Volvo Gent in picture to build Chinese Lynk

November 29, 2017

Chinese car maker Geely, owner of Volvo, considers building its new branded Lynk 01 car in the Belgian Volvo factory in Ghent. This was confined to the Reuters news agency in an interview by Alain Visser, commercial director at Lynk & Co and a Belgian himself. Same platform as XC40 The new brand is a […]

Belgium one of Europe’s forerunners on clean technology

November 29, 2017

Clean technology or sustainable tech is growing in Belgium, making it one of the forerunners in Europe. Especially in waste recycling and offshore wind farms. Less in electrical cars, although the growth percentage looks spectacular: +147%. These are some of the results you can read in the yearly report of i-Cleantech Flanders, a networking organization […]

Audi Ingolstadt gets two electric SUV models to build

November 29, 2017

German car builder Audi is going to build two new electric SUV models in its home factory in Ingolstadt (Germany) from 2021 on. This was confirmed by CEO Rupert Stadler on Tuesday. He promised the German Audi employees job security until 2025. Audi’s two first electric models will be build in Brussels (Vorst), starting in […]

VW fined for 450.000 euro by Dutch ACM for dieselgate

November 28, 2017

The Dutch government Authority for Consumer and Market (ACM) has fined Volkswagen with the maximum fine possible, 450.000 euro, for using cheating software and misleading Dutch consumers. Cheating software Volkswagen claimed that its diesels complied with the European standards, but in 2015 the dieselgate scandal broke in the US, showing that the German car maker […]

Lada resumes export to Cuba after twelve years

November 28, 2017

Russian car manufacturer Avtovaz, controled by French car maker Renault, is resuming export of Lada cars to Cuba after a twelve year stop. A first shipment of some 350 cars of the latest two models are expected in Havana beginning next year. Public taxi companies The new Ladas will be used by local public taxi […]

Industry opposed to nuclear phase-out by 2025

November 28, 2017

Three major federations of the Belgian heavy industry, Agoria, Essenscia and Febeliec are ringing the alarm bell on the governments intentions for a total nuclear phase-out by 2025. They want to keep open at least two nuclear power plants to save 600 million euro. Agoria (tech federation), Essencia (chemical) and Feleliec (bulk consumers) react to […]

Shell to roll out 80 superfast Ionity chargers across Europe

November 28, 2017

Dutch oil company Shell announced on Monday an agreement with tech company Ionity, to roll out 80 of their superfast chargers in Shell’s own pump station network. Ionity, created by car makers BMW, Daimler, Porsche, Audi and Ford in 2016, develops chargers that allow to charge a battery in five to eight minutes. Ionity’s mission […]

Final rush on ‘fake’ plug-in hybrids

November 27, 2017

Premium brands of plug-in hybrids are overwhelmed these days with ‘last minute’ orders for luxury plug-in hybrids before the end of the year. These cars, combining a fat combustion engine with a small battery driven electro-motor with an average range of 40 km, are targeted by Belgian federal government as ‘fake hybrids’ and will lose […]

‘Electric cars only get 60% as far as advertised’

November 27, 2017

The most popular and affordable electric cars sold in Europe today perform on average only 60% of the maximum range advertised by car makers. This was found out by a test of Swiss television show “A bon entendeur” in cooperation with consumer organizations UFC Que Choisir, Test-Aankoop/Test Achat (TA) and other European sister organizations. For […]

Musk sticks to his word on mega-battery for South Australia

November 24, 2017

Tesla’s CEO Elon Musk seems to stick to his word in delivering a 100 megawatt super-battery for South Australia in less than 100 days. The battery, set up 200 km north of Adelaide in Jamestown, nears completion and can be tested next week. Musk outsmarted 90 competitors willing to deliver a super-lithium ion battery by […]

Ghent kicks off with XC40 as world centre for compact Volvo

November 23, 2017

On Wednesday Belgian Prime Minister Charles Michel (MR) was invited to drive the first Volvo XC40 to be sold to a Swedish customer, off the assembly line in the factory in Ghent. Volvo Gent will produce 108.000 to 115.000 XC40s per year for a major part of the worldwide market (except China), including the US […]

Personal data of 57 million Uber users hacked

November 22, 2017

On Tuesday Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi has revealed that personal data of some 57 million Uber users, clients and drivers, has been hacked at the end of 2016. Data consisted of names, electronic addresses and mobile phone numbers, the CEO confirmed in a press release. No bank card data External expert assessment confirms that the […]

