CMB: Belgium’s first hydrogen ferry to avoid Antwerp traffic jams

November 30, 2017

Belgian shipping group CMB will use a hydrogen ship, the ‘Hydroville’, to transport people and avoid traffic jams in Antwerp. It is considering hydrogen as an alternative fuel to propel his  entire fleet of (big) ships (in total 96 vessels). Green and clean The Hydroville has been baptised on Wednesday 29th and will cruise to […]

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 […]

Antwerp province maps out good and safe bicycle paths

November 29, 2017

Citizens of the province of Antwerp, Belgium’s forerunner on cycling, are getting the scoop – a European first – of an online data bank mapping out the best quality bicycle paths and showing were most accidents happen. Places to be careful or to avoid, thus. Fietsbarometer How good are the bicycle paths? How many cyclists […]

5G-Tech campus opens for developers in Hasselt

November 29, 2017

Tech company site Corda Campus Hasselt, together with Swedish telecom specialist Ericsson, are going to make Belgium’s first 5G telecom network available in the first quarter of 2018 on its campus to developers and companies who want to build on this technology. 5G is considered indispensable to connect autonomous driving cars for instance. Faster and […]

Wallonia: anti-pollution sticker for every car in 2020

November 29, 2017

Walloon Minister for Environment Carlo Di Antonio (cdH) is working on a law proposal to allow every city and municipality in the region to install Low Emission Zones (LEZ) and enforce car drivers to have a sticker on every car, indicating the pollution-level. By 2023 Wallonia wants to forbid all cars – diesel and petrol […]

Airbus, Siemens and Rolls-Royce to build hybrid plane

November 29, 2017

European airplane builder Airbus, German technology concern Siemens and British airplane engine builder Rolls-Royce are teaming up to build a hybrid demonstration plane that will make its first test flight in 2020. This is what the three concerns announced on Tuesday at a press conference in London. One electric motor to start For the test […]

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 […]

Monopoly to top Brussels public transport’s merchandising

November 28, 2017

The Brussels public transport company STIB/MIVB has developed a who set of merchandising to strengthen the company’s image, with on top of it a personalized version of the popular Monopoly board game. Internal task force “We contacted the maker of the board game Hasbro and worked internally with a small group of employees who love […]

Alcohol test: one Belgian out of five checked each year

November 28, 2017

In Belgium one of five drivers or 19,9% is checked each year for alcohol. The risk of getting caught has tripled the last ten years. In 2006 only 7,5% of Belgians was checked. These are some of the figures coming from the annual statistic report of the Belgian road safety institute Vias on controls and […]

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 […]

New laser technique to detect fine particulates in blood

November 28, 2017

Belgian researchers of the UHasselt and KU Leuven universities have developed a new laser technique to accurately detect fine carbon particulates in the human body. Most dangerous are the particulates PM 2.5 (smaller than 2.5 µm) caused mostly by industry and traffic. Recent studies showed that worldwide more than 4,2 million people die prematurely due […]

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 […]

Skoda’s think tank DigiLab: working on apps rather than cars

November 27, 2017

In its new DigiLab in Prague, Czech car maker Skoda is working on new ideas for the car driver of the future. And that means rather working on apps than on new cars, in practice. Like and app to drive your sick mother to the hospital, for instance. Never in the front row Being part […]

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 […]

Teleworking and part-time jobs mask real traffic increase

November 27, 2017

Rush hours are extending more and more in Belgium with traffic jams almost the whole day long. But it would even be worse without increasing numbers of people working at home or part-time. Tuesday and Thursday are the days everybody is at work. On November 21th a new record of traffic jams was set with […]

‘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 […]

Belgian finishes Route 66 by solar bicycle

November 27, 2017

Belgian telecom engineer Michel Voros (53) accomplished his dream: doing the whole 3.940 km long Route 66 in the United States by ‘solar bike’, a self build bike with a trailer equipped with six solar panels. Voros started in Chicago (Illinois) and finished last week in Santa Monica (California) after 49 days, doing some 3.940 […]

Dutch plug-in car fleet crumbles

November 24, 2017

More and more second had plug-in hybrids are leaving the Netherlands because demand has dropped to nearly zero nationally. By abolishing the fiscal benefits, the government made the plug-in hybrids to expensive for the average Dutch driver, says the knowledge centre for the automotive branch Aumacon. According to figures of the Ministery of Infrastructure and […]

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 […]

Antwerp LEZ fines: Dutch and French will have to pay

November 24, 2017

Dutch and French driving a polluting car will be fined 123 euro when entering the Antwerp Low Emission Zone (LEZ) in the near future. ANPR cameras are registering violators, but until now the city of Anwerp didn’t have access to the personal data to identify them. This will change before the end of this year. […]

