What Changed In The Electric Vehicle Industry In August?

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August was a big and wild month for electric vehicles, especially for Tesla. Scroll through the summary below to get your monthly dose of the biggest changes and trends in the electric vehicles industry.


Radisson Blu and Tesla have partnered to offer free Tesla charging while you stay at any Radisson Blu hotel.

Citizen tracking of Tesla Model 3 production and deliveries indicate that the company is on track to produce over 50,000 Model 3s in the 3rd quarter and that at least 17 Model 3s have been designated for Europe (probably for testing there). Analysts also determined that Tesla Model 3 production has far fewer steps than typical car production (of gasoline cars).

Some simple math also determined that the high selling Model 3 was probably the #1 highest revenue-generating car in the US in August and the 5th highest selling car in terms of units. I also reported that it seemed Tesla car sales would beat BMW car sales, and that was true.

Tesla offered owners who don’t already have Autopilot 14 day trials of the semi-autonomous driving suite. No word yet on how many of them decided to bite the bullet and buy Autopilot after that. Our own Kyle Field didn’t.

By the way, Tesla has been dead for 10 years … or not. Nonetheless, the company has been getting slammed from major media outlets like CNBC and the New York Times as if it should be dead. What a shame — it’s such a great American success story pushing the world toward cleaner air, a safer climate, and more fun!

Tesla also announced that its Gigafactory would be 100% powered by solar by the end of 2019. The Gigafactory, by the way, continues to exceed the performance targets it set with the state of Nevada.

The company also announced it is doubling its global mobile service fleet this year.

Tesla considered going private, but stayed public … even thought the press showed exactly why Tesla would have benefitted from going private.

On the fun side of things, Jay Leno got to play with the next-gen Tesla Roadster. Also, video streaming is coming to Tesla vehicles soon as well as Atari games and “camper mode.”

Other Electric Cars

The Hyundai Kona got a stunning 258 mile range rating from the EPA.

The Renault Zoe made it to Australia, finally.

The 2019 Chevy Volt will apparently get a charging boost with a 7.2 kW Level 2 charging option.

The Nissan–Dongfeng joint venture started producing the Sylphy Zero Emissions (Chinese LEAF) in China.

On the US and European side of the world, it was revealed that Nissan’s 2019 LEAF would again have a bigger battery, potentially breaking 200 miles of range for the first time.

After much success in China, Kandi is bringing its cars to the US, starting with the K22 subcompact and the EX3 compact SUV. Pricing for the small guy starts under $20,000.

Jaguar will offer electric conversions of its XK-E roadster.

VW launched a new electric carsharing program in Berlin, Germany — We Share.

In the USA, VW started its forced Electrify America ad campaign.

Vacuum specialist Dyson announced it is putting $150 million into an electric car test track at Hullavington airfield. In other words, the company is quite serious about becoming an electric car manufacturer.

Russian gun manufacturer Kalashnikov decided it should get into the electric car game as well, via the retro Kalashnikov CV-1.

Byton Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance 2018

China-backed EV startup Byton brought its prototype K-Byte and M-Byte to the 2018 Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. Byton and Aurora teamed up to test autonomous cars in the USA.

While we’re on this beat, we should also mention that it leaked the Saudi sovereign wealth fund was interested in investing in Lucid Motors, which it just did, to the tune of $1 billion.

China-backed Faraday Future, meanwhile, came back from the dead with an $854 million cash infusion from Evergrande Health for 45% of the company.

Waymo autonomous van

Waymo opened an office in Shanghai. Waymo also announced it would be launching paid service in the US later this year.

Electric utility vehicle manufacturer Tropos Motors rolled out a new lithium-ion battery pack for its vehicles that quadruples the range and delivers increased safety for customers.

Big EV Sales Updates

This is not really “changed in August” news, but we have to slip in big EV sales reports.

Europe’s plug-in car sales increased 42% in H1 2018 relative to H1 2017. In July, the increase was 30% and EV market share sat at 2.2%.

Beating Europe again, China’s electric car sales were up 64% in July, with 3.9% market share in the month and 3% market share in the first half of the year.


Bosch introduced an eCityTruck electrification solution for light commercial vehicles.

EV battery factories continued to ramp up their production capacity … we presume.

A Tesla-based shuttle service between Calgary and Edmonton, InOrbis, launched.

The solar-powered Airbus Zephyr S set a world record by staying aloft for 26 days.

A couple of Danish brothers set a new 1/4 mile electric doorslammer world record.

Shell Ventures invested $31 million into Ample.

And Centrica invested millions of pounds into Driivz.

And, I have to add, we added another Nissan LEAF to the CleanTechnica writer fleet, joining another LEAF (that’s on the way out next month), a BMW i3, a Tesla Model 3, and a Tesla Model S. That’s big news, right?

Oh yeah, and I got to chat with Elon Musk.


→ Last month’s roundup: What Changed In The EV Industry In June & July?


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Zachary Shahan

Zach is tryin' to help society help itself one word at a time. He spends most of his time here on CleanTechnica as its director, chief editor, and CEO. Zach is recognized globally as an electric vehicle, solar energy, and energy storage expert. He has presented about cleantech at conferences in India, the UAE, Ukraine, Poland, Germany, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada, and Curaçao. Zach has long-term investments in Tesla [TSLA], NIO [NIO], Xpeng [XPEV], Ford [F], ChargePoint [CHPT], Amazon [AMZN], Piedmont Lithium [PLL], Lithium Americas [LAC], Albemarle Corporation [ALB], Nouveau Monde Graphite [NMGRF], Talon Metals [TLOFF], Arclight Clean Transition Corp [ACTC], and Starbucks [SBUX]. But he does not offer (explicitly or implicitly) investment advice of any sort.

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