Headlines 

Audi’s New Electric-Car Factory Goes Green

You’ve heard the story: Exchange your old-fashioned internal combustion engine for an electric one, and change the world. Turns out it’s more complicated than that. While driving an electric car generally saves on emissions, building one is way more energy-intensive than building a regular gasoline-based vehicle. It’s costly, energy-wise, to procure and process lithium for batteries and to create complex, lightweight materials, like carbon fiber, that help EVs extend their range. One analysis from the science advocacy organization Union of Concerned Scientists found that manufacturing an electric vehicle results in…

Read More
Headlines 

Boeings 737 Crash, Teslas Model Y, and More News This Week

Here at WIRED Transportation, we get to write about all sorts of stuff. Self-driving cars. Hyperloops. Bike lane design. Subway maps. The occasional man dressed up as a car seat for an apparently legitimate purpose. You get the idea. So it’s rare when a mere one or two topics dominate our pages for an entire week. But that’s what happened over the past seven days. The first of those stories started Sunday morning, when a Boeing 737 MAX 8 jet operated by Ethiopian Airlines crashed a few minutes after taking…

Read More
Odds and Ends 

Audis e-tron GT concept is an all-electric sedan with some Porsche DNA

Audi is making room in its electric future for more than SUVs or crossovers. After a string of teasers, the German automaker finally unveiled the Audi e-tron GT concept, a four-door all-electric coupe that has some Porsche DNA sprinkled in and that looks a lot like the A7. Audi introduced the concept Wednesday during the press days of the L.A. Auto Show. The GT concept follows the September reveal of the automaker’s first all-electric vehicle, the Audi e-tron SUV that is expected to go into volume production next year. The…

Read More
Headlines 

The Terrible Timing of Tesla’s Expiring $7,500 Tax Credit

Just a few weeks after finally reaching its goal of building 5,000 Model 3 sedans in a week, Tesla has hit another threshold: Earlier this month, it sold its 200,000th car in the US. This milestone, however, is more cause for concern than celebration: From here on out, Elon Musk's customers will start to lose access to the $7,500 federal tax credit that softens the blow of buying an expensive electric. The tax credit scheme dates to the 2008 Energy Improvement and Extension Act, which boosted the budding electric car…

Read More
Headlines 

China and the Children Will Save the Electric Car From Scott Pruitt’s EPA

Efforts to put cleaner cars on American roads are being threatened. In a few days, The New York Times reports, the Environmental Protection Agency will move to weaken the regulations that demand automakers producer cleaner and more efficient vehicles. The existing standards, which Barack Obama pushed for in 2012, demand each automaker nearly double the average fuel efficiency of its cars, to deliver 36 miles per gallon. But before President Donald Trump, EPA head Scott Pruitt, or anyone else can knock that number down, they must tangle with California. The…

Read More
Headlines 

Teslas China Dream Threatened by Standoff Over Shanghai Factory

Tesla Inc., the biggest-selling electric carmaker in the U.S., is in danger of being relegated to an expensive niche in China because Elon Musk can't clinch a deal to open a factory there. More than seven months after Tesla said it was working with Shanghai's government to explore assembling cars, an agreement hasn't been finalized because the two sides disagree on the ownership structure for a proposed factory, according to people with direct knowledge of the situation. China's central government says the plant must be a joint venture with local…

Read More
Headlines 

The Potential Pitfalls of Electric Cars, in 5 Charts

If we're going to put the brakes on climate change, electric cars will be crucial. At least, that's the general consensus: Get the heck out of that Hummer, and into something without an exhaust pipe. At least seven countries plan to ban the sale of cars with internal combustion engines sometime in the next few decades, and the specter of losing out on markets like the UK, France, and most of all China (the world's biggest car buyer) has pushed the auto industry to mobilize. This week, Ford announced plans…

Read More
Headlines 

Bitcoin Could End Up Using More Power Than Electric Cars

The global power needed to create cryptocurrencies this year could rival the entire electricity consumption of Argentina and be a growth driver for renewable energy producers from the U.S. to China. Miners of bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies could require up to 140 terawatt-hours of electricity in 2018, about 0.6 percent of the global total, Morgan Stanley analysts led by Nicholas Ashworth wrote in a note Wednesday. That’s more than expected power demand from electric vehicles in 2025. “If cryptocurrencies continue to appreciate we expect global mining power consumption to increase,”…

Read More
Headlines 

Teslas Newest Promises Break the Laws of Batteries

Elon Musk knows how to make promises. Even by his own standards, the promises made last week while introducing two new Tesla vehicles—the heavy-duty Semi Truck and the speedy Roadster—are monuments of envelope pushing. To deliver, according to close observers of battery technology, Tesla would have to far exceed what is currently thought possible. Take the Tesla Semi: Musk vowed it would haul an unprecedented 80,000 pounds for 500 miles on a single charge, then recharge 400 miles of range in 30 minutes. That would require, based on Bloomberg estimates, a charging system that's 10 times more…

Read More
Odds and Ends 

Qualcomm demonstrates driving while charging

Qualcomm Technologies has been working on a wireless charging system for electric vehicles called Halo. Now its taken the idea a step further a Halo on the go, if you will. The dynamic electric vehicle charging (DEVC) system can charge electric vehicles as they drive over the charger. Halo DEVC, as its called, is in very early stages. Qualcomm set up a 100-meter test track at Versailles, France, and equipped two Renault Kangoo EVs with the receiving parts of the charger. The test demonstrated that the cars can be charged…

Read More
Odds and Ends 

The first EV showcase opens in Oregon

Chevy Bolt, Nissan Leaf. Staff will be on hand to help youtest e-bikes and learn about charging options and tax breaks that are available for EVs. You can also rent the cars through Sierra Club tackled last year. It turned out that manufacturers were not advertising their plug-in vehicles at nearly the same frequency as their gasoline-powered vehicles. Despite that lack of EV love from the manufacturers, the

Read More
Odds and Ends 

Volkswagens I.D. CROZZ electric concept aims for 2020 production

Electric production vehicles may be relatively rare, but electric concepts abound, and most of them are targeting 2020 for a rough production date, as is the Volkswagen I.D. CROZZ, an all-electric design whose name I hope dies in a horrible fire between now and whenever (if ever) it does end up hitting the street. The name does do one thing adequately well it conveys that this is a crossover, that adulated category of vehicle everyone everywhere is going gaga over lately. We once called these small SUVs or large hatchbacks,…

Read More