AD #2468 – Honda’s Wild SEMA Concept, GM Earnings Soar Despite Sales Drop, Faraday Future in Trouble

October 31st, 2018 at 11:37am

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Runtime: 7:28

0:29 GM Earnings Soar Despite Sales Drop
1:22 Faraday Future in Trouble
1:53 Faurecia Buys Clarion
3:13 Hyundai And Kia To Offer Solar Panels on Cars
3:50 New Manufacturing Process from Ford
5:03 FCA Reveals 1,000 Horsepower Crate Engine
6:36 Honda’s Rugged Open Air Vehicle

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27 Comments to “AD #2468 – Honda’s Wild SEMA Concept, GM Earnings Soar Despite Sales Drop, Faraday Future in Trouble”

  1. ChuckGrenci Says:

    Will the Hellephant engine be street legal. The demo didn’t have an exhaust (other than headers) and when goosed produced a very rich exhaust (black smoke). Can a cat system clean that up. Maybe it just needs to be track only.

  2. Dan Richmond Says:

    One of the best daily reports I have watched. Extremely entertaining as well as educational. Thank you!

  3. BobD Says:

    Chuck, I think with just a few exceptions, most “crate” engines are considered “off-road” in any state that has emission testing as part of the engine registration. I know GM has some “50-state” legal crate engines (or more correctly crate “systems”) that included exhaust treatment as part of the package, but most crate engines would be difficult to make legal.

  4. Phred Says:

    The sad story of Faraday Motors reminds me of the independent car companies that sprang up right after WW2 to respond to the consumer demand for a “new” car. The “demand” for EVs is playing out the same way. Lots of dreamers and “fast buck artist” but very few cars actually show up in a showroom.

  5. BobD Says:

    On Faraday Future, I assume a co-founder would own a significant amount of stock/equity in the company. So if a co-founder quits, what happens to his ownership? Or was it a matter of the company going bankrupt such that his equity is worthless, so the co-founder has nothing to lose by walking away?

  6. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Isn’t pretty much anything street legal, if you put it in a body older than 1968 or so?

    It was hard to tell from the video, but I assume the Hellephant engine is based on the “new hemi,” not the ’60s’ 426, or the ’51-’58 original hemis.

  7. Brett Cammack Says:

    I read something about “for vehicles built in or before 1976″ on another site regarding the big FCA crate motors.

    I’d still like to put a Mark 385 Ford 460 in a late-model Crown Victoria and graft in the IRS from an Explorer. Maybe in my next life…

  8. Dan Says:

    Someone screwed up the math. No way would a solar panel small enough to fit on a passenger vehicle, be powerful enough to generate any meaningful amount of power, let alone “30-60% of battery capacity”. Maybe after a couple WEEKS in the sun it might reach that mark, but no way in one day.

  9. Lambo2015 Says:

    GM guess the shift toward more trucks and SUVs is probably a good thing when it comes to their profit margin per vehicle.

    Any guesses on the Hellephant motor price? Checking their web site the current 707HP 6.2L hellcat crate motor is on sale for $15,994.
    So I’m guessing $19,999

  10. Larry D. Says:

    In today’s show:

    a. The 1000 HP engine. Maybe the 4-digit number impressed some, but you can already get a DIRT CHEAP, garden variety Dodge Challenger with 787 HP for five figures. 787 HP is barely 22% less than 1,000.

    b. Frivolous Faraday. It was a HUGE JOKE from the very beginning, I am not one bit surprised that the clueless and the crooks that ‘ran’ it bailed out.

    NOT in today’s show: (relax, Lambo, it’s NOT about TESLA. We’ll have plenty of opportunity tomorrow, when I will be eagerly waiting for the October sales, to see how much pain the Model 3 inflicted to BMW 3 Series and many, many other, and far lesser mortals, sales).

    I read that GM is offering buyouts to 20,000 (or is it 18,000? Who cares, some huge number) of its salaried employees. Monkey see, monkey do. Clueless Hackett at Ford was estimated to actually terminate, not buy out, 20,000 of Ford’s 70,000 Salaried employees, to placate the Wall Street Fund Managers. I hope GM does not spend like a drunken sailor on the buyouts. I was fully aware that, GM especially, had a ton of FAT in its organization, but did not expect it would try to get rid of so many. Ford, after all, is closing down the store, canceling ALL its cars, so it is expected to get rid of many of the people who were designing and making them.

    7 Finally, Dan, I fully agree with you, something seems RIDICULOUS in that claim by Hyundai-Kia about the solar panels on the roofs.

  11. JWH Says:

    Hellephant – Per article from R&T

    it’s for Pre-1976 vehicles. “The Hellephant is loosely based on a standard Hellcat engine, but a bigger bore and stroke bring displacement up from 6.2 to 7.0 liters. The Hellcat’s iron block is ditched in favor of the all-aluminum block used in the Dodge Challenger Drag Pak race car, helping save significant weight.”

