Why SIN CARS is unlike any other start-up?
The business in the field of automotive industry started in 2012. with the creation of the company "SIN CARS International" Ltd. and the first Bulgarian sports and racing car SIN R1. Its homologation for the GT4 World Championship and sales on 3 continents are evidence of experience and success realization of the company's products. After nearly 10 years of testing, prototyping, participation in competitions and numerous exhibitions, we created and established the SIN brand CARS not only in Europe but also in Australia and America.
In 2016 we got European car manufacturer approval.
The costs incurred for the development and testing of vehicles and the company's electric vehicles, marketing investments to promote products, technological progress, as well as the costs of participating in fairs and exhibitions, are already a fact. The initial stage of the investment has been passed, which means that the critical point for the company has been overcome.
In connection with the attempts to reduce harmful emissions and electrification worldwide, the project of the company to produce electric cars is the natural continuation of the business in the direction of applying the accumulated knowledge and experience.
A number of young automotive companies, producing EVs have attracted significant investments form the giants in the industry. How will SIN CARS continue to be competitive? Are large automotive companies interested in SIN CARS as potential investment opportunity?
In our opinion, currently we don’t have a lot of serious competition in this niche we’re operating. To be more specific – light commercial vehicles dedicated to “last mile delivery” and urban transportation of goods in the central city areas.
Back in 2019, when our concept was introduced in Europe for the first time at the Geneva expo, we’ve had proposals from automotive companies. We decided to develop this concept and turn in into a product and then explore opportunities for future cooperation. A good moment to connect further with potential partners will be after we present our vehicles in Germany.
If you take Arrival for example, they moved to the USA and the time frame for production and releasing of their van on the market expanded. We believe that our company can raise interest in large automotive companies and other investors.
What models electric vehicles has SIN CARS developed? What is their status?
Since the presentation of the conceptual model of L CITY in September 2018. in Sofia so far, we have been working on the development, design, and testing of prototypes in relevant environment. We are currently producing the first electric cars from the final version for serial production. With the start of the homologation process with TUV SUD and plans to complete the first models by the end of 2021, we have stated our readiness to we start production in 2022. We started with the most sought-after realization of our platform, namely the electric car for the supply business in the central city zones (Last Mile Delivery).
L CITY Utility will be produced in 2 different varieties
- Pickup and Koffer.
Each model has a separate purpose and is available in modifications depending on the volume and weight of the payload. This uniquely developed concept gives us the advantage of producing various models electric cars built on the same platform. Pre-series test models are ready for homologation and can be seen in our factory in Ruse.
Which parts will be purchased by other companies? What contracts does SIN CARS have with such companies?
SIN CARS will produce approximately 50% of the components used in L CITY - chassis, brackets, suspension, battery, coupe, interior and exterior parts - the platform as a whole. The rest is bought from approved and proven OE suppliers (suppliers for first installation in the automotive industry). With over 90% of them we have lasting contractual relations and a smooth wokrflow.
After the pandemics and with the ongoing crises for the conventional car industry, parts and components manufacturers are looking for new customers and are interested in work with us. Initial orders have already been placed for larger series of details, such as windows, gearboxes, electric motors, steering, etc.
What kind of batteries will be used in the L CITY? Who will supply them and what are their main characteristics?
The battery is entirely our development. It will be assembled on our assembly line, which we plan to grow into a separate plant in Ruse. We buy lithium-ion cells with proven qualitiy from a reliable supplier and we configure them according to our needs - respectively in different packages. Thus we achieved complete independence from outside suppliers for the main unit in our electric car.
Our production technology allows us to configure batteries for both larger vehicles and for stationary energy storage facilities. The buy-back and recycling system guarantees environmental protection. We’ve spent three years testing and experimenting with different types of batteries and cells guarantees us the right choice about what is best for our electric cars. Our base battery has a capacity of 60kW / h, rated current 432 A, rated voltage 144 V.
Where will electric vehicles be sold?
Our intention is to focus our efforts mainly on the German and Western Europe markets. Our ambition is to expand and establish assembly plants in other countries, such as England, Belgium, the Netherlands, the USA, etc.
Bulgaria is very important for us as a domestic market and we will do everything possible to provide optimal conditions for our local customers.
How big is the market for such electric vehicles?
New regulations on harmful carbon dioxide emissions are putting pressure on us globally. Car manufacturers are increasingly turning to electric cars toavoid huge fines for breaking the "green" rules.The EU sets extremely strict regulations for car companies by forcing them to reduce their carbon emissions by 40% between 2007 and 2021. In December 2018 the EU has additionally decided to further reduce CO2 emissions by 37.5% by 2030 compared to the levels of 2021. The overall emission limit for all new owned cars until 2021 was set at 95 grams of CO2 per kilometer.
The new regulations provide for fines of € 95 for each gram of CO2 above this limit. According to Evercore ISI calculations, based on emissions levels in 2018 carmakers face fines totaling up close
33 billion euros.
