Flemish start-up offers empty space in trucks for bulky goods

December 13, 2017

Vengo, a young start-up company in Hasselt (Belgium), has installed an online platform to organize the transport of bulky goods, exploiting the empty space in trucks and vans. “As much as 80% of all trucks on the road are not completely loaded. Twenty percent is even empty. We therefore decided to provide a transport service […]

Weatherman: ‘one SMS from the boss and traffic jam shrinks’

December 13, 2017

With snow bringing the country to a standstill beginning this week, KMI weatherman David Dehenauw launches a simple idea: “One SMS of the boss to work at home today and the traffic jams will shrink visibly”. Minister of Work Kris Peeters (CD&V) sees the point. Severe weather conditions His proposal is that when severe weather […]

PepsiCo orders 100 Tesla e-trucks

December 13, 2017

PepsiCo has placed an order for 100 electrical Tesla trucks. The company plans to use them for the transport of snacks and beverages from production sites to distribution centers and retailers in a range of about 800 kilometers, the range Musk promises the semi-trucks can offer on one charge. 10.000 vehicle fleet The 100 Tesla […]

Belgians drove new record of 84,3 billion km by car

December 12, 2017

All Belgians together drove a new record of 84.3 billion km in 2016, being 0,4% more than the year before. This is shown by a new study of the federal mobility administration. 4% more than the Dutch The new record is on average 4% more than the Dutch do, 6% more than the French and […]

France considers 80 kph on national and secondary roads

December 12, 2017

France’s Prime Minister Edouard Philippe is determined to do something about the numerous fatal accidents on the French roads. On Monday he declared to be prepared to bring back speed limits to 80 km/hour on certain bidirectional national and regional roads. They seem to be the most dangerous and the most fatal: two third of […]

First hydrogen bicycles on French roads

December 12, 2017

On Monday the first hydrogen bicycles were launched in Sint-Lô (Normandy, France). A world premiere, according to Christophe Bruniau, sales manager at Pragma Industries. The bicycle company will provide the region with 20 bicycles, 40 more will follow for other regions in France. The company estimates to sell several hundreds of bikes in 2018. Fuel […]

Chinese BYD to build electric cars, trucks and buses in Morocco

December 11, 2017

Chinese electric car manufacturer BYD (Build Your Dream) has signed a protocol agreement with the Moroccan government to build an electric car factory on the outskirts of Tanger. Later on, three more factories are planned for building batteries, electric heavy trucks and buses and trains. With a huge Chinese home market, BYD is by far […]

Mayors want also a roof on Brussels ring road

December 08, 2017

8 mayors have joined thoughts and forces to ask for a roof or a tunnel on part of the Brussels ring road (approximately 15 km). It’s the part that crosses the “Zoniënwoud” wood, declared world heritage by Unesco and in danger because of the pollution of thousands of cars per day crossing right through it. […]

Wallonia becoming ‘de facto’ Low Emission Zone from 2020 on

December 08, 2017

The Walloon government (MR-cdH) has agreed on the legal framework to start phasing out polluting cars from 2020 on, becoming a ‘de facto’ Low Emission Zone (LEZ) on the entire territory. Every car, van or minibus entering will need to have an eco-sticker on the windscreen, comparable with the Crit’Air system in France. Like Antwerp, […]

EU agrees on stringent homologation: fines up to 30.000 euro per car

December 07, 2017

On Thursday negotiators from the European Parliament and the European Council of 28 have reached an agreement on sharpening the car homologation procedures in the future to avoid another dieselgate scandal. Car makers can be fined up to 30.000 euro per car, if caught cheating with emission standards. The text is yet to be voted […]

Dieselgate: senior exec Volkswagen US jailed for seven years

December 07, 2017

A Detroit judge has convicted ex Volkswagen US executive Oliver Schmidt to seven years imprisonment and a fine of 400.000 dollar for his role in the dieselgate affaire. Schmidt, who pleaded guilty to get a lesser punishment, was in charge of VW’s environmental and engineering office in Michigan in 2014-2015. Cheating software The court found […]

Nissan to launch robot-taxi service by 2020

December 06, 2017

Japanese car maker Nissan is counting on launching its commercial robot-taxi service ‘Easy Ride’ together with local partner DeNa by 2020, year of the Olympic Games in Tokyo. That was announced on Tuesday. To AFP news agency a Nissan spokesman declared that “up to 2020 it will be launched first in limited numbers in a […]

