Welcome to the EV Weekly Round-Up! It’s been an exciting start to 2022 with a variety of EV news ranging from new models to hardware that are off and running! This week was the launch of some very exciting items such as JuiceBar’s new level 2 charger for the home that will make things faster and more efficient for the EV lifestyle! Some other fun news includes companies like Volvo really making a concerted effort to reduce their carbon emissions and companies like Lexus are venturing into new terrains to become electric.
As the week’s news illustrates, more and more companies, individuals, places around the country, and globe, are striving to increase EV adoption. Increased competition between manufacturers drives prices down making EVs more affordable for all. This, along with improved infrastructure and further EV-friendly legislation ensures we all benefit from EV adoption.
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Reports and Legislation
- GM has agreed to recognize the state of California’s authority to set vehicle emissions standards under the Clean Air Act, ending their boycott of the new regulation after years of legal back and forth.
- According to a recent report by CALSTART, there are more than 1,700 E-Buses in the United States as of September 2021. The report goes on to suggest how increased roll-out, legislation and grants for E-Buses will improve cost overall in the future. “Continued funding support and advancement in policy will allow the ESB market to grow by giving time for ESB technology to mature and demand for ESBs to increase, consequently reducing the capital cost over time and allowing ESBs to reach cost parity1 with their diesel counterpart.”
- Wallbox’s latest Quasar 2 bidirectional home charger allows an EV to provide backup power for the North American market. With this product, EV owners who live in areas that offer various rates at scheduled hours (often called time-of-use) can now schedule charging sessions at times when rates are low and discharge their car battery to power their home when rates are high through the station’s smart technology features. Users with solar panels can also store excess energy in their EVs during low usage periods and discharge it at other times. (All vehicle-to-home applications require an EV capable of bidirectional charging.)
- The Commercial EV charging company JuiceBar has debuted a new Level 2 home charger, the Cheetah, that can charge at three different rates of 32, 40, and 48 amp hours. This will be compatible with all models and include various smart features and an extended warranty life. The company, according to Amy Harris, JuiceBar’s Chief Marketing Officer, said in their press release, “the company will soon be announcing plans to offer customers an option to make their EVs 100% carbon neutral through the purchase of certified renewable energy credits that offset the cars’ carbon footprint.”
- Tesla has applied for grants to build a Supercharger network that is compatible with other companies’ EVs after a pilot program demonstration in the Netherlands. Tesla has applied to grants in Texas and will start there with ten locations. They hope to expand in other states afterwards.
New EVs on the Horizon
- The Chrysler brand revealed the Chrysler Airflow Concept at CES 2022, revealing its leading-edge drive-system technology with advanced mobility features enhanced by customer experiences that is integrated into the system, while showing off the sleek design and future for the Chrysler brand, committing to an all-electric Chrysler vehicle lineup by 2028.
- At the Tokyo Auto Salon, Lexus is going to debut a new NX PHEV Off-road concept vehicle. According to a Lexus news briefing regarding its debut at the show, “embody Lexus’ efforts to realize a carbon neutral society, expand customer choices, challenge to suggest diversifying and expanding lifestyles, and provide new values that exceed expectations. The aim is to balance the refined lifestyle and driving pleasure that cars provide our customers, while living in harmony with nature”.
New Electric Motor Machinery
- Bobcat reveals world’s first all-electric track loader at CES. The new electric Bobcat T7X is the first machine of its kind to fully eliminate all the hydraulic systems that control the movement of the arms and bucket.
- Volvo has two big announcements! First its fleet of VNR electric vehicle models (commercial trucking) will get an upgrade in Q2 of 2022 with an 85% increase in range, faster charging, and more features for heavy-duty transport across different environments. Second, its FH Electric exceeded its range expectation in testing, while contributing 50% less carbon emissions than it’s diesel counterpart.
- Commercial EV builder Lightning eMotors has introduced an all-new rolling chassis purpose-built for commercial EV applications. The company expects to make pre-production units available starting in the second quarter of 2022, and to begin production before the end of the year.
- Walmart, FedEx place large orders for electric delivery vans from GM’s BrightDrop. Walmart has reserved 5,000 of BrightDrop’s EV600 and smaller EV410 electric delivery vans to support their last-mile delivery network by 2023. FedEx has reserved priority production for 2,000 electric delivery vans over the next few years, adding to its initial reservation of 500 BrightDrop EVs last year. FedEx is also working on a plan to add up to 20,000 more in the years to follow. This is the start of an exciting trend because the US Truck Manufacturing company Kenworth released a report of commercial and heavy truck EV orders tripling in the past three months highlighting more companies’ push for to adopt EVs.
- The NPO Adopt-A-Charger has partnered with Rivian to build more charging stations in Yosemite National Park and Golden Gate’s recreational area, a part of the 10,000 chargers Rivian is promising across the U.S. and Canada by 2023.
- Magna’s new all-electric connected powertrain, the EtelligentReach, consists of two electric motors, inverters and gearboxes, and uses software to maximize vehicle range and driving dynamics. It will be deployed on “a new entrant vehicle in 2022.”
- LG Energy Solutions, based in South Korea, is partnering with Honda Motor Co in the United States to build a combined venture of EV batteries which would have an annual production to power more than 500,000 EVs annually.
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