Piaggio Signs Letter Of Intent With KTM, Honda And Yamaha To Create A Swappable Batteries Consortium


The aim of the Consortium will be to define the standardized technical specifications of the swappable battery system for vehicles belonging to the L-category like – mopeds, motorcycles, tricycles and quadricycles.



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The Swappable Batteries Consortium will start its activities in May 2021

Piaggio Group has announced signing a letter of intent with other two-wheeler manufactures – KTM AG, Honda Motor Co., and Yamaha Motor Co., to setup up a Swappable Batteries Consortium for Motorcycles and Light Electric Vehicles. The founding members of the Consortium believe that the availability of a standardised swappable battery system would both promote the widespread use of light electric vehicles and contribute to a more sustainable life-cycle management of batteries used in the transport sector. Thus, the aim here is to define the standardised technical specifications of the swappable battery system for vehicles belonging to the L-category i.e. mopeds, motorcycles, tricycles and quadricycles.

Commenting on the collaboration, Michele Colaninno, Piaggio Group Chief of strategy and product said, “With the signing of this letter of intent the signatories show their proactiveness vis-a-vis the major concerns of their customers and the political priorities as regards the electrification of vehicles. An international standard for the swappable batteries system will make this technology efficient and at the disposal of the consumers. Finally, a strengthened cooperation among manufacturers and institutions will allow the industry to better respond to the main challenges of the future of mobility.”

Also Read: Piaggio Plans to Setup 100 EV Experience Centres In India By The End Of 2021

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The standardised technical specifications of the swappable battery system for vehicles belonging to the L-category

Piaggio also says that in addition to adopting the swappable battery system model, the companies will also work on extending the range, shortening the charging time and lowering vehicle and infrastructure costs. Given the fact that these are some of the main concerns customers have when it comes to electric mobility. To that effect, the manufacturers will closely work with interested stakeholders and national, European and international standardisation bodies, to help create international technical standards.

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Also Read: Piaggio Unlikely To Launch An Electric Two-Wheeler In India Any Time Soon

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The Consortium will start its activities in May 2021, and the four founding brands are encouraging all interested stakeholders to join the cooperation to enrich the Consortium’s expertise. Piaggio says this will be in the context of the Paris Climate Agreement and the transition to electromobility.

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Volkswagen Images ID.3 e-Convertible In Sketches


If greenlit, the Volkswagen ID.3 Convertible will be the brand’s first all-electric open-top offering and will share its underpinnings and equipment with the ID.3 hard-top currently on sale in Europe.



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The Volkswagen ID.3 Convertible is still under contemplation and is yet to get the go-ahead

The Volkswagen ID.3 is the brand’s new electric vehicle for the city and it just might get a convertible version in the future. The idea was hinted at by Herbert Diess – CEO, VW Group, with sketches of the ID.3 Convertible posted on social media. The company was assessing the response to the sketch online, calling it an ‘e-convertible’. If the project is greenlit, the ID.3 Convertible will become the brand’s first all-electric open-top offering.

The Volkswagen ID.3 is based on the brand’s electrified MEB platform that will underpin a number of cars under the VW umbrella across several body styles. It’s safe to say that the convertible version would be an extension of the car on sale today and is likely to arrive with the facelifted ID.3 that is scheduled n 2023. It’s unclear at the moment if the idea is just on paper of Volkswagen has explored the engineering of the project.

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The Volkswagen ID.3 Convertible could see a lower range compared to the hard-top version due to the higher kerb weight

That said, the Volkswagen ID.3 Convertible certainly looks promising. The model loses its rear doors, while the rear-end has been redesigned to give it a more prominent look over the existing version of the ID.3. Barring the missing roof, the ID.3 Convertible very much looks identical to the model on sale and looks nice. With respect to the powertrain, the model is likely to use the same 150 kW electric motor that produces about 201 bhp and 310 Nm of peak torque. The hard-top version promises a range of 420 km (WLTP) on a single charge.

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The Volkswagen ID.3 is currently on sale in Europe

When it comes to feasibility, it needs to be seen what kind of limitations will the automaker face. Usually, convertibles are heavier than hard-top vehicles and that could impact the range of the ID.3 Convertible. Interestingly, there aren’t many electric convertibles to compare the ID.3 with, to understand how the segment has performed in the past. Globally, the popularity of convertibles has seen a dip in recent times. Barring the T-Roc Cabriolet, there aren’t any other open-top models in the brand’s line-up.

