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Smart launches ForTwo and ForFour ElectricDrive in Germany

Daimler AG, through its Smart division, has disclosed that its two electric models, the Smart ForTwo and the Smart ForFour are now open for orders in Germany. Official market launch is scheduled in June.

The ForTwo is priced starting at €21,940 with the ForFour having a price of €22,600. However, since the electric drive models of the brand have been certified to be qualified to be part of the Germany’s environmental incentive scheme, this means that the price can be lowered by at least €4,000. This means that the ForTwo can be purchased at €17,558.84 with the ForFour now available at €18,220.

For those who want something from a higher range, the ForTwo Cabrio Electric Drive is a good option. With a starting price of €25,200, the green bonus means that this is now priced at around €21,000. If that’s still not enough, there is also the ForTwo Electric Drive Greenflash which comes in at €27,839. Still with the eco bonus, this goes down to €23,459. With the added amount, customers get design accents on the exterior with the interior showcasing some features in electric green.

Read the entire article Smart launches ForTwo and ForFour ElectricDrive in Germany

A new Smart ForTwo EV could sustain the momentum for 3 years, says Tracey Matura

General manager of Smart USA believes that a new generation of electric car could provide the microcar brand the momentum it needs until an all-new vehicle is rolled out in 2015. Tracey Matura remarked that the third-generation of ForTwo Electric Drive car could account for around 30% of Smart's sales in the U.S. in a full year.

Newest generation of the Smart ForTwo will be rolled out in the spring with a starting price of $25,750, including shipping -- making it the least expensive electric vehicle on the market. Smart has improved the smart ForTwo’s top speed and 0-to-60 mph acceleration time, with the range significantly boosted from 63 miles to around 91 miles, Matura said.

The electric vehicle will be available as a hardtop or as a convertible for an additional $3,000. Dimensions of the third-generation ForTwo remain the same as the gasoline-powered one, which measures just 106 inches in length.

Read the entire article A new Smart ForTwo EV could sustain the momentum for 3 years, says Tracey Matura

Smart preparing to launch the first mass-produced electric model

Daimler is preparing to launch the first mass-produced electric auto ever from a German manufacturer and hopes that with this move, it will be able to regain its reputation as the urban mobility pioneer. When the Smart car was presented in 1998 by Daimler AG, it had a vision to offer a smog-reducing electric version to strengthen the image of the brand as a leader in the urban transport segment.

However, Smart was left behind by other city cars in terms of innovation. BMW AG's Mini was able to release different variants that range from a roadster to a four-door crossover, considered as a stepping stone to its parent BMW brand.

On the other hand, Smart has just a single model and it hasn’t done much in helping out Daimler's Mercedes-Benz, which wasn’t able to catch up to Audi in sales for the first time in 2011.

Read the entire article Smart preparing to launch the first mass-produced electric model

Daimler starts sales and production of Smart ForTwo electric car

Daimler beat fellow German carmaker BMW in introducing an emission-free vehicle model first by commencing sales and production of its smart ForTwo electric car. Daimler started building the Smart ForTwo at its Hambach plant in France, which is currently undergoing more than EUR200 million in upgrades. The company will start delivering the ForTwo vehicles later this year.

According to Annette Winkler, smart’s global head, the upgrade of the Hambach site includes the accommodation of the production of the electric-powered smart and the next generation of the city car.

The smart ForTwo boasts of being able to travel 145 kilometers before it runs out of battery power. Customers could opt to lease or purchase smart ForTwo’s battery. If a customer chooses to lease the battery, he would have to shell out EUR65 a month, on top of the acquisition price of the smart ForTwo at EUR18,910. However, if a customer decides to purchase the battery, he would have to pay a total of EUR23,680.

Read the entire article Daimler starts sales and production of Smart ForTwo electric car

Electric car maker smart aims to duplicate this year its sales feat in 2011, despite the declining demand for new cars in Europe, and the shortage of new products. Annette Winkler, Smart's global head, told Automotive News Europe that the company is “working unbelievably hard” to sell more than 100,000 units in 2012.

She said that in order to achieve the target, smart will take advantage of markets where new-car sales are rising, like China and the United States.

In China, the electric car maker sold 11,045 units in 2011 and about 3,000 cars in the first two months of 2012.In the US, the company posted a 50% rise in sales for the first two months of 2012 to 1,265 cars, according to the Automotive News Data Center. As for its global sales for the first two months of 2012, the company posted a 17% rise in sales to 16,031 units.