Taxistop matches carpooling between companies in Antwerp harbour

November 22, 2017

Car ride sharing organization Taxistop has developed with its Carpool.be platform a project to match carpool routes for employees of companies in the Antwerp harbour. Employees of six participating companies get a personalized offer to share a car with someone of a nearby company. Preregistration Taxistop developed the application after the ‘Slim Naar Antwerpen’ call […]

EU-Commissioner Bienkowska: ‘I wouldn’t buy a Volkswagen anymore’

November 21, 2017

Three years after dieselgate burst out, what has really changed? “I wouldn’t buy a Volkswagen anymore”, says EU Commissioner for Industry Elzbieta Bienkowska (53) in an interview with Dutch newspaper Algemeen Dagblad. She grew up in communist Poland, being the daughter of a car technician. And it was she who got to deal with the […]

What is D’Ieteren going to do with one billion euro cash ?

November 21, 2017

With the sale of 40% of its Belron business, Belgium’s largest car importer, family concern D’Ieteren, is sitting on a pile of one billion euro in cash. Asked by newspapers L’Echo and De Tijd what D’Ieteren is going to do with it , CEO Axel Miller answers “not to be in a hurry in looking […]

Uber orders 24.000 Volvo XC90s for autonomous fleet

November 21, 2017

Uber, worldwide operating transportation technology company, has ordered 24.000 Volvo XC90s with the Swedish-Chinese car manufacturer for its future autonomous driving fleet. The cars will be build on the Volvo’s SPA platform (Scalable Product Architecture) for bigger cars like the XC90 SUV and will be delivered between 2019 and 2021. Volvo didn’t say how many […]

American investor to take part in D’Ieteren’s Belron

November 20, 2017

Belgian car importer and owner of Belron, world market leader in replacement of car windows with brands like Carglass, Autoglass and Safelite, is likely to conclude a deal with American investor company Clayton, Dublilier & Rice (CD&R) to take a 40% part in Belron. This was confirmed by D’Ieteren on Sunday. D’Ieteren had announced already […]

‘Elon Musk scatters new promises but can’t fulfil old ones’

November 20, 2017

Last week Elon Musk surprised the world again after introducing the Tesla Semi electric truck, with a late Steve Jobs like ‘one more last thing’: a new Tesla supercar rolling out of the back of one of the trucks. The charismatic entrepreneur keeps on scattering new promises, but can’t fulfil the old ones up today, […]

OnePark: ‘booking.come’ of car parking

November 17, 2017

French start-up OnePark collects 12 million euros to develop its activity in France and Europe. OnePark offers drivers the possibility to reserve vacant parking spots from hotels or companies, with an app. A kind of ‘booking.com’ of car parking. OnePark is a French start-up that claims to be number one in parking spots booking to […]

EU car market: 5,9% growth in October

November 17, 2017

The European car market is doing well, with a 5,9% growth in October compared to the same period last year. Registrations have majorly increased in France, Spain and Italy and Volkswagen Group still reigns on the EU car market with PSA and Renault taking second and third place. According to data from the European Automobile […]

French less likely to take train

November 17, 2017

Unlike in the rest of Europe, the train is loosing ground in France compared to other modes of transport. In 2016, it only represented 9,2% of all trips in France resulting from a decreasing number of passengers since 2011. 79% of all movements are done by car, sharing included. According to data from the French […]

PSA and Huawei to partner for connected cars

November 15, 2017

French car maker PSA Group and Chinese telecom manufacturer Huawei announced a new partnership to develop a platform dedicated to connected vehicles. Named CVMP (Connected Vehicle Modular Platform), this new platform has been created by the French car manufacturer group PSA and Chinese telecom manufacturer Huawei. “It will allow to deploy new services such as […]

Elia: ‘Gas needed for electricity to replace nuclear’

November 15, 2017

In a report, unveiled on Wednesday, Belgian national grid managing company Elia, states that in spite of renewable energy sources, new gas powerhouses will need to be build to replace nuclear power after 2025. Elia sees three possible scenarios. And it urges the government to act fast. Basis scenario The basic scenario starts from the […]

Free truck driver training to fill gap of 3.000 vacancies

November 14, 2017

Seventy per cent of Belgian transport companies is looking for new people to drive their lorries. More than 3.000 vacancies for the job of truck driver remain open. The province of Limburg, where at least 200 vacancies are open, together with Flemish employment agency VDAB are offering free driver training to fill the gap. The […]

