Xiaomi to Open Car Plant in Beijing With – Latest news headlines


Chinese smartphone giant Xiaomi will build a plant that can produce 300,000 vehicles annually in Beijing for its electric vehicle unit, authorities in the capital said on Saturday.

The plant will be constructed in two phases and Xiaomi will also built its auto unit’s headquarters, sales, and research offices in the Beijing Economic and Technological Development Zone, the government-backed economic development agency Beijing E-Town said on its official WeChat account.

Beijing E-Town said it anticipated the plant reaching mass production in 2024, a goal announced by Xiaomi’s Chief Executive Lei Jun in October.

In March, Xiaomi said it would commit to investing $10 billion (roughly Rs. 75,000 crores) in a new electric car division over 10 years. The company completed the business registration of its EV unit in late August.

The company has been opening thousands of stores to spur domestic sales growth for its smartphone business but eventually intends to use these shops as a channel for its plans to sell electric vehicles.

© Thomson Reuters 2021


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Latest News Today – Elon Musk Congratulates Tesla on Producing, Delivering


Tesla CEO Elon Musk congratulated his electric vehicle-making company on building and delivering more than 200,000 cars in the April-June quarter “despite many challenges.” During the same period last year, Tesla produced about 82,000 vehicles and delivered 90,650. The release of Tesla’s second-quarter numbers suggested just how fast the once-struggling electric vehicle (EV) segment was making inroads into a market dominated by vehicles that run on fossil fuels. This also showed Tesla was quickly ramping up its production capacity to meet the rising demand as the world shifts towards cleaner energy sources.

Tesla built 206,421 vehicles and delivered 201,250 — a record for the company — despite the COVID-19 pandemic unravelling several economies and subduing the demand.

In a statement, the company praised its employees for doing an “outstanding job” in navigating the supply chain and logistics challenges, including a global shortage of semiconductors.

Tesla currently manufactures the Model S sedan and Model X SUV only at its factory in California, US, and the smaller Model 3 and Model Y at its plant in Shanghai. The bulk sales were of Model 3 and Model Y.

Tesla said their delivery count should be seen as “slightly conservative” and final numbers could vary by up to 0.5 percent or more. Nonetheless, the Q2 numbers showed a dramatic 150 percent year-on-year (YoY) improvement in Tesla’s production.

Many congratulated Musk and Tesla on achieving this feat on Twitter.

One user, @eastmeetswest82,  also thanked him for saving the green Earth.

Tesla is set to make its India entry soon. In a two-word tweet in January, Musk confirmed Tesla’s plan to open centres in the country. Responding to a tweet that said Tesla was preparing for a “robust entry” into India, a multi-billion dollar market, he said, “As promised”.






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Latest News Today – BMW Cooperates With Solarwatt on Home Batteries, to


Solarwatt will start selling storage batteries from this autumn in cooperation with carmaker BMW amid an ongoing convergence of renewable power and electric mobility, the German photovoltaic firm announced on Wednesday.

Under the deal, BMW will supply battery components also used in its electric vehicles for Dresden-based Solarwatt which will develop and assemble photovoltaic (PV) storage products under the brand name Battery flex in Germany to complement rooftop solar installations.

“We are delighted that, through our partnership with Solarwatt, we can make an additional positive contribution to bringing photovoltaics and electromobility closer together,” BMW executive Eric Hamm said.

As the price of battery technology has come down, it is becoming increasingly economical for householders to store surplus solar power to supply power sockets or heat water directly, rather than selling it to grid operators.

Solar power can also be used to supply heat pumps or charge electric cars, helping to reduce global warming by replacing power generated by fossil fuel.

Solarwatt is investing EUR 100 million (roughly Rs. 890 crores) up until 2025, for example on production lines and complementing Battery flex with intelligent software to manage energy flows around the house to help cut costs and raise households’ self-sufficiency.

It will also offer installations, metering, insurance, and tax advice and widen sales channels.

Solarwatt is majority-owned by Stefan Quandt, who owns nearly half of luxury carmaker BMW with his sister Susanne Klatten.

