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electric vehicles

LTC, the UK manufacturer of the iconic black cab and global specialists in purpose built taxis, is investing £300 million (€380 million) to revolutionise its product range and expand into Europe.

Cutting edge electric vehicle technology developed in Europe will be introduced in LTC’s all new electric taxi due for launch into European markets in 2018. Taxi industry participants were invited to view the electric taxi prototype at an exclusive event held today in Barcelona.

Speaking at the event Peter Johansen, President of LTC, said: “Through our product development we aim to help eliminate city centre emissions while giving taxi drivers and commercial operators the opportunity to reduce their running costs. As we look to expand into European markets, the Barcelona taxi trade will be an important growth area for LTC.”

In response to new emissions regulations being introduced across major cities in Europe, LTC is working with established partners to develop a battery electric platform with impressive range to ensure taxi drivers can operate with zero emissions during their daily duty cycle. For peace of mind there is a small back up petrol generator to recharge the battery if vehicle charge points aren’t immediately available, which also allows for motorway speeds over long distances.

While the new taxi retains some design features from the original black cab there are no carry over parts from the existing diesel model and it will be built almost entirely from European sourced components. The modern concept has been designed with both passenger and driver functionality in mind, building on LTC’s reputation as the world leader in purpose built taxi products for urban environments.

Commenting on the functionality of the taxi, Peter Johansen said: “We’re different because all of our vehicles are purpose built around the needs of the taxi operator and passenger, rather than van conversions. Our new taxi will have enhanced accessibility features such as a forward facing wheelchair. It will have 6 passenger seats, a spacious cabin containing charge points, and we’re aiming for the highest safety rating possible to give peace of mind to drivers, passengers and pedestrians.”

A number of cities including Barcelona have been cited by the World Health Organisation (WHO) as having dangerously high levels of NOx and/or PM. The solution to this is to use zero-emissions capable vehicles in cities, such as the next generation taxi.

Later this year LTC will open its new state of the art research, development and production facility near Coventry, United Kingdom. This site will be the home of LTC’s new taxi and a range of other product variants for the commercial sector.

LTC plans to expand to a number of European and global markets by 2020, including Barcelona in 2018. In doing so, it will appoint a comprehensive network of knowledgeable dealers and service specialists near each major city.

Full product details will be released ahead of its launch into London at the end of 2017 and in European markets during 2018.

 

Source: The London Taxi Company

Germany makes electric cars, but not the batteries that power them. To change this, the government and industry have stepped up their research and development activities in recent years. These efforts are now bearing fruit: A joint endeavor with the Centre for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Württemberg (ZSW) has succeeded in manufacturing automotive-grade lithium-ion cells industrially in a pilot plant.

The facility has made standard cells in PHEV 1 format fully automatically, at a high production rate. Funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the State of Baden-Württemberg, the 3,000+ square meter pilot production plant at ZSW is equipped with specially developed manufacturing systems and has been in operation for over a year. The pilot line operation commenced in early 2015.

The experience gained at the ZSW pilot plant has helped significantly bring down the technological barriers impeding the commercial production of battery cells in this country.

Some companies are already aware of this and pitched in to gear up the technology for this endeavor; specifically, BASF, BMW, Daimler, Elring Klinger, Manz, Robert Bosch, Rockwood Lithium, SGL Carbon and Siemens. The pre-competitive research platform in the ZSW Laboratory for Battery Technology (eLaB) at Ulm is open to all companies and research institutions seeking to research battery cell production with advanced materials and manufacturing processes.

More than 1,300 kg of active materials and 11 km of electrode sheets20140805_050_ZSW-60-l-Mischanlage

Since operations kicked off a year ago, ZSW has processed 1,300 kg of active materials into slurries, coated 11 km of electrode sheets, and assembled more than a thousand cells automatically using these components. The plant’s capacity to manufacture at the target rate of one cell per minute and steadily reduce scrap rates was demonstrated successfully.

It will take more development effort to meet all the requirements for future cells, for example, for capacity and durability targets. Nevertheless, these results attest to the impressive success that the German industry and the research community have jointly achieved in recent years. To date, only very few German experts understood the entire manufacturing process for lithium-ion cells from the production of electrodes and cell assembly to formation and testing.

The researchers opted for the most widely used combination of materials, lithium nickel manganese cobalt oxide (NMC)/graphite, to qualify manufacturing processes. Advanced materials that enable higher energy densities to extend vehicles’ range will be employed in newly launched projects. The researchers also aim to optimize cell design and the individual manufacturing processes.

Global e-car boom, an opportunity for German industryZSW-Elektrodenband

Electric vehicles are making inroads around the world. More than 500,000 were manufactured worldwide in 2015. New factories are being built mainly in Asia to meet the automotive industry’s fast-growing demand for batteries.

