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Tesla Reduces Global Staff by Over 10%

– Tesla announced in an internal email that it will cut “more than 10%” of its workforce, affecting at least 14,000 employees out of approximately 140,000.

– For some context on today’s breaking news, the company recently instructed managers to identify essential personnel while putting a halt to some stock rewards and cancelling certain annual employee reviews.

– In terms of vehicle production, the Gigafactory in Shanghai has been scaled back. Shift lengths for Cybertruck production at the Gigafactory Texas are being reduced.

– Early reports indicate that some employees have already lost access to company systems.

– This is the fifth significant cut since 2017, with previous reductions recorded at 2% in 2017, 9% in 2018, 7% in 2019, and 3% in 2022.

– Despite these reductions, Tesla’s employee base has grown significantly over the years, increasing from 38,000 in early 2018 to 140,000 by early 2024.

– The Electrek website noted two prominent Tesla executives, Drew Baglino and Rohan Patel, appear to no longer have the “Tesla-affiliated” badge on their Twitter profiles. But I would say that the official Tesla Twitter account also lacks the badge, so that appears to be more of a Twitter problem.

– Tesla is scheduled to release its quarterly profits report on Tuesday, April 23.

https://evne.ws/4axeob9

Temporary Stop on Cybertruck Deliveries Over Pedal Issue

– Tesla has notified numerous Cybertruck reservation holders of delivery delays due to an unspecified “unexpected delay.”

– Discussions on both the Cybertruck Owner’s Club website and X reveal that the delay stems from a design flaw with the Cybertruck’s accelerator pedal.  Unlike other Tesla models that have a hanging accelerator pedal, the Cybertruck features a floor-mounted pedal which requires drivers to exert both forward and upward pressure.

– Application of the accelerator appears to push the silver plastic cover off the pedal itself, but the design of the floor around the bulkhead means it can jam the pedal down in the fully depressed position.

– All Cybertruck deliveries have been temporarily suspended as Tesla engineers work to modify the pedal cover and remove any lubricant residue that may be present.

https://evne.ws/3xuZQKo

Tesla Halves Monthly Cost for Full Self-Driving Subscription

– Tesla has reduced the monthly subscription price for its Full Self-Driving (FSD) package by 50%, lowering it to $99 from the previous $199.

– The one-time purchase price for the Full Self-Driving suite remains unchanged at $12,000. This package includes features like Basic Autopilot, Enhanced Autopilot, Autosteer on city streets, and Traffic Light and Stop Sign Control.

– The subscription model offers all the same functionalities as the full purchase, providing an option for users to try the advanced driving features before committing to the full purchase price.

– All Tesla owners in the U.S. and Canada with the appropriate hardware are currently being offered a 1-month trial of the software in the hope some of them will turn into paid customers.

https://evne.ws/4azvhSr

GM Advances EV Strategy with $3.5 Billion Battery Plant in Indiana

– General Motors (GM) has announced plans are moving forward with the construction a $3.5 billion battery manufacturing facility in Indiana, near New Carlisle, reinforcing its commitment to electric vehicles (EVs).

– GM has initiated site preparations, including landscaping, constructing retention ponds, and installing utilities essential for the main building. Unlike previous partnerships with LG Chem for their Ultium brand, GM has chosen to collaborate with Samsung SDI this venture.  The new facility will produce both cylindrical and prismatic battery cells, aiming to enhance GM’s flexibility in EV production.

– Construction of the extensive battery cell factory is projected to start in 2025, with production commencing by 2027.

https://evne.ws/3xuZT92

California Powers Through with 100% Renewable Energy for Two Weeks

– California has achieved a significant milestone by supplying 100% of its energy demand exclusively from renewable sources—wind, solar, and hydro—for 25 out of the last 32 days.

– This unprecedented achievement was highlighted by Stanford University professor Mark Jacobson, who frequently updates on this development via his Twitter) account Historically, California has managed to meet its energy demand entirely through renewables only momentarily during exceptionally sunny days.

