About the Author

Jameson Dow

Jameson has been driving electric vehicles since 2009, and has been writing about them and about clean energy for electrek.co since 2016.

You can contact him at jamie@electrek.co

Jameson Dow's Favorite Gear

Yesterday

The launch of the Model Y is imminent, but there’s still a lot we don’t know about the car. We’re still trying to figure out just how big it is, and we’ve got little information on what options will be available.

One of those questions is around additional storage space for hauling large items, like roof racks and tow hitches. We’ve seen a Model Y with a tow hitch, and now it looks like Tesla has a Model Y prototype driving around the Bay Area with a roof rack as well.

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February 23

The Tesla Model 3 extended its dominance over the California auto market last year, selling more cars than all other EVs combined in 2019, according to the California New Car Dealers Association. In addition, when removing other Tesla models from the count, the Model 3 sold more than twice as many cars as all other manufacturers’ EVs combined.

This made the Tesla Model 3 the third best-selling car overall in the state behind the Civic and Camry. This result is a move up from fifth place last year.

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February 21

Tesla CEO Elon Musk is on a roll with more announcements about the Cybertruck today.  He described a “towing calculator” which will show all kinds of real-time stats to help drivers know more about what their vehicle can handle while pulling a big load.

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February 20

Tesla rose eight spots in Consumer Reports‘ new car brand rankings, the largest rise of any brand, to become the top US brand at 11th place out of 33. This is largely due to improved reliability with the Model 3 and Model S.

The Tesla Model 3 also gained Consumer Reports‘ “Top Pick” designation as the best electric car, according to the publication.

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The Berlin Higher Administrative Court (OVG Berlin-Brandenburg) has dismissed complaints against Tesla’s European Gigafactory construction project, Giga Berlin.  This means work can resume in clearing the tree farm currently on the property.

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February 19

A ballot initiative has been proposed in San Diego that would serve to ban the sale of new gas vehicles costing over $50,000 starting next year. The initiative would also add a 2.5% tax on any gas vehicles over $50k that are purchased outside of the city and registered within city limits.

A new organization called Breathe Free America has been formed to circulate the petition for the ballot initiative, which they’ve dubbed the “Clean Vehicle Initiative.”  They are looking to gather 76,000 signatures from San Diegans in order to get it on the ballot.

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February 18

The Tesla Model Y starts shipping next month, but much still isn’t known. Tesla hasn’t released size specs yet, so we’re left with estimates based on dashcam video, product photos, or supercharger parking.

Now we have another estimate based on a more even perspective that seems to show some new information about ride and seating height. It shows that the Model Y should ride higher and be much easier to get into than the Model 3.

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Plug in America, a group that advocates for electric vehicles in the US, has announced a nationwide campaign to train car dealers how to sell electric cars. Any interested dealer can sign up for the course on Plug In America’s website and start getting training on how to better sell electric cars.

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February 17

A new bill, SB 167, has been introduced in Colorado which would allow electric vehicle manufacturers to bypass the state’s direct-sales ban.

The ban was first passed in 2010, which means Tesla’s store in the state is “grandfathered in,” though Tesla is not allowed to open other stores.  It still has several locations in the state, but these are technically “galleries”

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February 15

Drone footage: Tesla Giga Berlin forest clearing is moving quickly (UPDATE: stopped by court)

Tesla started clearing the forest at their new Giga Berlin site just two days ago, and now we have drone footage showing just how extensive the work already is.

UPDATE: Just after this article was posted, we heard that a court has temporarily ordered Tesla to stop clearing the forest, pending review of a complaint by the Grünen Liga Brandenburg (Brandenburg Green League).

February 14

Tesla has updated their Model S and X offerings with ever-higher range numbers. The cars now have a listed 390- and 351-mile range, up from the previous 373 and 328 miles.

In addition, the Model S Long Range Plus now comes standard with the new 19-inch tempest wheels. The Model X retains the same 20-inch/22-inch wheel selections as before the update.

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Volvo Trucks launched their electric heavy duty truck program in California this week, nicknamed “Volvo LIGHTS.”  Its centerpiece is the new Volvo VNR Electric heavy duty truck, which enables local and regional heavy duty cargo hauls.  It will be used in a pilot program to haul cargo from the ports of Los Angeles to regional distribution hubs in Southern California’s Inland Empire.

As part of the launch, Volvo invited us out to Fontana speedway for a quick drive of the VNR electric, which handled better than it has any right to given its huge size.

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February 12

Volvo Trucks has launched a pilot program in California that brings several of their new all-electric VNR class 8 heavy duty trucks to the road.

The company invited us out to Fontana speedway yesterday for some more insight into their program.

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February 10

Jaguar is shutting down their I-Pace line due to a shortage of batteries from LG Chem, The Times reports.

The shutdown of their production line in Graz, Austria will last a week starting next Monday.

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February 8

Tesla’s Shanghai gigafactory has been closed since January 29 due to China’s coronavirus outbreak, which has shut down many factories around the country.

We now have news that the factory will reopen on February 10 after the shutdown, and that the Shanghai government has offered “help” to companies to get production back up to speed after the shutdown (via Reuters).

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February 6

Rivian CEO, engineers share thoughts on company’s journey in new video

Rivian posted a new video covering some of the company’s history, mission, and background today.

In it, Rivian CEO RJ Scaringe and several of the company’s top engineers talk about the challenges that the company has faced and will face in the future.

The Porsche Taycan is out and we’ve already declared it the best Porsche ever, but questions still remain about the Taycan’s low efficiency and how that affects its charging rate.  Early owners and reviews have found that the Taycan is more efficient than ratings suggest, so how does that affect its actual charge rate?

Nextmove, a German YouTube channel, put the car to the test against the most efficient EV, the Tesla Model 3, to see which one would win: Tesla’s lower peak kW rate and higher efficiency, or Taycan’s higher rate and lower efficiency.

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Arcimoto has finally started deliveries of their three-wheeled “Fun Utility Vehicle,” and we caught Arcimoto CEO Mark Frohnmayer on the tail end of a cross-country tour for a short ride through Los Angeles.

We’ve driven the Arcimoto before, but those were earlier versions and shorter rides. Now that we’ve had a chance to try this fun little thing out on real roads (and in real traffic), here’s how it was.

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February 5

Shell's plan for turning a petrol station into an EV charging hub
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Shell has announced a plan to increase their EV fast-charging presence in Germany, up to 200 total charging points from their currently announced 100.

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The Model Y is shipping just next month, but for many prospective orderers, it’s still been tough to get an idea of exactly how big the car is going to be.

Thanks to some of Tesla’s product photos and Reddit user gundarx, we’re getting a clearer view than ever on just how much bigger the Model Y is than the Model 3.

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