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Top Five: Global EV Platforms



The common global platform strategy is nothing new. Carmakers have sought to cut development and construction costs by using the same kit of parts to build a range of different models for decades. However, with the EV revolution comes the chance to further hone development.

And that’s good news too – with battery prices still representing a significant chunk of the vehicle cost, finding other ways to trim expense is essential to keep EVs affordable and appealing to end consumers.

For our latest Top Five, we have been taking a look at five common global electric vehicle platforms from some of the world’s biggest carmakers. Each offers slightly different approaches, with differing takes on battery capacity requirements, motor provision and level of commonality, but one thing they do agree on is the significant up-front cost: the five profiled here represent an investment of at least $160bn – yes, billion dollars!

#1 – Volkswagen Group MEB


Production locations: Zwickau, Germany (2019); Shanghai, China (2020); Chattanooga, TN, US (2022)
Investment: Over €30bn by 2023
Example models: Volkswagen ID3 and ID4; Seat El Born; Audi Q4 e-tron; Skoda Enyaq
Estimated volume: 15 million vehicles by 2025
Battery sizes: 52kWh to 77kWh
Range: 205 to 342 miles
Charging capacity: 125kW
EMotor: Rear-drive first; twin motor all-wheel drive to follow

VW’s answer to the transition from ICE to EV is its MEB platform. Set to underpin a host of models from the Group’s brands, MEB is short for Modularer E-Antriebs-Baukasten, which translates from German into English as modular electric drive matrix.

The platform has received huge investment from the VW Group, with the first car – the VW ID3 – now beginning to make its way from production and into dealers. In addition to being used across the Group, the platform is up for sale, with Ford signing on for 600,000 to underpin a European-market SUV, due to launch in 2023.

#2 – GM Global EV Platform


Production locations: Detroit-Hamtramck, MI, USA (2021); Multiple locations in China
Investment: $20bn by 2025
Example models: Cruise Origin; Cadillac Lyriq; GMC Hummer
Estimated volume: 1 million per year in the US and China by 2025
Battery sizes: 50kWh to 200 kWh
Range: Up to 400 miles
Charging capacity: Up to 200kW
EMotor: front, real and all-wheel drive versions possible

GM just beat coronavirus to the punch by unveiling its new global EV platform on March 4 at a special media day, held in its Design Dome in Warren, MI.

Presented by GM CEO Mary Barra, the GM Global EV platform features high levels of configurability built in, thanks to the firm’s LG Chem-sourced pouch cell Ultium batteries that allow for more flexibility of formats. The cells also drive down cost, with GM claiming less than $100/kWh.

Its EVs will use GM-developed motors, feature DC fast charging capability, and Super Cruise ADAS as standard. The first drivable vehicle using the platform will be the Cadillac Lyriq SUV, and – like VW – GM has announced that Honda will design and built two EVs using GM’s EV platform.

#3 – Toyota Electric New Generation Architecture e-TNGA

Production locations: Tianjin, China with FAW
Investment: $13bn by 2030
Example models: Toyota C-HR; Lexus UX300e
Estimated volume: 1 million per year by 2025
Battery sizes: Three available, 54.3kWh confirmed with up to 100kWh coming
Range: 186 to 372 miles
Charging capacity: 50kW announced so far
EMotor: front, rear and all-wheel drive versions possible

Toyota originally planned to sell one million zero-emission vehicles per year by 2030. However, it revised that in 2019 to achieve EV and FCEV sales volumes of a millions units by 2025, focusing first on the Chinese market and rolling out from there. Key to this is the TNGA architecture that rolled out under the latest Prius, and is fully electrified first in the Toyota C-HR, first shown at the 2019 Shanghai Motor Show.

Designed in collaboration with Subaru, the e-TNGA EV Platform is flexible enough to accommodate a host of different vehicle types and drive options. These include three different wheelbase lengths, three different battery sizes and three different power outputs. Toyota has stated that it will offer an initial 10 models globally by 2025.

