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 […]

GM loses 5,4 billion dollar on selling Opel to PSA

October 25, 2017

The sale of Opel to French car group PSA pushed General Motors into losing 5,4 billion dollar. Without the write off of the costs related to this sale, the profit in the third quarter would have been 1,32 dollar per share. Which is more than the analysts expected. When General Motors sold Opel to PSA […]

Delphi buys autonomous driving specialist nuTonomy

October 25, 2017

Ex-GM daughter and one of the worlds major automotive suppliers Delphi buys the nuTonomy start-up created by MIT researchers for 400 million dollars. nuTonomy will reinforce Delphi as the most important provider of autonomous technologies. On Tuesday, Delphi announced that it would acquire the American start-up nuTonomy. The company’s 100 employees, of which 70 are […]

Katoen Natie and BASF order set of autonomous VDL lorries

October 25, 2017

VDL, Holland’s biggest bus, car and lorry builder, announced on Tuesday it received new orders from Belgian logistics group Katoen Natie and German chemical giant BASF for 18 fully autonomous driving lorries. The Antwerp based Katoen Natie will use the 11 new lorries they ordered on its Singapore petrochemical site, where they have already one […]

Ryanair pilots ready to go on strike

October 24, 2017

In a document sent to all Ryanair pilots, the European Employee Representative Council explains that they “have to consider the possibility to go on strike to ensure being heard on the negotiation table”. Ryanair pilots want to push the company’s management to offer the same benefits as other airlines. Last week, Madrid and London-Stansted Ryanair […]

How China is killing the e-bike competition

October 24, 2017

The European Commission opened on Friday an anti-dumping investigation on Chinese electric bicycles, after complaints from EU bike producers. “These Chinese bikes are sold at ridiculously low prices and don’t respect the same quality standards as bicycles built in Europe.” Europe’s electric bicycles market is booming in terms of sales and production. In 2016, 1,1 […]

More EU inspections on German ‘car makers cartel’

October 24, 2017

Three days after invading the BMW headquarters in Munich, several other German car makers had a visit on Monday of EU inspectors, accompanied by inspectors of the German cartel authority, in the alleged ‘cartel investigation’. The EU press release did not specify which ones, but sources indicate this time Daimler and Volkswagen were targeted. Big […]

Tesla to build cars in China

October 23, 2017

According to the Wall Street Journal there is an agreement between American electric car maker Tesla and the Chinese government to start the construction of a Tesla plant in the free-trade zone in Shanghai. China is an important market for Tesla. It counts for 15 per cent of Tesla’s turn-over with an expected growth of […]

Dutch develop sensor to keep fine particulates out off car interior

October 23, 2017

Dutch company Prodrive Technologies introduces a sensor that is capable of detecting PM2.5 particulates entering the car interior and shutting of air intake or filtering it out by the air con. The sensor is developed for a not yet disclosed German car maker, who intends to launch the product in 2018. Prodrive Technologies already developed […]

SeaBubbles hovering boat taxi quits Paris for Lake Geneva

October 23, 2017

After numerous discussions with Paris city authorities, SeaBubbles won’t introduce it’s autonomous electric hovering boat taxis on the Seine but on the Geneva Lake instead. SeaBubbles is a new type of electric hydrofoil boats created by two French boaters that could revolutionize public transport. In only eighteen months, ex hydrofoil skipper Alain Thébault and windsurfing […]