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July News in Brief

01 July, 2008

º  General Motors is considering building European versions of its Volt electric car at Vauxhall’s Ellesmere Port plant on Merseyside. The Volt, which is powered mainly by batteries but includes a small engine to charge the batteries and extend its 80km range, could be run on off-peak electricity costing less than £150 a year. It is due to go on sale in the US in 2010 and the UK version could cost around £20,000.

º  More than half of RS Components’ Electronics and Electromechanical (EEM) division sales are now coming from the company’s Web site for the first time. The milestone has been reached nine months ahead of RS’ target. An increasing number of products are now available only via the Web site.

º  Korenix, a Taiwanese manufacturer of industrial Ethernet devices, has set up a UK sales and support company, based in Redditch. Korenix (UK) will offer a range including Ethernet switches, device servers, Power-over-Ethernet switches, and embedded industrial PCs. It claims that its prices will typically be about 20% lower than rival European products. Andy Cross has been appointed sales manager.

º  Modular Automation International is offering customers the option of leasing bespoke assembly equipment as an alternative to outright purchase. The leasing contract allows customers to spread the cost of an installation over a period of up to five years with no up-front payments. The lease payments are an allowable expense against tax. Equipment with a capital value of £250,000 will typically cost around £1,270 a week to lease.


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