Atumotive Exports April 2023

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Monthly automotive aftermarket magazine<br />




İstmag Magazin Gazetecilik<br />

İç ve Dış Ticaret Ltd. Şti.<br />

Managing Editor (Responsible)<br />

Mehmet Söztutan<br />

mehmet.soztutan@img.com.tr<br />

Advertising Sales Consultant<br />

Adem Saçın<br />

+90 505 577 36 42<br />

adem.sacin@img.com.tr<br />

EDİToR<br />

Mehmet Soztutan, Editor-in-Chief<br />

mehmet.soztutan@img.com.tr<br />

Enes Karadayı<br />

enes.karadayi@img.com.tr<br />

International Marketing Coordinator<br />

Ayca Sarioglu<br />

ayca.sarioglu@img.com.tr<br />

Advisory Editor<br />

Yusuf Okçu<br />

yusuf.okcu@img.com.tr<br />

Finance Manager<br />

Cuma Karaman<br />

cuma.karaman@img.com.tr<br />

Digital Assets Manager<br />

Emre Yener<br />

emre.yener@img.com.tr<br />

Technical Manager<br />

Tayfun Aydın<br />

tayfun.aydin@img.com.tr<br />

Graphic & Design Advisor<br />

Sami aktaş<br />

sami.aktas@img.com.tr<br />

Accountant<br />

Yusuf Demirkazık<br />

yusuf.demirkazik@img.com.tr<br />

Subsciption<br />

İsmail Özçelik<br />

ismail.ozcelik@img.com.tr<br />


İstmag Magazin Gazetecilik<br />

İç ve Dış Ticaret Ltd. Şti.<br />

Ihlas Media Center<br />

Merkez Mah. 29 Ekim Caddesi No: 11B / 21<br />

Yenibosna Bahcelievler, Istanbul / TÜRKİYE<br />

Tel: +90 212 454 22 22<br />

www.img.com.tr sales@img.com.tr<br />

KONYA:<br />

Metin Demir<br />

Hazım Uluşahin İş Merkezi C Blok<br />

Kat: 6 No: 603-604-605 KONYA<br />

Tel: (90.332)238 10 71 Fax: (90.332)238 01 74<br />



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No:11 A/41 Yenibosna–Bahçelievler/ İSTANBUL<br />

Tel: 0212 454 30 00<br />

www.ihlasmatbaacilik.com<br />

We are at Automechanika Astana <strong>2023</strong><br />

The automotive industry is one of the remarkable “locomotives” of the Turkish economy.<br />

It assembles some of the country’s largest exporters and represents one of the leading<br />

investor industries. A multitude of enterprises engage themselves in both production and<br />

trading, adding enormous value to the already dynamism of the automotive industry.<br />

Türkiye's autoparts industry exports are increasing steadily year by year.<br />

Competitiveness at the domestic level has been replaced with competitiveness on a<br />

global scale. The Turkish automotive industry, which was originally founded for importsubstitution<br />

purposes and focused on the domestic market for a long period, transformed<br />

itself into a production base for a number of global models.<br />

In motor vehicles, a large number of EU legislation was adopted. Turkey has been<br />

continuing efforts to introduce the relevant legal arrangements, and significant progress<br />

has been achieved in this field.<br />

It is the only country within the surrounding geographical area to have established a<br />

well-advanced automotive industry. Therefore, the automotive industry is strategically<br />

important both for Türkiye and for the firms that invest in Türkiye.<br />

The Turkish automotive supplier industry produces almost all types of parts, components<br />

and spare parts such as engines and engine parts, power train parts and components,<br />

brake and clutch parts and components, hydraulic and pneumatic systems, suspension<br />

systems, security systems, rubber and plastic parts, chassis, frames and parts, casting and<br />

forging, electrical equipment and parts, lighting systems, accumulator batteries, seats etc.<br />

The structure of the automotive industry is changing dynamically, making Türkiye an<br />

alternative suppliers center for global manufacturers.<br />

Actually, the brand name Automechanika signifys successful fairs for the automotive<br />

original equipment manufacturing and aftermarket industries around the world. Whether<br />

in Europe, Asia or the Americas, Automechanika aims at providing the ideal trading and<br />

information platform for automotive professionals.<br />

Messe Frankfurt’s international expertise in the field of trade fair organization<br />

and in-depth knowledge of the most dynamic markets provides the base for each<br />

Automechanika Fair.<br />

This month, we are at Automechanika Astana, <strong>2023</strong> to convey the messages of Turkish<br />

auto parts industrialists and exporters.<br />

Our publications remain at the service of those business people seeking to increase their<br />

share in the increasingly competitive automotive markets.<br />

We wish Turkish automotive exporters and their trading business people lucrative<br />

business.<br />

automotiveexport<br />


Automechanika Astana will be held at the International<br />

Exhibition Center EXPO, in the capital of Kazakhstan,<br />

<strong>April</strong> 12-14, <strong>2023</strong><br />

Automechanika Astana is a meeting point<br />

for the automotive business community:<br />

in the constantly changing economic<br />

conditions. It is important to know how<br />

to establish new supply chains as well<br />

as find direct helpful contacts. And the<br />

exhibition is an opportunity to discuss the<br />

details in person. Leading manufacturers<br />

and suppliers of automotive components,<br />

equipment and car maintenance<br />

products, such as Meiji Sangyo Company,<br />

TruckMotors, Bohnenkamp, Oscar<br />

Lubricants, Autograd and many others, will<br />

present their products in <strong>April</strong>. In addition,<br />

many brands can be found at the stand of<br />

BrainStorm, one of the key online stores for<br />

car service equipment in Eurasia.<br />

The international status of the exhibition<br />

is confirmed by companies from Spain,<br />

Thailand, Japan, Latvia, Poland, Belarus,<br />

USA, UAE. Last year experience also<br />

showed the demand for auto parts<br />

from China, so in <strong>2023</strong> a whole China<br />

pavilion will be organized. It will present<br />

such big players as tire manufacturers<br />

Huasheng and Roadboss, one of the<br />

leading manufacturers of shock absorbers<br />

and suspensions in China Zhejiang Gold<br />

Intelligent Suspension Corp, developer<br />

of scanning systems Newland and other<br />

companies.<br />

“And this, of course, is not the limit. Now<br />

we see the demand of foreign companies<br />

for cooperation with the actively<br />

developing Central Asian region,” the press<br />

center of the exhibition explained.<br />

Traditionally, the exhibition for trucks<br />

and commercial transport Futuroad<br />

Expo Astana will be collocated with<br />

Automechanika Astana. For example, this<br />

year SVS Trans will be among the exhibitors<br />

again. The spare parts for Isuzu, Man,<br />

Komatsu, Volvo, Carrier brands will be<br />

presented at the company stand. The “Fire<br />

Safety Center” group of companies decided<br />

to exhibit for the first time, diversifying the<br />

standard exposition with the fire-fighting<br />

equipment. The largest domestic vehicle<br />

manufacturer Allur will also take part in the<br />

exhibition. Visitors will have an opportunity<br />

to get acquainted with the latest samples<br />

of commercial, municipal and road<br />

construction vehicles and a wide range of<br />

auto parts.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 10

Innovation and Digitalization offer<br />

opportunities to the global automotive<br />

aftermarket<br />

Automechanika Dubai Network Event shared<br />

insights from key industry leaders<br />

Dubai, UAE: The global automotive<br />

aftermarket will see incredible change<br />

as the impact of digitalisation takes hold<br />

across multiple sectors of the industry,<br />

the audience heard at the Automechanika<br />

Dubai Network today. Industry thought<br />

leaders came together to share insights<br />

with over 100 attendees representing<br />

a wide spectrum of the automotive<br />

aftermarket and service industry including<br />

OEMs, wholesalers, distributors, garages,<br />

workshops, fleet owners and consultants.<br />

There are multiple disruptive trends<br />

impacting the automotive aftermarket,<br />

with digitisation a significant driver,<br />

according to Vishal Pandey, Director,<br />

Glasgow Research and Consulting Group<br />

(GCG). These include connected vehicles,<br />

autonomous driving, electrification,<br />

the increasing importance of software,<br />

digitisation of channels and interfaces,<br />

the importance of big data. In addition,<br />

a shift in competitive power and shared<br />

multimodal and micro mobility.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 12

Connected Vehicles Driving Change<br />

The mobility landscape is changing globally,<br />

with a focus on connectivity in particular,<br />

according to Sheerhan Jeaudeen, Head of<br />

Region, Middle East and East Africa and<br />

Managing Director, ZF Services Middle<br />

East. Citing predictions that almost 60%<br />

of all new vehicles will be connected by<br />

2030, Jeaudeen reminded attendees that<br />

a connected aftermarket will benefit all<br />

segments of the industry and help to<br />

achieve maximum uptime by connecting<br />

workshops and vehicles and ultimately<br />

create new methods of fleet management.<br />

“For aftermarket players, increasing<br />

connectivity delivers the potential of<br />

closer, more immediate relationships with<br />

customers,” Pandey concurred. GCG’s<br />

figures predict an even quicker penetration,<br />

expecting 75% of vehicles to be connected<br />

by 2025. He continued, “Advanced<br />

breakdown service transmits data to<br />

enable the responding party to deliver<br />

appropriate service, including necessary<br />

car parts,” and described a step change<br />

in services, adding that remote on-board<br />

diagnostics could lead to preventive service<br />

based on driving behaviour and vehicle<br />

usage replacing regular time-based service<br />

intervals as one example.<br />

E-Commerce Offers Opportunities<br />

With e-commerce in the GCC overall<br />

predicted to grow at a CAGR of 28% by<br />

2027, particularly in the UAE and Saudi<br />

Arabia, Subhashree Ramarathnam,<br />

Principal Consultant - Mobility Practice,<br />

Frost & Sullivan (F&S) provided an in-depth<br />

analysis of how aftermarket business<br />

models are shifting due to digitisation<br />

of parts retailing in addition to vehicle<br />

servicing. Ramarathnam noted that<br />

industry consolidation and integration<br />

are forcing aftermarket participants to<br />

extend their value proposition, while at<br />

the same time Covid19 gave a significant<br />

push towards online sales of vehicle parts<br />

and accessories and growth of service<br />

aggregators providing convenience to<br />

customers at their doorstep.<br />

Comparing the traditional aftermarket<br />

ecosystem to the new digital ecosystem,<br />

Ramarathnam noted that GCC platforms<br />

offer limited functionality. With research<br />

conducted by F&S finding that around 75%<br />

customers would prefer to get parts fitted<br />

professionally but 50% keen to purchase<br />

online, they recommend tapping this<br />

value chain with integrated intuitive digital<br />

options and in depth product content to<br />

enhance the customer journey.<br />

Automechanika Dubai to Drive<br />

Industry Forward<br />

With the automotive aftermarket industry<br />

clearly at the precipice of significant<br />

change, Automechanika Dubai aims to<br />

provide the industry with a platform to<br />

not only discuss these opportunities, but<br />

to drive and shape the outcome of the<br />

growth.<br />

“These Network events are a key part of<br />

Automechanika Dubai,” said Mahmut Gazi<br />

Bilikozen, Portfolio Director at organisers<br />

Messe Frankfurt Middle East. “By bringing<br />

together some of the latest research<br />

from thought leaders, we can share with<br />

attendees a snapshot of the industry and<br />

how it is changing. For Automechanika<br />

Dubai <strong>2023</strong> we will be adding new features<br />

including expanded knowledge streams,<br />

such as Innovation4Mobility which will<br />

include Innovation talks, StartUp Zone,<br />

Energy4Mobility, Digitech4Mobility and<br />

R&D4Mobility, alongside many others.”<br />

The 20th anniversary edition of<br />

Automechanika Dubai will be held on<br />

2 – 4 October <strong>2023</strong> at the Dubai World<br />

Trade Centre bringing together over 1,700<br />

exhibitors from 60+ countries.<br />

<strong>April</strong><br />

<strong>2023</strong><br />


Key actors of the automotive aftermarket industry will<br />

meet at Automechanika Istanbul for the 16th edition<br />

Automotive aftermarket sector aims higher in exports in <strong>2023</strong><br />

The automotive industry has a share of approximately 13% in<br />

Türkiye’s exports and aims to increase its exports to countries such<br />

as Germany, France, UK, USA, Poland and Belgium to reach an<br />

annual volume of over 30 billion USD. Industry players with product<br />

categories such as parts and systems, troubleshooting and repair,<br />

accessories and customization, electronics and connectivity, car<br />

wash and maintenance center, dealer and workshop management,<br />

alternative driving systems & fuels and lubricants achieve growth in<br />

export sales and volume by taking part in Automechanika Istanbul<br />

regularly for 15 years. The automotive aftermarket industry<br />

reached export volumes of 25.5 billion USD in 2020, 29.3 billion<br />

USD in 2021 and 30 billion USD in 2022 while global trade was in<br />

trouble due to the pandemic. The industry now plans to set the bar<br />

higher with the business potential generated by Automechanika<br />

Istanbul.<br />

The world’s no.1 trade fair brand for the automotive aftermarket<br />

industry, Automechanika’s largest trade platform in the region<br />

where continents meet, Automechanika Istanbul <strong>2023</strong> is eagerly<br />

awaited by the entire automotive aftersales industry.<br />

Automechanika Istanbul, which brought automotive industry<br />

professionals from all over the world together for the 15th<br />

time last year which achieved significant success by hosting 825<br />

exhibitors from 28 different countries and a total of 48,354 industry<br />

professionals from 141 countries. The fair aims to break a new<br />

record by reaching over 1,000 exhibitors and over 50,000 visitors<br />

this time at its big meeting to be held at Istanbul TUYAP Fair and<br />

Congress Center on 8-11 June <strong>2023</strong>.<br />

Automechanika Istanbul will also contribute to the development of<br />

the region which got affected by the earthquakes of February 6th,<br />

by working closely with institutions and organizations in Türkiye<br />

together with its global business partners.<br />

Automechanika: More than 50 years of experience in the<br />

automotive aftermarket industry<br />

Automechanika brand has a history of more than 50 years which<br />

first started in Frankfurt in 1971. Today, Automechanika trade fairs<br />

are held in 13 different cities around the world, including Istanbul<br />

since 2001 with a unique feature that brings the continents of<br />

Europe, Asia and Africa together. Organized by the partnership<br />

of Messe Frankfurt and Deutsche Messe which are the two<br />

giant companies of the global events industry, Automechanika<br />

Istanbul <strong>2023</strong> will be held at Istanbul TUYAP Fair and Congress<br />

