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PEV potential pipeline: possible, promised or planned (13 October 2014 edition)

The last few weeks have seen a number of statements from executives at major automakers either pre-announcing, indicating possible development of or simply hinting at a number of new plug-in vehicle models coming over the next couple of years. That should be no surprise; the US-based Electric Drive Transportation Association notes that there are 20 plug-in and fuel cell vehicle models currently on the US market alone with 20 additional models expected here through 2016.

Given that sometimes there is not much more information available than one sentence uttered during an interview or a conference, it’s hard to pull together much that is substantive. However, we thought we’d try keeping a running tally of PEVs possible, promised or planned, with regular updates of the list; globally, to the best of our ability. Please add what we might have missed via the comments section; we’ll incorporate those into the next version of the PEV list. (Concept cars or officially announced models don’t count for this purpose.)

General Motors: Cadillac CT6 plug-in hybrid, Cadillac EV, Chevrolet Sonic EV. Mark Reuss, GM’s executive vice president of global product development, purchasing and supply chain, told attendees at the company’s recent Global Business Conference that the new Cadillac CT6 will have a plug-in electric option that offers fuel economy upwards of 70 mpg equivalent. (Detroit News)

Reuss also said that GM would add a new electric vehicle to the lineup. Automotive News cited sources saying the new EV would be based on the Sonic, have a range of about 200 miles, and launch in 2017.

Subsequently, in an interview with Reuters, Johan de Nysschen, Cadillac’s new head, said that a pure battery-electric car is part of the plan to expand Cadillac’s model range. De Nysschen also said a successor to the slow-selling ELR plug-in hybrid is being developed.

In the US, GM currently offers the Volt plug-in hybrid (the next-generation version of which is likely due late next year), the Cadillac ELR plug-in hybrid, and the Spark EV. Additionally, in China, Shanghai GM offers locally developed Sail EV.

In Europe, after the run-out of the current generation Ampera plug-in hybrid, Opel will introduce a successor product in the EV segment as part of its major model offensive from 2014-2018 (27 new vehicles). (Earlier post.)

Volkswagen’s battery outlook
Australia’s Motoring reported that, at the French round of the WRC in Strasbourg, Dr. Heinz Jakob-Neußer, Member of the Board of Management at Volkswagen responsible for the Development Division, projected that the group by 2015-16 will boost battery energy density from the current 25-28 Ah to 36-37 Ah. This should provide a range of around 300 km (186 miles).
Dr. Neußer also said that the company is working on the next step to around 60 Ah, which will be achieved with a “completely new” chemistry, and will come at the beginning of the next decade. This could provide range on the orders of 500-600 km (310-373 miles), he suggested.

Audi: plug-in hybrid R8 and battery-electric R8 e-tron. Audi board member for R&D Ulrich Hackenberg told AutoExpress that both a plug-in hybrid R8 and a pure electric R8 E-tron are in the cards. “‘We are able to make the R8 a plug-in hybrid,’ he said. ‘The Lamborghini Asterion (earlier post) shows this is possible—that car uses the platform of the R8. We will see an increase in the efficiency of high-performance cars—they have to meet CO2 regulations of the future in order to survive.’”

The successor to the R8 is due next year, Hackenberg said, and the R8 E-tron will have more than 400 km (250 miles) range. Currently, Audi offers the A3 Sportback e-tron plug-in hybrid. (Earlier post.)

Volkswagen: plug-in hybrid Phaeton. Automotive News reported that when it comes back to the US, the second generation of Volkswagen’s Phaeton luxury sedan will offer a plug-in hybrid version.

Volkswagen currently offers the e-up! and e-Golf battery electric vehicles, and the Golf GTE plug-in hybrid, and has shown the Passat GTE plug-in hybrid at the Paris Motor Show. (Earlier post.)

Porsche: possible 911 hybrid. Porsche currently has three production plug-in hybrid models: the Cayenne S E-Hybrid, the Panamera S E-Hybrid and the 918 Spyder. (Earlier post.) To this, the brand may add a hybrid next-generation Porsche 911, according to Porsche CEO Matthias Muller. (Car Advice). Muller suggested that hybrid technology could eventually make its way into all Porsche model lines.

(Audi, Porsche and Volkswagen are all members of the Volkswagen Group.)

Chrysler: plug-in hybrid town and country minivan to arrive in 2015; fulls-size crossover. Chrysler Group will launch a plug-in hybrid version of the next-generation Chrysler Town & Country minivan late next year, according to CEO Sergio Marchionne. (Automotive News). This will be about a year earlier than the automaker indicated in its investor presentation in May.

Other hybrids will follow, including a Chrysler-badged full-size crossover.

