Turkey exports technology to China

DMA and CALB become strategic partners for the electric cars that represent the future of the automotives industry.

DMA, one of only a handful of companies in the world with its own state-of-the-art technology in the business of electric vehicle manufacture, has begun exporting that technology to China. A joint venture with China-based CALB to develop “model-specific” electric drive systems for marques with manufacturing operations in China looks set to become a company with a one-billion-dollar valuation within five years’ time.

Derindere Motorlu Araçlar (DMA) Turkey’s first electric vehicle maker to be awarded EU All-Electric Vehicle Type approval certification is letting its technology go to China. Having signed an agreement with China Aviation Lithium Battery (CALB), a state-owned Chinese company and one of the world’s biggest battery manufacturers, DMA has entered into a strategically important partnership with that firm. After a team of CALB representatives from China tested one of DMA’s entirely home-designed, developed, and built vehicles in Turkey, one vehicle was shipped back to China to undergo further testing there. “China wants to be the global driving force in the manufacture of electric cars” says DMA’s CEO Önder Yol. “CALB’s people were very much impressed by the vehicles they saw and the results of the one we sent them for testing.” Catering to the world’s biggest market for automobiles, Chinese carmakers will be required to have at least 1% of their annual manufacturing output and sales consist of electric vehicles beginning in 2017. Under this rule, any manufacturer who fails to comply with the 1% sales target starting next year will have to pay a penalty based on the number of other vehicles that it makes and sells. China expects to have produced about 250 thousand electric cars by the end of this year alone. Carmakers are now importing DMA electric car technology into China in order to incorporate it into their manufacturing processes. 

Two years in negotiation 

According to DMA CEO Önder Yol, batteries are essential to electric vehicles and no company that fails to develop this crucial technology can hope to succeed: “Success in electric vehicles hinges on batteries and software. We enjoy a highly respected position among electric carmakers because of our entirely in-house produced software. The technology we’ve developed attracted attention in China, whose domestic automotives market is the biggest in the world with sales amounting to 23.5 million units a year. After a series of negotiations that lasted for close to two years, we entered into a partnership agreement with China Aviation Lithium Battery (CALB), a subsidiary operation of China Aviation, a state-owned company, and also one of the world’s biggest battery manufacturers.” Noting  that there are numerous small-to-medium sized electric carmakers in China but that the technology employed in the vehicles they make is far from adequate, Mr Yol adds “A vehicle doesn’t become electric just by installing an electric motor and battery on board. The secret to success in electric vehicles lies in the software that allows the energy and engine to be managed effectively. Our technology is what makes us stand out; it also played a significant role when the Chinese chose to work with us to make electric cars.” 

A one-billion dollar valuation in five years 

Noting that DMA had set up a joint venture called CADMA together with CALB, a publicly-traded joint-stock company registered in China, Önder Yol said “Under the agreement we’ve signed, the R&D and manufacturing operations for the drive systems that are to be developed for electric vehicles will continue in Turkey.” Mr Yol also pointed out that in order to engage in manufacturing in China, foreign investors are required to work in partnership with a local firm and that, for this reason, quite a few of the world’s leading carmakers might end up using DMA technology as well. DMA’s CEO continued saying “Under our agreement, we’ll be developing electric drive systems compatible with specific automobiles and we’ll be receiving an R&D fee from each marque that we integrate into production. What’s more, every marque that does business with CADMA will guarantee production of a minimum number of units. Our goal in this is to generate revenue streams based on output units. We anticipate CADMA boosting its turnover to one billion dollars within five years’ time. We’re currently engaged in talks with nearly every carmaker active in China’s domestic market today and we’ve already entered into several preliminary agreements to electrify the vehicles of some of them.” 

