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Top Five: Moments in modern electric vehicle history

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Although electric vehicles have a history that stretches back to the 1800s, with European inventors coming up with battery-powered one-offs, the first recognizably car-like EVs took off around the turn of the Twentieth Century.

And these would have gone from strength to strength had Henry Ford’s Model T not made ICE power affordable and available, relegating electric cars, despite favorable interest from the public for their quiet operation and zero tailpipe emissions.

Thus, EVs have only had a bit-part to play in automotive history, with interest picking up in the 1970s, thanks to fuel crises, and properly getting going in the mid-1990s, which is where our Top Five picks begin:

#1 – GM EV1

When? 1996-2003
How many? 1,117

The first foray into the world of modern electric vehicles came courtesy of GM. The two-seat, aerodynamic EV1 coupe was leased to customers in California and Arizona. 660 cars were offered with a lead-acid battery, giving a range of up to 100 miles, while a second-gen car arrived in 1999 with a NiMH battery that took range to 140 miles.

Despite favorable reports from customers, GM cancelled the EV1 project in 2003, citing the fact that battery tech had not advanced quickly enough, and the car was too costly to make, although critics accused GM of jumping the gun.

Controversially, GM recalled and crushed all but 40 cars – the latter having their powertrain deactivated and donated to museums. However, in accordance with their policy that all vehicles in its collection must be operational, the Smithsonian does have a fully working first-generation EV1.

GM is now firmly back on the EV train with a new global platform that will underpin a huge range of models, plus extras designed by Honda.

#2 – Toyota RAV4 EV

When? 1997-2003/2012-2014
How many? 1,484/2,489

Not content with helping to popularize the dreaded crossover with its first-generation RAV4, Toyota also created an all-electric version for lease in California. Its NiMH battery gave a range of 95 miles and took five hours to charge. Unlike the EV1, when the leases ended, Toyota sold 328 RAV4 EVs, with a number known to still exist.

The second-gen model (above) is also noteworthy, as it was produced as a joint venture between Toyota and Tesla, before the Japanese car giant sold its stake in the Californian firm in 2017.

Again sold or leased only in California, the RAV4 used a Tesla Li-Ion battery pack and electronics related to those used in the Model S, with Toyota using the project to continue learning about EVs, and Tesla fine-tuning its knowledge of EV SUVs ahead of the launch of the Model X in 2015.

#3 – Nissan Leaf

When? 2010-Present
How many? Over 470,000

Although others – namely the Mitsubishi i-MiEV – claim the title of first mass-produced modern EV, the Leaf was the first to take electric vehicles global, selling in decent numbers in Europe, Asia and North America. The Leaf is built in Sunderland, UK; Oppama, Japan; and in Smyrna, TN, US for each respective market.

The first-generation model started with a 24kWh li-ion battery that gave around 73 miles of range. Over the past decade and the introduction of a new, second-generation model, the Leaf now features the option of a 62kWh li-ion battery, giving a range of around 239 miles. This car also features Nissan’s latest suite of ADAS tech, including its ProPilot lane keeping assistant.

#4 – BMW i3

When? 2013-Present
How many? Over 165,000

While the Leaf is aimed squarely at the mainstream, BMW took the electric vehicle into premium territory, albeit in pint-sized form, when it introduced the i3, first with the option of a gas-powered range extender, and now just as a pure EV.

The i3 was one of the first mass-produced cars to use a lightweight, five-door CFRP body to help boost range. Unlike the Leaf, which is most popular in Europe, most i3s have found homes in the US. Launching with a 22kWh battery, the i3 can now be had with a 42.2kWh unit, giving a maximum range of 153 miles.

Although BMW has not confirmed a successor to the i3, it has confirmed that the existing model will continue to be offered, albeit with updates, until at least 2024.

#5 – Tesla Model 3

tesla-model-3_1

When? 2017-Present
How many? Over 500,000

No list of game-changing EVs would complete without at least a small nod to Tesla and its impact on popularizing the technology. While the original Lotus Elise-based Roadster broke new ground – selling 2,450 units, with one currently flying through space – it’s the firm’s volume models that really matter.

The Model 3 has managed to pull off a number of significant tricks. It is desirable – becoming the first EV to hit 500,000 global sales in early 2020 – and also practical – able to fit five adults and luggage.

The Model also has surprising performance – capable of the 0-62mph sprint in a little over three seconds, while offering a minimum range of 220 miles from a 54kWh battery, up to 322 miles from the 75kWh battery.

Add in the fact that it is the firm’s most affordable model to date, and it is no surprise that the Model 3 is proving extremely popular. The Model Y crossover, based on the Model 3’s underpinnings, is just coming on stream, too.

Source: https://www.automotive-iq.com/electrics-electronics/articles/top-five-moments-in-modern-electric-vehicle-history

Blockchain

Da Vinci Capital Reportedly Requests $100 Million from Telegram for TON’s Failure

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A large investor in Telegram’s failed Open Network (TON) has reportedly requested $100 million in compensation from the company. Otherwise, the investor – Da Vinci Capital – has warned with taking legal actions against the messaging platform.

TON Investor Demands $100M

Telegram’s TON initiative was among the most widely-discussed blockchain-related projects in the past few years. However, the endeavor faced almost immediate backlash from the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as a US court decided at one point that the native currency – GRAMS – is a security token, which couldn’t be sold in the US or anywhere else.

Telegram attempted on multiple occasions to fight the court’s decision and to prove that GRAMS is not a security. However, to no avail and Pavel Durov, the company’s CEO ultimately had to throw the towel by saying that “Telegram’s active involvement with TON is over.”

