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All-new Kia EV3 makes global debut, sales start July 2024

Kia said it plans to first introduce the EV3 in South Korea in July 2024, followed by launches in Europe and other parts of the world. Prices are expected to be between $35,000 to $50,000, with the South Korean carmaker looking to sell 200,000 units in its first year.

The Kia EV9 battery-electric crossover made huge waves as the South Korean automaker’s flagship electric vehicle (EV).

The large sport-utility vehicle made boxy cars cool again, especially with the company’s distinctive “Tiger nose” grill and futuristic styling cues. But for those who need less bulk, the EV9’s little brother made its global debut recently.

Kia president and CEO Ho Sung Song formally introduced the Kia EV3 at an online press conference. This all-new model aims to take on the highly competitive compact crossover market, all while sporting the performance and advanced technology we have all come to expect from EVs.

Kia executive vice president Karim Habib, who is also the brand’s design chief, said the EV3 was designed using the curiously named “Opposites United” philosophy that combines a wide range of natural and modern styling cues to produce a truly distinctive and cohesive whole.

Put another way, the EV3 takes heavily after its larger sibling, starting with the familiar “Tiger Face” flanked by vertically arranged LED headlights and intricate LED daytime running lights.

Much like the EV9, the all-new EV3 gets a commodious cabin that incorporates the latest in-car entertainment technology.

The dashboard is dominated by the sleek widescreen display – including a 12.3-inch cluster, a 5-inch air-conditioning panel, and another 12.3-inch AVN display – that incorporates seamless touch operation of the EV3’s various functions. The screen also extends to the center of the dashboard, giving the front-seat passenger access to entertainment and navigation features.

Adding to the upscale interior experience are the various streamable content through Kia’s Premium Streaming service, delivered via LG’s Automotive Content Platform powered by webOS. Kia also offers arcade games, allowing occupants to enjoy in-car gaming.

The immersive experience is further enhanced by the sound quality of the EV3’s Harman Kardon audio system, which Kia claims delivers an experience akin to a home cinema.

The EV3 rides on the company’s Electric Global Modular Platform and is available in two variants.

One is the Standard model with a 58.3-kWh battery pack, while the Long Range model gets an 81.4-kWh battery. The latter allows for a maximum WLTP range of 600 kilometers on a single full charge, with Kia’s advanced Vehicle Charging Management System enabling the battery to charge from 10 to 80 percent in approximately 31 minutes.

Both models get an electric motor that sends 201 horsepower and 283 Newton-meters of torque through the front wheels. Kia claims a 0 to 100 km/h time of 7.5 seconds and a maximum speed of 170 km/h.

The EV3 is the first EV model to feature Kia’s A.I. Assistant technology, which had recently made its debut on the Kia K4 compact sedan.

In addition, the EV3 is the first model to benefit from Kia’s new i-Pedal 3.0. This allows the driver to adjust the level of regenerative braking according to their preference, enabling less taxing one-pedal driving.

And you can also use your EV3 as a giant power bank because it is the first compact EV SUV with Vehicle-to-Load (V2L) charging. It can power external devices like laptops, small refrigerators, coffee machines and hairdryers.

Decline in Motorbike and Three-Wheeler Sales in Pakistan

The Pakistan Automobile Manufacturing Association (PAMA) reported a notable decline of 6.49 percent in the sale of motorbikes and three-wheelers during the first ten months of the fiscal year 2023-24 compared to the corresponding period of the previous year.
From July to April 2023-24, a total of 941,406 units were sold, reflecting a decrease from 1,006,839 units sold during the same months in 2022-23.
The decline in sales was particularly evident in several prominent motorcycle brands. Honda motorcycles experienced a decrease of 2.78 percent, with sales dropping from 843,219 units to 819,752 units. Suzuki motorcycles witnessed a significant decline of 51.55 percent, from 28,091 units to 13,610 units. Similarly, Yamaha and Road Prince motorbike sales also decreased, marking declines of 47.70 percent and 45.28 percent, respectively.
In contrast, United Auto three-wheelers recorded a notable surge in sales, increasing by 57.09 percent from 1,240 units to 1,948 units. Sazgar three-wheelers also witnessed a substantial growth of 35.88 percent, rising from 8,267 units to 11,234 units.
However, the sales of United Auto motorcycles declined by 15.33 percent, from 82,069 units to 69,480 units. Qingqi three-wheelers experienced a decrease of 19.87 percent, and Road Prince three-wheelers saw a decline of 26.87 percent.
The data underscores the challenges facing the automotive industry in Pakistan, attributed to various factors such as economic conditions, consumer preferences, and market dynamics. Despite the mixed performance across different segments, the decline in overall sales suggests a need for industry stakeholders to reassess strategies and adapt to evolving market trends to stimulate growth and competitiveness in the sector.

Can Punjab’s Automotive Plants Bounce Back From the Financial Onslaught of COVID-19?

The Covid-19 pandemic took the world by storm soon after its first reported case in December 2019 in Wuhan, China. The study of this novel’s economic impacts has been coined with the term “coronomics”. The outbreak was accompanied by “loss in stock markets, loss in travelling and shipping industry, the burden on interest rates and consumer isolation.” (Khan, 2020). China is a major producer of automobile parts, including those assembled and sold most widely in Pakistan. Thus, due to supply chain disruptions caused by global lockdowns, the industry sank into exponential loss following the rise of the pandemic.

