Jaguar Land Rover revealed its new program Wednesday called the “future skills programme,” aimed at retraining 29,000 of its workforce to acquire the skills to develop, manufacture, and service modern luxury electric vehicles. The British luxury automaker has significant plans to introduce all Jaguar Land Rover vehicles in EV form by 2030, making it critical that its employees are on board for the transition.
In February 2021, Jaguar Land Rover announced a major initiative called “Reimagine,” revealing the automaker’s next chapter in its rich history.
The Reimagine strategy involves converting Jaguar to an all-electric brand by 2025, while Land Rover follows with a mostly electric lineup by the end of the decade. Jaguar introduced its first fully electric vehicle, the I-PACE, in 2018, a beautifully designed SUV that drives more like a car, featuring decent range and charging capacity.
The I-PACE won several awards in 2019, including World Car of the Year, World Green Award, and World Car Design of the Year.
On the other hand, Land Rover plans to release six pure EVs by the end of the decade, with the first fully electric Range Rover coming in 2024.
The luxury automaker has taken several steps this year to ease the transition to EVs as it phases out gas-powered vehicles. In August, Jaguar Land Rover unveiled plans for a “next-generation” EV testing facility featuring an electronic rolling road to test vehicle performance at speed.
More recently, on September 21, a report from Autocar UK revealed Jaguar Land Rover began converting its Halewood facility to speed up its EV transition. The plant is home to iconic models like the Land Rover Discovery Sport and Range Rover Evoque, both due for an electric upgrade, though it’s not clear if they will continue being manufactured here.
To ease the transition to EVs, Jaguar Land Rover is introducing a global “upskilling drive” to retrain 29,000 of its employees.
Jaguar Land Rover retraining workers for an all-out EV transition
Jaguar Land Rover unveiled its “future skills programme” Wednesday to prepare its technicians and dealers for a rapid transition to EVs.
The automaker says over 60% of JLR and its global franchised retailer technicians, about 29,000 total, will receive training to design, manufacture, and service electric vehicles over the next few years.
The majority will be retrained this year to support the automaker EV push over the coming years. Over 9,500 apprentices are in training as JLR plans to hire another 1,200 in 2023.
Jaguar Land Rover’s industrial operations executive director, Barbara Bergmeier, talks about the automaker’s EV ambitions and how the new program can help, stating:
Our plans to electrify our product portfolio are running at pace, and we are rapidly scaling up our future skills training programme to ensure we have the right talent to deliver the world’s most desirable modern luxury electric vehicles.
Developing the skilled global workforces needed to design, build and maintain the vehicles of the future is foundational. I’m proud to say we are committing to help plug the electric and digital skills gap with a comprehensive, global training programme, which will power charge electrification both here in the UK and abroad.
On top of its technicians, Jaguar Land Rover plans to train thousands of engineers, production employees, and others currently working on gas-powered vehicles.
Jaguar Land Rover strives to achieve net carbon zero across its supply chain and operations by 2039, with an extensive roadmap for getting there. The automaker claims electrification is the focal point of its climate initiatives.
With effective plans over the next several years to introduce new fully electric models and become a leader in the industry, Jaguar Land Rover is approaching it strategically.
Retraining employees is the first step. Then, when the time comes, the transition to electric vehicles will be much smoother.
Electric vehicles are much more sophisticated than their gas-powered counterparts, making it crucial for automakers to train their employees on the differences.
JLR is not the only automaker doing so. Luxury rival Mercedes-Benz also launched an employee EV training program in August to support its own transition, though the initiative is more aimed at the selling experience than the manufacturing process.
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Tesla (TSLA) surges on strong sales in China
Tesla (TSLA) stock is surging amid data coming out of China, showing that the automaker will likely deliver a strong quarter in this important market.
At the time of writing, Tesla’s stock is up 6%, while the market is up about 1%.
This surge comes after the China Merchants Bank International released car insurance registration data.
The data shows 106,915 new Tesla vehicles registered in China between January 1 to March 19.
It is tracking ahead of the last quarter, which was a record quarter for Tesla in China, with 122,038 cars delivered.
With almost two weeks left in the quarter and Tesla often delivering more vehicles over the last few weeks of a quarter, the automaker is expected to beat its latest record in China.
China is a critical market for Tesla and electric vehicles in general. Tesla’s performance in China often makes the difference in whether it has a good quarter.
The increase in sales comes after Tesla slashed prices globally. The price cuts came to China first in early January.
Everything points to Tesla having a great quarter for deliveries in Q1 2023.
However, the attention is going to be on Tesla’s gross margin. The price cuts successfully boost sales, but they will negatively affect its gross margin.
The good news for Tesla is that it had industry-leading gross margins. They are large enough to eat the price cuts, but the investors are hoping for Tesla to still be in the double digits gross margin.
