The good old combustion engine motivated by fossil fuels has been the primary source of power for our vehicles for over a century however the motoring industry has changed drastically over the last decade or so and we’re seeing the beginning of mass-market electric vehicles. Governments all over the world are pushing for the adoption of EVs powered by rechargeable batteries in a bid to help reduce emissions and clean up the air (but they still pose harmful effects to the environment...) and although these vehicles have plenty going for them, they are not without their issues.
This month, Audi reportedly delayed deliveries of its first flagship EV, the E-tron due to problems in securing enough lithiumion batteries from its supplier LG Chem — who also makes them for Mercedes-Benz (along with respective parent companies Volkswagen Group and Daimler). Apparently, the waiting times for the E-tron have shot up from two months to possibly triple that according to reports. Also, the German carmaker could now build just 45,000 E-trons which is 10,000 less than was originally planned due to this supply issue which is allegedly being caused by LG Chem raising prices. Tesla thought it could bypass such issues by partnering with a renowned supplier like Panasonic however, this week, Elon Musk’s high-tech brand was thrown into disarray following a Model S spontaneously bursting into flames while sitting in a car parking lot in Shanghai. The fire — which took just under an hour to extinguish and with the assistance of 15 fire engines — totally consumed the car while also damaging vehicles around it.
This isn’t the first time that a Tesla has caught fire (it’s happened several times while charging and as a result of a collision...) but the company said it would be investigating how this latest disaster happened in China. And it isn’t just the automotive industry that is being affected by dodgy lithium-ion batteries — who could forget the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 debacle?
Clearly these batteries aren’t as safe as they’re made out to be yet...