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- 12/09/14--10:30: Toyota spending $168 million to make more Mirai fuel cell vehicles
The Mercedes-Benz S-500 Plug-In Hybrid has earned an Environmental Certificate from the TÜV Süd technical inspection authority. The award is based on a lifecycle assessment of the vehicle. This includes the ability to reduce CO2 emissions by 43 percent through charging, and by 56 percent if charged using hydroelectricity. Read more in the press release below.
Daimler is expanding its production capacity for lithium-ion batteries. The company is investing around 100 million euros in its subsidiary Deutsche ACCUmotive, who will provide batteries for the electric Smart Fortwo and Forfour, as well as various Mercedes-Benz models. By the end of the construction, Deutsche ACCUmotive will have quadrupled production and logistics space since 2011. Read more in the press release below.
Honda has begun sales of its Grace hybrid sedan in Japan. The Grace is based on the Honda Fit and uses the automaker's Sport Hybrid i-DCD system. It comes in front- and four-wheel-drive versions and uses a seven-speed DCT with built-in motor. The Honda Grace starts at the equivalent of about $16,500. Read more in the press release below.
Honda has begun operation of its wind farm in Brazil. The farm consists of nine wind turbines, expected to produce about 95,000 MWh of electricity per year, which is on par with Honda's consumption for automobile production in the country. Honda is aiming to cut its CO2 production by 30 percent by 2020 compared to 2000 levels. Read more in the press release below.
Toyota has won the 2014 World Endurance Championship's Driver and Manufacturer categories with hybrid technology. Toyota celebrated the win after the final race in Sao Paolo, Brazil. Toyota uses the same hybrid technology in its racing cars as it does in its production vehicles. Read more in the press release below.
Controlled Power Technologies and other groups are calling for an international 48-volt electrical standard for vehicles. The groups called for the standard at the International Conference Automotive 48 V Power Supply Systems, saying that the 48V standard for mild hybrids would help make the systems more affordable. This will make it easier for automakers to meet the more stringent CO2 standards anticipated in coming years along with the introduction of the World Light vehicles Test Procedures. Read more at Green Car Congress.Permalink | Email this | Comments
The last semi-official number we had for pre-orders for the 2016 Toyota Mirai fuel cell vehicle was around 200. But demand is strong enough that Toyota is saying that it will spend 20 billion yen ($168 million US) to expand annual production capacity at the "secretive workshop" where the Mirai will be built from 700 in the first year (2015) to around 2,000 after that.
Japanese newspaper Nikkei reported the increase and also breaks down where Toyota expects to sell the small number of Mirai vehicles it will make in the first few years: 400 in Japan by the end of 2015, 200 or 300 In the US in 2015 (and then 3,000 by the end of 2017) and between 50 and 100 in Europe annually starting around 2016. To make all of these hydrogen cars, Toyota will add two lines to the factory where the fuel cell stacks and tanks are built and it will also upgrade the assembly location.
In the US, the Mirai will initially only be sold in California next year and will start at $57,500 or lease for $499 a month for 36 months (with $3,649 due at signing). The Japanese automaker is including hydrogen fuel for "up to three years" at that price, mostly because no one knows how to accurately measure and sell H2 for cars quite yet.Permalink | Email this | Comments