Chevy electric sedan, Toyota Tacoma EV, Aptera charging, Tesla discount: The Week in Reverse

Christina Wilkins

Owners of which two mainstream car brands are shifting to Tesla at a high rate?

Which company might build VW’s Scout electric trucks?

This is our look back at the Week In Reverse—right here at Green Car Reports—for the week ending December 2, 2022.

Honda announced that it will make a hydrogen fuel-cell version of its CR-V starting in 2024. To be made in Ohio, the CR-V Fuel Cell will also offer a charge port, for short-range driving around town without hydrogen. 

Mercedes-Benz suggested that its eSprinter electric vans might be new benchmarks for efficiency. In a real-life range run, certified by a third party—and in its long, tall-roof version—it points to a range around 300 miles from a usable battery capacity of about 110 kwh.

Mercedes-Benz eSprinter range and efficiency test

Mercedes-Benz eSprinter range and efficiency test

The Chevrolet FNR-XE Concept EV recently shown by GM in China (at the top) is the first such model showing how the company’s Ultium platform might translate to mass-produced passenger cars. 

Otherwise loyal Honda and Toyota customers are defecting for Tesla at a high rate, according to a new study. Nearly 29% of Tesla buyers are coming from those two brands. Honda currently has no EVs in its U.S. lineup, while Toyota has just one, the bZ4X crossover. 

Aptera, the startup developing a solar-supplemented three-wheel EV with a range of up to 1,000 miles, has confirmed that it will use a Tesla charge port and connector, with corresponding charging equipment from Lectron.

Tesla Supercharger V4 cable, for up to 1 megawatt

Tesla Supercharger V4 cable, for up to 1 megawatt

Tesla confirmed megawatt charging tech for the Cybertruck and Semi, incorporating a new, specially cooled cable that works with the current Tesla connector rather than shifting toward the Megawatt Charging Standard (MCS) connector associated with CCS. 

Lightyear 0 production has started in Finland, and it’s claimed to be the first series production solar EV. The company plans a run of just 150 cars for this first model, which costs about $260,000. 

Canoo has delivered a prototype electric Light Tactical Vehicle to the U.S. Army. The single vehicle fulfills a July contract and will determine whether the Army commits to ordering production versions. 

Canoo Light Tactical Vehicle (LTV)

Canoo Light Tactical Vehicle (LTV)

Vietnam’s VinFast confirmed that it’s shipped its first batch of 999 U.S.-bound VF 8 electric SUVs, due to be delivered by the end of December. 

In manufacturing-related news, Hyundai and one of its South Korean battery suppliers, SK On, have allied to set up U.S. EV facilities that will comply with the battery and minerals sourcing requirements in the Inflation Recovery Act—potentially qualifying future Hyundai, Kia, and Genesis models for the full $7,500 EV tax credit. Ford announced that it has already made 150,000 Mustang Mach-E electric SUVs. While that’s far more than it had originally anticipated making by this point, it has work ahead to catch up with the Tesla Model Y. And Volkswagen is reportedly in talks with Foxconn to potentially build vehicles for its upcoming Scout electric truck brand. VW had been previously looking for a new American standalone factory site for Scout, so this marks an about-face.

Ford Mustang Mach-E at Port of Drammen, Norway

Ford Mustang Mach-E at Port of Drammen, Norway

A survey detailed earlier this month found that there might be significant demand, especially among Millennials, for a smaller electric truck. But the truck that was widely chosen—the Toyota Tacoma EV—doesn’t exist and hasn’t been confirmed. 

The EPA on Thursday proposed Renewable Fuel Standard targets for 2023-2025, calling to increase most types of biofuels and for the first time allowing biomethane for power generation—if accounting shows it used to charge EVs. Yet not everyone who usually sides with green-car interests thinks this is a good idea for EV adoption. 

Alternative Fuels Corridors for EVs - DOE Alternative Fuels Data Center, Nov. 2022

Alternative Fuels Corridors for EVs – DOE Alternative Fuels Data Center, Nov. 2022

Want to see where future EV fast-charging routes might go? While Electrify America and Tesla might be hard to predict, a map of Alternative Fuel Corridors provides a quick snapshot of the federal EV charging network by mid-decade. 

A future Volkswagen e-Golf is once again a possibility, according to a report from Germany, as VW mulls how it might more widely use its MEB platform. 

PlugOut-5 inverter for Toyota/Lexus hybrids

PlugOut-5 inverter for Toyota/Lexus hybrids

With hardware that’s been available for nearly 10 years, you can use a Toyota Prius for emergency power backup. It’s a reminder that if you need the most basic home backup you don’t have to commit to an expensive electric truck or home energy storage system. 

Caterpillar showed how to scale up EVs—with a mammoth electric mining truck that might, without tailpipe emissions, be used to move the raw materials needed to produce them. 

2019 Tesla Cybertruck Prototype (Petersen Automotive Museum)

2019 Tesla Cybertruck Prototype (Petersen Automotive Museum)

From the 1997 AC Propulsion inspiration for the Roadster, to the Cybertruck prototype we’re still waiting for, the Tesla exhibit at L.A.’s Petersen Automotive Museum rounds up more than production models and top-level bragging rights. 

And if you’re shopping for a new EV this weekend, there’s a rare deal on Tesla models—with the automaker offering a $3,750 discount on the Model 3 and Model Y, in some cases, through December. Yes, that’s the same amount some Tesla models will be eligible under a revamped EV tax credit starting January 1.

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