‘Amsterdam International Motor Show’ revives in 2018

November 14, 2017

After several cancellations due to insufficient participants in the past, a ‘new’ Amsterdam International Motor Show (IAMS) is to revive again at the Easter weekend of 2018. Away from the traditional motor shows, focus will be exclusively on special cars, super cars, classic cars and electric cars. Motor shows around the world are having increasing […]

PSA to produce 75.000 cars in Algeria

November 13, 2017

French car maker group PSA created this Sunday a new joint venture with three Algerian companies to build cars in a new plant in Oran. In five years, it should produce 75.000 Peugeots and Citroëns. After Renault, Hyundai and Volkswagen, PSA’s is to start building cars in Algeria. After two years of negotiations, the French […]

For sale: world’s largest lithium mine

November 13, 2017

Chilean mining company SQM, exploiting the world’s largest lithium mine today, is up for sale partially, for 32% or somewhat 4 billion dollar. Twelve companies are said to have made a bid, among which some big Chinese state owned, but also Belgian battery component supplier Umicore. Stakes are gigantic: a dominant position on the booming […]

‘Mr Russia’ to head Kia Motors Europe

November 10, 2017

To lead its European division, Kia Motors has chosen Yong Kew Park, nicknamed ‘Mr Russia’. Leading the Russian Kia division, he managed to make the South Korean the top seller in the Russian car market in one year. Today, one car out of ten sold in Russia is a Kia. USA, Africa, China and Europe […]

Audi: all synthetic diesel, made out of CO2

November 10, 2017

Creating diesel out of CO2 from the atmosphere isn’t a theory anymore. The proof is that Audi will build a synthetic diesel production plant in 2018. This possibly ideal fuel emits less sulphur and would be neutral in terms of CO2, but its production will be marginal for now due to costs. Producing fuel synthetically […]

Lampiris switches entire fleet to electric

November 10, 2017

At Lampiris, all workers will have to drive electric by 2021. The Liège based energy supplier wants to become an electric pioneer in the world of company fleets. “We are the first in Belgium to completely switch to electric cars, but at the same time it is becoming a testcase’, says Gaëtan Mondet, general manager […]

Van Hool supplies 14 tram buses for Heizel to Brussels Airport line

November 09, 2017

Flemish public transport company De Lijn sees it ambitiuos: they want to take 10.000 cars off the roads every day in the northern edge of Brussels. Therefore De Lijn have ordered fourteen trambuses from bus builder Van Hool from Koningshooikt (Lier). Alternative to tram The trambuses are of the Exqui.City 24 Hyb type. They can […]

Europe ‘spares’ car makers in battle for less CO2 emissions

November 09, 2017

Towards 2030 CO2-emissions of cars and vans in the EU have to be reduced by 30 %. The actual legislation says 95 g/km for cars and 147 g/km for vans by 2021. The European commission wants an enforced CO2-reduction of 15 % towards 2025 and 30 % towards 2030. A measure that is approved, neither […]

Sales of electric cars go up in EU, Belgium stays behind

November 09, 2017

Sales of electric cars in the European Union increased again in the third quarter. This says European sector organization ACEA. Sales increased by nearly 61 % to 23.841 cars on a yearly base. In Belgium growth was limited to 21 % or 560 cars. Almost all EU-countries saw a strong growth. In the Netherlands sales […]

UberAIR: ‘same price as UberX but at 320 kph in the air’

November 09, 2017

During the Lisbon Web Summit, Uber chief product officer Jeff Holden confirmed a partnership with NASA for its future air taxis. Part of the Uber Elevate program, the company wants to revolutionize the urban air transport with small electric air taxis by 2023. Flying taxis With Uber Elevate, the amercian company aims at a friendly […]

‘Car industry will fail to achieve 2021 CO2 targets’

November 09, 2017

While Europe is setting the bar higher for 2025 and 2030, the majority of car manufacturers will even fail to meet Europe’s CO2 emission targets set for 2021. Heavy fines are waiting for them, which in some cases can amount to up to 1.7 billion euro. This is the conclusion of the British consulting firm […]

Opel’s PACE! plan to profitabllity: shifting down to accelerate

November 09, 2017

On Thursday, Opel’s CEO Michael Lohscheller has unfolded his plans – called PACE! –  to regain profitability by 2020 as demanded by PSA. Without ‘forced redundancies and while keeping all plants open’ Opel will reduce costs by 700 euro per car among others and go all the way in synchronizing with PSA for efficiency. All […]

