GMC Shows Sierra Denali Ultimate and AT4X – $$$$$

Ken Zino of on GMC Shows Sierra Denali Ultimate and AT4X

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GMC has shown its first Sierra Denali Ultimate and AT4X trims on its 2022 models due in Q1 of next year. There are also modest interior and technology updates. The profitable line is led by the Sierra Denali Ultimate trim, which GMC claims is the most advanced and luxuriously appointed Denali ever, and the most advanced and luxurious pickup in its class. Denali Ultimate is the first-ever Sierra AT4X, said to be the new peak in premium off-road performance with capability and refinement changes. Sierra Denali Ultimate trim offers “exclusive” design and premium materials, along with technologies including trailering-capable Super Cruise1 driver-assistance technology and a standard 420-horsepower, 6.2L V-8 engine.

Just bring money. Base pricing for each trim will be available at reservation. MSRP15, including destination charge, for Denali Ultimate is $80,395, AT4X is $74,995, Denali is $61,295, AT4 is $60,995, SLT is $50,895, Elevation is $45,495, SLE $43,895 and Sierra Pro is $32,495. Full pricing will be announced closer to the start of production. Continue reading

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NTSB – Fatal Texas Tesla Crash Shows Seats Were Occupied

Ken Zino of on Tesla Fatal Crash in Texas

Tesla steering wheel – displacement of outer rim from top right of center hub cover. Photo by Adrienne Lamm

The National Transportation Safety Board has issued an investigative update into the April 17 fatal crash of a Tesla in Spring, Texas.

The Tesla Model S P100D car was westbound on Hammock Dunes Place when it left the road, drove over a curb, and hit a drainage culvert, a raised maintenance hole and a tree. A post-crash fire destroyed the car.

Contrary to some sensationalist media reports, the Tesla was occupied by a driver and one passenger, both of whom died in the crash. Damage to steering wheel pictured was due to an impact as the Tesla reached a speed of 67 mph during the 5 seconds leading up to impact.

(Tesla Model 3 – Europe’s Second Best-Selling Car in June 21. Low Emission Cars at Record Share. Makers Lagging Buyers; US Battery Electric Vehicle Market – Progress or Proliferation? Tesla has a 75% Share. Is the Nissan Leaf a Best Buy?; NHTSA on Tesla Again for Bogus Safety Claims) Continue reading

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Stellantis, Samsung SDI JV for NA Battery Manufacturing

Ken Zino of Auto on Stellantis Intensifies Electrification Strategy

A lot of blue sky ?

Stellantis N.V. (NYSE / MTA / Euronext Paris: STLA) and Samsung SDI* today announced that their companies have entered into a memorandum of understanding to form a joint venture to produce battery cells and modules for North America. Targeted to start in 2025, the plant aims to have an initial annual production capacity of 23 gigawatt hours, with the ability to increase up to 40 gigawatt hours in the future.

The latest Joint Venture for Lithium-Ion Battery Production in North America comes just days after Stellantis announced that it had entered with LG Energy Solution a memorandum of understanding to form a joint venture to produce battery cells and modules for North America. Thus the battery gold rush among major automakers continues with vast unknowns on how EVs will pan out among consumers. (Stellantis, LG Energy JV for North American BatteryProduction;Toyota to Spend $3.4B for US Battery Manufacturing) Continue reading

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Stellantis, LG Energy JV for North American Battery Production

Ken Zino of on General Motors and LG Energy; Stellantis, LG Energy JV

LG Energy has a growing number of JVs about battery technology and manufacturing.

Stellantis (NYSE / MTA / Euronext Paris: STLA) and LG Energy Solution today announced that they have entered into a memorandum of understanding to form a joint venture to produce battery cells and modules for North America. The JV will establish a new battery manufacturing facility supporting Stellantis’ goal of realizing more than 40% of its sales in the U.S. comprised of electrified vehicles by 2030. Production is scheduled to start  by the first quarter of 2024. Annual production capacity of 40 gigawatt hours is predicted.