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Renault Announces Discounts Of Up To Rs. 75,000 On Select BS6 Cars In March



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Skoda Kushaq interior teased ahead of launch


NEW DELHI: Skoda Auto on Thursday teased the first glimpse of the interiors of the upcoming compact SUV Kushaq.
Kushaq is the first model in the VW Group’s INDIA 2.0 and the premiere of the SUV will take place on 18 March 2021.
The pictures reveal a floating-type infotainment system, which is expected to boast Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. A panel running across the dashboard divides it into two halves before joining with the hexagonal AC vents. The AC and other key controls are, however, likely to have tactile inputs instead of knobs and buttons. The dual-pod steering wheel is an interesting touch.

Skoda Kushaq aims to throw a challenge at the popular C-SUV like Hyundai Creta and Kia Seltos on launch and is likely to be priced Rs 11.5 lakh (ex-showroom) onwards.

Kushaq will be available in 1.0-litre turbo-petrol and 1.5-litre turbo-petrol engine options with both manual and automatic gearbox options.

Kushaq will offer safety equipment like ABS with EBD, hill-hold control, isofix seats at the rear, automatic headlamps, rain-sensing wipers, 6 airbags and tyre-pressure monitoring system among others.



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All-New Hyundai Bayon Crossover SUV Makes Global Debut




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The all-new Bayon is Hyundai’s entry-level model in the SUV line-up for Europe

Hyundai has finally revealed the all-new Bayon Crossover SUV, which is specifically designed for the European markets. The SUV’s name is derived from the city of ‘Bayonne’, the capital of the French Basque country, which is one of the most beautiful destinations in the south-west of France. It is the brand’s latest entry-level SUV, which will be positioned below Kona, Tucson, Santa Fe, and the Nexo in the global line-up. The all-new Bayon packs a nicely designed exterior, plush interior, safety package, connectivity features and Hyundai’s 48-volt mild-hybrid technology.

Also Read: Hyundai Nexo Fuel Cell Electric SUV Gets 5-Star Rating From Green NCAP​

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Hyundai Bayon is available in a total of nine exterior colours, including a new Mangrove Green shade

The exterior design of the Bayon is accentuated by a wide single-piece grille giving a solid stance to the front profile. The triangular LED headlamps with sleek-looking LED DRLs along with a silver bash plate complete the overall stylish look of the SUV. The SUV rides on either 15-inch steel rims or 16 or 17-inch alloy wheels while the shoulder offers a wedge-shaped appearance. At the rear, it gets arrow-shaped LED taillamps with a red stripe joining the light clusters that further emphasises the car’s width. The dual-tone bumper with reflectors and the silver faux plate ensures the rugged look of the Bayon remains intact.

Dimensionally, the Crossover SUV is 4,180 mm long, 1,775 mm wide, and 1,490 mm tall. The wheelbase stands at 2,580 mm along with a ground clearance of 183 mm. Hyundai also claims that passengers will experience a comfortable ride thanks to the legroom of 1,072 mm for front passengers and 882 mm for rear passengers. The all-new Bayon will be available in a total of nine exterior colour options, including the new shade, Mangrove Green. Moreover, it will be offered with an optional two-tone roof in Phantom Black with several exterior colours.

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The all-new Bayon gets all-black interiors along with a 10.25-inch or 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system offering Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity

The cabin of the Hyundai Bayon is neatly designed, well-lit and feature-loaded with all-black interiors and optional two other colour combinations. It gets a 10.25-inch digital cluster, 10.25-inch AVN or 8-inch display audio with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto wireless compatibility, LED ambient lighting, horizontal AC vents, four-spoke steering wheel, Bose stereo system, wireless charging and much more.

The all-new Hyundai Bayon is a connected car as it gets the brand’s BlueLink technology. It brings features likes connected routing, live parking services, calendar integration, remote services, online voice recognition, Find My Car, vehicle alarm notification and more. As for safety, it comes equipped with autonomous driving features such as lane following assist, forward collision-avoidance assist, driver attention warning, and blind-spot collision warning and more.

Mechanically, the Hyundai Bayon uses a 1.0-litre T-GDi engine with 48-volt mild-hybrid technology. The unit is capable of producing 100 bhp or 120 bhp output while mated to a seven-speed DCT and a six-speed iMT unit. There’s also a 1.2-litre naturally-aspirated engine on offer, which makes 84 bhp of maximum power. It gets a five-speed manual gearbox.

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The Hyundai Bayon measures 4,180 mm in length, 1,775 mm in width, and 1,490 mm in height

Also Read: Hyundai IONIQ 5 Revealed; Gets An All-Electric Range Of Upto 480 km​

Andreas-Christoph Hofmann, Vice President of Marketing & Product at Hyundai Motor Europe said, “As the SUV body type continues growing in popularity throughout the world, Hyundai saw a demand for a model capable of navigating European cities while at the same time providing enough space to meet customers’ needs. Class-leading connectivity and safety features, a sharp and distinctive design, and the integration of Hyundai’s signature 48-volt mild-hybrid technology make Bayon stand out in its segment.”

