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This weeks latest EV news 20-11-2022

This weeks latest EV news 20-11-2022

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Edinburgh is set to accommodate Europe's largest EV charging hub

edinburgh charging hub

Plans are underway for the installation of around 800 EV chargers at a Scottish office development, which would make it the largest electric car charging facility in Europe. Known as the Edinburgh Green proposal, this would be open and accessible for public charging. This would also include up to 800,000 sq. ft of office space surrounded by existing landscaped grounds and a pond. Presently, the Energy Superhub based in Oxford is the largest EV charging facility in Europe. The plans for Edinburgh's Green Plan would be built within the existing establishments of Drummond House and Edinburgh Park. The proposal plans are being managed by Shelborn Asset Management, which has owned the site since 2021.

The project is also set to accommodate more than 7,000 employees. Construction could start as early as summer 2023, with the project's completion around 2026. Initially, there are set to be 170 EV charging spaces, with another 595 set for future use. The EV charging points will be available for evening and weekend use, which may aid nearby residents and businesses. These infrastructure plans come together to work with the existing transport mobility hub in Edinburgh.

China is stirring up the EV market with 5-star electric vehicles

production line china

EV manufacturers in China are set to disrupt the EV market with their recent 5-star NCAP (European New Car Assessment Programme) ratings. There have been increasing numbers of Chinese electric car manufacturers raising the bar with impressive NCAP ratings recently. Next to Tesla, achieving the highest results for safety, security, and incorporating protective vehicle features. China is going way beyond the standard legal requirements for vehicle safety, they are clearly raising the bar for all manufacturers of new vehicles. The new vehicle market is set to become increasingly competitive leading up to 2030 with the ban on the sale of petrol/ diesel vehicles. This makes EVs and hybrids the first choice for consumers as manufacturers close in on the electric vehicle market.

China's increasing focus on their NCAP ratings follows their reputation from earlier failures in 2006 and 2007, which likely followed them. This is followed by fleet ratings and standards becoming stricter, a huge corporate market for EV manufacturers is now also implementing electric vehicles. Due to sustainability goals set by government departments across the globe, the rental vehicle market has seen increasing demand for EVs. Due to recent supply chain shortages, European manufacturers have implemented price increases for the sale of electric vehicles, which has given China a market opportunity to gain more market share.

By 2030, Inovev estimates EVs will make up to 40% of Europe's new car sales, and Chinese manufacturers will hold at least a 12.5% to 20% market lead with sales in excess of 725,000 and 1.16 million vehicles.

Public smart charging trails save EV drivers money

car charging on street

A recent trail conducted by The Agile Streets Project saw a range of partners collaborate to deliver a trail with 100 Connected Kerb on-street EV chargers around 17 sites across four local councils; Shropshire, Glasgow, Hackney, and East Lothian, saving the average EV user around £604.65 per year in comparison to non-smart charging. Conducted over the course of half a year, this allowed for around 2,451 EV charging sessions with a total of 51,618 kWh of energy used.

This trail has helped local authorities understand the efficiency of smart charging in public use for electric vehicles. As a collective this may conclude savings of around £4.1bn if implemented by local authorities combined. EV users on the trail could choose between charging at "ECO," which costs around 19 p/kWh and charges at the lowest cost times of the day, and charging at "Boost," which costs around 33 p/kWh and provides more power.

The trail project also involved companies like Samsung Research, Octopus Energy for Business, SMETS Design Limited, Energy Saving Trust, and the Power Networks Distribution Centre. This trail helped reinforce the benefits of public smart electric charging and the ability for more EV users to have better access to public authorities charging infrastructure, which has been a common constraint. Locally, the issue of charging EVs has been a popular topic for motorists, with some areas' limited access to charging facilities making it near impossible. This project incorporates "curbside" charging with many charge points fitted from lampposts, lessening the worry and difficulty of charging EVs in built up areas.

A new production record is set by an EV manufacturing facility

Volkswagen production plant germany

Volkswagen's German production plant in Zwickau has seen record numbers of electric vehicles pass through its doors in an attempt to diversify and scale up its EV market share. The production record was seen at 7,100 in a single week, combining the makes and models produced from 7th -11th November.

