A new survey from Bloomberg Intelligence (BI) on auto-buying intentions finds that EU automakers’ battery-electric vehicle (BEV) growth goals look ambitious, with just 16 per cent of private buyers in Europe favouring them. 44 per cent opting for hybrids that play to BMW, Mercedes and Toyota’s strengths and disadvantage pure-play Tesla. Few charging points, range anxiety and high prices are the top concerns amongst respondents. The inaugural auto-buying questionnaire surveyed 1,500 adults planning to buy a car in the next 12 months in the five largest European markets of Germany, UK, France, Italy and Spain – together these making up about 75 per cent of the region’s sales.
ZC Rubber has entered into a strategic partnership with electric vehicle manufacturer Zhejiang Leapmotor Technology Co Ltd (Leapmotor) to deepen their mutual cooperation in the automotive sector. ZC Rubber doesn’t share specific details about this new cooperation but notes that it builds upon the tyre maker’s role as “one of the most important original equipment partners of Leapmotor.”
Teams competing in this year’s Bridgestone World Solar Challenge (BWSC) will drive on the first motorsport tyres to feature Enliten technology. Furthermore, one of the tyre specifications that Bridgestone custom designed for the 1,860-mile (3,000 km) route through Australia contains 63 per cent recycled and renewable materials.
Iconic British automotive manufacturer, MOKE International, has announced that the Electric MOKE is the first electric vehicle to achieve the M1 Small Series Type Approval, enabling the sale of the model in the European Union, up to 1,500 units. The first heritage automotive manufacturer to go fully electric in 2022, its Electric MOKE is a no-emissions recreation of the iconic Mini MOKE – beloved by the likes of The Beatles, The Beach Boys and Brigitte Bardot. It is also the only vehicle with no roof and no doors to have achieved European certification as a road-legal car.
Given the importance of decarbonising transport to reach net zero, the House of Lords Environment and Climate Change Committee launched an inquiry into electric vehicles (EVs) on Wednesday 9 August. The call for evidence is available online here. The aim of the inquiry is to understand how the Government will achieve its target of decarbonising cars and vans in the UK, with a particular focus on passenger cars, as well as exploring the main barriers to doing so. It will also seek to understand the costs, alongside the benefits, associated with the 2030 end date of sales of new petrol and diesel cars and vans in the UK, and Government progress towards both its 2030 and 2035 deadlines.
According to the latest IMI EV Technician Forecast Report, the total number of technicians trained to work safely on electric vehicles by the end of Quarter 1 2023 was 42,400, representing 18 per cent of all technicians in the UK. However, the number of newly-qualified EV technicians in the first three months of this year is actually 10 per cent lower than the same period in 2022. More concerning, the IMI projects that for the second quarter there will be an even more substantial decline of 31 per cent in technicians obtaining EV qualifications compared to Quarter 2 2022.
The Institute of the Motor Industry (IMI) has welcomed Tata’s decision to locate a multi-billion-pound electric car battery plant in Somerset, while emphasising the need for additional government support to “filter down” to the aftermarket. Steve Nash, CEO of the IMI, said: “There is no question that this is great news for the UK economy, with the prospect of thousands of jobs. For the UK to become a centre of excellence in the electric battery field is crucial for future decarbonisation ambitions. Such a sign of intent from the UK government to support the Tata decision is encouraging for the whole automotive sector. What we now need is for that intent to filter down to the aftermarket too.”
Aston Martin aims to “create the world’s most thrilling and highly desirable electric performance cars” and says its upcoming BEV models will feature P Zero tyres and Pirelli Cyber Tyre. But it is not planning to depart the ICE stage quietly, and in celebration of its 110th anniversary has revealed the Michelin-shod V12 Valour.
Nearly half of UK motorists will make the switch to an electric vehicle in the next five years despite heightened concerns about charging point infrastructure and range anxiety, a survey commissioned by tyre manufacturer Bridgestone suggests. The survey of 2,000 UK car owners was conducted online by Research Without Barriers (RWB) between 23 February 2023 and 28 February 2023. 40 per cent said they would buy an EV by 2028, up 11 per cent from a similar result in a 2022 survey conducted by YouGov for Bridgestone (29 per cent),. 67 per cent raised fears about the availability of charging stations, a rise of 1 per cent versus 2022, while half of all respondents continue to have range anxiety, an increase of 21 per cent over the 2022 survey.
Used electric vehicle (EV) values could fall by a further 5-10% in the next few months, the latest Vehicle Remarketing Association (VRA) member meeting was told. Giving a presentation on market trends for different fuel types, Dean Bowkett of Bowkett Consulting said there continued to be an imbalance between used EV supply and demand, despite recent dramatic falls in value.
Hankook Tire reports that it has entered into a strategic partnership with Chinese electric vehicle manufacturer Leapmotor. It begins this arrangement with tyre supply to the Leapmotor C11, an all-electric SUV that will wear Hankook Ventus S1 evo3 ev tyres as an original equipment fitment in a 20-inch size. Moving forwards, Hankook Tire and Leapmotor intend to embark on further joint projects.
Goodyear wishes to address the “common misconception” that drivers view tyres as a pure commodity and don’t differentiate among different types and brands. Looking at the outcome of the Ipsos Category drivers and segmentation study 2022, which took place in France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain and the UK, Goodyear sees that a growing number of consumers believe having the right tyres is crucial. These tyre buyers look at performance characteristics before making their choice.
A new poll by car insurer NFU Mutual found that over half of motorists think petrol and diesel cars are now cheapest to run. As the cost of electricity rises, just 18 per cent thought a fully electric vehicle would be cheaper, while 11 per cent said a plug-in hybrid would be cheapest. This is in stark contrast to last year, when a survey found 57 per cent said cheaper running costs were an incentive to switch to electric vehicles (EVs). However, motor experts at NFU Mutual show EVs are still significantly cheaper to run when charged economically and have many other cost benefits too.
The new, full-electric Smart #1 is the first Smart model developed by the joint venture between Mercedes-Benz and Chinese carmaker Geely. Launch photos released by Smart Europe last year let the Continental cat out of the tyre supply bag, and Continental has now confirmed worldwide supply for the SUV in 18” & 19” tyre sizes.
The number of electric and hybrid-electric cars on the road is growing, and Tecalemit has introduced a lifting solution that addresses this change in the vehicle parc. It says the two-post Azur SF/9235/EVR offers a “comprehensive range of features to meet the needs of modern workshops” and as such represents the “future of vehicle lifting solutions.”