Hydrogen Fuel News tells us India has its first hydrogen fueled bus. Tata Motors Limited and the Indian Space Research Organization have been working for several years to develop an hydrogen fuel cell to power the vehicle. The technology allows the bus to handle liquid hydrogen. The hydrogen cylinders are mounted on the bus’s roof. The fuel system involves hydrogen being converted into alternate current (AC) to drive the electric engine. The bus is now undergoing tests at ISRO’s Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre in Mahendragiri in Tamil Nadu, in southern India. See also NGV Global News, Indian Space Research Generates Fuel Cells for H2 Bus. Hydrogen is a clean energy source that produces zero greenhouse gas emissions.

The Engineer looks at the evolution of driverless cars while bcs announces that Nissan has joined the race to produce these vehicles. ‘We will be able to bring multiple, affordable, fully autonomous vehicles to the market by 2020,’ said Andy Palmer, Executive Vice President, Nissan. See also Automovtive News, Nissan follows bold EV moves with vow of self-driving cars by 2020. General Motors also hopes to have a version of a driverless car by 2020 according to Daily TechNews Daily covers this development in Self-driving cars could be on US roads by 2020.

All this buzz about driverless cars has led one analyst to warn Canada needs to get ready for self-driving cars. The Globe and Mail quotes Paul Godsmark, a former highway designer:

“This technology is going to hit us a bit like a tidal wave. And if we’re ready, great. And if we’re not, tough. It’s coming anyway.”

SBWire forecasts the global low emission vehicle market is expected to grow from $27.45 billion in 2012 to $103.13 billion by 2017.  8.3 million low emission vehicles were shipped around the globe in 2011 and this number is expected to reach 35.3 million units by 2017. The category low emissions vehicles includes hybrids and pure electric technology and applies to all types of vehicles – cars, trucks, buses, e-bikes.

New research by market research firm Frost and Sullivan forecasts global sales of electric cars will rise by 50% as a result from 120,000 units in 2012 to between 170,000 and 190,000 this year. By 2018, it expects worldwide sales to top 2.7 million, as the market expands beyond business fleets to private ownership. The growth of the electric car market is also expected to bring down retail prices for EVs reports This is Lincolnshire. UK prices have already fallen 18% this year and more intense price competition is expected with the introduction of new models over the next year.

From the Tokyo Times we find a global survey says consumers in Russia and Japan have the greatest interest in electric cars. This comes from a recent survey by research company GFK which explored the consumer attitudes of six different countries – Russia, Japan, China, France, Spain and the US. Japanese consumers say electric cars are ‘easy to operate,’ ‘safe’ and ‘reliable’. However, in general the survey found “The main barrier is that EVs are seen as having a high purchase price and high maintenance costs.”

Another global survey gives us 7 Key Points About Potential Electric Car Buyers. The Motley Fool summarizes the key findings of a survey of 13,000 people in 17 countries on 5 continents – Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Korea, Spain, Taiwan, Turkey, the UK and the US.  A large majority in the US, Germany, France, Japan and Belgium want a minimum range of 200 miles for their EVs. In addition there is little acceptance of long battery charging times. Except for China, India and Korea, over half of respondents in every country said they would refuse to pay a price premium for an EV. Most respondents won’t pay more than $30,000 for an electric car. If fuel efficiencies in fossil fuel cars reached 50 miles per gallon, more than half the people would lose interest in electric cars, except in France, Germany, Japan, Spain and Turkey.

Wired argues that battery charging time, not range, is the most important issue for potential EV buyers.

“We don’t have a range issue. We have a charging issue.”

CleanBiz Asia reports the electric bicycles (e-bicycles) market should be worth $10.8 billion by 2020, led by buyers in Asia Pacific. According to a recent report from Navigant Research, worldwide revenue from e-bicycles will grow from $8.4 billion in 2013 to $10.8 billion in 2020. Demand is being driven by glowing urbanization and traffic congestion on city streets as wells as lower cost lithium batteries. Many in the industry believe lithium iron phosphate will become the most e-bicycle-friendly battery technology, because of its combination of thermal stability and long life.

By the end of this year Beijing will have 1000 electric taxis according to CleanBiz Asia. To help reduce the city’s pollution, which has been hitting record levels in recent months, the Chinese government provides a subsidy of CNY3,000 ($489) per month for electric taxis.  The city has around 66,000 taxis in total.

Hydrogen Fuel News answers everything you wanted to know about electric cars. Meanwhile, The Economic Voice compares hybrids with full electric vehicles.

From the Detroit News we learn that 35% of US electric car sales are in two cities – Los Angeles and San Francisco. Other top US markets for electric vehicle registrations this year are Seattle, Atlanta and New York.










Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,