AD #2478 – Aston Shows Off 1st SUV, BMW Ramps Up Use Of 3D Printed Parts, EPA Plans New NOx Rules for Big Trucks

November 14th, 2018 at 11:49am

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Runtime: 7:11

0:30 EPA Plans New NOx Rules for Big Trucks
1:21 CA Offers Counter Proposal to EPA
2:05 China’s Zotye Plans to Sell SUVs In U.S.
2:58 Aston Martin Shows Off Its First SUV
3:51 Chevy Offers Race Parts for Colorado ZR2
5:21 Ford and Walmart Test Autonomous Delivery
5:52 BMW Ramps Up Use Of 3D Printed Parts

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23 Comments to “AD #2478 – Aston Shows Off 1st SUV, BMW Ramps Up Use Of 3D Printed Parts, EPA Plans New NOx Rules for Big Trucks”

  1. Barry T Says:

    It’s good to see Chevy giving the ZR2 some added off-road/aftermarket support… even though I’m not very much a fan of the void-the-warranty part. I imagine Ford will be playing catch-up for the Ranger. With a massive size of the new full-size pick up trucks, it seems to me this part of the truck market will continue to grow, especially with Ford and Chevrolet finally giving it some real love compared to 10 years ago.

  2. Larry D. Says:

    Aston SUV: Aston claims it will be the best looking SUV in the market, but we cannot tell a whole lot from this thing. I’ll wait for the final product.

    Chinese SUV in the US: Now THIS is a TRUE Chinese SUV and NOT some Buick or Caddy which is just ASSEMBLED in China. And the exterior styling is good, and so so up front, and most important, it does not copy other SUV styling much.

    Last time I was in Shanghai for 3 weeks in May-June 2016, the dean of the institute I was visiting drove me in his Chinese SUV (not ZOTYE, I believe) on several occasions, including two working lunches, one of which he joked it was a “box lunch”, and indeed some of the courses came in boxes (but not the paper boxes we use here, rather intricate works of art). Anyway, his SUV was really close to the Lexus RX, although it did not blatantly copy the exterior grille etc details, and it was very nice inside, and when driving it, there was nothing objectionable from the engine, transmission etc. I don’t think I asked him how much he paid for it. In the U parking I would see all kinds of vehicles, even a Ford Fusion, but in the Ford Mondeo non-US version.

    Related to the CA EPA MPG story, I saw a Ward’s article in my email just an hour ago showing a huge improvement over the last few months, of the total US light vehicle fleet average MPG. Maybe we will see this here in tomorrow’s show, since there is a lot of cooperation between AD and Wards. And I bet the lion’s share of the credit belongs to none other than TESLA again, with the huge increase in their sales, and the Huge EPA MPGe their vehicles, esp the Model 3, have. This is a trend that should continue at least until all 500,000 reservations are delivered.

  3. Larry D. Says:

    2 PS and re the BMW using 3-d printers, this Xmas I will ask Santa for a 3D printer that can print out little 3D printers.

  4. Kit Gerhart Says:

    BMW is using the 3D printed parts in the i8, with global sales of, what, 2000? 3D printing is good for making small numbers of intricate parts, but not good for making large numbers of the same thing.

  5. Lambo2015 Says:

    Sean: Is Additive manufacturing the official term for 3D printing? Or is that a specific type of 3D printing?

    Aston Martin SUV thoughts; Well the SUV market in general leans toward very similar designs. This, like so many other SUVs looks about the same minus the grill and light configurations. The sail panel seems like it would hinder blind spot areas even more but with all the sensors available maybe its not as important. I personally do not like to depend on a sensor but use them as a secondary prevention not primary detection of obstructions.
    Personally I think automakers are going to have to look elsewhere to stand out in the crowd. The paint colors and interiors becomes more important as the body shape and design falter into obscurity.

  6. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I like the looks of the Chinese SUV better than the Aston Martin. It’s generic, but not objectionable, and it looks like it has better outward visibility than most of the other tall wagons out there.

  7. merv Says:

    Interesting that gm would offer parts for the ZR 2 but if you use them no warranty? Not sure i get that thinking?

  8. JWH Says:

    #8 – They’re happy to take your $ (which I’m sure are not unsubstantial) for the high performance parts, & then since they assume how you are now using the vehicle with high performance parts, deny any warranty claims. Best of both worlds on GM income & expenses until customers get a little bit upset.