Additionally, due to the failure to repay sales tax proceeds, the manufacturing industry faced a drastic liquidity shortage. When demand began to rise in the markets after the lockdown was lifted, the production sites found themselves unable to meet the sudden surge. Thus, production losses also began to occur. However, perhaps most importantly, during COVID-19, the “Pakistani rupee [devalued] against [the] US dollar”, and “additional custom duties [were imposed]” on automobiles, thus hindering growth and lowering profit margins within the industry (Mufti, 2022).  At the same time, the burden of severe inflation and rising oil and gas prices also led to a market shift away from the purchase of automobiles.

Moreover, the first wave of this virus was accompanied by disastrous economic effects as “unemployment rose by 34.1% while mean income fell by 42%” (Arab News, 2021). These factors added to the growing shift in consumer tastes away from automotive purchases. Lastly, the pandemic led to an unprecedented increase in the demand for electronics, a significant component of which is semiconductor chips. Supply chain issues and the inability to cope with the sudden surge led to semiconductor shortages. Since safety systems within cars, including airbag deployment, anti-lock braking systems (ABS), and stability control, depend on this commodity, the effects on the automotive industry are drastic.

Considering these factors, we must reflect on the leadership decisions made as pandemic restrictions were eased to strategize for the future. More employees began to work from home, and thousands had to be let go to ensure factories were not overcrowded and to minimise costs as little to no revenue was being generated. “For supply chain resilience, the firms increased the inventory turnover ratio and recruited local firms as suppliers to prevent the supply shortage” (Kaeo-Tad, 2021). Companies also began to invest in new technologies and digitalisation of work to at least a partial extent. Many believe that COVID-19 “accelerated trends that were already in motion, ranging from increased automation to supply chain assessments to workplace and workforce changes.” (Moutray, C., 2020) Therefore, a ‘new normal’ for the automotive industry came with team structure and working methods changes. Self-contained teams are perhaps the most distinct difference in organisational structure; they have clearly defined tasks and are as different from each other as possible. Although they may be fruitful in the future, their short-term effects risk reducing company output and agility. Therefore, to adjust to this new landscape and recover from the financial onslaught that the virus brought, “firms will need to think strategically about where they source their products” (Moutray, C., 2020). Thus, there must be more domestic production and accelerated use of new technologies. Lastly, companies must use this opportunity to “train employees by upskilling, reskilling and providing new skills” (Kaeo-Tad, 2021). It is crucial to continue using the widespread automation of managerial tasks and upgraded telecommunication that became common during the pandemic. These resources will aid reasoning policy responses and help “prepare for potential disruptive events in the future” (Kaeo-Tad, 2021).

The key to surviving these disruptions is through leadership, experience, and technology. This entails “putting business continuity plans and risk management plans into action”(Moutray, C., 2020). Risk management plans entail ensuring “supply chain viability during long-term crises” (Moutray, C., 2020).  This can be done using “a combination of repurposing, intertwining, scalability, and substitution. The proposed conceptual framework consists of three constructs, namely adapting supply chains and operations, rethinking sourcing strategy, and building intertwined supply networks, as well as five viability capabilities, including adaptability, agility, flexibility, collaboration, and visibility.” Supply chain managers can use the framework “as a guidance for creating supply chain viability using adaptation-based principles.” (Chervenkova, T. and Ivanov, D., 2023) One may take the example of the American automobile manufacturer – Ford. Following the spread of the coronavirus, Ford made use of a hybrid adaptation strategy, allowing it to repurpose its resources and integrate with other supply chains at the ecosystem level. Additionally, one may also look at Tesla’s supply chain model. Their in-house manufacturing of spare parts, including battery packs and electric engines, sets them apart from other automotive manufacturers who outsourced the production of such components before the pandemic. This allowed Tesla to have direct control over their production and avoid possible delivery problems in their supply chain network while the rest of the industry was in shambles. Thus, to avoid future problems in supply chain processes, it is imperative that Pakistan’s automotive manufacturers adapt to redesigning the infrastructure by encouraging in-house production of individual parts and using advanced digital technologies. This would also ease the burden on the country’s economy and help ease inflation by virtue of reduced imports.

According to the Pakistan Association of Parts and Accessories Manufacturers (PAPAAM), “car prices have inched up by 149% in last five years … whereas car parts prices have seen a jump of 33% to 112%” (Faruq, O. 2023) This rise in prices is a direct result of increased taxes and customs duties. By producing and sourcing raw materials locally, the costs of inputs would decrease significantly. This would, in turn, reflect on the final price, leading to increased demand. On the other hand, while the pandemic did escalate the turmoil that the automotive industry is in, the state of the economy has also affected the industry significantly. Both of the price hike factors discussed above are a result of general economic instability in the nation. The pandemic significantly escalated the effects of political instability and energy insecurity on the automotive industry. Therefore, to bounce back from the financial onslaught, the government must take steps to stabilise the economy. This includes deregulating the energy sector, decreasing dependence on foreign debt, and curtailing widespread corruption (Roberts, J.M. and Sattar, H., 2015). Perhaps the most important of these steps is that pertaining to reliance on foreign funding. The government must reduce its spending and focus on increasing revenues through taxation. This can be done by “broadening the tax base…bringing the informal business sector into the tax system, … [and decreasing] tax evasion through tougher law enforcement” (Roberts, J.M. and Sattar, H., 2015). Expansion of the tax base would lead to leniency in hefty taxes placed on the sale of automobiles. Thus increasing demand with lower prices. Lastly, the deregulation of the distribution of power generation would lead to more predictable electricity rates. Currently, firms depend on alternative sources to meet electricity requirements as government supplies are often unreliable. Therefore, deregulation would reduce raw costs for the industry – making production less costly and encouraging customers to purchase. 

