Many years ago, Germany still had important expertise in battery technology. After crucial stakeholders left the country, the market has been dominated by Japanese and South Korean manufacturers. The National Platform for Electric Mobility (NPE) is now feverishly looking for ways to bring cell and battery production back to the country, in order to make Germany a leading supplier in electric transportation.
MunichExpo, Germany, has taken a small step back by retracting the name change made in summer 2016 for this year’s event, postponing the issue to 2017. A spokesperson for the Bavarian organizer explained to H2-international that the move was necessary for “legal reasons.” This means that 2016 will still see an eCarTec trade show and an eCarTec Award.
It has been four years since the start of the four German Electromobility Showcase projects. In 2012, they became the follow-up to the eight Electromobility Model Regions, across which electric engine technologies had been researched and developed. Before this demonstration and market preparation stage will ultimately be concluded at the end of 2016, the projects were discussed during an official closing conference
A recent study has exposed deeper issues with the new German cash incentive. The low range of the cars and the poor infrastructure for refills aren’t the only reasons why electric vehicle sales haven’t been taking off: Prospective buyers don’t even find a model they like. Additionally, people view the financial incentives as “supporting the upper class” or “subsidizing carmakers,”
During my research for the article on the second generation of Honda‘s fuel cell vehicle, the Clarity Fuel Cell (see Honda Hands Over Keys for First Clarity Fuel Cell), I suddenly remembered days long past. More specifically, I recalled news pieces that I had written or read many years ago. I did a bit of a search and found the following lines, which I would like to share with you:
“One must recognize the distinct accomplishment of the second-biggest Japanese carmaker, Honda, which – like archrival Toyota – succeeded before all automotive manufacturers in the Western world to supply customers with fuel cell cars.
Life’s hard on Honda: The Japanese carmaker has always been overshadowed by its biggest rival Toyota. Whereas Toyota is expanding its lead thanks to VW‘s diesel emissions scandal, Honda’s efforts to shine in the spotlight, at least by promoting forward-looking technologies, have been met with only a lukewarm press reception. The latest example of that was the corporation’s unveiling of its second generation of Clarity fuel cell cars in the fall of 2015. The presentation attracted much less attention than when Toyota showcased the first generation of its Mirai.
If the number of order bookings is anything to go by, then Plug Power is not only doing very well, but the company will be able to easily achieve or even exceed its ambitious goals: New orders worth USD 72 million in the first quarter increased backlog to an impressive USD 278 million. The new booking target figure this year is USD 275 million. The revenue target is USD 150 million – after USD 100 million last year.
One should never be too enthusiastic, but if the Chinese government really takes up the battle against the country’s dramatic pollution levels, fuel cells and hydrogen will become top priorities – domestically and globally. People will take note of the comments that Wan Gang, China’s minister of science and technology, made during this year’s industry conference H2Mobility in Berlin in early April. Gang – an engineer, who had a ten-year stint at Audi – considers the fuel cell‘s versatility and “green hydrogen” to be two key solutions for improving China’s environmental situation
Tesla CEO Elon Musk was as eloquent as ever when he raised the targets for the company’s electric car models: Instead of producing 500,000 electric cars (total figure, all models – i.e., Model S, Model X and Model 3) in 2020, the company should already achieve that number in 2018 and increase it to one million in 2020. One can question whether these targets will become reality, as they require even more large infusions of cash, making additional capital increases inevitable. And this although Tesla has just recently sought more money
While some talk about the bankruptcy of start-up eZelleron from Dresden, Germany, others only say that the headquarters were relocated to the US. How much truth is to these rumors? First, what is certain is that the delivery of fuel cell device kraftwerk will be late, as bankruptcy proceedings for eZelleron GmbH began on April 18, 2016, at the local court in Dresden.