Recharge Wrap-up: unofficial Tesla ad, VW will produce Budd-e

Akon Loves Tesla, Solar; Kia Soul EV To Get More Range

An unofficial Tesla commercial pays homage to the automaker's namesake. The video, which shows the Model S driving through a dusty, petroleum-addicted landscape reminiscent of a Mad Max film, features words from a speech by electricity-obsessed inventor Nikola Tesla. While Tesla (the man) talks about advancing technology into the future through electricity, the cars surroundings switch from the barren oil village to a green countryside dotted with wind turbines. See the video above, and read more at Treehugger.

Famous rapper Akon is a Tesla fan who wants to power Africa with solar energy. Akon, who once boasted a collection of 28 exotic cars, traded them in for four Teslas, including a Model X. Also, his organization Akon Lighting Africa provides free solar electricity and lighting to communities that need it. Clean Technica talked to Akon about solar power, Tesla and EVs in a video. See the video and read more at Clean Technica, and get more perspective from Teslarati.

The Volkswagen BUDD-e EV may be moving to production. The electric vehicle, built on the MEB modular platform with looks borrowed from the Microbus, made its debut as a concept vehicle at CES this year. Volkwagen's Dr. Volkmar Tanneberger tells Car magazine, "You will see a car that looks a lot like this, on the MEB platform, reach production. I can't say exactly when, but 2020 or thereabouts." He also says that the California camper van and Transporter van will continue production with internal combustion engines. Read more from Car.

The 2017 Kia Soul EV will have more range. While it is scheduled for some minor updates, upping the electric Soul's driving range from its current EPA rating of 93 miles will hopefully attract more customers than a simple facelift. Autocar spied the next Soul EV testing in some heavy camouflage, but it offered no other details about the range beyond its reported expansion. Read more from Plugin Cars.

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