AD #1659 – Sales Threatened by Wage Growth, Tesla Tops Jag, Freightliner Autonomy

July 16th, 2015 at 11:41am

Runtime: 9:05

- Wage Growth is the Biggest Threat to Sales
- Diesel Sales Stall Out
- Tesla Tops Jaguar
- VR and 3D Printing Make Factories Safer
- Freightliner’s Autonomous Truck

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16 Comments to “AD #1659 – Sales Threatened by Wage Growth, Tesla Tops Jag, Freightliner Autonomy”

  1. Buzzerd Says:

    ” platooning” not a good idea on two lane roads. It’s seems hard enough to get people to pass big trucks, now stick 3 together and it becomes nearly impossible.

  2. Lex Says:

    I find that it is no surprise that Tesla is out selling Jaguar. The styling of both vehicles especially the XF and Model S are very similar.
    The advantage of the Model S is that you do not have to pay for gasoline and you get a tax credit also.

  3. J Hundertmark Says:

    #1 – Agree with no platooning on 2 lane roads, however, this will not be an issue until well into the future, and if allowed, can be restricted to interstate highways similar to where double trailers are currently in operation.

  4. Bradley Says:


    The Platoons will be moving much faster and only be limited by law and the little old lady in front of them.

    Plus…what we’ll we care? We will be watching Sponge Bob in our Autonomous car behind the platoon.

  5. Bradley Says:

    I am very happy with my VW Diesel Sportwagen.

    Even if fuel isn’t $5 a gallon. Getting low 40s MPG in a sporty comfortable car always brings a smile to my face.

  6. HtG Says:

    wages and rates

    It’s interesting that Szakaly says wages are the Number One concern. I guess stock gains lengthened loan terms shouldn’t be expected to be the decisive factor. Are we tapped out?

    ALD show note

    Wow, Autoline pretty much has exclusive news today in the auto universe. Must see, indeed.

  7. G.A.Branigan Says:

    Diesels: In my area diesel is cheaper then reg gas.However this isn’t the case around the rest of the country from what I understand.If the rest of the country had cheaper the reg gas,diesel fuel,there would be sales spike for diesels for sure.

  8. MJB Says:

    Isn’t “platooning” just drafting with a different name? That’s been around for decades. And did I notice a shroud covering both rear axles (the wheels & tires, I mean) on the tractor? If so, they’re really taking everything into consideration with the aerodynamics of this Freightliner.

    On the correlation between median wages and new vehicle sales, this will likely be the number one factor preventing hybrids and electric vehicles from selling as well as they could for many years to come. The average Joe (who stands to benefit more from the gas savings than any other segment) can’t afford the premium pricing of those vehicles.

    Tesla sales, while encouraging, are accounted for by the affluent market segment. With the Model S selling for $75k, this group of consumers is one of those least impacted by high gas prices.

  9. Chuck Grenci Says:

    Perhaps diesel vehicles have reached their saturation in the U.S. (at least for now). As mentioned in an earlier post, diesel fuel and gasoline are very close in cost, and depending on area of the country are even flip/flopped. The extra miles per gallon, with similar fuel costs, should give the nod to the diesel but we don’t see that; diesel purchases are a lot more influenced on other personal preferences, with fuel costs, only one consideration. And for a variety of other reasons the same can be probably said for the electric factions. It is not a direct A to B comparison (fuel to mpg); there are a lot of grey areas used to make these decisions.

  10. aliisdad Says:

    The Freightliner story was very interesting!! While I cannot see “cars without drivers” in use for a long time, if ever, due to liability and final technology issues; I can see it first on the interstate highway system… I also can see where it might be great for trucks…
    However, I am also concerned about “platooning”… While it makes complete sense on long flat interstates, there might be problems holding up traffic in mountains and secondary roads…
    Where we live, you must go over some mountains to get out of town in most directions… I often drive on the interstate roads over the mountains, and the actions of many truck drivers are making it very unsafe… The problems is that the trucks pull into the “fast” lanes with very little consideration to other drivers, and you just have to pull onto the side or slam on your brakes to get out of the way… Sometimes, these trucks slow to 20-30 mph ON THE INTERSTATE!!! These drivers surely know what they are doing, and it is VERY unsafe…. Clearly they do not care about anyone but themselves.. In fact, the state added some extra lanes in the mountain areas for slow moving trucks, yet some of the drivers still go into the left lanes… Unfortunately, there probably not enough officers to catch them as would be great!!
    So, I would hope the platooning of automated trucks would eliminate the dangers of these jerks driving some of the trucks… It should be more efficient as well as safer, too..
    Again, I think it should be interstate-type highways only, though..
    By the way, I want to make it clear that it is NOT every truck driver, and as is the case in all of our professions just a few jerks hurt the reputation of the profession…

  11. HtG Says:

    Caution: Operant Conditions Ahead

    Chevy conditions real viewers about bears and steel.

  12. G.A.Branigan Says:

    The immediate problem I see with ‘platooning’ is weight of the respective trucks.Because they are big doesn’t necessarily mean they all weigh the same,and that would become very evident when climbing in the mountains as Aliisdad pointed out.Which btw happens to me all the time with big trucks who decide not to drop a gear to keep traffic going,they will pull out into the fast lane and slow everyone down to a crawl.

  13. Kit Gerhart Says:

    As others have said, “platooning” on the 2 lanes will be a real pain for the rest of us, since the autonomous platoons will probably go exactly the speed limit. People don’t seem comfortable passing something as long as, say, a Mini. I normally drive 5-6 mph over the speed limit on the Indiana 2 lanes. People will charge up from behind at 75 mph, and then tailgate for miles, but not pass, even with many opportunities. What a mess it will be with these platoons. I will actually need to see a mile of clear road to overtake something 200 feet long with my Mini or Prius.

  14. HtG Says:

    Doesn’t the trucking industry face a dearth of drivers? If you could platoon 4 semis, that’s 3 drivers that don’t have to be paid to drive across the vast stretches of interstate in west. Go see those long lines of trucks moving along I-80. They’re not going the speed limit either. While platooning really could mess up 2 lane roads like we’re saying, I still see the benefit of autonomous control letting a commercial driver rest his eyes and mind while working. They’ll be more alert. Maybe we’ll even see a day when a truck will be able to let private drivers know when it’s safe to get in front of a truck or bus. Do truckers still flash their lights in Europe? (I’ve got a story about how I saw a semi get crammed from the right by a car and switched my lane to give him a clear lane. You want to watch a semi handle quick? ;) )

  15. Rob Says:

    Seems maybe freightliner should also consider a hybrid tractor. If trucks like cars only need a fraction of the HP to maintain speed and are platooning other trucks they may be able to switch to electric under certain conditions. Its not like they dont have pleanty of battery storage space under the trailer.

  16. Rob Says:

    Seems maybe freightliner should also consider a hybrid tractor. If trucks like cars only need a fraction of the HP to maintain speed and are platooning other trucks they may be able to switch to electric under certain conditions. Its not like they dont have pleanty of battery storage space under the trailer.