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Azure Dynamics to Supply 1,000 Electric Vehicle Systems to Electro Autos of Mexico for Conversions

9 April 2007

Tsuru_ext_02
The Nissan Tsuru.

Azure Dynamics Corporation has signed a supply agreement with Electro Autos Eficaces of Mexico (EAE). The initial order is for 1,000 drive systems for integration into the Nissan Tsuru—a vehicle based on an earlier generation model of the Nissan Sentra—which is commonly used in the municipal fleet of Mexico City.

The Tsurus are being converted from gasoline-powered vehicles to electric vehicles as part of Mexico City Mayor Marcelo Ebrard’s initiative to improve air quality and general health and quality of life in the city.

Mayor Ebrard will drive the first converted vehicle to the International Electric Vehicle Forum on 8 May 2007 in Mexico City. The balance of the 1,000 vehicles will be converted over the following 18 months. Azure’s scope of supply for the 1,000 drive systems includes the motor, controller, gearbox and DC-DC converters and is valued at more than C$7.0 million (US$6.1 million).

The agreement also includes the potential for Azure to supply a broad range of electric and hybrid electric drive systems and components for various other vehicle applications in Mexico.

With a population of approximately 25 million people, Mexico City is the third-largest city in the world and currently operates more than 25,000 Nissan Tsurus to conduct government business throughout the city.

April 9, 2007 in Electric (Battery) | Permalink | Comments (20) | TrackBack (0)

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Comments

Every time I hear someone complain about California's automobile pollution laws, I tell them to compare L.A.'s air with Mexico City. Mexico is a good example of what you would have with lax air laws.

Would they not be better off converting the other 24000 cars to CNG rather than electric ?
Or taking the worst 1000 cars off the roads.

It depends on your motive:
- greenwashing - go electric
- improving air quality - remove worst vehicles or go CNG
- Energy security - CNG
- learning about EVs, electric

I would be interested in hearing how going electric is greenwashing. Studies that I have seen conclude that electric is better than gas, even considering the pollution emitted by the pertinent power plants. This may be even more true of Mexico City, assuming that the pollution controls on cars there don't come near U.S. standards. On the other hand, one would also have to consider the mix of power plants feeding those cars and the pollution controls on those plants. Until there is a full study done of the situation in Mexico, I think it is premature to conclude that this EV effort is greenwashing. In any event, it would seem that the specific locale of Mexico City would benefit. As it is, it is one of the most polluted and unhealthy cities in the world.

Beyond that, I think Mexico City might demonstrate the idea that tons of automobiles in a city with that particular profile is incompatible with a decent environment regardless of what they do. Mexico City should have the ultimate goal of removing virtually all autos from the city. Just another case of so called superior beings (the human type) fouling their own nest.

In other news, the auto companies are challenging the attempt by Vermont and others to adopt California's rules to cut carbon dioxide. On the one hand, they tell us about all this great new technology they are working on; on the other, they resist attempts to make real progress tooth and nail. Congress needs to step in soon to fix this mess, rather than let this thing drag out through the courts. Of course, there is also the little problem that Bush is still in the White House. But yeh, he claims he is making progress. If he can just figure out where to put that electric plug.

Oh, and this time I'm not simply bashing GM. Toyota has joined this suit; I guess they're concerned someone might cut into their Tundra sales. It is critical that we be able to drive multi ton trucks like they are Porsche. And oh yeh, you never can tell when you might have to stop from going over a cliff at 70 mph.

Natural gas? On the particulate front, that would seem like an improvement. On the greenhouse side, it is not so clear. Methane itself is much more potent than carbon dioxide.

Why would CNG be better than electricity as far as energy security? Where is this CNG coming from and where is the fossil fuel to power the electric plants coming from?

Why convert to CNG if you know that nat gas won't be available at a reasonable price in a few years? Electricity can be generated from about a dozen different fuels including wind, solar, and nukes.

I agree, any combustion type engine is prone to the fuel shortages/availability problems that are facing the world with gasoline. Electricity is the obvious choice even though the battery issues have not been fully resolved. By the way, does anyone know the types of batteries going into these conversions? Are they DC or AC conversions?

mahonj:

I'm surprised to read that NG is a cleaner-safer-better vehicle energy source than electricity. NG may currently be a cheaper source but, in not too distant future, electrification of ground transport vehicles is by far the best solution.

Electric city buses (or trolleys), with enough on board super caps, would not need ugly overhead cables. Such vehicles could get very quick charges at regular 4th or 5th bus/trolley stops so equipped.

NB: Super-Caps can recharge/discharge very quickly and can last 1 000 000+ cycles.
A low cost mini on-board generator could be installed for emergencies only.

