What Biden's EV Charger Funding Approval Means Going Forward

First Up 09/19/22

What Biden's EV Charger Funding Approval Means Going Forward

While the federal government hurries to approve state plans to support an electric vehicle charging network across the country, President Joe Biden is busy visualizing the end goal. "The great American road trip is going to be fully electrified," Biden said in a speech at the Detroit auto show, his first visit to the event since he was vice president in the Obama administration. "Whether you're driving coast to coast along the I-10 or on I-75 here in Michigan, charging stations will be up and as easy to find as gas stations are now." Automotive News reports the president last year set an ambitious target for battery-electric, plug-in hybrid and fuel cells to make up 50 percent of all new vehicles sold in the U.S. by 2030. And, to speed up EV adoption, his administration is working with states to build 500,000 EV charging stations with funding from the $1 trillion infrastructure law. Click here for the full story.

Lexus on Track in Transition to Electric Vehicles

Dejuan Ross is a veteran Toyota Motor North America executive who became head of the Lexus brand at the end of June in a management shuffle brought about by the retirement of longtime Toyota sales head Bob Carter. Ross, 50, a graduate of Howard University, has been with Toyota in a variety of sales and marketing positions since he joined the company in 1995. Before his appointment to head up Lexus, he was vice president of marketing for Toyota Financial Services. Ross said he sees Lexus remaining steady on its planned transition to an all-electric vehicle lineup by the next decade, beginning early next year with the RZ 450e compact electric crossover. Ross spoke to Automotive News Staff Reporter Larry P. Vellequette and News Editor Omari Gardner on the sidelines of the Detroit auto show. Click here to read the full interview with Dejuan Ross, Group Vice President and General Manager, Lexus Divisions and Automotive News.

Volkswagen Launches New Mobility Unit with Emphasis on AV and EV Tech

Volkswagen is taking steps to increase its market position as an electric vehicle maker by creating a new division dubbed “New Mobility.” The division will work specifically on the development of electric and autonomous vehicles. The department will take over responsibility for current ID-badged vehicles and future electric vehicles, which will be based on the VW Group’s new SSP scalable electric car architecture. The division will also assume responsibility for the company’s Trinity project, which is tasked with creating a new generation of electric vehicles. The Trinity Project’s flagship sedan will be available in 2026 and feature Level 4 autonomy, allowing hands-free driving in most scenarios. Level 4 falls short of full-driverless capabilities offered by Level 5 vehicles. CBT News reports the New Mobility division will be headed by Thomas Ulbrich, a 30-year Volkswagen veteran and current head of development. Ulbrich will also earn a seat on the supervisory board of Cariad, Volkswagen’s struggling software unit. Cariad will now be led by Kai Gruenitz, who previously held a similar role at the company’s commercial vehicle division. Click here for the full story.

BMW Doesn’t Think you Need More Than 621 Miles of Range From an EV

The next generation of batteries from BMW will dramatically increase the range of its EVs but the automaker has no plans of selling cars that can travel more than 621 miles on a single charge. BMW will open a new chapter in its history in 2025 with the arrival of its Neue Klasse platform set to underpin a plethora of new models, including EVs. This platform will sport cylindrical-shaped cells as opposed to the flat, prismatic cells that the car manufacturer currently uses, resulting in vehicles with significantly more range. “Gen6 batteries will give us 30 percent or more range than our current Gen5, but we won’t go over 620 miles of range, even though we can,” BMW head of Efficient Dynamics Thomas Albrecht said, reports Carscoops. “We don’t think that such a long range is necessary.” BMW’s new Gen6 cylindrical cells will be sourced from China’s CATL and EVE. These new cells won’t only allow BMW to dramatically increase the usable range of its EVs but could result in battery packs that weigh 10-20 percent less than they currently do. Click here for the full story.

Experian Report Underscores Dealers' Need for Credit Union Partnerships

As the chip shortage continues to wreak havoc on new-car inventories, more buyers turn to used cars, according to Experian's State of the Automotive Finance Market Report: Q2 2022. The report shows almost 62 percent of all vehicle financing was for used vehicles, up from just over 58 percent in Q2 2021. That surge has led to a jump in credit unions’ market share. The increase, which Experian calls "significant," saw numbers reach about 26 percent in Q1 2022, up from about 18 percent in Q1 2021, coming in second only to banks (just under 28 percent) and surpassing captive lenders (more than 23 percent). "A lot of the increase for credit unions is because, from what I'm seeing so far, credit unions haven't raised their rates," Melinda Zabritski, Experian's senior director of automotive financial solutions, tells Wards. "But I think there's also a balance on the dealer side between maintaining their business and revenue opportunities (while) also making sure that the consumer is well served with loan amounts and competitive interest rates.” Experts at TransUnion recommend dealers' chief financial officers consider partnering with credit unions to offer their customers the lowest possible financing. Click here for the full story.

Around the Web

Uber Plans for All Rides to Take Place in Electric Vehicles by 2030 [WTVR - CBS 6 Richmond]

4 Federal Departments: We're Joining Forces to 'Decarbonize' the American Road [Car and Driver]

Say Arrivederci to the V-10 For the Next Lamborghini Huracán [Motortrend]

Road Tripping with the 2023 Bentley Bentayga Ewb SUV [Maxim]