Daimler: 10 new hybrids by 2017 (not specifying plug-in). At the Paris Motor Show, Daimler Chief Executive Dieter Zetsche said the company will introduce 10 new hybrid vehicles by 2017, paving the way for fully electric driving. (Reuters)

Daimler’s Mercedes-Benz currently offers the S 500 Plug-in Hybrid, the B-Class Electric Drive, and the limited production SLS AMG Coupé Electric Drive, while the smart division offers the smart fortwo electric drive. In China, Daimler has partnered with BYD on the Denza EV. (Earlier post.)

Mitsubishi: ASX and Pajero plug-in hybrids to European lineup; Evo-inspired hybrid SUV. Mitsubishi CEO Osamu Masuko told Automotive News Europe that the company will add plug-in versions of the ASX and Pajero, joining the successful Outlander plug-in hybrid. Masuko said the ASX plug-in version will go on sale in Europe and other global markets in 2017. The Pajero replacement and its plug-in version are likely to arrive in 2018.

At the Paris Motor Show, Mitsubishi product boss Kanenori Okamoto said that the Evo will be replaced by an Evo-inspired hybrid SUV. The SUV will include technology inspired by Mitsubishi’s electric Pikes Peak hillclimb racer: MiEV Evolution.


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I would like to add Teslamotors to this list: Their Model X and Model III have been promised for delivery respectively 2015 and 2017-18. They have not yet been officially announced and they are not concepts.


Kia Optima and Hyundai Sonata PHEVs in 2015:

'According to a report from The Korean Car Blog, R&D vice chairman at Hyundai Motor Group, Yang Woong-Chul, stated that plug-in hybrid versions of the Sonata and Kia K5 (that's an Optima) will be launched next year onto the global market.

“We will roll out a plug-in hybrid model of Sonata and K5 next year. Since we will use locally made engines, inverters and batteries, we expect them to have strong price competitiveness," Yang said.

The Sonata is brand new, a 2015 model year in America. However, the hybrid model that's currently on sale is a older 2014 model year and will be retired soon. Kia, on the other hand, needs to launch an all-new Optima soon, a car they've been testing on all continents.

At the Paris Motor Show, a concept called Optima T-Hybrid is currently on display. It combines their 1.7-liter diesel engine with 15-hp electric motor, a 48-volt lead-carbon battery, and an electric supercharger. That's right, it's one of those e-turbos that Audi wants to use as well.

As impressive as that sounds, it's not a PHEV. To make a true plug-in, the Koreans will probably have to use a much more powerful electric motor that can push the car on its own and a petrol engine (probably a 2.0 Kappa), since diesels are still uncommon in America and China, their two biggest markets.

Why did we say Korea will compete with Toyota and Honda?

Because the Sonata and Optima PHEVs will go up against the Honda Accord PHEV and to a lesser extent the Prius PHEV. Both Japanese brands are experts at making green cars, having started developing hybrids in the 90s.

In order to compete, locally made parts from Korea will be used in order to keep costs down to a minimum.'

Mitsubishi had better get the Outlander PHEV to the States fast, of the market will be gone!

Fisker will re-release the Karma


Chevrolet Sonic EV
Let's see Musk laugh this one off.
GM can out produce Tesla any day at a lower cost.


Its not a new model, but its a different ball game:

'If you look at when we started with the e-mobility of the Golf, and you look now to the Passat, we have done the first step," said Dr Neusser. "We have more energy density in the batteries [than before], and in 2015-16 will come the next step which means we come from 25-28 ampere hours (Ah) energy density to 36-37Ah. Now we are actually working on the next step to around 60Ah... with research will come a completely new electro-chemical chemistry inside the batteries, and this will come at the beginning of the next decade. We have to look to the e-Golf, which had an operating range of around 190km. I expect the next generation in 2015-17 will increase to around 300km and the following step will be around 500-600km."'

That is on the NEDC of course, but by the time the Model III is supposed to come out, and Tesla is always late and more expensive than they reckon, there should be Golf's and Passats around with 150-160 mile range on the EPA.

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There will be longer range BEVs from others than Tesla by 2017 but I am afraid they will all be based on an adapted version of a gasser meaning the trunk space will be reduced and the handling will not be as supreme as it is in Tesla's BEVs that all use a flat battery embedded in the entire floor of the car where it optimally should be.

Another thing that now makes Tesla's BEVs more competitive than the pack is that Tesla is now making auto-pilot standard in all of their cars. I quote "The launch of Dual Motor Model S coincides with the introduction of a standard hardware package that will enable autopilot functionality. Every single Model S now rolling out of the factory includes a forward radar, 12 long range ultrasonic sensors positioned to sense 16 feet around the car in every direction at all speeds, a forward looking camera, and a high precision, digitally controlled electric assist braking system."

