Fast Lane: Volvo tops electric truck sales, lithium prices set to soar

Volvo Trucks started making its first all-electric truck model, the Volvo FL Electric, in 2019. PHOTO: VOLVO

Volvo Trucks garners a third of electric truck market

Volvo Trucks says it has sold more than 4,300 electric trucks in over 38 countries.

In Europe, the Swedish manufacturer is the market leader with a 32 per cent share of the market for heavy electric trucks, while in North America, nearly half of all heavy electric trucks registered in 2022 were Volvo trucks.

In 2022, the market for heavy electric trucks (16 tonnes or more) in Europe grew by 200 per cent to 1,041 units, and Volvo Trucks holds the biggest share of this market.

BMW’s beefiest SUVs now have mild hybrid system

The 2023 BMW X5 M Competition (left) and X6 M Competition: Now with mild hybrid system. PHOTO: BMW

A new 4.4-litre V8 engine marks the debut of 48-volt mild hybrid technology in BMW’s X5 M Competition and X6 M Competition models.

The new engine delivers 625hp and 750Nm of torque, and both cars come with more driver assistance systems, including Driving Assistant and Parking Assistant Professional.

Both also boast Adaptive M suspension Professional and M xDrive all-wheel-drive system with rear active differential. They hit 100kmh in 3.9 seconds and a regulated top speed of 248kmh.

Wearnes in charity drive to help needy families with food essentials

Multi-franchise motor group Wearnes Automotive is hosting this year’s Heart on Wheels, a food charity drive.

In partnership with the 20-year-old home-grown Food From The Heart charity, it hopes to collect 25,000 food items in its latest campaign to help needy families cope with the spike in food prices.

Donors can drop off food items at 45 Leng Kee Road on March 4 and 5. Preferred items include rice (2kg and 5kg); cooking oil (1-litre); instant noodles; canned food (sardines, tuna, curry chicken and soup); coffee, tea and Milo in sachets; oats; cereal; biscuits and bread spreads. 

You can also order food items and have them delivered to the venue between 9am and 6pm.

Cash donations can also be made through, where they will be matched dollar-for-dollar by the Tote Board.  

Audi unveils final edition of TT after 25 years

Audi TT Final Edition is available in other colours besides black. PHOTO: AUDI

Audi has launched the TT Final Edition, 25 years after the first TT coupe was unveiled. In one variant, black dominates the entire car, including its Audi rings, badging and tailpipes. The Roadster variant has rollover bars and wind diffuser in black.

Privacy glass (available for the coupe only) and red brake callipers behind 20-inch matt grey wheels are also part of the package. Inside, armrests on the doors, door pull handles and the centre console are leather-wrapped.

An Alcantara steering wheel with red stitching and 12 o’clock marker is unique to the Final Edition, along with red inserts on the seats, air vents and centre console (coupe only).

The car gets more equipment, including MMI Navigation Plus, Internet-connected infotainment services and a Bang & Olufsen sound system.

Lithium prices set to climb further

Australian lithium miner Allkem expects higher realised prices this quarter than in the October-December period, reported Reuters.

Allkem reported a nearly 11-fold jump in first-half profit on the back of soaring prices and strong output.

The Argentina-headquartered company sees customer demand in the market for spodumene concentrate, which contains lithium, as robust, and expects lithium carbonate prices to be about US$53,000 (S$71,000) a tonne in the first quarter of the year, compared with US$43,236 in the first half.

Prices of lithium, a key material for electric vehicles, have soared on strong demand from carmakers amid increased calls for decarbonisation and transition towards greener energy sources.

Global demand for the metal is expected to surge more than fivefold by 2030.

Facelifted Hyundai i10 sharper and more connected

The Hyundai i10 gets a new face for mid-life revision. PHOTO: HYUNDAI MOTOR

Hyundai has updated its i10, its first revision for the supermini since it was launched in 2019.

Among the more significant changes are its headlights, which are now equipped with multi-face reflectors and new LED signatures front and back.

The front daytime-running LEDs have been integrated into the car’s front grille, which features a new honeycomb mesh design. The rear LED-combined lights now display the letter “H” on the horizontal tailgate line.

Inside, the i10 is fitted with blue mood lamps in the front seats. The infotainment system has more connectivity features, including over-the-air map updates for its navigation.

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