In conclusion, in order to troubleshoot the effects of the novel coronavirus on the automotive industry one must seek risk management, adaptive and business continuity plans. This may entail locally producing and sourcing of raw materials and easily adapting to changes in market conditions. However, firms must also assess the economic landscape in order to combat heavy taxation and customs fees. Although adaptation is possible though the supply chain management plans detailed above, it may prove to be infeasible due to deep rooted corruption within the government

References

Arab News PK. (2021a). Pakistan unemployment rose 34.1%, mean income fell 42% during COVID-19 first wave — study. [online] Available at: https://www.arabnews.pk/node/1837961/pakistan.

Chervenkova, T. and Ivanov, D., 2023. Adaptation strategies for building supply chain viability: A case study analysis of the global automotive industry re-purposing during the COVID-19 pandemic. Transportation Research Part E: Logistics and Transportation Review, 177, p.103249.

Kaeo-Tad, N., Jeenanunta, C., Chumnumporn, K., Nitisahakul, T. and Sanprasert, V., 2021. Resilient manufacturing: Case studies in Thai automotive industries during the COVID-19 pandemic. Engineering Management in Production and Services, 13(3), pp.99-113.

Khan, M.F., Ali, S. and Aftab, N., 2020. The coronomics and world economy: Impacts on Pakistan. Electronic Research Journal of Social Sciences and Humanities, 2.

Faruq, O. (2023). True Story Behind the Car Price Hikes in Pakistan. [online] PakWheels Blog. Available at: https://www.pakwheels.com/blog/true-story-behind-the-car-price-hikes-in-pakistan/ [Accessed 17 May 2024].

Moutray, C., (2020). In recovery mode: Manufacturers try to bounce back after COVID-19 disruptions. Business Economics, 55, pp.240–252.

Mufti, A. (2022). A Framework for Sustainable Recovery from Pandemic and Its Policy Implication in Pakistan. SSRN Electronic Journal. Doi:https://doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4155947.

Roberts, J.M. and Sattar, H., 2015. Pakistan’s Economic Disarray and how to Fix it. Heritage Foundation.

This exclusive research article has been published in Automark Magazine’s June-2024 printed edition too.

PEF elects its new executive committee in Qatar

The Pakistan Engineers Forum (PEF), convened an oath-taking ceremony to inaugurate the newly elected executive committee, for 2024 – 2026 in Qatar on last month.

The office-bearers are: Arshad Hussain Hashmi (president), Ahmed Javaid (vice-president). Ahsan lqbal (general secretary), Jaffar Iqbal (treasurer), Omer Faheem (information secretary), Rabat latif (joint secretary). The elected members are Syed Faiz Shah, Fezl Nadeem, Nahid Ali Ahmad, Junaid Mahar and Rafaqat Baig.

In his inaugural address, the newly appointed president Hashmi, expressed gratitude to the out -going president, Riyaz A Bakali and the preceding executive committee for their steadfast dedication and exemplary leadership during the previous term. “We are committed to upholding the core values of PEF while also exploring Innovative avenues to enhance the professional and personal growth of our members remarked Hashmi.

Bakali, In his farewell speech, lauded the achievements accomplished during his tenure, emphasising expansion d PEE’s outreach, the augmentation of professional development initiatives and the cultivation of a culture rooted in continues learning and excellence.

 “Our journey has been a testament to collective endeavor and unwavering commitment. I take immense pride in our collective accomplishments and have full confidence that the new leadership will further fortify this legacy;  stated Bakali.

The advisory board members Ajmal and Javed Iqbal extended gratitude to the outgoing president and executive committee while Chairman Hamid Rasul, presented the profiles of the newly appointed advisers.

Mansoor Rizvi meet Counsel General of Italy Mr. Danilo Giurdanella

Engr. Mansoor Rizvi, one of the advisors of Automark and Country Manager of Case NewHolland (CNH) met with the Counsel General of Italy Mr. Danilo Giurdanella on the occasion of the meet and greet party organized by Mr. Arif Qasim of MAQ International in the honor of a newly appointed Ambassador of Italy in Pakistan H.E Marilina Armellin at the local hotel in Karachi on May 04.

Engr. Rizvi thanked the Counsel General for his invaluable support in making it easy for the CNH liaison office to clear the consignment of donations of Tractors and Engines for the Agricultural Universities from Pakistan customs. Mr.Rizvi encouraged CG towards the immediate need to involve Italian agricultural machinery manufacturers and suppliers to develop contacts with the recipients of agricultural lands on lease under the program initiated and managed by the Pakistan army under the Land Information and Management System (LIMS) to enhance agriculture by contracting out 9 million ha culturable wasteland (restore unirrigated and waste land). There is a big need for suppliers to provide pivot irrigation systems and other equipment for these lands. Engr. Mansoor has assured that CNH is playing an active role in this program and providing a complete machinery plan to these players engaged in transforming fallow lands into cultivable lands.

H.E Danilo Giurdanella then arranged a brief talking session with H.E the Ambassador on this topic. The Ambassador was well informed about the program and showed her satisfaction and pleasure that the Italian Consulate was already engaged in it. H.E Marilina assured to extend her complete support to engage the Italian machinery manufacturers through the platform of Federunacoma to ensure Italy becomes the major partner in the Green Pakistan Initiative program. 