I lived near Mexico City for three years, and have visited several times since leaving 25 years ago. This effort is a drop in the proverbial bucket, but you gotta start somewhere. If you were to drive down a major thoroughfare, e.g., Insurgentes Blvd., watching the diesel buses spewing more fumes than a 100 MW power plant, you'd get an idea of the magnitude of the problem.

LA is cleaner than Mexico City for one simple reason -- the United States is rich enough to mandate polution controls without causing massive social unrest. People would rather breath bad air than go hungry. That's why there are 25 million people in Mexico City, and the same is true for hundreds of other cities in the developing world.

Fortunately, we can all benefit from the electrification of transportation systems, including mass transit and personal EVs, which is happening in the developed world. But they'll have to wait until it's cheap enough before they'll get any significant benefit. That may take another 5-10 years before the transition can begin, and 20 years after that to complete.

we have not got 20 years !

MUY BIEN PERO NO JALAN IGUAL YO DIGO

One EV is most likely cleaner than 1 CNG vehicle.
However, if you take a fixed amount of money and convert as many cars as you can afford to EVs or CNGvs, you will end up with far more CNGvs for your money.

Mexico is not particularly rich and cannot afford gold plated solutions - they would be better getting more cars to CNG, or getting the worst ones off the road than converting a small "show" fleet to EVs.

That is what I meant by "Greenwashing".

Re: Electric vehicles - Some GM history during the 1940 's GM Plotted to have the electric trolley taken off the streets and the tracks ripped up. They did succede in stopping the development of the electric motor. They however paid A few million dollars in fines (I don't know the exact wording or charges) as they were found quilty of bribery or fraud. They evidently recognised the advantage of the electric motor and acknowledge it by taken this action. (This is on record and well known fact) Next: At the time the first Japanese imports were coming into california there was A major interview with Mr. Smith CEO of GM. It made the financial section of the Sunday New York Times. After reading through the rantings of Mr. Smith on how the small import would never sell etc. In the very last paragraph (even an editor doesn't read that deep into an article) They quoted Mr Smith saying "Besides we are GM.We make , manufacture and sell over 50% of the autos in the world. They will buy what we manufacture." ATTITUDE !!!
The answer: I do not buy GM, Ford or Chrysler products.
A patriotic american who protest tariffs and subsidies alike.

George

Mahoni, this is NOT called Financial Car Congress. Although it may be true that you can get more NG car converted, it isn't the point of this blog. Although what you're saying would seam a better choice, electric cars are cheaper in the long run. Electric motors last longer than any kind of combustion engine and therefore in the long run a better utilization of monies.

Richard,

If we really want to reduce greenhouse gases we'll need to choose the most economical solutions. After all, economics is the study of how best to use scarce resources. So I don't think mahonj's comment is inappropriate for this blog. Also, economic analysis takes into account the longer life of an electric motor (lifecycle cost analysis).

The solution to any optimization problem depends on how you define the objective function. Maximum reduction of pollution and GHG per dollar spent seems like common sense IMO.

Sergio, los coches electricos pueden jalar igual de rapido; el problema ahora es la distancia.

There are other more important issues in México city.
Marcello just wants to become very popular because he wants to be the president of Mexico in 2012 !!

1 week ago I voted against GM by buying Japanese made Toyota Echo. My last car was Chevrolet. I would definitely go with american car if I didn't know all their dirty tricks how to keep public on gus guzzlers. There are many
people like me who feel that Gm and alike make a big misfavour to America by influencing young generation to go with their muscle cars. Car companies of such magnitude
should be more responsible in what they preach.
Alex.

I am glad to see Azure get the contract. Ever since they acquired Solectria, they have been concentrating on truck hybrids. It is good to see them back in the car game. 1000 units is a good sided contract.

and in the final Analysis,there is only one SURE Way to solve these Problems,QUIT Multiplying like Rats,you human Idiots!!

I'm trilled that they are going to convert 1,000 Nissan sedans into electric. With any project comes a learning curve and the price can come down in most cases. I'd gladly buy a similar Nissan Sentra and let them convert it on the same "assembly-line" that the Mexican Tsuru is going to be converted on. The cost should be reasonable for a quality product. I don't expect the major manufacturers to do anything positive to get me in an EV and I don't personally want a hybrid or PHEV. I don't want to lug around the gasoline part of the equation so I can have the electric part.

Just letting everyone know. THe motors being installed in these tsurus are similar or more powerfull that a comparable gas 120hp motor. So this means that the cars will have better performance than they did before. Supposedly they are using lead acid batteries.

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