The University of Michigan Solar Car Team has won the 2014 American Solar Challenge. It is the team's eighth national championship, its fifth in a row, and its first using Siemens' product lifecycle management (PLM) software. The race took place over 1,722 miles and seven days traveling across eight states. The team's car, called "Quantum," outpaced the nearest competitor by four hours. Looking forward, Michigan Solar Car Project Manager Pavan Naik says, "The switch to Siemens tools will give us the ability to model and simulate everything and truly allow us to optimize the performance of our new vehicle. As we start on our quest to win the World Solar Challenge in 2015, we'll be leveraging a full complement of PLM solutions." Read more in the press release below.

The EcoCar3 competition, in which teams will convert Chevrolet Camaros into hybrid electric cars, begins in September. The various college teams will have four years to lessen the car's environmental impact as much as possible while maintaining performance and, of course, that cool Camaro design. EcoCar3, which is put on by the US Department of Energy and General Motors, kicks off with a workshop in Novi, Michigan from September 16 - 18. Read more at the DOE website at the dedicated EcoCar3 site or watch the announcement video at our previous post.

Zap and Jonway Auto are shifting to a high rate of EV production. Zap already has two lines creating the Urbee EV to met demand, and is switching over a third to make electric minivans and SUVs. The company aims to produce 30,000 EVs by 2015 for the Chinese market. Zap says it has a backlog of 25,000 Urbee orders. Read more in the press release below.

A family of four hopes to make a world record-breaking, 6,000-mile electric bike journey this fall. The family, which recently drove from Argentina to Montana in a pickup with a camper, will ride from Montana to Maine, then down the East Coast to Florida in an attempt to break the record for longest electric bicycle ride. They'll use two bikes. The Father, Thomas, will ride one of the bikes carrying one of the children, while the rest of the family rides in a support vehicle, with the mother, Dylan, riding the second bike when they can find others to drive. They have started a crowdfunding campaign for some of the equipment needed to document the trip. See the video below or read more at Treehugger.
Show full PR text
Siemens Helps University of Michigan Solar Car Team Secure 8th National Championship

Winning Vehicle Produced with Siemens' PLM Software Technology

Team Completes 1,722 Mile Course in 7 Days

The University of Michigan crossed the finish line in Minneapolis to win their eighth national championship in the 2014 American Solar Challenge. The team, which switched to Siemens product lifecycle management (PLM) software technology in 2013 as their primary tool for product design and development, successfully completed a seven-day course across eight states, four hours faster than its nearest competitor. The team will now spend the next year using a wide range of Siemens PLM software to design, manufacture, test and optimize performance of a four-wheel car to compete in the 2015 World Solar Challenge in the Australian Outback.

"As our fifth straight national championship, this is a huge win for our team, and it's a powerful testament to the value of Siemens' PLM software." said Pavan Naik, Michigan Solar Car project manager. "We realize that to win the global solar challenge, we need to move from understanding the performance of individual components of the vehicle to understand how the entire vehicle works as a system. The switch to Siemens tools will give us the ability to model and simulate everything and truly allow us to optimize the performance of our new vehicle. As we start on our quest to win the World Solar Challenge in 2015, we'll be leveraging a full complement of PLM solutions."

Since its establishment in 1990, the team has built 12 vehicles including Quantum, which was developed for this year's 1,722-mile American Solar Challenge. The team, which consists of almost 100 members, also races in the World Solar Challenge with a vehicle named Generation. Both vehicles were developed and built with the assistance of Siemens PLM Software solutions. Siemens is also a platinum sponsor of the team.

Siemens' PLM software technology is used by manufacturing companies worldwide to develop some of the world's most sophisticated products. In the global automotive industry alone, Siemens software is used throughout product development and manufacturing by more than 90 percent of the world's top 15 automotive OEMs and nearly 90 percent of the top 25 Tier One auto suppliers. Siemens makes its software available to academic institutions like the University of Michigan, to support a highly trained and heavily recruited future workforce.

"Siemens is committed to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education, and is proud to have supported the University of Michigan team's race toward victory," said Dave Taylor, vice president of Global Marketing, Siemens PLM Software. "Our advanced PLM technology will continue to help elevate the performance of this highly successful team as they prepare for their next challenge."

