Mitsubishi Revives the Lancer with the e-Evolution Concept

After much speculation over the future of the Lancer Evolution, which phased out of production last year, Mitsubishi has finally announced plans to revive it as an electrified SUV at this October’s Tokyo Motor Show.

The first teaser photo of the e-Evolution concept shows very little about the car, other than a bumper diffuser and a sharply angled, aerodynamically focused roof. Initial reports suggest a coupe-like SUV chassis, an electric powertrain, and self-driving capability. No word yet if it is a plug-in hybrid or an EV.

The e-Evolution concept is the progeny of a new strategy emphasizing the increased use of electrification, self-driving, connectivity, and more streamlined operations across partners Renault and Nissan, part of the Renault-0Nissan Mitsubishi Alliance.

A new six-year mandate calls for 12 new electric models and a 30 percent reduction in battery costs by 2022. Also specified are a minimum range and charging time requirement for batteries along with plans to launch a new self-driving taxi service.

Many had breathed a collective sigh of relief with Nissan’s purchase of a controlling stake in the brand last year. According to Carlos Ghosn, CEO, “we intend to deliver on growing synergies, with three autonomous companies cooperating with the efficiency of one. The alliance has grown and performed with two members since 1999; with ‘Alliance 2022’ we will prove that we will grow and perform with three companies or more.”

Immediately, this should alleviate concerns over Mitsubishi’s stalling of key initiatives in recent years, such as last year’s fifth postponement of the Outlining PHEV since its 2013 Japan launch.

Look for the unveiling of the e-Evolution at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show from Oct. 25 to Nov. 5.

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Foreign makers might build electric cars in China, but rumored rule change has a catch

Venucia E30 (Chinese version of Nissan Leaf electric car), Guangzhou Auto Show [photo: ChinaAutoWeb]China’s announcement 10 days ago that it was assessing a timetable for ending sales of new cars with gasoline or diesel engines continues to reverberate. The country intends to dominate global production of lithium-ion battery cells and electric vehicles, for a host of reasons from industrial power through air pollution to energy security. A new…

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Ex-Tesla Worker Says Timing of Firing Cost Him Shares

A former Telsa employee is suing the company, saying that it fired him just one day before he would have been entitled to almost a quarter million dollars in stock options.

Stephen Platt was a machinist working at Tesla’s Fremont factory. According to Platt, he was hired on Aug. 27, 2012, and fired on Aug. 26, 2013.

When he took the job, Platt said he had been offered 2,500 shares of Tesla stock, with one-quarter of that scheduled to vest 12 months after his first day of employment. He would have been able to purchase 625 shares for $27.37 each after a year of work. The day he was terminated, Tesla shares were trading at $164.22 each. Today the shares would be worth more than $240,000 total.

Platt’s court filing said that he had been told he would be getting a raise for his performance the month before his dismissal.

SEE ALSO: Pro-Union Tesla Workers Increase Pressure As Factory Ramps Up For Model 3

A Tesla spokesperson told Bloomberg in an email statement that Platt had a documented record of poor performance. It also said that although he isn’t entitled to the stock, that Tesla would take a look at the circumstances and do what’s fair.

Platt and his attorney are seeking class-action status for all employees who joined the company under the same terms. The suit estimates that to be at least 200 former workers.

“Tesla is cheating its employees out of stock options that they are entitled to, and they are worth a significant amount of money,” Yosef Peretz, Platt’s San Francisco-based attorney, said in an interview with Bloomberg.

The allegations have yet to be heard in court.


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India Aiming To Go All Electric By 2030

India, the world’s fifth-biggest auto market with a population of 1.3 billion people, is looking to solidify its standing as an electric vehicle superpower with a governmental mandate to sell only electric cars by 2030.

The reasons for transitioning to all-electric sales by 2030 are numerous. Indian’s air pollution is worsening at alarming rates, contributing to 1.2 million deaths a year. Also, Paris climate agreement conditions call for India to reduce its global emissions. Thirdly, India is heavily dependent on oil imports with a projected $85 billion in 2018 expenditures, according to India’s oil ministry.

The ambitious plan affects shorter term goals as well. According to the Indian government’s National Electric Mobility Mission Plan, a mandate calling for national fuel security by promoting hybrid and electric vehicle use in the country, its target is to drive annual sales of six to seven million electric vehicles in the next three years. According to India’s road transport minister Nitin Gadkari in a Sept. 7 statement to SIAM, India’s automobile lobby group, “we should move towards alternative fuel. I am going to do this, whether you like it or not.”

Already, India’s government is setting the tone with new governmental regulations designed to increase adoption. In December, a new national EV policy will provide guidelines on vehicle specifications, incentive types, and explore methods of offsetting the cost of batteries using subsidies.

“The government needs to subsidize battery and lithium imports or incentivize companies to set up this business in India,” said Yaquta Mandviwala, a partner at Bain & Company.

Lastly, India is also forging relationships with battery builders. On Sept. 14, Suzuki announced its plan to build a $600 million lithium-ion-battery factory. Cummins India and Ashok Leyland, engine and bus manufacturers, have announced partnerships with startups for battery swapping system and laid out plans to expedite research on electric solutions.

Source: Quartz India

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