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NEWSLETTER: June 2015
Welcome to the EDI newsletter, where we’re committed to delivering valuable information and insight on the hybrid, plug-in hybrid, and electric vehicle drivetrain industry. We'll also share some of our company news and technology breakthroughs. If this newsletter was forwarded to you and you would like to receive it monthly please feel free to subscribe. Thanks from the team at EDI.
In this Issue:
In celebration of clean air month, this edition features points of view from EDI executives on the role the industry plays on emissions reduction. We follow our green utility trucks to the Annual Red Cross Gala and Governor Brown’s Zero Emissions Vehicle Summit, and journey to China for a recap on the recent Shanghai Auto Show.
CEO CORNER, Point of View:
The Increasingly Negative Tailpipe
Adoption of zero-emissions vehicles is still in its early stages, but the numbers are increasing with California having just reached the 120,000 ZEV mark in its goal to reach 1.5 million by 2025. Fleet owners have also begun making the change to clean vehicles as regulations become increasingly restrictive in regards to where, when, and how much a vehicle can exhaust-not to mention the new carbon credit business models. When you take all of those into account, it may not be long before the very notion of tailpipes (and their emissions) are considered unacceptable.
It begs the question: Is it possible that once there are enough zero emissions vehicles in a neighborhood, will the owner of a conventional vehicle be considered an environmental hazard? (Taking into consideration the fact that when operating a gasoline-powered car, fuel is burned for transportation for the owner, but everyone else, including those with zero emissions vehicles, is left to deal with the negative effects of vehicle exhaust.)
If we compare emissions reduction to the decline of tobacco use in the U.S., the hypothetical question above doesn’t sound so unreasonable. In recent years, smoking has become less socially acceptable due to a combination of public education and government involvement in instituting restrictions regarding where smoking can occur. This downward trend then prompted people to consider the effects of secondhand smoke which sensitized the population about the issues that it causes. Similarly, I’ve noticed that as zero-emissions vehicles become more popular, the owners of ZEVs increasingly show concern with the operators of traditional vehicles and their negative impact on the environment. At the same time, governments worldwide have begun to enact laws to limit things such as diesel use, how long a vehicle can idle, and where a vehicle can idle. This phenomenon is creating a higher level of awareness and sensitivity about the effects of vehicle exhaust.
Another example of this trend comes from a recent experience I had at an airport in the U.K. I was sitting next to the window on a delayed flight and as the tow vehicle that was parked next to the plane was started up, an impressively thick black cloud of smoke billowed from its exhaust stack. The passenger next to me made an unrepeatable comment about the smoke and several others agreed without hesitation.
On another note, the report that was issued by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) last week regarding the level of global subsidies that are going to offset the cost of energy was staggering. The estimates are that over $5.3 trillion will be spent in 2015 to offset the cost of energy - That’s significantly more than the amount that is spent on global public healthcare. It’s also almost enough to cover the cost of EV batteries for every vehicle purchased in 2015 in the U.S., China, and Europe combined.
It does take time for things to change, and with all of the new EVs and PHEVs that are in production or that have been announced, the change is definitely already underway. We're all very fortunate to be in a position to contribute to creating a cleaner and more sustainable future. So with public opinion starting to shift and government support increasing every year, it makes it seem likely that it's a "when" and not an "if," the tailpipe will become as unacceptable as second hand smoke.
Joerg Ferchau, CEO
Efficient Drivetrains Inc.
Learn more about EDI’s product portfolio
EDI featured in Charged Magazine
EDI was featured in an 8-page spread published in the March/April issue of electric vehicle publication Charged Magazine. In the Q&A-style article, CEO, Joerg Ferchau discussed EDI’s extensive portfolio of extended-range EV drivetrains, including the company’s Ford F-550 PHEV platform delivering 35+ miles of all-electric range, highway speeds of 65+ mph in full electric vehicle mode, and continuous AC power export at 120 kW, among other features. EDI’s GM 3500 PHEV platform was also featured, which delivers 30 - 40 miles of all-electric range, series-parallel extended range of 300 miles, and bi-directional charging, among other features. Ferchau also discussed why EDI’s technology is the ideal type of plug-in hybrid, real-world applications of our patented clean tech portfolio, and the versatility of our drivetrain systems.
