Electric Vehicles

New track by Ren Harvieu celebrates the possibility of an electric vehicle future

UK artist Ren Harvieu has created a new song celebrating electric vehicles.

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor UK

Shortly after Ford launched a song based on the 2021 Mustang Mach-E, Hyundai has released its own musical interlude featuring an alternatively powertrained vehicle. "Electric Feels" was written and performed by critically acclaimed UK artist Ren Harvieu. It was co-written with Romeo Stodart.

Hyundai commissioned the song, released by Bella Union, as part of its ongoing promotion of plug-in hybrid, electric, and hydrogen-powered vehicles. The company has committed $36 billion over the next five years in a push to get 44 electrified models available to customers by 2025.

Ren Harvieu HyundaiHyundai has one of the largest electrified vehicle fleets in the world. Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor UK

Some of that push includes launching the company's fourth passenger vehicle brand. Ioniq joins Hyundai, Genesis, and Kia in the Hyundai Motor Corporation family.

According to Hyundai, the new track "is an emotive dose of sassy synth pop and takes inspiration from Harvieu's experiences during lockdown, including the changing sound of the city she witnessed, as our roads emptied and air pollution improved."

"I'd already been thinking about the changes that I've seen in cities across the country, quieter roads, less air pollution and I think we've been given a small window into what a more sustainable future could look like. This campaign is about getting people to think about the environment and make that switch to electric. For me this is a really important message," said Harvieu.

"The quieter roads during lockdown have really given us an insight into what a greener world could look and sound like - and it's clear that the British public is serious about its commitment to improving the planet and living in a more environmentally-conscious way," Ashley Andrew, Managing Director, from Hyundai Motor UK.

Ren HarvieuRen Harvieu composed the song based on her experiences during the COVID-19 lockdown. Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor UK

Seven years after her Top 5 debut album, Salford singer, Ren recently overcame a life threatening back injury to release her new album 'Revel in the Drama' in April.

Stream or download Ren Harvieu's track, 'Electric Feels', here.

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First-year Ford F-150 Lightning production numbers doubled
Ford

Ford has begun serial production of the new F-150 Lightning electric pickup truck, marking what could be one of the most important days in recent automotive history. The first trucks rolled off the assembly line at Ford's Rouge Electric Vehicle Center in Michigan today, so America's best-selling truck has finally gone electric. Ford wants to sell two million EVs per year by 2026 and have half of its global sales volume to be electric by 2030.

Ford F-150 LightningPast meets future: Ford's new electric pickup will be the F-150 Lightningautomotivemap.com

Ford has seen extreme demand for the trucks, with 200,000 reservations since the books opened. To deliver, the automaker plans to increase production to an annual rate of 150,000 units by next year, which involved huge investments in the Rouge Center and created hundreds of jobs. Ford's total investment for the F-150 Lightning crests $1 billion across Michigan alone, and has created 1,700 jobs across various facilities in the state.

Ford F-150 LightningThe first production trucks left the factory today.
Ford Motor Company

Though the Lightning starts around $40,000, the most mainstream models will cost much more than that. The F-150 Lightning Pro, while affordable, is a stripped-down truck intended for commercial buyers. It's still a forward-looking electric truck with amazing capabilities, but it lacks much of the creature comforts and features that everyday drivers expect. Higher trims get the latest driver assistance features, including BlueCruise, which is Ford's semi-autonomous hands-free driving assistant. A 12-inch touchscreen is standard, along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, navigation, a Wi-Fi hotspot, and more.

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Electric pickup truck

Ford F-150 Lightning could get tank turn

Ford patented a tank turn feature in late 2020.

Ford

The F-150 Lightning is packed with cool tech and capability, but we're learning that Ford has even bigger plans for its first electric pickup. Inside EVs found an exciting document on the Lightning Owners Forum that shows ford applied to patent a tank turn feature like the one we saw Rivian pull off a few years ago, where the truck spins around a center point using its electric motors. Rivian's tank turn feature still hasn't made it to market, so it's possible that Ford beats them to the punch.

Ford F-150 LightningTank turn allows the truck to spin while almost completely stationary.Ford

Ford applied for the patent in October 2020, but it's just now making its way out. In the document, Ford gives an example of how it could work: "Methods, apparatus, systems and articles of manufacture are disclosed to perform a tank turn. An example vehicle includes a first wheel and a second wheel, the first wheel located on an end of a first axle, the second wheel located on an end of the second axle, the end of the first axle opposite to the end of the second axle, a first suspension coupled to the first wheel, a second suspension coupled to the second wheel, and a controller to drive the first axle in a first direction, drive the second axle in the second direction and decrease a first suspension load of the first suspension and a second suspension load of the second suspension."

As Inside EVs points out, Rivian's tank turn feature employs the R1 T's quad-motor setup to drive each wheel individually. The F-150 Lightning doesn't currently have a four-motor choice and instead offers two motors – one on each axle. It's important to note that Rivian patented tank turn and showed that it could work, but there hasn't yet been a production vehicle that offers the capability. Toyota filed a patent in 2019, but again it's just paperwork at this point.

Ford F-150 LightningNo automaker has brought tank turn to production yet.

To achieve the turn, Ford has a few options. The most obvious would be to offer a quad-motor upgrade in future model years. It's unclear if such a feature is in the works or if Ford plans to provide beefier versions of the Lightning, such as a Raptor variant with upgraded motors. The automaker could also design gearing to reverse the wheels on one side while the others drive forward, or it could use braking to lock the wheels and tighten the turning radius.

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