  9. Albemarle Says:

    Interesting that today Johnson Controls announced they sold their battery business. Big leveraged buyout so Johnson must really want out.

    They are no longer an automotive supplier. That part of the business wasn’t growing but was profitable so worth it for others.

  10. ChuckGrenci Says:

    Not many manufacturers warranty their products if used for competition. I bet GM is selling these products for this type of use. If some use these pieces on street vehicles, I doubt that they will be easily prey to failure. As long as GM is upfront as to warranty, any who use, are/should be forewarned. Even vehicles not off-road, if they are abused (that can be substantiated by the maker) can be refused warranty.

  11. Eric Brunner Says:

    I bet the Aston rear window will get crapped up just like all blunt end hatches and SUV’s in bad weather conditions. I have yet to see anyone try to design the rear to use air flow to keep the window clear and/or reduce the rate of dirt/snow coverage.

    In the 80′s a company in England sold plastic winglets which I clamped vertically onto the sides of the rear hatch of our Mazda GLC and that worked very well. Too bad they are no longer around.

  12. Kit Gerhart Says:

    9 Johnson Controls may have timed their battery business exit very well. Car batteries, as we know them, may not be around too much longer, and I hear rumblings that batteries for regular ICE vehicles may go from lead-acid to lithium. Does JoCo do lithium batteries at all?

  13. Kit Gerhart Says:

    11. My ’86 Chevy Celebrity wagon had a wing thing above the rear window, which helped quite a bit with the slop thrown up from wet roads. I think those cars may have had a rear wiper option, but I didn’t have it.

  14. ChuckGrenci Says:

    There has been some concern with lithium starting batteries at least in the motorcycle forums concerning cold weather service. They may not be the best choice meaning that lead acid are not done yet.

  15. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Do lithium batteries lose ability to push high current when cold, more than lead acid? Is that the issue?

  16. ChuckGrenci Says:

    I believe that is the case. Some reported that a way to get the li battery to provide to capacity was to turn on a headlight or other drain that would cause the battery to warm internally and then it could provide to its capacity.

  17. ChuckGrenci Says:

    Lead acid while somewhat compromised is not to the same extent as we know they have been starting vehicles in sub zero weather since day one.

  18. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Unless lithium batteries are cheaper, or last longer, I don’t see the point, even if they work as well in cold weather. I see “weight savings” mentioned, but does it really buy you much to save 10 pounds of battery weight in a 5000 pound truck, or even a 3000 pound car? I guess we’ll know more over the next few years.

  19. DonWagner1239 Says:

    There are Li ion jump start battery units available. Very small. I have a Pb acid portable that is large and heavy.

    I had some side of hatch wing-like foils on a couple of ‘80s Omni and Horizon cars. May have been from J C Whitney. Also for VW Rabbit. Worked fine with or without wiper.

    My off-road story involved a Chrysler Employee leased Jeep Liberty with all of the extras (skid plates and tow/recovery hooks) for going on a Jeep Jamboree. A level 4 (10 was the Rubicon trail) trail in Pennsylvania resulted in many pounds of mud under hood and collected by the skid plates. Not the real problem. A couple of rocks did some rocker panel damage and “removed” trim on the right side. So? Chrysler leased me an off-road vehicle, but the insurance part of the Emplyee lease didn’t cover damage if I actually went off the road! Took $600 to fix all. I’ve had seven more Jeeps since and I don’t even like dirt roads. Snow and ice fine, but no mud and rock (boulders) recreation events.

  20. DonWagner1239 Says:

    And, I like Larry D. He seems mostly knowledgeable, and interesting, just could lighten up on the Tesla fanboy stuff. Not part of the Michigan landscape. Or maybe our potholes swallow them up.

  21. Kit Gerhart Says:

    The only real off-roading I’ve ever done was in a friend’s old FJ Land Cruiser, well before they became valuable as collectors’ items. We didn’t break anything, but were probably lucky.

  22. BobD Says:

    Kit – on battery weight, reducing 10 pounds is a huge savings and most OEMs would spend millions of dollars in engineering to engineer-out that kind of weight, and could justify a more expensive battery for that kind of weigh savings, even if they had to sacrifice a little on performance.

  23. w l simpson Says:

    Nissan’s 48 volt battery w/ICE gen is the way they all should go