Lithium-ion cells are the heart of electric cars. They determine the range, safety and cost of an e-vehicle and contribute up to 40 percent of value-add. Local battery cell manufacturing presents an opportunity to maintain the automotive industry’s vertical integration and value-add, which is so extensive and so important to Germany.

 

In its latest analysis, the Centre for Solar Energy and Hydrogen Research Baden-Württemberg (ZSW) found that electric mobility is making significant inroads. The researchers’ fact-finding efforts revealed that the number of electric cars around the globe nearly doubled to currently around 1.3 million. While China saw the steepest rise with more than 200,000 new vehicles last year, the USA has the world’s biggest fleet overall with more than 400,000 electric vehicles on the road. With 55.250 electric cars, Germany continues to lag far behind countries such as Japan, the Netherlands, Norway and France.

Last year the number of electrically powered cars increased worldwide by almost 750,000 to around 1.3 million. The ZSW came to this total in its latest assessment of developments in electric mobility. The researchers recorded around 550,000 new registrations in 2015, up 68% from last year when 330,000 new electric vehicles were sold. Many of these new electric cars – just over 207,000 – are motoring on China’s roads. And with that, the fleet of electric vehicles in China has tripled in number to 307,000. More electric cars – a total of 410,000 – are registered in the United States than in any other country.

Norway defended its international lead in terms of electric vehicles’ percentage share of all cars nationwide: Around 3% of some 2.64 million cars in this Scandinavian country run on electricity. By comparison, the share in Germany is just 0.12 percent. What’s more, Norway nearly doubled the size of its fleet to about 79,000 cars. Every fifth new registration last year was an electric vehicle.Sin-título-2

While customers in other countries such as China, Japan and France have long bought predominantly domestic models, this trend is also on the upswing in Germany thanks to a growing number of German models: Just over half of the 23,460 electric vehicles sold in Germany in 2015 were built by German manufacturers. This was also the first year that a German-made model appeared on the list of best-selling e-cars worldwide with 36,550 BMW i3s on the road. The Nissan Leaf heads up this list with 193,260 sold since 2010.

The Tesla Model S took the top spot among new registrations in 2015 with 42,730 vehicles sold. The US carmaker’s model edged out a pair of Japanese models, the Mitsubishi Outlander (41,080) and the Nissan Leaf (40,270) in the rankings. It was also the first time a Chinese manufacturer earned a spot among the market leaders with 31,900 BYD Qin sold.

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Endesa has launched a new electric vehicle car sharing service in six of the company’s main offices, to enable all the employees to carry out their work-related functions in urban environments in a sustainable and pollution-free manner.

The temporary use of vehicles or vehicle lending, also known as car sharing, is a system for using or renting vehicles whereby users use or rent a vehicle for short periods of time.

The electric vehicle car sharing service is made up initially of 18 BMW i3 vehicles, which have an approximate autonomy of 13 km and the aim is to include another 10 units from now to the end of the year. Endesa employees have an online tool for reserving the vehicle for hours or even full days.

The cars will be located in six of the company’s main offices: Ribera del Loira (Madrid); – Borbolla (Seville); Vilanova (Barcelona); San Juan (Palma de Mallorca); Woermann (Las Palmas); and Mayorazgo (Tenerife). The service will also soon be available in Zaragoza.  The company is installing conventional associated charging points in all the locations, with the aim of all the cars being charged overnight and prepared for use the next day. Furthermore, the Madrid and Barcelona offices have fast charging points that enable 80% of the battery to be charged in approximately 20 minutes.

The use of shared electric vehicles will enable more employees to learn about this technology, if they have not tried an electric vehicle yet, so it also serves as a dissemination tool.

Car sharing

Car sharing programmes began in Switzerland in 1987. Since then a number of other countries in Europe and North America have introduced this new mobility concept, which now has over 900,000 users worldwide.  Today it is estimated that the car sharing concept is present in over 600 cities in 18 countries across 4 continents, with a fleet of over 30,000 vehicles. Car sharing is attractive to customers who make only occasional use of a vehicle, as well as others who would like occasional access to a vehicle of a different type than they use day-to-day. Electric vehicles are the latest incorporation in the car sharing concept, since it is a technology that perfectly meets the requirements and sensitivities of those that use this modality.

Sustainable mobility, secure and electrified

Sustainable mobility, secure and electrified is a key piece to combat climate change. Endesa has firmly committed by it, through its plan to Safe and Sustainable Mobility 2014-2016, that reached in 2015 a 80% of compliance and includes 21 measures aimed at its employees, fleets, suppliers and customers, promoting the reduction of transports needs (teleworking), bolstering modes changes of transport other than the private vehicle (transport, carsharing card), and if private vehicles are necessary, the empowerment of the electric vehicle, both on the part of employees, as fleets, suppliers and customers and the introduction of efficiency measures and security in mobility.

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