#4 – Renault-Nissan-Mitsubishi CMF-EV


Production locations: Flins, France; Smyrna, TN, US; Sunderland, UK; Oppama, Japan
Investment: Over $10bn by 2022
Example models: Renault Morphoz concept (above); Nissan Ariya concept
Estimated volume: 1 million per year by 2022
Battery sizes: 40kWh to 90kWh
Range: 249 miles to 435 miles
Charging capacity: TBC
EMotor: front and all-wheel drive versions possible

The Common Module Family platform is already in use under ICE-powered cars like the Nissan Qashqai and Renault Megane. However, the EV version is on the way this year. First hinted at by the 2019 Tokyo Motor Show arrival of the Nissan Ariya, a concept built on an undisclosed EV platform with a twin-motor drivetrain, the Renault Morphoz concept officially debuted the CMF-EV architecture earlier in 2020.

The concept was intended to debut at the Geneva Motor Show, but got an online release instead as the event was cancelled due to Covid-19. The Morphoz is a shape-shifting showcase designed to highlight the flexibility of the platform. At least 12 models built on CMF-EV are on their way in the next two years.

#5 – Hyundai-Kia E-GMP Global EV Platform

Production locations: Multiple undisclosed
Investment: $87bn by 2025
Example models: Hyundai 45 and Prophecy; Kia Imagine
Estimated volume: Hyundai 560,000 per year by 2025; Kia 500,000 per year by 2026
Battery sizes: 58kWh to 73kWh
Range: 218 to 311 miles
Charging capacity: Up to 200kW
EMotor: front and all-wheel drive versions possible

Hyundai-Kia is taking EVs extremely seriously, announcing a huge $87bn will be spent by 2025 – including Hyundai’s plan to invest $52bn in future technologies through 2025, while Kia will invest $25bn in electrification and future mobility technologies, aiming for eco-friendly vehicles to comprise 25 per cent of its total sales by 2025.

Right now, the firms have a joint Eco-Car platform that underpins the Hyundai Ioniq and Next, and the Kia Niro, while the Hyundai Kona and Kia Soul Electric use the small-car platform. However, the firms will move to the E-GMP, beginning with the Hyundai 45 later this year, while the next-generation Ioniq is due in 2021, previewed by the Prophecy concept. A Kia sedan, previewed by the Imagine concept, is due in 2021 too. Unlike some rivals, E-GMP uses Porsche Taycan-esque 800V technology.

In addition to going it alone, Hyundai and Kia are spreading their investments to increase EV knowledge quickly. The firms have invested an undisclosed amount in US start-up Canoo in order to develop a bespoke, flexible EV platform for a range of smaller cars, while a further $110m has been spent partnering with UK-based Arrival for commercial EVs.



Binance to cease these crypto-derivative offerings in Australia



Once upon a time, regulators around the world weren’t confident about handling the crypto-ecosystem. This attitude, however, has changed of late thanks to the industry’s growth and the interest it has seen from traditional institutions and major investors.

The aforementioned change isn’t universal, alas, with some crypto-entities still coming under a lot of regulatory fire. Binance is a case in point. The platform has come under increased scrutiny from a growing number of regulators worldwide, including regulatory authorities from the U.K, the U.S, the Netherlands, and Canada.

Australia too has now been added to this ignominious list.

According to an official announcement made by the exchange, Binance will no longer offer Futures and Options trading in Australia. It read,

“As Binance constantly evaluates its product and service offerings to comply with local regulations, we will cease offering the following products to existing Australian users: Futures, Options, Leveraged Tokens”

Moreover, it revealed that ‘existing Australian users will have 90 days to reduce and close their positions for these products.’ Post 23 December, users will no longer be able to manually reduce their positions, and all remaining open positions will cease.

What does this mean for Binance and its executives?

Well, the aforementioned step is in alignment with its executives’ aim – To create a sustainable ecosystem around blockchain technology and digital assets. In fact, according to one of its executives,

“Binance welcomes developments to our industry’s regulatory framework as they pose opportunities for the market players to have greater collaboration with the regulators. We are committed to working constructively in policy-making that seeks to benefit every user.”

This move followed last month’s restrictions on Options, margin products, and leveraged tokens (New accounts were barred from engaging in).

