AD #2754 – Lexus Creates Wild Lunar Vehicle Concepts; Commercial Van Sales Up In 2019; FCA Confirms Foxconn Talks

January 20th, 2020 at 11:47am

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Listen to “AD #2754 – Lexus Creates Wild Lunar Vehicle Concepts, Commercial Van Sales Up In 2019, FCA Confirms Foxconn Talks” on Spreaker.

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Runtime: 7:31

0:07 FCA Confirms Foxconn Talks
0:39 Canadian Billionaire Seeks Aston Stake
1:22 Palladium Soars to Record Highs
2:20 Commercial Van Sales Up In 2019
3:12 Lune Wave Develops Improved Radar
4:08 Toyota Realigns Production
4:59 Lexus Creates Lunar Mobility Concepts
5:50 Subaru To Go All Electric by Mid-2030’s
6:31 Production Lucid Air to Debut In New York

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49 Comments to “AD #2754 – Lexus Creates Wild Lunar Vehicle Concepts; Commercial Van Sales Up In 2019; FCA Confirms Foxconn Talks”

  1. Larry D. Says:

    Many automakers are trying to fool their audiences by claiming they will go “all electric’ by some year. As in the case of Subaru here today, they DO NOT mean all their vehicles will be pure BEVs, but most likely most of them will be dirty plug-in hybrids. Which is not a bad thing, BUT I hate when people think all these vehicles are BEVs.

  2. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I don’t quite understand the FCA/Foxconn agreement. Does making iPhones really have much to do with making cars?

  3. Sean McElroy Says:

    @Larry – Yes, many automakers do like to use the word ‘electrified’ when talking about their lineup, which can be confusing. But it seems like Subaru actually does mean all-electric. Many sources are reporting they will go full electric by the middle of the 2030′s.

  4. Lambo2015 Says:

    1 Agreed! Electrifying your fleet means anything from a mild hybrid to pure BEV. So to say they will only sell electric vehicles is just another way to say they will have at least some type of electrification. Sure made it sound like they wont be making any ICE engines though. I guess keep it vague so in ten years they can say they can back-peddle.

  5. Larry D. Says:

    3 Thanks, Sean, if Subaru will have a 100% BEV fleet, it is surpising, because Subaru teamed up with Toyota which currently has zero BEVs for sale in the US, while it h as a ton of hybrids and plug-in hybrids.

  6. Lambo2015 Says:

    “Palladium Soars to Record Highs”.
    So we can expect thieves to go back to stealing converters off cars again?

  7. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Boxer engines, along with mandatory 4WD are part of the Subaru “brand,” but I wonder if they will use the boxer engines with the Toyota hybrid system. It would take some much different packaging to adapt the hybrid system to the longitudinal crankshaft Subaru engines.

  8. Albemarle Says:

    You can’t tell where Toyota is going. They have spent a lot of time here in Canada explaining that plug-in and regular hybrids are all that’s needed to meet the greenhouse gas targets. Then they partner with others and are working on electric helicopter drones! More flavour of the month than corporate focus, I think.

  9. Albemarle Says:

    7 Personally, I have never really bought into the boxer engine idea that Subaru have. More expensive to make, a little less balanced, and harder to get fuel economy out of. We have had and still have Subarus and it’s their AWD that we love. The cheap and cheerful interior we live with.

  10. Lambo2015 Says:

    3 Sean, All the automakers will say that until 2035 and they realize their is still a market for ICE’s. For the time being, it does make them sound like they are doing right by the environment. Its a good PR marketing stunt.
    Didn’t automakers say we would all be in flying cars by 2000 back in the 50s?

  11. cwolf Says:

    Lucid Motors is just one of many upcoming manufactures which will be the beginning of Tesla loosing some of its mojo. And as several have reported, they claim to focus on being more of a true car company than a tech company like Tesla. They labeled Tesla a tech company, not me!
    Lucid and others say they will place more attention on paint , body and interior quality that the present leader.