The German battery market is currently led by Solarwatt rival Sonnen, part of Shell.

German solar power supply in the first quarter 2021, at 7.24TWh, held a 5.4 percent share of total power grid volumes, Fraunhofer Institute data showed.

Solarwatt sold 16,000 PV systems last year in Germany alone and reported turnover of  EUR 120 million (roughly Rs. 1,070 crores).

© Thomson Reuters 2021


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Latest News Today – Joe Biden Urged by Cruise to Back Autonomous Vehicle


Cruise, the autonomous vehicle (AV) company majority-owned by General Motors, has urged President Joe Biden to back efforts to speed thousands of self-driving cars to US roads, saying the country risks lagging behind China, according to a previously unreported letter seen by Reuters.

The chief executive of Cruise, Dan Ammann, in a letter to Biden dated May 17, asked him to back legislation raising the cap on the number of vehicles that a company can seek to have exempted from safety standards that do not meet existing federal requirements that assume human drivers are in control.

The cap, Ammann wrote, “acts as a U.S.-only impediment to building these vehicles at scale in the United States.” Cruise provided a copy of the letter to Reuters.

“China’s top down, centrally directed approach imposes no similar restraints on their home grown AV industry,” Ammann wrote. “We do not seek, require or desire government funding; we seek your help in leveling the playing field,” he said, citing research that AVs are “estimated to create and sustain 108,000 jobs over the next five years.”

The White House declined to comment on Monday.

Senators John Thune and Gary Peters have been working for several years on efforts to ease restrictions on AVs. An amendment to a bill designed to address US competitiveness against China proposed by Thune to raise the cap stalled last week amid opposition from labor unions and plaintiffs attorneys, but Thune and Peters are expected to continue to pursue the issue.

Thune and Peters in April circulated language for potential legislation to grant the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration the power to lift the cap and initially exempt 15,000 self-driving vehicles per manufacturer, rising to 80,000 within three years. The NHTSA would need to certify self-driving vehicles exempted are at least as safe as human-driven ones.

Ammann, in his letter to Biden, said that “without your support and congressional action to revise these self imposed barriers, the US AV manufacturing industry will lag, AI development will stall, and our foreign competitors will race ahead.”

The auto industry, Alphabet’s Waymo, and others have been pushing for years to convince Congress to speed self-driving vehicle deployment.

Reuters reported May 11 that Waymo and California-based Cruise have applied for permits needed to start charging for rides and delivery using autonomous vehicles in San Francisco, citing state documents.

In October, Cruise said it planned to seek NHTSA approval to deploy a limited number of Cruise Origin vehicles without steering wheels or pedals. The Origin, which was developed with GM and Cruise investor Honda Motor, has two long seats facing each other that can comfortably fit four passengers. Production is expected to begin in early 2023.

© Thomson Reuters 2021
 


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Latest News Today – Ola Hypercharger Network Planned to Be Built in India,


Ola Electric Mobility plans to build a nationwide charging network for the electric scooters set to start rolling out from its massive Bengaluru factory this summer.

The Ola Hypercharger Network will be the world’s largest, densest two-wheeler charging system, comprising 100,000 high-speed charging points in more than 400 Indian cities, Ola said Thursday in a statement. In the first year, the startup will set up 5,000 of the points in 100 cities, doubling such infrastructure in the country. Its scooters will also be bundled with a home-charging kit.

World’s largest e-scooter factory to make EV every 2 seconds

Sufficient charging infrastructure is crucial to accelerate electric-vehicle adoption in India, which has lagged far behind China and Europe. If Ola Electric wants to sell the 10 million vehicles it plans to produce a year in the Bengaluru e-scooter factory — the world’s biggest — the startup will need to alleviate consumer anxiety about pricing, driving range, and availability of charging points.

The startup backed by SoftBank and Tiger Global Management said its system will take 18 minutes to replenish an electric-scooter battery to 50 percent charge, which will allow for a drive of 75 kilometres (47 miles). The chargers will be located in city centres, business districts, office towers, and other crowded areas. Customers will be able to pay and track charging progress via an app, said the company, which will build the system with partners.