And the “nightmare” continues… 

Binance took a similar hit in a different part of the world less than two weeks ago. It discontinued support for trading pairs in the Singapore dollar (SGD), again due to regulatory crackdown(s).
Binance found itself in troubled waters earlier this year, with regulators around the world zeroing in on the top exchange. The regulatory pressure forced the leading crypto-company to adopt a proactive approach to compliance. That being said, the jury is still out on whether these steps have been making any difference?
Moreover, US authorities are probing possible insider trading and market manipulation allegations involving Binance. The exchange, for its part, has denied these speculations. Binance has a “zero-tolerance policy for insider trading,” a statement said.
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Robinhood Testing New Cryptocurrency Wallet as Demand Rises



The millennial-focused trading portal is edging closer to launching a long-awaited app that will enable its growing user-base to send and receive cryptocurrencies.

A beta version of Robinhood’s iPhone app showed the company’s latest upgrades on the new digital asset features, according to Bloomberg.

There is a hidden image showing a waiting list for users eager to get their hands on the app and code referring to crypto transfers, it added.

Delving Deeper into Crypto

Robinhood users can already buy and sell cryptocurrencies on the platform but they need to convert them to and from USD. With a native app, users will be able to send crypto assets to each other directly and set up two-factor authentication for additional security.

Robinhood Chief Executive Officer Vlad Tenev stated that adding crypto wallets is a priority for the company’s developers and they are actively working on such.


“The ability to deposit and withdraw cryptocurrencies is tricky to do with scale, and we want to make sure it’s done correctly and properly.”

He did not specify a launch date, but the beta app leak suggests it is not too far away. Users of the new functions will need to activate crypto sending and receiving and the registration page will require an identity check, the report added.

On Sept. 11, CryptoPotato reported that Robinhood had launched incentives to promote longer-term cryptocurrency investing. The zero-fee recurring purchase feature enables users to schedule digital asset purchases for regular intervals with buys as low as a dollar.

This will encourage customers to build their cryptocurrency portfolios over time and “become a whole coiner,” stated Robinhood.

Robinhood Users Hungry For Crypto

Cryptocurrency trading has been one of the biggest drivers of revenue for Robinhood this year. Dogecoin has been the crown jewel, according to the company. It reported that 62% of its $233 million in second-quarter crypto income came from DOGE trading.

It added that more than half of all transaction-based revenue on the platform came from digital asset trading. The firm did warn that Q3 would not be as prosperous due to “seasonal headwinds and lower trading activity across the industry.”

Robinhood share prices have already fallen 43% since their all-time high of a little over $70 in early August. They are currently trading down 1.68% since Monday’s open at $40.70 according to Yahoo! Finance.


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Biggest Bank in Venezuela Suffers 5 Day Outage After Hack Attempt




The Bank of Venezuela, one of the biggest state banks in the country, is now experiencing an outage that has left its customers without services for five days. The bank published a PR statement stating this was the result of a “terrorist attack” on the national financial system, being perpetrated in the form of a massive hack. More than 16 million customers are still without banking services at the time of writing.

Bank of Venezuela Hacked In “Terrorist Attack”

The Bank of Venezuela, one of the biggest financial institutions in the country, servicing more than 16 million customers, is facing an outage that has left its online platform without service for five days. Bank customers starting complaining about the outage for these services on September 15, when some of them took their concerns to social media.

At that time, a worker of the bank told local media that the outage was the product of several adaptations that were being made to the online platform of the bank to support the Digital Bolivar redenomination plan. The bank issued a PR statement via social networks stating it was working to restitute the service on September 16.

However, this did not happen. On September 17, the bank issued yet another statement revealing the institution had been hacked as an attempt to perpetuate a “terrorist attack” on the national financial system. The statement also told users their financial information was safe, and that the bank was still working to restitute the services. No more details were offered.

16 Million Users Affected; Restitution Announced

The aftermath of this left more than 16 million users without banking services for a week. This means that a lot of people couldn’t make goods and services purchases and they are still waiting to make their everyday expenses.

Some of these users complained about this and stated this outage made them unable to buy food and medicines for their families. However, the Bank of Venezuela outed a statement stating their services will be restituted. The statement claims that services will be available again on September 20 and that the institution managed to preserve the integrity of the data, meaning that users will be able to access their accounts with the same information.

This is one of the longest outages that any bank had faced in the story of the country and reinforces the importance of the existence of an alternate finance system like cryptocurrencies, that would help deal with this kind of event.

What do you think about the Bank of Venezuela’s 5-day service outage? Tell us in the comments section below.

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