Click here to read the entire article.
Track the Trucks: Utility Solutions on the Move!
EDI featured at Governor Brown’s ZEV Summit
EDI’s PHEV work truck solution created in collaboration with PG&E was recently showcased as part of Governor Brown’s Zero Emissions Vehicle Summit held in Sacramento. Governor Brown’s office extended an exclusive invitation to EDI to participate in the summit, which took place at the California Environmental Protection Agency Headquarters.
Attendees of the session were provided with the latest statistics on California’s progress towards the governor’s aggressive emissions reductions goals and objective to achieve 1.5 million ZEVs by 2025. EDI was prominently featured at the event as one of the companies helping California achieve Governor Brown’s ambitious goal. As part of the event, EDI displayed one of their industry-first work truck solutions that offer more power than conventional work vehicles, providing 100 percent OEM performance, while reducing emissions by up to 80 percent.
You can learn more about EDI’s participation at Governor Brown’s Zero Emissions Vehicle Summit in the official press release.
For more information on the technology running PG&E’s green fleet, check out EDI’s utility work truck solution page
For more information on EDI’s port truck, see the official press release.
EDI's Work Truck at the 2015 American Red Cross Gala
The CEO of PG&E, Tony Earley, was honored at the 2015 American Red Cross Gala for his exceptional leadership and commitment to charitable activities. Annually, PG&E significantly supports the American Red Cross with financial and employee volunteer contributions. On prominent display outside of the gala was one of EDI's clean tech PHEV utility trucks, built in collaboration with PG&E.
PG&E, in collaboration with Efficient Drivetrains, Inc., is the leader in greening fleets and reducing emissions in their industry.
EDI’s utility truck, capable of exporting 120 kW of synchronized AC power, is ordinarily used by PG&E to eliminate planned power outages, providing electricity to up to 100 homes at a time. “EDI’s on-board power export technology provides grid-reliable power anywhere the truck can go. We’re just scratching the surface of what it can be used for,” commented Joerg Ferchau, CEO of EDI.
Find out more about the 2015 American Red Cross Gala at redcross.org.
To find out more about Efficient Drivetrain’s energy solutions, please check out the EDI Solutions page.
In addition to the FAME program, there are a number of pilot projects that have been planned for India. Pure electric vehicles may start to be used to make home deliveries for companies such as Dominos and KFC and for industrial distribution of groceries. Public transportation fleets could soon start to include electric taxis and hybrid buses. There is a fair amount of skepticism regarding the effectiveness of this change as the efficiency of pure electric vehicles depends on a large number of public charging facilities – of which India has very limited numbers – but Union Minister Geete will address this issue as the plan moves forward. The concern at hand is to begin building out the much-needed incentives to galvanize the change towards clean energy in India.
Check out EDI’s official video featuring our new PHEV SUV solution
Following the completion of a world’s first affordable plug-in hybrid electric SUV, EDI’s engineering team set out to Thunderhill Raceway Park in Willows, Calif. to test its newest vehicle solution. Built as an affordable option for the Asian marketplace and based on EDI’s proprietary drivetrain technology, the SUV offers the highest performance for a PHEV in its class.
Take an exclusive look at EDI’s day out on the test track with the new SUV PHEV solution on the official Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. Facebook page.
Find out more about EDI’s New Energy PHEV SUV in the official press release.
EDI is now on Facebook!
We’re happy to announce that EDI’s Corporate Facebook profile is now live! You can check it out here (and please like it!).
We invite you to visit our page to view “the lighter side” of EDI and take the opportunity get to know the people behind the company. We’ll be posting behind-the-scenes photos and videos, industry links from around the web, and relevant and useful content related to EDI. As always, we’d love to hear from you, so please don’t hesitate to contact us with any ideas for future posts or topics you’d like to view more of. We’re hoping to use Facebook as another way to connect with all of you, so please visit our page and give us a like!
