Category Archives: autonomous vehicles

JLR to Use Irish Smart City Hub for Self-Driving Tests?

Timing is everything. Amid the Brexit disaster, Jaguar Land Rover is working with global software, mobility and telecoms companies to create a smart city hub in Ireland. If this ever comes about on the scale envisioned, it will allow real-world testing of connected technology where self-driving vehicles share the streets with cars, pedestrians and cyclists. The testbed will be in the Limerick-Shannon metropolitan area at Shannon Free Zone, Shannon, Co. Clare. The future of Irish trade, political sovereignty and access to the EU is dependent on the resolution of Brexit. Jaguar Land Rover is the UK’s largest automotive manufacturer. Continue reading

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General Motors to Add 3000 New Jobs to Advance Virtual Testing and Software Skills

“As we evolve and expand our software expertise and services, it’s important that we continue to recruit and add diverse talent,” said GM President Mark Reuss. “This will clearly show that we’re committed to further developing the software we need to lead in EVs, enhance the customer experience and become a software expertise-driven workforce.” Continue reading

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FAW J7+ Autonomous Truck Passes Chinese Certification

China with its own vast market and a Communist central government that can quickly decree and implement policy – think Covid response or Trump’s defeat in the trade war he started – would seem to have an advantage here. It is lucky for western automakers that Chinese industrial policy allowed them to operate there but only with local partners. How the pie is sliced outside of China when and if the exports become voluminous will be subject to much behind the scenes maneuvering and uncomfortable board meetings Continue reading

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Covid – Drastic Changes to Commuting Have Slight Effect on Feelings about EVs and Self-Driving Technologies?

While the ongoing Covid plague has drastically changed American lives, what’s not new is that Inexperience and Lack of Knowledge Remain Barriers for Acceptance of EVs and Self-Driving Technologies. Nonetheless, automakers are investing heavily in electrification and self-driving technology despite an absence of substantive consumer interest in either. Continue reading

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Mercedes-Benz 2021 Model Year Sees SUV Expansion

The all-new GLA now joins the range “as the attractive and sporty gateway” (translation – small and less expensive) to the Mercedes-Benz SUV line. SUV segments have never been more competitive with M-B facing stiff competition from BMW, Porsche, Lexus, Infiniti, Alfa Romeo and Cadillac, among others.   Continue reading

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Toyota and Amazon Web Services Working on Connected Cars, Ridesharing, Driving Behavior-Based Insurance…

It’s the latest example of  an emerging trend among automakers to offer owners and lessees thus far unclear advantages of processing and analyzing data from vehicle use from Toyota’s growing worldwide fleet of connected vehicles. Nowhere in the announcement was an acknowledgement that the use of such customer data raises vast unaddressed privacy, security and law enforcement concerns. Continue reading

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Milestones: Intelligent Traffic Management Now Deployed at Center for Applied Research in Reno Nevada

One reason the lidar sensors have been placed at crossing signs and intersections is because lidar used today does not allow for facial recognition. In theory smart by anonymous city applications can preserve trust among the public. However, the US is far from even thinking about privacy, let alone articulating a policy about private data use as evidenced by Google and Twitter and Facebook among many other rich and powerful corporations that own politicians. Continue reading

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Michigan and Cavnue to Create Autonomous Vehicle Lanes Linking Ann Arbor and Detroit

The project will draw on an advisory committee of automotive and autonomous mobility companies, including Ford, GM, Argo AI, Arrival, BMW, Honda, Toyota, TuSimple, & Waymo. Notably absent is Fiat Chrysler. (See AutoInformed.com on “Bye Bye FCA and PSA. Hello Stellantis”) Continue reading

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MIT Research: Widespread Autonomous Driving is at Least One Decade Away. Maybe More.

The longer rollout time for Level 4 autonomy provides time for sustained investments in workforce training that can help drivers and other mobility workers transition into new careers that support mobility systems and technologies. Continue reading

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Bye Bye FCA and PSA. Hello Stellantis

The Stellantis name will be used exclusively at the Group level, as a Corporate brand. The next step in the process will be the unveiling of a logo that with the name will become the corporate brand identity. The names and the logos of the Stellantis Group’s basic brands will remain unchanged. What actually happens to the brands is an entirely different matter. Continue reading

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Chinese CATL and Honda Alliance to Make EV Batteries, Technology and Maybe Autonomous Vehicles

The companies said the agreement will enable them to begin discussions on a broad range of areas including joint development, stable supply, and the recycling and reuse of batteries. Honda is spreading the risk and costs and hedging its bets on battery electric vehicles, the development of which is threatened by the ongoing Covid crisis that has already cost automotive companies billions of dollars. A key byproduct of EVS is autonomous vehicles – which may not justify the investment required for a decade or more. Continue reading

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First Look: 2021 Ford F-150 Pickup

The launch will be closely watched by industry observers – the number of build combinations seems needlessly large, and Ford needs to prove it can launch the best selling pickup in the US without the problems it experienced on the Explorer.
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Ford Motor in Corktown and Newlab Working on – What Else – Vehicle Connectivity, Autonomy and Electrification

Two years ago, pre-Covid, but nevertheless financially challenged Ford bought 1.2 million square feet in Corktown, Detroit’s oldest neighborhood, including the historic Michigan Central Station, with plans to establish a new mobility innovation district dubbed Michigan Central. Mostly press releases have followed since then. Continue reading

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BMW and Mercedes-Benz Stop Automated Driving JV

In what appears to be the automotive equivalent of marriage counseling or an analysis of the financial aspects of a pre-nup, the companies said: Following extensive review, the two companies have arrived at a mutual and amicable agreement to concentrate on their existing development paths – which may also include working with current or new partners. Continue reading

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Milestones: Volkswagen Completes Promised Argo AI Funding

The numerous problems confronting Ford Motor and Volkswagen AG revolve around a central issue: Whether the two global giants and hundreds of thousands of workers can work together or consume shareholder capital at astonishing, company threatening rates without producing the promise efficiencies – on time and on budget. Continue reading

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