Electric Vehicle Weekly News Roundup Nov 30
This has been a week full of landmark announcements and indicators of more change to come.
Rivian, the EV-startup founded by an MIT graduate, has delivered what many have been waiting for: an all-electric pick-up truck with tremendous towing capacity. The R1T is being manufactured in Normal, Illinois which was once a Mitsubishi factory (more on why that matters below). Deliveries are expected in late 2020 with a starting price of $69K.
The all-electric SUV shares the same platform as the R1T pickup and is capable of seating 5 or 7. It also boasts a mind blowing range of over 400 miles and has the same signature Rivian headlights as the R1T. These two vehicles will be sure to fill a space that the industry has not seen until now.
Kia has been busy updating their Soul EV and more than doubling its current range. The 2020 model will use the 64 kWh battery pack found in the Niro EV and Hyundai Kona and is expected to enter production during the third quarter next year. Although they appear to make them in higher-than-compliance vehicle numbers, this model will only be available in CARB states so you will need to ship them to the Southeast if you would like one.
General Motors announced they will be shuttering four factories and discontinuing several models (mostly sedans) including their plug-in hybrid Volt in order to chart a new way forward that includes electrified transportation. What will happen with the labor force and buildings? The following article from Electrek offers a suggestion.
All-electric startups Tesla and Rivian have both transformed closed legacy manufacturer factories that once produced gas-engine vehicles into electric vehicle plants of the future. Will this be a golden opportunity for Tesla or some other progressive entrepreneurs? Hopefully, the GM workforce can become part of the clean energy revolution.
SK Innovation, a Korean battery maker, plans to build a 2,000-worker hybrid-electric vehicle battery plant in Jackson County, GA. SK Innovation’s primary clients are Mercedes-Benz and Hyundai-Kia Motors, both of which have assembly plants in Alabama.
The charging company, ChargePoint, nearly doubled its purchasing power as investments from Chevron’s Technology Ventures, GIC Private Limited, utility American Electric Power, and Daimler Trucks & Buses have been racked up. This will help the company reach their target to install a total of 2.5 million public chargers by 2025.
Will these twin bills pass or will a new deal be negotiated with the House after Democrats take control of that chamber in January?
Merkley, Whitehouse Introduce Bold New Legislation to Transition the U.S. To 100% Zero-Emission Vehicles. Senators Jeff Merkley (Oregon) and Sheldon Whitehouse (Rhode Island) have just Introduced new Federal legislation to transition the U.S. to 100% Zero-Emission Vehicles! According to the press release, "the Zero-Emission Vehicles Act would, for the first time, set a comprehensive federal ZEV standard, requiring that of all new car sales in America, at least 50% be zero-emission vehicles by 2030 and ultimately, 100% by 2040. A bold national ZEV standard would put the U.S. at the forefront of the emerging electric vehicles market, positioning the U.S. to lead in innovation and manufacturing."
California continues to lead the way on EV adoption. In addition to reaching the half-million milestone, more than 10 percent of new sales in the state are electric vehicles. Way to go California as the national EV leader!
The Largo Car Show was a huge success and offered an opportunity to introduce gear-heads to electric vehicles and for EV owners to show off their rides. Here are a few fun pics from the event.