Container shipping company CMA-CGM to drive ships with natural gas

November 08, 2017

French shipping company CMA-CGM decided to equip its future container carriers with a power plant running on liquefied natural gas (LNG) to reduce emissions. Deliveries are planned for 2020. CMA-CGM claims to be “the first maritime shipping company in the world to equip its container carriers with this power plant”. Using LNG as fuel will […]

Opel to present its new plan to be profitable again

November 08, 2017

German car maker Opel, recently bought by French group PSA, will present its new recovery plan on Thursday. The brand has to face huge competitively deficits and might have to let go its redundant staff. Opel and its British sibling Vauxhall were taken over from General Motors by the French group PSA back in July […]

Belgian AI-expert trains robots with virtual reality

November 08, 2017

Belgian professor Pieter Abbeel, worldwide renowned artificial intelligence and robotics (AI) researcher at the Berkeley University (California), has left the university to start up his own company, Embodied Intelligence, aimed at training robots. Like the ones used massively in car production for instance , by ‘getting into the robot itself’ by means of virtual reality […]

Second hand diesel cars increasingly difficult to sell

November 07, 2017

According to recent figures from the Flemish mobility organization VAB, the price of the second hand diesel car take a serious dive. The sector even predicts that prices will dip further. Already today, VAB sells only 16% diesel-occasions compared to 84% used cars on petrol. Five years ago this balance was 61% diesel-occasions to 39% […]

ICCT: cars consume 42% more than advertised

November 07, 2017

Fuel consumption of new cars on the road is in average 42 % higher than what the type-approval test results promise. This says a survey by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT). In 2001 the difference was only 9 %. The ICCT is a non-governmental organization based in Berlin and the US, that published […]

Merkel puts brake on strikter EU car CO2 emission standards

November 07, 2017

Last few weeks, German chancellor Angela Merkel’s entourage is lobbying heavily in Brussels to put the brake on the EU Commission proposal for new CO2 emission standards until 2030 it is to present on Wednesday. These would imply a general CO2 decrease of 25 to 35% for cars and vans, eventually with an interim deadline […]

BMW, VW, Daimler and Ford to build 400 fast charging stations in Europe

November 06, 2017

Four big car makers have created a joint venture under the name Ionity with the objective to build about 400 fast charging stations all over Europe by 2020. The point is to have one charging point each 120 km. One year ago, BMW, Volkswagen, Daimler and Ford signed a memorandum for the construction of a […]

Elon Musk promising too much too soon?

November 03, 2017

Elon Musk himself predicted that the production start of the Model 3 would be ‘a hell’. But the actual problems go beyond his worst case scenario. Especially the software for the Model 3 batteries from Tesla’s own Gigafactory turns out to be problematic. Production prognoses are delayed by another three months. GigaFactory If all goes […]

Erdogan wants new car brand ‘made in Turkey’

November 03, 2017

Turkish President Erdogan announced a plan to launch a new car brand, entirely made in Turkey. His aim? To see a car rolling off the domestic assembly line by 2021. For years now, a domestic produced car has been an objective for the Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AK Parti), as a symbol of the […]

Car maintenance costs shot up with 32,6%

November 03, 2017

Car maintenance and repair costs shot up with +32,6% in Belgium since 2008, higher than in the neighbouring countries the Netherlands (+21,9%), Germany (+25,5%) and France (+24,5%). This is one of the conclusions of the latest study of the Belgian Price Observatory, part of the federal Agency for Economics. The study focuses on the total […]

Tesla struggles with biggest quarterly loss ever

November 02, 2017

Californian electric car maker Tesla announced on Wedsnesday its biggest quarterly loss ever, due to continuing production problems with the new Model 3 and 700 sacked employees. Since it entered the stock market back in June 29 2010, Tesla has experienced eight annual losses. Yesterday, the company announced its biggest loss ever of 620 million […]

ACEA: ‘Electric car market only growing in wealthier countries’

November 02, 2017

“Electric car sales are progressing all around the world, but only evolve in EU countries with a GDP (Gross Domestic Product) of more than 30.000 per inhabitant, the more wealthy countries”, European Automobile Manufacturers Association ACEA explains. Since the beginning of this year, electric car sales are taking off. This market growth is pulled upwards […]

Judge to rule next month in TA class action against VW-D’Ieteren

October 31, 2017

After hearing the final pleadings in the class action of consumer organization Test-Aankoop/Test-Achat (TA) and Volkswagen – D’Ieteren, the Brussels Court of First Instance’s judge has one month to decide whether the case is admissible or not. Compensation In June of last year, TA started a collective legal action or so-called ‘class action’ for about […]

