Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Tesla will miss Model 3 launch deadline, bearish analyst says

Tesla is unlikely to meet its summer goal to start production of the Model 3, causing one analyst to downgrade the automaker's stock to "sell." The Grinch in this particular Christmas Party is Goldman Sachs' David Tamberrino, which Bloomberg News cited as reducing his recommendation on the stock. Tesla shares fell 4.1 percent on Monday to about $246 and were trading near that level Tuesday morning.
The California-based electric-vehicle maker reiterated in its investors note last week that Model 3 vehicles would start rolling off the production line as soon as July. Tesla said it would be producing 5,000 Model 3 vehicles a week by the end of the year and will double that pace to an annualized rate of more than a half-million Model 3 vehicles by the end of 2018. Tesla shares hit a 52-week high of more than $287 earlier this month and have jumped 29 percent in the past year.

But that summer deadline won't be met, wrote Tamberrino, who put a six-month price target as low as $185, or a 25-percent plunge. Additionally, with money-losing company SolarCity in the fold, Tesla will likely need to raise cash by year end.

Tesla has been notorious with missing deadlines, and the the Model 3 is particularly notable because of its advance interest. Within 24 hours of going on sale last spring, the Model 3 generated about 180,000 pre-orders, with each generating a $1,000 refundable deposit. That number has since grown to about 375,000. Unlike its Model S and Model X brethren, the five-seat Model 3 is more popularly priced, at about $35,000 and offers a single-charge range of 215 miles.

2017 Volkswagen e-Golf Given Official US EPA Range Rating Of 125 Miles

Following the beginning of orders in Germany, the new 2017 Volkswagen e-Golf has been granted its official US EPA range rating — 125 miles per full charge. That figure represents a roughly 50% increase on the range of previous model years.
Notably, the refreshed model was granted a combined fuel economy rating of 119 MPGe (miles per gallon equivalent) by the EPA, which makes the model one of the most “fuel” efficient vehicles on the US market. It’s actually in a tie with the Chevy Bolt EV, only trailing the Hyundai Ioniq Electric. The 2017 Volkswagen e-Golf’s estimated fuel economy for city travel (as determined by the US EPA) is 126 MPGe, and the estimate for highway travel is 109 MPGe.
Pricing information has yet to be revealed for the US market. Sales are expected to begin sometime in late Spring.
As with earlier iterations, if you don’t live in California, you’re likely out of luck if you want the model. The company doesn’t seem particularly interested in selling the model in the broader US market, for whatever reasons.
As we reported previously, the 2017 Volkswagen e-Golf features a 35.8 kilowatt-hour (kWh) battery pack — representing a fairly large increase from the 24.2 kWh battery-packs in use in the model previously.
A 7.2 kW onboard charger is now standard on both SE and SEL Premium trims, it should be noted. Also notable is that DC fast-charging capability is standard on SEL Premium and optional on SE, allowing for a roughly 80% charge in under an hour (presuming a 50 kW fast charging station).
Another notable improvement accompanying the new 2017 iteration is the inclusion of a 100 kW electric motor, rather than the 85 kW electric motors in use in previous model years. The upgrade improves the model’s torque to 214 pound-feet (up from 199 pound-feet) and improves its 0–60 mph acceleration time to 9.6 seconds.

Monday, February 27, 2017

Honda Clarity EV will only go 80 miles on a single charge

  • White Honda Clarity Fuel Cell
  • Honda Clarity Fuel Cell in white
  • Image Credit: Honda

For Honda's upcoming electric vehicle, size matters. So does price, to a lesser extent. As for range? Not quite as much. Honda will start selling a battery-electric version of its Clarity sedan this spring, and will provide it with a single-charge range of about 80 milesAutomotive News reports. The automaker has yet to announce pricing on the Clarity EV.
Such a single-charge range puts the Clarity EV's range at about a third of the Chevrolet Bolt's 238 miles. Additionally, both BMW and Volkswagen have tweaked the batteries on their i3 and e-Golf EV models to boost distance performance to the 115-to-125-mile range. Hyundai is about to enter the fray with a battery-electric variant of its Ioniq sedan that will have a range of 110 miles.

Long known for its gas-powered vehicles' impressive fuel economy, Honda, compared to Japanese competitors such as Toyota and Nissan, has maintained a relatively small presence in the electrified-vehicle sector. The company, which will also sell a plug-in hybrid version of the Clarity, tells Automotive News that it wants to keep the all-electric reasonably priced. Additionally, the company said the primary complaint about its Fit EV was that model's size, spurring Honda to ensure that the Clarity EV's dimensions were a little more family-friendly. Honda sold 407 Fit EVs in 2014 (sales during the subsequent years were at a trickle), down 28 percent from the 526 it sold in 2013.

Honda last year divulged details of what it calls its Clarity series, which was hatched with the company's limited-production fuel-cell vehicles. Last month, Honda sold 42 Clarity fuel-cell vehicles after moving just eight units all of last year, and two units each in 2015 and 2014.

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