In addition to pollution regulations, EU countries, as well as the United States and China, they also offer significant grants for the purchase of electric cars, which are expected to continue to growing. The largest country in the EU, Germany, is expected to surpass Norway soon as a major market for electric cars in Europe. Berlin is currently giving incentives in the form of an environmental bonus of EUR 4,000 for electric vehicles.
A newly adopted climate change package provides bonuses for purchase of electric cars with a price of up to 40 thousand euros to reach 6000 euros, which to compensate the upfront cost of paid for an electric car compared to those for a car with an internal engine
combustion (internal combustion engine).
The introduction of traffic restrictions in the central parts of the city for cars with internal combustion engines in some of the largest cities in Europe, also expands market potential.
All these factors predetermine one outcome - the market ahead of us will continue to grow.
Where will the vehicles be produced? Where is your production plant located? What equipment and installations have you set up so far? What else will be necessary to provide so it would be entirely functional and independent? What is it’s production capacity and can it be expanded?
The main parts and components for the L CITY platforms will be manufactured in our existing base in Ruse with an area of 6000 sq.m. We are planning a gradual increase of capacity with increasing orders through the introduction of robotic cells for welding of chassis and suspension components. After filling the capacity of the existing building stock, we also have a regulated plot of land with an area of 12,000 sq.m., thanks to which we will be able to plan the next stage of development. It will be used for the construction of an brand new plant, the investment for which will amount to BGN 5 million. The modular structure of production allows it to grow gradually and investment respectively to be done in stages.The planned capacity with the existing building stock is up to 20platforms per day with one-shift operation. That means 5,000 electric cars per year. The final assembly of the platforms and parts for the body produced in Ruse, as well as the assembly of the battery to the chassis will take place near Munich, Germany.
Bulgaria is not known as a country with strong traditions in the automotive industry. One of the most complicated problems will be finding qualified employees. How will you recruit the employees you need?
In the 1960s, Bulgaria and Balkancar were world leaders in the production of electric trucks.
Besides the high-tech American Curtis company (which was a major partner of Balkancar) for the production of controllers for electric trucks and cars, you have kept the production in Sofia to this day, Bulgaria currently has more than 170 companies from the automotive industry in Europe branches or representative offices. Some of them have thousands of highly qualified employees staff. There are over 10 companies in this segment in Ruse alone. On the other hand, the method of matrix, robotic production makes the most efficient use of workforce.
The assembly of the finished parts and components will be done manually and will require basic technical knowledge and assembly skills. We believe that young people even without experience, but with a clear interest in the field, they could get what they need training and opportunity for successful performance with us. Let's not forget our partnership with The University of Ruse. Students studying in technical specialties, they definitely have the basis and the necessary potential to be gain knowledge and experience with us.
What is MM and how does it enable SIN CARS to become more competitive? If it is so efficient, why aren’t large automotive companies using it?
MM comes from "Matrix Manufacturing", in other words - "matrix production". Is not invented by us. All new companies in the industry have focused on this model production. This is an extremely convenient system consisting of matrix cells with one or several robots. The difference from serial production lines is that with one cell (via
replacement of software and partly of hardware) two cars can be produced at the same time. And with the increase in production orders, the number cells in the matrix will gradually increase. This approach reduces to almost zero the levels of the original investment in machinery and equipment.
The system allows the cells to be rebuilt at
need to connect in different configurations and change the jobs for
production at the touch of a button. The method of production of
the chassis uses only prefabricated steel and aluminum profiles, which prevents the initial investment in huge production lines with heavy machinery for processing and pressing of sheet steel. Methods of production and design of conventional cars do not allow the MM model to be fully applied to them, and the factories and production lines for their production have already been built and the new one
production must be adjusted to them.
China has plenty of manufacturers, who can produce similar vehicles at competitive prices and in high volumes. How will SIN CARS cope with that?
Chinese producers have very limited access to the European market and have no interest in 20-30 thousand cars per year to enter a market like ours. Another disadvantage for them is their quality,
which is relatively low due to the low price. We all know about the problems in cargo transport from the East. Other companies, such as Arrival and Rivian, built entirely their concepts of the American market without taking into account competition from the East.
Who are the potential customers SIN CARS is focusing on? Why would they choose you?
We are focused on the business that needs a good solution for its deliveries.
The multifunctionality of the platform and the assembly to individual order will help us allow us to provide an individual solution for each of our clients. Our target group customers are the full range of traders (shops, manufacturers, pharmacies, restaurants, courier companies, postal services, travel service providers and etc.). Our product has a good price and the required quality, is in line with the needs of the business and will offer a major facility for many companies. As a business solution, using vans for their activities, which do more than 100 km daily mileage L CITY will be a particularly attractive and correct solution, which in 10 years will recoup the investment made for the purchase of the electric car.
Do you have inquiries from potential clients already?
We have signed agreements of intent to purchase electric cars with several from the largest companies in Bulgaria, such as Sopharma, Transpress, Econt, IRIM, Elite Car, CBA supermarkets, etc. After the presentation of L CITY in Germany, we will announce the future ones
our customers from Europe.