AD #2385 – Waymo Wants Partner for Europe, Musk Has Words for Doubters, Volvo & FedEx Test Autonomous Platooning

June 28th, 2018 at 11:41am

Runtime: 6:17

0:29 Musk Has Strong Words for Doubters
1:21 Waymo Wants “Large Number” of Cars for Europe
2:20 Volvo & FedEx Test Autonomous Platooning
2:53 FCA Reveals Mobility Services Strategy
4:33 Ford Early on CO2 Targets
5:11 June Gets Boost from Extra Selling Days

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27 Comments to “AD #2385 – Waymo Wants Partner for Europe, Musk Has Words for Doubters, Volvo & FedEx Test Autonomous Platooning”

  1. Chuck Grenci Says:

    So, maybe GM had it right when they went to quarterly reporting. When one day (or one less) skews the figures enough that news reporting has fodder for evaluation (that really doesn’t make much difference), the quelling effect of quarterly sales seems more reasonable and accurate.

  2. XA351GT Says:

    A 35K model 3 will be like trying to find a Pontiac Solstice for under 20K when they were new. Lutz crowed about the low price, but I never ever saw one even close to 20K on a dealer’s lot. Most were well appointed and had price tags to match. So unless you special ordered a strip down model there was not much chance of seeing one for under 22K These will be the same I have a feeling. Unless companies go back to the days of allowing individual options to be ordered and not packages cars at the or near the base price will be like finding a unicorn .

  3. bradley cross Says:

    Perhaps Tesla had it right when it had quarterly reporting years ago.

  4. Kit Gerhart Says:

    #2. You could order a zero option Solstice and get it in 6-8 weeks. A friend did that. Dealers didn’t stock them that way, though.

  5. Lex Says:

    If Waymo is using Chrysler Minivans in North America, wouldn’t it be looking for Fiat Panda’s or larger vehicle for Europe?

  6. Albemarle Says:

    Interesting to think about all these autonomous vehicles coming on the used car market. After they take off all the sensors, a car will look like a used cop car with all the wiring holes. At least the steering wheel and pedals will have been lightly used.
    With Waymo already using the Jaguar I-PACE, it seems logical, since it’s made in Europe, for them to use it there too.

  7. lisk Says:

    I’m still not in favor of large trucks and their platooning. We need trucks to deliver everyday goods, but on the highways, they can be very annoying and running in long lines, this can make it worse. My big question is what happens when the lead gets separated from the driverless trucks by cars merging in between the platoon? That IS going to happen. How unsafe is that going to be? Or will the lead truck disrupt traffic to get hooked back up with the platoon vehicle?
    I think the concept is a good idea, but until all cars are AV, not a good idea.
    And Elon is looking to have the last word, again. I’m not sure how he’s going to justify the 5,000+ car a week claim when all tracking has him around 3,000. (And congrats to him for 3,000; I didn’t think we’d see that this soon.) Is he going to claim this by doing his normal burst builds where he’ll where he’ll cars for a couple of hours and amortize the results to come out to 5,000 cars a week? IMO, His tent operation to me is going to be a warranty/lemon law nightmare. How are the cars being assembled in a non-clean room setting? There has to be a ton of dust getting in these cars during assembly, and dust and electrics don’t normally complement one another.

  8. Lambo2015 Says:

    To answer the question on the $35k model 3. No. its as possible as that “zero down $99 a month new car ad you see on tv.

    Waymo is known in America? If it wasn’t for this show I’m not sure I would ever have heard of them.

  9. Buzzerd Says:

    @7 I agree about the trucks, it seems like they are trying to re invent the train when we could just use a train.

  10. Ed Says:

    Elon Musk keeps changing what he says. If you go on his original statements. Now if you see a decontented model. And they reach “goal” many months after the original promise. … do they even hear themselves. In a court of law “ the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.” It’s important to remember that omission is the same as lying when done intentionally.

  11. Chuck Grenci Says:

    “Musk Has Strong Words for Doubters” Let’s do a reality check and see who has the better track record; I’m afraid that the doubters are so far ahead (in reality) that Musk’s strong words have no basis (in fact). And when or if they do, they will certainly not be timely (unless you are on Musk-time).

  12. Kit Gerhart Says:

    9 Trains are, by far, the most efficient way to carry heavy cargo long distances. It too bad the U.S. has so little infrastructure.

  13. Kit Gerhart Says:

    If Model 3 production has reached 3000/week, they are doing a lot better than I would have expected a few months ago. Time will tell about the quality.

  14. lisk Says:

    13) Kit, if you haven’t seen this, this is the Bloomberg Model 3 Estimator. It’s been up since early August I believe. Production jumps up 500 units average today.
    https://www.bloomberg.com/graphics/2018-tesla-tracker/

    The big tell will be if Tesla is building additional Model 3s at the expense of S & X production just to reach for model 3 goals.