Center between June 8th and 11th. The exhibitor allocations of<br />

Automechanika Istanbul <strong>2023</strong> is now complete and the main theme<br />

of the trade fair will be “sustainability”.<br />

The theme of “sustainability” will be highlighted at<br />

Automechanika Istanbul <strong>2023</strong><br />

As the automotive industry focuses more on sustainability with<br />

the impact of supply chains, the climate crisis and the change in<br />

consumer preferences around the world, sustainability-oriented<br />

approaches in the supply chain, employment and production<br />

policies will be highlighted at Automechanika Istanbul <strong>2023</strong>.<br />

The trade fair will present environmentally friendly solutions of<br />

new-generation automotive aftermarket technologies and the<br />

changes in the automotive industry with an entirely new concept.<br />

In a special area called “Connection 4 Mobility”, Automechanika<br />

Istanbul <strong>2023</strong> will offer automotive industry professionals the<br />

opportunity to experience the spare parts, charging systems,<br />

software, workshop and service ecosystem physically.<br />

Innovation 4 Mobility speacial area and Automechanika<br />

Academy programme will present the future of the<br />

industry<br />

In the special area of “Innovation 4 Mobility”, a wide range of<br />

content from autonomous driving to digital transformation, from<br />

connected vehicles to fuel systems will be presented to industry<br />

professionals at Automechanika Istanbul. In this special area, an<br />

exemplary service station, which will include all the necessary<br />

after-sales equipment and eye-catching cars for an electric vehicle,<br />

can also be visited. Thanks to the presentations, panels, trainings<br />

and workshops organized within the scope of Automechanika<br />

Istanbul, sector representatives will have the opportunity to<br />

evaluate the developments in the sector and comments on<br />

the future and contribute to their professional development.<br />

Automechanika Academy is now a traditionally important part<br />

of Automechanika Istanbul which consists of high standards of<br />

educational, informative and enlightening presentations, interviews<br />

and sessions with the participation of experts in their fields. The<br />

events held during the trade fair are aimed that the team members<br />

of R&D, design and production departments of large-scale regional<br />

and national automotive manufacturers get up-to-date information<br />

about the latest developments, know-how, trends and technologies<br />

in the sector.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 16

From automobiles to computers, display tech race heats up<br />

From giant screens to smart mobile<br />

phones, consumer electronics dominated<br />

this year’s edition of the annual technology<br />

mega-show that saw hundreds of<br />

companies and startups of all sizes descend<br />

on Las Vegas over the past few days.<br />

Although autonomous and electric<br />

vehicles, long been pitched as the new<br />

dawn of transportation, seem to have again<br />

been in the focus, the popular CES <strong>2023</strong><br />

gadget fest showcased another heated race<br />

on the mobility side: Screens.<br />

As display technology continues to develop,<br />

the concept of mobility is changing with<br />

autonomous driving. Everyone in the<br />

car, including the driver, will be more<br />

engaged with the screens in the vehicle.<br />

In other words, the race continues for the<br />

entertainment and information displays of<br />

cars.<br />

Togg, the developer of Türkiye’s first<br />

homegrown electric vehicle, also attracted<br />

attention at this year’s CES, showing off its<br />

multiple mobility solutions.<br />

All in all, although the screens have<br />

changed in size and shape, they have<br />

remained the focus of the world’s biggest<br />

tech mega-show, formerly known as the<br />

Consumer Electronics Show.<br />

Now there is a need for faster, more<br />

powerful computers and screens for both<br />

gaming and cars. Investments continue<br />

to pour in for devices that perform more<br />

processes and increase data and display<br />

technology for autonomous driving.<br />

Whoever dominates the voice commands<br />

and screens will lead the race. Even though<br />

platform companies seem to be ahead in<br />

voice command, more capable competitors<br />

are also preparing to join the race.<br />

Talented partners are what almost all<br />

automotive companies are looking for.<br />

This year’s CES edition was also dominated<br />

by the German luxury automaker BMW’s<br />

unveiling of a prototype for a car that talks<br />

like a human being, changes colors to suit<br />

the driver’s mood and has no screens on its<br />

dashboard.<br />

The BMW i Vision Dee features an<br />

advanced Head-Up Display, which is all<br />

about giving drivers a choice of how much<br />

augmented reality they want to see as they<br />

drive. With this system, combined with<br />

the BMW Mixed Reality Slider, the driver<br />

specifically adjusts what information the<br />

system will show as part of the Shy-Tech<br />

approach.<br />

Among the options consisting of five<br />

different steps, information about<br />

traditional driving, the content of the<br />

system, smart device connectivity,<br />

augmented reality projection and Dee’s<br />

virtual world can be accessed.<br />

BMW i Vision Dee is able to disconnect<br />

from the outside world by gradually<br />

dimming the windows thanks to the mixed<br />

reality it features to increase driving<br />

pleasure for its<br />

Automotive giants continue their<br />

investments in autonomous driving to<br />

compete with technology giants.<br />

Stellantis, one of the world’s leading<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 18

automotive groups, in late December<br />

announced it had completed the<br />

acquisition of aiMotive, a leading developer<br />

of advanced artificial intelligence and<br />

autonomous driving software, to accelerate<br />

the autonomous journey.<br />

The aiMotive will operate as a subsidiary<br />

of Stellantis while supporting the mediumterm<br />

development of the all-new STLA<br />

AutoDrive, the group’s autonomous driving<br />

technology platform, and will continue to<br />

offer part of its existing technology product<br />

portfolio to third-party customers.<br />

This year’s CES edition also saw the debut<br />

of ASUS’s ROG Swift Pro PG248QP, a<br />

monitor that delivers a peak 540 Hz refresh<br />

rate, a first in the world, across its 24-inch<br />

E-TN panel.<br />

The 24.1-inch FHD (1920x1080) monitor<br />

with an ultrafast 540 Hz refresh rate is<br />

designed for professional gamers and<br />

immersive gameplay.<br />

The model, which has a unique appearance<br />

with its ergonomic stand featuring<br />

extendable clips, opens up a convenient<br />

place on the table for players who want to<br />

keep their keyboard and mouse close to<br />

the monitor.<br />

The NVIDIA Reflex Analyzer on the built-in<br />

NVIDIA G-SYNC processor measures endto-end<br />

system latency, showing gamers<br />

how their system is performing. The built-in<br />

ESS USB codec offers almost zero audio<br />

latency, with an environmental sound<br />

effect along with the sounds of weapons<br />

and footsteps in games.<br />

Asus also announced their forthcoming<br />

ROG Strix XG49WCR gaming monitor. This<br />

49-inch monitor features a 5120x1440<br />

resolution with a native 165 Hz refresh<br />

rate and a 1800R curve, offering extremely<br />

impressive and fluid visuals in games.<br />

Thanks to the Smart KVM switch, players<br />

can easily continue to use the keyboard<br />

and mouse when switching between two<br />

different devices connected to the monitor.<br />

Supporting HDR technology, Strix XG49WCR<br />

offers amazing HDR performance with a<br />

125% sRGB professional color gamut and<br />

factory calibration with Delta E

Hawk-Eye’s multi-view videos by live sports<br />

data and virtual characters can now be<br />

reproduced on the SR Screen as a new<br />

entertainment style.<br />

The use of laptops as tablets provides users<br />

with the flexibility of use.<br />

The new upgraded NXTPAPER technology<br />

showcased at CES <strong>2023</strong> is also used in TCL’s<br />

first detachable 2-in-1 laptop, the TCL Book<br />

X12 Go.<br />

Like the NXTPAPER 12 Pro, the Book X12 Go<br />

has a portable, lightweight design with a<br />

3:2 aspect ratio and comes with a 12.2-inch<br />

2K display with low blue light.<br />

The innovative 2-in-1 structure of the<br />

device fits perfectly into flexible lifestyles.<br />

The detachable keyboard allows for a<br />

traditional PC setup for typing users, while<br />

the thin X12 Go can also be used as a tablet<br />

when the keyboard is removed.<br />

With these features, the device provides a<br />

versatile usage opportunity. Thanks to the<br />

use of multi-screen, you can go beyond<br />

managing projects on just one screen and<br />

share files with other devices and project<br />

them on their screens.<br />

The X12 Go was built for unlimited<br />

productivity, so professionals or innovative<br />

people never have to compromise on<br />

bringing their ideas to life. With preinstalled<br />

Windows 11 Home, calendars,<br />

emails and documents become even easier<br />

to use. The efficient Qualcomm Octa-Core<br />

Snapdragon 7c Gen 2 allows the X12 Go<br />

to handle every task throughout the day,<br />

while its long-lasting battery provides up to<br />

14 hours of power on a single charge.<br />

The X12 Go’s NXTPAPER display also<br />

produces a tactile feel that provides an<br />

effortless typing experience. The screen<br />

has anti-fingerprint glass that is free of<br />

smudges and fingerprints, offering smooth<br />

and stable use thanks to its nano-chemical<br />

material coating. Thus, the E-Pen can be<br />

used on the surface sensitively and easily.<br />

Türk Telekom, one of Türkiye’s leading<br />

information and communication<br />

technologies companies, unveiled its<br />

goals toward helping to further grow the<br />

country’s startup ecosystem at this year’s<br />

CES edition.<br />

CEO Ümit Önal said that they are working<br />

with the goal of exporting the technology<br />

solutions developed by Türk Telekom to the<br />

world.<br />

“With TT Ventures, our corporate venture<br />

capital company, we invest in domestic<br />

technology startups and develop business<br />

partnerships with them and aim to show<br />

their potential in the global arena,” Önal<br />

said.<br />

Türk Telekom CEO Ümit Önal poses for a<br />

photo during the CES <strong>2023</strong>, the world’s<br />

largest annual consumer electronics show,<br />

in Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S., Jan. 7, 2022.<br />

(IHA Photo)<br />

“With this motivation, we will be a bridge<br />

connecting startups to the world with the<br />

TT Ventures Office we have opened in San<br />

Francisco,” he added.<br />

Önal also visited the area within the scope<br />

of CES hosting the startups from Türkiye,<br />

including ventures that graduated from TT<br />

Ventures’ acceleration program PILOT.<br />

Held from Janç 5-8 in Las Vegas, the<br />

world’s largest consumer electronics<br />

show featured the latest innovations in<br />

artificial intelligence, sustainability, energy<br />

management, autonomous vehicles, smart<br />

cities and digital health, while the startup<br />

ecosystem also dominated the stage.<br />

Önal said that bringing Turkish brands to<br />

the world stage will only be possible with<br />

the strengthening of the entrepreneurial<br />

ecosystem in the country, adding that they<br />

consider any kind of work that will reduce<br />

dependence on foreign technology as a<br />

national task.<br />

“With our corporate venture acceleration<br />

program PILOT under the roof of TT<br />

Ventures, we are opening the doors<br />

to growth and value for startups. With<br />

this motivation, we aim to be a bridge<br />

connecting startups to the world with the<br />

TT Ventures Office we have opened in San<br />

Francisco. Thus, we will open the valuable<br />

ideas coming out of our country to the<br />

world through Silicon Valley, where the<br />

heart of technology and innovation beats,<br />

and we will strengthen the ecosystem here<br />

by carrying the innovative ideas in the<br />

world to our country,” he noted.<br />

The total amount of investment received<br />

by PILOT graduates operating in almost<br />

all countries, from Asia and Europe to<br />

North America and South America, has<br />

approached $20 billion, Önal said.<br />

“Three of these startups have investors<br />

from the United States, namely MentalUP,<br />

which offers a brain exercise application for<br />

children, Bluedot, our startup that offers a<br />

charging station solution, and Cineshort, a<br />

short movie-watching mobile application,”<br />

he added.<br />

<strong>April</strong><br />

<strong>2023</strong><br />


Booming demand prompts Türkiye to<br />

pledge more homegrown Togg cars<br />

Türkiye’s first domestically manufactured<br />

car brand will be delivering more units<br />

than it had earlier planned as part of the<br />

initial deliveries due to booming demand<br />

after the automaker launched the preorder<br />

process.<br />

Yet, both the size of the first batch of fully<br />

electric C-segment SUVs to be distributed,<br />

as well as the date of the draw, have been<br />

changed, the company said .<br />

The statement came as Turks have been<br />

flocking online seeking to be among<br />

the first owners of the country’s first<br />

domestically manufactured car, which went<br />

into production within five years from its<br />

design phase.<br />

Togg said it now plans to deliver 20,000<br />

units of T10Xs to buyers that will be<br />

selected in the draw set for.<br />

The change came after the company said<br />

more than 100,000 people submitted<br />

applications in the first week after the<br />

preorder process was launched.<br />

“We thank you for your great interest,<br />

we are increasing the number of T10X to<br />

be delivered by lottery from 12,000 to<br />

20,000,” it wrote on Twitter. “The last day<br />

for preorders is March 27<br />

Users who use a Tru.ID via the Trumore<br />

application or the Togg website are entitled<br />

to participate in the draw by configuring<br />

the T10X they want to preorder and<br />

making the down payment of TL 60,000 to<br />

the Trumore e-Wallet via money transfer<br />

or credit card. Togg’s first model will have<br />

a price ranging from TL 953,000 (around<br />

$50,230) to around TL 1.22 million.<br />

The vehicle is being manufactured by a<br />

consortium of five Turkish companies called<br />

the Automobile Initiative Group of Türkiye,<br />

or Togg, in cooperation with the Union of<br />

Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of<br />

Türkiye (TOBB).<br />

Having begun mass production in late<br />

October, Togg said the fully electric T10X<br />

would be initially sold with one engine and<br />

two battery options.<br />

The model will feature a range of 314<br />

or 523 kilometers (195 or 325 miles),<br />

depending on the battery size. The twinengine<br />

type will also be offered for sale in<br />

the coming period.<br />

The first version of the T10X is able to<br />

accelerate from zero to 100 kph (62.14<br />

mph) in 7.6 seconds, while the second, for<br />

which delivery will start on Oct. 29, can do<br />

zero-100 kph in 4.8 seconds.<br />

The second version also sports an allwheel<br />

drive, featuring 320 kW power (435<br />

horsepower).<br />

The batteries of the Togg T10X can be<br />

recharged to up to 80% from 20% in less<br />

than 28 minutes at fast-charging stations.<br />

Drivers can choose from six different color<br />

options for the electric vehicle.<br />

Calling itself a technology brand that<br />

blends digital and physical experiences,<br />

Togg has joined hands with multiple<br />

startups to produce a new mobility<br />

ecosystem.<br />

Besides the SUV, Togg will manufacture<br />

another four models – a sedan,<br />

C-hatchback, B-SUV and B-MPV – through<br />

the year 2030. The sedan will follow the<br />

mass production of the SUV.<br />

The carmaker earlier said it aimed to<br />

produce up to 20,000 cars this year.<br />

Although it marks a low level compared<br />

to global standards, Togg achieving this<br />

output level will see it more than doubling<br />

Türkiye’s electric car fleet within a year.<br />

The current production capacity stands at<br />

around 100,000 vehicles per year, a figure<br />

that is expected to reach 175,000 once<br />

Togg’s factory reaches full capacity.<br />

The brand aims to produce 1 million<br />

vehicles across the five segments by 2030.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 22

