EV and PHEV competitors are making lots of news these days. Electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) are starting to stir conversations about competition for Tesla, contradicting the prevailing Tesla in-house philosophy that the only cars that challenge Tesla are gas-powered.
Several reasons point to EV and PHEV competitors rising in the marketplace. First-time EV and PHEV owners are robust target audiences, partially because of environmental appeal and mostly because more budget-friendly sticker prices are making EV and PHEV transportation suddenly appealing. Governments around the world are offering enhanced levels of support to expedite the transition from fuel-burning automobiles to clean energy transportation. And more manufacturers are responding to the surging interest by developing EV and PHEV options and instigating competition.
So our featured stories on this “Gas2 Week in Review” turn away from the usual Tesla media feeding frenzy and look, instead, to EV and PHEV competitors. Mahindra & Mahindra’s new offices outside Detroit have led to speculation that its new EV and PHEV line will be provided under either the Pininfarina or Ssangyong Motor Company brand. Samsung’s SM3 ZE and its increased battery capacity without more weight lets us breathe a little more deeply as we actually start to relinquish range anxiety. Honda’s electric range for its 2018 Clarity Plug-in Hybrid is just six miles shy of the Chevy Volt. Geely-owed companies, Volvo and Lync & Co., are chatting up their commitments to the U.S. plug-in hybrid crossover market with assurances that all will be real by 2018 or 2019. Not to be overshadowed, General Motors CEO Mary Barra insists that her company has up to 20 electrified models ready to hit production — or at least on the architects’ drawing boards. Uber’s at it again, this time announcing a deepening relationship with Volvo for autonmous vehicles.
And numbers are good for EVs and PHEVs in the recent 2017 quarters— at least in China, that is.
Here are those EV and PHEV stories on this edition of the “Gas2 Week in Review.”
Will it be Italian design house Pininfarina or the Korean utility vehicle Ssangyong Motor Company that Mahindra & Mahindra will use to brand its EV and PHEV products in the U.S.? After the opening of a new North American headquarters outside of Detroit earlier this week, Mahindra has inched closer to establishing EV and PHEV distribution in the large U.S. marketplace. The possible EV and PHEV collaboration is likely to involve premium models for Pininfarina that would compete with U.S automakers.