Empowering the Workforce The Auto Industry’s Reskilling Revolution

Dear Readers! In connection to my previous articles with the title “Know your Vehicle” focusing on the human touch behind automotive excellence and customer service, a customer-centric approach leads the customer smile. Let’s embark on a journey that unveils the surprising human touchpoints within the seemingly automated automotive manufacturing world.

We will discover how human ingenuity and expertise work hand-in-hand with cutting-edge technology to create the vehicle you know and love. In the past, owning a car meant imitating a bond with a complex machine, a relationship built on grease-stained hands and basic mechanical knowledge. Today, however, vehicles are aces of engineering, arranged by a symphony of electronics, but fear not! “Know Your Vehicle” is not just about understanding complex systems, this is about appreciating the vital role humans still play in bringing your car to life.At the “Know Your Vehicle” point, every component, every detail, is scrutinized with care and expertise, ensuring that each vehicle meets the highest standards of quality and performance. It’s a moment where the soul of the automobile is imbued with the expertise of skilled artisans, who bring decades of experience and craftsmanship to bear on every vehicle that rolls off the assembly line. From the precise alignment of body panels to the flawless finish of the paintwork, every aspect of the vehicle is meticulously inspected and perfected, reflecting a commitment to excellence that is the hallmark of automotive manufacturing.

The automotive industry is undergoing a significant transformation, driven by factors like electric vehicles (EVs), automation, and digitalization. This transformation is reshaping everything from how cars are designed and manufactured to how we drive and interact with them. Imagine a world where your car seamlessly integrates with your digital life, where safety features become guardian angels on the road, and where the very concept of “ownership” might evolve. To navigate this changing landscape, manufacturers are placing a strong emphasis on reskilling and upskilling their workforce.

This driving force highlights the importance of investing in human capital as a key driver of innovation and growth in the automotive industry, as by prioritizing continuous learning and professional development, companies empower their employees to adapt to change, embrace new technologies, and drive meaningful impact within their organizations. As the industry continues to evolve, reskilling and upskilling initiatives will play a pivotal role in shaping the future of auto manufacturing and ensuring its long-term sustainability and success. Here’s a closer look at this crucial initiative, while the specific skills addressed in reskilling and upskilling programs will vary depending on the industry, the core concept is applicable across various sectors. In the ever-evolving landscape of auto manufacturing, where technology reigns supreme and innovation drives progress, the imperative of reskilling and upskilling the workforce emerges as a cornerstone of success. As we conclude our exploration of “Reskilling and Upskilling the Workforce: A Driving Force in Auto Manufacturing,” it becomes evident that investing in human capital is not just a strategic choice but a necessity for thriving in the digital age.

The scope of reskilling and upskilling is vast and constantly evolving, and the scope of reskilling and upskilling encompasses not just filling skill gaps but also fostering a culture of lifelong learning, adaptability, and a future-proof workforce prepared to thrive in an ever-changing global economy., but it can be broadly categorized into these main areas.

(i) Bridging the Skills Gap: The primary aim is to equip the workforce with the skills required to operate effectively in an environment driven by technological advancements. This might involve training for Electric Vehicle (EV) technology: Battery systems, charging infrastructure, and maintenance of EVs, Automation, and Robotics Programming, operation, and maintenance of robots used in manufacturing processes, data Analysis, and understanding data, using data analytics tools, and working with artificial intelligence applications in manufacturing, Protecting manufacturing systems and data from cyber threats.

(ii) Addressing Skill Deficiencies: Reskilling and upskilling programs can also target specific skill gaps within the existing workforce. This could involve, Software proficiency: Training employees on new software programs used in design, engineering, or manufacturing processes. Advanced manufacturing techniques: Equipping workers with the knowledge and skills required for innovative production methods like 3D printing or additive manufacturing. Safety protocols: Ensuring workers are up-to-date on safety procedures in a changing manufacturing environment.

(iii) Promoting Adaptability and Futureproofing: The scope extends beyond addressing immediate skill needs. It aims to create a more adaptable workforce prepared for future changes. Developing a Growth Mindset: Encouraging a culture of continuous learning allows employees to embrace new technologies and adapt to evolving job requirements. Building Soft Skills: While technical skills are essential, soft skills like critical thinking, problem-solving, communication, and collaboration are crucial for success in any industry. Reskilling and upskilling programs can emphasize these areas to create a well-rounded workforce. Cross-Training: Equipping workers with skills from different areas can increase their versatility and allow them to take on broader roles within the organization.

Why Reskilling and Upskilling are Essential: By prioritizing reskilling and upskilling, automotive manufacturers can ensure their workforce is equipped to navigate the transforming landscape of the industry, drive innovation, and maintain a competitive edge well into the future, these exciting changes, while paving the way for a more sustainable and efficient future, also necessitate a significant shift in the skillset required by the workforce. Here’s a breakdown of why reskilling and upskilling are essential for the industry to thrive. EVs, automation, and data-driven manufacturing processes require skillsets that may not have been prevalent before. Workers need to be equipped to handle these new technologies effectively. The automotive industry is constantly evolving. Reskilling and upskilling ensure that the workforce possesses the necessary skills to remain relevant and adaptable in the long run. The rapid pace of technological advancement can create a gap between the skills employers need and the skills workers possess. Reskilling and upskilling bridge this gap, ensuring a qualified workforce.

