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SOLO Self-Driving

I’ll be the first to admit that I am not the biggest mall guy, but I mistakenly ended up at the mall last weekend. It’s too long of a story to tell here, but it involves ice cream. The best thing about the mall was leaving and running into a couple SOLOs.

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ElectraMeccanica has partnered with autonomous technology company Faction Technology, Inc. to offer ElectraMeccanica’s SOLO EVs to a pilot program where Faction’s autonomous platform can be tested for food deliveries. ElectraMeccanica will offer 24 of its SOLO EVs over the course of 2022 for Faction to test out the self-driving technology. We look forward to going back to the mall to check these out.  

Save the Manuals

I currently drive a vehicle with a manual transmission, so this next bit of news is amazing.   Toyota has applied for a patent that allows the company to simulate a manual transmission for EVs. I know, I know, it’s only simulated, but Toyota says it will feel very similar to driving an ICE vehicle. This will allow Toyota to blend the new tech of EVs with the old-school feel of manual transmissions.

In more news, Toyota has given the world another sneak peek of the “possible” Lexus electric sports vehicles. Toyota boasts that the vehicle has 430 miles of range, but doesn’t give much more info than that. I’ll take the coupe in a manual, please.  

Benz Performance

I ran into a Mercedes AMG GT Black Series the other day, and Mercedes is really putting out some performance vehicles. In the EV world, Mercedes announced the AMG EQE, a high-performance EV modeled after the company’s electric E-class sedan.

The AMG EQE with the Dynamic Plus package will launch from 0-60 mph in 3.2 seconds and can reach a top speed of 149 mph. The EQE with the Dynamic Plus will have dual motors and produce 677 horsepower and 738 pound-feet of torque. Throw a big wing on it like the GT Black Series and I’m sold. I’m just joking…  maybe.    

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Source: Canalys

A Look Back at 2021

2021 was a good year … for EVs. Nearly 6.5 million EVs were sold worldwide in 2021, up 109% from 2020 and accounting for 9% of all passenger vehicle sales. Tesla is leading the way with 14% of all EV sales. The leading country with over 3.2 million EVs sold? China, of course. Can’t wait to see what 2022 brings. Can the US close the gap on China? 

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