Court freezes all Volkswagen assets in Russia<br />

Volkswagen’s assets in Russia were frozen<br />

by a court, in a move that marks the<br />

latest obstacle to the German carmaker’s<br />

year-long efforts to wind down its Russian<br />

operations.<br />

Volkswagen, along with other foreign<br />

carmakers, suspended operations in Russia<br />

last year after Western countries imposed<br />

unprecedented sanctions on Moscow over<br />

the conflict in Ukraine.<br />

Volkswagen has been trying to sell its<br />

Russian assets, including its flagship<br />

plant in the city of Kaluga, which has a<br />

production capacity of 225,000 vehicles<br />

a year and has been furloughed since<br />

March 2022. Russian auto manufacturer<br />

GAZ, which was contracted to produce<br />

Volkswagen vehicles at its factory in Nizhny<br />

Novgorod, sought to halt any sale as part of<br />

a lawsuit against the German carmaker for<br />

what GAZ says is a breach of contract after<br />

Volkswagen terminated the production<br />

agreement in August.<br />

In court filings, GAZ said Volkswagen’s<br />

attempts to exit the Russian market put its<br />

own interests at risk and it is seeking 15.6<br />

billion rubles ($201.3 million) in damages<br />

over the terminated contract.<br />

A Russian court agreed to freeze all<br />

of Volkswagen’s assets in Russia while<br />

the dispute with GAZ plays out, court<br />

documents showed, further hitting<br />

VW’s attempts to wind down its Russian<br />

operations.<br />

Czech carmaker Skoda Auto, part of the<br />

Volkswagen Group, said it was in the final<br />

stages of a deal to sell its Russian assets.<br />

Exit plans<br />

Russia mandates that companies from<br />

“unfriendly” countries – those which have<br />

hit Russia with sanctions – are required<br />

to win approval from a government<br />

commission for the sale of any Russian<br />

assets.<br />

Foreign investors have feared Russia could<br />

move to nationalize strategic assets since<br />

the restrictions on sales were brought in.<br />

Last July President Vladimir Putin issued<br />

a decree to seize full control of the<br />

Sakhlain-2 gas and oil project in Russia’s<br />

far east, effectively taking almost 50% of<br />

the project from Shell and two Japanese<br />

trading companies.<br />

Other leading Western carmakers have<br />

left the Russian market. Last year France’s<br />

Renault sold its majority stake in Avtovaz to<br />

a Russian state entity for a symbolic fee of<br />

one ruble – effectively writing off assets it<br />

previously valued at 2.2 billion euros ($2.35<br />

billion). Russia’s auto industry has been<br />

one of the worst hit by Moscow’s decision<br />

to send tens of thousands of troops into<br />

Ukraine in February last year.<br />

Previously reliant on Western investment,<br />

equipment and parts, car production last<br />

year fell by an unprecedented 67% to its<br />

lowest level since the collapse of the Soviet<br />

Union.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 24

VW issues int’l recall<br />

of over 270K cars over<br />

airbag risk<br />

German auto giant Volkswagen will issue a recall for more than<br />

270,000 cars due to safety risks in their airbags.<br />

As the company confirmed, the recall involves a new tranche of<br />

models in which technology from the Japanese manufacturer<br />

Takata is installed.<br />

According to data from Germany’s Federal Motor Transport<br />

Authority (KBA), no vehicles are currently affected in Germany, but<br />

some could have entered the country, according to VW.<br />

The authority cited “faults in the gas generator of the front<br />

airbags” as the reason. This could lead to “uncontrolled<br />

deployment and the release of metal fragments that could injure<br />

the occupants.”<br />

In the past, there had already been several accidents in various<br />

countries, some of them serious.<br />

In the past, recalls were considerably more extensive. In China,<br />

for example, Volkswagen had to send almost 4.9 million cars to<br />

the workshops in 2017 because of possibly defective airbags.<br />

The cause is said to be an inferior propellant that can mistakenly<br />

trigger the airbag, especially in higher humidity in warm climates.<br />

“In order to rule out serious safety risks, affected airbags will<br />

therefore be replaced according to availability,” VW said.<br />

The current recall concern cars “that were delivered in hot<br />

countries, for example in South America,” a spokesperson said.<br />

“However, it cannot be ruled out that individual vehicles have also<br />

found their way to Germany.”<br />

According to the KBA, the recall concerns certain versions of the<br />

VW Golf and Passat, the small car Fox, the pickup Saveiro and the<br />

Brazilian sedan Voyage from model years 2013 to 2017<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 28