Pickup sales doubles in Belgium

November 24, 2017

Last year sales of heavy pickup trucks, combining a passenger cab with an open loading platform doubled compared to 2009 to 5.700. This year almost as much pickups were sold in ten months time, according to figures of sector federation FEBIAC. Huge fiscal benefits – that are questioned more and more – are at the […]

Holland and Belgium to invest in cross-border charging and hydrogen stations

November 24, 2017

The Netherlands, Flanders and the Brussels Region have started together the BENEFEC project to realize cross-border infrastructures for charging electric cars, hydrogen stations and LNG-GNG gas stations. This was unveiled on Thursday by the Flemish environmental department (Vlaams Departement Omgeving) that coordinates the project. The BENEFIC Action aims at supporting the roll-out for the cross-border […]

Norway drops plans for ‘Tesla-tax’

November 24, 2017

Norway drops the so called ‘Tesla-tax’, the proposition to abolish the generous exemptions for electric cars if they weight more than two tons. The measure, that would become active in January 2018 was scrapped after a budgetary agreement between the right wing government and its centre-right allies. Tesla X more expensive The fiercely contested proposal […]

Dark side of the electric car: its life cycle

November 23, 2017

Electric cars are regarded ‘greener’ and and alternative for the combustion engine. But are they really? When studying the whole life cycle, the electric car often reveals its dark side according to an article in the Financial Times, published also in Trends. With its petrol engine, a simple Mitsubishi Space Star doesn’t resemble a futuristic […]

SNCF scraps all car-trains except one

November 23, 2017

French railroad company SNCF is scrapping its car-trains on all lines, except the ones serving the Mediterranean. The decision was taken because the service is heavily loosing money, some 10 million euro per year. Popular in the seventies The trains, transporting private cars over the rails over large distances, was quite popular in the past, […]

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 […]

Flemish government gives ‘greener’ transport sector financial leg-up

November 23, 2017

Transport companies willing to invest in sustainable technology and road safety can get a 100.000 euro financial leg-up from the Flemish government from this week on. Condition is that the investment goes further than the strict legally obligation. SCR-systems The subsidies – up to 80% of the investment and limited to 100.000 every three years […]

High speed Intercity Direct train on time for first time in years

November 22, 2017

For the first time in years the high speed Intercity Direct train connecting Amsterdam, Schiphol, Rotterdam and Breda is riding on time. “It costed blood, sweat and tears from our people and the people at rail management company ProRail to improve performance”, says Dutch railways CEO Roger van Boxtel in an interview with Algemeen Dagblad. […]

300 White-collar jobs at risk at De Lijn

November 22, 2017

The Flemish public bus and tram transport company De Lijn is going to cut 285 to 295 out of 1.700 white-collar jobs in the next three years. De Lijn says it will be by natural gradual dismissal by not replacing people going into (early) retirement. Restructuring The job cut is part of the restructuring of […]

Brussels: more employees willing to hop on the bike

November 22, 2017

Having the opportunity to test a bike of your choice first, shows to be a good way to get employees to hop on the bike permanently. 87% of participants to the Brussels’ ‘Bike Project’ are using a bicycle to commute to work on a daily base since. For the new edition of the ‘The Bike […]

Record traffic jams in Belgium and Netherlands

November 22, 2017

Tuesday morning both Belgium and the Netherlands saw record traffic jams, mainly due to bad autumn weather and accidents. November is the busiest month in both countries, but observers see a structural increase of traffic jams year after year. We’re losing half more time in traffic jams than 5 years ago. Records in both countries […]

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 […]

Eurotunnel changes name into Getlink

November 21, 2017

The Eurotunnel Group, exploiting the tunnel under the Channel, has renamed itself into ‘Getlink’ to underline its intention “to enter a new era of mobility infrastructure”. On the Euronext stock exchanges of Paris and London, the group keeps its GET code. 20 million passengers The group transports each year some 20 million passengers, 1,6 million […]

Paris adopts 500-measures climate plan

November 21, 2017

The French capital of Paris has adopted on Monday its climate plan for 2024. The plan, counting some 500 different measures to be issued, was voted by all political parties of the city government and will be presented to the Paris Council beginning 2018. The plan is to be submitted for eventual amending to 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 […]

Weyts to allow ‘supertrucks’ on all Flemish highways

November 21, 2017

‘Supertrucks’ with almost double capacity of a normal heavy freight lorry will be allowed on all Flemish highways and a so called ‘basic road network’ from January 1st 2018 on. A decree proposal of Minister of Mobility Ben Weyts (N-VA) is examined by the State’s Council at the moment. Two supertrucks already A first pilot […]