  12. Kit Gerhart Says:

    9 In practice, Subaru’s boxer engines get competitive fuel economy, but the main reason to use them seems to be brand identity. My sister has a Forester, but she bought it because of the appearance, decent interior, and because it was a good value. She probably doesn’t even know what configuration the engine is, and may not even know how many cylinders it has. She lives in Indiana, so the AWD makes it easier to drive in the ice and snow.

    Boxer engines make sense for Porsche 911, and Cayman/Boxter for packaging purposes.

  13. Lambo2015 Says:

    11 When your king of the hill you have a huge target on your back. Its a good thing for everyone else to be playing catch-up (for Tesla) but it does put them in a spot to defend their position. The next few years is going to much harder for Tesla as a lot more participants are going to jump in the game with serious contenders. Now that most have realized that BEV cant just be some tiny econobox that runs on batteries, but needs to offer things a 45K car should have and performance to match a Tesla.

  14. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I’m surprised that the ancient, 20+ year old Chevy vans still sell as well as they do. When you add in the ~24K sales of the GMC version, the GM vans sell about 2/3 the numbers of the much newer Ford.

  15. Larry D. Says:

    14 20 year old means they were a 2000 model. Not that ancient in a segment where not much has happened the last 50 years. We have lots of them here, U vehicles for maintenance and operations etc, from the outside they look huge in terms of interior space.

  16. Kit Gerhart Says:

    15 Actually, they’re 25 years old; they’ve been around since 1995 in about the same form. They are crude, and thirsty, but have lots of space if you need it. Also, they should be easy to maintain with the basic Chevy V8s and V6s. They have sold them with diesels over the years, but I don’t know if they do now.

  17. Larry D. Says:

    I tried to find when the new Roadster will go on sale, and it will be 2020, but not before the Model Y becomes available.

    In my search I unearthed this year-old short Jay Leno’s garage video which, in the last two mins, drag races the new Roadster. (it also has a drive of the Model 3 before that, but that’s old news now)

    That thing has a 200 KWH battery which (alone) will weigh about 1,800 lbs and will be a ‘one second car’ (0-60 in seconds) and quartermile at… 8 seconds and change.

  18. Larry D. Says:

    17 here it is. Enjoy

  19. Larry D. Says:

    16 Our department used to own a Ford passenger van that could take 12 or 15 people, I drove it once and it seemed to have 100 degrees of freedom, shook and rattled, and the driver’s seat was so high up, I would look down at Escalade and F 150 drivers, who always gave me the right of way, even when I did not have it. Very crude vehicle.

  20. Kit Gerhart Says:

    19 Yeah, the old Ford van was really crude. I drove one a few years ago, a rental in Denver, and it did pretty well in snow, at least when full of passengers. I suspect the new Ford Transit is a lot less noisy and rattly.

  21. Larry D. Says:

    Had not checked top gear for a while, and today i found this 3 series plug-in hybrid with a good 35 mile range. My commute to downtown from the summer home is 38.5 km one way, but if I park the car at the nearest metro station and then take the subway (and avoid more expensive gas and parking) it is only 26.7 km one-way, or less than 17 miles, and given I will use it in the summer, I should be able to get the whole 33 miles on pure electric. The price in the UK (with VAT I assume) is 40k pounds, which is not much more than $45k US.

  22. Kit Gerhart Says:

    17,18 I think the quickest 0 to (almost) 60 acceleration I’ve experienced would be Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster at Disney Florida, which accelerates from 0 to 57 mph in 2.8 seconds. Even for that acceleration, it would have been good to have gotten the advice Jay got, about putting your head against the head rest. I didn’t know that the first time I rode the ride, but knew to put my head back on subsequent rides.

  23. XA351GT Says:

    I hope I live long enough to see the auto industry completely collapse under this EV folly. They are making cars that can’t turn a profit on for customers by the majority that don’t want them . When they collapse under the weight of this EV albatross I hope tax payer money isn’t used to save them. There is a place for both ICE and EVs in the world. Let the market decide what they want.