– The recent achievement marks the first time the state has maintained 100% renewable energy generation consistently over such an extended period, nearly two weeks.

https://evne.ws/3JhwZf8

Solar Dominates U.S. Power Capacity Additions for Six Consecutive Months

– We know that as grids deploy renewables around the world, the EVs we drive continue to get cleaner, something which can never be said for fossil cars. Solar energy has been the primary source of new U.S. electrical generating capacity for the sixth consecutive month, outpacing all other energy sources.

– According to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) “Energy Infrastructure Update” report as of February 2024, solar added 1,043 megawatts (MW), which is 83.64% of all new generating capacity.

– The remaining capacity additions for that period included 200 MW from the Horizon Hill Wind Project in Logan County, Oklahoma, accounting for 16.04%

– Over the first two months of 2024, solar contributed 78.50% (3,581 MW) and wind 20.34% (928 MW) of new generating capacity. Natural gas, oil, and other sources only added 53 MW combined.

– For the period from September 2023 to February 2024, solar was consistently the largest contributor to new generating capacity, with wind frequently in second place.

– Solar’s increasing contributions have raised its portion of the total installed utility-scale generating capacity to 8.21%, overtaking hydropower, which stands at 7.85%. Wind remains higher at 11.77%.

https://evne.ws/49DZDSs

Kia Incentivizes Dealers to Boost EV Sales, Potential Savings for Buyers

– Kia has introduced a financial incentive for dealers, offering up to $1,500 for each electric vehicle (EV) sold in April.

– The incentives are: $1,500 for every EV6 GT sold, $1,000 for each 2023 Kia EV6, $500 for the 2024 Kia EV6 models and the new EV9, and $250 for all other 2024 EV and plug-in hybrid models sold.

– These dealer incentives are retroactive, applying to sales from the beginning of April. The program, known as the Kia April 2024 Dealer Flat Cash Program, is designed to encourage dealers to prioritize selling EVs over gasoline-powered cars.

– The increased incentive for dealers might lead to better negotiation opportunities for consumers, potentially lowering the price of EVs on the lot.

– Current promotions for buyers include lease deals starting at $279 per month for the 2024 Kia EV6 and 0% financing offers on select EV9 models.

https://evne.ws/3Jhx1DM

Nio Unveils 2024 ET7 at Beijing Auto Show

– Nio is set to launch its updated 2024 ET7 sedan, the only model in its lineup pending an annual update, in 10 days.

– The launch is scheduled for April 25, coinciding with the opening day of the Beijing auto show; reservations for the sedan will start on April 16.  Externally, the 2024 ET7 will mirror the current model, but it will feature substantial interior enhancements, including two large screens installed in the rear of the vehicle.

– Nio also plans to initiate a range test for the ET7 using its new 150-kWh semi-solid-state battery on April 16.

– This test aims to demonstrate the car’s ability to travel 1,100 kilometers (approximately 683 miles) on a single charge, starting at 5:50 AM Beijing time, probably underway by the time you hear this.

https://evne.ws/49F3y1v

Jaguar Land Rover Adopts Chery’s EV Platform

– Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) plans to utilize Chery’s automotive platform for developing electric vehicles (EVs).

– This collaboration marks JLR as the first luxury car brand to adopt Chery’s platform. The agreement between JLR and Chery is nearing finalization, as reported by the Chinese local media outlet 36kr.

– JLR will introduce new EV models using both hybrid and all-electric platforms from Chery’s Exeed brand. The partnership benefits from a pre-existing joint venture between JLR and Chery in China, where each holds a 50% stake.

– According to 36kr, JLR will employ Exeed’s latest pure-electric platform, with the first model expected to launch in the latter half of 2024.

https://evne.ws/4aqpO0h

Construction Begins on Markham Vale Electric Forecourt

– More good news for my UK audience. Construction has officially commenced on the new Electric Forecourt® at Markham Vale, situated near Junction 29A of the M1.

– The facility will support simultaneous charging for up to 30 electric vehicles. Features High Power chargers with capacities up to 360 kW. The most recent major Electric Forecourt opening was as Gatwick Airport.

– The charging station is expected to open this coming winter.

https://evne.ws/3VUnzxV

Honda to Launch Ohio EV Production Hub in 2025

– Honda is transforming its central Ohio manufacturing facilities into an EV hub, set to begin operations in 2025.

– This development is supported by an investment exceeding $700 million, aimed at converting Honda’s central Ohio operations into a specialized EV manufacturing center.