Tesla believe they can evolve this standard autopilot system into a fully autonomous autopilot system in about 5 years time. It will be quite revolutionary if Tesla can make a fully autonomous car by, say, 2020. You would never need a taxi any more just use your phone to order your car to be at the location you need to travel from. Parking is not a problem either. The car can deliver you at the gate of your destination and drive away to find a free parking spot somewhere before it returns and pick you up as scheduled on your phone. If anyone can make this standard it would be Tesla.

Also by 2017 Tesla will have superchargers everywhere in the world. What will GM, VW and Nissan have to support their long-range BEVs?

I could also imagine that Tesla's future autopilot system will include an auto connector for Tesla's supercharger network so that the car can drop you off at your destination and then drive to the nearest supercharger to ensure that it has a fully charged battery when it picks you up the next time.

As for Tesla and price competitiveness the fact is that Tesla is already the world's largest buyer of kWhs. They are bigger than Nissan and they are the only one with a >public strategy< to drive the battery cost further down. As I see it Tesla already has the lowest battery cost and they will continue to be lower at least until others get on with 50GWh factories. Surely if Tesla did a PHEV (as they will not) they would have higher costs than say Porsche who has patent and experience in that area that Tesla does not have. However, with long-range pure BEVs I do not see who can compete with Tesla at least not until after 2020.

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One more thought. When Tesla succeed in making a fully autonomous autopilot for their cars I predict that the biggest customer for Tesla's cars will quickly become, well, Teslamoters. Tesla will start a taxi service with these cars that run at lower costs than other taxi services because they use electricity and does not have to pay a human driver and that are as convenient to use as Uber because they can be hired by an app similar to Uber's app. Off cause these Tesla cars will all have auto connect for Tesla's supercharger network. The wealthy will likely tend to buy their own autonomous Tesla and the not so wealthy will tend to use Tesla's global autonomous taxi service.


The E-Golf like every other new model coming out of the VW group is built on platforms which had multiple drive trains including BEV in the design brief from inception.

In no way are they modified gasoline cars.

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Sorry for this multi posting. Another bit of revealing info from Tesla's blog on the new autopilot and D drives. Tesla list other things that have been added or improved in the new Model S including "Electrically opening, self-closing charge port door on Dual Motor Model S (delivered with Dual Motor Model S)." Now, why would Tesla add this presumably unnecessary feature unless it was because Tesla plans to soon offer a home charger with a robotic arm that can auto connect to Tesla's charging port. All of Tesla's supercharger stations could also get a robotic arm for automatic plugging. The new Tesla's can already use their autopilot to park themselves at home or at a supercharger parking lot so this is a no-brainer in my opinion.

Inductive charging is an inferior alternative to plugged charging because it adds significant weight to the car, it is inefficient and is currently nowhere near the 120k Watt that Tesla's superchargers can handle.

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Dave if it wasn't VW would have made it like a Tesla. Not like they do now. VWs design is fine for gassers and PHEVs but it sucks for BEVs.



Whatever you may chose to think Tesla is not the only game in town, and it is wilfully inaccurate to describe the E-Golf as being a modified petrol car when electric was in the design brief for a start.

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I sincerely hope that Tesla is not the only game in town but currently I have only seen Nissan being serious about BEVs and unfortunately they got off to a very poor start selling much less than they planned for. IMO because they read the market wrongly starting with a non-performance short-range BEV that is not in demand. Everybody else seems to be halfhearted with regard to BEVs although they are serious about PHEVs at long-last.

Roger Pham

Tesla is practically the only game in town who is truly serious about making and selling truly desirable PEV's. The rest are producing PEV's half heartedly just for ZEV credits without really wanting to sell them. The car dealers are the worst in selling PEV's, so Tesla smartly sell their car direct to customers and bypassing the middlemen, more value to customers

by 2017 Tesla will have superchargers everywhere in the world. What will GM, VW and Nissan have to support their long-range BEVs?

Tesla opened the patents on their charging systems and protocols.  GM, VW and Nissan have no barriers to building vehicles that can also use the Supercharger network.


It seems possible that some future batteries will charge to 70% in only 2 minutes.

Assuming that many future extended range BEVs will have 120+ kWh battery pack, a 20% to 70% recharge (or about 60 kWh in 2 minutes) will require an impressive charger with 1,800+ KW capability?

It would be more reasonable to increase charging time to 6 minutes with 600 KW charging unit?

Roger Pham

Hold your horses, Harvey, and look at the cost of electric vs ICE power train.
Let's consider the Nissan Leaf at $29000 vs. the Nissan Versa at $14000, identical bodies and power (107 and 109 hp) except for power train.

The ICE power train at $45/hp x 109 = $5000, leaving $9000 for the cost of the rest of the car.
The Leaf's power train, then, costs $20000. The battery pack costs $6000, thus, leaving $14000 for the motor and inverter.