  24. Larry D. Says:

    22 I did not realize these things have such accelerations. I should try them sometime. (preferably not at Disney locations but maybe at nearby Sandusky OH, if that place has not gone broke, I remember it from decades ago)

    In the Shanghai Science Museum, I was able to ride on a zero-gravity simulator, they had an age limit of 55 or 60 and I was 53 at the time, it was not very memorable, and I was able to walk straight after I descended from it.

  25. bradley cross Says:

    Why is Lucid building a new factory?
    Q. Is there not an existing one they can grab cheap without union labor?
    They likely wont be as lucky as Tesla but still it would save time presumably.

  26. Larry D. Says:


    1. The market will never make the correct decision if polluters do not pay, as is the case now. The price of an ICE vehicle should be far, far higher than it is today if it, as it should, pays for all the damage it will do to the environment in its lifetime.

    2. Despite this (in some states UNbelievably hostile) environment for BEVs, and despite the incompetence and the billions wasted by the “big 3″ and their peers in Europe, there IS one company which has PROVEN that BEVS can and have been produced at a profit, and you ain’t seen nothing yet!!!

    Don’t you ever LISTEN to this program, esp the AAH with Munro?

  27. Rickw Says:

    In this show you mentioned that Palladium is selling for $2500.00 per once.
    You failed to mention how much of this is used in the average Catalytic Converter.????

    How much $$ will a CAT cost compared to last year.?

    Inquiring minds need to know.


  28. Rickw Says:

    27, I meant to say Ounce.

  29. Kit Gerhart Says:

    24 Most roller coasters don’t have quick acceleration from a standing start, but this one starts from level, and accelerates very quickly, using linear induction motors, and then goes into its loops, rolls, and turns, with graphics and Aerosmith music.

    I found that there’s one at Cedar Point in Sandusky, that does 0-120 mph in 4 seconds. I doubt if any Tesla cars do that, or maybe any street legal cars, even the $2M variety.

  30. Wim van Acker Says:

    @23:”I hope I live long enough to see the auto industry completely collapse under this EV folly.” I, just like I assume most of us on this forum, work in the automotive industry. A complete collapse of the automotive industry is the last thing I would like to see. I also do not want to see any other industry collapse, just for the records.

    I am in favor of success and prosperity.

  31. ChuckGrenci Says:

    @Kit, Rock’in Rollercoaster is a pretty good comparison for push in your seat acceleration. Linear induction motors are being used in our newest aircraft carriers (for launching aircraft) and are also being considered to help spacecraft into orbit by reducing the amount of fuel needed to break gravity’s effect on massive spacecraft. Linear induction is also used at Disney’s Tomorrowland People Mover (at a much more sedate rate).

  32. Kit Gerhart Says:

    According to this article:

    Cars, light-duty trucks, and motorcycles average total is 2-6 grams of platinum+rhodium+palladium
    Larger-engine SUV’s and trucks average total can range anywhere from 6-30 grams.

    That’s not a lot of those metals, but at $2500/ounce, even a few grams isn’t cheap.

  33. Kit Gerhart Says:

    31 Yeah, the people mover is much more sedate, at about 5-6 mph top speed. I think it’s been there since they opened in Florida. I remember them touting the futuristic linear induction motors when I first went to Disney in the late ’70s.

  34. Lambo2015 Says:

    26 The price of an ICE vehicle should be far, far higher than it is today to pay for all the damage it will do to the environment in its lifetime.
    So we should raise the price of ICE cars to make them less attractive than BEV’s? Sounds a bit socialistic.
    Since we know that many people get their electricity from coal plants do you really know how much better those BEVs are for the environment? How about the piles of used up batteries in the coming years or the strip mining that is used to obtain the metals used in the batteries?
    Or maybe we build a few more Nuclear plants to rid us of them dirty coal plants and then figure out where to store that nuclear waste that takes 1000s of years to break down.
    Seems that EVs could be real attractive now like smoking was in the 1920s and then you find out years later.. ahe maybe not so much.

  35. Kit Gerhart Says:

    34 There’s a good place in Nevada for nuclear waste, but years of political wrangling from all directions have prevented its being used.

