Japan's Subaru Sees Indiana as Possible U.S. EV Production Site

First Up 09/15/23

Japan's Subaru Sees Indiana as Possible U.S. EV Production Site

The U.S. state of Indiana could well become the most-favored location for Subaru to establish an electric vehicle production site in the world's biggest economy, the Japanese automaker's chief executive said. According to Reuters, Subaru sees the years to 2028 as a key period for building up its EV sales so that it will eventually hit an annual sales target of 600,000 battery-powered vehicles by 2030 that will make up half of its global sales. It aims to sell 400,000 of those in the United States. The automaker is still considering where in the United States it will produce EVs, Subaru CEO Atsushi Osaki told reporters at a roundtable meeting in Tokyo on Wednesday. The company, a fifth owned by Toyota Motor, already owns a plant in Lafayette, Indiana, where it has been producing Legacy and Outback models. That site may well come out as top candidate location for the company's EV production, Osaki said, while cautioning it has not made any final decisions on the issue and was considering a wide range of things. "The time to make a decision is coming close," he added. Click here for the full story.

Workers Are on Strike at All 3 Detroit Auto Makers for the First Time in Their Union’s History

About 13,000 U.S. auto workers stopped making vehicles and went on strike Friday after their leaders couldn’t bridge a giant gap between union demands in contract talks and what Detroit’s three automakers are willing to pay. According to AP, members of the United Auto Workers union began picketing at a General Motors assembly plant in Wentzville, Missouri; a Ford factory in Wayne, Michigan, near Detroit; and a Stellantis Jeep plant in Toledo, Ohio.  It was the first time in the union’s 88-year history that it walked out on all three companies simultaneously as four-year contracts expired at 11:59 p.m. Thursday. The strikes will likely chart the future of the union and of America’s homegrown auto industry at a time when U.S. labor is flexing its might and the companies face a historic transition from building internal combustion automobiles to making electric vehicles. If they last a long time, dealers could run short of vehicles and prices could rise, impacting a U.S. economy already under strain from elevated inflation. The walkout could even be a factor in next year’s presidential election by testing Joe Biden’s proud claim to be the most union-friendly president in American history. Click here for the full story.

Toyota Reveals Next-Generation EV Batteries, Promising a 497-Mile Range

Toyota has unveiled additional details about the new, advanced batteries that will power its next-generation EVs after announcing a new battery electric vehicle facility that will begin producing new models in 2026. According to CBT News, the Japanese manufacturer will rely on four types of next-generation batteries: one solid-state battery and three new liquid electrolyte battery types. Additionally, the automaker estimates these batteries will power 1.7 million of the 3.5 million BEVs it expects to sell globally by 2030. The new generation of battery technologies will be essential to appeal to a more extensive customer base. Toyota stated that it’s working to improve all aspects of the liquid electrolytes, the current standard battery technology for BEVs, including improved energy density, cost-effectiveness, and charging rates. The three main battery types under development are referred to as: Performance (497-mile range); Popularization (20 percent more range than bZaX); High-Performance (621-mile range). On the other hand, Toyota asserts that it has made a breakthrough regarding the durability of solid-state batteries. The firm claims that its solid electrolyte allows for faster ion movement and improved tolerance of high voltages and temperatures in its solid-state lithium-ion batteries. Click here for the full story.

U.S. Electric Vehicle Sales Reach Breakthrough Pace

Electric cars are smashing all kinds of records in the US. Their share of new cars exceeded 7 percent for the first half of the year, speeding past a critical tipping point for mass adoption. In the last few months, all-time sales topped 3 million. But perhaps the most impressive of all is reaching a record-hot pace of almost 1 million new EVs per year. In the 12 months through June, Americans bought 977,445 cars that run solely on electricity, according to a Bloomberg Green analysis. It took 10 years for the U.S. to sell its first million fully electric vehicles, two years to reach the second million, and just over a year to reach the third. By the time the latest quarter’s figures are tallied up over the next month, the country should be well on its way to a fourth. Another way to look at the yearly pace of EV purchases is to use 12-month rolling sales, which reveal surprising progress. For this approach, each new calendar quarter shows the year of EV purchases leading up to that point. It smooths out seasonal fluctuations that can disguise longer-term trends. Click here for the full story.

Mercedes-Benz EQE SUV Interior Review: Beautiful, Quiet and Oh So Classy

It’s safe to say that the best part of the Mercedes-Benz EQE SUV to look at is its interior. Mercedes’ EQ exterior styling still isn’t growing on us in any format, but the inside of this EV is divine. According to Autoblog, the spec in this test car is difficult to beat, and in case you feel like copying it for your order, it’s Neva Grey/Sable Brown MB-Tex paired with Natural Grain Magnolia wood with the Star Pattern. Combine the light gray – almost white – with the gorgeous brown accents and copper trim everywhere, and the appearance is just pure class. The brown floor mats are the icing on the cake, allowing you to enjoy the airy two-tone color look while not worrying too much about getting the precious carpeting dirty. To add even more class to the whole look, this EQE SUV doesn’t have the optional Hyperscreen. Of course, the Hyperscreen is technically an upgrade since you get a larger central screen and an additional screen for the passenger. Click here to view photos. Click here to read the full review.


Around the Web

Tested: The 2024 Subaru Impreza Is a Clif Bar on Wheels [Car and Driver]

Nissan Caravan 50th Anniversary Edition Makes the Best Out of the 12-Year-Old Van [Carscoops]

VW Scout: Everything You Need to Know About the EV Upstart [Carbuzz]

Coming Mini Countryman JCW Shows Itself with New Design and New Logo [Autoblog]