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August 14, 2017
MAZDA TO INTRODUCE “BREAK THROUGH’ GASOLINE ENGINE
Mazda Motor Corporation announced plans to introduce a new gasoline engine called SKYACTIV-X, which uses compression ignition. The announcement was part of the Sustainable Zoom-Zoom 2030 plan, which is the company’s long-term vision for its technology development.

SKYACTIV-X engine will be the first commercial gasoline engine that uses compression ignition (Spark Controlled Compression Ignition method), that allows for the fuel-air mixture to ignite spontaneously when compressed by the piston.

The new engine uses the best aspects of gasoline and diesel engines, as well as a supercharger to help improve fuel economy, power and performance. Torque is increased by 10-30 per cent, and engine efficiency improves by 20-30 per cent over the SKYACTIV-G engine. Fuel efficiency is expected to be equal or better than the SKYACTIV-D diesel engine.


July 31, 2017
MINI EV ON THE WAY

BMW Group has announced that a battery electric version of its MINI three-door model will go into production in 2019. MINI will offer a gasoline, diesel, and PHEV version as well.

The announcement is part of the company’s NUMBER ONE > NEXT strategy, in which all brand and models can be electrified with a EV or PHEV. BMW plans to bring more electrified models in the coming years.

MINI Cooper 3-Door (non-EV)
“BMW Group Plants Dingolfing and Landshut play a leading role within our global production network as the company’s global competence centre for electric mobility,” said Oliver Zipse, BMW AG Management Board member for Production. “Our adaptable production system is innovative and able to react rapidly to changing customer demand. If required, we can increase production of electric drivetrain motor components quickly and efficiently, in line with market developments.”

BMW Group also will be launching other EV vehicles in the near future, with the i8 Roadster in 2018, X3 EV in 2020, and iNEXT in 2021.


July 31, 2017
ELECTRIC SALES QUOTAS TO INCREASE COST OF CONVENTIONAL VEHICLES: STUDY
According to Viewpoint published by the Montreal Economic Institute, electric vehicle sales quotas will increase the cost of conventional vehicles. MEI finds that consumers will pay $1,100 extra for conventional vehicles, in what amounts to being a tax.

"This extra cost will put upward pressure on car prices in Quebec and reduce car sales. This de facto tax is in fact a regressive one, since poorer households wanting to buy cheaper vehicles will face relatively steeper price increases than households with higher incomes acquiring more luxurious vehicles," said Germain Belzile, Senior Associate Researcher at the MEI and author of the publication.

Beginning in 2018 model year, OEMs will have to accumulate credits, equal to 3.5 per cent of sales, and increasing to 22 per cent in 2025, of how many vehicles they sell are electric or hybrid. Those who do not meet the number of credits they need can buy them from other OEMs who have a surplus or from the government.

"It is likely that carmakers will fall short of these targets, especially since the quota of 3.5 per cent for 2018 is above the present share of total motor vehicle sales that are electrics and hybrids, which stands at 1.08 per cent," said Belzile.

MEI finds that for 2018 the extra cost for a vehicle will be $175, but that will go up to $1,100 for 2025. MEI believes that OEMs who produce only electric and hybrid vehicles, and those who sell below 4,500 vehicles are the winners with this policy.

"Given these serious shortcomings, the government should think again and abandon its electric vehicle sales quota policy," said Belzile.

For more, visit MEI web site at: www.iedm.org/e.


July 10, 2017
AJAC HOSTS SIXTH ANNUAL ECORUN

(Photo credit: AJAC)
The Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC) held its sixth annual EcoRun across two provinces this year.

>> read more


July 10, 2017
VOLVO ELECTRIFIES AUTOMOBILE STRATEGY
Volvo Cars will offer an electric motor on all vehicles from 2019 on.

“This is about the customer,” said Håkan Samuelsson, President and Chief Executive. “People increasingly demand electrified cars and we want to respond to our customers’ current and future needs. You can now pick and choose whichever electrified Volvo you wish.”

Volvo's electrified strategy includes fully electric, plug-in hybrid and mild hybrid vehicles. Between 2019 and 2021, it plans to launch five full EV models (three Volvo models and two high performance Polestar models).

Volvo plans to have climate neutral manufacturing operations by 2025, as part of its carbon emissions reduction plan for products and operations.


July 4, 2017
ELECTRIC VEHICLE SUBSIDIES INEFFECTIVE
Subsidizing electric vehicle purchases is the most expensive and least efficient way to reduce GHG emissions according to an Economic Note from the Montreal Economic Institute (MEI).

“It’s just a waste,” said Germain Belzile, Senior Associate Researcher at the MEI and Co-Author of the publication. “Not only do these programs cost taxpayers a fortune, but they also have little effect on GHG emissions.”

Currently Ontario provides a subsidy of up to $14,000 towards the purchase of an EV or PHEV vehicle, while Quebec is $8,000. This works out to $523 per tonne of GHG not emitted in Ontario, and $288 in Quebec.

“Between the different incentive measures that produce the same results, the most expensive option should never be favoured,” said Belzile. “Subsidizing the purchase of electric vehicles represents without a doubt the worst option among current solutions.”

