Tag Archive: Electric vehicles

  1. Micro presents the new Microlino Lite at the Geneva Motor Show

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    • World premiere in Geneva: LEVA-EU member Micro presents the Microlino Lite, an innovative L6e version of the popular Microlino.
    • Accessible for everyone: limited to a top speed of 45 km/h, the Microlino Lite also gives people without a driving license the opportunity to get around safely, protected from the weather and with plenty of «bella figura».
    • Sales launch in early summer 2024: The Microlino Lite is available in two color variants at an entry-level price of 149 CHF/month* and can now be ordered on the Microlino website.

    As part of this year’s Geneva Motor Show, Micro, the innovative Swiss manufacturer of electric vehicles, is unveiling an exciting world first: the Microlino Lite. This new model, an L6e version of the popular Microlino, is designed to make sustainable mobility solutions accessible to a wider audience who do not have a driver’s license.

    The Microlino Lite offers the same range as its «big brother», but the top speed is limited to 45 km/h.

    «The Microlino Lite is our contribution to making sustainable mobility solutions accessible to an even wider community. We recognize the growing need for such mobility, especially among those who want to be safe and protected from the weather without a driver’s license,» explains Merlin Ouboter, Microlino Co-Founder.

    A fresh, young look with new design elements

    The Microlino Lite differs from the standard Microlino model with unique design features. A fresh color scheme emphasizes the contemporary concept of the vehicle, while details in a vibrant orange give the design an energetic touch.

    Accessibility and innovation

    In early summer 2024, Micro will start selling the Microlino Lite at an attractive entry-level price of 149 CHF/month*. Available in two color variants, Venice Blue and Berlin Anthracite, it opens up new mobility routes for people aged 14 and over with an AM (moped) driving license, in accordance with the respective national regulations (further information on the minimum age can be found here).

    Front runner in the L6e category

    With its self-supporting body made of high-strength steel, the Microlino Lite sets new standards in terms of driving dynamics and safety in its vehicle class. With a basic range of approximately 100 km, which can be optionally extended up to 180 km**, it is the perfect companion for everyday use.

    Complemented by outstanding production quality with an outer skin made of steel and aluminum in automotive quality, the sunroof for that convertible feeling in summer and a practical trunk of up to 230 l, it offers a unique package all round. Like its big brother, the Microlino Lite is built in the Microlino factory in the heart of Europe, in Turin, Italy.

    Commitment to the Swiss market

    The Geneva Motor Show, which opens its doors from February 26 to March 3, 2024, marks a spectacular comeback with a new concept after a break of four years. As a proud Swiss manufacturer, Micro is excited to present its vision of sustainable and future-oriented mobility with the Microlino and the brand new Microlino Lite in this new setting. Visitors will also have the opportunity to test drive the standard version of the Microlino directly on site.

    About Micro

    Since its foundation in 1999 by Wim Ouboter, Micro has established itself as a pioneer in the field of urban mobility. With the invention of the first kick scooter specifically designed for urban transportation, Micro coined the term “micromobility”.

    In 2013, Micro expanded its range to include electric mobility and launched its first e-scooter on the market. Since then, the company has continuously developed its electric product lines and launched collaborations with renowned car manufacturers such as Mercedes, Mazda and Peugeot.

    The development of the Microlino, led by Wim Ouboter’s sons Merlin and Oliver, began in 2015. Originally intended as a PR stunt for the Geneva Motor Show, public interest exceeded all expectations, so Micro decided to start series development.

    As a 100% family-owned company, Micro is characterized by a deep commitment to innovation, quality and sustainability. The company has received numerous awards for its products and management, including the Best Design Award for the Microlino, the Fast Company Most Innovative Companies Award, two nominations for the EY Entrepreneur of the Year Award and inclusion in the Forbes 30 under 30 list. More information at www.microlino-car.com.

