Welcome to today’s “Cleantech Talk Today” discussion of fresh electric vehicle (EV) news. In this daily podcast and video series, we talk about anything electric that moves, crawls, flies, rides, drives, swims, swings, or skips.
Zach Shahan and I take you on a daily tour of what we consider to be the most fascinating EV and other cleantech news.
The Tesla Corner
In this episode, we again discussed several interesting Tesla stories. Who’s surprised?
Tesla is finally on the verge of delivering on its 15-year-old goal of bringing an affordable, mass-produced EV to market, and that has massive implications for the models and automakers this car is competing against. Watch as we dive further into the Tesla merry-go-round and cut to the essential bottom line. OK, short story: that bottom line is that the Model 3 is starting to disrupt other automakers in its first few months of production. Oh, how gray those heads must be and how dark the atmosphere in those shareholder meetings for the bigger, less agile OEMs…
But why is the Model 3 already outselling other electric cars by such a wide margin? Well, it comes down to batteries — batteries, batteries, batteries.
Where does this leave Nissan, Carlos Ghosn, and Ghosn’s statement that range is no longer a problem, that Nissan’s new strategy is to focus on affordability? And how does that relate to Ghosn’s talks with CATL for future battery needs?
As we briefly mentioned as well, different Tesla battery packs charge at different speeds, which is interesting for a few reasons. And it’s pretty crazy, but this Silicon Valley teenager just opened its 10,000th Supercharger — less than a decade after the first one went live. Who has done better?
Who Will Follow First?
Closing out the day yesterday was a long article from Zach exploring the question of which legacy automakers will switch 100% to electric vehicles first. We discussed this at length as well. Who will it be — Jaguar? BMW? Nissan? Fiat?
The Chinese CATL Surprise, Batteries For EV Mass Production
It has always been hard to estimate the impact of Chinese companies on the automotive world, but we’re starting to get a picture. CATL might not be in everyone’s first thoughts when they think EVs, but it seems the giant Chinese battery maker will be working closely with Daimler, Volkswagen, Porsche, BMW, Nissan, and Renault — to name a few — to advance the EV revolution around the world. At the moment, Tesla + Panasonic may be separating themselves from the pack as the world’s largest EV battery production team, but it appears that CATL is determined to give Tesla + Panasonic a run for their money.
The Kitty Hawk Project Is Now The Flyer!
The Kitty Hawk project took off years ago with the eager attention of millions of technically savvy readers on independent, free, and untied-to-the-industry news outlets like CleanTechnica. Today, through CNN, we find out that the Kitty Hawk is no longer and has been renamed to The Flyer, and that it has gone on a test flight. Thus, we celebrate the progress but rant a bit about why cleantech companies shouldn’t burn their base.