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0:08 Hino Expelled from Japanese CV Partnership
0:48 Toyota Now Backs California Emission Standards
1:23 Toyota Teams with NREL To Test Fuel Cell Generators
2:29 Mercedes Recycles Old Tires into Door Handles
3:23 Ford Transit Connect Axed in U.S. Due to Poor Sales
3:46 Renault Creates Kangoo-Based EV Camper Van
5:15 Honda Wants to Reduce Reliance on Chinese Parts
6:02 VW & Mercedes Sign EV Raw Material Deals with Canada
6:34 Walmart Already Testing Canoo EVs
This is Autoline Daily, the show dedicated to enthusiasts of the global automotive industry.
HINO EXPELLED FROM JAPANESE CV PARTNERSHIP
Toyota’s commercial truck subsidiary, Hino, is getting expelled from a Japanese commercial vehicle partnership because it admitted earlier this month to falsifying emissions and fuel economy data as far back as 2003. The Commercial Japan Partnership Technologies, which includes Toyota, Isuzu, Suzuki and Daihatsu, was formed last year to promote technology development for commercial vehicles. Even though Toyota is a majority stakeholder in Hino, the commercial truck maker will be excluded from all agreements and planning made by the group and its 10% stake in the partnership will be transferred to Toyota.
TOYOTA NOW BACKS CALIFORNIA EMISSION STANDARDS
And speaking of Toyota, the automaker says it now recognizes California’s authority to set its own vehicle emissions standards. In 2019, Toyota and several other automakers backed the Trump Administration’s effort to deny California the right to set its own targets. But earlier this year, the EPA reinstated that ability. By recognizing its authority, Toyota now qualifies for government fleet purchases by the state, which California halted in 2019 after the company backed the Trump Administration.
TOYOTA TEAMS WITH NREL TO TEST FUEL CELL GENERATORS
And in one last bit of Toyota news, the automaker is partnering with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory to build, install and evaluate a fuel cell generator at the NREL’s campus in Colorado. The 1-megawatt system integrates multiple fuel cell modules into a larger unit to provide stationary power. The 3 year, $6.5 million project is funded in part by the Department of Energy’s Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technologies Office.
MERCEDES RECYCLES OLD TIRES INTO DOOR HANDLES
Mercedes is taking old tires and turning them into door handles. It’s teamed up with BASF and another company, called Pyrum Innovations, to first break down scrap tires into a type of oil, which is then combined with biomethane from agricultural waste to create a virgin plastic. Not only does this reduce the use of fossil fuels but also the plastic’s carbon footprint and its said to have the same characteristics as plastics made from crude oil. Starting this year, Mercedes will use this new plastic to make door handles for the S-Class and EQE as well as for a crash absorption material on the front end of the S-Class. It will also look for other applications as it attempts to increase the average use of recycled materials in its fleet to 40% by 2030.
FORD TRANSIT CONNECT AXED IN U.S. DUE TO POOR SALES
Say goodbye to the Ford Transit Connect if you live in the U.S. Automotive News reports that it will stop selling the small van at the end of next year due to poor sales. They fell 25% last year and are down an additional 15% through July. Ford also shelved plans to build the Transit Connect’s next-gen model in Mexico.
RENAULT CREATES KANGOO-BASED EV CAMPER VAN
With more and more people wanting to experience the great outdoors, Renault is showing off a cool camper van with an even funnier name. The Hippie Caviar Motel is based on the electric version of its Kangoo van and is meant to be like a mobile base camp. It comes with special storage, a roof rack that still allows a view through the large glass sunroof and a bench seat that turns into a bed. Last year, Renault showed off a similar-ish model based on its Trafic van, which turned into a version that you can order from its catalog, so maybe the same will happen with this van.
HONDA WANTS TO REDUCE RELIANCE ON CHINESE PARTS
Earlier this month, we reported that Mazda wants to reduce its reliance on parts made in China because of COVID lockdowns, which cost the automaker $145 million in its most recent quarter. And now, Japan’s Sankei newspaper reports Honda is also considering cutting back on the number of parts it gets from China. It wants to keep its supply base in China for vehicles produced in the country, but could build a separate supply chain for vehicles built outside China. Honda is also concerned about lockdowns as well as growing tensions between the U.S. and China. But the automaker is fairly reliant on China, which accounts for nearly 40% of its car production.
VW & MERCEDES SIGN EV RAW MATERIAL DEALS WITH CANADA
Yesterday, we reported that Volkswagen is taking stakes in Canadian mines and mine operators to secure the raw materials its needs to build EV batteries and electric motors. Well it’s not the only German automaker making that deal. Both VW and Mercedes-Benz signed separate memorandum of understandings with the Canadian government to get the raw materials they need for electric vehicles. Canada is an attractive source because it pretty much has all the materials needed for EV batteries and motors.
WALMART ALREADY TESTING CANOO EVs
Well, that didn’t take long. Only two weeks after signing a purchase order for 4,500 vehicles, Canoo and Walmart have started real-world trials of its electric delivery van. They were deployed in Texas for a week making at-home deliveries, including refrigerated items, groceries and other merchandise. The two companies will use these trials to finalize the configuration of the vehicles Canoo delivers to Walmart.
But that wraps up today’s show, thanks for watching and please join us again tomorrow.
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Seamus and Sean McElroy cover the latest news in the automotive industry for Autoline Daily.