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Obalende clash: Lagos NURTW, RTEAN sign peace accord

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Lagos chapters of the National Union of Road Transport Workers and the Road Transport Employer Association of Nigeria have met over control of garage operations that recently led to a clash in the Obalende area of the state.

The meeting which lasted for four hours was convened by the state government and held in Ikeja.

Special Adviser to the Governor on Transportation, Oluwatoyin Fayinka, presided over the meeting with two unions representatives, led by their Chairmen, NURTW, Alhaji Musiliu Akinsanya, (MC Oluomo) and the Vice Chairman RTEAN, Chief Gbenga Elesho, in attendance.

Fayinka stated that the meeting became necessary in view of the recent clash between both parties at Obalende Lagos, on Thursday, February 11, 2021 and the need for the immediate resolution to forestall a reoccurrence.

Responding to the issue that degenerated into the clash, the Lagos State Treasurer for NURTW, Mr. Mustapha Adekunle, (Sego) stated that the disagreement was over the control of park unit of which both parties had agreed on its operation.

He further explained that the agreement which has to do with operation of tricycles in one of the units under the control of RTEAN was denied access by NURTW for their minibuses operation.

Confirming the Ttreasurer’s position on the issue, MC Oluomo said the boundary operation crisis that ensued between the unions could have been averted like many others that could have degenerated into crisis had been amicably settled in the past.

He reiterated the peaceful coexistence between both parties, calling for peaceful resolution.

On the part of RTEAN, the State Secretary, Mr. Amusan Olalekan, also explained that the clash was avoidable going by the agreement of both unions to maintain the peace which had existed for long.

The RTEAN’s Vice Chairman, Chief Gbenga Elesho, stated that some other parks which were initially under the control of his union had been taken over by NURTW, part of which cumulated into the clash.

Addressing the two parties on the need for amicable settlement, the Special Adviser urged both parties for suggestions that would enhance peaceful resolution.

At the end of the deliberation, both parties agreed that pending the return of tricycle operation by NURTW at Obalende, RTEAN will continue with the operation of their minibuses, with welfare fees paid to NURTW.

“This peaceful agreement will be signed by both parties at the Ministry of Transportation,” said Fayinka.

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Honda discontinues fuel-cell vehicle, Clarity

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Honda says it has stopped production of the Japanese market Odyssey minivan and Legend sedan due to low sale of the hydrogen vehicles.

A Honda official told Autoweek, “We discontinued the RLX after the 2020 model year, so we haven’t had it in the lineup for about a year now.”

Honda launched the Clarity six years ago, and even though it’s going away it has not ruled out working on more hydrogen technology in the future.

“The entire Clarity series played a valuable role in advancing Honda’s portfolio approach to electrification, which is an important aspect of our commitment to reduce CO2 emissions,” the official said.

The official also said, “Now, with a commitment to carbon neutrality by 2050, Honda has set a target to make 100% of our vehicles sales battery-electric or fuel-cell electric by 2040.

“We are evolving our strategy with a focus on increased application of our two-motor hybrid system to core models in advance of the introduction of our first volume BEV models in 2024,” Honda told us.

“Consistent with this strategy, Honda will conclude production of the Clarity Plug-in Hybrid and Clarity Fuel Cell in August 2021. This will ensure we have the Clarity Fuel Cell available for lease through 2022, and Honda will continue to support our Clarity customers in the marketplace.

The automaker noted that the fuel cell EV would play a key role in our zero emissions strategy, “which is being advanced by our joint manufacturing and development agreements,” Honda told us. “We continue to make significant investments in fuel-cell infrastructure and battery technology.”

To that end, Honda’s partnership with General Motors to develop fuel-cell vehicles and EVs is expected to continue.

The Clarity, Legend, and Odyssey were all built Honda’s Sayama plant, scheduled to close in March 2022.

The Clarity Fuel Cell was a lease-only car and it has been reported that a poor hydrogen refueling infrastructure contributed to slow demand for the model.

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BMW begins road tests of hydrogen EV X5

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BMW has begun real-world tests of its i-Hydrogen Next, an X5 paired with EV and hydrogen tech.

The BMW i Hydrogen Next is an all-electric vehicle fueled by the reaction of hydrogen and oxygen in a fuel cell. The German automaker firmly believes that hydrogen fuel cell technology can replace internal combustion engines, plug-in hybrids (PHEVs), and battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) as the future of mobility.