A battery factory in Turkey 

Remarking that the world’s leading technology firms have been undertaking significant ventures in electric cars of late, Önder Yol said that this was a point on which everyone is acting with a focus on the Chinese market. Radical decisions concerning the development and manufacture of electric vehicles taken by the Chinese government clearly reveal that balances in the automotives industry are going to change says Mr Önder, who adds “According to information we’ve received from Chinese sources, two of America’s biggest technology firms are talking with Chinese companies about batteries to be used in their vehicles. At this point however we in Turkey are already way ahead of them. Indeed we’ve entered into a preliminary agreement to set up a battery-making factory with CADMA once the conditions are right. The Chinese say that, in order to address the demand for electric vehicles that will arise from the manufacture of electric vehicles in Europe, they regard Turkey as a doorway leading into the EU. Our goal could be to set up a battery-making factory in Turkey that would, in the medium term, produce batteries both for the domestic market and for export.” 

Penalties and perks will spur demand for electrics 

Among the radical decisions that the Chinese government has taken concerning electric cars are penalties along with a substantial incentives mechanism notes Önder Yol, who says that were similar decisions to be taken in Turkey, awareness of and demand for electric vehicles could rapidly spread throughout this country as well. Mr Yol continued saying “China is taking rigorous measures not just for the sake of its automotives industry but also to reduce environmental impact and to contribute to energy conservation throughout the country as a whole as well. For example manufacturers receive a bonus of ten thousand dollars for every electric car that they sell in Beijing and other big cities and that figure rises to fifty thousand for light commercial vehicles and to a hundred thousand for buses. Central government perks for automobiles can rise as high as 45 thousand dollars in some cases depending on where the car’s going to be used. Shanghai’s municipality also pays a bonus of 15 thousand dollars for every electric vehicle and exempts such vehicles from license registration fees. Here in Turkey we should not be losing any time in introducing an incentives mechanism that will encourage electric vehicle production and the related industries needed to support it. 

Who offers what incentives?

Norway: Seeking to increase electric vehicle use, Norway has given priority to installing charging and parking stations in urban areas. Norway provides free parking and charging stations for electric vehicles and exempts such vehicles from all non-recurring vehicle fees, including purchase taxes. 

USA: A variety of monetary and non-monetary incentives are provided for electric vehicles in the United States. The first kind vary from state to state and may be offered in addition to a US federal tax credit of up to USD 7,500. The latter frequently consist of free parking and high-occupancy vehicle lane access rights.

Shanghai, China: Electric vehicles are exempt from license registration fees, which for owners means a perk worth about 10 thousand dollars a year. Thanks largely to such incentives, sales of electric cars in Shanghai in the first eight months of 2014 numbered 31,137 units, which was 328% higher than during the same period of the previous year. The number of hybrid vehicles and electric vehicles manufactured in China during January-August 2014 amounted to 6,621 and 16,276 respectively.

UK: Buyers receive a grant of GBP 5,000 against the purchase of a new electric car.

France: A bonus of EUR 7,000 is provided for the purchase of new electric cars.

Germany: Electric vehicles are exempt from road tax for ten years. 

Portugal: Portugal initially provided a government subsidy amounting to EUR 5,000 for the first 5,000 new electric cars sold in the country. A government-provided EUR 1,500 incentive also encourages owners to trade in non-electric cars when buying a new electric one. Electric cars are exempt from license registration fees.

Czech Republic: All electric vehicles are exempt from road tax if they are used for business purposes.

Greece: License registration fees are not charged on electric vehicles.

About CALB 

China Aviation Lithium Battery (CALB) is a leading Chinese firm engaged in the manufacture of entirely inhouse-designed batteries and power systems which it has developed for various applications and use by public agencies and organizations throughout the world. A major state-owned enterprise, CALB’s registered capital amounts to USD 140 million. Managing an investment portfolio worth USD 600 million, the company has more than 2,000 employees worldwide. Based in Luoyang, CALB was founded in 2009 with the aim of becoming the world’s biggest manufacturer of lithium-ion cells. The company’s strategic focus is on renewable energy storage, transportation, wind and photovoltaic energy storage, telecommunications, mining equipment, and railway transport. CALB manufactures high-capacity, high-performance lithium-ion cells that deliver long life cycles, high power density, excellent safety performance, low self-discharge rates, and unmatched low-temperature performance capabilities. Global in vision, CALB’s goal is to pursue rapid growth and become a world leader in electric vehicles and energy storage. The company has operations in the US, Europe, Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and many other markets around the world. Awarded ISO 9001 certification as a manufacturer of lithium-ion cells and energy storage systems, CALB seeks to provide the best battery solutions available now and in future in order to support the transition to a low-carbon economy and sustainable development at the global level. CALB is a subsidiary of China Aviation (AVIC), whose turnover amounted to USD 65 billion in 2014 and which employs more than 10 thousand people in countries around the world.