Mercedes engineers hire Tesla X to ‘dismantle’

December 06, 2017

It’s not uncommon in the car industry that one buys a competitors’ new product to take it apart and study it. But hiring a Tesla X to test it to the extreme, dismantle and reassemble it as Mercedes-Benz engineers apparently did in Bavaria, is rather exceptional. According to German magazine Der Spiegel, the Tesla X, […]

Transport now biggest polluter in US

December 06, 2017

Power stations are no longer the biggest source of CO2-pollution in the United States. They have been overtaken by the sector of transport. It’s the first time in 40 years that the production of energy isn’t the biggest CO2-polluter any more. Power stations aren’t the biggest CO2-source any more  in the United States. The whole […]

Brussels Motor Show opens up for new mobility

December 06, 2017

The 96th Brussels Motor Show, to be held from 12 to 21 January 2018, opens up for the first time for new mobility forms going from micro-mobility devices to car sharing with a complete palace dedicated to “#WeAreMobility” during the last 4 days of the show. All major car brands will be present in Brussels, […]

“Brussels is slowly getting stuck.”

December 04, 2017

Former CEO of Brussels public transport company STIB/MIVB Alain Flausch leaves the Union of Public Transport which he has lead for 6 years. He is disappointed about Brussels and Belgium as a whole: “We should take other cities as an example,” he claims. In his 6 years as Secretary-General of the international Union of Public […]

Electric car still more expensive, but gap is closing

December 04, 2017

Dutch driver association ANWB figured out how much an electric car is still more expensive than a petrol car, approximately 10% they claim. This price difference is practically the same in Belgium, but the gap is closing. ANWB took the average cost of 13 electrical cars (middle class) and compared them to 13 petrol cars. […]

Philippe Dehennin (FEBIAC): ‘the friendly neighbouring dealer is not dead yet’

November 30, 2017

Since June 2017 the Belgian Association of Car Manufacturers and Importers (Febiac) has a new president. Phillippe Dehennin left BMW in 2016 and is now the head of what is commonly known as the “car lobby” in Belgium. He is convinced mobility will evolve to multi-modal and inter-modal, but that doesn’t mean that the car […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

‘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 […]

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 […]

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 […]

‘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’ […]

30-zone: number of accidents increased by 21%

November 15, 2017

In two years, the number of accidents in 30-zones has increased by 21%. Admittedly the number of zones has increase too, but the major part of drivers is still driving too fast. The Walloon government is working on installing “intelligent 30-zone” active only during school periods. 283 is the number of accidents recorded in 30-zones […]

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 […]

EU Parliament wants advanced safety systems in every new car

November 15, 2017

All new cars should have advanced driving assistance systems (ADAS) that can detect pedestrians, brake automatically in an emergency, warn for lane departure and adapt the speed of the car. This is the general idea of a resolution voted by the European Parliament on Tuesday to half the number of casualties in traffic by 2020. […]

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 […]

‘Hydrogen could represent one fifth of total energy in 2050’

November 14, 2017

According to a McKinsey study, if necessary investments are realized, hydrogen could represent one fifth of the total of energy consumed in 2050. The Hydrogen Council considers this fuel could power 10 to 15 million cars as soon as 2030. “Deployed on a big scale, hydrogen could represent one fifth of the total of energy […]

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 […]

‘Three euro per day to enter Brussels in peak hours’

November 10, 2017

According to Brussels Défi MP Marc Loewenstein, the new low emission zone (LEZ) could give the opportunity to put up an entering toll of 3 euro per day in Brussels. This congestion charge could lead up to a traffic decrease of 11%. “Let’s just stop hesitating and let’s take opportunities”, says Marc Loewenstein. Loewenstein, who […]

14 wild boars killed at one time on Limburg highway

November 10, 2017

Thursday morning, on the E314 in Genk, fourteen wild boars were hit by a truck and a car. Fortunately, the drivers were not injured. The animals didn’t survive the accident. The Belgian province of Limburg is suffering from a plague of wild boars. The animals are also appearing increasingly on roads and motorways, resulting in […]

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 […]

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 […]

‘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 […]

