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Fiat shares drop on report of sales ban

Fiat Chrysler shares have fallen sharply (-5%) on the Milan stock exchange after media reports that it could face a sales ban in Germany due to accusations that it cheated emissions tests.

According to German newspaper Bild’s Sunday edition, the German Federal Motor Vehicle Office (KBA) had tested a Fiat car and discovered software that shut down emissions control technology after 22 minutes – two minutes after the end of a standard test.

Fiat Chrysler has so far made no comment on the allegations. It has also cancelled a meeting with the German authorities which had been due to take place last week, on the grounds that responsibility for testing lay with Italy.

The Financial Times

Nissan says battery power could more than double in 10 years

An affordable electric car that can travel almost 400 miles without needing to be charged could be developed within a decade following a “breakthrough” in battery technology, according to Nissan, the Japanese carmaker.

The company is one of several investigating ways to eke out more power from electric batteries in a bid to extend the range of their vehicles. Nissan’s electric Leaf car can only travel a limited distance — about 150 miles — on a single charge.

Strong retail sales growth raises hopes on consumer optimism 

Retails sales posted a much stronger growth than expected. Consumers spent an average of £7bn a week in April, the volume of goods purchased was up 1.3 per cent compared with march, and 4.3 per cent compared to last year.

The volume of sales was up in all areas except for stores and clothing. Despite the rise in the volume of sales for most stores, the ONS noted the average prices had fallen across all stores types.

The Times

Clean air pledge based on tests of five cars

A government pledge to clean up the deadly diesel air pollution afflicting 38 British towns and cities is likely to fail because it is based on inaccurate data from testing just five cars, experts have warned. L

ast December, Liz Truss, the environment secretary, pledged that nitrogen dioxide (NO2) would meet safe levels in all but eight of the clean-up zones by 2020. She suggested this would happen mainly when people replaced older vehicles with new ones that meet the EU’s Euro 6 standard for low emissions.

Car patents shift a gear on a bumpy road

The rise of electric cars and hydrogen fuel cells as well as the race to build connected and driverless cars are leading to big changes in the car industry. The most radical change for car IP has been in green propulsion either from batteries or hydrogen.

Propulsion patents soared 12,000 in the five years to 2014, according to Thomson Reuters. While as many as 22,000 security technology inventions were protected in the five years to 2015. Toyota leads with 2,000 patents, followed by Bosch, Hyundai, Denso, and GM.

The Guardian

IFS warns Brexit could extend UK austerity by two years

The Institute for Fiscal Studies has warned that leaving the European Union would force ministers to extend austerity measures by up to two years to achieve a budget surplus. The independent IFS said the impact of lower GDP growth and extra borrowing costs would knock a £20 billion to £40 billion hole in the government’s finances by 2020 and leave ministers struggling to balance the books before 2022, two years later than forecast.

The thinktank disputed also the claim that the UK sends £350 million to Brussels every week, saying the figure was more like £150 million once the rebate was deducted from the total and funds for research and business subsidies are taken into account.


Posted by Sue Robinson on 27/05/2016