TOP EV NEWS #1 – 1st BYTON EXPERIENCE STORE OPENED
Byton opened its first Byon Place experience store on the 20th of January 2019 in Shanghai, China. During the launch, Byton announced that it would employ a multi-disciplined sales direct sales model which will include the use of the Byton APP, official website, WeChat, call center and other online channels combined with physical outlets in the form of the experience stores and service centers. The second store will be opened in Chongqing by the middle of 2019 followed by up to 30 more in first and second-tier cities in China such as Beijing, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Nanjing, Hangzhou and Chengdu after which the company will expand to North America and Europe.
TOP EV NEWS #2 – NEW AND UPDATED EV MODELS
It was quite a busy week for me as I added another 30 new electric models to wattEV2buy, here is some news related to new EV models.
Japanese automaker teased the Honda Urban which is destined for the European market at the end of the year. Honda will unveil the Honda Urban prototype at the Geneva Auto Show which commence on the 7th of March 2019.
Aston Martin CEO tweeted a video of the first validation prototype of the Rapid E which will be developed in limited numbers later n 2019. Aston Martin will build only 155 units of the legendary British automakers first electric car which is estimated to be priced from $250,000. The rapid E which is developed in conjunction with Williams Engineering is equipped with an 800V battery providing a range in excess of 320km (200 miles).
BAIC listed the EX5 EV SUV which is developed on its third generation EV platform with a range of 415km (259 miles) and a 160kW electric motors. The EX5 is based on the ET400 concept SUV and is available in four models starting at ¥169,900 going up to ¥199,900 after subsidies.
JAC opened its book for reservations of the JAC iEVS4 EV which is based on the Refine S4 compact SUV.
TOP EV NEWS #3 – KANDI TO DELIVER 300,000 EVs FOR RIDESHARING
The NASDAQ listed Kandi Technologies announced that they had secured an agreement to provide 300,000 EVs to an ‘Online Ride-sharing Alliance’ in Hangzhou, the company’s hometown. Kandi which last week received approval from the municipality of Jiangsu to develop a new 50,000 unit EV plant in the City will deliver the 300,000 units over the next five years. The opportunity for Kandi arose out of the current chaos in the three million strong ride-hailing market, where 90% of the cars operate illegally. To operate as a driver for a ridesharing company you need a drivers license and an additional license to transport passengers. Furthermore, once you register your car in the ridesharing network, the insurance premium escalates with RMB10,000, which coupled with the requirement of an additional license leads to a 90% non-compliance rate currently. The benefit for authorities is that electric cars by Kandi can be switched off if not compliant.
TOP EV NEWS #4 – CHJ LEADING ONE IN TRACK FOR 2019 RELEASE
CHJ Automotive announced that it will open 13 retail stores for its new luxury EV brand called Leading Auto. The first vehicle from this stable, the Leading One is on track for delivery later this year. CHJ acquired Lifan Motors earlier for an amount of 650 million yuan, and in the process secured Lifan’s production qualification, allowing it to start producing EVs. The thirteen cities where CHJ Leading will open retail shops are Beijing, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, Tianjin, Chengdu, Chongqing, Suzhou, Hangzhou, Nanjing, Zhengzhou, Xi’an, and Wuhan
The co-founder of CHJ Li Xiang shared images of the plant where its range extended Leading One with a range of 1,000km (620miles) is produced indicating to his followers that the company is determined to bring the first car to market late 2019.
TOP EV NEWS #5 – HYUNDAI KONA EV PRICING IN THE USA
Hyundai announced pricing for it’s award-winning Kona Electric CUV this weekend. Sales for the Kona Electric in the USA will start in California followed by other ZEF states. Additional freight charges for the 2019 Hyundai Kona EV are $1,045. The 258 mile Hyundai Kona EV is available in three trims, the SEL, Limited and Ultimate.