Developed inhouse by DMA’s own engineers, Turkey’s first and only electric taxicab hits the road

An electric-powered taxicab developed entirely by DMA’s own engineers has made its first appearance on the streets of İstanbul. Drawing considerable attention not only because of its eco-friendly electric motor but also because of its comfortable ride, the economics of the DMA Taxi make it an attractive option among taxi-drivers. “If all the cabs in İstanbul were electric, the savings in fuel costs could amount to a billion liras a year” says Önder Yol, DMA’s CEO, who adds that the DMA Taxi could have a significant impact on electric vehicle acceptance and use in Turkey as well. “The DMA Taxi achieves fuel economies that are more than 10 times better than those that are possible with any internal combustion engine, even diesel and LPG. It almost completely eliminates maintenance costs too.”

Derindere Motorlu Araçlar (DMA), the maker of Turkey’s first and only electric vehicle with about a 400 kilometer range on a single charge, has authored yet another first in Turkey with the introduction of the country’s first and only electric-powered taxicab, which is now plying the streets of Istanbul.

Thanks to its electric motor, the DMA Taxi’s “zero-emissions” operation means that it causes no environmental pollution at all while its quiet and exhaust odor- and vibration-free motor provide passengers with a comfortable ride unlike anything they’ve ever experienced before. DMA CEO Önder Yol thinks that once someone has ridden aboard an electric taxi, they’re going to be more choosy about the next cab they take and says “Eco-aware passengers who are also mindful of comfort in public transportation are going to prefer the DMA Taxi. We’re already seeing tremendous interest from cabdrivers not only because of the vehicle’s maintenance and fuel cost economies but also because its high resale value is all but guaranteed. Mr Yol adds that the DMA Taxi’s maintenance and fuel advantages mean that the vehicle can pay for itself in something like two years’ time.

“Fuel savings worth a billion liras can be achieved” 

Having noted that the DMA Taxi achieves fuel economies that are more than 10 times better than anything possible with any internal combustion engine, even diesel and LPG, Önder Yol went on to say “There’s about twenty thousand cabs on the streets of İstanbul alone nowadays. If all of them were electric, the savings in fuel costs could amount to something like a billion liras a year. A long-term objective though it may be, we think we should be advancing along the same path as the rest of the world. We also believe that there should be incentives that encourage the use of electric vehicles in general. 

“As DMA, our goal is to make a significant contribution to the emergence, development, and growth of electric vehicles and their support industries because we believe that electrics are in the world’s future and they should be in Turkey’s too. But we need a lot more support if that is going to happen as quickly as it ought to. Looking at practices in other countries, we see that Turkey needs a roadmap of its own. For example Germany has set a target of one million electric vehicles in use by 2020; in China, the number is four million. 

“In the UK there’s already talk of banning non-electrics from approaching within 50 kilometers of city centers after 2020. In fact beginning in 2018, taxicab license are only going to be issued to vehicles with electric motors. Some Scandinavian countries have granted the sector comprehensive tax exemptions and credits and are even supporting manufacturers to the tune of up to EUR 10,000 for every vehicle that they make. For our own part we’ve made important progress in the direction of electric vehicle manufacturing in our own country and the DMA Taxi represents a significant milestone along that path. We foresee that public awareness, acceptance, and use of electric vehicles is going to increase in parallel with the spread of DMA-made all-electric taxicabs.”