The Zwickau plant also produces the Audi Q4 e-tron and Q4 e-tron Sportback, as well as Cupra models such as the Cupra Born. Volkswagen is also said to be ramping up production at their other facilities, meaning the EV market probably underestimated their commitment and intentions. Recent company sales reports reflect the increase in EVs such as the Audi e-tron, VW ID.3, Porsche Taycan, Cupra, and Seat models.

Local Council to Launch 100 EV Charging Stations in Collaboration with Infrastructure Provider

local councillors Manchester

Manchester's local authority plans to install 100 new electric vehicle charging bays in and around Manchester, including at Flixton, Thorley Lane, and Brown Street, as well as two charging bays at Longford Park. These plans follow a Department of Transport study that found the North West has the fewest public charging points per 100,000 population of any region in the UK.

Chris Morris, Director of Transport, Highways, and Environment at Trafford Borough Council, said: "The aim of this roll-out is to create dependable, fair access to public EV charging across the borough. We want to build the infrastructure that encourages everybody to go electric, even if they can’t charge at home. The team at Be.EV uses street-level data to really drill into neighbourhoods and find the locations that make the biggest difference locally. Building bigger hubs that ensure there’s always a free space is part of that strategy".

Italian manufacturer unveils its first EV with 152 horsepower

Fiat 500 Abarth driving

Abarth fans have been patiently waiting for the release of its sport EV hatch, and not surprisingly, it doesn't disappoint. Figures reveal it has an output of around 152 bhp; the variant of the Fiat 500 Electric is fitted with a ramped up motor, adding 35 bhp compared to the Fiat Electric. The battery remains at 42 kWh, the same as the Fiat model, and this increased performance can see 0-62 in around 7.0 seconds. 

Olivier François, CEO for Fiat and Abarth, said: "The new Abarth 500e is one of the most exciting launches in the history of the brand and a great new addition to the Abarth line-up." I like to think of it as family, so our fanbase will be involved in every step of our electrification journey." The Abarth will start to hit the roads in mid-2023, available in colours including "Acid Green" or "Poison Blue," with 18-inch alloy wheels, steel drivers' pedals, and a glass roof.

Mazda sets up an investment boost for EV production

Mazda MX-30 driving on road

Japanese manufacture Mazda is set for an investment of around £9 billion in its plan to ramp up its production of electric drive units to support its demand. This includes investments from Mazda Imasen Electric Drive to develop inverters and MCF Electric Drive for its EV motors. The joint venture is also with MHHO electric drive.

Speaking of the investment, Mazda's chief executive explained the investment was to renew the focus required following recent projected EV sales, which include a 40% increase in global production by 2030. This is an increase of 25% from the previous estimates in the market. 

Its also estimated that around 60% to 75% of the vehicle market will still require internal combustion vehicles, but drawing closer to 2030, Mazda has a fully-fledged electrification plan. There are three phases to Mazda's research and development that are set to outline its production plans in preparation for electrification.

Phase one: up to 2024, focusing on OEM (original equipment manufacturer) technology upgrades in research and development while also strengthening Mazda's growth path to be ready to deal with another economic crisis or pandemic that may affect production or material sourcing. 

Phase two:  between 2025 and 2027, the continuation of profits from ICE vehicles while improving the financial base for EV production and development, focusing on cost competitiveness while launching battery electric vehicles into a competitive market.

Phase three: In this phase, the main focus is on battery-powered EVs solely. Rivalling other close manufactures such as Toyota and Nissan. 

Mazda plans currently to boost sales further with its recent launch of the new CX-60 SUV the first plug-in hybrid (PHEV) together with the CX-80 SUV. The MX-30 is already drawing attention and is set to feature a petrol-powered, extending range motor.

Discounts in Australia are discussed for low-emission vehicle purchases

tesla driving on road

This week, there have been discussions about a discount on the sale of new electric and hybrid vehicles in the Australian Parliament from MPs. This is to address the recent mention of tax breaks ending for EV and hybrid owners in 2025, which has caused frustration in the EV market. The electric car discount was a recent proposition by Labour and would mean thousands of pounds saved for future EV customers.

This has been opposed by the coalition, which estimated it would add a $4.5 billion hole to the budget. Other discussions have taken place about how to assist Australia's transition to hybrid and electric vehicles. Following a recent agreement, the tax office will be issuing new guidance on when home charging infrastructure, which can cost thousands of dollars, can be claimed back.