The batteries produced at the new facility will be supplied to Stellantis assembly plants throughout the US, Canada and Mexico for installation in next-generation electric vehicles ranging from plug-in hybrids to full battery electric vehicles that will be sold under the Stellantis family of brands. Stellantis was created by the merger of Fiat Chrysler, aka FCA, and Peugeot or PSA. Continue reading

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Toyota to Spend $3.4B for US Battery Manufacturing

Toyota announced today in Japan that it will invest $3.4 billion (¥380B) in automotive batteries in the United States through 2030. The capital spending is for developing and localizing automotive battery production, including those for battery electric vehicles. It is part of the global total of $13.5 billion (¥1.5T) for spending on battery development and production announced last month by TMC. Globally, Toyota has sold more than 18.7 million electrified vehicles, including 4.5 million in the US. (Toyota JV Will See SUV EV Branded Subaru Solterra in 2022)

Toyota Motor North America also announced today that it will establish a new company and build an automotive battery plant together with Toyota Tsusho in the US. Production is expected to start in 2025, the project includes an investment of approximately $1.29 billion until 2031, which includes funds that will be used to develop land and build facilities, resulting in the creation of 1,750 new American jobs. Continue reading

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GM Plant Workers Face Threats After Voting Out Corrupt Union

Ken Zino of on GM’s Silao Plant Workers Face Threats After Voting Out Corrupt Union

Democracy in action. Click to Enlarge.

Workers who voted to reject their collective agreement controlled by the Miguel Trujillo López union – affiliated to the business-friendly Confederation of Mexican Workers – has resulted in threats and harassment because they support a new, independent union, according to IndustriALL, a global consortium of union workers. General Motors has not replied to AutoInformed’s requests for comment. (GM Workers in Mexico Reject Corrupt Union to Form New One)

On 17 and 18 August, workers at the General Motors (GM) plant in Silao, Mexico, voted against the current collective bargaining agreement, which since 2008 has been controlled by Tereso Medina, general secretary of the Miguel Trujillo López union, affiliated the Confederation of Mexican Workers (CTM). A total of 6,480 workers cast their ballot. There were 2,623 votes in favor of the agreement, 3,214 against, and 39 spoiled ballots. As a result, the current collective agreement is in the process of being scrapped. Workers will not lose any of their rights, and their benefits and working conditions will remain the same until new representatives are elected. Continue reading

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Porsche Record Deliveries – Up 13% Jan – Sept 2021

Ken Zino of on Porsche Record Deliveries Up 13% Jan - Sept 2021

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Between January and September 2021, Porsche delivered 217,198 vehicles worldwide, setting a new record despite Covid and semi-conductor woes. This represented a 13% increase for the sports car and SUV manufacturer.

Demand rose across all sales regions, with the US again recording particularly strong growth under the policies of the Biden Administration.

Porsche Cayenne remains the most popular model, with 62,451 delivered, followed by the Macan with 61,944 units, a 12 % increase. The fully electric Taycan posted 28,640 cars being delivered to customers. Now in its second full year on the market, it is – gasp – equal to 911 sports car, 27,972 of which were delivered in the first three quarters – an increase 10%. The 718 Boxster and 718 Cayman were purchased by 15,916 customers, a rise of 1% compared to the same period last year. Deliveries of the Panamera also remained at 20,275, an increase of 1% y-o-y. Continue reading

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France – HYVIA JV Unveils First Hydrogen Prototype

Ken Zino of on HYVIA unveils its first hydrogen prototypes

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Hyvia today showed a Renault Master Van H2-TECH prototype that it claims enables zero CO2 emissions*, increased range, and fast refueling time. It is a large van for transporting goods and packages, with 12m3 of cargo volume and a range of up to 500km that will be made in France and on sale in 2022 if all goes well.

Next prototypes to come include a Master Chassis Cab H2-TECH,a large van with more cargo space (19m3) and a range of about 250km; Master Citybus H2-TECH, an urban minibus that can carry up to 15 passengers for businesses, municipalities, and local public services, with a range of about 300km. Continue reading

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