150 liras’ worth of fuel vs 12 liras worth of electricity

According to Mert Al, who drives the DMA Taxi, the vehicle is incomparably more economical than any other cab on the road while its superior passenger comfort also increases customer satisfaction. As the first İstanbul cabbie to use an electric-powered taxi, Mr Al says “The normal practice is for a cab to have two drivers: one working days and the other working nights. The day guy spends at least sixty liras a day (and usually more) for fuel while the night guy’s average is eighty. Between them they fork out something like a hundred and forty a day and in most cases more than 4,500 liras a month. I complete a day’s shift spending something like ten to twelve liras or so. Oil and maintenance are also big expense items for cab operators too. Because the DMA Taxi’s engine isn’t internal combustion, it doesn’t have any parts that need maintenance. That’s a real advantage for a taxi driver.”

Mert Al also says that recharging isn’t a problem either. “I must do 500 to 600 kilometers every day in the city. There’s a charging station at our taxi stand but I can recharge the battery at home as well. There’s already charging stations located in convenient places likeMecidiyeköy, Fulya, Levent, and Taksim and they’re opening up in even more parts of Istanbul so I have no problem on that score at all. I’ve done as much as 370 kilometers on a single charge in İstanbul’s traffic.”

Four hundred kilometers on a single charge 

Turkey’s first and only electric vehicle with about a 400 kilometer range on a single charge, the DMA Taxi uses 53 kWh lithium-ion batteries. Thanks to its fully-integrated recharging unit, it can achieve a range of 40 kilometers on just a 15-minute charge off a 380 V mains. If the batteries are completely discharged, they can be recharged in just two and a half hours. In Istanbul’s stop-and-go traffic a complete discharge is highly unlikely however because the on-board regenerative braking system achieves substantial economies by recovering power to the batteries. The DMA Taxi made its first appearance at the TaxiWorld fair held in Istanbul on 5-8 February 2015.

Turkey's first zero-emissions marathon

DMA electric cars serve as runtime tracking vehicles in the world’s only intercontinental marathon

Derindere Motorlu Araçlar (DMA), whose activities include developing electric vehicle technologies as well as building electric cars, authored yet another first in Turkey as the official vehicle sponsor for the Vodafone 36th Istanbul Marathon. Four all-electric DMA vehicles used to track the running times of participants in this year’s Green Marathon helped make sure that runners wouldn’t be affected by motor vehicle exhaust fumes.

Believing that electric vehicles have a future in Turkey and pursuing its efforts in this direction with no loss of momentum, DMA’s sponsorship of this year’s marathon generated broad public awareness by drawing attention to the environmental mission of electric vehicles for the first time in such a widely-attended sports event. 

In operation since 2007 and backed by many years of experience in both automotives and technology, DMA makes use of its inhouse-developed technology to transform automobiles into all-electric vehicles and market them. The 400-kilometer range that is achievable with the all-electrics that the company currently makes is regarded as the global standard for electric vehicles. Thanks to a fully-integrated recharging unit, batteries can be recharged to full capacity in just an hour and a half.


Electric cars that can do 280 kms on a single charge are on the road

Electric cars designed and built by Derindere Motorlu Araçlar (DMA) are now available for sale or lease. The vehicles, all of whose electronic hardware and software that are the most crucial elements of their technology were fully developed by DMA itself, can do about 280 kilometers on a single charge. The first and only vehicles in Turkey to be awarded all-electric type certification, DMA’s cars are outstanding in the sector by virtue of their unrivalled technology and range.

Founded in 2007 by Özkan Derindere and Önder Yol, Derindere Motorlu Araçlar (DMA) is turning out electric cars whose technology makes them a significant milestone in the Turkish automotives industry. The first and only vehicles in Turkey to be awarded all-electric type certification, cars equipped with DMA’s technology can do up to 280 kms on just a single charge. Connected to standard 220 V mains, a DMA all-electric can be fully recharged in about eight hours. Optionally, use can also be made of the increasingly greater number of EU type-2 standard-compatible charging stations that are making an appearance all over the country. DMA supplies its electric vehicles to companies and end-users under a range of sale and lease options. The sticker price of an all-electric is around 120 thousand liras while operational fleet leases cost about EUR 900 a month per vehicle.

