S1 E6: Nikola Motor going all electric, VW Group surprised by Model 3 cost, Porsche European charging network, Volvo’s Polestar 2 event, Tesla’s Sentry Mode, and a ton more

What’s going on everyone. Welcome back to the All Things EV Podcast. In S1 E6 I cover Nikola Motor Company going all electric, VW Group surprised by Model 3 cost, Porsche expanding their European charging network, Volvo’s electric Polestar 2 event, Tesla’s Sentry Mode, and a ton more.

Let’s dive in.

Nikola recognizes the advantages of BEVs. Will skip FCVs at some point?

Nikola Motor Company announces BEV versions of their hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, Nikola Two and Nikola Tre (the European version). They will offer 500 kWh, 750 kWh, and 1 mWh packs. The 1 mWh pack is expected to give the semi a 400 mi (640 km) range in ideal conditions and 300 mi (480 km) in colder weather.

BEV @ 80,000 lbs. uses ~ 2.25 kWh per mile in real weather and normal hills on routes. 1MWh gets about 400 miles. Only 90% battery is useable. In cold weather, you get 300 miles / 1Mwh. Takes 69,000 “21700” cells @ 68grams = 1MWh. 10.5k weight in cells. 20k truck weight2) Fuel cell 80 kg H2 gets 7-10 miles per kg and uses same 2.25 kWh per mile as BEV. Fuel cell weight 15k -17k so about 3k – 5k pounds less than BEV. Fuel Cell can’t be beat long haul and BEV is good option for short haul. World needs both. ICE is enemy, not hydrogen or BEV”

Source: https://apple.news/A7HlnDLCHNSqaj5BXRyOqiA

Tesla Model 3 cost surprised Porsche and Audi after reverse-engineering

An article from Electrek shares Now a new report from Germany’s Manager Magazin (German and paywall) includes a deep dive into the state of Audi with comments from executives and insider sources.

It claims that Porsche and Audi, who are working together on a next-generation electric platform, had to change their approach because the cost was too high compared to what Tesla is achieving.

They report: The next-gen platform called Premium Platform Electric (PPE) was greenlighted almost two years ago and it is expected to be ready around 2020 or 2021.

Source: https://apple.news/Aa3R7hxibQO2b0ZE45BvsUA

Porsche's Charging Network Now Expands to 12 Countries and 49,000 Stations

InsideEVs reports that Porsche is expanding its Porsche Charging Service – launched in May 2018 – to five new countries, which will enable access to more than 49,000 charging points under single contract, through Porsche ID card or smartphone app.

The service was initially available in Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Denmark, the Netherlands, Belgium and Finland, and now also in Norway, France and Spain. Great Britain and Italy will follow shortly, which will bring total number to 12 countries.

Porsche Charging Service cost €2.50 ($2.85) per month in Germany, plus fees for using the charging points, which depends on particular provider, charging station and amount of electricity

Source: https://apple.news/Ans037kBPRzCn4br79onqhA

Audi says it has over 20,000 reservations for e-tron electric SUVs

Electrek: Audi announced that “more than 20,000 customers worldwide have already made advance reservations” for the e-tron, its new all-electric SUV – though most of them still have to wait a few months before delivery.

The German automaker confirmed the number during a delivery ceremony where Audi’s new CEO, Bram Schot, gave the keys of an e-tron to Winfried Kretschmann, Minister-President of Germany’s federal state of Baden-Württemberg, for a test drive.

Source: https://electrek.co/2019/02/14/audi-e-tron-electric-suv-20000-reservations/

Mercedes-Benz says its first electric EQC SUV is already sold out for the year

Electrek: Mercedes-Benz says its first next-generation all-electric vehicle, the EQC electric SUV, is already sold out for this year and “probably” even next year, but it doesn’t confirm the actual production capacity.

Source: https://electrek.co/2019/02/14/mercedes-benz-eqc-electric-suv-sold-out/

Electric cars are already cheaper to own and run, says study

The Guardian: Electric cars are already cheaper to own and run than petrol or diesel alternatives in five European countries analysed in new research.

The study examined the purchase, fuel and tax costs of Europe’s bestselling car, the VW golf, in its battery electric, hybrid, petrol and diesel versions. Over four years, the pure electric version was the cheapest in all places – UK, Germany, France, Netherlands and Norway – owing to a combination of lower taxes, fuel costs and subsidies on the purchase price.