A PHEV based on the Leaf body with half ICE and half electric will cost $7000 + $2500 = $9500 for power train. The 100-mi range of the Leaf can be reduced to 25, thus 6 kWh for $1500.
Thus, $9000+$9500+$1500=$20000. A 25-mi range PHEV based on the Leaf can be priced at $20000!
If charged twice daily, it can cover 50 miles, thus cut gasoline usage by 90%! Yet, very affordable.

So, I'd say, forget about fast charging and focus on making PHEV's instead.

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@EP for other carmakers to use Tesla's charging network they will have to pay dearly to Tesla. To be profitable with BEVs GM, Nissan etc need to build their own supercharger network and my point is they have not even started and surely will not be ready with a global network by 2017.

The Tesla thing about "free to use patents" was only for those who has other patents to free that Tesla find equally valuable as in "You get usage right to our technology if we get the same from you." BMW is IMO the only carmaker that can make such a patent trade with Tesla. BMW is ahead of Tesla in terms of using low cost carbon fiber materials for car manufacturing. Tesla could benefit from using that in their coming cars.



I agree with you that HEVs (we have 3) and PHEVs (none yet due to lack of charging facilities) are excellent INTERIM solutions until much lower cost, more efficient batteries become available.

I still maintain that by 2020 or so, extended range BEVs (and a few PHEVs for a rather short time) will become much more competitive and will seriously start to replace ICEVs and HEVs.

By that time, we will have to replace our (3) HEVs with extended range lower cost BEVs, because the current usera (other 139 internal parking places) may not (yet) be convinced to pay for the installation of charging facilities at about $5K each.


By 2020 or so, Very High Power, automated public or private charging facilities will become common place and start replacing current gasoline/diesel stations.

Interesting to see where H2 stations will fit?


Harvey, Clipper Creek chargers now start at less than USD400.  You should be able to get a quote on conduit and wiring installation to empty boxes on a set of parking slots.  Add $400 for the EVSE and $100 for a licensed electrician to wire it in (any idiot can do the mechanical attachment to the wall), and I'm certain that you will come in a long way below $5000 a unit.

If you get a quote, make sure it includes CAT5a wire pulled to each box and brought back to another box near the main panel.  Current $400 chargers aren't quite smart enough to be internet-connected for load management and self-diagnostics, but that's going to be here before your condo board can get itself together to put out a request for quotes.

Roger Pham

))))"Interesting to see where H2 stations will fit?"

Interesting question you're asking, Harvey. H2 will cost less per mile, perhaps half as much in comparison to petrol in a FCEV. To keep down the price of FCEV's, perhaps they can be made into HFCEV, meaning half electric and half ICE:

Thus, out of 100 kW total power, 50kW will be electric and 50kW will be ICE. The ICE will be a 2-cylinder direct-injection engine running on H2. No emission control needed since there will be no CO nor HC when running on H2, thus keeping it very cheap! Thus the price of HFCEV will be half of that of a fully-electric FCEV.



How about a PHEV with a smaller (15 to 20 KW) lower cost FC instead of an ICE range extender.

An under floor (a la Tesla) smaller (25 KWh) battery pack for the first 50 to 60 Km or so would do. Such a vehicle could use electricity about 80% to 90% of the time with rare H2 fill ups, on long trips.

Roger Pham

Peak efficiency of FC starts to decline at 25% of max output. So, if it takes 13 kW output to cruise ar 65mph, then you will need 50-kW stack minimal.

Notice that the ICE used here is not as a range extender, but as a LOW-COST POWER BOOSTER. The H2 is the sole energy source, and the FC is for base-load power due to its 60% efficiency at low loads, while the engine can manage only 40%-45% peak efficiency on H2 at higher loads.
This a cost breakdown of a near-future HCCEV:
Electric power train $130/hp x 67hp= $8700
ICE power train $30/hp x 67 = $2000
FC stack at $30/kW, plus H2 tank $3000.
The rest of the car $10000
SUM TOTAL= $23,700 USD.

This listed price is comparable to that of an HEV or ICEV, yet fuel cost will be only 5 cents per mile, vs BEV energy cost of 4 cents per mile, or ICEV fuel cost of 12-15 cents per mile. The future of HFCEV is quite clear, with the help of an H2-combustion engine on board.

RP>The Leaf's power train, then, costs $20000. The battery pack costs $6000, thus, leaving $14000 for the motor and inverter.

Roger, Nissan pays nothing even remotely close to $20k for an electric motor and inverter.

Good grief.

Roger Pham

The $20000 includes battery, motor controller, motor, gear reduction, battery monitoring electronics and cooling system, onboard charger, etc.
Since the battery pack is known to cost $6000, the power train should cost around $14000.
Nissan hardly make any profit on the Leaf, but use it for ZEV credit. Nissan's profit on the Versa is probably higher than that of the Leaf.

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