EVs In 60ish Seconds: Tesla Compact Car, Plus Highlights From IAA

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IAA Munich

The most EV news this week comes from Munich at the IAA Mobility conference. Some highlights below:

BMW Believes Less is More:

BMW showed off the i Vision Circular Concept vehicle which reduces the materials used vs. a traditional vehicle. For example, the BMW logo is lasered into the front hood, reducing the need for a badge made from different colored cuts of metal or plastic. The vehicle will feature ionized bodywork rather than multiple layers of paint. BMW will replace their steel kidney grilles with LED lights instead. 

Porsche and Electric Supercars:

Porsche CEO believes it would be a mistake if the European Union caves to the Italian government’s push to exempt supercars from an internal combustion ban that’s been proposed for 2035. According to the CEO, “it would be the wrong move on performance grounds, since electric in the next decade will be unbeatable.” 

Renault Megane:

Renault has announced the electric Megane to replace the older Zoe EV model in an effort to compete amongst Europe’s highly competitive EV market. The Megane will have a range of 470 kilometers and can be fast-charged for 300 kilometers of range in about 30 minutes.

Chip Shortage:

VW and Daimler’s CEOs are nervous about how long semiconductors will be scarce and disrupt their production. The car industry expects the shortage to continue into 2023 until it is resolved.

1073 Horsepower Mission R Concept

In other news from IAA, Porsche has revealed the Mission R electric race car. The vehicle is lower and wider than the 718 Cayman and features two electric motors with a 429-hp unit on the front axle and a 644-hp motor powering the rear.

In race mode, the Mission R delivers 671 horsepower but in Qualifying mode, the horsepower is turned up to 1073. Porsche says the two electric motors can supply the vehicle with 30 to 45 minutes of on-track action.

The Mission R is able to accelerate from zero to 62 mph in less than 2.5 seconds and can reach a top speed of more than 186 mph. The vehicle can match the lap times of a current 911 GT3 Cup. The vehicle has an 80 kWh battery pack and has a 900-volt system, so it can recharge from 5% to 80% in 15 minutes. Most of the vehicle’s body and interior are built from natural-fiber reinforced plastic along with 3D printed foam elements. The interior is geared toward maximizing on-track performance.

Right now, the Mission R is a prototype, but the company said a fully developed version could come in 2025 or 2026. 

Tesla Model 2

Tesla has announced it aims to release a $25,000 electric car in 2023. According to CEO Elon Musk, the car will also be fully autonomous and may not even have a steering wheel. This new price point is achieved through Tesla’s new battery cell and battery manufacturing effort, which could reduce battery costs by over 50%. 

Currently, Tesla is trying to release its Full Self-Driving Beta Software to its fleet in the US by the end of September. Once the software is out, Tesla plans to  improve it using data to make it several times safer than human drivers to achieve regulatory approval to use it as a true self-driving system

Mercedes Onslaught

Mercedes-Benz introduced many electric vehicles ahead of the IAA Mobility show in Munich, Germany. One of the models unveiled is the first AMG-branded high-performance EV, a sedan, and a G-Class SUV concept. Mercedes hopes to morph the brand into an electric-only automaker by the end of the decade with its dedicated 40 billion euros ($47 billion) for the electric-only plan.

Mercedes aims to launch three electric-only platforms in 2025 that will form the foundation for all of its novel vehicles. The MB.EA platform will be used for its medium to large passenger cars, while AMG. EA supports the lineup of Mercedes-AMG cars and the VAN.EA will be used for electric passenger minivans and light commercial vehicles. Some of the future models from Mercedes include:

The EQB compact SUV which will come in two versions. The EQB 300 4MATIC with 168 kW or 255hp and the EQB 350 4MATIC with 215 kW or 288hp. The range will be about 260 miles.

The EQE350 sedan is the more affordable version of the EQS and will have a single electric motor that will produce 288 horsepower and 391 lb-ft of torque. The battery ranges around 660 kilometers, or 410 miles, and can add an additional 250 kilometers, or 155 miles, with 15 minutes of fast charging.

The EQS 57 4MATIC+ is the first battery-electric AMG production model based on the EQ architecture. The vehicle has two AMG electric motors providing a total system output of 484 kW or 658hp. The EQS also has “race start” which will bump the power to 761 hp and 742 lb-ft of torque, which jets the car from 0-60mph in 3.4 seconds. The battery has 108 kWh of storage capacity, providing 580 kilometers, or 360 miles, of range.

The EQG is the electric Geländewagen or G-Wagen. Not much is known about the electric luxury SUV except it will have four electric motors and plenty of power. 

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