Volkswagen employees receive a big check from their friends at Porsche, Tesla is investing in nickel mining in the United States, and the powerful car has landed in South Korea. All that and more in the Tuesday issue of morning shift On January 11, 2022.
First gear: changing hands
The Volkswagen Group — which includes the likes of Porsche, Audi and Bentley — is developing cars built on top of a common ground-breaking electric vehicle platform called Artemis. This is the Landjet project that Audi made fun of Grand Sphere concept last year. These will be huge and ultra-luxurious electric baffles, built with the latest and greatest in the group’s autonomous driving technology.
So it was a bit of a surprise – and not a particularly great look for the group as a whole – that Porsche just lost $113 million Avoid using Artemis. From Car News:
Porsche executives believe that the brand, whose customer base is primarily focused on performance-focused buyers, does not need Artemis’ advanced autonomous driving functions. The brand lobbied VW Group for its version to be built at the Porsche factory.
Porsche will now pay about 100 million euros ($113 million) to Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles to purchase itself from the project, sources told sister publication Automobilwoche Europe.
Instead, Porsche will build its flagship electric vehicle, known internally as the K1, at its plant in Leipzig, Germany, starting in 2026, one year later than planned in Hanover.
All Artemis vehicles were to be built at Volkswagen’s Hanover plant, which usually produces light commercial trucks. You can imagine that Porsche might make its big cruiser at one of its facilities, which apparently will. Codenamed K1, this flagship company is now slated to use the Premium Platform Electric foundations already in use in Audi E-Tron GTBecause Porsche doesn’t need that stinky, self-driving jumbo.
Like Porsche, Bentley has also worked to dodge full production in Hanover of its version of the Artemis, per electrif. While the structure will be made there, the final assembly will take place in England.
Porsche’s reluctance is understandable, and this decision likely means better things for the electric pioneer over the Taycan, ensuring it remains more true to the brand’s values. At the same time, I have to wonder if this was one of those instances where all the luxury brands of Volkswagen were aggressively armed in this, and if everything would have gone a little more – and cheaply – if Porsche had backtracked before the plan was closed. .
Second gear: Tesla gets American nickel
Last summer, Tesla CEO Elon Musk a promise A “Giant Long Term Contract” for anyone willing and able to “mining nickel efficiently and in an environmentally sensitive manner.” Musk apparently found that company in Talon Metals, the BVI-based base metals supplier that leads the carbon-neutral Tamarack mine in central Minnesota. The parties announced the agreement on Monday, and the Tamarack project represents Tesla’s first domestic supply of nickel. From Reuters:
By sourcing from Minnesota’s Talon Project, a joint venture with Rio Tinto slated to open by 2026, Musk is securing a major US source of the metal for Tesla’s battery plants in Texas and Nevada, while also reducing the company’s supply lines. The automaker last year signed nickel supply agreements with BHP in Australia and from New Caledonia.
Indonesia is the world’s largest producer of nickel, but miners there typically use energy-intensive technology to extract the metal and spread controversial waste disposal practices, including dumping rock waste into waterways.
Talon Metals plans to use technology that it hopes will allow it to absorb carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and chemically link it – and thus permanently store it – to the rocks inside the Tamarack Project in northern Minnesota. This process, which is still being tested, would actually allow Talon to market nickel as carbon-neutral, which is a huge attraction for Musk and Tesla.
The deal will last six years, or until 75,000 metric tons of nickel are produced, according to Talon press release. Reuters adds that it is not known where the nickel concentrate will be refined, as there is no nickel refinery in the United States
The average price of nickel has risen significantly in recent years, rising by 27 percent in the first half of last year compared to the 2020 average, world Trade. United State No way leader In nickel production, with one mine in Michigan exporting all of their crop for refining elsewhere.
The development of electric cars is spurring the construction of new battery plants around the world, especially here at home. Similarly, global production of nickel will need to increase in kind to meet the ever-increasing demand. Talon plans to start production at Tamarack by January 2026.
Third gear: Volkswagen thinks it can double EV sales in China
Though, I’m not sure how to do this. That’s because the brand’s CEO for the region has been vocal about the ongoing shortage of semiconductors limiting growth. From Reuters:
The German automaker sold 70,625 of its knowledge electric vehicles in China last year, missing its target of selling 80,000 to 100,000 vehicles, with production also affected by the regional COVID-19 outbreak as well as issues with the chip.