Read the entire article Smart aims to sell over 100,000 electric cars in 2012

Do you want to drive a car that could speed up without emitting harmful pollutants? Then, why not try the smart BRABUS electric car, which promises to provide maximum driving fun without hurting the environment. The smart BRABUS electric is bases on the smart fortwo and is powered by a 60kW electric motor that is based on the state-of-the-art drive technology of the smart fortwo electric car.

Smart BRABUS electric car delivers up to 135 Nm of torque, which says much on how fast the car could accelerate. Aside from the acceleration, the smart BRABUS also lets the driver experience the sporty feel, thanks to the car’s sports suspension which brings the electric vehicle closer to the ground by around 10 millimetres.

The sporty feel is further enhanced by a special BRABUS sound generated by an audio module. The smart BRABUS electric car also features a BRABUS sports steering wheel, with the steering wheel gearshift as a standard feature.

Read the entire article Smart Brabus Electric makes its debut

The electric version of the ForTwo minicar will start to be delivered by Daimler's Smart subsidiary in September 2012, according to Automotive News Europe. Two months ago, Smart had pledged that deliveries will begin months earlier than next September. The brand considers the electric ForTwo to be its most important launch in 2012.

A Daimler spokeswoman confirmed the revision in the schedule, explaining that the delay is only for three months and that deliveries would have started in June. She said that the plan had to be changed due to the setback with Li-Tec, its battery cell supplier.

When Li-Tec ramped up production, it encountered problems. However, she wouldn’t specify what the issues are related to the manufacturing process. The spokeswoman clarified that the batteries have no technical or quality defects but the company doesn’t want to lower its standards when it comes to quality.

Read the entire article Daimler delays the Smart ForTwo electric car

The first all-electric carsharing network in North America has been officially launched by car2go N.A., LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Daimler North America Corporation, and the City of San Diego. What this means is that for the entire San Diego area, emissions-free driving would become an affordable option and will be broadly available.

San Diego drivers will be pleased that the car2go smart fortwo electric drive carsharing network offers them with unparalleled flexibility and convenience when it comes to mobility in the city.

This will mark the first time in North America that an entire city will get on-demand access to a huge network of electric drive cars. Car2go is recognized for its achievements in flexible and tailor-made individual mobility.

Read the entire article car2go all-electric carsharing network launched in North America

Daimler AG will offer a trial version of its Smart electric car to Hong Kong partners as the city fights record pollution. In a statement, Daimler said that its trial partners, including the Hong Kong Jockey Club and Swire Coca-Cola HK, will employ the two-seater car for 6-12 months. Mercedes Benz will set up a service center with technicians and mechanics.

The pilot program, which runs for four years, enters a push by companies like Mitsubishi Motors Corp. and Nissan Motor Co. to present electric vehicles in Hong Kong.

Government data show that in Hong Kong, pollution reached "very high" levels on a record one in four days last year. Last February, lawmakers said that the city government intends to replace several fuel-powered vehicles with electric ones and is looking into the possibility of hybrid buses.

Read the entire article Daimler to offer a trial version of Smart electric car in Hong Kong

Mercedes-Benz’s Smart phase three Fortwo ED will have its world debut at the Frankfurt motor show next month. The automaker has unveiled a significantly revised version of the Smart Fortwo ED, which offers better performance and a wider range.

The compact rear-wheel drive plug-in electric car gets a totally new driveline that is comprised of a high-powered brushless electric motor from Bosch and lithium ion battery that has a higher capacity.

Compared to the phase two Fortwo ED, its peak power is higher by 33bhp to the current 73bhp (from just 40bhp). Its nominal power is higher by 20bhp from 27bhp to 47bhp.

Read the entire article Third-generation of the Smart ForTwo ED coming to the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show

This November, Daimler's second-generation Smart fortwo electric vehicle will hit the streets of Berlin, followed by Hamburg, Paris, Rome, Milan, Pisa and Madrid. The new EV, which was built in Hambach, France, boasts to have an innovative and highly efficient lithium-ion battery."

Sourced from Tesla Motors, the new battery is placed between the axles to save space in the two-seater. The battery powers a 30 kW magneto-electric motor fitted at the rear, which provides 120 Nm of torque and allows the car to go from 0-60mph in 6.5 seconds.

Daimler wants to emphasize that even if the speed has been limited to 100 km/h, the EV's performance is the same as the petrol powered version. For a travel of 30-40 km/day, a recharge time of three hours is sufficient.

Read the entire article Second-generation Smart Fortwo electric drive coming in November

As part of a campaign to improve the image of Minicar maker Smart among its urban clientele, a 250-unit test fleet of electric cars will be launched in several US cities this year.