Ford to boost production, add more staff as US sales resume<br />

As the firm and the automotive industry<br />

begin to recover from weak U.S. sales in<br />

2022, Ford will increase the manufacturing<br />

of six models this year, half of which are<br />

electric, the company revealed .<br />

Ford Motor Company intends to increase<br />

production of the Mustang Mach-E, Bronco<br />

Sport SUV and Maverick compact pickup,<br />

F-150 Lightning electric pickup, Transit and<br />

E-Transit gas and electric full-size vans, and<br />

all of the aforementioned models.<br />

The company announced last year that<br />

it would add a third shift and 1,100 jobs<br />

to its full-size van plant in Claycomo,<br />

Missouri, close to Kansas City, as well<br />

as 3,200 additional jobs related to the<br />

production of the F-150 Lightning, which is<br />

made in Dearborn, Michigan, to help with<br />

production growth.<br />

According to spokesperson Said Deep, Ford<br />

will also hire a number of new employees<br />

this year at the Cuautitlan and Hermosillo,<br />

Mexico, plants that manufacture the<br />

Mach-E, Maverick and Bronco Sport.<br />

More workers will arrive later, he said, and<br />

production line speeds will soon increase<br />

to boost output.<br />

For more than two years, U.S. auto sales<br />

have been depressed largely due to a<br />

shortage of computer chips during the<br />

coronavirus pandemic. But the chip<br />

shortage is easing and automakers like Ford<br />

are starting to increase production and<br />

build supplies on dealer lots.<br />

Overall in the U.S., auto sales fell almost<br />

8% last year to just under 14 million, with<br />

Ford’s dropping just over 2%, according<br />

to Autodata Corp. But in February, overall<br />

industry sales rose 9.5% over the same<br />

month a year ago, according to LMC<br />

Automotive, which sees sales increasing<br />

to 15 million this year. Ford sales were up<br />

almost 22% in February.<br />

Jeff Schuster, executive vice president<br />

of automotive at LMC and Global Data,<br />

declared that the industry was on the<br />

road to recovery. In order to control its<br />

full-size pickup truck inventory, crosstown<br />

rival General Motors will shut down<br />

manufacturing in Ft. Wayne, Indiana.<br />

As a battery caught fire during a predelivery<br />

quality check, Ford stopped<br />

making the F-150 Lightning in February.<br />

However, the battery problem has been<br />

fixed, and production will begin on March<br />

13 at a rate of 150,000 units annually, said<br />

Deep.<br />

By the end of the year, Mach-E production<br />

will increase to a rate of 210,000 units<br />

annually, and the business intends to<br />

increase Bronco Sport and Maverick<br />

manufacturing by 80,000 units this year.<br />

Transit and E-Transit production will rise by<br />

38,000 this year.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 30

Karsan e-JEST Is The European Leader<br />

For Three Consequent Years<br />

Pioneering the electrification of public<br />

transportation in Europe, Karsan<br />

differentiates with its successful products.<br />

Karsan e-JEST, which hit the roads in 2019,<br />

also became Europe’s best-selling electric<br />

minibus in 2022, after 2020 and 2021.<br />

Stating that the market size has nearly<br />

doubled in a year, Karsan CEO -Okan Baş<br />

said, “We closed another year as the leader<br />

in the growing market, when competitors<br />

started to gain strength. We became the<br />

leader of the European electric minibus<br />

market with e-JEST for the third year, too,<br />

in a row. This is a very significant success<br />

not only for Karsan but also for the Turkish<br />

automotive industry.”<br />

Offering high-tech mobility solutions with<br />

the vision of being ‘One Step Ahead in the<br />

Future of Mobility’, Karsan is making an<br />

impression in Europe as well as in Turkey<br />

with its electric buses. Karsan, which<br />

has almost dominated Europe’s electric<br />

minibus market, is also ambitious in electric<br />

mobility with its e-JEST model. Karsan<br />

e-JEST, which Karsan launched in 2019 as its<br />

first electric model, continues its leadership<br />

in Europe electric minibus market in 2022<br />

as well as in 2020 and 2021.<br />

According to the European Minibus Market<br />

Report published by Wim Chatrou - CME<br />

Solutions in 2022 for the minibuses<br />

between 3.5-8 tons; Karsan e-JEST became<br />

the leader of the electric minibus market<br />

with a share of 28% as in the last two<br />

years. Karsan CEO Okan Baş stating that<br />

the electric minibus market in Europe grew<br />

by 84% in 2022 compared to the previous<br />

year, says “The market volume has almost<br />

doubled in just one year. We closed<br />

another year as the leader in the growing<br />

market, when our competitors started to<br />

gain strength, and for the third year in a<br />

row, we became the leader of the European<br />

electric minibus market with e-JEST. This<br />

is a very significant success not only for<br />

Karsan but also for the Turkish automotive<br />

industry. As a very strong model in markets<br />

such as France, Romania, Portugal, Bulgaria<br />

and Spain, Karsan e-JEST draws attention.”<br />

Emphasizing that every one of four electric<br />

minibuses sold in the European market is<br />

Karsan e-JEST, Okan Baş said, “e-JEST that<br />

we launched at the end of 2018 and put<br />

into service in 2019, continues to increase<br />

its success every year. In many European<br />

countries, people safely travel with e-JEST<br />

buses. This is also the best indicator of<br />

Karsan’s experience, advanced R&D and<br />

qualified employee expertise. In addition<br />

to e-JEST, our 8-meter-long e-ATAK model<br />

became the leader of the electric midibus<br />

segment in Europe for the second time in<br />

2022. I believe that all Karsan models will<br />

maintain the same strong success rate in<br />

<strong>2023</strong>.”<br />

Passenger car comfort in public<br />

transportation!<br />

Proving itself with high maneuverability<br />

and unprecedented passenger comfort,<br />

e-JEST has a BMW electric engine<br />

producing 170 HP power and 290 Nm<br />

torque. With its batteries having BMW<br />

infrastructure, e-JEST offers a range of<br />

up to 210 kilometers and gives the best<br />

performance of the 6-meter electric<br />

minibus class. e-JEST regenerative braking<br />

system providing energy recovery can<br />

charge 25% of its batteries. Equipped<br />

with a fully digital display panel, keyless<br />

start, USB input and an optional feature<br />

providing Wi-Fi compatible infrastructure,<br />

e-JEST is equally good at the comfort of a<br />

passenger car with its 4-wheel independent<br />

suspension system.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 32

Stellantis to sell Türkiye distribution<br />

business to Tofaş in $425M deal<br />

One of Türkiye’s most giant conglomerates,<br />

Koç Holding, and global carmaker Stellantis<br />

announced they had reached a deal to<br />

expand their joint venture Tofaş, including<br />

a change of the ownership structure of<br />

a local distribution unit.Under a new<br />

strategic agreement, Tofaş will acquire all<br />

shares of Stellantis distribution company in<br />

Türkiye, Stellantis Otomotiv Pazarlama A.Ş.,<br />

the partners said in a statement. The deal<br />

reportedly amounts to around 400 million<br />

euros ($425 million).<br />

As a result, all Stellantis brands in the<br />

country – Alfa Romeo, Fiat, Citroen, DS<br />

Automobiles, Jeep, Maserati, Opel, and<br />

Peugeot – will be distributed by Tofaş, the<br />

statement noted. Shares of Tofaş jumped<br />

as much as 9.8%m to a record high of TL<br />

194.<br />

“To gather all the activities in Türkiye under<br />

one single entity ... will not only allow<br />

unprecedented synergies in commercial<br />

activities, production, and R&D globally but<br />

will also pave the way to offering broader<br />

and more efficient products and services,”<br />

the statement said. Tofaş is a carmaker<br />

owned by Koç Holding and Stellantis, which<br />

was formed in 2021 through the merger<br />

of France’s PSA and Fiat Chrysler. Koç<br />

Holding CEO Levent Çakıroğlu said, “We<br />

are resolved to continue to play our part<br />

in healing the wounds of Türkiye’s Feb. 6<br />

earthquake disaster as we try to recover<br />

from the pain caused by the event. As Koç<br />

Group, we are committed to investing in<br />

our country, believing the new agreement<br />

will help overcome this difficult period.<br />

“This strategic investment, combined<br />

with Tofaş’s production volume, export<br />

performance, and R&D capabilities, is<br />

taking the company to new heights in the<br />

automotive industry,” said Koç Holding CEO<br />

Levent Çakıroğlu.<br />

“As the leading automotive company in<br />

Türkiye, Tofaş will further expand its goals<br />

and strengthen its credentials with this<br />

new investment,” Çakıroğlu said. “We<br />

will continue to do our best to increase<br />

the competitiveness of Türkiye in the<br />

automotive industry through the added<br />

value that will be generated.”<br />

For his part, said Stellantis CEO Carlos<br />

Tavares said Türkiye “plays a critical role<br />

in Dare Forward 2030, our long-term<br />

strategic plan, as we push to achieve a<br />

leading market share in the Middle East<br />

and Africa.”<br />

“Deepening our partnership with Koç will<br />

produce synergies, increase value, and<br />

grow the market potential for the array<br />

of Stellantis brands across all segments,”<br />

Tavares noted. Meanwhile, Stellantis said<br />

it would allocate production of a range<br />

of mid-size light commercial vehicles and<br />

cars, dubbed “K0,” to Tofas across five<br />

brands that will start production in 2025.<br />

The statement said that the Doblo van<br />

will continue until the start of work on the<br />

production lines of the “K0” model in July<br />

of this year.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 34

Erdoğan inaugurates Türkiye’s 1st boron carbide facility<br />

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan<br />

inaugurated Türkiye’s strategic facility for<br />

boron processing, the first boron carbide<br />

plant in the country.<br />

Addressing the inauguration ceremony,<br />

Erdoğan said the Bandırma Boron Carbide<br />

Production Facility, which represents an<br />

investment of $80 million (TL 1.52 billion)<br />

is set to become the world’s first facility of<br />

its kind.<br />

Boron carbide has various applications,<br />

such as in armor wear-resistant mechanical<br />

parts, which are essential to the defense<br />

industry. These products can be found in a<br />

wide range of items, from personnel vests<br />

to sheltered plates, the president said.<br />

“The Bandırma facility is expected to<br />

produce around 1,000 tons, providing<br />

a twofold increase in value. Its opening<br />

is significant not only for increasing the<br />

added value of boron mining but also for<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 36