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Luc Donckerwolke, Chief Creative Officer at Hyundai Motor Group said, “With its sharp look and integration of Hyundai’s SUV key design elements, Bayon solidifies Hyundai’s SUV design direction. ‘Bayon’s unique and confident look, embodied in its strong lines and arrow-shaped lights, is expected to establish it as the most unique, outstanding entry in the thriving European B-segment SUV segment.”

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Porsche and Volkswagen considering entry to more sustainable F1


LONDON: Porsche and the Volkswagen Group would consider entering Formula One if the next engine regulations due to be introduced in 2025 promote sustainable fuels, the BBC reported on Wednesday.
The broadcaster quoted Porsche Motorsport vice-president Fritz Enzinger as saying it would be “of great interest if aspects of sustainability — for instance, the implementation of e-fuels” played a role.
“Should these aspects be confirmed, we will evaluate them in detail within the VW Group and discuss further steps,” he said.
“Porsche and Volkswagen AG are observing the constantly changing regulations in all relevant racing series around the world.
“This is also the case with regard to the emerging new engine and drivetrain regulation for Formula One from 2025.”
Formula One’s governing body, the FIA, last year delivered the first barrels of 100% sustainable fuel made from bio-waste to engine manufacturers for testing and validation.
It said the aim was a mandatory requirement of 100% sustainable fuels in F1, which has the target of being a net zero carbon sport by 2030.

“Our top sustainability priority now is building a roadmap for the hybrid engine that reduces emissions and has a real world benefit for road cars,” managing director for motorsport Ross Brawn said in December.
“We believe we have the opportunity to do that with a next generation engine that combines hybrid technology with sustainable fuels.”
Formula One’s new chief executive Stefano Domenicali, a former head of Volkswagen-owned Lamborghini, said in January that the sport was in discussions with manufacturers not currently involved.
“For the moment, they prefer to stay still quiet, but the good news is that there are other…companies, very important companies, that are really keen to understand what is the value that they can bring home using the F1 platform,” he said.



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Hyundai Motor Revises Down Fourth-Quarter Operating Profit After Costly Kona EV Recall


Hyundai said that the quarter’s profit came in at 1.3 trillion won ($1.2 billion), down from the 1.6 trillion won it had initially reported in late January.



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The recall mostly concerns the Kona EV, Hyundai’s biggest-selling electric car

South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Co revised down its fourth-quarter operating profit by nearly a fifth after a costly $900 million recall to replace battery systems in some 82,000 electric vehicles globally.

It said on Thursday that the quarter’s profit came in at 1.3 trillion won ($1.2 billion), down from the 1.6 trillion won it had initially reported in late January.

The recall mostly concerns the Kona EV, Hyundai’s biggest-selling electric car which was first recalled late last year for a software upgrade after a spate of fires.

Hyundai’s Kona EV uses batteries manufactured by LG Chem Ltd’s wholly owned battery division LG Energy Solution.

(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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Isuzu Motors To Hike Prices Across D-Max Range By Rs. 1 Lakh From April


The price hike will be effective from April 1, 2021, by up to Rs. 1 lakh from the current ex-showroom price on the Isuzu D-Max Regular Cab and the D-Max S-Cab.



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Isuzu’s commercial vehicle range comprises the D-Max Regular cab and the S-Cab

Japanese automaker Isuzu Motors India has announced that it will be increasing the prices of its D-Max Regular Cab and the D-Max S-Cab in India. The increase will be ₹ 1 lakh on the current ex-showroom price and will be effective from April 1, 2021. At present, the Isuzu D-Max Regular Cab is priced from ₹ 8.75 lakh onwards, while the D-Max S-Cab is priced from ₹ 10.74 lakh (all prices, ex-showroom Delhi) onwards. That’s a steep hike for the commercial vehicles, on the brand’s two models that are currently on sale in the company’s line-up.

Also Read: Isuzu Motors Announces Price Hike On Its Commercial Vehicle Range From January

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The Isuzu D-Max pick-ups previously received a price hike of ₹ 10,000 in January this year

In a statement, Isuzu Motors India said that the increase in price is due to the rising cost of production, transportation and logistics. It needs to be noted that this is the second price hike from the automaker on the BS6 models. The company had previously hiked prices in January by about ₹ 10,000. At the time, the company had cited an increase in input and vehicle cost as the primary reason for the price hike.

Also Read: Isuzu D-Max, D-Max S-Cab BS6 Pick-Up Trucks Launched

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Isuzu’s BS6 range was introduced in October last year but has been limited to commercial vehicles The company is yet to introduce the BS6 versions of the MU-X SUV and the V-Cross lifestyle pick-up truck in the country. Interestingly, both the MU-X and the D-Max V-Cross have moved to the next-generation version in the South East Asian markets. However, the company is yet to confirm when the all-new models will come to India. More recently, the BS6 compliant version of the MU-X was spotted testing in India, hinting that the current model will soldier on for some more time.

