The Business Motoring Week May 182018
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Tesla-based producton Shooting Brake
Tesla-based Shooting Brake took me completely by surprise

Tesla Shooting Brake revealed

I thought I had a pretty good handle on the Tesla product programme – although there’s no saying what Elon Musk might have up his sleeve.

On the horizon – at some stage – is the compact executive saloon called Tesla Model 3. But I hadn’t reckoned on this estate Shooting Brake version.

QWest Tesla Shooting Brake
Awwwww….Perfect pooch carrier!

Read how you can take your dogs for the ride of their life – emission free!

Ford F-150 Raptor RHD - Clive SuttonRaptor – it’s big, brutal, and over here

At the other end of the scale from the Tesla Shooting Brake is this simply awesome Ford F-150 truck (to use US terminology) – but pick-up to most of us in the UK.

Clive Sutton, who has history on American imports, is offering this right-hand drive monster. For those of a sensitive disposition, avert your eyes now, but power comes from Ford’s 3.5 V6 so it’s sure to sound suitably thunderous. More details on Business Vans.

Meanwhile trucks, such as the F-150 and SUVs, continue to drive forward the US market, in this latest report from IHS Markit.

Hyundai ix35 Fuel CellHydrogen to rewrite rules of depreciation

Hard to believe for a fuel that is available in so few locations, and the number of hydrogen fuelled cars is at … well, currently one at the moment… that hydrogen should be touted as the fuel that will reshape the depreciation curve on cars.

However, that’s the view of Jon Hunt, manager, Toyota and Lexus fleet marketing, who spoke at a remarketing conference last week:

“In the case of a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, the traditional residual value model no longer applies. Unlike a combustion engine or battery power, the fuel cell does not wear out, extending the life and value of a vehicle with relatively low cost cosmetic refurbishment.”

I’m a big fan of hydrogen. It can be incorporated in the existing refuelling infrastructure we have, ie current fuelling stations, and has none of the range anxiety issues of electric vehicles – and none of the issues about trying to recharge them at home.

I first got to drive the hydrogen Hyundai (above) back in 2013 – here’s my first drive impression of the Hyundai ix35 Fuel Cell – while you can read more about hydrogen breaking the rules of depreciation here.

MINI gets its (Merc) man

David George MINI DirectorThere’s a new person at the helm of MINI – and he’s from…well…rivals Mercedes: a case of swapping Gerlanderwagens for Countrymans. Of course MINI has a major place in the collective hearts of UK plc, from momentous Monte Carlo victories to the cheeky chap stars of the Italian Job. And at some stage we have all owned one.

David George, MINI’s new director, pictured, seems well aware of the importance of the brand to us all. “I first fell in love with the brand at the age of 21 when a friend and I travelled across Europe in a Clubman which we had restored,” explains David. Let’s hope that love continues during his stewardship of the MINI brand. Check out the latest changes to the MINI here: 2018 update sees MINI get more business attractive.

Vehicle-to-Grid evaluationWhy V2G is VG for all of us and not just EVs

Well, it’s acronym overload in the automotive industry, but this could be a ground-breaking trial of V2G is vehicle-to-grid technology.​ In other words, when demand is required, electricity flows from electric vehicles (EVs) to the electricity grid; when demand has lessened it flows back to the electric vehicle.

Announced by Richard Harrington, minister for the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, there is £9.8m awarded for a Vehicle-to-Grid demonstrator project led by Nissan, part of the e4Future project. Read more about the vehicle-to-grid project here: it could be a big step towards an electric future.

Which would be VG (Very Good)!

 

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