The cars will be leased in the following cities: Portland, Oregon; San Jose, California; Orlando, Florida; Indianapolis, Indiana; Washington D.C. and Massachusetts east-coast corridor of Interstate 95.

Smart USA, which distributes cars made by Daimler AG, began production on the second-generation electric ForTwo minicar at its Hambach, France plant last November. The 95% recyclable car features a 16.5 kilowatt-hour lithium ion battery made by Tesla Motors Inc.

Read the entire article Smart launching a 250-unit test fleet of electric cars in United States

Making eco-cars does not necessarily mean making sacrifices as the Smart ForTwo clearly demonstrates. The car's superior-quality equipment shows that a car that makes much eco sense can also have beauty and provide driving pleasure at the same time, or else the Smart ForTwo would not have enjoyed the popularity that it does now.

Now, Smart-BRABUS takes the Smart ForTwo to a whole new level. During the Geneva Motor Show a near-series Smart-BRABUS show car that came with electric drive and high-tech lithium-ion battery celebrates it world introduction. The Smart ForTwo has successfully combined ecology with a totally pleasurable ride.

The light and roomy design of the Smart ForTwo BRABUS electric drive paired with the finest of natural materials show accord with the environment and simultaneously raise the pleasure of getting one's hands on and driving such a high-end custom-made car a step further. Matt green paint finish provides the car a very stylish and fashionable look.

Read the entire article 2009 Geneva: Brabus Smart ForTwo Electric Drive

BMW’s European customers who are looking forward to have a new range extender version of the 2019 BMW i3 (BMW i3 REx) will have to bear a bad news from the German premium carmaker. They won't be able to get a new one as BMW will stop producing and offering the i3 REx in Europe starting 2019 model year.

It should be noted that BMW still listed the i3 REx in the 2019 model year specification, although its Web site aren’t offering any information about the ranger extender version anymore. This has led to confusion, with many still assuming that that REx version of the i3 would still be available for the upcoming model year. To an extent, there is some truth to this, since while the 2019 BMW i3 REx will be discontinued in Europe, it will still be offered in the United States.

At first glance, it may seem odd that BMW would discontinue the range extender version of the i3, after all the REx had accounted for 60 percent of the model’s sales, despite being around £,3150 more expensive than a standard i3, which is pure electric. However, the true appeal of the i3 REx isn't really the combination of electric motors and a range-extending two-cylinder 650-cc petrol engine to provide additional charge to the drive battery. The true charm of the i3 REx lies on fact that it allows its driver to travel more distance even when the battery pack has reached a certain low charge.

Read the entire article BMW i3 REx to be discontinued for 2019 model year in Europe

The distance a vehicle can travel with a full tank of gas or a single full charge is important to any driver. This is why most carmakers reveal the range of their vehicle offerings. With the first example of the I-Pace already delivered to its retail customer, Jaguar has released its MPGe estimates for its electric SUV. Sad to say, but the Jaguar I-Pace doesn’t measure to its EV competitors in terms of electric range.

When Jaguar said that the new I-Pace electric SUV would be getting a large battery as its core, expectations were high for its electric range – until it release its estimated MPGe figures. MPGe stands for miles per gallon equivalent (MPGe), as how the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) converts the power consumed by an EV into a term that is familiar to most Americans. MGPe is essentially how far an electric car can travel on the amount of energy that is equivalent to one gallon of gasoline.

According to Jaguar, the new I-Pace returns 80 MPGe city, 72 MPGe highway and 76 MPGe combined. This means that the Jaguar I-Pace can travel up to 234 miles in all-electric range in a single charge from its 90-kWh battery. That may sound impressive, but wait until its electric range is compared against other EVs, in particular the Tesla Model X that is considered as its main rival as both are electric SUVs.

Read the entire article Jaguar says I-Pace electric SUV has an electric range of 234 miles

The new Porsche Taycan is considered as revolutionary at the German sports car maker as the upcoming model is its first all-electric vehicle. Nonetheless, the new Taycan four-door EV will also be the starting point of a new revolution in the company. As Porsche is committing itself to electric mobility, it also has to undergo a significant change, especially in terms of production.

Porsche is currently building its conventionally powered vehicles, including its 911 sports car, using the traditional principle of an assembly line. But when it commences the production of the Taycan, Porsche will be implementing major changes for the production and assembly facilities of the new EV.

Lutz Meschke, Deputy Chairman of the Executive Board and Member of the Board responsible for Finance and IT at Porsche, remarked that starting 2025, more than 50 percent of the Porsche models delivered are expected to be electrified. While this will require substantial investments in development, production, and staff training, Porsche believes that the carmaker will still be able to achieve a target profit margin of at least 15 percent.