  12. Lex Says:

    I am glad to hear that at least Hyundai and Kia are putting solar panels into their vehicles.

    As solar panel technology improves, incorporating them into the roof and/or trunk lid (not engine hood) might improve recharging times. As I have mentioned many times in the past, for most Americans their vehicle sits in an open-air employer provided parking lot exposed to the Sun for 8-10 hours per day. Why not have the vehicle take advantage of that solar exposure for those idle hours. As these solar panels gain additional acceptance by other OEM’s it will boost the solar industry to improve this technology at a faster pace in order to reduce cost and improve efficiency.

    It is too bad that Tesla in conjunction with Solar City has not incorporated solar panel technology into their vehicles. Congress can aid in the adoption of this technology by extending the $7500.00 rebate for EV’s with Solar panels. This Technology would probably be ideal for the southern and western regions of our country and reduce the inevitable strain of EV’s on the electrical power grid.

  13. ChuckGrenci Says:

    7 Dan, that is 30′ish percent for a hybrid battery; it could be possible (certainly not meaningful charge for a total electric though).

  14. Kit Gerhart Says:

    7, 9 The article said “hybrid cars.” With Hyundai, that means the Ioniq hybrid, which has a battery of about 1.55 kWh.

    Today’s solar panels put out about 15 watts per square foot in direct sunlight. If you put a 3×5 foot panel on the roof of an Ioniq, you’d get 225 watts of output, or 0.9 kWh in 4 hours of bright sunlight, less if cloudy, and early and late in the day. The Hyundai/Kia claims sound reasonable for a non-plug in hybrid, but yeah, it would take days, or weeks to get a meaningful amount of power for a plug-in car with a 60 kWh battery.

  15. Lawrence Says:

    Fast moving is the operative expression for FF’s fateful advances. Now the company and volatile Investor , Evergrande, are declaring a truce. So it’s apparently too early to bring out the bier.

  16. Jerrard Kyla Says:

    Wow looking great!

  17. Larry D. Says:

    7, 9, 13: I did see other articles about this, which underline this will never work for a full EV, and Hyundai does not claim it will work for a plug-in either, but I still have plenty of doubts:

    First of all, this assumes the whole car, not just the roof, has solar panels:

    “…Using a Ioniq Hybrid as an example, a max generation solar array operating under optimal conditions would top up the car’s 1.6 kWh battery to the tune of 50 percent in eight hours, though a smaller, roof-only system would mean less charge. A plug-in hybrid variant would likely need more than a week to fully charge its 8.9 kWh battery. As for the 28 kWh Ioniq Electric, well, you’d best bring that charging cord…”

    Second, there is the matter of COST/benefit ratio. is it really worth it, or is it just a marketing gimmick to shore up Hyindai-Kia’s really dismal sales?

    Third, many automakers were proposing apparently ingenious systems where your car sat in the hot sun all day, but the interior stayed cool because of a solar panel charging the A/C. I know the price of solar panels came down like a rock in recent years since then, but I need to see the actual math.

    Fourth, the Ioniq is directly competing with the Prius. The 20+ year old Prius team has 1,000s (Literally) of top-grade Engineers. Do you really think they have not investigated this and found it ineffective?

  18. Bob Wilson Says:

    Faraday factory in Hanford CA is 200 mi from Fremont CA and 330 mi from Reno NV. Perhaps Tesla might be interested?

    Hellephant, 1000 hp -> Allison V-1710, 1070 hp found in P38, P39, P40, P51-A. If the rotation can be reversed by re-porting oil pump and valve timing; replace super charger with turbo charger; high altitude ignition wiring, and; then build P-38 with carbon fiber spars, control surfaces, and key structural parts …. time to win the lottery.

  19. Kit Gerhart Says:

    14, 16. I found multiple sites saying that panels put out 15-20 watts/square foot, so I came up with 225 watt estimate for an Ioniq roof. TTAC came up with half that. Maybe my estimate of 15 square feet for the roof was high. In any case, for any kind of plug in car, the amount of power you could get from the roof would be insignificant. Also, the way hybrids work, you wouldn’t even have the “headroom” to put a lot of juice in the battery from solar cells. The battery isn’t normally dead when you shut off the car.

    I remember some Priuses, maybe around 2010, had solar cells running a small fan to circulate fresh air through the car when parked on hot days. It wasn’t cheap, but was fairly useless.

  20. Kit Gerhart Says:

    A solar panel is available on the Prius Prime plug-in, but only in Japan and Europe. It will, or might charge the battery if you park at the airport for 10 days.

  21. Roger t Says:

    The solar panel benefit is more than what you get in a day. The way to amortize it is to consider that you would save a little more each day you drive. And also those you don’t :)
    I think it’s a good idea, but it can look goofy if not well executed.