How Manufacturers are Reskilling and Upskilling: By implementing these strategies, manufacturers can empower their workforce to adapt to the changing landscape of the automotive industry. A reskilled and upskilled workforce will be well-positioned to drive innovation, maintain a competitive edge, and ensure the smooth operation of tomorrow’s automotive marvels. The company needs to develop and offer targeted training programs that focus on relevant skills like EV technology, robotics, data analysis, and cybersecurity. These programs can range from short workshops to comprehensive certification courses. Collaboration with universities, technical colleges, and vocational training centers allows manufacturers to develop customized training programs that address their specific needs. Mentorship programs and on-the-job training opportunities can equip existing workers with the necessary skills to transition to new roles or adapt to changing job requirements. Bite-sized learning modules and online resources provide flexible learning opportunities for employees to acquire new skills or refresh existing knowledge at their own pace.

Benefits of Reskilling and Upskilling: A well-trained workforce equipped with the latest knowledge and skills can leverage new technologies more effectively. This translates to streamlined processes, optimized production times, and ultimately, a boosted bottom line, similarly a well-trained workforce can leverage new technologies more effectively, leading to improved production processes and higher output. Furthermore, upskilled employees can contribute to innovation by applying their knowledge of new technologies to develop better products and processes. The most important factor is satisfaction, opportunities for learning and growth can boost employee morale and job satisfaction, leading to a more engaged and motivated workforce.By investing in reskilling and upskilling, manufacturers can reduce their dependence on hiring from outside, potentially saving time and resources.

Continuous Learning for Team: By prioritizing reskilling and upskilling, automotive manufacturers can ensure their workforce is equipped to navigate the changing landscape of the industry, drive innovation, and maintain a competitive edge in the years to come. The need for reskilling and upskilling in the automotive industry is likely to be an ongoing process. As technology continues to evolve, manufacturers will need to adapt their training programs and ensure their workforce possesses the skills necessary to thrive in the future.

Focus on Soft Skills: In addition to technical skills, soft skills like critical thinking, problem-solving, and communication remain crucial for success in the automotive industry. Building a Culture of Learning: Encouraging a culture of continuous learning within the organization can foster a growth mindset and motivate employees to embrace new challenges.

Personalized Learning Paths: Tailoring training programs to individual needs and learning styles can enhance the effectiveness of reskilling and upskilling initiatives.

Takeaway from this article:

The automotive industry is undergoing a significant transformation unlike anything seen before, driven by technological innovation, changing consumer preferences, and global sustainability goals. As we navigate this period of change and uncertainty. In the face of rapid technological change and shifting industry dynamics, companies must recognize the value of their most valuable asset—their employees—and empower them with the knowledge, skills, and tools needed to navigate the complexities of modern manufacturing. Reskilling programs enable workers to adapt to new roles and responsibilities while upskilling initiatives ensure that existing skill sets remain relevant and competitive in a rapidly changing environment.

As we are aware the future of mobility is electric, autonomous, and connected. By embracing these trends and embracing a spirit of innovation and collaboration, manufacturers can not only survive but thrive in the rapidly evolving automotive landscape, shaping the future of transportation for generations to come. Successful reskilling and upskilling initiatives often involve collaboration between auto manufacturers, educational institutions, government agencies, and industry associations. By pooling resources and expertise, stakeholders can develop comprehensive training programs that address the industry’s specific needs and provide workers with the skills and certifications required to excel in their roles. Public-private partnerships, apprenticeship programs, and on-the-job training initiatives are just a few examples of collaborative efforts aimed at building a skilled and resilient workforce for the future.

Written by Muhammad Rafique, Head of Production and Maintenance Foton JW Auto Park (Pvt) Ltd, Lahore, Pakistan.

This exclusive research article has been published in Automark Magazine’s June-2024 printed edition too.

BYD Today: An Overview with Historical insights

Dear Readers BYD was founded in February 1995, According to BYD publications it is a high-tech multinational company devoted to leveraging technological innovations for a better life. After more than 29 years of high-speed growth, BYD has established over 30 industrial parks across 6 continents, China, the United States, Canada, Japan, Brazil, Hungary, and India and played a significant role in industries related to electronics, auto, renewable energy and rail transit. With a focus on energy acquisition, storage, and application, BYD offers comprehensive new energy solutions with zero-emission. BYD has expanded from 20 employees to around 290,000. BYD: short for Build Your Dreams.

Global warming,driven by increased concentrations of greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide, methane, and nitrous oxide, poses significant threats to our planet. It leads to rising temperatures, which cause severe weather events, melting ice caps, rising sea levels, and disruption of ecosystems. These changes threaten biodiversity, agriculture, water supply, and human health, making global warming one of the most pressing environmental issues today.

The importance of addressing global warming cannot be overstated. If left unchecked, it could lead to catastrophic consequences, including more intense and frequent natural disasters, loss of habitable land due to sea-level rise, and severe impacts on food security and human health. Efforts to mitigate global warming are crucial to ensuring a stable and sustainable future for all life on Earth.

Solar energy and electric vehicles (EVs) are pivotal in the fight against global warming. Solar energy harnesses the power of the sun, providing a clean, renewable source of electricity without emitting greenhouse gases. By reducing reliance on fossil fuels, solar power helps decrease the overall carbon footprint. As solar technology advances, it becomes more efficient and affordable, making it a viable solution for reducing emissions on a large scale.

Electric vehicles also play a crucial role in mitigating global warming. Traditional internal combustion engine vehicles are significant contributors to greenhouse gas emissions. EVs, powered by electricity, produce zero tailpipe emissions. When charged with renewable energy sources like solar or wind power, the environmental benefits of EVs are maximized. This transition from fossil-fueled vehicles to electric ones is essential for reducing the transportation sector’s carbon emissions.

