Welcome to The Grid, R&T’s quick roundup of the auto industry and motorsports news you should know this morning.
Tesla Rolling Out Low-Cost Million-Mile Battery
Electric car batteries are an interesting thing. Compared to a tank of gasoline, EV batteries aren’t particularly energy dense and are extremely heavy. The fact that we have EVs that can achieve 250-plus miles of range is really a testament to the incredible efficiency of electric motors. Tesla is the clear leader in EV battery technology, and it’s looking to take another step forward. Reuters has a great report on the company’s new low-cost batteries, which will be introduced in Chinese-market Model 3s. Thanks to new designs that rely on less, or no cobalt usage, these batteries will apparently allow Tesla to sell its cars for as much (or more) profit as similarly priced gasoline cars.
These batteries should last for 1 million miles, and can send excess power back into the energy grid. Tesla has ambitions to become an electricity supplier in addition to an automaker, and these new batteries will play a big role. And yes, eventually, U.S.-market Teslas will get them, too. It’s too early to say whether these new batteries will be a game-changer, but things sound promising.
Formula 1 Shares Provisional 2020 Calendar With Teams
The 2020 Formula 1 season is expected to get off to a late start in July at the Red Bull Ring, and a schedule for more races is coming together. Autosport reports that the series shared a provisional calendar with F2 and F3 teams, giving us our best look at the revised 2020 season. The season will kick off with back-to-back weekends in Austria, with a week’s break before another pair of weekends at Silverstone. The following race will be at either Hockenheim—which didn’t originally have a race on the 2020 calendar—or Barcelona, with the Hungaroring, Spa, and Monza to follow. After that point, F1 will head east to race at Baku and Sochi, with rounds at Bahrain and Yas Marina to close the season in December.
St. Pete Set to Hold IndyCar Finale
IndyCar traditionally holds its season-opener at the St. Petersburg, Florida street circuit, but that race was cancelled at the very last minute this year. Now, it’s going to be the last race on the 2020 calendar. The series made the announcement yesterday, with plans to race at St. Pete on October 25th. Tickets for the original St. Pete race date will be honored for the new date.
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