
NEIL E ROBERTS FROM SUSSEX EVS
PETER & DEE ROBERTS
REALTORS CHOICE PHOTOGRAPHY
ROB FROM THE RSTHINKS EV CHANNEL ON YOUTUBE
THE PLUGSEEKER’S EV YOUTUBE CHANNEL
THOMAS J. THIAS