The combined use of solar energy and electric vehicles can significantly contribute to lowering global temperatures. By reducing dependence on fossil fuels and decreasing greenhouse gas emissions, these technologies help slow the rate of global warming. Moreover, their widespread adoption can lead to cleaner air, reduced pollution, and healthier ecosystems, ultimately creating a more sustainable and resilient planet. Through continued innovation and supportive policies, solar energy and EVs can be central to global efforts to combat climate change.

Strategy:

From launching the world’s first mass-produced PHEV model, the F3DM, in 2008 to rolling out 7+4 Full Market EV Strategy in 2015, BYD has always combined the goal of zero emissions with an understanding of market needs to fulfill its commitment to transforming transportation and eliminating fossil fuels.

Mission:

Technological innovations for a better life during the daytime, solar farms capture the power of sunshine;at night, energy storage systems deliver power to families.Electric vehicles on the streets and SkyRail systems along green beltsconnect the city with zero emissions and zero pollution & to provide more possibilities for a better life. Observing a new energy future approaching.This is the mission of BYD, and the green dream of all mankind.

Industries Engagement:

The company has diversified into areas such as cellphone assembly and solar cell manufacturing.

BYD has four industries dedicated to realizing its green dreams of creating a zero-emission energy ecosystem: automobile, electronics, new energy, and rail transit. BYD is listed on the Stock Exchange in both Shenzhen and Hong Kong, China.

BYD is also a pioneer in battery technology. After its successes with manufacturing batteries for mobile telephones and laptops, BYD decided to create a complete clean-energy ecosystem that reduces the world’s reliance on fossil fuels. BYD is dedicated to making mobility solutions emission-free.

In the past decades BYD has focused on mastering advanced technologies, power batteries, electric motors, electronic control systems and semiconductor chips. BYD offers electric trucks, electric busses, electric forklifts and even electric rail solutions. The company has become the world’s leading manufacturer of new energy vehicles (NEVs), exceeding more than 200,000 sales per month.

BYD entered the European market with three all-new pure-electric passenger cars. At the Paris Motor Show in October 2022, BYD unveiled its innovative and technologically-advanced electric car range to customers in Europe. This includes the BYD ATTO 3, an expressive and dynamic C-segment SUV, designed with the European customer in mind, as well asl the BYD TANG, which is a 7-seater with variable all-wheel drive. We also presented the sleek and sporty BYD HAN, an E-segment saloon.

BYD a high-tech brand.

BYD is not just a car manufacturer. Emerging from this considerable R&D the company developed the ground-breaking Blade Battery. This battery pack is revolutionizing safety, durability and performance in the EV industry. The Blade Battery works in close synergy with BYD’s exceptional competency in electric powertrain technology for the ultimate in system efficiency and integrated vehicle intelligence. Combined, this integrated technology has been developed to deliver optimum performance and a better driving experience. Notably, BYD owns the entire vertical supply chain for seamless integration and total manufacturing control, including the production of semiconductors.

Driving this innovation in technology, is a sincere commitment from BYD to provide safe and appealing solutions that reduce pollution from carbon emissions and address the issue of climate change, supporting the initiative to Cool the Earth by 1℃. The green dream has long been a priority for BYD and is the vision for the future.

For over two decades, BYD has been at the forefront of sustainable innovation. In 2008, BYD launched the world’s first mass-produced plug-in hybrid vehicle F3DM at the Geneva Motor Show. BYD was also the first automotive OEM in the world to announce it would be ceasing production of ICE vehicles to focus on BEV and PHEV products. BYD is the first, and only company in the world, to provide full market new energy vehicle solutions.

Global leader in new energy vehicles.

BYD is the global leader in NEVs and the third largest automotive brand in the world, based on market capitalization. BYD has ranked as number one for sales of NEVs in China for nine consecutive years. BYD is a true explorer when it comes to cleaner energy and has major aspirations for the future. This joins seamlessly perfect with the mobility goals of its automotive partners in Europe.

BYD has developed the industry-leading Blade Battery, e-Platform 3.0 and Dual-mode hybrid power technology accelerating the once-in-a-century transition from fossil fuel powered vehicles to electric vehicles.

Written by Aqeel Bashir & this exclusive article has been published in Automark Magazine’s June-2024 printed edition too.

Navigating the Impact of Redemption in Solar Tariffs

Net Energy Metering (NEM) is an enabling policy mechanism, which is designed to promote investment in Renewable Energy sector. Net-metered Photovoltaic (PV) Solar applications have becoming very popular amongst residential, Commercial and Industrial sector customers. NEM works through retail tariffs, thus allowing retail customers to offset their electricity bills via utilization of their privately-owned generating system and selling their surplus generation to the Distribution Companies. NEM usually uses a single, bi-directional meter and can measure current flowing in both directions.

In 2022, National Electric Power Regulatory Authority (NEPRA) initiated the process of amendments to the Alternative & Renewable Energy Distributed Generation and Net Metering Regulations, 2015 and proposed the following amendment, In Sub-Regulation 5 of Regulation 14 of the Regulations, the word ’National Average Power Purchase Price (NAPPP)be replaced with ‘National Average Energy Purchase Price (NAEPP)’. Now, it is important to understand how much they will save from Net Metering, here is a simple formula to calculate your savings,
Solar Panels Installed (Watts) x 4 (Units Per Day) x Electricity Unit Rate (Rs.) Suppose installing 1KW (250-Watt x 4 pcs) Solar Panels (Tier 1 Brand) will generate consumers with an average of 4,000 Watts per day, this equals to savings of 4 electricity units per day on average.