the strategic contribution it will make to<br />

Türkiye,” he added, highlighting that the<br />

high technology facility “will enable Türkiye<br />

to turn its rare earth element, discovered in<br />

Eskişehir, into profit.<br />

“The aim is to implement a comprehensive<br />

system that starts from the raw material<br />

and extends to the final product, reflecting<br />

a determination to maximize the potential<br />

benefits of this investment,” Erdoğan<br />

added.<br />

At full capacity, the facility in western<br />

Balıkesir’s Bandırma will employ 279<br />

people and produce 1,000 tons of boron<br />

carbide annually.<br />

According to the earlier statements made<br />

by the ministry of energy and natural<br />

resources, in Türkiye, which has 73% of<br />

the world’s boron reserves, Eti Maden – a<br />

state-owned mining and chemical products<br />

institution that primarily extracts boron<br />

minerals and derivatives in the country –<br />

broke a record with a sales revenue of $1.3<br />

billion last year.<br />

Speaking previously on Türkiye’s boron<br />

capacity and the new facility, Energy and<br />

Natural Resources Minister Fatih Dönmez<br />

said the country was selling boric acid and<br />

buying boron carbide before, especially<br />

those armor-making companies.<br />

“We have an annual import of 350 tons,”<br />

he said, adding that the capacity of the<br />

new facility will open be 1,000 tons.<br />

“In other words, we will no longer be<br />

an importer and become an exporter,”<br />

Dönmez said. Türkiye is also home to the<br />

world’s highest quality boron mine, which<br />

has over 200 applications, Dönmez said,<br />

noting that the global demand for boron<br />

is massive, with 4 million tons of it being<br />

used worldwide, and the processed refined<br />

product’s monetary value is estimated to<br />

be around $2 billion.<br />

“The glass industry accounts for half of the<br />

boron usage, while the agricultural sector’s<br />

share is rapidly increasing. Last year, the<br />

agricultural sector’s share rose to 17%,<br />

a significant improvement compared to<br />

the past two years, indicating the sector’s<br />

growing importance in the global boron<br />

market,” he said.<br />

Dönmez went on to say that Türkiye<br />

currently exports one-third of its boron<br />

sales to China, making it the country’s<br />

largest boron market.<br />

Besides the Balıkesir facility, Dönmez noted<br />

the country is set to open a new boron<br />

carbide plant with an annual capacity of<br />

5,000 tons in Kütahya’s Emet.<br />

“The construction work has begun, and the<br />

plant is expected to be operational within<br />

three years,” he said.<br />

“Additionally, Türkiye’s first ferrobore plant<br />

was established on the same campus last<br />

year, with an annual production capacity<br />

of 800 tons. The plant is expected to be<br />

operational by the end of this year. In<br />

another development, a pilot plant for<br />

rare earth elements will soon be launched<br />

in Eskişehir’s Beylikova. The region boasts<br />

the world’s second-largest rare earth<br />

field, and the pilot plant is expected to be<br />

operational in <strong>April</strong>,” Dönmez maintained.<br />

“These developments are a testament to<br />

the importance of investing in materials<br />

science, as technological advancements are<br />

driven by the materials used. As Türkiye<br />

continues to develop new materials, it<br />

will significantly enhance its technology<br />

capabilities,” he added.<br />

According to Serkan Keleşer, the general<br />

manager of Eti Maden, currently, the world<br />

produces 5.7 million tons of boron, with Eti<br />

Maden producing 2.7 million tons.<br />

Additionally, Eti Maden produces and sells<br />

450,000 tons of boric acid annually.<br />

Keleşer explained that domestic and<br />

foreign companies have shown an interest<br />

in purchasing boron carbide, and Eti Maden<br />

aims to meet this demand.<br />

<strong>April</strong><br />

37 <strong>2023</strong>

Türkiye grants Tesla charging stations<br />

license as EV race heats up<br />

Türkiye’s energy watchdog extended the<br />

U.S.-based electric carmaker Tesla a license<br />

to operate a charging network in the<br />

country.<br />

Tesla is now one of 119 companies to<br />

operate charging stations and offers<br />

support to electric vehicle (EV) drivers<br />

across Türkiye.<br />

“With charging stations to be installed<br />

at several locations, including parking<br />

lots, shopping centers and gas stations by<br />

licensed operators, electric vehicle owners<br />

will be able to receive charging services<br />

and will be able to travel more affordably<br />

in the face of rising fuel prices,” the Energy<br />

Market Regulatory Authority (EPDK) said.<br />

There are 3,728 commercial charging<br />

stations in Türkiye, including 3,082 slow<br />

(AC) and 646 fast (DC) charging stations,<br />

according to the authority.<br />

Boosted by lower consumer tax rates than<br />

combustion-engine cars, new electric car<br />

registrations have surged more than 90% in<br />

Türkiye since 2021, according to the EPDK<br />

data. As of December 2022, 14,896 new<br />

electric vehicles were registered compared<br />

to 7,694 in the same month of 2021, the<br />

EPDK data showed. Although it is not<br />

officially in Türkiye, Tesla, run by billionaire<br />

Elon Musk, officially started hiring for its<br />

Istanbul service center in December and is<br />

reportedly due to launch in the country in<br />

the near future.<br />

Musk, in May 2018, said Tesla had planned<br />

to enter Türkiye later that year, before<br />

the decision was abandoned after an<br />

escalating tariff dispute between Ankara<br />

and Washington.<br />

The company already planned the<br />

deployment of Supercharger stations and<br />

issued a map showing the locations of the<br />

network.<br />

Although the share of electric and hybrid<br />

cars remains at low levels, the growth in<br />

sales shows a soaring interest of consumers<br />

in the electrified market.<br />

The EV competition in Türkiye is due to<br />

heat up as Togg, the first domestically<br />

made EV brand, is due to start deliveries as<br />

of the end of this month.<br />

Togg began mass production in late<br />

October and sales of its first model, the<br />

C-segment SUV, are set to begin this<br />

month. In what has been seen as a boost to<br />

the national car project, Türkiye announced<br />

it would impose an additional 40% customs<br />

duty on electric vehicles made in China.<br />

The move came just days after Chinese<br />

EV giant BYD Co. signed a memorandum<br />

of understanding (MoU) with Turkish<br />

distributor ALJ Türkiye to enter the Turkish<br />

market with its passenger and light<br />

commercial vehicles.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 40

Turkish national car Togg receives its<br />

1st international order<br />

Türkiye’s domestic automobile Togg’s<br />

Gemlik factory campus was opened with<br />

great pride and it has already started to<br />

attract attention abroad.<br />

Togg has already received its first order<br />

from overseas. Azerbaijani President Ilham<br />

Aliyev personally placed the order with<br />

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in a phone<br />

call. The president told a live broadcast on<br />

ATV a Haber that Aliyev wants to buy two<br />

cars for himself. Meanwhile, reports noted<br />

that the toy cars that President Erdoğan<br />

distributes to children as gifts will be in the<br />

form of Togg cars from now on.<br />

One of Türkiye’s <strong>2023</strong> vision projects, Togg<br />

is being greeted with great enthusiasm<br />

in the country. After President Erdoğan<br />

pointed to February for the pre-sale of<br />

the car, advertisements with the headline<br />

“For sale to buy a Togg” began to appear<br />

on second-hand sales platforms. Citizens<br />

have already put their existing vehicles on<br />

sale on the internet in order to buy a Togg,<br />

which will hit the road in March <strong>2023</strong>.<br />

Minister of Treasury and Finance Nureddin<br />

Nebati said he gave instructions to ensure<br />

the accessibility of Togg for the wider<br />

population. “Our ministry has already<br />

started its work. We spoke to public banks.<br />

Ziraat Bank, Halk Bank and Vakıfbank and<br />

our participation banks will provide the<br />

necessary support at the point of access to<br />

these vehicles,” he said. The new models,<br />

the C-Sedan and C-X Coupé, unveiled by<br />

Togg on its Twitter account, Türkiye, Nov. 2,<br />

2022. (Courtesy of Togg)<br />

In a post by Togg on its Twitter account,<br />

“While we unloaded our first smart device,<br />

the C-SUV, we wanted to introduce you to<br />

the C-Sedan and C-X Coupé, whose work<br />

continues in line with our plans.” the post<br />

read.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 42

EU reaches deal to reduce energy<br />

consumption at bloc level<br />

The European Union struck a deal to cut<br />

final energy consumption across the bloc<br />

by 11.7% by 2030, a goal lawmakers said<br />

would help fight climate change and curb<br />

Europe’s use of Russian fossil fuels.<br />

The deal was agreed upon after allnight<br />

talks between negotiators from EU<br />

countries and the European Parliament.<br />

Hitting the targets will require countries<br />

to renovate millions of draughty buildings<br />

to waste less energy. Constructing and<br />

using buildings produces a third of EU<br />

greenhouse gas emissions, and with most<br />

European buildings heated by fossil fuels,<br />

the goal is crucial to the EU’s efforts to<br />

combat climate change.<br />

“This will mean real change for the benefit<br />

of the climate and disadvantage of Putin,”<br />

said Niels Fuglsang, Parliament’s lead<br />

negotiator.<br />

Negotiators agreed that energy consumed<br />

by end-users in the bloc such as<br />

households and factories in 2030 should<br />

be 11.7% lower than expected use by<br />

that date. The EU had initially proposed<br />

in 2021 that the target be a 9% saving but<br />

hiked that to 13% last May in a bid to quit<br />

Russian fuels faster after Russia, previously<br />

Europe’s top gas supplier, invaded Ukraine.<br />

The 11.7% goal was a compromise between<br />

the EU Parliament, which had wanted a far<br />

higher goal of 14%, and some EU countries<br />

who wanted to stick to the original 9% aim.<br />

The target will be legally binding. Countries<br />

will set their own non-binding national<br />

goals – but if they do not add up to the<br />

11.7% goal, the European Commission will<br />

correct them. From 2024 to 2030, countries<br />

will have to save an average of 1.49% of<br />

final energy consumption per year.<br />

Countries will have to speed up their<br />

renovations of public buildings, renovating<br />

at least 3% of the total floor area of<br />

publicly-owned buildings each year.<br />

The deal will now go to the European<br />

Parliament and EU countries for a final vote<br />

– which is usually a formality that approves<br />

the law with no changes.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 44

Berlin fair marks<br />

tourism’s return,<br />

defying inflation<br />

The Berlin tourism industry fair celebrated<br />

its comeback from the dark days of the<br />

coronavirus pandemic with a strong<br />

demand that has so far defied high inflation<br />

figures.<br />

The industry gathering returned after<br />

a three-year hiatus enforced by the<br />

pandemic crisis, with 5,500 exhibitors from<br />

161 countries descending on the German<br />

capital.<br />

“Travel is back!” Julia Simpson, the head of<br />

the World Travel and Tourism Council said<br />

during the fair.<br />

In 2022, the World Tourism Organisation<br />

(UNWTO) registered an increase in<br />

international arrivals of almost 900 million<br />

compared with the previous year.<br />

In total, arrivals stood at 67 percent of<br />

their pre-pandemic level, with the figure<br />

reaching as high as 80 percent in Europe.<br />

“We are already at a similar level to 2019”<br />

in some countries, said UNWTO Europe<br />

director Alessandra Priante.<br />

Savings power<br />

“The savings made by a whole section<br />

of the population during the pandemic<br />

lockdowns have yet to be fully spent and<br />

are flowing into the sector,” said Clemens<br />

Fuest, head of the economic think tank Ifo<br />

Institute.<br />

China’s abandonment at the end of last<br />

year of its zero-COVID-19 policy, which<br />

strictly regulated travel in and out of the<br />

country, has been another boon.<br />

Before the pandemic, Chinese travelers<br />

represented 15% of all tourists.<br />

The atmosphere at the fair was celebratory<br />

with delegates from central Asia and Pacific<br />

islands parading through the aisles in<br />

traditional garb to promote their region.<br />

“Our clients have all come back,” Lukas<br />

Knauber, 23, a German spa hotel worker,<br />

told Agence France-Presse (AFP).<br />

The upturn in fortunes has continued<br />

despite painfully high inflation in many<br />

parts of the world. Consumer prices in the<br />

eurozone rose at an 8.5% pace in February<br />

and look set to remain elevated.<br />

But the positive trend may not carry<br />

forward very far.<br />

“In <strong>2023</strong>, many consumers were able to<br />

say I’m going even if I have lost spending<br />

power. But in 2024 that will probably not<br />

be the case,” said Fuest.<br />

Consumer behavior is already changing<br />

because of inflation. In Germany, more and<br />

more holidaymakers are “booking early in<br />

the year to benefit from discounts”, the<br />

German tourism industry group DRV said in<br />

early March.<br />

One in two clients at travel giant Tui is<br />

choosing the all-inclusive option, in order<br />

to have a better grip on their expenditure,<br />

according to Stefan Baumert, the group’s<br />

lead for Germany.<br />

In the cruise industry, “55% of customers<br />

say they want to spend less money or travel<br />

less far,” according to Markus Stumpe, CEO<br />

of the website Cruisewatch.<br />

Climate concern<br />

“The sector will have to adapt its offers and<br />

prices to this new context,” Fuest said.<br />

At the fair in Berlin, the startup Room Price<br />

Genius is showing software that allows<br />

small hotels to estimate the ideal price for<br />

a room.<br />

Not just consumers, but the sector itself<br />

is reeling from rising costs, especially for<br />

energy.<br />

To limit the sector’s impact on the<br />

environment, people will also have<br />

to “pay more”, according to Soeren<br />

Hartmann, head of the German federal<br />

tourism organization BTW. Rising global<br />

temperatures are having a major impact on<br />

much-loved holiday destinations as winter<br />

snows fail to materialize and summer heat<br />

waves become more frequent.<br />

According to a study published in<br />

the scientific journal Nature, tourism<br />

represented eight percent of global<br />

emissions in 2018.<br />

“The climate transition is the biggest<br />

challenge facing tourism,” Katharina<br />

Schlossar, 22, a hotel worker in Bavaria told<br />

AFP.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 46

Türkiye to boast<br />

10,000 charging<br />

stations as EVs<br />

go mainstream<br />

The number of charging stations for electric<br />

vehicles (EV) across Türkiye could reach<br />

as much as 10,000 by the end of <strong>2023</strong>,<br />

according to an industry official, primarily<br />

driven by the unprecedented demand for<br />

the first homegrown car that is due to start<br />

deliveries.<br />

The tendency toward greater adoption of<br />

battery-powered cars has been gaining<br />

major pace, a trend that has been further<br />

reaffirmed by the fact that over 100,000<br />

preorders were submitted for the first<br />

indigenous EV brand Togg in the first week<br />

since it launched the process on March 16.<br />

The preorders reached 177,467, the<br />

carmaker announced.<br />

The demand made the brand raise the<br />

number of units of its EV model named<br />

T10X that it will start delivering as of <strong>April</strong><br />

to 20,000, up from the initially planned<br />

12,000. Buyers of these will be selected<br />

through a digital draw that is scheduled.<br />

The demand has provided a clear hint for<br />

the infrastructure, the head of the Electric<br />

and Hybrid Vehicles Association of Türkiye<br />

(TEHAD) Berkan Bayram said.<br />

“We need a lot more charging stations,<br />

considering that the demand received by<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 50

Togg in the preorder reached 100,000 in a<br />

week,” Bayram added.<br />

“I predict that our total charging network<br />

will reach 10,000 by the end of the year.”<br />

Besides the infrastructure that has already<br />

been set up by private sector operators or<br />

is planned for the upcoming period, Togg<br />

has been establishing a charging station<br />

network across Türkiye under a brand<br />

named Trugo.<br />

Over 1,000 stations that will feature<br />

charging capacities of between 180<br />

kilowatts (kW) and 300 kW were aimed<br />

to be rolled out at over 600 spots in 81<br />

provinces. Trugo charging stations of<br />

Türkiye’s first domestic car brand Togg are<br />

installed in Bolu, northwestern Türkiye,<br />

Oct. 1, 2022. (AA Photo)<br />

Ever-growing interest and investments have<br />

helped Türkiye reach a level where it boasts<br />

a network of as much as 6,500 charging<br />

stations, said Bayram.<br />

“We cannot say that this number is<br />

enough,” he stressed. “The charging<br />

network has increased and the demand for<br />

electric vehicles is high.”<br />

Bayram informed that 122 companies have<br />

been granted EV charging station operator<br />

licenses, compared to just five before 2020.<br />

“We are seeing continuous technological<br />

progress in the rechargeable battery sector<br />

because, in the long term, the goal of all<br />

countries worldwide is to switch from fossil<br />

fuel vehicles to new-generation electric<br />

vehicles that are emission-free and do<br />

not pollute the air and our living spaces,”<br />

Bayram added.<br />

With mass production already begun in late<br />

October, Togg said its fully electric T10X<br />

would be initially sold with one engine and<br />

two battery options.<br />

The model will feature a range of 314<br />

or 523 kilometers (195 or 325 miles),<br />

depending on the battery size. The first<br />

version of the T10X is able to accelerate<br />

from zero to 100 kph (62.14 mph) in 7.6<br />

seconds, while the second, for which<br />

delivery will start on Oct. 29, can do zero-<br />

100 kph in 4.8 seconds.<br />

The second version also sports an allwheel<br />

drive, featuring 320 kW power (435<br />

horsepower).<br />

The vehicle is being manufactured by a<br />

consortium of five Turkish companies called<br />

the Automobile Initiative Group of Türkiye,<br />

or Togg, in cooperation with the Union of<br />

Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of<br />

Türkiye (TOBB).<br />

The consortium inked a deal with Farasis,<br />

one of the world’s most prominent<br />

companies, to build a lithium-ion battery<br />

factory near Togg’s production site in<br />

northwestern Bursa province.<br />

Bayram said that in the transition from<br />

lead-acid to next-generation battery<br />

technology, lithium-based batteries are the<br />

most preferred type by EV manufacturers.<br />

The batteries of the Togg T10X can be<br />

recharged to up to 80% from 20% in less<br />

than 28 minutes at fast-charging stations.<br />

“The most important advantages of a<br />

lithium-based battery are that it has the<br />

highest cell voltage per unit cell, the<br />

highest energy density per unit mass, no<br />

memory effect, high cycle life, is physically<br />

more durable, has the highest charging<br />

efficiency and requires less maintenance,”<br />

said Bayram.<br />

He said Togg’s first model would feature<br />

two battery packs with capacities of 52.4<br />

and 88.5 kilowatt-hours, boasting ranges of<br />

314 and 523 kilometers, respectively.<br />

“It is important to note that these ranges<br />

may vary depending on weather and how<br />

the car is used. The long-range version of<br />

the Togg has been said to be the first to hit<br />

the road,” Bayram added.<br />

Calling itself a technology brand that blends<br />

digital and physical experiences, Togg has<br />

joined hands with multiple startups to<br />

produce a new mobility ecosystem. Besides<br />

the SUV, Togg will manufacture another<br />

four models – a sedan, C-hatchback, B-SUV<br />

and B-MPV – through the year 2030. The<br />

sedan will follow the mass production of<br />

the SUV.<br />

The carmaker earlier said it aimed to<br />

produce up to 20,000 cars this year.<br />

Although it marks a low level compared<br />

to global standards, Togg achieving this<br />

output level will see it more than doubling<br />

Türkiye’s electric car fleet within a year.<br />

The current production capacity stands at<br />

around 100,000 vehicles per year, a figure<br />

that is expected to reach 175,000 once<br />

Togg’s factory reaches full capacity.<br />

The brand aims to produce 1 million<br />

vehicles across the five segments by 2030.<br />

EV sales in Türkiye jumped 172% yearover-year<br />

in 2022 to 7,300 units, according<br />

to industry data. However, their share<br />

remained under 1% within the total vehicle<br />

market, which stood at around 783,000<br />

units last year.<br />

The total number of electric cars increased<br />

almost twofold last year but stayed at<br />

around 15,000 units.<br />

<strong>April</strong><br />

51 <strong>2023</strong>

Tesla taps Asian partners to<br />

address 4680 battery concerns<br />

It’s crunch time at Tesla Inc., where Elon<br />

Musk is looking to crack the code for<br />

making better, cheaper batteries.<br />

The electric-vehicle maker is recruiting<br />

Chinese and Korean materials suppliers to<br />

help lower the cost and boost the energy<br />

of its newest battery cells, even as the<br />

company struggles with battery-related<br />

performance and production issues<br />

that have helped delay the launch of its<br />

futuristic Cybertruck, according to people<br />

familiar with the plans. Tesla has tapped<br />

China’s Ningbo Ronbay New Energy and<br />

Suzhou Dongshan Precision Manufacturing<br />

to help trim materials costs as it ramps<br />

up production of 4680 battery cells in the<br />

United States, according to the sources,<br />

who asked not to be named.<br />

The details of these arrangements have not<br />

previously been reported.<br />

If the Austin, Texas-based EV maker is able<br />

to work out the performance and process<br />

kinks and meet its ambitious production<br />

targets, the 4680 ultimately could be the<br />

linchpin - rather than choke point – in<br />

CEO Musk’s dream of building 20 million<br />

vehicles annually by 2030.<br />

Neither Tesla nor Musk could be reached<br />

for comment. As part of its efforts, Tesla<br />

also has signed a deal with Korea’s L&F Co<br />

to supply high-nickel cathodes that could<br />

increase the energy density of its 4680<br />

cells, one of the sources said.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 54