Swedish buy seven Belgian Mercedes dealerships

October 31, 2017

Swedish Anders Hedin Invest is taking over seven Mercedes dealerships in Oost-Vlaanderen, Belgium. Anders Hedin is Sweden’s largest Mercedes-Benz dealer group. The dealerships, managed until now by Mercedes-Benz Belgium-Luxembourg’s own succursal, are concentrated around Ghent (Ghent, Gent Zeehaven, Sint-Martens Latem, Eeklo) and in Aalst, Ninove and Zottegem. Together the dealerships realize a turnover of around […]

‘Pilots are quitting Ryanair massively’

October 30, 2017

According to information gathered by the Belgian newspaper “La Libre”, 110 pilots have quit Ryanair last week. Since 20.000 flights were cancelled due to the shortage of pilots available, Ryanair experiences a resignation rate of 23 per week. Ryanair had to cancel 20.000 flights until next March due to employee’s vacation scheduling problems. Since then, […]

Subaru confirms improper certification for Japanese market

October 30, 2017

Japanese carmaker Subaru has confirmed that its certification method for home market cars wasn’t done by certified inspectors, just like Nissan. The company plans on recalling 250.000 cars. “These methods involving controlling new vehicles by non-accredited inspectors for the Japanese market have been going on for 30 years at Subaru”, declared CEO Yasuyuki Yoshinaga. The […]

Brussels Airport orders 30 Chinese electric buses

October 30, 2017

In spite of earlier Belgian bus manufacturers’ objections, Brussels Airport has confirmed its order of 30 full electric busus with Chinese BYD. BYD Europe gets 330.000 euro per bus, which is 33% cheaper than the second best bidder, VDL Roeleare. Dumping practices Bus builders VDL and Van Hool suspect Chinese battery giant and bus and […]

Underground storage solution for 75% of Belgian CO2 emissions?

October 27, 2017

Without drastic measures Belgium will never achieve the CO2 targets set by the Paris agreement. Kris Welkenhuysen, researcher at the Belgian Geological Service, thinks in theory two thirds of industrial CO2 emission could be stored underground in the former coal mines or under the North Sea. Welkenhuysen studied the matter for his PhD thesis in […]

100.000 Belgian cars still drive around with cheating software

October 26, 2017

More than two years after the dieselgate scandal, around 100,000 cars are still circulating in Belgium with the so-called cheating software. According to D’Ieteren, importer of the Volkswagen group’s brands, some 1 million letters have already been sent out. However, 30% of customers have not yet had an update carried out. This update is completely […]

Car makers are freezing investments in UK due to Brexit

October 26, 2017

Toyota and Opel/Vauxhall are freezing their investments in the United Kingdom due to the uncertainty of what Brexit might bring. Toyota wants to be certain that a free EU market access without customs levies is maintained before investing in its UK plant. Toyota is uncertain about its future in the UK. In March, the Japanese […]

Nissan wants to be Belgium’s no 1 in EV

October 26, 2017

With the launch of its new Leaf 2, Nissan wants to remain the world’s number one in electric vehicle. In Belgium, it hopes that the new model will oversell the Tesla Model S that is currently the country’s best selling EV. Nissan has been playing in the electric vehicle segment for much longer than its […]

‘Intelligent cars’ on stage at Tokyo Motor Show

October 26, 2017

Cars that are less polluting, more comfortable, but especially more ‘intelligent’ are put on the stage at the 45th Tokyo Motor Show that is opening its doors to the public on Friday. Japanese car manufacturers use their local platform to show some remarkable prototypes like cars that can recognize emotions of their drivers or self-balancing […]

NEVS to build electric taxis for Chinese DiDi

October 26, 2017

Swedish NEVS, the former Saab which is owned by a number of Chinese investment companies, is going to build electric taxis for taxi hailing and private car sharing service DiDi, the ‘Chinese Uber’. An agreement was signed on Wednesday in Trollhättan (Sweden) for developing a specific electric vehicle, capable of autonomous driving in the future. NEVS, […]

Automatic gearbox will make manuals redundant

October 25, 2017

The automatic gearbox gains in popularity. Seven years ago only 11,5 per cent of the cars sold in Belgium had an automatic gearbox. Today a third of the cars sold in 2017 are ‘automatics’ while experts predict the disappearance of the manual gearbox. “In family cars the manual gearbox remains the most popular”, says Maarten […]