  22. Kit Gerhart Says:

    If the solar panel on a car roof costs $2000, and produces 1 kWh of power a day, 365 days a year, at the average electricity cost of about $.12 per kWh, the panel will pay for itself in 45 years.

  23. Larry D. Says:

    9 Follow-up, I read right, GM will offer buyouts to 18,000 employees. Details say they have been with the company 12 years or more, and if enough of them take the bait, GM will not have to fire anybody.

    (note: If you get your auto news from this show, you will always get them one day late. If you are OK with that, who am I to say anything. I like to watch the show despite that, for its discussions and points of view, as they change with time.)

    Back to the buyouts: They are One more piece of evidence showing how ineffective GM management is.

    FIRST, they do NOT target the incompetents they want to get rid of, they offer the buyouts to anybody with 12 years at GM! They will throw out the baby with the bathwater. My organization, back in the early 80s, was managed by two brilliant and competent deans, one of whom later became the president of the whole U, and his associate dean did much better, the late Charles M Vest, going to MIT as its president for 14 years, I believe, and after retirement he was chair of the National Academy of Engineering (the real deal, not the fake ones), before passing away at 72 of pancreatic cancer.

    Long intro to show GM how it SHOULD be done: These two TARGETED ONLY the Deadwood Faculty, and offered them attractive buyouts so they would retire early (better, EarlIER than they would, they still retired in their late 60s and 70s, we have no retirement age limit), and many took them, and the deans were able to hire the best and the brightest 25-28 year old fresh PHDs as tenure-track assistant profs in their place.

  24. Larry D. Says:

    20, 22 this proves beyond a doubt the folly of Hyundai’s marketing gimmick. Entertaining numbers.

    Top Gear today has a review of the Model 3.

    if you have no time to read the whole thing, here is their score (8/10) and their verdict:

    “…Everything Tesla has done up to this point has been building towards the Model 3 – a genuinely affordable mass-market EV – but it’s all for nothing if the product itself doesn’t stand up. So does it have the desirability to drag not just early adopters and tree-hugging environmentalists out of their petrol and diesel cars, but the wider public too? The answer is a surprisingly emphatic ‘yes’, and that’s because beyond the hype, this is a truly well-engineered car.

    The way it drives is genuinely satisfying, certainly more so than the Model S despite being several yards slower, which elevates it from being an appliance to something worth investigating for the likes of you and I. The way Tesla designs its cars, from the architecture to the user interface, the sales model to the marketing, is unique. ..”

  25. Larry D. Says:

    Auto sales are beginning to come in for October. I am sure you will all be Stunned (stunned, I say!) to hear that Ford, under the disastrous ‘leadership’ of clueless Hatchet, was down again, 3.9% (a little each month, but it adds up!) while FCA thanks to Jeep and Ram, up SIXTEEN Percent. that is for the WHOLE FCA, not just Jeep!

    Back to GM’s throwing the baby out with the bathwater. IF I was one of its 18,000 salaried employees who are offered the buyouts, and I was no big deal and did not have attractive offers elsewhere, I would sit on my posterior and do nothing. IF on the other hand I was a brilliant engineer or whatever who has some SELF RESPECT, I would IMMEDIATELY take the fools’ buyout package, AND accept an offer in a company that APPRECIATES TALENT and BRILLIANCE on the job.

    I have examples of former students who, after they got their PhDs, found easy jobs at huge GM Research Labs. Those who were worth a damn, soon QUIT these do-little jobs and became VERY successful in Academia and Industry. (one of them, a close friend too, left GM and in a few years was the Chair of Mech Engineering at Oakland U)

  26. BobD Says:

    Larry D – Not sure of the specifics of this current GM buyout, but in the past most of these GM buyouts that have been “offered” to everyone that meet the requirements (e.g., have at least 12 years of service) are done so at the desecration of management. That is, just because you request a buyout, does not mean you automatically get it. I was around for several of these prior buyouts and if GM considered you “valuable”, they would reject your request. And if GM considered you “deadwood” they pretty much made it clear that it was in your best interest to accept a buyout, otherwise after the buyout program was over, they would be showing you the door without any incentives they were previously offering. This approach seems much better than just tossing people out when they needed to meet some financial target set by the bean-counter.

    Also, GM is not necessarily reducing headcount as much as purging older, more expensive employees that may not have the proper skill sets anymore. By trimming current employees, this opens up opportunities and capital to hire new, younger, cheaper employees that have the new skills needed to go forward.

  27. Larry D. Says:

    26 Thanks for the info. I also was not given the specifics, and what you say makes more sense, but the sheer number is still ridiculous, 18,000! And it is not the employees that request a buyout, it is GM that will offer it to them, who have 12 years or more service (the total can’t be much higher than 18,000!) so it may still be offered to everybody in that group. What we don’t know is the size of the buyout, I hope GM does not spend like a drunken sailor.