The automaker aims to augment its own<br />

output with 4680 cells from Korea’s LG<br />

Energy Solution and Japan’s Panasonic –<br />

an insurance policy to secure future EV<br />

production, two of the sources said. LG and<br />

Panasonic are expected to supply cells for<br />

Cybertruck, one of the sources said.<br />

A shortage of batteries means “the factories<br />

stall,” Musk told investors in early March.<br />

The new battery is expected to play a key<br />

role in the launch late this year of the edgy,<br />

stainless-steel Cybertruck, the company’s<br />

first new model in over three years. Tesla<br />

had considered three battery options<br />

to ensure that the launch is not delayed<br />

again: Smaller 2170 cells used widely in<br />

other Tesla models, 4680 cells and lessexpensive<br />

lithium iron phosphate cells,<br />

but the EV maker favored waiting until<br />

the 4680 cells are ready, the sources said.<br />

Details about Tesla’s Cybertruck battery<br />

strategy, including the use of 4680 cells and<br />

consideration of other options, have not<br />

been reported.<br />

In 2022, Musk said he did not expect 4680<br />

batteries would be a “limiting factor for<br />

Cybertruck or anything else.”<br />

The Tesla-designed 4680 cell – so named for<br />

its external dimensions (46mm diameter,<br />

80mm length) – is crucial to future<br />

production plans. Tesla intends to make<br />

versions at factories in Texas, California,<br />

Nevada and Berlin for use in vehicles from<br />

Model Y to Cybertruck, the sources said.<br />

But Tesla is still struggling to ramp up<br />

the first wave of production, Musk<br />

acknowledged at Tesla’s investor day on<br />

March 1.<br />

‘Tesla impact underestimated’<br />

Despite the immediate problems, some<br />

analysts remain optimistic Tesla will resolve<br />

these issues.<br />

“While execution risk remains and many<br />

details are unknown, Tesla’s impact on<br />

the global battery industry may still be<br />

underestimated,” Morgan Stanley said after<br />

investor day.<br />

Musk first announced the new cell at<br />

Battery Day in September 2020. At that<br />

event, he promised a 50% reduction in cell<br />

cost through a series of innovations, from<br />

a larger cell size to a new “dry” electrode<br />

coating process that could dramatically<br />

reduce the size and cost of a battery factory<br />

while boosting cell performance.<br />

Repeated delays in moving the new cell<br />

from the initial prototype phase to fullscale<br />

production also have pushed back<br />

the introduction of the long-awaited<br />

Cybertruck, which was designed to<br />

take advantage of the cell’s potential<br />

improvement in energy density and power<br />

– advances that have yet to materialize.<br />

But it will take time for suppliers to ramp<br />

up production.<br />

Panasonic is running a pilot 4680<br />

production line at its Wakayama factory<br />

in Japan and plans to start volume<br />

production later in the fiscal year that<br />

ends in March 2024. Shoichiro Watanabe,<br />

chief technology officer of Panasonic<br />

Energy, last month said the company’s new<br />

Kansas battery plant will focus initially on<br />

2170 cells, but it will eventually shift 4680<br />

productions to North America.<br />

Last year, LG said it planned to open a new<br />

4680 production line at its Ochang plant in<br />

Korea in the second half of <strong>2023</strong>.<br />

Tesla’s first-generation 4680 cells, built at<br />

its Fremont, California, factory, failed to hit<br />

an energy density target, people involved<br />

say.<br />

The automaker so far has been able to drycoat<br />

the anode – the negative electrode<br />

but is still having issues with dry-coating<br />

the cathode, where the most significant<br />

gains are expected to be made, the sources<br />

said.<br />

Tesla’s attempt to ramp up production of<br />

the dry coating process has resulted in<br />

enough batteries only for about 50,000<br />

vehicles annually, Musk and company<br />

executives have said.<br />

In 2020, Musk said Tesla would have<br />

enough 4680 capacity in-house to supply<br />

1.3 million Model Ys.<br />

While executives said it seems likely Tesla<br />

will be able to increase 4680 output fivefold<br />

by year-end, the company is hedging.<br />

Musk is betting if Tesla ends up with too<br />

many batteries this year that is a good<br />

problem to have. It can use those for the<br />

energy storage systems it sells to utilities<br />

and consumers.<br />

Tesla also has been installing firstgeneration<br />

4680 cells with “wet” cathodes<br />

in so-called structural packs in Texas-built<br />

Model Ys. A majority of those vehicles use<br />

the older 2170 cells.<br />

Tesla plans to use a cathode with over<br />

90% nickel in the next generation of 4680<br />

cells, two sources said. L&F is expected to<br />

be one of the suppliers of that high-nickel<br />

cathode, another source said.<br />

<strong>April</strong><br />

56 <strong>2023</strong>

Otokar expands presence in UAE, Gulf<br />

Turkish defense giant Otokar, which exports<br />

its vehicles to over 40 countries, is set to<br />

expand its presence in the United Arab<br />

Emirates (UAE) with new versions of its<br />

Rabdan 8x8 vehicles. These vehicles serve<br />

as a key component for ground troops.<br />

Otokar is showcasing six vehicles, including<br />

the Akrep II Armored Reconnaissance,<br />

Surveillance and Weapon Platform Vehicle<br />

Cockerill CSE 90LP with a 90-millimeter<br />

turret, the Arma 8x8 Armored Combat<br />

Vehicle with a 30-millimeter Spear turret<br />

system, and the Tulpar Tracked Armored<br />

Combat Vehicle with a 30-millimeter Spear<br />

turret, at the IDEX International Defense<br />

Industry Fair held in Abu Dhabi, the capital<br />

of the UAE.<br />

With these new offerings, Otokar is<br />

positioning itself to play an even greater<br />

role in the UAE’s defense industry.<br />

At the Otokar booth, visitors were offered<br />

a close-up look at a range of vehicles,<br />

including the Cobra II Armored Personnel<br />

Carrier, Cobra II MRAP Mine-Proof Armored<br />

Vehicle, and Arma 6x6 Armored Personnel<br />

Carrier. Speaking to Anadolu Agency<br />

(AA), Otokar General Manager Serdar<br />

Görgüç noted that the company had been<br />

exhibiting at the fair since the late 1990s<br />

and was among the first participants<br />

this year. He added that Otokar’s Cobra<br />

vehicles were particularly popular in<br />

the region and that the company was<br />

currently pursuing major projects in the<br />

area. Görgüç highlighted the significance<br />

of the IDEX, stating that it is among the<br />

most important defense events worldwide.<br />

According to Görgüç, IDEX brings together<br />

delegations from various regions, including<br />

Far and Central Asia, Africa, Europe and<br />

South America, producing a productive<br />

environment for international users to<br />

discuss potential projects and purchases.<br />

Görgüç also noted that Otokar had a<br />

subsidiary called Otokar Land Systems<br />

in the UAE and operated in the country<br />

through Al Jasoor company. He explained<br />

that Al Jasoor had delivered an 8x8<br />

vehicle project in four years, and that the<br />

first phase had been completed in the<br />

previous year. Being in the UAE allowed the<br />

company to engage with users and discuss<br />

potential variants, applications and other<br />

needs related to their existing 8x8 project.<br />

According to Görgüç, the 8x8 vehicle<br />

project for the UAE was not only significant<br />

within the country and Türkiye, but also<br />

on an international level. With a total of<br />

400 vehicles, this was a major project,<br />

and Otokar was successful in winning the<br />

contract in 2017, he said.<br />

As the user gained confidence in the<br />

vehicle’s performance, Otokar began<br />

exploring different uses and variants<br />

to meet various needs. Currently, the<br />

company is in contact with the user<br />

through Al Jasoor, as they discuss the tools<br />

needed for a battalion-level organization.<br />

During this stage of the project, Otokar<br />

is working to incorporate technological<br />

innovations and changes into the vehicles.<br />

Looking ahead, Görgüç expressed hope<br />

that there would be further projects<br />

related to Rabdan vehicles.<br />

Accordingly, Görgüç stated that they aim<br />

to bring the 8x8 ambulance vehicle they<br />

exhibited at the fair to the country, and<br />

stated that the ambulance version of the<br />

Rabdan vehicle was tested by the medical<br />

units in the UAE and was successful.<br />

Otokar Land Systems is currently operating<br />

in Bahrain and Kuwait, providing Arma,<br />

Ural, Cobra and Cobra 2 vehicles for<br />

four different forces in Bahrain and two<br />

different users in Kuwait, Görgüç went<br />

on to say. In addition to supplying these<br />

vehicles, Otokar has also established<br />

maintenance facilities in both countries,<br />

and negotiations are ongoing for new<br />

products to meet emerging needs.<br />

Görgüç emphasized that Otokar Land<br />

Systems is closely monitoring the needs<br />

of all Gulf countries, and is committed<br />

to providing high-quality products and<br />

services to meet those needs.<br />

With 78% of its 2022 turnover coming from<br />

exports, Otokar is focused on diversifying<br />

its offerings beyond exports to include a<br />

wider range of products and expand to new<br />

markets worldwide, he said.<br />

“At present, one of Otokar’s key goals is<br />

to add at least one, and ideally two, new<br />

countries to its user base every year. To<br />

achieve this goal, the entire Otokar team<br />

is working hard to identify emerging<br />

market trends and develop innovative new<br />

products that meet the evolving needs of<br />

customers worldwide.”<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 58

Turkish central<br />

bank cuts<br />

rate to 8.5%,<br />

monitors quake’s<br />

economic effect<br />

The Central Bank of the Republic of Türkiye<br />

(CBRT) slashed its benchmark policy rate by<br />

50 basis points after keeping it unchanged<br />

for two consecutive months.<br />

The central bank lowered its one-week<br />

repo rate to 8.5% from 9%.<br />

The decision was made at the year’s<br />

second Monetary Policy Committee (MPC)<br />

meeting.<br />

“The committee assessed that the current<br />

monetary policy stance after the measured<br />

reduction is adequate to support the<br />

necessary recovery in the aftermath of the<br />

earthquake by maintaining price stability<br />

and financial stability,” the bank said in<br />

a statement, referring to two powerful<br />

earthquakes that struck 11 provinces<br />

in southern Türkiye on Feb. 6, causing<br />

extensive damage and killing and injuring<br />

tens of thousands.<br />

Over the last year, the bank gradually<br />

lowered the interest rate from 14% to 9%<br />

and then at its last two monetary policy<br />

meetings kept the rate steady.<br />

The median forecast by economists<br />

surveyed by Anadolu Agency (AA) was<br />

a decrease in the one-week repo rate<br />

of 100 basis points, for example, a total<br />

percentage point.<br />

While 10 economists forecast, the bank<br />

will cut rates by 100 basis points, one<br />

expected a 150-basis-point decrease, and<br />

six projected no change.<br />

The bank statement noted that while<br />

economic activity data exceeded<br />

expectations, concerns about a recession<br />

in developed countries persisted due to<br />

the impact of geopolitical risks and interest<br />

rate hikes. Although supply constraints<br />

in some sectors, particularly basic food,<br />

have decreased due to Türkiye’s strategic<br />

solution tools, the impact of high global<br />

inflation on inflation expectations and<br />

international financial markets is being<br />

closely monitored, it said.<br />

Pointing out that the efforts to find<br />

solutions with new supportive applications<br />

and tools developed by the central<br />

banks for the increasing uncertainties<br />

in the financial markets continue, the<br />

committee said, “Financial markets reflect<br />

the expectations that the central banks,<br />

which raise interest rates against recession<br />

risks, will soon end their interest rate hike<br />

cycles.”<br />

It stated that while the earthquake will<br />

have a near-term impact on the economy,<br />

it is not expected to have a lasting effect.<br />

The statement highlighted that prior to<br />

the disaster, leading indicators pointed<br />

to a lively domestic demand, which was<br />

expected to result in increased growth in<br />

the first quarter of <strong>2023</strong>. The earthquake’s<br />

effects on production, consumption,<br />

employment, and expectations were<br />

comprehensively evaluated.<br />

It also noted that sustainable components<br />

in the growth composition are increasing,<br />

and tourism continues to make a strong<br />

contribution to the current account<br />

balance, exceeding expectations. However,<br />

risks to the current account balance<br />

remain due to high energy prices, weak<br />

economic activity in major export markets,<br />

and domestic consumption demand.<br />

Officials emphasized that it is important<br />

for price stability to maintain a sustainable<br />

balance of money, closely monitoring<br />

the growth rate of loans and the use of<br />

financing resources in line with economic<br />

activity.<br />

As stated in the Monetary Policy and<br />

Liraization of <strong>2023</strong>, the committee<br />

has implemented tools to support the<br />

effectiveness of the monetary transmission<br />

mechanism and will continue to use them<br />

with determination. The entire policy<br />

toolkit, especially funding channels, will be<br />

aligned with liraization targets to produce<br />

suitable financial conditions for sustainable<br />

growth.<br />

The statement emphasized that the level<br />

and trend of inflation have improved<br />

with the implementation of integrated<br />

policies, and the effects of supply-demand<br />

imbalances caused by the earthquake on<br />

inflation are being closely monitored.<br />

According to the latest data from the<br />

Turkish Statistical Institute (TurkStat),<br />

Türkiye’s annual consumer inflation fell to<br />

57.68% in January, an 11-month low.<br />

The MPC emphasized that financial<br />

support is crucial for maintaining<br />

acceleration in industrial production and<br />

increasing employment trends.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 60

