Converting the nation’s fleet of automobiles and trucks to electric power is a critical piece of the battle against climate change. The Biden administration wants to see them account for half of all sales by 2030, and New York state has enacted a ban on the sale of internal combustion cars and trucks starting in 2035.
But making America’s cars go electric is no longer primarily a story about building the cars. Against this ambitious backdrop, America’s electric grid will be sorely challenged by the need to deliver clean power to those cars. Today, though, it barely functions in times of ordinary stress, and fails altogether too often for comfort, as widespread blackouts in California, Texas, Louisiana and elsewhere have shown.
When Aptera debuted plans for their electric vehicle in 2007 the solar panels were only powerful enough for climate control, but now, 14 years later, Aptera’s 3-wheeled rig relies on just the sun for most of its charging needs.
To achieve this “never charge” status, they created a hyper-efficient vehicle and added 700 watts of solar power, capable of covering most commuting needs just on the solar, bringing the car’s range to 1,000 miles of autonomy on a full charge.
“It starts with a math equation,” explains Aptera co-founder Chris Anthony, “which means first aerodynamics, because what you don’t realize is that with a typical sedan you use 60% of your fuel just pushing air out of the way…”
“Then, if you couple it with an electric power train which gets much more power to the wheels versus an internal combustion engine, and then if you make it lightweight you decrease rolling resistance and other things and you end up with a math equation that is very, very efficient. And when you’re very efficient you can do things like put solar panels on your vehicle to charge your vehicle with a reasonable amount of range.”
The UK-based technology and manufacturing firm is incorporated in Canada, has a Montreal office and tells Electric Autonomy in an exclusive interview that it is close to securing premises in Quebec for its second gigafactory to serve the North American EV industry and plans to expand into cathodes and R&D
Canadian start-up StromVolt Americas has announced that it will be building Canada’s first lithium-ion cell factory for electric vehicles. StromVolt will work with the Taiwan’s Delta Electronics and the factory will be located in Quebec.
StromVolt Americas, a Canadian company, is proud to announce that it has signed agreements with Taiwan-based Delta Electronics to build the first lithium-ion cell factory in Canada. StromVolt will be the first North American firm to fully own such a facility along with the rights to develop and scale up this critical technology.
“StromVolt’s agreements with Delta Electronics are a landmark opportunity for North American cell manufacturing. StromVolt would gain, through this close cooperation, the cell technology, extensive in-person support for the factory construction and the sale of brand-new machinery. The partnership drastically reduces the timeline for the factory to become operational and eliminates the uncertainty for such an ambitious project.” says Maxime Vidricaire, CEO of StromVolt.
What is certain is that converting an old car to run on electric produces less carbon dioxide (CO2) than making a new electric car.
The UK’s government-funded Zemo Partnership (previously called the UK’s Low Carbon Vehicle Partnership) says that a new all-electric car typically creates 18 tonnes of CO2 during its lifetime, 46% of which comes while it is being manufactured. This compares with 24 tonnes for a standard petrol vehicle.
Mr Quitter says it takes between three to six months to carry out a conversion, based on whether he has had the experience of converting that particular car and model before, and the complexity of a customer’s wants and specifications.
Norway is ahead of the game in EV sales, with gasoline’s share of the new car market vanishing more and more every month, faster than almost anyone outside of Electrek‘s Slack channel could have predicted. This has led Norway to have the earliest target for the phaseout of new gas vehicle sales in the world – 2025.
But gas cars might not even last that long. According to an analysis printed by the Norwegian Automobile Federation’s magazine, Motor, the downward trend in sales for gas cars has been so consistent and steep that the last new gas car sale in Norway could happen just seven months from now, in April 2022.
As Motor acknowledges in their article, the very last gas car probably won’t be sold in April 2022. Not every car segment has a good selection of vehicles yet, and there are always some exceptions.
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