    Further information on the Microlino Lite can be found at:

    Press contact
    Merlin Ouboter, Co-Founder & CMO Bahnhofstrasse 10, 8700 Küsnacht ZH merlin.ouboter@micro.ms +41 79 837 38 66

    Press Images

    Technical Data Microlino Lite

    *All prices include the currently valid VAT and exclude the delivery fee. Calculation example for the configured vehicle, nominal annual interest rate: 3.99% effective annual interest rate: 4.07%, term: 48 months, mileage: 5,000 km/year, special payment: 25% of the total price. The granting of credit is prohibited if it leads to over-indebtedness on the part of the consumer. Financing via AMAG Leasing AG.

    ** The specified range may be subject to change.

  2. Report suggests 280 million electric bikes and mopeds are reducing global oil demand more than electric cars

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    Source: The Conversation

    In a recent eye-opening report by The Conversation, the focus is on electric bikes and mopeds, revealing their remarkable impact on slashing oil demand, outpacing the effects of electric cars. The article notes that 44% of all Australian commuter trips are by car, particularly for distances under 10km, mirroring trends in wealthier countries like the United States, where 60% of car trips cover less than 10km.

    Contrary to the assumption that electric cars are the go-to solution, the report highlights that for short trips, electric bikes and mopeds, collectively known as electric micromobility, prove to be a more economical and environmentally friendly option. Astoundingly, these micromobility options are displacing four times more demand for oil than all the world’s electric cars combined. This is largely attributed to their widespread adoption in China and other nations where mopeds are a prevalent form of transport.

    The global landscape of electric vehicles (EVs) reveals a stark contrast. While there were over 20 million electric vehicles and 1.3 million commercial EVs on the roads last year, the numbers of two- and three-wheelers eclipse these figures with over 280 million electric mopeds, scooters, motorcycles, and three-wheelers. Bloomberg New Energy Finance estimates that the sheer popularity of these smaller vehicles is already reducing oil demand by about 1% globally, equivalent to a million barrels of oil per day.

    The report challenges the perception of electric cars as an unequivocal solution due to their space consumption, heavy reliance on electricity, and the environmental impact of battery production. In comparison, electric bikes and mopeds emerge as efficient, cost-effective alternatives, particularly for short-hop trips. For instance, commuting on an e-bike 20km a day, five days a week, costs approximately $20 annually in charging.

    As electric micromobility gains traction globally, it offers a unique opportunity to reconsider urban transportation. Smaller electric options like scooters and skateboards address the last-kilometer problem in public transport systems, offering a swift solution for the inconvenient distance between home and transportation hubs. Studies suggest that widespread adoption of e-bikes could lead to a 7% reduction in transport emissions if they account for 11% of all vehicle trips.

    In conclusion, as petrol prices rise and battery costs fall, the cost-effectiveness of electric micromobility, coupled with its potential to significantly cut urban emissions, challenges the dominance of electric cars. As global oil demand is projected to peak in 2028, the report suggests that electric micromobility might play a pivotal role in accelerating the decline, given its rapid adoption and cost advantages. Individuals are encouraged to reassess their transportation needs, considering electric bikes and mopeds for short trips, while keeping electric cars in mind for longer journeys or group outings.

  3. This tiny $13,000 car is Japan’s best-selling EV

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    Source: Business Insider

    • The 11-foot-long Nissan Sakura is Japan’s best-selling electric vehicle, according to data from Bloomberg.
    • The $13,000 “kei car” is strong competition for rivals such as Tesla.
    • Mini kei trucks are taking off in the US, with some being sold for as little as $5,000.

    Tesla may dominate the global EV market but drivers in Japan have found that a $13,000 tiny car is proving a better investment.

    Data collected by Bloomberg shows the Sakura, a $13,000 minicar developed together by Nissan and Mitsubishi, is the best-selling electric car in Japan this year, accounting for approximately half of all EVs sold in the country so far this year. Bloomberg reported that the cost of the vehicle included subsidies from the government.

    The Sakura launched last year and has quickly become a phenomenon in its home country, winning car of the year in 2022 in Japan. The 11-foot-long car has a range of 180 kilometers from a single charge and can get up to speeds of 130 kilometers an hour.

    The interior of the Nissan Sakura

    With 35,099 vehicles sold this year, the Sakura has outperformed its rivals by a long way, including Tesla. The automaker, owned by Elon Musk, may dominate the Western EV market, but in Japan, its larger passenger cars lag behind smaller electric vehicles known as “kei cars.”

