AD #2671 – Daimler Testing Autonomous Trucks, Protestors Vandalize Cars in Frankfurt, Avalon & Camry Get TRD Trims

September 9th, 2019 at 11:44am

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Listen to “AD #2671 – Daimler Testing Autonomous Trucks, Protestors Vandalize Cars in Frankfurt, Toyota Avalon And Camry Get TRD Trims” on Spreaker.

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Runtime: 6:18

0:07 Protestors Vandalize Cars in Frankfurt
0:36 Bugatti Proposes 4-Seater Chiron
1:10 Third-Gen Mercedes GLC Plug-In Hybrid
2:10 Ferrari 812 And F8 Models Go Topless
2:55 Weekend Racing Results
3:18 Toyota Avalon And Camry Get TRD Trims
4:50 Daimler Testing Autonomous Trucks in Virginia
5:26 Volocopter To Bring VTOLs To China

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34 Comments to “AD #2671 – Daimler Testing Autonomous Trucks, Protestors Vandalize Cars in Frankfurt, Avalon & Camry Get TRD Trims”

  1. Kit Gerhart Says:

    The interesting thing to learn the GLC plug-in hybrid, will be the mpg when running on gas. Given that it will have an EPA range of only about 20 miles, its gas mileage will be the most important thing to many potential buyers.

  2. Wim van Acker Says:

    @Sean on Bugatti: “They cost almost $4 million apiece, meaning just 30 cars brought in more than $100 million in revenue. So no wonder Bugatti is looking at how it can extend the model line.”: do you know cost data on development cost, engineering cost, production cost, allocated overhead cost, etc? And do you know how important the Bugatti Halo effect is for the VW Group in trouble? If not, your statement is baseless.

  3. Lambo2015 Says:

    Anti car protestors? I wonder if after vandalizing the vehicles at the dealerships if they rode off on bicycles or ran away? Just when I thought stupid protests were exclusive to the US. Hopefully they will be caught.

    Bugatti; I would be pretty reluctant to climb into a car with anyone that could drive at 300mph without any more requirements than having 4 Million bucks. So hey make a 4 door so you can take 3 fools with you.

  4. Larry D. Says:

    1 I really believe that nobody cares about MPG exept in these discussions here, either in the US where gas is Dirt-Cheap (it really is, and if you disagree, you have not lived in Europe), but even in Europe of $6-7 gas.

    Unless you are a taxi driver or a salesman who needs to drive 100,000 miles a year, most other people going on long trips, either alone or with a friend or their entire family, gas is the LEAST of their costs, by a mile.

    Very true in the US, but also true in Europe, where the excellent roads in many nations have HUGE tolls, where the hotels, eating, insurance and repair/maintenance expenses are far more significant, and gas, even at $8 a gallon in Europe, is much less of a pain by comparison.

    And remember, even in Europe, if you take your family, even a tiny family of 3, on a road trip, the 45 MPG of your Civic or other typical car there, is really 135 MPG (!!!!) per person!

  5. Larry D. Says:

    3 Last summer, one of my 3 colleagues in that certification committee lives in Germany, and told me that despite the rise of the far right party in the former East German “Laender” or States, the first party in Germany has already become or is soon to become the GREENS, bigger than either old establishment parties, the center-right CDU-CSU and the social-democrats SPD.

  6. Larry D. Says:

    2 I was going to tell Sean that just because they sold them at $4 mill each, does not mean that they made ONE DIME of profit, and most likely, as with the much larger volume Veyron, they lost $3 mill or much more PER vehicle they sold.

  7. Larry D. Says:

    This is the ‘statement’ the hooligans who vandalized luxury cars only ( I assume for them, gas-guzzling cheap cars are OK) put out: One is born every minute…From the link given here.

    “Rocks in the Gearbox” released a statement on Monday saying: “In two weeks Frankfurt will once again launch a propaganda show where the outmoded, climate and environment destroying transportation system is hyped.”

    “We want to expose this show for what it really is: profits made on the backs of the poorest and at the expense of future generations … We think it is time to throw rocks into the gearbox of capitalist and automotive profit logic.”

  8. Kit Gerhart Says:

    4 I certainly agree that gas is a small portion of most peoples’ driving expenses, mine more than most, because I buy too many new cars, but efficient cars, and don’t drive a huge number of miles.

    That said, what reason would there be to buy that GLC plug-in hybrid, except gas mileage, for the many people who wouldn’t have a place to charge it at home? It’s probably a little quicker than the regular version, but that isn’t what people buy “premium” compact crossovers for. If it drives really well, and doesn’t cost much more than the regular version, there’d be reasons. It does sound like a serious effort, using electric a/c, using the traction motor to start the ICE, pre-heating/cooling, etc. It sounds kind of complicated, though, with all of the clutches connecting and disconnecting the motor various ways.