Similarly installing 10 KW Solar Panels will generate consumers an average of 40,000 Watts per day, this equals to savings of 40 electricity units per day on the average. However Solar Power Generation is likely to increase during summers when we receive ample amount of sunshine.

Now in Pakistan, something has happened that others have experienced, Pakistan had targeted 1,920MW of rooftop solar capacity by the year 2026, according to its latest Indicative Generation Capacity Expansion Plan. In reality, the nation has crossed that threshold last year. Now government want to apply the brakes, because, according to the power bureaucracy, this rapid growth in rooftop solar is creating costs that have to be passed on to poorer segments of the population, who don’t have the luxury to go the rooftop solar route because they have single-phase meters and the technology does not yet work with that. Additionally, they have very limited rooftop space they can use for the purpose.

“The current trend of installation of solar system with net metering across the country has mis-balanced government’s plan to pay capacity charges from the consumers as rich segment is converting it to net metering,” the power bureaucracy is contemplating rationalization of redemption rates of net metering electricity to Rs 11 per unit from current rates of Rs 21 per unit, now There is an impression in the Power Division that whatever advantage the consumers could get they have availed it and now damage has begun in the country’s power sector. On one hand government does not want to discourage solarization in the country, but on other hand they are cutting down the per unit price. The Power Division argues that consumers have installed solar system for their own consumption and rates of additional generation should be fixed on the affordability of the receiver i.e. Discos.

The process of amendment in the Regulations was initiated keeping in view increase in National Average Power Purchase Price (NAPPP). The amendment in Regulations was published in newspapers for eliciting public opinion for a period of 30 days. The public/consumers, during the hearing, strongly opposed the proposed amendments and argued that electricity through net metering is one of the most efficient methods in incurring low distribution losses, with no investment for distribution infrastructure and this proposal in the Regulation would discourage net metering/solar installation. The Authority sat on the decision for several months due to pressure from the then government and later announced that it had carefully reviewed the submissions of the stakeholders made during the hearing & in writing and is also cognizant of the vision of the government for induction of cheap and clean renewable energy into the system.

Net metering is predominantly based on the concept of minimizing the electricity cost through rooftop solar self-generation for self-consumption and not for commercial sale, DISCOs have to maintain Grid & Generation Capacities for the Net Metering Consumers during non-solar hours as well. However, at the same time, the economic benefits of net metering in terms of displacement of costlier electricity, savings of foreign exchange and incurring minimal losses, cannot be ignored. Moreover, the quantum of net metering units, at present is very low, ie, below 1% of the total energy purchased by DISCOs.

The big problem in Pakistan’s power bureaucracy now is that the state insists on setting the price of electricity manually, using outmoded formulae. In large-scale thermal power plants, for example, they still use what is called ‘cost plus” pricing, where the regulator actually looks at each cost item in the prospective power plant and decides what their total costs are and how much margin they should be allowed. This is partly because nobody is willing to invest in Pakistan on a large scale if their returns are not guaranteed. And the big reason for that is the government of Pakistan has a lousy reputation when it comes to delivering on its commitments.

This exclusive research article has been published in Automark Magazine’s June-2024 printed edition too.

Swappable Battery Options for Electric Bikes in Pakistan

Introduction: This policy aims to reduce pollution and promote sustainable transportation by encouraging the adoption of electric vehicles. The concept of swappable batteries for electric motorbikes is gaining traction in Pakistan as an innovative solution to enhance the practicality and convenience of electric vehicles.

The Pakistani government’s Electric Vehicle Policy 2020-25 provides incentives and support for developing electric vehicle infrastructure, including battery-swapping systems.

Key Players and Innovations: ZYP Technologies is a notable example in this space, launching the Magvus EV electric bike featuring a swappable battery system. This bike allows users to quickly replace a discharged battery with a fully charged one, minimizing downtime and making electric mobility more efficient. The Magvus EV offers a range of up to 150 kilometers on a single charge and includes modern features like a digital display and advanced safety systems.

EzBike, an Islamabad-based startup, has introduced Pakistan’s first electric scooter with a swappable battery system, known as the Electron. EzBike has established a network of battery swap stations, called ezSwap, in Islamabad and Rawalpindi, allowing users to quickly exchange depleted batteries for fully charged ones, enhancing the convenience and efficiency of electric scooters.

Global Influence

Globally, major motorcycle manufacturers such as Honda, Kawasaki, Suzuki, and Yamaha have been working on swappable battery technology through a joint venture called Gachaco. This initiative aims to standardize battery swapping and expand the necessary infrastructure to support the widespread adoption of electric two-wheelers. By providing shared battery services and promoting standardized swappable batteries, these companies are setting a precedent that could inspire similar efforts in Pakistan and other markets.

Benefits of Swappable Battery Systems: The implementation of swappable battery systems addresses significant challenges associated with electric vehicles, such as long charging times and limited range.

In Pakistan, this approach could significantly boost the adoption of electric motorbikes by making them more user-friendly and reducing concerns related to charging infrastructure.

Challenges in Implementation: Despite the promising advantages, several challenges remain in fully implementing swappable battery systems in Pakistan:

1. Infrastructure Development: Establishing a widespread network of battery swap stations requires significant investment and coordination. EzBike has started this process in Islamabad and Rawalpindi, but expanding nationwide will take time and resources.

2. Standardization: Ensuring compatibility between different brands and models of electric motorbikes is crucial. Currently, most initiatives are proprietary, which can limit scalability and user adoption.

3. Battery Technology: Advancements in battery technology, such as solid-state batteries, are essential for improving the range, safety, and lifespan of swappable batteries. However, these technologies are still under development and not yet widely available.