Although the company has distanced itself from the failed blockchain project, the problems keep following it, according to a recent report by Forbes Russia. Citing anonymous people familiar with the matter, the coverage said that Da Vinci Capital, an investor in the $1.7 billion initial coin offering, has requested compensation for TON’s failure.

Lawyers from the Moscow-based investment company have reportedly sent a letter of intent to file a claim to Durov, Telegram Vice President Ilya Perekopsky, and other executives and lawyers involved with the project.
The report says that Da Vinci Capital had demanded roughly $100 million as compensation.

Two Weeks to Answer

Forbes’ coverage further explained that Durov and his colleagues have two weeks to transfer the funds or notify the lawyers from the investment company if they decide to reject it.

However, if Telegram fails to answer in the provided timeframe, Da Vinci Capital has the right to take the matter to court.

Apart from these allegations, Telegram recently negotiated funding round to raise at least $1 billion in a private bond placement to accredited investors from Russia, Europe, the Middle East, and Asia. Those bondholders would be able to convert debt into shares at a 10% discount to the offering price if Telegram decides to go public in the next five years, revealed the conditions of the round.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/da-vinci-capital-reportedly-requests-100-million-from-telegram-for-tons-failure/

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Blockchain

ChiliZ To Expand Operations, Will Invest $50 Million in the US

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Following milestone partnerships with sports teams in Europe, ChiliZ have their eyes set on conquering the United States. The fintech platform will open a new office in one of the world’s major commercial cities, New York.

ChiliZ To Set Up New York Office

Maltese blockchain giant, ChiliZ is scaling up operations after securing several partnerships with top European sports franchises. Reuters reported earlier today that the fan engagement platform would open an office and invest $50 million in the United States. According to its chief executive, Alexandre Dreyfus, the move should bring the firm within reach of top United States sports outfits. He told Reuters :

“A huge focal point for us in our global growth plans is the U.S.. That’s why we’re opening a New York office and investing $50 million into the country’s sports industry in order to launch Fan Tokens with leading franchises from the five major U.S. sports leagues”

On launching Fan tokens, ChiliZ has made headway through its subsidiary, Socios. It has partnered with football behemoths like FC Barcelona, Juventus, Paris Saint-Germain, AS Roma, Galatasaray, and Atlético de Madrid to launch branded fan tokens. These permit owners to engage in club polls, access VIP rewards, and partake in chat forums.

The company currently has offices in Malta, France, Turkey, Korea, Switzerland, and South America. It had earlier announced that it would open offices in New York and Madrid. With the New York office inching towards reality, Chiliz is undoubtedly advancing towards global growth.

Aims To Double Up on 2020 Revenue

Speaking further about the expansion, Dreyfus boasted about his company’s capacity to generate returns for its partners in the sports and entertainment industry. He said:

“We head to the U.S. with a proven track record in generating millions of dollars of revenue for some of Europe’s biggest sporting organisations. In 2020, we shared more than $30 million with our partners, but this year we’re targeting a minimum of $60 million.”

Revenue from the company’s partnership with seven-time European champions AC Milan proves Dreyfus is not bluffing. The Italian football giant launched its token ($ACM) on Binance on February 24th. Within hours of the launch, over $6 million was generated as trading volume hit $50 million in the first 30 minutes.

Big Market For ChiliZ?

For Joseph Edwards, Enigma Securities head of researcher, there is no better time to seize the initiative. He opined that the soaring interest in NFTs indicates a big market. He elaborated further that NFTs bridge the gap between fans and their subject of interest, especially as Covid-19 caused a disconnection.

“Fan tokens right now are just hitting the perfect itch at the perfect time – fans are disconnected physically from their fandom, and this helps bridge that gap,”

NBA Top Shots seems to be a perfect example. The NFT platform has continued to gain momentum as interest surges. It reached a record-breaking $231 million in sales over the past 30 days.  Perhaps, ChiliZ is taking a cue from this to target the American sports market.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/chiliz-to-expand-operations-will-invest-50-million-in-the-us/

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Crypto services firm BCB Group raises $4.5M led by North Island Ventures and Blockchain.com Ventures

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BCB Group, a crypto payment/trading services provider, today announced it has closed a $4.5 million investment round. The strategic funding was co-led by North Island Ventures and Blockchain.com Ventures; with participation from Pantera, L1 Digital, and Pack Capital.

As a dual regulated institution, BCB Group offers an end-to-end suite of payment processing, cryptocurrency trading, and custody. Services are accessible through a unified API-enabled platform; allowing clients to access a full range of crypto-asset products in one place.

Funding

The proceeds of the round will be used to fund investments in several new initiatives…

These initiatives include: BCB Treasury, a service designed to help companies interested in investing in bitcoin as a treasury asset. BCB Yield Accounts, a product offering clients a return on their positions. And BCB Wealth Partners, a comprehensive crypto service for private wealth clients.

“There’s so much more we want to offer our clients; and many untapped regions we’d like to be in to help those markets grow via reliable payments and market infrastructure. This funding round comes at a very exciting time for BCB Group and will be transformative for our client experience.”
– BCB Group Founder and CEO, Oliver von Landsberg-Sadie

Previously, back in March 2019, BCB Group received funding from NKB Finance and a private investor in a $1 million seed round; which brought the company much-needed talent in engineering and operations.

Source: bcbgroup.io

Source: https://www.cryptoninjas.net/2021/03/02/crypto-services-firm-bcb-group-raises-4-5m-led-by-north-island-ventures-and-blockchain-com-ventures/

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