AD #1762 – Ford Tests Ride Sharing Program, Continental’s Self-Tinting Windows, GM Uses Wind to Build SUVs

December 11th, 2015 at 11:49am

Runtime: 7:42

- Ford Tests Ride Sharing Program
- Ford Invests Billions into EV R&D
- GM Using Wind Power to Build SUVs
- Continental’s Self-Tinting Windows
- Chevy Malibu Posts Some Interesting #’s
- You Said It! NACTOY Edition

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19 Comments to “AD #1762 – Ford Tests Ride Sharing Program, Continental’s Self-Tinting Windows, GM Uses Wind to Build SUVs”

  1. GM Veteran Says:

    I keep hearing you guys say that ride sharing is going to reduce vehicle sales and dramatically change the auto industry. But how? It seems that ride sharing will help to increase the overall number of miles driven each year by making car-based transportation more accessible. More miles driven, (or at least the same number of miles), means the same number of cars sold, or more. The way I see it, the only thing that will change is the people buying them. Fewer people may buy cars, but they will buy them more frequently if they are involved in ride sharing, Uber, or something of the like.

  2. Chuck Grenci Says:

    I’m leaning towards what GM Vet says; I don’t see how any conclusions can be make (about the number of vehicles being bought) yet. A lot of different ideas are being floated and so far none has been able to be a clear directional change for the industry. Make predictions, sure, but it is going to be a myriad of different solutions that will divert from what has been historically current. And as far as historically current, even then, those trends have ebbed and flowed through the years.

  3. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I’d expect “ride sharing” to affect the auto industry dramatically, for two reasons. First off, if the total miles driven are the same, but these “shared” vehicles run more miles during their lifetime, which seems very likely, that is fewer cars sold.

    Another way the industry would be affected is that people buying cars for “ride sharing” won’t be likely to pay a $20K premium for a three pointed star, stylized “L”, etc, They will mostly use the most cost effective vehicles that will do the job.

    That’s my thought. Yes, others may vary.

  4. pedro fernandez Says:

    Ride sharing should force some providers to buy newer cars, since

    Uber does no allow old cars to be used for their services

  5. GM Veteran Says:

    #3: Kit, how will the shared vehicles run more miles during their lifetime than a non-shared vehicle? They are more likely to have a shorter life, due to many more miles being logged per year than a non-shared vehicle, but the expected total miles a vehicle will log in its lifetime should not change. And if the shared vehicles accumulate more miles per year and wear out faster, then they are replaced more often. Hence, overall vehicle sales volume will not change.

  6. MJB Says:

    I see ride-sharing effecting sales in this way: If you’ve got a bunch of next-gen folk coming into the auto-buying equation who would rather mooch off of someone else’s ride (ride-share, ride-mooch, call it what you will), it’s these very individuals who will opt out of buying a car because they know they can just call up a ride via their smartphone app anytime they need one.

    We don’t think that way, no. But the next gen of young folk will.

  7. G.A.Branigan Says:

    TOTY: How is a truck being defined now? They used to be body on frame pickups.How does the Volvo xc90 qualify as being a ‘truck’? Same with the Honda Pilot.How are they classed as trucks?

  8. MJB Says:

    I was wondering how long it would take for the push-button dimming of glass panels to reach the auto industry in mass.

    This technology has been available for architects to spec in buildings, conference rooms, etc., (and high-end homes) for well over 15 years now.

  9. Kit Gerhart Says:

    5 Most cars in the “great white north” rust out long before they wear out from miles. Even in areas without road sale, probably few regular cars see more than 250K mile, while it is not uncommon for taxis, and now Uber cars to see much more than that.

    Yes, the Uber cars, etc., will wear out more quickly than most private cars, but one “shared” car accruing 90K miles a year replaces 6 cars seeing 15K miles a year.

    I’m doing much more than my share in contributing to the number of cars on the road. I am one driver with 4 cars, driven a total of about 15K miles a year. Yeah, that is really silly, but I like “variety.”

  10. Sean McElroy Says:

    @G.A. – The actual award is the Truck/Utility of the Year. That’s how the Pilot and XC90 fit in. It’s a debate we hear often this time of year and one that I’m sure will rage on for some time.

  11. HtG Says:

    Off Topic: Apple

    There’s a story going around that Apple is going to make its own graphic processors rather than getting them from Imagination. This is interesting for us Autoliners because of the technology of GPU compute which can be used to lead to autonomous cars. In the article I link to we see that an engineer from NVidia is now at Apple, and we know from last year’s CES that NVidia is using Deep Neural Networks with GPU compute for an autonomous car solution. So I’m doing the speculative math.

  12. Kit Gerhart Says:

    “Light truck,” for the purpose of NOCTOTY, and for CAFE, means pickup, van, SUV, and CUV, with a GVWR of under 8500 pounds, or something like that.

    Being tall is part of the classification, and it some cases, being 4wd will make the same vehicle a “truck,” while the 2wd version is a car. I recently heard that is the case with a CR-V. Yes, it’s really silly. The ultimate in recent silliness with the truck vs car thing, was that the PT Cruiser was a “truck,” I guess because it is a little taller than the average car.

  13. John McElroy Says:

    #1. ZipCar and Turo say that each car that gets shared removes the need for 15 other cars. And that’s an average. In dense city centers, one shared car can replace up to 30 other cars. Think about it. Most private cars are parked for 22 hours a day. If instead they get used for 22 hours a day they can service a lot more people. And that means we just don’t need as many cars.

  14. Kit Gerhart Says:

    #13 That sounds like a really good thing for big metro areas. There will be a lot more parking places available for we occasional visitors, and the space taken by parking garages can be put to better use.

  15. HtG Says:

    13 In the county seat city of White Plains NY, Zipcar keeps a small fleet parked in the municipal parking lot attached to a large shopping center and residential tower complex. It’s easy to imagine residents treating the Zipcars as their personal collection; just take the elevator down and drive away. Otherwise, residents have most of what they want already, supermarket, multiplex, two gyms , Target+Walmart. It’s just a short walk to mass transit and another mall too. How many people can go carless with this arrangement?

  16. Druff Says:

    I can’t see that ride sharing saves miles at all. This vehicle has to come from somewhere other than your garage to get you, then go somewhere else for next job. Whenever there is only the driver in the car going from job to job that is actually extra miles driven than if someone owns there own car.

  17. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I’d think ride sharing in cities might save miles, because half of your driving involves looking for a place to park. In smaller towns, yeah, I’d think driving your own car would save moles.

  18. Rob Says:

    After reading the responses here I’d tend to believe that future vehicles will accumulate a lot more miles quicker and I would believe thats possible to get more miles because not having items deteriorate and break like plastic pieces that get brittle or gaskets the dry out. For example I could see a 3 year old car with 150k miles on it needing a set of shocks but a 6 year old car may also need them at only 100k miles because seals fell apart. So higher milage in a shorter time will be better for a lot of components. I also agree that the luxury brands will find it much harder to pull big money as people start to look at cars as just a mode of transportation and not a driving experience.

  19. stiophan Says:

    Ride Sharing will demand cars that are very mpg efficient and niche cars like supercars will see demand drop. Why need a AWD car for winter when you can either rent or share it out when the road conditions dictate. We might see more robust basic cars as low service costs will count for more than leather seats or in car entertainment. As we move into cities, something must give – better public transport, smaller cars, long distance ride sharing. Otherwise there will be gridlock