  9. Larry D. Says:

    I see no reason to buy any plug-in if you cannot charge it at home overnight, as I can.

    I would not even buy a fast charger, I’d buy one if I can charge it fully on my regular outlet.

    Having said that, and given the short range of the Merc plug-in, it probably would not make sense for most commuters, even if their employer lets them charge at work (usually for free)

    It also depends on the price difference.

    Mercedes used to sell the diesel E only $1k more than the gas E 320 or 350, and one would recover the extra $1k in just a couple years (average miles/yr)

    TOyota has a similar policy these days, and it is intentional, to price the hybrid versions just a little higher than the gas versions, for many of its cars and probably SUVs. (Writing this from memory).

  10. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I hope they caught, or will soon catch those vandals, and lock them up for life, or at least long enough to teach them a lesson.

  11. Lambo2015 Says:

    5&7 Rocks in the gearbox should be rocks in the head. If they really think that the auto industry is profits made on the backs of the poorest and at the expense of future generations then they have no idea how it has transformed 3rd world countries. Some of the poorest parts of the world have been brought into a thriving economy because of the auto industry. Yes they are typically employed at first due to their super low labor rates. But eventually the wages increase and its a good thing for their whole country. As for the environmental impact I suppose destroying cars that were not yet sold and will now require more resources to replace them seems to have exactly the opposite outcome they are looking for.

  12. ArtG Says:

    Are they going to offer an option for a different grille on the Avalon? That thing is hideous.

  13. Albemarle Says:

    1. That’s exactly my thought as that segment ran. How’s the car on gas.
    It is more inconvenient to have to handle both electricity and gas so I think a PHEV needs a longer plug-in range and great fuel mileage in order to attract buyers.


    Protestors LOL. If you don’t like automobiles, don’t buy one. Don’t buy goods and services which require the use of transportation either. Don’t use UBERs, taxis, busses, trains….nothing. Stop participating in the very activities that require the use of the things that you are protesting about. It is as simple as that.

    If you truly care about being environmentally and socially conscience, get rid of all the modern things in life (like the mobile phone they all surely have) and become Amish. I will see them all at the next horse show LOL.

  15. Bob Wilson Says:

    I want to see the Chiron child seat.


    15) Not sure what Bugatti will do for kids seats, but I got this for my niece. It is great! My niece really loves it and she typically hates car seats. It isn’t cheap though. Maybe Bugatti will take this and cover it in leather LOL.

  17. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Probably most of the buyers of the $4M Bugattis don’t know how to drive.

  18. MJB Says:

    Nice 3D renders of those Ferraris. Each of those cars looks even better in their ‘chop-top’ form than the original IMHO.

  19. Lambo2015 Says:

    18 I thought the same thing I really liked the topless versions. Ferrari did a great job of taking an existing hardtop and removing it without it looking like an afterthought. Those designs looked like they were in the original plan all along.

  20. Lambo2015 Says:

    17 Lets face it, 80% of licensed US drivers don’t know how to drive. But even those that can and maybe even spent some time on the track should be reasonably nervous over 200mph let alone 300.

  21. Lambo2015 Says:

    14 Maybe your onto something and the protesters were part of the Amish mafia. :-)

  22. Kit Gerhart Says:

    20 Even on most tracks that have “track days” for clubs, etc., you would never approach 200, even with a really fast car. Bragging rights are worth quite a bit to a few people who have a lot of spare money.

  23. Larry D. Says:

    I bet you will hear about this in the next show


    23) Well, my F150 lease is coming up soon. Ford cancelled the lease loyalty program for Ford branded vehicles and they want me to pay $100 more per month for the same vehicle I drive now. So…Now I am going to get something else from another manufacturer at a cheaper lease rate. Talking to the Ford salesperson, I am not alone.

  25. Kit Gerhart Says:

    24 You might be able to get a good deal buying the one you have at the end of the lease. If you like the vehicle, maybe you should check that out.

  26. Lambo2015 Says:

    23 The bad part about the cuts that Ford and GM are making, is they are necessary to the changing market. Sedans are not selling and so it makes sense to cut them loose. Yet people will complain about that right up until the companies are going bankrupt and then wonder why. People complain when they make sound financial decisions that reduce work force and complain when they don’t make money.
    However Ford does seem to be lost when it comes to a direction and just seem to reacting to market changes and not preparing for the future. Its like the same old thought of lets make trucks and SUVs where the big margins are. Neglecting any future consumers that need a reasonably priced entry level car. They also seem to be doing very little with EV and AV technology other than pretty good hybrid models of cars they are canceling.
    I’ve said before that spending a ton of cash on AV technology might be a huge waste of money as it might turn out to be a big huge bust for many manufacturers that are throwing cash at this right now.