“We have the capacity to make 1,200 electric cars a year” 

Explaining that their aim was to produce electric automobiles using DMA technology, DMA founding partnerÖzkan Derindere says that his company decided to invest in this business because it believes in the future of electric vehicles. “Our goal under this project is to make a positive contribution to both the automotives industry and to the national economy through both what we’ve achieved so far and what we’ll be doing in the future” says Mr Derindere, who added that the project is being financed entirely out of the firm’s own resources. “When you consider the benefits that these vehicles can offer, you realize that this is a project for everyone who wants to look to the future with confidence” he said. 

Mr Derindere continued saying “In the immediate term, our company’s objective is to make use of DMA technology to transform automobiles and light commercial vehicles into all-electric vehicles and market them. For the foreseeable future we intend to concentrate on a limited number of models in order to gain speed and volume. In the longer term however our project’s goal is to undertake substantial levels of investment in order to make DMA-branded products and to become a major player in this market.” 

At present says Mr Derindere the company has the capacity to produce 100 units a month and 1,200 a year. He added that once a satisfactory level of production has been reached, the company intends to begin investing in the manufacture of components here in Turkey and that preliminary agreements on this subject have already been signed with some of the world’s best parts makers.

Unrivalled range and battery advantages 

Önder Yol, DMA’s other founding partner and the one responsible for the project’s engineering aspects, says that for users interested in saving costs, the economics of electric vehicles are the priority while other  users are more concerned about environmental issues. 

Pointing out that all of the electronic hardware and software that are the most important elements of the vehicles’ technology were fully developed by DMA’s own engineers, Mr Yol said that their range and recharge capabilities were unrivalled. Concerning the vehicles’ production process he said “These vehicles go through about a thirteen-month cycle of testing and verification before they are put up for sale. Our first production run underwent something like half a million kilometers of testing under actual road conditions. DMA technology delivers high performance in the 225-325 Nm torque range with 40 kWh lithium batteries and 62 kW continuous (84 kW peak) power. When we supply a vehicle it comes with a 3-year, 100 thousand kilometer guarantee.” 

Superior technology makes the difference 

Alper Baykut, DMA’s R&D and production manager, says that vehicles equipped with DMA technology have technical features that make them superior and he points to a multimedia information system that keeps users constantly aware of the vehicle’s status and to remote access technology as just two examples of this. By providing driver and passengers with current, real-time information about such things as their vehicle’s charge, speed, and use, the DMA multimedia system interface enhances driving safety says Mr Baykut.

Mr Baykut also drew attention to the importance of technological collaboration between DMA and Turkcell, Turkey’s leading mobile phone operator, one product of which is a DMA Information Service app that has been developed exclusively for electric-powered vehicles. “Using this app it’s possible to conveniently access a host of information about vehicles equipped with DMA technology via a smartphone running the IOS or Android operating systems” says MrBaykut. “What’s more you can do this easily whenever you want and wherever you may be. In this way, you can keep track of a vehicle’s current charge status, range, remaining charge life, and a lot of other things in real time.” Concerning the app, whose superior technological features were specially designed for DMA, Turkcell’s assistant general manager for technologySemih İncedayı says “Electric vehicles are attracting more and more attention from more and more people and organizations because of their economics and their eco-friendly nature. We hope that these vehicles will be a hallmark of the future and it’s essential that they be supported with state-of-the-art technology. We designed this Turkcell service so that it would be really convenient for drivers and users like logistical departments to keep track of their DMA-made electric vehicles.”

Özkan Derindere for his part says that he was extremely pleased by the government’s sensitivity on the point of electric vehicles and that its approach to this issue was tremendously morale-boosting among all entrepreneurs and investors. “We’re not actively looking for partners, but were an offer to be made that we thought would contribute to the productivity and advancement of the project we would certainly give it consideration.”