California’s a huge market for Tesla, the Netherlands loves Tesla, Switzerland loves Tesla, but no state or country is as Tesla obsessed as Norway.
Whereas electric vehicles are still at 1–2% market share in many auto markets, or 6–10% in good markets, fully electric vehicles accounted for 38% of new passenger vehicle sales in Norway last month.
If you’re like me, you’d like to check your senses now and confirm the 38% related to fully electric vehicles, not also plug-in hybrids. Indeed, that’s only for the purest of the pure, while another 25% were hybrids, 41% of which were plug-in hybrids. That means nearly 50% of new vehicle sales were plug-in vehicles sales.
King of the hill among all of these electric and electrified vehicles, as usual, was the Tesla Model 3. The Model 3 is so popular there that it accounted for 12.4% of the Norwegian auto market in January–July of this year. Good luck finding a country with a 12.4% EV market share, let alone a 12.4% Tesla Model 3 market share. That percentage means that one out of every eight vehicles sold in the country was a Model 3 — not for one month, not for two months, but for a 7 month timespan.
» Read more about electric vehicle sales in Norway by Zachary Shahan in Clean Technica
Timothy B. Lee, Ars Technica:
Musk is discovering that large-scale car manufacturing is really hard, and it’s not easy to improve on the methods of conventional automakers. And while automation obviously plays an important role in car manufacturing, it’s not the magic bullet Musk imagined a couple of years ago. Far from leapfrogging the techniques of conventional automakers, Tesla is now struggling just to match the efficiency of its more established rivals.
In reporting this story, we talked to two different experts who drew the same parallel to GM’s automation efforts in the 1980s. At the time, GM was being led by chairman and CEO Roger Smith and faced rising competition from Toyota and other foreign carmakers. Smith had a vision for a “lights out” car factory where robots would do the bulk of the work, allowing GM to produce cars more efficiently than anyone else.
In their 1994 book Comeback, Paul Ingrassia and Joseph White (Author) described the results of Smith’s automation project at GM’s plant in Hamtramck, Michigan:
As Hamtramck’s assembly line tried to gain speed, the computer-guided dolly wandered off course. The spray-painting robots began spraying each other instead of the cars, causing GM to truck the cars across town to a fifty-seven-year-old Cadillac plant for repainting. When a massive computer-controlled ‘robogate’ welding machine smashed a car body, or a welding machine stopped dead, the entire Hamtramck line would stop. Workers could do nothing but stand around and wait while managers called in the robot contractor’s technicians.
Darrell Etherington, TechCrunch:
Prior to their deletion, both the SpaceX and Tesla pages had over 2.6 million Likes and Follows, and super high engagement rates. You have to wonder whether Musk’s social media management employees cried a little when these went down.
Nick Gibbs, Automotive News:
The Model S has outsold German rivals in the upper-sedan category in the U.S in previous years, but never in Europe.
“This is an alarm for the traditional automakers such as Mercedes. It says a smaller but smarter brand such as Tesla can beat them at home,” said Felipe Munoz, an analyst with market researchers JATO Dynamics.
European automakers need to address the electrification faster because customers are showing more and more interest in such vehicles and it seems that the traditional industry “can’t deliver on time,” Munoz said.
Tesla’s Model S outsold Germany’s flagship sedans in Europe in 2017 – Quartz
Tesla outsells BMW, Audi and Mercedes’ flagships in their home market – CNET
Viknesh Vijayenthiran, writing for Motoring Authority:
It may be early days for electric cars but they already have support from motorsport’s governing body, the FIA, in formula racing, and now in GT racing too.
The FIA this week sanctioned the new GT race series being built around the Tesla Model S. It’s been branded the Electric Production Car Series (EPCS), instead of the former Electric GT name, and the aim is to get a more diverse range of models involved eventually. Just imagine the Porsche Mission E lining up against the Model S.
However, for the inaugural season, which organizers hope to have up and running by next year, all teams will use a common race car based on the Tesla Model S P100D. The cars have all been modified, with the key changes being the removal of roughly 1,100 pounds from the curb weight as well as a boost in output to 778 horsepower and 734 pound-feet of torque.
Tesla is about to find out just how much people are interested in solar. They are bringing their photovoltaic panels and Powerwall batteries to US retail giant Home Depot,
Matthew Townsend, reporting for Bloomberg:
Tesla Inc. is planning a major expansion of its solar division at Home Depot Inc., embarking on a critical test of the mainstream appeal of its renewable-energy products.
The tech pioneer, best known for its electric cars, is beginning to roll out Tesla-branded selling spaces at 800 of the retailer’s locations, the company confirmed to Bloomberg News. The areas, which will be outfitted during the first half of this year, are staffed by Tesla employees and can demonstrate its solar panels and Powerwall battery.