4. Economic Viability: The initial cost of setting up battery swap stations and producing compatible electric scooters can be high. Companies need to balance this with affordable pricing for consumers to ensure widespread adoption.

5. Policy and Regulation: Supportive government policies and incentives can play a significant role in accelerating the adoption of electric vehicles and the necessary infrastructure. While there are efforts to push for cleaner transportation options, more comprehensive policies are needed.

6. Consumer Acceptance: Convincing consumers of the reliability and safety of swappable batteries is crucial. Any incidents or perception of reduced performance compared to fixed batteries can hinder adoption. Educating users on the benefits and usage of swappable battery systems is necessary for widespread acceptance.

7. Technological Limitations: Ensuring that swappable batteries have a long life, high performance, and safety standards is essential. Batteries need to withstand frequent swapping and charging cycles without degradation.

8. Security Concerns: Preventing theft and ensuring the security of swappable batteries is a significant concern.

9. Environmental Considerations: Establishing effective recycling processes for used batteries to prevent environmental degradation and ensure sustainable practices is critical.

Conclusion: While the implementation of swappable battery systems for motorbikes offers promising advantages, addressing these challenges requires coordinated efforts from manufacturers, governments, and other stakeholders to ensure successful adoption and operation. Initiatives like those by ZYP Technologies and EzBike are paving the way for a more sustainable and convenient future in electric mobility in Pakistan.

With continued support and innovation, swappable battery systems could become a cornerstone of the country’s electric vehicle infrastructure, contributing to cleaner air and a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

By overcoming these hurdles and leveraging supportive policies, Pakistan can accelerate the transition to sustainable transportation, aligning with global trends and enhancing the quality of life for its citizens.

Written by Asif Mehmood for Automark Magazine and it has been published in June-2024 printed edition too.

Argentina’s Auto Parts Aftermarket and Economic Landscape

Economic Overview: Argentina, located in South America, has a mixed economy characterized by rich natural resources, a highly literate population, and a diversified industrial base. However, the country has faced economic challenges, including high inflation, currency fluctuations, and periodic recessions.

Auto Parts Aftermarket in Argentina: Argentina has a sizable automotive industry, with a strong demand for auto parts and accessories. The auto parts aftermarket is a crucial component of the automotive sector, catering to vehicle maintenance, repair, and customization needs.

Key Points Regarding the Auto Parts Aftermarket:

Market Size and Growth: The Argentine auto parts aftermarket is significant, driven by a large vehicle population and consumer demand for affordable replacement parts. Despite economic challenges, the aftermarket segment has shown resilience and continues to grow.

Product Range: The aftermarket offers a wide range of products, including replacement parts for engines, transmissions, braking systems, suspension components, electrical systems, and body parts. Additionally, accessories such as performance upgrades, audio systems, and cosmetic enhancements are popular among consumers.

Distribution Channels: Auto parts are distributed through various channels, including specialized retailers, independent garages, online platforms, and authorized dealerships. Each channel caters to different customer segments, offering a mix of convenience, expertise, and affordability.

Quality and Price Sensitivity: Argentine consumers are price-sensitive but also value quality and reliability. As a result, aftermarket manufacturers and distributors must strike a balance between offering competitive prices and ensuring product quality to maintain consumer trust and loyalty.

Regulatory Environment: The Argentine government plays a role in regulating the auto parts aftermarket, including standards for product safety, emissions, and environmental impact. Compliance with regulations is essential for aftermarket businesses to operate legally and maintain consumer confidence.

Competitive Landscape: The aftermarket sector is competitive, with both domestic and international manufacturers and distributors vying for market share. Established brands, product quality, pricing strategies, and customer service are key factors influencing competitiveness in the market.

Overall, the Argentine auto parts aftermarket presents opportunities for businesses willing to navigate the economic and regulatory landscape. Understanding consumer preferences, maintaining product quality, and adapting to market trends are critical for success in this dynamic industry.

Key Economic Indicators:

Population: 46.3 million

GDP Annual Growth: 5%

GDP Per Capita: $13,700

Inflation Rate (In the March 12% but the annualized rate running over 275%)

Interest Rate :50%

Government Debt to GDP Ratio :86%

Exchange Rate: 1 USD = 877.73Argentine Peso

Import Tariffs: 06 ~ 22 %.

The top imports of Argentina are Refined Petroleum ($6.79B), Motor vehicles; parts and accessories (8701 to 8705) ($3.58B), Petroleum Gas ($3.49B), Cars ($1.89B), and Soybeans ($1.67B), importing mostly from China ($16.4B), Brazil ($15.4B), United States ($11.1B), Germany ($2.69B), and Paraguay ($1.91B).

Argentina imports Cars primarily from: Brazil ($1.53B), Mexico ($83M), China ($81.2M), India ($49M), and Germany ($28.6M). The fastest growing import markets in Cars for Argentina between 2021 and 2022 were Brazil ($252M), China ($24M), and India ($15.5M).

Argentina Full Year 2023: Toyota and Fiat Cronos threepeat at #1, market up 11.6% The Fiat Cronos is the best-selling vehicle in Argentina for the third straight year. New light vehicle sales in Argentina gain 11.6% in 2023 to 424,949 units for a third consecutive positive year.

List of products at 4 digits level imported by Argentina in 2022

detailed products in the following category: 87 Vehicles other than railway or tramway rolling stock, and parts and accessories thereof

This exclusive research article has been published in Automark Magazine’s June-2024 printed edition too.