For further information on Siemens PLM Software, please see

Follow us on Twitter at
About Siemens PLM Software

Siemens PLM Software, a business unit of the Siemens Industry Automation Division, is a world-leading provider of product lifecycle management (PLM) software, systems and services with nine million licensed seats and 77,000 customers worldwide. Headquartered in Plano, Texas, Siemens PLM Software helps thousands of companies make great products by optimizing their lifecycle processes, from planning and development through manufacturing and support. Our HD-PLM vision is to give everyone involved in making a product the information they need, when they need it, to make the smartest decision. For more information on Siemens PLM Software products and services, visit
About Siemens Industry Automation Division

The Siemens Industry Automation Division (Nuremberg, Germany) supports the entire value chain of its industrial customers – from product design to production and services – with an unmatched combination of automation technology, industrial control technology, and industrial software. With its software solutions, the Division can shorten the time-to-market of new products by up to 50 percent. Industry Automation comprises five Business Units: Industrial Automation Systems, Control Components and Systems Engineering, Sensors and Communications, Siemens PLM Software, and Water Technologies. For more information, visit

ZAP and Jonway Auto Realigns Resource to Boost EV Production to Target

Production Volume of 30,000 EVs by June 2015 to Address China EV Demand

SANTA ROSA, Calif., Aug. 13, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- ZAP (ZAAP), an Electric Vehicle (EV) automotive company incorporated in California and headquartered in Santa Rosa, California, and its subsidiary Jonway Auto are realigning its resources to support volume production of their EV product line by putting in three parallel EV production lines in their manufacturing plant in Zhejiang Province. Two of the new EV production lines are already in full operation producing the Urbee, a city neighborhood vehicle that has drawn orders from multiple large dealerships in China, resulting in backlog over the next year of over 25,000 vehicles. The additional third new EV production line being put in place will switch from producing gasoline versions of SUV and Minivans, to supporting full electric vehicle models of the SUV and Minivan by 4th quarter of 2014. As Jonway Auto transitions from their prior focus of the gasoline vehicle business to focusing on electric vehicles as its mainstream business going forward, its current team of manufacturing engineers, technicians and managers are being retrained to expand their expertise to do mass production of EVs.

Jonway Auto is authorized by the Chinese government through Jonway Group's separate licensing entity in Hangzhou to do auto manufacturing and has the formal auto manufacturing and sales license to get the type approval for both the SUV and Minivan models for highway speed EV products. With this license and the type approvals, the electric vehicle purchases are eligible for full EV rebate incentives offered by the Central and local governments. Recent announcements confirmed that the rebate incentives will continue through to the year 2020, with additional exemptions of registration fees and sales and consumer taxes for EVs. This recent announcement also declared that 30% of the government new vehicles have to be Chinese Auto manufacturer's EVs, and when pollution indices exceed the allowed levels for the major cities, government gasoline vehicles are banned from being on the road while the pollution indices are exceeded. These economic and regulatory factors are driving government organizations to purchase full electric vehicles.

ZAP Jonway Auto's SUV can go up to 135km/hour (over 80 mph) with a range of over 200km (over 124 miles), and the minivan which has a lighter body, is engineered to reach a peak speed of over 120km/hour (75mph) and a range of over 250km (150miles) for the lithium battery versions. With the Chinese government rebates that are offered by both the central government and the local governments in major cities, the EV SUV and the EV minivan could be bought at a lower cost than the gasoline versions for the same models. These two EVs are the flagship products of ZAP and Jonway Auto. Currently Jonway Auto and ZAP's Hangzhou JV are both working on several government fleet opportunities for the EV minivan, aiming at city delivery fleets, and focusing initially on a few cities like Tianjin, Ningbo and Hangzhou. They are also working on orders for EV SUVs delivered for government organizations to replace the vehicles that their drivers use to drive around in the cities.

The minivan also comes in a lower cost lead acid model which is ideally suited for city delivery vans and has a lower range of 130 km (80 miles) with a peak speed of 100kph (62mph), and competitively priced. This is targeting international markets where there is no rebate available, but due to the competitive pricing, is well positioned for many of the SE Asian countries as well as Eastern European countries.

The Urbee was recently DOT approved for the US under NEV/LSV and is also already EU type approved for the European markets, under L6 category. The attractive lower price of the Urbee which is lead acid, will be suitable for city commuting because of the ease of parking and compactness. The range of the Urbee is over 160km (100miles) and for the L6 and DOT type approved versions, the speed is locked at 45kph (28mph) even though it is capable of peak speed of 70kph (43.5mph). This product, although focused at the lower price sector, could deliver the volume for Jonway Auto over the next year that could provide Jonway Auto's plant the production volume that they need to drive costs down for all of its other EV products, and absorb the overhead costs.

About ZAP and Jonway Auto

ZAP and Jonway Auto designs and manufactures quality, affordable new energy and electric vehicles (EVs). Jonway Automobile has ISO 9000 manufacturing facilities, engineering, sales and customer services facilities in China, Jonway has production capacity of up to 50,000 vehicles per year, and has established sales distribution network in China. ZAP, an early pioneer of EVs, brings to both companies a broad range of EV product technologies. ZAP is headquartered in Santa Rosa, California and Jonway Auto is located in Zhejiang Province of the People's Republic of China. Additional information about ZAP Jonway is available at

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements is defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The words "anticipate," "believe," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "plan," and similar expressions that may tend to suggest a future event or outcome are not guarantees of performance, which cannot be predicted or anticipated. These forward-looking statements are based largely on expectations and are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond the control of the Company. Actual results could differ materially from these forward-looking statements.

Share This Photo X