Researchers from the International Council for Clean Transportation (ICCT) said their report showed that tax breaks are a key way to drive the rollout of electric vehicles and tackle climate change and air pollution.

Source: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/feb/12/electric-cars-already-cheaper-own-run-study

Volvo teases Polestar 2 electric car with new picture ahead of unveiling

Electrek: Volvo is again teasing the Polestar 2, its first all-electric car, with yet another a new picture ahead of the unveiling planned for later this month.

When Volvo rebranded Polestar two years ago, it was off to a somewhat awkward but interesting start as it unveiled its first vehicle, the Polestar 1.

The car turned out to be a highly expensive plug-in hybrid, which quickly sounded outdated when the automaker announced that they would bring an all-electric “Tesla Model 3 competitor” to production a year later.

The company is talking about making only electric vehicles going forward:

Over the past two months, the automaker has been releasing images and details of the vehicle ahead of the unveiling.

Source: https://apple.news/AA-UgT6EIQHKnSdqUlKPwNA

Tesla releases Sentry Mode with surround video recording and blaring musical alarms

Teslarati: Tesla’s Sentry Mode update has started rolling out to members of the company’s early access program, together with an improved dashcam feature that enables side camera recordings and a pet-friendly Dog Mode. With the feature enabled, Tesla’s vehicles would be able to record video feeds from their external cameras to constantly monitor their surroundings. 

As noted by Tesla in a blog post, Sentry Mode has three states. Upon activation, Sentry Mode enters a “Standby” state, using the video feeds from the vehicles’ multiple cameras to monitor and detect potential threats. In the event that a minimal threat is detected — such as a person leaning into the vehicle — Sentry Mode would shift to an “Alert” state, displaying a visible warning on the center display and stating that cameras are recording. 

If a determined thief still opts to break into the car by smashing a window, Sentry Mode enters an “Alarm” state. This immediately activates the vehicles’ alarm, maximizes the brightness of the center display for some glare, and plays music at maximum volume. This state is aimed at attracting immediate attention to the vehicle, with the added bonus of (hopefully) disorienting a would-be thief enough so that the robbery attempt would potentially be abandoned.

When a vehicle enters the “Alarm” state, owners will receive an alert from their Tesla mobile app informing them that an incident has occurred. Owners would then be able to download a video recording of the incident that begins 10 minutes before the threat was detected by the vehicle, provided that they have a USB drive plugged into their electric car before the security feature was activated.

It should be noted that Sentry Mode, at least at its current iteration, must be activated every time an owner wishes to use the feature. To do this, users must navigate to Controls > Safety & Security > Sentry Mode. Sentry Mode is starting its rollout to Model 3 vehicles, quickly followed by Model S and X that were manufactured after August 2017.

Source: https://apple.news/ASc9k7JuYR4ypvezMTpstYw

Shell continues green energy acquisitions with home battery/EV charger company Sonnen

Electrek: Shell has announced its acquisition of Sonnen, a German company that specializes in home energy storage. Mostly known for its home battery packs, Sonnen also expanded into home EV charging last year. What does it mean for the industry which includes Tesla’s Powerwall?

Terms of the deal were not disclosed in Friday’s announcement. Shell previously invested €60 million in Sonnen in May 2018. After completion of this acquisition, Sonnen will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Shell.

Sonnen’s main product is its sonnenBatterie, a home energy storage battery similar to Tesla’s Powerwall. sonnenBatterie comes in two models, the eco and the more advanced ecoLinx, which includes home automation features.

The company unveiled its sonnenCharger last year. The home EV charger lets owners charge using solar power — from a Sonnen home battery pack, or from the entire network of Sonnen home battery packs when their own power is low.

Source: https://electrek.co/2019/02/15/shell-acquires-home-battery-ev-charger-company-sonnen/


Why the Rivian / GM / Amazon deal could be a win-win-win (13:36 minutes): https://youtu.be/88_BGaffLyk

Can a non-Tesla EV make it without the North American Tesla Supercharging network? (11:42 minutes): https://youtu.be/wRQfZ9i_Q0I

First impressions: Audi e-tron (7:48 minutes): https://youtu.be/N3awqDy8gPQ

Wrap up

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