London concours<br />

<strong>2023</strong> to feature<br />

spectacular<br />

Porsche RS<br />

Celebration<br />

The London Concours, presented by<br />

Montres Breguet, has announced the<br />

first exciting feature of what is set to be<br />

another stand out show in <strong>2023</strong>. June’s<br />

event – firmly established as the capital’s<br />

leading summer automotive garden party<br />

- will pay homage to one of the most<br />

iconic performance models of all time, the<br />

Porsche 911 RS.<br />

Building on the great success of previous<br />

Supercar Thursday celebrations, in <strong>2023</strong>,<br />

for one day only – Wednesday 7th June<br />

- 50 landmark cars from this most feted<br />

and thrilling of model ranges will be on<br />

display in the secluded Honourable Artillery<br />

Company grounds. Models on show will<br />

range from the seminal 2.7 RS right up to<br />

the very latest, technologically advanced<br />

examples.<br />

The London Concours’ special celebration<br />

of all things ‘Rennsport’ - German for ‘Race<br />

Sport’- will savour these carefully honed<br />

models, which, over the past half century,<br />

have continuously pushed the envelope<br />

of performance and driver involvement,<br />

all while remaining enticingly useable. The<br />

unique display will be at the centre of this<br />

summer’s event, which will run from the<br />

6th to 8th June, bringing the very finest<br />

cars to the heart of the City for London’s<br />

ultimate automotive garden party.<br />

The display will feature cars such as the<br />

first model to wear the now famous RS<br />

badge: the 2.7 RS. Launched in 1972 to<br />

homologate the Carrera RSR racer, the<br />

2.7 RS was significantly lighter than the<br />

standard car. Thanks to featherweight<br />

body panels and a stripped-out interior<br />

giving the 2.7 RS had a kerbweight of just<br />

960kg in ultra-focused ‘sport’ guise. With<br />

a 210bhp flat-six motor, performance was<br />

superb for the period, with 0-60 dispatched<br />

in 5.8 seconds, and a top speed of 152mph.<br />

Handling at high speed was improved<br />

through the addition of the now iconic<br />

‘ducktail’ spoiler, which boosted stability<br />

whilst also reducing drag. With just 1580<br />

produced, the 2.7 RS ranks as one of the<br />

most sought-after drivers’ cars of all.<br />

A year later the 3.0 RS arrived to<br />

homologate an evolved RSR racer for the<br />

’74 season. The 3.0-litre was more extreme<br />

than the 2.7 RS, designed to be just as at<br />

home on a circuit or tarmac rally stage as<br />

it was on the street. While the 2.7 was<br />

stripped out, the 3.0 RS was lighter still,<br />

thanks to the extensive use of fiberglass<br />

and thinner gauge steel for the body. It<br />

tipped the scales at just 900kg. With some<br />

230bhp on tap, it could hit 60 mph from<br />

rest in 5 seconds flat. The 3.0 RS was a<br />

high-performance, visceral road car that<br />

was also highly competitive on track. These<br />

attributes coupled with its extraordinary<br />

scarcity – just 56 were built – have seen<br />

it take on legendary status in the ensuing<br />

decades. The holy grail for Porsche<br />

collectors.<br />

Another highly-sought after RS variant<br />

is the 993 RS – the last of the air-cooled<br />

models, which was introduced in 1995.<br />

Weight saving and purity of driving<br />

experience were again at the top of the<br />

agenda. The 993 RS variant had lighter<br />

body panels and thinner glass, while also<br />

ditching the standard 993’s central locking,<br />

radio as well as electric seats, mirrors and<br />

windows. The extensive diet resulted in<br />

a weight of just 1280kg, with handling<br />

further enhanced by a limited-slip diff and<br />

fully adjustable suspension. The package<br />

was rounded off with a 300bhp 3.8-litre<br />

motor, featuring forged pistons. A serious,<br />

hugely desirable drivers’ car and a fitting<br />

swansong for air-cooled RS models.<br />

Another high-water mark for Porsche<br />

RS was the ultimate incarnation of the<br />

997 GT3 RS: the hallowed 4.0-litre car.<br />

Produced between 2011 and 2012, it was a<br />

special machine, combining the beautifully<br />

balanced, communicative handling of the<br />

’normal’ 3.8-litre car with a sensational,<br />

motorsport derived larger capacity motor.<br />

The 4.0-litre unit produced a remarkable<br />

493bhp, well over the magic 100bhp per<br />

litre threshold, and revved all the way to<br />

8500rpm, producing perhaps the finest<br />

flat-six howl in the process. Extensive use<br />

of carbon for the body kept weight down<br />

to 1360kg, enabling the limited run - just<br />

600 were made - 6-speed manual equipped<br />

machine to hit 60 mph in 3.8 seconds, and<br />

193 mph flat out. Many rank the 4.0 RS<br />

among the finest Porsches, and indeed the<br />

finest performance cars, of all.<br />

Porsche continues to push performance<br />

boundaries with its RS products; the<br />

latest ‘992’ GT3 RS is the most extreme<br />

yet. It sports outrageous aero elements<br />

– including active front and rear wings<br />

(with DRS function) – generating 860kg of<br />

downforce at 285 kph, three times that<br />

of a standard GT3. The 4.0-litre flat-six<br />

powered 518bhp machine is so extreme<br />

that it forgoes luggage space entirely – the<br />

front boot is filled with motorsport derived<br />

cooling systems. All the details add up to<br />

give startling performance; a completely<br />

stock RS lapped the fearsome Nürburgring<br />

in just 6:49.3.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 62

China handed<br />

$240B bailout<br />

loans to ‘Belt and<br />

Road’ countries<br />

China has provided $240 billion in bailout<br />

loans to 22 developing nations between<br />

2008 and 2021, soaring in recent years<br />

as more have struggled to repay loans<br />

spent building “Belt and Road” (BRI)<br />

infrastructure, a study published showed.<br />

Almost 80% of the lending was made<br />

between 2016 and 2021, mainly to middleincome<br />

countries, Argentina, Mongolia,<br />

Pakistan and Türkiye, according to the<br />

report by researchers from the World Bank,<br />

Harvard Kennedy School, AidData and the<br />

Kiel Institute for the World Economy.<br />

Around the world, BRI nations have come<br />

under strain as soaring inflation and<br />

interest rates, compounded by the lingering<br />

impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, have<br />

hurt their ability to repay debts.<br />

The report said the bailouts allow the<br />

countries to extend their loans and remain<br />

solvent.<br />

China says over 150 countries have signed<br />

up to the BRI, a trillion-dollar global<br />

infrastructure push unveiled by President Xi<br />

Jinping a decade ago.<br />

Beijing says the initiative aims to deepen<br />

friendly trade relations with other nations,<br />

particularly in the developing world.<br />

But critics have long accused China of<br />

luring lower-income countries into debt<br />

traps by offering huge, unaffordable loans.<br />

“China has developed a system of ‘Bailouts<br />

on the Belt and Road’ that help recipient<br />

countries to avoid default, and continue<br />

servicing their BRI debts, at least in the<br />

short run,” the report said.<br />

China has lent hundreds of billions of<br />

dollars to build infrastructure in developing<br />

countries. Still, lending has tailed off since<br />

2016 as many projects have failed to pay<br />

the expected financial dividends.<br />

“Beijing is ultimately trying to rescue its<br />

own banks. That’s why it has gotten into<br />

the risky business of international bailout<br />

lending,” said Carmen Reinhart, a former<br />

World Bank chief economist and one of the<br />

study’s authors.<br />

The study found that Chinese loans to<br />

countries in debt distress soared from less<br />

than 5% of its overseas lending portfolio in<br />

2010 to 60% in 2022.<br />

Argentina received the most, with $111.8<br />

billion, followed by Pakistan with $48.5<br />

billion and Egypt with $15.6 billion. Nine<br />

countries received less than $1 billion.<br />

The People’s Bank of China’s (PBOC) swap<br />

lines accounted for $170 billion of the<br />

financing, including in Suriname, Sri Lanka<br />

and Egypt. Bridge loans or balance of<br />

payments support by Chinese state-owned<br />

banks and companies was $70 billion.<br />

Rollovers of both kinds of loans were $140<br />

billion.<br />

The study was critical of some central<br />

banks potentially using the PBOC swap<br />

lines to pump up their foreign exchange<br />

reserve figures artificially.<br />

The report warned that Chinese loans tend<br />

to be more opaque compared with other<br />

international lenders of last resort – and<br />

often come at an average interest rate of<br />

5%, compared with a typical 2% rate on an<br />

International Monetary Fund (IMF) loan.<br />

Many such agreements were so-called<br />

“rollovers,” in which the same short-term<br />

loans are repeatedly extended to refinance<br />

debts about to come due.<br />

China’s rescue lending is “opaque and<br />

uncoordinated,” said Brad Parks, one of the<br />

report’s authors and director of AidData,<br />

a research lab at The College of William &<br />

Mary in the United States.<br />

China’s government hit back at the<br />

criticism, accusing “some people” of<br />

“hyping up so-called Chinese ‘debt traps’<br />

and opaque loans, and slinging mud at<br />

China, something we do not accept.”<br />

“China ... has never forced any party to<br />

borrow money, has never forced any<br />

country to pay, will not attach any political<br />

conditions to loan agreements, and does<br />

not seek any political self-interest,” foreign<br />

ministry spokesperson Mao Ning said at a<br />

regular press briefing.<br />

This month, China agreed to restructure its<br />

loans to Sri Lanka, clearing the way for an<br />

IMF bailout of the island nation that lists<br />

Beijing as its biggest bilateral creditor.<br />

The bailout loans are mainly concentrated<br />

in middle-income countries that make up<br />

four-fifths of their lending because of the<br />

risk they pose to Chinese banks’ balance<br />

sheets. In contrast, the report said that<br />

low-income countries are offered grace<br />

periods and maturity extensions.<br />

China is negotiating debt restructurings<br />

with countries including Zambia, Ghana<br />

and Sri Lanka and has been criticized for<br />

holding up the processes. It has also called<br />

on the World Bank and International<br />

Monetary Fund (IMF) to offer debt relief.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 64

First year of production for Wiesmann<br />

‘Project Thunderball’ sold out<br />

The entire first year of production of the<br />

Wiesmann ‘Project Thunderball’ – the<br />

world’s first all-electric luxury roadster –<br />

has already sold out. Since the order book<br />

opened in September last year, demand<br />

from customers worldwide has been<br />

exceptional, with the two-seater now<br />

allocated for the first year of production.<br />

Production will commence in 2024<br />

at Wiesmann’s ‘Gecko’ facility in<br />

Dülmen, Germany, where cutting-edge<br />

manufacturing technology and skilled<br />

craftsmanship come together to deliver<br />

the brand’s unique blend of precision<br />

engineering and bespoke coachbuilding<br />

expertise. First customer deliveries will<br />

begin in 2024.<br />

“We are all extremely proud that Project<br />

Thunderball – the car which heralds the<br />

return of the storied Wiesmann brand –<br />

should resonate so strongly with driving<br />

enthusiasts from around the world. We<br />

knew that combining the timeless design,<br />

luxury, and hand-crafted finish that<br />

Wiesmann is renowned for, together with<br />

a state-of-the-art electric powertrain that<br />

delivers exceptional performance, range<br />

and charging and our own technology,<br />

including the innovative regenerative<br />

braking system, would result in a truly<br />

captivating and iconic car. To have already<br />

sold out the first year of production proves<br />

the unique appeal of Project Thunderball<br />

and represents a phenomenal start to a<br />

Wiesmann’s new, electrified era,” said<br />

Roheen Berry, Owner and CEO, Wiesmann.<br />

Revealed in <strong>April</strong> 2022, the Wiesmann<br />

Project Thunderball is the world’s first<br />

all-electric luxury roadster. Featuring a<br />

classic two-seat, rear-wheel drive layout<br />

and lightweight carbon fibre construction,<br />

this is a car that delivers the performance,<br />

responsiveness, and engagement that<br />

enthusiasts demand.<br />

The German-engineered roadster’s<br />

dynamics are aided by packaging the two<br />

electric motors in a rear-mid mounted<br />

position, which have a targeted total<br />

output of 500kW (680hp) and 1,100 Nm<br />

of instant torque to deliver a targeted<br />

0-62mph (0-100km/h) acceleration time of<br />

just 2.9 seconds.<br />

Powering the motors is a state-of-theart,<br />

800-volt, 92kWh lithium-ion battery<br />

pack. This enables an exceptional targeted<br />

range of 500km (WLTP), along with the<br />

convenience of super-fast charging of up to<br />

300kW (DC).<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 66

Tevva hydrogen-electric truck clocks up<br />

350 miles in wintry range test<br />

While Tevva’s laser-guided focus remains<br />

trained on building and delivering its<br />

battery-electric 7.5t vehicle, testing and<br />

development of its hydrogen-electric<br />

counterpart continues apace.<br />

Four Tevva engineers: Charlie Cordell,<br />

Byron Dolman, Ryan Clark and Toby<br />

Hurst were doing exactly that recently,<br />

with a ‘range test’ of Tevva’s dual-energy<br />

prototype truck. The exercise saw the<br />

foursome accumulate more than 1,000km<br />

(approximately 620 miles) in the 7.5t<br />

hydrogen-electric vehicle, driving between<br />

Tevva’s London HQ and the Scottish border<br />

at Berwick-on-Tweed - England’s most<br />

northernmost town.<br />

The return journey saw the truck cover<br />

almost 350 miles alone, without needing a<br />

single stop for recharging. This was made<br />

possible by the truck’s hydrogen fuel cell<br />

which tops up the range-extended (Rex)<br />

vehicle’s lithium battery when needed.<br />

Lead Engineer, Tevva Rex, Charlie Cordell<br />

said: “It was an amazing trip and we were<br />

so pleased the truck covered so many miles<br />

on the return leg, without the need to stop<br />

for a charge.<br />

“The trip was a terrific demonstration of<br />

the range you can achieve in a truck that<br />

uses a blended system of electric and<br />

hydrogen. The freezing conditions were<br />

extremely challenging, but helpful too, in<br />

allowing us to gather important data about<br />

vehicle performance, meaning we could<br />

make tweaks here and there and tailor its<br />

development.”<br />

Temperatures rarely climbed above<br />

freezing during the trip, and at one point it<br />

dropped to minus 10.<br />

The Tevva engineers stopped off for<br />

hydrogen refuelling at Element 2 in<br />

Teesside on the first leg of the journey,<br />

as well as an earlier stop in the midlands.<br />

Element 2 is currently building a national<br />

infrastructure of hydrogen refuelling sites.<br />

Impressions from the road<br />

The company’s Chief Development Officer<br />

Dr Andrew Hagan said: “Providing the<br />

hydrogen for this significant journey is<br />

a proud moment. The superior range<br />

on this fuel cell vehicle is a comfort and<br />

reassurance for organisations ordering new<br />

vehicles and updating their fleets. We are<br />

building refuelling stations where they are<br />

needed most and removing diesel from our<br />

roads. This infrastructure will enable Tevva<br />

truck drivers to go the distance.”<br />

Engineer Ryan Clark, 25, joined Tevva two<br />

years ago after completing his engineering<br />

degree at Glasgow University. He says the<br />

exercise demonstrates the direction of<br />

traffic as far as hydrogen is concerned. “On<br />

paper, of course, the range it achieved was<br />

expected”, he said. “But it’s still a great<br />

feeling, to put the prototype together and<br />

see it blasting that kind of mileage.<br />

“What we’re doing here is exciting. I talk to<br />

friends who are working in automotiveand<br />

typically new engineers only get the chance<br />

to shadow teams working on significant<br />

projects. At Tevva, there’s a sense of<br />

empowerment, an opportunity to get your<br />

hands dirty.<br />

Graduate Engineer Toby Hurst, 24, agrees.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 68

