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Top Five: Global EV Platforms

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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

ev-platform-vw1

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

gm-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

renault-morphoz__1_

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.

Source: https://www.automotive-iq.com/chassis-systems/articles/top-five-global-ev-platforms

Blockchain

Americans Can Now Buy Dogecoin from 1,800 Crypto ATMs Across the Country

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The meme coin that exploded in popularity recently, Dogecoin, has reached another milestone as the Bitcoin ATM provider CoinFlip decided to list the token on 1,800 cryptocurrency ATMs in the United States.

Dogecoin Coming to 1,800 ATMs

Started as a joke digital token inspired by Shiba Inu, Dogecoin took the world by storm in the past several months, which has prompted the popular Bitcoin ATM provider CoinFlip to take action.

The Chicago-headquartered company announced yesterday that it had added Dogecoin to its growing network of over 1,800 cryptocurrency ATMs located in 46 states.

The statement informed that this milestone “validates the legitimacy of the coin and further showcases CoinFlip’s dedication to meet consumer and industry needs as coin popularities shift.”

Daniel Polotsky, the CEO and Co-Founder of the ATM provider, said that the move would enable the general population a more straightforward way to receive Dogecoin exposure.

“Given its growing popularity and recent mass adoption, we are dedicated to making sure that Dogecoin is a part of our portfolio of coins and encourage further support of this cryptocurrency in the coming months.” – he added.

Dogecoin’s Support from Musk, Snoop Dogg, and More

CoinFlip reasoned that the Dogecoin listing comes after the token received massive endorsements from some of the world’s most popular names. Perhaps it all started with the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX – Elon Musk.

The executive previously updated his Twitter bio to display “former Dogecoin CEO,” posted dozens of DOGE-related tweets, and even bought some for his son.

Ultimately, every Musk interaction caused an immediate price reaction as DOGE surged to new highs. Consequently, the token even entered the top ten cryptocurrencies by market capitalization.

Furthermore, this skyrocketing craze caught the attention of other famous individuals, including the US rapper – Snoop Dogg.

As such, it may not be a surprise that CoinFlip said that its decision came only after Dogecoin received “support from celebrities such as Elon Musk, Snoop Dogg, Gene Simmons, and Kevin Jonas.”

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/americans-can-now-buy-dogecoin-from-1800-crypto-atms-across-the-country/

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Blockchain

Bitcoin at $21,000? Is a buying opportunity coming soon?

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A series of on-chain metrics registered corrections when Bitcoin fell on the charts last week. In fact, BTC dropped down to as low as $43,000 briefly, with significant reshuffling seen after Futures Open Interest dipped by $4 billion too.

Other factors such as the Bitcoin funding rate experienced a reset as well, with Grayscale’s premium registering a low of -3.77%. AMBCrypto had previously reported about the positive reboot for the aSOPR, wherein it was identified that weak hands were getting washed out.

However, one particular metric carrying historical importance did not correct much. Interestingly, it could possibly alter the course of the rally going forward.

Bitcoin NUPL continues to avoid 0.5 reset

Source: Glassnode

According to Glassnode’s latest report, the strength of the current Bitcoin rally can be illustrated by BTC’s Net Unrealized Profit and Loss or NUPL. In the past, the NUPL has regularly retested the 0.5-mark during bull market corrections. While a 0.5 re-test was seen multiple times during both the 2013 and 2017 rallies, the same is yet to be identified in the current market.

Here, it’s worth noting that market dynamics have definitely altered over the years with respect to user profitability and hodling sentiment, with selling pressure not fueling massive outflows for Bitcoin.

Source: CryptoQuant

Further, data from CryptoQuant seemed to suggest that Bitcoin outflows from exchanges have continued to maintain their low levels over the week, with long-term hodlers unfazed by the 21% decline in cryptocurrency’s price.

The resilience exhibited by investors was coming to fruition at press time since Bitcoin had managed to establish a position above its immediate resistance of $47,400 over the last 24 hours.

While it is still a little early to predict the start of a new bullish leg for Bitcoin, according to Willy Woo, consolidation above $45,000 is a strong sign of stability.

If history repeats itself, does NUPL reset carry a damaging outcome?

While the NUPL has not registered a reset at 0.5 during this rally, historically, it has happened during every bull cycle. According to data, the realized price trading is currently $14,511, and if the NUPL drops down to 0.5, it would mean Bitcoin would possibly drop down to a floor price of $21,766.

That would mean a 55.76% drop from BTC’s press time position, a drop that will completely take away all of BTC’s gains since 15 December 2020.

While historical probabilities are worth pondering over, it is also important to consider the macro-difference between previous rallies and the current one, with Bitcoin at the receiving end of more adoption than ever before.

For instance, the average weekly investment into Grayscale’s Bitcoin Trust during Q4 of 2018 was $2 million. The average investment in GBTC for Q4 of 2020 was $217.1 million. Needless to say, the course of history for Bitcoin is indeed changing.


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Source: https://ambcrypto.com/bitcoin-at-21000-is-a-buying-opportunity-coming-soon

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Litecoin is trading at a 1,800% premium via Grayscale’s LTC trust — But why?

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Shares in Grayscale Investments’ Grayscale Litecoin Trust, or LTCN, have been trading at a whopping 1,800% premium over the market rate of their underlying asset, Litecoin (LTC).

$319 per Litecoin? 

This difference is primarily due to retail investors’ inability to purchase shares directly from Grayscale Investments, whose funds are aimed exclusively at accredited investors.

LTC holdings per LTCN share (orange) and premium (blue). Source: Bybt.com

It costs $319 to buy a share in Grayscale Litecoin Trust. However, its LTC holdings per share are currently worth just $16.42. That means it’s almost 20 times more expensive to buy Litecoin via the trust than regular spot exchanges.

LTCN shares have recently traded for as high as $496 in November 2020 — 38% above Litecoin’s highest closing price in December 2017. Although the premium on Grascale’s Litecoin fund has been drastically cut over the past three months, LTCN shares remain an unattractive investment vehicle for retail traders.

The trust offers exposure to LTC without investors needing to handle or custody cryptocurrency. Nevertheless, its shares can only be sold by Grayscale Investments to institutional investors.

The unusual spread appears to have been driven by increasing retail demand for Litecoin ahead of the Mimblewimble privacy solution rollout, with Grayscale accumulating $258 million worth of LTC so far.

Arbitrage is not really an option

Grayscale’s Litecoin Trust aggressively ramped up accumulation in February, buying at a rate equal to 80% of new Litecoin being mined during the period.

However, anyone thinking about a potential arbitrage opportunity should note that all LTCN shares require a one-year holding period after they’re created. Besides, the trust requires all investors to be accredited, with a minimum of $25,000 to start.

The United States-based investment firm also offers trusts for other cryptocurrencies, including Bitcoin (BTC). The Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) is the firm’s largest holding, with over $30 billion in assets under management.

In recent days, the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust traded at a discount to net asset value as the TSX Purpose Bitcoin ETF saw record inflows. A diminished appetite in the secondary markets creates a potential imbalance, as there is no redemption program for the Grayscale rust funds.

Had there been a way to convert those shares back to their LTC or BTC equivalent, a market maker would gladly buy the trust shares at a discount.

The views and opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Cointelegraph. Every investment and trading move involves risk. You should conduct your own research when making a decision.

Source: https://cointelegraph.com/news/litecoin-is-trading-at-a-1-800-premium-via-grayscale-s-ltc-trust-but-why

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