“We are re-imagining the entire user experience of owning an electric vehicle,” Bhavish Aggarwal, Ola’s co-founder and chief executive officer, said in the statement. “By creating the world’s largest and densest two-wheeler charging network, we will dramatically accelerate customer adoption of electric vehicles.”

Ola said its scooters will be priced “aggressively” to make them affordable to buyers in India. The company also has plans to export to foreign markets.

© 2021 Bloomberg LP


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Tesla to Start Operations in India Early Next Year, | Sidnaz Blog

Tesla will come to India early next year, country’s transport minister Nitin Gadkari told national daily the Indian Express on Monday.

The electric-car maker will start with sales and then might look at assembly and manufacturing based on the response, the minister told the newspaper.

Tesla and the minister’s office could not be immediately reached by Reuters for comment.

Though keen to reduce its oil dependence and cut down on pollution, India’s efforts to promote electric vehicles have been so far stymied by a lack of investment in manufacturing and infrastructure such as charging stations.

The first model to be launched will be Model 3, the cheapest among Tesla vehicles, with prices starting at over $74,739 (roughly Rs. 55 lakhs), according to a report. The bookings will start in January, the report said.

In October, the government of Maharashtra had invited Tesla to the state, weeks after Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk suggested entering the country next year. In a tweet, State Tourism and Environment Minister Aaditya Thackeray said he and industries minister Subhash Desai held a video call with Tesla executives earlier in the day to invite them to the state.

Earlier this month, Musk said “Next year for sure” on Twitter in reply to a post with a photograph of a T-shirt with the message: “India wants Tesla”.

Tesla’s entry into Asia’s third largest economy could come at a time when Prime Minister Narendra Modi is increasingly focusing to promote the use of electric vehicles.

Last month, Tesla’s market value dropped $50 billion (roughly Rs. 3,68,300 crores) despite CEO Elon Musk’s promise to cut electric vehicle costs so radically that a $25,000 (roughly Rs. 18.4 lakhs) car that drives itself will be possible, but not for at least three years.

© Thomson Reuters 2020


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Amazon, Blackberry Team Up to | Sidnaz Blog

BlackBerry and Amazon on Tuesday announced an alliance to create a cloud computing platform that cars could link to for services and insights based on data from vehicles and users..

Word of plans for an Intelligent Vehicle Data Platform called IVY synching cars wirelessly to computing power at Amazon Web Services caused shares in Canada-based company to rev more than 50 percent to nearly nine dollars.

BlackBerry and AWS share a common vision to provide automakers and developers with better insights so that they can deliver new services to consumers,” BlackBerry chief executive John Chen said in a joint release.

IVY is intended to be a cloud-connected software platform that could be used by any car maker to analyze sensor data in real-time and give drivers useful information.

Modern cars and trucks are built with thousands of parts from an array of suppliers, typically with proprietary hardware and software involved, the companies noted.

The vision is for the platform to quickly make sense of all that data for drivers, while also serving as a platform for additional apps or services from developers.

Car makers have “almost zero software skills,” and IVY promises to be a secure, cost-effective platform for them to tap into cloud computing power, Global Equities Research analyst Trip Chowdhry said in a note to investors.

The jointly operated software will run on car or truck systems, but will be managed remotely from the cloud, according to Amazon.

Examples of potential capabilities included IVY spotting dangerous road conditions such as ice or heavy traffic and prompt drivers to take safety measures.

Drivers of electric vehicles could share battery information with charging networks to reserve charging slots along routes, and parents could get sensor data regarding their teen-agers’ driving, the companies said,

“AWS and  BlackBerry  are making it possible for any automaker to continuously reinvent the customer experience and transform vehicles from fixed pieces of technology into systems that can grow and adapt with a user’s needs and preferences,” said  AWS chief executive Andy Jassy.

BlackBerry has shifted gears to concentrate on software and services since being dethroned in the mobile phone market more than a decade ago by touchscreen phones powered by Apple or Android software.

The BlackBerry keyboard is to live on in a new 5G smartphone planned for release next year from Texas-based OnwardMobility.


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