Top 5 Electric Vehicle News Stories of Week 6 2018

Top 5 Electric Vehicle News Stories of Week 6 2018



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A year after Aston Martin‘s disastrous partnership with LeEco the British automaker is returning to China shopping for new partnerships. The failed partnership with LeEco, owner of Faraday Future, caused the delay of the delivery of Aston Martin’s first EV, the RapidE, from 2018 to 2019. In an interview with Bloomberg the CEO of Aston Martin, Andy Palmer, indicated that Aston Martin is not looking to produce EVs with its badge for the Chinese market but rather to collaborate on materials and technologies to improve the performance of its EVs. To this end, Aston Martin announced a 5-year trade and investment drive worth $860 million (£600 million). Palmer further indicated that it is considering using China’s largest battery maker, CATL, as the supplier for the RapidE. CATL this week raised $2 billion in a bid to become the worlds largest battery maker for EVs.

Hopefully, Aston Martin learned something from its misadventures with LeEco as its investments in the EV sector could only see returns from 2025.


Nissan‘s local partner in China, Dongfeng (DFL), announced its updated new midterm strategy named “DFL Triple One” this week for the period through 2022. Part of the RMB 60 billion plan, which aims to increase sales to 2.6 million units, is to develop more than 20 electric models with plug-in and pure electric powertrains across all brands over the five-year period which will equate to 30% of all DFL sales. The rollout will start with six models in 2018 and 2019 across the Nissan, Venucia and Dongfeng brands. INFINITI will have 25% of its portfolio electrified in 2022, transitioning to 100% by 2025.

The”DFL Triple One” plan will also target Leading Intelligent Mobility technology advancement through deploying Advanced Driver Assistance System (ADAS), ProPILOT, e-parking and connectivity technologies in all brands in China. It is expected to introduce level 1 and level 2 autonomous driving technologies starting with the Venucia brand in 2019, depending on the relaxation of regulations by the Chinese Government.

DFL TRIPLE ONE Plan aligns fully with DFG Plan 2020 as well as Nissan’s midterm plan, Nissan M.O.V.E. to 2022.

Dongfeng-top 5 ev news Week-6-2018


Hyundai Motor has released a teaser image of its first fully-electric subcompact SUV ahead of the official unveiling on February 27 at the Geneva Auto Show. Hyundai Motor will release the Kona EV SUV in the summer of 2018 becoming the first automotive brand across Europe to make an all-electric subcompact SUV available to everyone. The All-New Kona Electric will feature two different powertrain versions offering customers one of the most powerful electric engines on the market with a class-leading range of almost 470km/293miles (internal target under WLTP regulations). The 2018 Hyundai Kona will include a wide range of convenience and connectivity features as well as active safety and driving assistance technologies.

Polestar, the Volvo performance brand, announced the release date and pricing data for the Polestar 2 pure EV sedan targeted at the Tesla Model 3. The Polestar 2 and the Polestar 3 SUV will be available in left and right-hand drive form. Polestar will launch the Polestar 2 in the second half of 2019 and production will begin around the start of 2020. Around 50,000 units of the EV sedan will be produced annually and sold through exclusive Polestar stores and the internet at a price of around €40,000 (£35,000).

Automotive News China reported that SAIC would launch an electric crossover targeted at the Tesla Model X by the end of 2018. The SAIC Crossover will accelerate to a speed of 100 km/h (62 mph) within 4.9 seconds and will be equipped with such as features automatic parking, according to information SAIC disclosed on its website.


Mercedes Benz launched the 3rd generation of its popular Sprinter LDV this week. The Sprinter sold over 3.4 million vehicles in 130 countries and will now be available from 2019 with an electric drivetrain as the Mercedes eSprinter LDV. The new eSprinter which can be configured for over 1,700 custom purposes and is standard equipped with Mercedes PRO connect solution providing fleet managers with a tool to connect with all drivers and vehicles in his/her fleet.



Renault announced that the cumulative EV sales for Renault, Nissan, and Mitsubishi from 2010 is 540,623 with Nissan leading with more than 300,000 vehicles since December 2010 and Renault following with 150,000 units, making the alliance the global leader for 100% electric passenger cars and light commercial electric vehicles. Sales for 2017 was up 11% from the year before reaching 91,000 units for the year, short of BAIC and Tesla. Already the new Nissan LEAF received over 40,000 orders globally including 13,000 orders in Japan; 13,000 reservations in the United States; and over 12,000 orders in Europe. Nissan also announced the launch of the Leaf in Australia, Hong Kong, Malaysia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Korea and Thailand. The company is also exploring introducing the zero-emission car in other markets in the region, including Indonesia and the Philippines.