Volkswagen China’s president, Stefan Wallenstein, said at a press briefing in Beijing that the automaker would still want to double its original plan but that goal “is not currently secured by the semiconductor supply we’re currently seeing”.
He added, however, that it was “very positive that we would see a doubling of actual sales”.
The problem is not directly related to silicon. Volkswagen knows it’s not the most exciting thing about China right now. From financial times:
Volkswagen’s five new identity models haven’t sold as well as hoped, and company executives told the Financial Times that Chinese buyers are gravitating toward newer electric brands, not associated with traditional automakers.
As a result, Volkswagen is creating showrooms focused on the ID brand, and is expanding its online sales offering with the hope of selling at least 140,000 ID models this year.
Volkswagen’s first list of electric cars appears to be good enough to make an impact, so it’s a bit surprising to hear that Chinese buyers aren’t flocking to it. However, it is admittedly more surprising to know that Volkswagen is huge five ID models for sale in Chinawhile we have One.
Fourth gear: One of South Korea’s oldest automakers was picked up by someone you’ve never heard of
SsangYong is a manufacturer of SUVs and pickups that has never been sold in the United States but has a presence in many other parts of the world. The company’s roots go back to Dong-A Motors in the 1950s, a company that predated Hyundai. It was announced on Monday evening that Edison Motors, a South Korean maker of compressed natural gas and electric buses, had acquired SsangYong which was founded the same year as Next Too Close stormed the Billboard – 1998 charts. From Reuters via Car News:
SsangYong Motor Co. said Monday that a consortium led by South Korean electric car maker Edison Motors has agreed to buy debt-laden SsangYong Motor Co. for 305 billion won ($254.65 million).
A regulatory filing from the automaker showed SsangYong saddled with high debt and its car sales last year fell to 84,496, down about 21 percent from the previous year.
SsangYong was so cheap it was bleeding money and its previous owner, Mahindra, hadn’t been able to find a buyer for about a year. Edison is presumably interested in bringing SsangYong to North America by the middle of the decade. Good luck.
If you want to know more about the new owner of SsangYong, I invite you to read Edison’s about page, which leads with a quote about how the company will “outperform Tesla Motors” attributed to itself, then alternates between naming Apple and Google every other paragraph between blurry illustrations of the cars that might just be clip art.
Fifth gear: Mercedes thinks they can build a car on their own
Unlike Mercedes-Benz models powered by mashed up dinosaur bones, the brand’s electric vehicles use powertrains and engines from ZF and Valeo Siemens. It includes New EQS. But the triple star house isn’t expected to always be this way. In fact, it may change in a couple of years. From Car News:
“We want to control the overall system of the electric motor, battery and power electronics as much as possible, similar to what happens with a combustion engine,” Schaefer said. This also includes the inverter, which transmits power from the battery to the motor. “It has not been decided whether we will also build this ourselves,” he added.
The article adds that the efficiency of the mind EQXX The prototype, which was revealed during CES last week, offers a preview of the benefits of future Mercedes packaging:
With the same battery capacity, it requires half the mounting space, is about a third lighter than before and has high efficiency, the auto manufacturer said.
The EQXX will consume only 10 kWh per 100 km, while current electric vehicles consume around 15 kWh or more. This should enable significantly longer ranges, especially for next-generation compact cars; The EQXX can travel more than 1,000 kilometers (600 miles) on a single charge.
EQXX is also just a concept at the moment, so I’ll believe it when I see it.
Rear: Fiat Thinker
On this day in 1955—66 years ago—bike maker Bianchi, Pirelli and Fiat banded together, united by a common goal of making Fiats, but weird about it. Autobianchi and by extension, The cooler Italian version of Mini Boy.
Neutral: Did you know about the 10th generation Lancer?
One of the coolest things about enjoying cars is that, in my opinion, it’s impossible to know everything. This is also the reason why I love music so much. Every time you think you’ve seen it all, you’re reminded that you didn’t. I learned that great lesson again this week when I learned about The tenth generation of Mitsubishi LancerSold exclusively in China and Taiwan.
OK, Technically It was not built by Mitsubishi and Technically It’s more than Deep face lift. It doesn’t really matter. Regardless, the fact of the matter is that there is a car with a Lancer badge in another part of the world that I didn’t know existed until a couple of days ago. Makes you wonder what’s in there!