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Renault and Geely can ‘challenge top players’ with efficient powertrains

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Following news that Renault Group and Geely signed a joint venture agreement to launch a powertrain technology company, it’s been suggested the pair can disrupt the status quo and take advantage of the need for the more efficient engines that use synthetic fuels.

Rupayan Chakraborty, Automotive Analyst at GlobalData, said: “As the automobile industry is making rapid strides towards low-emission vehicles and traditional engines are experiencing a reduction in demand, synthetic fuel technologies are now in high demand. The new agreement between Renault Group and Geely to launch a new powertrain company will be a shot in the arm for both the companies in the global synthetic fuel powertrain and engine market when the new joint venture company starts its operations.

The new joint venture will benefit from the synergies of the intellectual properties of both companies in developing future powertrain technologies. Although the new company will be focusing on primarily manufacturing internal combustion engine (ICE) engines, it is expected to drive innovations in hybrid and electric vehicle (EV) powertrains and will be ready to provide end-to-end powertrain solutions to major automakers in three continents.

Chakraborty added: “Owning an electric vehicle has become a new fad all over the world, fuelled by increased consumer interest in sustainable living and the introduction of cars with greater driving ranges. Additionally, strict CO2 targets established by various governments for automakers, increased investments in charging networks by various automakers and third-party companies, and an aggressive push by governments through catalyst programs like subsidies are all contributing to the demand for decarbonized automobiles.

“As per GlobalData estimates, the global electric vehicle market, including battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and hybrid vehicles (HEVs), will reach 103.5 million units by 2030, recording a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 3.1% during 2022-30. Considering the market potential of the decarbonized automobile and the growing global electric vehicle market, the new Renault Group and Geely company will pose a head-to-head challenge to global automobile companies like BYD and Tesla in the long run.”

Northumbrian Water trials storage with Renault batteries

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Second-life lithium batteries from Renault cars will be installed by Northumbrian Water through 2019 in a bid to trial energy storage systems by the company.

The trial is expected to take place at the company’s sites across the north-east of England and the counties of Essex and Suffolk.

The storage units will be used to manage energy loads and help reduce energy spend, particularly through the night, in addition to providing power through peak evening times.

The batteries will be commissioned by Autumn 2019 and will be a joint contract between Northumbrian Water and partners, including Argonaut Power, with the latter supplying the behind-the-meter storage systems and managing the operation.

Investor Ingenious is backing Argonaut Power, with strategic advisor Ikigai Capital proving a bankable structure for the pilot.

The battery systems will be provided by energy storage engineering company, Connected Energy.

Argonaut Managing Director and Ingenious Senior Investment Director Roberto Castiglioni said: “We are excited to enter into an exclusive partnership with Northumbrian Water to install and manage behind-the-meter storage at some of their critical sites.

“We believe we have created something unique and innovative through a combination of technical and financial engineering. As far as we know, we’re the only fully-funded solution offering 30-year storage installations to commercial and industrial customers under a revenue sharing agreement, boosting site profitability.”

Northumbrian Water Energy Development Manager Anthony Browne said: “Large-scale battery storage is going to be a major feature of the electricity industry going forward and this is a great opportunity for us to develop our understanding of these processes.

“We expect that having batteries on site can also help us obtain more value from any renewable energy we generate on our sites.”