Tesla News Europe: Workers Create Works Council, Fastned Chargers Added to Navigation

Ever since Tesla announced it is building a manufacturing facility in Grünheide, Germany, people have been wondering about the “union issue”. It is well known that Elon Musk is not a friend of unions. So far, Tesla has managed to keep unions — especially the hated United Auto Workers — out of its factories in America. But unions are strong in Germany.

Recently, Daniela Cavallo, head of the Labor Council – so says a “union” in Germany – criticized Volkswagen President Herbert Dies for saying that up to 30,000 workers could lose their jobs if the company did not find a way to compete successfully with Tesla. Her comments were enough to force the mediation committee of the Volkswagen Board of Directors to hold an extraordinary session. That meeting took place this week, but the committee hasn’t taken any action yet, an insider said Reuters Things are “on the edge of the knife” when it comes to deciding whether Diess should stay or leave.

Diss, perhaps more than anyone else, was responsible for pushing the company, which employs nearly 675,000 people worldwide, to come back from the brink of disaster after being swamped by a diesel cheating scandal in 2015. It was Diss who directed the switch to electric. cars, but the job board’s opposition may cause him to update his LinkedIn resume.

according to Autoblog, IG Metall – one of the most powerful unions in German manufacturing – announced that seven employees have taken the first steps towards the creation of a work council and are planning to select the election commission on November 29.

The Labor Council ensures that the interests of the workforce have a voice and weight. “This is in keeping with the culture of democratic work in Germany,” said Birgit Dietz, district leader for IG Metall in Berlin, Brandenburg and Saxony. IG Metall said the Tesla plant near Berlin will employ 12,000 workers, but only about a sixth of them have been hired so far, meaning the election of a business council won’t take place soon.

IG Metall claims that Tesla wants to pay workers at its new plant in Germany 20% less than workers earn at other German car companies, and will make up the difference in stock options and bonuses rather than benefits negotiated through a collective bargaining process. Earlier this year, Musk was ordered to delete a 2018 tweet threatening that American employees would lose their stock options if they formed a union.

Musk was not shy about criticizing German laws and procedures. In a letter to the authorities in April, he claimed that the country’s complex planning requirements are at odds with the urgent need to combat climate change. Tesla has faced opposition over its factory in Grünheide by environmental groups concerned about clearing trees to make way for the building and the impact it would have on groundwater in an area already suffering from an occasional shortage of drinking water.

The prevailing attitude in the United States is largely anti-union, but it is very different in Germany where unions are an essential and valuable part of the economy. The indomitable Mr. Musk may find his anti-union hatred less welcome than it is back home. How this will turn out is anyone’s guess.

Tesla adds fast charging stations for navigation in Europe

In electric vehicle charging news, the convergence between Tesla’s supercharged network and European CCS-based charging networks is accelerating. As of this weekend, more than 160 Fastned charging stations in Europe will be included in Tesla’s navigation system along with Tesla’s own Superchargers. Tesla drivers will be able to see every Fastned location and power level, and navigate to a specific station with the ability to pre-configure the battery for faster charging.

Fastned’s fast-charging infrastructure is one of the best in Europe. Usually locations along major roads and stations offer multiple CCS Combo 2 chargers in a drive-through layout with a solar canopy. The reliability levels reported by the company are also very high. Tesla Model 3 and Model Y vehicles sold in Europe are equipped with a CCS2 compatible charging connector. Older Model S and Model X vehicles that have a Type 2 AC compatible charging connection will have to use the CCS2 adapter. Tesla drivers will need to have a Fastned account to use Fastned chargers.

Reducing the number of plugs and connectors electric vehicle drivers need to enjoy their vehicles while away from home will give a huge boost to the electric vehicle revolution.

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