Read the entire article Porsche to implement flexi-line production system for new Taycan EV

It has been a year since Nissan commenced sales of the second-generation Nissan Leaf. Already at that time, consumers were already more receptive to electrified vehicles, especially in Europe. The timing could never be so good for Nissan to launch the 2018 Leaf as the Japanese carmaker posted excellent sales of the electric vehicle in Europe just a year after its release.

According to Nissan, the new generation of the Leaf EV is experiencing astounding success especially in Europe. The around 26,000 units of the 2018 Leaf has been handed to customers in Europe since its launch, making it the best-selling electric vehicle in the region this year. In addition, the new Nissan Leaf managed to become the best-selling EV in Europe every month in the first eight months of 2018. Put into other perspective, Nissan is selling a new Leaf EV in the region every 10 minutes.

On the other hand, the new second generation of the Leaf is the best-selling passenger car in Norway so far in 2018. This is quite a feat since the 2018 Leaf managed to beat not just other electric vehicles in this European country, but also conventionally powered models as well.

Read the entire article Second-generation Nissan Leaf goes strong in Europe with a unit sold every 10 minutes

It has already been 20 years since smart entered into the world of automotive. But smart has no intentions of stopping right now, so it is unveiling a new concept car that doesn’t just celebrate its 20th anniversary, but also provides a glimpse of its vision into the future while still linking with the past. smart will unveiling the new forease two-passenger concept car at the 2018 Paris Motor Show.

Derived from a current vehicle – the smart EQ fortwo cabrio – the new smart forease is the carmaker’s statement of urbanity and individual style, representing the coolness of the metropolis while demonstrating a truly free spirit. While boasting of a seemingly futuristic look, the forease boasts of openness and minimalistic style, as inspired by smart’s pioneering concept vehicles like the crossblade (2001) and the forspeed (2011).

Essentially, the smart forease concept car takes practicality into a simple level, living up to smart’s original motto of “reduce to the max.” While overly minimalistic with details just reduced to the essential, the new forease gives a new meaning to the brand’s definition of emotionality, lifestyle and attitude.

Read the entire article 2018 Paris Motor Show: Smart celebrates 20 years by unveiling forease concept

Not a few motorists were enthralled when Volkswagen unveiled the ID Buzz Concept at the 2017 Detroit Motor Show. VW is putting the ID Buzz into production and make it available as early as 2022. Now, the German group, through Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, is now testing the waters for the possibility of offering a zero-emission transporter based on the ID Buzz.

The new ID Buzz Cargo is simply a progressive sibling for the ID Buzz. But instead of carrying people, the all-electric ID Buzz Cargo carries out the job as a commercial vehicle. VW unveiled and is currently displaying the ID Buzz Cargo concept at the 2018 IAA Commercial Vehicles in Hannover, Germany (September 20 to 27, 2018). Created as a supplementary model to the VW Transporter T6, the ID Buzz Cargo being presented in Hannover is already close to production, which may happen as early as 2021.

Just like the ID Buzz, the ID Buzz Cargo will be available in different battery sizes, according to the purpose and budget of the customer. Underpinned by the Modular Electric Drive Kit (MEB), the ID Buzz Cargo can be installed with batteries that allow all-electric ranges of between 330 km and over 500 km (as per WLTP). Battery capacities are pegged at between 48 kWh and 111 kWh.

Read the entire article Volkswagen ID Buzz Cargo Concept is your next-decade zero-emission transporter

Porsche has already officially announced that it is dropping its diesel-powered vehicles across its lineup while the German sports car maker re-focuses its energy towards electrification. But unofficially, it seems that Porsche is also planning to drop its petrol offerings in favor of an all-electric lineup, save for its 911 sports car.

Citing a person privy with Porsche, manager magazin reported that with the exception of the 911, all other models at Porsche – Boxster, Cayenne, Macan and Panamera – will become pure electric offerings. This means that non-911 models would be dropping not just their diesel engines, but also their petrol engines as well. That basically means no more internal combustion engines at Porsche, except for the 911. The 911 would be spared from being converted into a pure electric unit simply because it is a sports car for the purists.

Porsche conversion of its non-911 models into all-electric vehicles would mean that there would be no hybrid powerplant for these offerings. Hybrids usually combine an internal combustion engine with electric motors, making them electrified vehicles, but not all-electric.

Read the entire article Report says Porsche is planning to convert all non-911 models into EVs