Plug-in electric vehicles a quiet but dominant presence at Shanghai auto show
Contributed by: guest Author, Alysha Webb
Electric vehicles weren’t the main public relations statement at this year’s Auto China, but they were omnipresent. Pretty much every automaker’s stand, whether foreign or domestic, had at least a few electric vehicles.
Auto China, the country’s largest international auto show, is an annual event that alternates between Shanghai and Beijing. This year it was held at a huge new venue in Shanghai’s Hongqiao district. Many automakers chose the show to debut new electric vehicles, and it seems they are betting that plug-in hybrid electric vehicles will be the most popular type of passenger EV in China.
Cadillac, which is looking to grow its toehold in China’s luxury segment, debuted the Cadillac CT6 PHEV at the Shanghai show. BMW debuted the 2016 X5 XDrive 40e plug-in hybrid at the show, and Volvo, which is now owned by China’s Geely, debuted a gasoline plug-in hybrid electric vehicle version of its S60L sedan.
The Volvo S60L Twin Engine PHEV debuted at Auto China.
The sedan – the “L” means it has extra room in the back seat for China’s chauffeur-driven owners – is produced at Volvo’s plant in Chengdu, China and is also available with a gasoline-only powertrain. A version of it will be exported to the U.S. starting later this year, but the U.S. will only receive the gasoline-powered version, said Volvo spokesman Stefan Elström.
There were also plenty of new PHEVs with a Chinese nameplate. For example, Chery showed its Arrizo7 PHEV, debuting a system developed in-house known as iPOWER. The technology covers PHEVs, BEVs, hybrid, and start-stop systems, “integrating traditional and new energy technologies” according to Chery.
Chinese automaker Chery also debuted its own versions of PHEVs at Auto China.
Considering all the PHEVs on display, you might think Chinese consumers were PHEV-crazy. Sales to consumers of plug-in electric vehicles in China are growing, to be sure. In the first three months of 2015, sales of passenger PHEVs more than doubled to more than 7,700 units. Sales of all PHEVs, including commercial, rose to 11,176 units.
But they are still a tiny part of the total market in China, where some 5.3 million passenger vehicles were sold during the first three months of the year.
Besides being pressure by the government to produce and sell more electric vehicles, automakers in China, just as in the U.S., are adding electric vehicles to their portfolios to meet increasingly strict fuel efficiency standards, China’s equivalent of Corporate Average Fuel Economy or CAFE.
By 2020, automakers in China must achieve 5 liters per 100km, or about 47 mpg. As in the U.S., the Central government and some provincial governments offer incentives for the purchase of electric vehicles.
Incentives for pure electric vehicles are greater than for PHEVs. Still, automakers seem to believe PHEVs will be more popular given China’s under-developed charging infrastructure.
Connecting with EVs
Connected cars – with the ability to use the internet for services ranging from navigation to sensing a driver’s mood – were a more in-your-face theme at the Shanghai show. But many of the connected cars were also electric.
Qoros, a joint venture between China’s Chery and an Israeli investor, unveiled the Qoros 2 SUV PHEV concept at the Shanghai show. This car, the fourth model produced by Qoros, is its first EV. The car is equipped with Qoros Cloud, a connected car system that includes maintenance, navigation, social media, and even tips to improve a driver’s driving skills.
Sometimes, the creation of the connected car technology precedes the creation of a vehicle. BAIC, or Beijing Auto, devoted a large section of its stand to displaying its connected car dashboard developed with internet firm Leshi. No actual car has yet been produced, but Leshi Internet of Vehicles CEO He Yi has said it will develop an EV with BAIC.
At the CBU conference in Shanghai at the same time as the Auto Show, He Yi said of the future Le Car EV, “It will be the most luxurious mobile device in the world.”
To find out more about Efficient Drivetrain’s energy solutions, please check out the EDI Solutions page.