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 […]

London prepares for fully autonomous cars by 2021

November 20, 2017

London is preparing for the first level 4 autonomous cars – where human driver attention is no longer needed – on British roads by 2021. This is one of the elements of the financial budget that will be presented on Wednesday by the Chancellor of the Exchequer (Minister of Finance) Philip Hammond. The budget foresees […]

Brussels citizens panel votes resolution on future mobility

November 20, 2017

On Sunday the ‘citizens panel on mobility’, installed by the Brussels’ regional government, has voted a resolution on future mobility, that it hopes will be the basis for the government’s ‘Good Move’ mobility plan to be laid out next year. The members of the citizens panel have been drawn initially by lot out of 8.000 […]

‘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 […]

Belgian government’s ‘cash-for-car’ bogged down

November 17, 2017

The new ‘cash for car’ regulation that the Belgian government has developed as an alternative to so called ‘salary cars’ is not yet in place. The Council of State has serious reservations about the proposal. In the proposal now on the table, workers can trade in their company car for more net pay (‘cash for […]

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 […]

First highly secured lorry parking opened in Flanders

November 17, 2017

The first highly secured lorry parking has been opened in the East Flanders Kalken. The initiative fits within Europe’s fight against cargo theft and human trafficking. Drivers entering and exiting the permanently camera-controlled domain are subject to an identity check. There is also a number plate verification system. This security is in accordance with the […]

Tesla unwraps 600 km range Semi e-truck

November 17, 2017

After revolutionizing the electric car, Tesla’s flamboyant CEO Elon Musk wants to do the same for heavy transport lorries. Musk himself drove a prototype of the ‘Semi’ on stage in Hawthorn, California, on Thursday, a fully electric 40 ton lorry with a range of 600 to 800 kilometres. Tesla’s Semi is a futuristic looking lorry […]

Touring wants ‘rescue track’ for emergency services

November 16, 2017

Many motorists still don’t know how to react when they suddenly see an ambulance with blaring sirens suddenly appear in their rear-view mirror. Mobility organization Touring therefore proposes to modify the Belgian road code. For the new proposal Touring has been inspired by the ‘Rettungsgasse’, a principle that is obliged for some time in countries […]

‘Middle-lane driver public enemy no 1’

November 16, 2017

Guess what is the biggest annoyance of motorists on the highway? Indeed: the persisting middle-lane driver. This is shown by a poll by Vias Institute, the Belgian road safety institute. Staying in the middle lane is annoying, but is it also dangerous. “Other road users are forced to pass by left,’ says Stef Willems, Vias’ […]

Tesla’s ‘e-truck’ already faces competition

November 16, 2017

American electric car maker Tesla is to present its long awaited first ‘e-truck’ on Thursday evening with a live video broadcast. The e-truck “will blow your mind clear out of your skull and into an alternate dimension.”, according to Elon Musk on Twitter. But it won’t be the first. There already is competition. “It can […]

Pope prefers his Popemobile over Lamborghini Huracan

November 16, 2017

Italian sports car maker Lamborghini offered Pope Francis a snow white Lamborgini Huracan. But you won’t see the Pope racing around the Vatican with it. He’ll stick with his Popemobile and puts up the Lambo – like his Harley Davidson bike before – for auction at Sotheby’s for charity. Blessed and signed Being blessed and […]

More than half of Belgians victim of road rage

November 16, 2017

More than half (57%) of Belgians claim to have been the victims of aggressive behaviour in traffic last year. This is apparent from a poll by Belgian Vias Institute for road safety, National Road Safety Day On “National Road Safety Day” Vias institute, the former BIVV/IBSR, surveyed the Belgian population about aggressively and irritating behaviour […]

’30 kph in cities, 90 on motorways to improve air quality’

November 15, 2017

Traffic experts see only one solution for the problem of the ever worsening air quality in Flanders: the speed limits must be reduced. Minister of Transport Ben Weyts (N-VA) is not convinced. “These results are worrying,” says bio-engineer Roeland Samson (University of Antwerp) about the air pollution in East Flanders and by extension throughout Flanders. […]

300 fines a day for using smartphone while driving

November 15, 2017

According to figures given by Jan Jambon (N-VA), Minister of the Interior, in 2016, a total of 108.500 fines were issued for using smartphones at the steering wheel, which means 300 infringements a day. MP Jef Van Den Bergh (CD&V) asked for these figures. Also cyclists are involved Of the total number of fines issued, more […]

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 […]