In Q4 2022, Tesla had a record of 405,000 deliveries globally. Investors are hoping for Tesla to beat that – likely only marginally.
The company has the capacity to produce about 2 million vehicles in 2023, and it wants to 10 times that by 2030. Not many people outside of Tesla fans believe that it is possible, but there weren’t many people who believed Tesla would get to a capacity of 1 million people. But it did – and more.
The world saw a record 9.6% growth in renewables in 2022
By the end of 2022, global renewable generation capacity amounted to 3372 gigawatts (GW), growing the stock of renewable power by 295 GW or 9.6%, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).
Renewables produced an overwhelming 83% of all power capacity added last year.
Renewable Capacity Statistics 2023, released today by IRENA, shows that renewable energy continues to grow at record levels despite global uncertainties, confirming the downward trend of fossil fuels.
Francesco La Camera, director-general of IRENA, said:
This continued record growth shows the resilience of renewable energy amid the lingering energy crisis.
The strong business case of renewables coupled with enabling policies has sustained an upward trend of their share in the global energy mix year on year. But annual additions of renewable power capacity must grow three times the current level by 2030, if we want to stay on a pathway limiting global warming to 1.5C.
While many countries increased their renewable capacity in 2022, the significant growth of renewables is concentrated in Asia, the US, and Europe. IRENA reports that almost half of all new capacity in 2022 was added in Asia, resulting in a total of 1.63 terawatts (TW) of renewable capacity by 2022. China was the largest contributor, adding 141 GW to Asia’s new capacity.
Renewables in Europe and North America grew by 57.3 GW and 29.1 GW, respectively. Africa saw an increase of 2.7 GW, slightly above 2021. Oceania continued its double-digit growth with an expansion of 5.2 GW, and South America had a capacity expansion of 18.2 GW. The Middle East recorded its highest increase in renewables on record, with 3.2 GW of new capacity added in 2022, an increase of 12.8%.
Although hydropower accounted for the largest share of the global total renewable generation capacity with 1250 GW, solar and wind continued to dominate new generating capacity. Together, both technologies contributed 90% to the share of all new renewable capacity in 2022. Solar led with a 22% (191 GW) increase, followed by wind, which increased its generating capacity by 9% (75 GW).
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Watch Hyundai’s new AI-based robot charge an IONIQ 6 [Video]
Hyundai revealed Tuesday it has developed an EV charging robot that automatically plugs in using a 3D camera-based AI algorithm. Watch how it works on the IONIQ 6 in Hyundai’s latest video below.
The Hyundai Motor Group, including the Kia and Genesis brands, became the third largest automaker globally, surpassing GM, Nissan, and Stellantis in annual volume in 2022. But it didn’t happen by chance.
Hyundai took a risk, unveiling a progressive new approach with its first dedicated electric vehicle, the boldly designed IONIQ 5.
The IONIQ 5’s success has surprised even its top leaders, attracting premium buyers from other brands. As Michael Cole, president and CEO at Hyundai Europe, explains, “after the success of the IONIQ 5,” the company is more willing to take bolder risks.
Hyundai carried the unique design to the IONIQ 6 electric sedan released last July as one of the most efficient and aerodynamic EVs to hit the market.
Together, the IONIQ 5 and IONIQ 6 recorded over 100,000 sales globally last year as Hyundai accelerated its EV rollout.
Hyundai plans to change the game with another bold idea, an EV charging robot.
Hyundai’s EV charging robot charges an IONIQ 6
The Hyundai Motor Group revealed its latest innovation Tuesday, the automatic charging robot (ACR) for electric vehicles.
The ACR is a one-arm robot that uses a 3D camera-based AI algorithm to plug into EVs and charge them automatically. Check out how it works with an IONIQ 6 in the video below.
The video starts with the IONIQ 6 autonomously parking itself via Remote Smart Parking Assist (RSPA) with the wireless charging cover control opening by itself.
The robot then gets to work with charging port recognition to detect where to plug in the vehicle. Once the charging is complete, the robot removes the charger, returning to its upright position while closing the car’s charging port.
The company’s robotics lab considered many variables for the ACR, including the car’s parking spot, the weather, potential obstacles, and the weight of the charging cable for an ultimate experience.
As a result, the robot can operate in all environments with a waterproof and dustproof grade of IP65 and can even detect possible accidents.
You will be able to see Hyundai’s newly released ACR at the 2023 Seoul Mobility Show from March 31 to April 9.
Hyundai isn’t the only one developing a robot to charge your electric vehicle automatically. Ford tested a robotic EV charger to help the disabled, elderly, and others who need assistance plugging in.
Ram also unveiled an autonomous robot charger for its first electric pickup, the Ram 1500 REV. Tesla tossed around the idea of a “snake charger” several years ago.
The point of the matter is robot chargers likely won’t serve a purpose on a large scale but for those that need it (disabled, elderly, fleets), it could potentially be helpful.
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