World’s Largest Automakers May 2018: VW extending its lead – slightly

The battle for World’s Largest Automaker 2018 turns more and more into a bitter fight between Volkswagen Group and the Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi Alliance. Five months into the year, VW managed to extend its lead ever so slightly, with only 45,000 units separating the Germans from the French-Japanese nipping at their heels.

Former ichi ban Toyota apparently has decided to sit back and relax. Toyota Group’s worldwide production basically is the same it was January to May 2017. [Continue Reading]

Dieselgate Now Officially An Industry-Wide Problem As Cancer Worries Mount

clean diesel

The European auto industry so far has tried to paint dieselgate as an isolated Volkswagen case. Yesterday, diesel emissions officially became what campaigners always claimed they are: An industry-wide problem. On Tuesday, French automaker Renault said it plans a software change to its diesel engine in order to lower excessive nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions.

This after investigators raided Renault’s offices on January 14, and after Renault was called on the carpet by a French government-led commission that found relatively high NOx emissions from Renault models ….

More in Forbes.

Fears of #dieselgate contagion hammer shares of EU automakers

renault-koleos-diesel - Picture courtesy

Shares of European carmakers took a nosedive today on news that Renault’s offices were searched last week “regarding a fraud investigation possibly linked to emissions,” as Reuters put it.  More in Forbes

#Dieseldämmerung: DUH tests Renault Espace with “frightening” results

renault-escpace-2015 Picture couresy Autocar

As expected by the Dailykanban, German environmental group Deutsche Umwelthilfe today said cars by French automaker Renault are exceeding EU NOx limits in an alarming way. [Continue Reading]

#Dieselgate: France’s Economy Minister points fingers at Detroit, Bloomberg suppresses story

Macron points finger at Detroit, somewhere over his right shoulder

Macron points finger at Detroit, somewhere over his right shoulder

France’s Economy Minister Emmanuel Macron accuses American automakers of exploiting the crisis at Volkswagen to “weaken the European industry,” media reports from France say. Frankly, I would be astonished if Detroit lets the scandal go by without a little hay making. American news outlets apparently think the story is too much for the tender feelings of their readers, and they actively suppress the story. [Continue Reading]

Renault’s Zoe gets range-stretching engine – but what about the Nissan Leaf?


IHS, the company that also owns a private sector military intelligence network that goes by the name of Jane’s, spotted a new engine that improves the range of Renault’s electric Zoe by 20km. Slated to appear in the 2015 model, the new engine is said to be more “compact, lighter and efficient than the present engine which powers the ZOE, thus offering a range increase of 8%.”

Says IHS (and dammit, could Microsoft’s church-going autocorrect PLEASE stop changing “IHS” to “HIS” whenever I type it, please?????): [Continue Reading]

EU powerhouses France and Germany say death to diesel, all hail EV

Merkel-Hollande Picture courtesy

From one day to the other, Europe appears to throw the switch from being EV-skeptics to becoming all-out EV-fanatics. Diesel, the highly popular propulsion in the Old Country, is being turned into a villain and chased off the streets, and there is sudden agreement that the streets belong to battery-electrics. [Continue Reading]

Toyota leads competition with first commercial launch of fuel cell vehicle, named Mirai

Da scheppert ja scho wieder nix!

Da scheppert ja scho wieder nix!

Last July, Bloomberg said that Toyota is planning to name its upcoming hydrogen-powered fuel cell car “Mirai, the Japanese word for future.” Bloomberg had pulled the info from a treasure-trove of investigative reporting, the USPTO trademark register, where, on November 29, 2013, “TOYOTA MIRAI” reached protection from infringers peddling “Automobiles and structural parts thereof.” Today, Toyota confirmed that it will put the Mirai trademark to good use as the badge of its futuristic FCV. This announcement comes as no surprise to the Tokyo automotive press corps. After all, about a month ago, Tokyo’s fourwheeled fourth estate was invited to attend the revelation of the production version of the FCV, to be held tomorrow at Tokyo’s National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, known to Nihono natives as “Miraikan” (= Hall of the Future”).

Toyota, which is prominently skeptical about the large scale future of the battery electric vehicle, says that a car electrified via hydrogen has all of an EV’s advantages, namely no tailpipe emissions, and none of the shortcomings that stand in the way of wholesale adoption. “This groundbreaking vehicle has the cruising range of a conventional sedan, can be refueled in less than five minutes and emits only water vapor,” Toyota’s chief Akio Toyoda said today in a Youtube video. [Continue Reading]