Waymo sends out autonomous taxis without driver

November 08, 2017

Waymo, a subsidiary company of Alphabet (the mother company of Google), is going to drive his autonomous cars on Phoenix roads without a human driver to intervene. This was announced by the company’s CEO on Tuesday. It is the next step in autonomous driving vehicles. Waymo is planning to start a taxi service in Phoenix […]

‘Plug-in charge’ to prevent occupying charging points to long

November 08, 2017

Electric cars tend to stand two thirds of the parking time at a public charger without actually charging batteries. This learns a spot-check by NewMotion, the Dutch charging station network company that was taken over by Shell last month. A fee of 0,22 euro per hour seems to be a solution. Juice-point sticking The average […]

Red diesel fraud increasing by 78% in Belgium

November 07, 2017

Driving on domestic heating fuel commonly known as ‘red diesel’ is forbidden in Belgium and can cost a € 500 fine. Infractions have increased by 78% compared to last year with 812 drivers convicted and fined in the first 8 months of 2017. From January 1st to August 31st, 812 drivers were controlled and fined […]

More than 1 million insurance policies needed to cover 779 severe accidents

November 07, 2017

Last year, there were 779 road accidents in Belgium with a damage cost of more than 125.000 euro. The average cost of these claims was 424.647 euro. In order to pay only the major accidents claims, more than one million insured persons are needed, as evidenced by recent figures from Assuralia, the professional association of […]

850 shared bicycles in Brussels and counting

November 06, 2017

Since September 2017, numerous shared bicycles from different renting companies such as GoBee Bike, OBike or Billy Bike are appearing all around Brussels., totaling around 850 today. These “free-floating” bicycles can be picked-up and dropped-off wherever the user desires it, without the need of a station. In Brussels, the concept of the shared bike is […]

Bike hunters to retrieve stolen bikes as police proves powerless

November 03, 2017

Dutch bicycle maker VanMoof developed a tracking system for stolen bikes and sends out its own ‘bike hunters’ to retrieve them. A service that is proposed at an annual fee of 100 euro. In Belgium every quarter of an hour a bicycle is stolen. Police is powerless with a result that only 4 % of […]

Mobile gas power plant at sea to supplement wind farms

November 02, 2017

Dutch start up Circular Energy from Delft has worked out a concept to ‘harvest’ gas at sea on mobile gas power plants and produce electricity without CO2 emissions. The gas power plant can compliment wind farms when there is no wind and use their power lines to supply to the grid on the shore. A […]

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 […]

Smart car suffers from ignorant driver

November 02, 2017

Modern cars are loaded with safety systems, but most drivers hardly ever use them. They simply don’t know what smart gadgets their car is equipped with. This was one of the remarkable results of the study carried out by the Connecting Mobility, a project office of the Dutch Ministry of Infrastructure and Water Management together […]

Brussels works on dynamic speed limits on main axes

October 31, 2017

The Commission on Infrastructure of the Brussels’ parliament has agreed in the forming of a work group that has to study the implementation of dynamic road signs and speed limits on the main entry axes and the Ring. These dynamic road signs will adapt the speed limits to the traffic and weather conditions. The implementation […]

Wallonia: mobility plan to reduce car usage from 83 to 60%

October 31, 2017

The Belgian Walloon regional government has agreed last week on an ambitious plan to reduce car usage from 83 to 60% by 2030. Its Transport, Mobility and Road Safety Minister Carlo di Antonio (cdH) wants 4 out of 5 car trips in the future to be with at least two passengers and boost public transport […]

Belgian rail: green light for 3,2 billion euro investment plan

October 30, 2017

The Executive Board approved the new 2018-2022 investments plan for Belgian railways SNCB/NMBS. It foresees 3,2 billion euro for commuter transport, train stations and equipment management and maintenance. On Friday, the SNCB/NMBS executive board approved the new power delegation and sub-delegation allowing the CEO Sophie Dutordoir to appoint her own general managers and department heads. […]

Open Vld wants kilometre tax for lorries in Antwerp

October 30, 2017

Philippe De Backer, State Secretary for Social Fraud, but also leader of the Open VLD faction in the Antwerp city council, calls for a kilometre tax for lorries in the inner city of Antwerp for certain critical time slots. Unless they pay a substantial fee. “Circulation plans sound good, but the solution is just there […]