    This makes it a more challenging market for Tesla, which has slashed prices of its Model 3 and Y electric cars in Japan earlier this year. The Chinese EV giant BYD, backed by Warren Buffett and closing in on Tesla globally, has also started selling its cars in Japan in January.

    Kei cars are extremely popular in Japan, especially in rural areas that have little public transport. Their cousins, kei trucks, have also increased in demand in the US in recent years.

    Kei trucks including the Daihatsu Hijet have become more and more popular in the US 

    11 foot long pick-up trucks, such as the Suzuki Carry and the Daihatsu Hijet, can cost as little as $5,000 and are very economical to run, although vehicles under 25 years old are subject to tight restrictions in the US.

    Despite this, they have become popular in parts of rural America, with the diminutive Japanese vehicles being used on ranches, as delivery vehicles, and even as beekeeper wagons.

  4. Fernhay eQuad: last-mile delivery efficiency

    Comments Off on Fernhay eQuad: last-mile delivery efficiency

    LEVA-EU member Fernhay developed the eQuad as a compact, agile and flexible solution for last-mile logistics.

    Efficiency in urban areas is, increasingly, an essential component of sustainable and comfortable city living. Populations are shifting towards urban centres, meaning that all the operations which keep the flow of goods and people moving need to be as streamlined as possible.

    The eQuad electric delivery vehicle is Fernhay’s green-tech solution for efficient inner-city logistics, specifically designed to be a crucial cog in the machinery of supply chain logistics. Last-mile deliveries, where goods are delivered from a transportation hub to end recipients, often face challenges such as congested traffic and delays, and are subject to environmental concerns. The eQuad provides solutions to these challenges:

    • Customisable solutions: tailored to customers’ requirements for specific logistical needs and varied urban features.
    • Compact and agile: A narrow design allows easy manoeuvring through busy urban streets.
    • Zero emissions: electrically powered, eQuad operates without tailpipe emissions, contributing towards cleaner urban air.

    Fernhay sees the eQuad as an essential part of an efficient city, representing a shift in thinking – from traditionally accepted, but inefficient, practices, to more sustainable and innovative solutions. As more businesses and city planners adopt tools such as the eQuad, the cumulative effect can lead to significantly more efficient, and less polluted, urban spaces.

  5. Political opposition to 2035 combustion engine legislation comes too late

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    Source: EURACTIV, S. Goulding Carroll

    The European Parliament’s ballot to ban the sales of new petrol and diesel engine vehicles from 2035 has been opposed by a number of national politicians and MEPs, who comment that the move is a disastrous strain. Despite their energised concerns, it is almost inconceivable that the treaty will be reversed.

    The European Union’s directive is regarded as too complex and authoritative for many politicians to involve themselves in, significant when considering it affects all of Europe. However, by taking on board the research and understanding the statistics, it can be considered that more support can be generated and less blame directed to the EU.

    Politicians have an ability to accuse Brussels-based bureaucrats as being out-of-touch with citizens, and passing legislations to win favour with specific European country leaders. This stance can be viewed as unfounded considering that democracy is adhered to, and every member state has a chance to oppose European Commission legislations. Consensus from each country is pursued in the majority of cases.

    A recent example of opposition to the 2035 bid was submitted by Italy’s Transport Minister, Matteo Salvini, who remarked that the change to EVs was “suicide”, supported by Foreign Minister Antomio Tajamni who is proposing a bid to save the combustion engine. Unfortunately for these (and other) opposing politicians, the Italian government under Marion Draghi had already agreed to the EU directive.

    The European Parliament’s largest political group, the EPP, also condemned the 2035 combustion engine ban, with German legislator Jens Gieseke commenting, “Europe is driving its automotive industry towards a dead end. Today’s decision on banning combustion engines will make new cars more expensive, cost thousands of jobs and lead to the decline of a core European industry”.

    Because the ballot has already been passed, it is regarded that such criticism is aired to win favour with the local communities who are perhaps opposed to Green and Socialist parties’ directives, and will come to nothing.

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