    We are decades away from a fully autonomous car that can operate 100% of the time without driver input. So for the meantime we will see variants of autonomy that will likely be purchased component technology. Let suppliers eat that R&D cost. Ford might be smart to hold off on this right now but it does make them appear to be doing nothing

  27. Larry D. Says:

    I don’t object to cutting most of the sedans, the Fiesta despite its huge ad budget when introduced, never did well, as no other car in its subcompact segment ever did well by any other maker.

    But the markets object to Ford and GM throwing billions at this pie in the sky AV crap that most consumers are still strongly against. Hence the downgrade. They did not downgrade Ford to Junk because it cut unprofitable sedans (as well as decent selling ones like the FUsion)

  28. Lambo2015 Says:

    27 Yeah the Fusion cut made no sense to me at all. It was still selling well and had a hybrid version and decent powertrain options. None of the US automakers know how to build a decent compact and the Fiesta was proof of that. GM had a great little car with the Cruze and then they tried to copy more of a Civic styling with the refresh. Fail! They just cant seem to wrap their hands around how to build a decent small car. And worse yet they build one like the Bolt that would probably get 38MPG with an ICE and make it electric. So you save what? $1000 in gas just to spend $500 a year in electricity for a net savings of $500 a year. Meaning you’ll get your gas saving back in about 30 years.

  29. Kit Gerhart Says:

    27,28 The Fiesta is the top selling car in the UK. What a difference east and west of the Atlantic ocean makes.

    The Fusion needed an update but was still a decent car. Also, the hybrid powertrain needed some work. When new, the first Fusion hybrid was only a little behind the Camry hybrid in mpg, but the gap has widened a lot. Yeah, the difference in actual fuel cost is not much, but the mpg numbers matter, to fuel economy geeks.

  30. Larry D. Says:

    29 Even in the UK there is no guarantee the Fiesta made Ford a DIME, and I suspect it lost it billions, given the fact that GM’s European adventure, OPEL, lost $20 billion before Mary Barra did the right thing and got RID of it.

    I have driven the Fusion Hybrid and it was not acceptable, it got 30 MPG when any Toyota hybrid in the same situation would get 45, and in addition the trunk was butchered to handle the hybrid plant/battery and became practically unusable.

  31. Kit Gerhart Says:

    The GM decision I don’t understand at all, is keeping the Sonic, but dropping the much better selling Cruze.

    To me, Ford’s dropping all of their cars except Mustang, and Chevy dropping most of theirs, is very short sighted, especially in the case of the decent selling Fusion and Cruze.

    27 The only good Fiesta was the very “niche market” ST. I drove one, and it drove great, putting my non-S Mini to shame, especially the powertrain. The mass market Fiesta not only didn’t fit well in the US market, but, except the ST, was very underwhelming, with its crappy DCT, and so-so engines in the mainstream versions.

  32. Kit Gerhart Says:

    30 The trunk of the earlier Camry hybrid lost trunk space, but maybe not as much as the Fusion hybrid. The 2018 and later Camry hybrid, and the current Accord hybrid have the big battery under the rear seat cushion, so no space is lost.

  33. Larry D. Says:

    32 I forgot to add the Honda Hybrids, they also have far better MPG than the Fusion, there was a big scandal back then when Ford advertised the Fusion and the C max or some other hubrid as EPA 47-47-47 and Larry Velaquette, a journalist in Autonews, bought one and could not get more than 30 MPG from the thing and kept writing editorials about it. Apparently Ford used a loophole that allowed it to give the above lofty MPG to other cars without having to test them, because they had the same plant as the FUsion, but there was more than that.

  34. wmb Says:

    Bugatti, as a brand, has the bottled up potential to do so much more on the product side. Much like Lamborghini has the Aventador as the brand’s halo, the Huracan and now the Urus are what the customers come in and buy. Bugatti could follow suite with a second or third model line. With them building only 300 to 400 hundred of the Chiron and its specialty versions, whether the second or third model line is a sedan or full size crossover, keeping the totality of their product portfolio between 800 to 1000 vehicles er year should still keep keep them rare, collectable and expensive. The only fly in the ointment is that the VW Group likes to share platforms, and they do not have an architecture to support/handle even a detuned version of the Veyron/Chiron’s W16. Bugatti has a lot of pent-up demand for more then just the one hit wonder of their halo Chiron! Whether they capitalize on it is the question.