MEI finds that the same amount of reduction costs $18 per tonne through the existing carbon market, and $10 to $50 per tonne through the upcoming federal carbon tax.

“The real costs are probably even higher, since half of buyers of electric vehicles would make their purchases even without the subsidy,” said Mark Milke, Independent Policy Analyst and Co-Author of the publication. “Those subsidies are therefore a pure loss, with no resulting reduction in GHGs.”

Ultimately, the incentives have the Ontario government paying 29 times the carbon market, and 52 times the upcoming federal tax for each tonne of GHG reduced; in Quebec that comes out to 16 and 29 times, respectively.

“The Quebec and Ontario governments have to face facts. Subsidies for the purchase of electric vehicles not only have little effect on GHG emissions, but they also cost taxpayers a lot of money. Common sense, both economically and ecologically speaking, argues in favour of reducing these subsidies, and even eliminating them,” said Milke.

The entire Economic Note can be found at: iedm.org/71215-are-electric-vehicle-subsidies-efficient.


June 23, 2017
EVOTO RENTALS OFFERS TESLA MODEL X
Evoto Rentals, launched earlier this year, now offers Tesla Model X vehicles as part of its fleet. Currently operating in Montreal, Quebec, Evoto plans to expand to Toronto, Ottawa and Vancouver in the future.

Evoto rents Tesla Model S and Model X, and in the future the Model 3. They are rented through evoto.ca or over the phone. Free delivery and pick up, charging, unlimited mileage, and adding a second driver are all part of the rental experience.

Evoke uses a paperless online billing system and rates begin at $350/per day. A chauffeur service with the vehicle is available for minimum four hours at $90/hour. For those with kids, an electric kids car, the Tesla Mini S is also available.


June 12, 2017
EV2017 CONFERENCE OUTLINES ELECTRIFIED FUTURE

Electric Mobility Canada hosted the EV2017 Conference and Trade Show at the Hilton Toronto in Markham, Ontario recently.

>> read more


May 26, 2017
NEW QUEBEC PROGRAM MAKES PREOWNED LEAFS MUCH TO BE DESIRED
Nissan has announced that Pre-owned LEAF vehicles will be available for purchase or lease in Quebec with a $4,000 incentive as part of the province’s Drive Electric program. Qualifying vehicles are 2013 or 2014 model year and registered outside of Quebec. Any LEAF vehicles coming from the U.S. will need to be modified to Canadian regulations.

“The Nissan LEAF Qualified Pre-Owned Program is another demonstration of Nissan’s pledge to create intelligent mobility solutions, by broadening the accessibility and practicality of electric vehicles,” says Joni Paiva, president of Nissan Canada Inc.

The program is designed to contribute to the Quebec government's goal of 100,000 electric and plug in hybrid vehicles on its roads by 2020.


May 22, 2017
PLUG’N DRIVE OPENS EV DISCOVERY CENTRE

Plug’n Drive officially opened its Electric Vehicle Discovery Centre in Toronto, Ontario. The facility is the world’s first experiential learning facility dedicated to EV education and awareness.

"The EV Discovery Centre will serve as an EV hub for consumers throughout Ontario and for visitors from around the world,” said Cara Clairman, President and CEO, Plug’n Drive. "We are providing a one-stop-shop where consumers can explore and test-drive the latest EV models – alongside charging solutions at home and on the road."


The EV Discovery Centre is aims to help accomplish the goal of Ontario's Climate Change Action Plan, which aims to expand EV sales to five per cent of all new vehicles sold by 2020.

"We are investing proceeds from Ontario's carbon market into Plug'n Drive's Electric Vehicle Discovery Centre to encourage more Ontarians to make the switch to low-carbon transportation and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions,” said Minister Glen Murray. "As part of Ontario's Climate Change Action, we are helping to tackle emissions from the transportation sector, which is the single-largest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the province."

The centre provides visitors with the knowledge they need to consider an EV as their next vehicle.


May 22, 2017
MAGNA INVESTS IN AI RESEARCH FACILITY
Magna has committed to investing $5 million into Vector Institute, a Canandian independent AI facility located in Toronto.

"The automotive world is changing rapidly, reacting and innovating in response to massive technological advances," said Don Walker, CEO, Magna International. "Canada is a leader in the potential game-changers of machine learning and AI, and we want to be at the forefront of its advancements in the automotive sector."

Vector will be dedicated to exploration of AI, specializing in transformative fields of deep learning and machine learning. Magna's AI strategy encompasses two key areas: manufacturing and autonomous driving.


May 22, 2017
LYFT TO PARTNER WITH WAYMO
Lyft and Waymo have partnered to help launch self-driving vehicles.

“We can confirm that we are partnering with Waymo to safely and responsibly launch self-driving vehicle pilots. Waymo holds today’s best self-driving technology, and collaborating with them will accelerate our shared vision of improving lives with the world’s best transportation,” said a Lyft spokesperson.

Both hope the collaboration will help to accelerate the way people use transportation; namely self-driving vehicles.

“We’re looking forward to working with Lyft to explore new self-driving products that will make our roads safer and transportation more accessible. Lyft’s vision and commitment to improving the way cities move will help Waymo’s self-driving technology reach more people, in more places,” said a Waymo spokesperson.


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