  15. Fred Schmidt Says:

    If this concept of truck platooning is to become a reality and to avoid traffic produced problems, restricting these trucks to operating in off hours might make sense. As an example the hours between 10pm and 5am when most highways are lightly used would avoid so many traffic issues. On highways where there are traffic lights or stop signs how will they handle those challenges. There are many dual lane highways that have traffic signals. I also see needing more areas or depots where the platoon separates and picks up the driver to pilot the driverless trucks in the platoon to travel to their destinations. How will effect independent owner/operator trucks? Will they become a much smaller group? How will the Teamsters union view this possible reduction of drivers? There is a lot to this concept to unfold.

  16. Fred Schmidt Says:

    12 Trains are vastly more efficient. Here in the northeast there are many local rail lines to small towns but they are rarely used. I live in a town next to a very large industrial park where manufacturing,production and distribution is done. It has rail service with several spurs but it is also has I295, the NJ Turnpike and I95 all within 5 miles. The rails are lightly used. I guess its logistics and time issues that make trucks the better choice.

  17. Kit Gerhart Says:

    14 Thanks. I saw that a while back, but not recently. I’ll bookmark it.

    16 The place I’ve seen a lot of trains, long ones at frequent intervals, was near I-80 in southern Wyoming. I was at a model airplane field, probably about 1/2 mile from the railroad. I don’t know what the cargo was, but there would be a lot of stuff going east from west coast ports.

  18. Fred Schmidt Says:

    17 East West is the domain for rail..my son and his family live in Hastings Nebraska and the rail traffic is high as it has many running through Hastings including those used by Union Pacific, Burlington Northern, and Amtrak rail lines. You have to like train horn noise to live there.

  19. Kevin Says:

    Sean, Please tell us what we REALLY want to know. If tariffs succeeded completely and ALL US sold cars were made in the US, what cars would we be missing? Is there any type of vehicle that would be completely gone? (ie commuter cars, most sports cars) Would some domestic or foreign makes be reduced to almost nothing> (ie Mazda)

  20. Kevin Says:

    Sean,
    Also, what models will still be available in Canada and Mexico? Is it just commuter cars and pickup trucks there?

  21. Kit Gerhart Says:

    19 We’d be missing two of my cars, Mini and Prius. I wouldn’t be sure there’d be enough volume to build plants here for either one.

  22. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Something that would expand the number of car models in Canada, would be standardization of safety and emissions rules with the EU. If the rules were the same, there’d be no reason not to sell Peugeots, Skodas, Renaults, and other cars in Canada, or the U.S., except for trade wars.

  23. Terry Quinn Says:

    Regarding Volvo & FedEx’s Platooning project: It is no big deal. Before I retired in 2009 as an Engineering manager in the worlds largest construction equipment company (you can guess) the army was trying to find a way to make it safer to operate convoys in Iraq, given the problems of roadside bombs. Many drivers of trucks were getting injured and killed, along with the loss of equipment and supplies. The concept was called “leader-follower,” and involved having a heavily armored lead vehicle followed by a string of autonomous trucks trailing behind the leader. The project was first attempted by an aerospace firm (I won’t mention its name), and they could not get their concept to work. When we heard about this, we realized that the work we had already done on autonomous mining vehicles assured us that we could provide a solution to the military with high confidence. We approved a budget to put together a proposal at our cost, trying to do our part to support the war effort. Unfortunately, the aerospace company had done such a poor job with their attempt at the project, that the army officers in the war zone became convinced that it simply could not be done. We never could get a sit-down with the military to show what we could do. It was frustrating, because we were sure we could pull it off with our existing technology.

  24. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Infiniti’s new variable compression ratio engine is apparently a joke. CR just tested it, and it got 2 mpg worse overall mileage, and 7 mpg worse highway mileage than a BMW X3 with its plain vanilla 2.0 turbo. The Infiniti was slightly quicker, but not significantly so. The Audi Q5 also gets better mpg, and is quicker than the Infiniti. It looks like we have another case of complexity for complexity’s sake.

  25. Kit Gerhart Says:

    24 continued…

    The Infiniti tested, the QX50, the X3, and the Q5 are all within 80 pounds of the same weight.

  26. David Sprowl Says:

    In a nut shell… Falcon Heavy missed it’s orbit target, crashed a returnable booster into the ocean, but a far less price than the government so that makes it a blazing success? Too many fires are associated with Tesla. And after months of promises of 5000/ week target still not happening from a company that to date is not profitable. And this man still makes headlines? why?

  27. veh Says:

    If there’s so much demand for the Model 3, why cut prices?