He said: “With the distance it did, it<br />

performed extremely well – considering<br />

the conditions we faced.<br />

“We had a good laugh getting the job done<br />

too. We like to enjoy what we’re doing<br />

but we’re deadly serious about testing our<br />

vehicles and playing our part in the zeroemission<br />

revolution.”<br />

During the trip, Ryan said the futuristic<br />

truck drew lots of admiring glances<br />

from fellow travellers and just as many<br />

questions.<br />

“There was quite a bit of surprise when we<br />

told people it’s a hydrogen-electric truck”,<br />

he said. “I guess people just aren’t used to<br />

seeing one. But they will be…eventually.”<br />

Charlie added: “One person asked us if it<br />

was an electric truck and we told them<br />

about the fuel cell, they said ‘I see…makes<br />

sense’.”<br />

Tevva’s approach to hydrogen technology<br />

Tevva’s revolutionary hydrogen fuel-cell<br />

range extension technology enables its<br />

vehicles to do all the work of diesel, with<br />

total peace of mind about cost, range, and<br />

environmental impact.<br />

By adding hydrogen into the energy<br />

mix, Tevva delivers a solution that gives<br />

operators the ability to decarbonise their<br />

fleets at the pace needed by climate<br />

science and demanded by society. The<br />

company is taking a dual-energy approach<br />

to zero-emission mobility, utilising the<br />

best of battery-electric and hydrogen<br />

technology to maximise the performance<br />

of our vehicles.<br />

Tevva is an active player in helping<br />

build the battery-electric and hydrogen<br />

infrastructure ecosystem, and recognises<br />

that the speed and scalability of hydrogen<br />

refuelling systems will be crucial to<br />

adoption while keeping costs under<br />

control. As low-carbon hydrogen becomes<br />

cheaper and more widely available,<br />

hydrogen refuelling will become as<br />

convenient as diesel refuelling is today.<br />

Tevva is actively working with hydrogen and<br />

refuelling station suppliers to establish lowcarbon<br />

hydrogen services for customers<br />

and is leading the drive to zero-emissions<br />

freight and urban logistics.<br />

Tevva is committed to making hydrogen<br />

convenient, affordable and sustainable for<br />

its customers.<br />

<strong>April</strong><br />

69 <strong>2023</strong>

Over 800K Nissan SUVs recalled over key defect-linked issue<br />

Over 809,000 Nissan SUVs in the U.S. and<br />

Canada are being recalled due to a key<br />

defect that can potentially lead to engine<br />

failure, according to an announcement<br />

made. The recall covers certain Rogues<br />

from the 2014 through 2020 model years,<br />

as well as Rogue Sports from 2017 through<br />

2022. Nissan says the SUVs have jackknife<br />

folding keys that may not remain fully<br />

open. If driven with the key partially folded,<br />

a driver could touch the fob, inadvertently<br />

turning off the engine. This can cause a loss<br />

of engine power and power brakes, and the<br />

airbags might not inflate during a crash.<br />

The company says it is not aware of any<br />

crashes or injuries caused by any such<br />

issue. Nissan has not come up with a fix<br />

yet. Owners will be notified in March with<br />

an interim letter telling them not to attach<br />

anything else to the key ring. Then they will<br />

get another letter asking them to take their<br />

SUVs in for repairs. The automaker says<br />

owners with keys that will not stay in the<br />

open position should contact their dealers.<br />

VW joins e-car price war<br />

as global rivalry heats up<br />

German giant Volkswagen is set to follow<br />

Tesla’s lead with a high-profile price drop<br />

as the battle for global dominance in the<br />

electric car segment intensifies, and local<br />

challengers race ahead in key market China.<br />

A new version of Volkswagen’s flagship ID.3<br />

electric car model will go on sale from the<br />

end of March for just under 40,000 euros<br />

($42,000), the VW brand announced.<br />

That is a 3,000-euro markdown from the<br />

current ID.3 price tag, putting it on par with<br />

U.S. rival Tesla’s popular Model Y.<br />

Industry insiders see the move as a direct<br />

response to several rounds of price-cutting<br />

by the Elon Musk-owned company in<br />

recent months, including discounts of up to<br />

20 percent in Europe and the United States.<br />

In Germany, Tesla’s sales soared by more<br />

than 900 percent year-on-year in January<br />

as a result, making it the top-selling e-car in<br />

the country that month.<br />

Although the 10-brand VW group was<br />

Europe’s leading e-car manufacturer in<br />

2022 with 352,000 vehicles sold, Tesla’s<br />

audacious markdowns have forced the<br />

German firm’s hand, said industry analyst<br />

Ferdinand Dudenhoeffer.<br />

“Volkswagen sees how big the threat is<br />

from Tesla,” he told AFP.<br />

The automaker will have “no choice” but<br />

to enter “a price war” to defend its place<br />

in the hotly contested market for batterypowered<br />

vehicles, even if that means profit<br />

margins take a hit for a while.<br />

VW group CEO Oliver Blume has so far<br />

ruled out a general price drop on all<br />

e-cars, but the topic is bound to come<br />

up when the group presents its 2022<br />

financial results. But Musk is not VW’s only<br />

headache. In China, the world’s largest car<br />

market, the industry’s electrification has<br />

shifted into higher gear and VW is rapidly<br />

falling behind domestic competitors.<br />

The Asian giant currently accounts for<br />

some 40 percent of VW group sales,<br />

mostly vehicles with traditional internal<br />

combustion engines, giving it a market<br />

share in China of 16 percent.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 72

Türkiye issues quake rebuild rules as<br />

new housing construction starts<br />

Türkiye issued regulations for earthquake<br />

rebuilding work in the southeastern region<br />

as the government focuses on building new<br />

homes for the millions who need rehousing<br />

after this month’s devastating tremors.<br />

Marking the first significant endeavor,<br />

the government announced it started<br />

construction on 855 housing units in<br />

Gaziantep, one of the 11 provinces affected<br />

by what is described as the worst disaster<br />

in Türkiye’s modern history.<br />

The magnitude 7.7 and 7.6 quakes struck<br />

on Feb. 6, killing more than 43,500 people<br />

in Türkiye and nearly 6,000 in neighbouring<br />

Syria, and destroying 164,000 buildings,<br />

containing some 520,000 apartments.<br />

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has<br />

pledged to rebuild homes and the<br />

southeastern disaster zone within a year.<br />

Many survivors have either left the<br />

southern region or have been settled<br />

in tents, container homes and other<br />

government-sponsored accommodations.<br />

Erdoğan had said the government would<br />

cover the rent of those who leave quakehit<br />

cities. “We will rebuild these buildings<br />

within one year and hand them back to<br />

citizens,” he said. Around 865,000 people<br />

live in tents and 23,500 in container homes,<br />

while 376,000 are in student dormitories<br />

and public guesthouses outside the<br />

earthquake zone, Erdoğan said .<br />

The U.N. Development Program (UNDP)<br />

said it estimated that the destruction had<br />

left 1.5 million people homeless, with<br />

500,000 new homes needed.<br />

According to a presidential decree<br />

published in the country’s Official Gazette,<br />

companies or charities can help build new<br />

homes in the region.<br />

Under the new regulations, individuals,<br />

institutions and organizations will be<br />

able to build residences and workplaces<br />

that they can donate to the urbanization<br />

ministry, and those properties will then be<br />

handed to those in need, the decree said.<br />

First homes<br />

After necessary ground investigations,<br />

the state-run Housing Development<br />

Administration (TOKI) has initiated the<br />

construction of the first homes in districts<br />

of Gaziantep province, Environment,<br />

Urbanization, and Climate Change Minister<br />

Murat Kurum.<br />

“Our entire effort is focused on returning<br />

our citizens to their homes as soon as<br />

possible. We are starting work immediately<br />

in areas where we have signed contracts<br />

and completed ground surveys,” Kurum<br />

wrote on Twitter.<br />

“We have broken ground for the 855<br />

housing units that we will build in the first<br />

stage in Nurdağı and Islahiye with the hand<br />

of TOKI.”<br />

Over the past two decades, TOKI built<br />

around 1 million quake-resilient houses,<br />

while the private sector built slightly more<br />

than 2 million homes during the same<br />

period, Kurum said earlier.<br />

He said the government would consider<br />

detailed geological surveys in its city<br />

reconstruction plans and that tenders<br />

would be held.<br />

“For several projects, tenders and<br />

contracts have been done. The process is<br />

moving very fast,” a government official<br />

told Reuters, speaking on condition of<br />

anonymity, adding there would be no<br />

compromise on safety.<br />

The initial plan is to build 200,000<br />

apartments and 70,000 village houses at<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 74

the cost of at least $15 billion, he said.<br />

The bill to rebuild houses, transmission<br />

lines, and infrastructure could be around<br />

$25 billion, Wall Street bank JPMorgan<br />

said in a report. Another report from the<br />

business association TÜRKONFED estimated<br />

damages to housing at $70.8 billion.<br />

Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu said more<br />

than 600,000 apartments and 150,000<br />

commercial premises had suffered at least<br />

moderate damage.<br />

“Our cities will be built in the right places;<br />

our children will live in stronger cities. We<br />

know what kind of test we are facing, and<br />

we will come out of this stronger,” he told<br />

state broadcaster TRT Haber.<br />

The UNDP said it had requested $113.5<br />

million from the $1 billion in funds<br />

appealed for by the United Nations, adding<br />

that it would focus this money on clearing<br />

away mountains of rubble.<br />

The UNDP estimates that the disaster had<br />

produced between 116 million and 210<br />

million tons of rubble, compared with 13<br />

million tons of rubble after the earthquake<br />

in northwest Türkiye in 1999.<br />

Investigation widens Separately, Justice<br />

Minister Bekir Bozdağ said 171 people had<br />

been arrested and 77 more faced detention<br />

as part of an investigation into collapsed<br />

buildings in the earthquake area related to<br />

violations of building codes.<br />

“Everyone involved will be held<br />

accountable in front of courts. Everyone<br />

will be punished according to their<br />

responsibility,” Bozdağ told private<br />

broadcaster CNN Türk late. He said legal<br />

changes could be needed for crimes<br />

regarding construction permits and said<br />

the authorities should discuss more brutal<br />

punishments and deterrents for violating<br />

zoning rules, which dictate where and how<br />

buildings can be more safely built.<br />

Soylu also said authorities were widening<br />

an investigation into contractors suspected<br />

of violating safety standards and<br />

multiplying the scale of devastation.<br />

He said 564 suspects had been identified,<br />

and many more were still under<br />

investigation. In Antakya, Hatay, Saeed<br />

Sleiman Ertoğlu, 56, loaded up what<br />

remained of his stock from his waterpipe<br />

shop that was not damaged in the two<br />

massive earthquakes on Feb. 6, followed by<br />

another strong quake two weeks later.<br />

“The glassware was stunning, more than<br />

usual, but then we had this (earthquake),<br />

and it all got ruined,” he told Reuters<br />

after his home and shop survived the first<br />

tremors but not the latter. However, he<br />

estimated that 5% of his merchandise<br />

survived.<br />

<strong>April</strong><br />

<strong>2023</strong><br />


Watt eCV1 Unveiled: The Foundation Of Future<br />

Low-To-Medium Volume Electric Light Commercial Vehicles<br />

Watt Electric Vehicle Company (WEVC),<br />

a pioneer in the design, engineering, and<br />

manufacture of low-to-medium volume<br />

EVs, both under its own brand and for third<br />

parties, today reveals a unique lightweight<br />

and efficient chassis-cab product set to<br />

provide the foundation for next-generation<br />

electric light commercial vehicles.<br />

Designed for production of up to 5000<br />

vehicles per annum, the innovative and<br />

highly flexible 3.5-tonne cab and chassis<br />

unit, codenamed WATT eCV1, enables a<br />

wide range of electric commercial vehicle<br />

designs, facilitating mission-specific models<br />

which meet customers’ particular fleet<br />

requirements.<br />

The first of multiple commercial vehicle<br />

offerings to come from WEVC, the eCV1<br />

uses the company’s breakthrough,<br />

proprietary PACES architecture, a<br />

sophisticated yet cost-effective modular<br />

electric vehicle platform. Developed to<br />

support commercial vehicle manufacturers,<br />

specialist vehicle converters and fleet<br />

operators in the transition to an electric<br />

future, PACES complies with ISO regulations<br />

and exceeds stringent European Small<br />

Series Type Approval safety standards.<br />

It’s ’cell-to-chassis’ system means batteries<br />

are integrated to the primary structure<br />

(rather than having a separate battery<br />

pack), thus optimising stiffness, minimising<br />

weight and maximising payload. As a<br />

result, the clean sheet design means the<br />

eCV1 has none of the structural, weight<br />

and packaging compromises inherent<br />

in the majority of electric LCV designs,<br />

many of which having been converted<br />

from ICE drivetrains and which are further<br />

constrained by traditional high volume<br />

manufacturing processes.<br />

The eCV1 range features a central driving<br />

position which allows a safer kerbside exit<br />

for the operator, whichever side of the road<br />

the vehicle is driving or parked on. The<br />

cabin can be configured as a one-, two- or<br />

three-seater vehicle, with the large glass<br />

house providing superb visibility making<br />

the vehicle safer to drive and easier to<br />

manoeuvre and park. A further benefit of<br />

the central driving position is that it has<br />

allowed the A-pillars to be repositioned<br />

inboard, thus reducing frontal area and<br />

drag, a key metric in designing an efficient<br />

electric commercial vehicle. The unique<br />

platform design creates generous full<br />

standing height headroom, facilitating easy<br />

ingress and egress and a ‘walk through<br />

cabin’ option that is ideally suited for urban<br />

delivery vehicles.<br />

The intrinsically lightweight PACES<br />

architecture results in a chassis cab with a<br />

kerb weight from just 1750kg, delivering<br />

class leading payload and range in the 3.5t<br />

and 4.25t segments.<br />

“I’m delighted to reveal the WATT eCV1.<br />

Our unique approach to addressing the<br />

challenges facing the industry enables the<br />

transition to mission-specific, yet costeffective<br />

electric light commercial vehicles.<br />

We have embraced circular economy<br />

principles in the design, manufacture, and<br />

operation of our commercial vehicles<br />

to specifically align with increasingly<br />

stringent corporate and fleet operator<br />

sustainability responsibilities. The industry<br />

is rapidly moving to a zero-emission<br />

future, working with WEVC and our eCV1<br />

platform will allow customers to benefit<br />

from electrified commercial vehicles<br />

tailored to exactly meet their needs,”<br />

explains Neil Yates, Founder and CEO of<br />

Watt Electric Vehicles.<br />

Advanced e-platform technology,<br />

manufactured in the UK<br />

Flexible, scaleable, lightweight and costeffective,<br />

WEVC’s PACES architecture<br />

(Passenger And Commercial EV<br />

Skateboard) features bespoke aluminium<br />

lightweight extrusions and ultra-precise<br />

laser-cut and CNC-folded pieces which<br />

ingeniously interlock and bond together, a<br />

technical innovation known as FlexTech®.<br />

Designed for low-to-medium volume<br />

manufacture, it can be applied to<br />

passenger and commercial vehicles<br />

including FWD, RWD and AWD<br />

configurations – enabling WEVC to rapidly<br />

engineer a broad range of lightweight<br />

automotive products. With a capacity of<br />

5,000 units per annum, the company’s<br />

new UK manufacturing facility will be<br />

home to its light commercial EV range.<br />

From the outset, WEVC’s business to<br />

business services have included ‘white<br />

label’ build provision for third party<br />

manufacturers and OEMs, in parallel with<br />

its own-branded commercial EVs.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 78

Türkiye slaps<br />

40% extra tax on EV<br />

imports from China<br />

Türkiye has imposed a 40% additional tariff on imports of motor<br />

vehicles with only electric motors from China, a presidential<br />

decision published in the country’s Official Gazette showed.<br />

The implementation came as Türkiye prepares to roll out the<br />

country’s first domestically produced electric car, Togg.<br />

Starting the project in 2018, Togg began the mass production<br />

phase in October as President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan inaugurated<br />

the long-anticipated massive manufacturing plant in the<br />

northwestern province of Bursa.<br />

Togg will debut in the market in the first quarter of <strong>2023</strong> with<br />

the SUV, its first smart device in the C segment, after the<br />

completion of homologation tests.<br />

To encourage the success of the project, the government has<br />

provided various forms of support, including tax reductions,<br />

land allocation, favorable borrowing rates and a commitment<br />

to purchasing 30,000 vehicles annually until the close of 2035.<br />

In 2022, sales of electric cars in Türkiye surged by almost threefold,<br />

reaching 7,733 units, due in part to lower consumer tax<br />

rates when compared to traditional combustion-engine cars.<br />

Despite this impressive growth, electric vehicles only account<br />

for slightly over 1% of the country’s overall passewnger car<br />

market. The sales of passenger cars and light commercial<br />

vehicles in the country rose 63.4% year-over-year in January<br />

to 81,148 units, the Automotive Distributors and Mobility<br />

Association said .<br />

In the January-February period, sales increased 50.4% year-over-year,<br />

the association added.<br />

<strong>April</strong> <strong>2023</strong> 79

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