Toyota and BMW are collaborating on hydrogen cars, with BMW planning to launch the i Hydrogen Next in 2022.

The i Hydrogen Next will see limited production, as BMW plans to devote more energy to EVs in the coming years.

According to multiple sources including Overdrive and Slashgear, both online auto journals, the testing that began this week will aim to tune the software controlling the car’s driving and operating functions, the automaker has said, following static tests of the fuel cell system and hydrogen tanks.

BMW has been experimenting with hydrogen fuel cell technology for decades.

But BMW’s efforts in this field are still a few rungs below Toyota and Honda, which have already fielded hydrogen fuel cell cars.

“Hydrogen fuel cell technology can be an attractive option for sustainable drive trains – especially in larger vehicle classes,” says Frank Weber, member of the Board of Management of BMW AG responsible for Development.

“That is why road testing of near-standard vehicles with a hydrogen fuel cell drive train is an important milestone in our research and development efforts.”

According to the automaker, hydrogen fuel-cell drivetrains could become an attractive alternative to EVs, but with a planned small-series production it’s not quite going all-in, unlike Toyota and a few other automakers that have marketed unique sedan designs for years.

BMW is also aiming to get practical experience using this drivetrain in real-world conditions.

The i Hydrogen Next will pair BMW’s eDrive technology already rolled out in vehicles like the iX3 with a hydrogen fuel cell technology developed along with Toyota—one of the other major players in this field.

The vehicle is largely based around architecture and technology borrowed from existing vehicles, rather than being a model developed entirely from scratch, which suits the model’s planned small-series production volume.

The SUV promises 374 hp—the same as the most powerful inline-six gas engine in the automaker’s lineup, as BMW points out.

“The energy stored in the performance buffer battery is generated in a particularly efficient way during driving by recovering energy from coasting overrun and braking phases,” the automaker said.

It also stated, “The hydrogen needed to supply the fuel cell is stored in two 700-bar tanks made of carbon-fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP), which together hold six kilograms of hydrogen.

“Its precisely controlled reaction with oxygen in the fuel cell generates electricity, while water vapor is the only emission produced by the drive train.

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TSS Motors showcases superb features of new Asiastar luxury bus

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Transit Support Services Limited (TSS Motors), has showcased its newly introduced Asiastar luxury bus as combining ruggedness with comfort and smooth ride throughout every journey and the entire life of the vehicle.
The auto assembler says this in a statement by its Head of the Public Relations and Media team, Iyere Ikhide.
It states that the new product brand and models unveiled in November 2020, at the Ikeja Sheraton Hotels, Lagos, comes with 53-passenger seater, non-independent air-conditioned luxury coach found suitable for commercial passenger transport, football club and sports teams’ transportation, government executive shuttle services, with an advanced concept in body design and architecture.
According to TSS, the luxury bus has been equipped with adjustable soft passenger seats with USB charger, LCD TV (front, middle), DVD, and a modern ambient lighting design on the roof.
It says, “The U-beam body structure of the Asiastar luxury bus has length, width and height of 12000, 2550 and 3860 (mm) respectively.
“It is equipped with WP10.336N/WD615 engine models, fast 6DS (Benz GO230-6 as optional) gearbox, a Pneumatic double circuit air brake system, and air suspension shock absorbers.
“It comes with a unique set of headlamps which are divided into two parts, with full LED lighting, making the front view elegant and very beautiful.
The statement quotes the General Manager, TSS Motors, Mr Dave Chukwudulue, as saying, “TSS Motors is known for her state of the art, top of the line products which conform to the latest design trends in the automobile industry.
“With the Asiastar luxury coaches, the operators and passengers of these coaches will not be disappointed on any point of our standard offerings before now.”
The GM also says, “And as with our other products, our key selling points for the Asiastar luxury coaches are effective and efficient after-sales service and parts support backup, cost-effective, durable, robust, rugged, comfortable and smooth luxury ride, all through the distance and operational life of the vehicle.
“And no matter the operational application: as commercial passenger luxury coach, government executives’ group shuttle, football club and sports teams’ logistics medium, the Asiastar is configured and built to deliver, and even surpass on all, expectations, without fail.
“Furthermore, the vehicles are on the ground for immediate delivery on receipt of payment. It’s cash and carry. No delivery lead time, with attendant costs on capital outlay prior to operations.”

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