Toyota announced that it sold 1.5 million electrified vehicles in 2017, up 8% from 2016. The figure is however misleading as only 51,000 is attributable to the Prius PHEV, the only EV according to our definition off electric vehicles. A further 2,700 units are attributed to the Mirai FCEV. Note the lack of pure electric EVs.


Aurora, the company which already partnered with VW and Hyundai to develop self-driving systems this week joined the list of suppliers for the Byton Concept EV unveiled at the 2018 CES. At the time Byton announced that the first models will be partially autonomous, providing advanced driver assistance systems, with full autonomy to be enabled from 2020 through a software upgrade. Aurora was co-founded by Chris Urmson and Sterlin Anderson, the former heads of Alphabet Inc’s Google’s self-driving program and Tesla’s autopilot program.

Lyft, the American ride-hailing company, expanded its self-driving program by opening offices in Munich where it will develop advanced localization and geometric mapping technologies.


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UK EV sales for the first quarter 2017 set new records, mostly on the back of Tesla sales. The quarter’s sales bring EV’s contribution up to 1.4% of the total vehicle fleet. The UK sales for Q1, traditionally the best performing quarter for UK car sales, was closely watched as a new Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) comes into play from the first of April 2017. The new VED rules apply for all vehicles except zero emission vehicles (ZEV). According to the VED, Internal Combustion Engine vehicles (ICE) will be liable for a levy of £1,550 spread over five years on all vehicles priced over £40,000.

Electric vehicle sales for March, which contributed nearly 70% of the quarter’s sales, rose a below average 7% on a year-to-year basis, lower than the 8.4% for the total new car market. Total EV sales for the quarter was around 11,900 units, some 880 units more than Q1 2016. A deeper analysis of the UK electric vehicle sales showed a significant rise of the Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) component, rising 34%, or around 800 units in March from the year before. Most of the 800 units can be attributed to Tesla’s massive sales drive, which led to a record 25,000 units being sold internationally, of which nearly 900, triple February’s sales, was sold in the UK during March 2017.

The improved performance of BEV vehicles compared to Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEV), showing a decrease of 5% to just under 5,000 units, corrects a trend since 2016 which saw 3-in-4 electric vehicles in the UK being PHEV’s.

All indications are that UK EV sales will breach the 100,000 unit mark, shared by only seven other countries within the next couple of months. Recent surveys in the UK showed that most vehicle buyers are negative towards diesel vehicles due to diesel gate, a spectacular own goal by big auto and that 85% of vehicle owners now consider buying an EV, subject to them overcoming these EV related misconceptions.

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The article was first posted in wattEV2Buy’s Top 5 EV News Week 14.

German EV sales sky-rockets 77% year-on-year

German EV sales sky-rockets 77% year-on-year

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German EV sales sky-rockets 77% year-on-year

EV sales in Germany nearly doubled to around 10,100 units from a year ago when only 5,700 electric vehicles were sold. Battery Electric Vehicles (BEV) outsold Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEV) by 10% on the back of strong sales of the new Renault Zoe Z.E. 40. The New Zoe has an NEDC range of 248mi / 400km, which is more likely an EPA (real world) range of 190mi / 300km.

german-ev-sales-q1 2017 graph

The worst-performing models were the VW Golf GTE, selling over 80% less than a year ago, the VW e-Golf, selling 43% less and the BMW X5 XDrive40e losing 33% of its sales. The Nissan Leaf also underperformed, partly due to the New Renault ZOE and partly due to a new version being expected later the year.

The BMW i3 took the second position with nearly 1100 units sold, of which 62% were the BEV version, an opposite scenario as for the same period last year when 68% of all BMW i3s sold were the range extending version.

New models for the quarter includes the Opel Ampera-e (Chevy Bolt), Hyundai Ioniq Electric, Mini Countryman, BMW 530e, BMW 740e, Tesla Model X, Mercedes-Benz GLC350e and E350e. The best performers from the newcomers were the Tesla Model X, a BEV and Mercedes-Benz GLC350e, a PHEV. The worst performers were the two new BEVs, the Opel Ampera-e and Hyundai Ionic, both selling only 68 units each. The BMW 530e was the worst performing new PHEV, with only 62 units sold.

The worst performing brands were VW, Porsche, and Nissan, which incidentally were the only brands losing market share in this record breaking quarter. Of further significance is that both Porsche and VW are indigenous to Germany. Even including Audi’s sales data to that of VW and Porsche still puts the VW Group at the bottom of the list with a mediocre 2.2% growth year-on-year.

All-in-all the Q1 2017 sales data points to a record-breaking year for the German EV market, which could help it ascend from its 9th position on the list of Global EV sales by country, should UK EV sales flounder.

Table of Q1 EV Sales in Germany.

what ev to buy ev sales germany q1 2017

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