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Govt starts Aadhaar-based driving license services, does away with RTO visits


NEW DELHI: According to a new notification by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH), candidates will not be needed to give the RTO office a visit for a few services like attaining a learner’s license, driving license renewal, vehicle registration and many more.
MoRTH has now rolled out an Aadhar-based authentication for a total of 18 services that will not require you to pay a visit to your regional RTO. The roll-out comes almost 3 weeks after the MoRTH issued a draft order to integrate the Aadhar authentication with a few services.
The earlier draft order stated that the people could link their driving license and the RC with their Aadhar number. The move comes in a bid to eliminate the heavy crowds at RTOs keeping the current situation in mind.
The services that can be availed by people online through their Aadhar authentication include availing a learner’s license, renewal of driving license, change of address in driving license, duplicate driving license, availing an international driving permit, applying for temporary registration, applying for registration, obtaining RC or surrendering the driving license to obtain a new class.
“In order to provide convenient and hassle-free services to the citizen, the Ministry shall make all the required arrangements for wide publicity through media and individual notices to make citizens aware of the requirements of Aadhaar for availing contactless services through implementing agencies,” stated MoRTH in the notification.



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Euler Motors Raises Rs. 30 Crore, To Utilise For New Production Facility, Business Expansion


Euler Motors has raised Rs. 30 crore in the fresh round of funding that will be used for a new facility and R&D activities, while the start-up is gearing up to introduce an all-new electric cargo three-wheeler later in the year.



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Saurav Kumar – Founder and CEO, Euler Motors with the electric cargo three-wheeler

Delhi-based electric commercial vehicle start-up, Euler Motors has announced that the company has raised ₹ 30 crore in a fresh round of funding. The Series A round was led by existing investors – Inventus India and Jetty Ventures, along with Sujeet Kumar, co-founder Udaan. In addition, the firm raised capital from new investors Srinivas Anumolu and K Ganesh from Growth Story. The fresh funding will be used for the company’s business expansion that includes setting up a new production facility, R&D activities and expansion of charging and service infrastructure. More details on the facility are yet to be revealed.

Also Read: Amazon India Partners With Mahindra Electric; Will Induct Treo Zor EV In Its Delivery Fleet

Speaking on the funding, Saurav Kumar – Founder and CEO, Euler Motors said, “Our vision is to make electric vehicles mainstream in India by building commercial vehicles that are at par with ICE vehicles in terms of quality & performance. The new investment has come at a time when the company has demonstrated extreme resilience during the pandemic and is now all set for the next phase of growth. I am delighted that our existing investors trust our vision and execution, and have chosen to continue to invest in Euler Motors. With their support and that of our suppliers and team, I am confident that we will gain momentum quickly following our upcoming launch, and over time, democratize the EV market.”

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Euler Motors’ electric three-wheler will compete with the Mahindra Treo and Piaggio Ape Electric

Talking about the investment, Rutvik Doshi, MD – Inventus India said, “We are very excited and bullish on the prospects of electric vehicles in India. Recent advances in battery technology combined with favourable government policies will accelerate the adoption of EVs in this country. Euler Motors is uniquely positioned to take advantage of this transition to electric on the back of its reliable technology and help drive the adoption of electric vehicles in the light commercial segment.”

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Chirag Meswani, Managing Partner, Jetty Ventures, said, “Euler Motors is developing electric mobility solution, working closely with customer groups in live applications, and has demonstrated that it is possible to deliver world-class EV technology from India for Indian conditions. I believe they have chosen an evolutionary path that will help them emerge as a trusted brand in the light cargo mobility space. We are excited to partner with Saurav, Vani, Gaurav, and the growing Euler team.”

With the fresh funding, Euler Motors has so far raised ₹ 50 crore as part of its Series A fundraiser, while the company has raised a total of ₹ 65 crore since inception. The investment comes at a point when the company is all set to introduce its first electric cargo three-wheeler in the second quarter of 2021. The company says it plans to expand its customer base to sectors like retail, FMCG, pharma and utility.

Also Read: Piaggio Launches Ape Electrik FX Range Of Electric 3-Wheeler For Cargo And Passenger Segment

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Euler has about 250 of its three-wheeler EVs used by e-commerce companies like BigBasket, EcomExpress and Udaan in Delhi-NCR for last-mile delivery. The e-three-wheelers have collectively covered over seven million kilometres and have completed five million deliveries, according to the company. It is now building a charging infrastructure with over 100 charging stations already in place that can charge up to 200 EVs in and around Delhi-NCR. The brand’s expansion plan includes beginning operations in Bengaluru, Pune, Chennai, Mumbai and Kolkata next.

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