  36. Lambo2015 Says:

    35 Is there really any good place? We also thought it was okay to just dump waste into the ocean too. Vast open area doesn’t always mean its a good place.

  37. cwolf Says:

    Kit, isn’t there a very large aquifer deep underground in Nevada and several states north that is being depleted by housing and farmers? I don’t think I would want nuclear waste anywhere near if only to keep what remains uncontaminated. Any safe guards are not worth any risk IMO.

  38. Kit Gerhart Says:

    36,37 I’ve read over the years, that the Yucca Mountain site would be safe for long-term storage, but I’m certainly no authority on such things.

  39. cwolf Says:

    What has become of those back yard mechanics who claim to have made significant mpg improvements in ICE’s? I think auto makers purchased a few of the patents but nothing has materialized.
    If a respectable mpg in an ICE comes to fruition, is it possible to place air scrubbers in cities to further curb pollution at a reasonable cost? Just a thought.

  40. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I suspect efficiency of ICEs is close to “maxed out,” short of something extreme, like running them at 1000 degrees F, rather than 200 degrees F. Of course, if fewer people used 5500 pound trucks to do the work of a 2500 pound car, a lot of fuel, and steel and aluminum would be saved. Then, there’s my favorite interim technology which almost doubles mpg in stop and go driving, hybrids, which don’t have very big batteries.

  41. cwolf Says:

    I could do a hybrid, as long as I intended to keep it a long time. The cost of these things are hard to justify unless long term.

  42. Kit Gerhart Says:

    41 After sorting out the differences in standard equipment, a Camry LE hybrid is about a $2800 premium over the regular 4 cylinder. With my roughly 10K miles a year, the payback will take a while, but I just like the way the Toyota hybrids work, and I like good mpg “on general principals.” I haven’t really checked resale value.

  43. cwolf Says:

    My wife would need an SUV hybrid. I know an Escape is not large enough and her Edge hauls most things but it would be nice for a more square opening or a few more cubic feet. Between the two of us donating our time to functions and activities, the Edge is packed at least 3X/ week. Then there is boat stuff to cart around during the summer.
    I just don’t have a clue to what hybrid would be a good fit. I’ve read the Explorer gets bad reviews and I don’t know much about the other brands. Any suggestions?

  44. Kit Gerhart Says:

    43 There are RAV4 and Highlander hybrids. The RAV gets good mpg, for what it is, but probably has about the same room as an Escape. The Highlander is roomier, but pricier and thirstier. I haven’t really paid attention to it, but you might want to check it out. It would get good mpg, for its space and performance.

  45. Kit Gerhart Says:

    43.44 I just saw that the 2020 Highlander hybrid will be 4 cylinder, rather than V6, so it should be more efficient, less expensive, but slower than earlier Highlander hybrids.

  46. Larry D. Says:

    43 Why does she need a HYBRID SUV specifically? Does she do a lot of stop-go city miles? then it makes sense. Anyway, if you really need this type of vehicle, have you considered a Prius V (the big wagon version?) It has far superior MPG than any breadvan, even a hybrid breadvan.

  47. Larry D. Says:

    41 Hybrids, not all of them but the really good ones like the Prius and Camry/Accord, get you your $s worth always IF you do a ton of city miles. Not highway miles, when non-hybrids do fine.

  48. Larry D. Says:

    38 The Feds spent $4 bill on Yucca (probably twice that in today’s worthless $) and it was perfectly safe, but thanks to the then powerful Dem senator from NV Las Vegas etc Harry Reid, it was killed.

    Which is ludicrous, given they did all those nuke bomb tests in NV just a few decades ago.

  49. Kit Gerhart Says:

    46 The Prius V has the gen 3 Prius powertrain in a bigger car, so it is on the slow side, but has adequate power for normal driving. It has not been sold new in the US for a couple years.

    47 The good hybrids get better mpg in highway driving too, but only about 10% better than the regular 4 cyl Camry or Accord.

    48 A lot more than Harry Reid killed the Yucca facility, including a Rep house vote. I’d think it could be revived at some point. Storing all of that stuff on-site at power plants is crazy.