– The Marysville plant is undergoing modifications to include a second production line dedicated to manufacturing Honda’s own EV designs.

– A new section within the Marysville plant will be dedicated to assembling the Intelligent Power Unit (IPU), which is essential for housing the EV’s power electronics and battery systems.

– Upon completion, the Marysville facility will supply IPUs to Honda’s other production site in East Liberty, Ohio, enhancing the integration of their EV manufacturing process.

– Additionally, Honda’s Anna, Ohio engine plant will be equipped with new machinery to produce IPU assembly cases. These cases will then be sent to Marysville for final assembly and installation in vehicles produced there and at East Liberty.

https://evne.ws/3Jhx4iW

Illinois Invests $25.1 Million in Expanding EV Charging Network

– Illinois is set to further strengthen its electric vehicle (EV) infrastructure by investing over $25 million in new charging stations across the state.

– Illinois Environmental Protection Agency announced the allocation of exactly $25.1m to support the installation of 643 new Direct Current Fast Charging (DCFC) ports across 141 locations.

– This funding, which benefits 20 applicants, is part of the Driving a Cleaner Illinois program and adds to the $12.6 million previously provided from Volkswagen Settlement funds aimed at developing more than 300 new EV fast charging ports in 2023.

– This investment will more than double the current number of fast charging ports, boosting the total by nearly 1,000, significantly improving the infrastructure for both local EV drivers and visitors.

https://evne.ws/3xv01W4

EU Commits €424 Million for Alternative Fuel Infrastructure Expansion

– The European Union has allocated over €424 million to fund 42 projects aimed at expanding alternative fuel infrastructure across Europe.

– These projects are funded under the Alternative Fuels Infrastructure Facility (AFIF), part of the Connecting Europe Facility (CEF), which focuses on enhancing European transport infrastructure.

– In the latest funding round, which was the fifth and final call of the first AFIF proposal with a submission deadline on November 7, 2023, the selected projects will receive financial backing.

– The grants are intended to be used in conjunction with major financial institutions to maximize the impact of the funding.

– Among the infrastructure to be developed are approximately 4,200 electric vehicle (EV) charging stations along the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T).

– Since 2021, AFIF has distributed over €1.3 billion, supporting the installation of 26,396 EV charging points and electrifying ground operations at 63 airports.

https://evne.ws/3xv02JC

Amazon Leads in Private EV Charging Infrastructure

– Amazon has now established over 17,000 electric vehicle (EV) chargers across approximately 120 U.S. warehouses, becoming the country’s largest private EV charging operator.

– These chargers are used primarily for powering Rivian delivery vans. Amazon’s advancement in EV adoption outpaces many of its competitors, partly due to its significant investment in Rivian, which includes an order for 100,000 custom-built vans, with 13,500 delivered so far.

– Chris Atkins, head of Amazon’s logistics sustainability teams, mentioned the challenges in preparing infrastructure for EVs, noting, “It was a bit of a surprise, how long we would need to prepare for the lead time for infrastructure.”

– In 2020, discussions with major U.S. utilities focused on Amazon’s power needs, leading to innovative solutions during the pandemic, such as Commonwealth Edison repurposing old transformers to meet Amazon’s requirements.

– In another example, by spring 2022, as Rivian started delivering large quantities of vans, additional power was routed to an Amazon warehouse in Chicago’s Pullman neighborhood, supporting about 1,100 chargers across four local warehouses.

https://evne.ws/49APLco

DFDS Advances Electrification of English Channel Ferries

– DFDS announced plans to introduce up to six battery-powered vessels on the English Channel, with the first two expected to be operational by 2030.

– The commitment to electrify cross-channel transport was reinforced during a meeting with the UK

– The choice to deploy electric vessels on the English Channel routes is due to the short distance between the UK and continental Europe, making these routes ideal for electric ferry operations.

– The English Channel is a major shipping corridor, accounting for 33% of trade between the EU and the UK, and linking two of the world’s largest economies.

– DFDS operates 12 routes that connect the UK with France, Germany, the Netherlands, Sweden, and Denmark, employing 3,300 people across five ports, several logistics offices, and three UK-flagged vessels.

https://evne.ws/4aCMQBk

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