AD #2901 – BMW Shares New M4 Details; Kandi Wants Plant in North America; Subaru Shows Off New Levorg

August 21st, 2020 at 11:56am

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Listen to “AD #2901 – BMW Shares New M4 Details; Kandi Wants Plant in North America; Subaru Shows Off New Levorg” on Spreaker.

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Runtime: 8:31

0:07 Experts Predict Tenfold Increase in EV Sales
0:44 Kandi Wants Plant in North America
1:29 Tesla Developing New Rear Seat Reminder Sensor
3:13 Lexus ES Now Available with AWD
4:19 BMW Shares New M4 Details
4:53 Rolls-Royce Dawn Silver Bullet
6:13 Mercedes Offering Connectivity Retrofit
7:16 Subaru Shows Off New Levorg

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56 Comments to “AD #2901 – BMW Shares New M4 Details; Kandi Wants Plant in North America; Subaru Shows Off New Levorg”

  1. Larry D. Says:

    The 2 seat Dawn is an IDIOTIC idea. The standard DAWN is a truly beautiful (esp in dark blue and orange leather and teak wood inside) AND practical, imposing convertible that feels safe AND sits 4 in COMFORT. Only a sick idiot would buy this idiotic version that covers (and cancels) the back seat area with no benefit whatsoever

  2. Larry D. Says:

    I clicked at the link of the so-called experts predicting the tenfold increase of EV sales (so from 1-2%, of which 80%V are TESLAS to 10-20%, of whuch HOW MANY will still be TESLAS?) and found NO details. Not that I would buy them, necessarily (the details, not the EV)

  3. ChuckGrenci Says:

    1, One of my questions; what did they do with the space they just covered up. Aerodynamic (my eye); that shape has been around forever.

  4. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Isn’t the LeVorg the next generation Impreza wagon, but with a new name?

  5. Larry D. Says:

    3 I assume they did absolutely nothing with the rear seat space. THey seem to have covered it and it does not look like it can open to store stuff.

  6. Kit Gerhart Says:

    3. More cargo space? I agree with L.D. in #1. Why would they do this? It looks silly, and has nothing new to offer.

  7. Rey Says:

    Think of Kandi and BYD as the first wave of Chinese Auto coming to the N.American markets, similar to the Japanese of the early 70s and Hyundai/Kia of themid 80s early 90s, and Detroit losing more marketshar. Ten(10) more years and Detroit will have Chinese Masters,yes laugh,Geely owns 100% of Volvo cars and 10% of Daimler.

  8. Dave Says:

    With gigafactories in Berlin, Austin, Shanghai all producing 1 million cars a year, each plus Freemont What can I say, just a Tesla nut bar I am

  9. Kit Gerhart Says:

    From autoblog, re. the $20K Kandi:

    “The Kandi K27 has space for four and a top speed of 63 mph, with “a driving range of up to 100 miles” from a 17.7-kwh battery pack. Its $20,490 “haggle-free” price tag puts it in a space that isn’t close to any other new electric vehicle.”

    It doesn’t sound very appealing to me. With such a small battery, ~$20K sounds like about the right price, even if it were from somewhere other than China.

  10. Rey Says:

    Total Cost of Ownership and the cost of fuel will dictate the share of ICE AND PURE BEVs in the future from 2025 to 2030, no stopping BEVs , and that is why TSLA is @ $2050 today , Aug 21 2020 , OK you Tesla haters, let the hate begin!

  11. Larry D. Says:

    6 A 2 seat version with a sporty title would fly better if this was a Bentley. Bentley has a short, comparatively affordable (used to be $140k new, now probably $200k) convertible version of its coupe. I see no reason for ROlls to dabble in “silver bullets”.

    (I used to fantasize that I’d propose to the RR bigwigs that they develop a pickup truck called the “Silver Vegetable”. I have not seen such a Rolls, but I do have a couple photos of a red/brownish RR SIlver SHadow wagon (or shooting brake as they call it), and see how many would have a stroke.

  12. Lambo2015 Says:

    It would be interesting to know the assumptions that were used to predict this 11% increase in EV sales in the next ten years. EV sales saw a decline in 2019 from 18 and I would guess 20 will see another decline but not a fair indicator with everything going on.
    I’ve said it here before and truly believe that EVs might be close to their saturation point until some huge improvements are made. When they overcome the things that are a disadvantage over a ICE they will not see this huge growth. The prices sorta came down a little but really its just more EVs are being offered in categories they can compete in. Truck and luxury vehicles.
    To really start capturing market share EV needs to be priced the same as a comparable ICE. have the range, have the recharging time close to getting gas, and network of charging locations.
    I think they can get there in ten years but it will take a few after that to capture that % of sales. IMO

  13. WineGeek Says:

    Sean you know what they say “Figures don’t lie liars figure” 10 times the EVs? Possibly, but unlikely…

  14. Lambo2015 Says:

    6 Why wouldn’t they just offer this as a removable cover? Keep your 4 seats and ability to transport 4 people but offer a package that includes this cover to transform it into a 2 seater coupe?
    Nice idea for some aftermarket company. They could offer a similar cover for a more high volume vehicle like Mustang.

  15. WineGeek Says:

    Is that real AWD in the Lexus ES or Toyota’s Electric assist system which is only part time AWD because it runs off the same battery as the hybrid and that battery can run down pretty quickly under heavy demand AWD and then you end up with front wheel drive and no AWD when you need it most. Why don’t you ever mention that shortcoming when you talk about these “electric” AWD (rear electric assist) systems?

  16. Kit Gerhart Says:

    11 Somewhere, I have a 35mm slide of a Rolls-Royce motor home. I saw it on. a motorway in Scotland when I was there in 1970. The “home” part looked like a very small house, with a gable roof. I’m sure Rolls had nothing to do with the conversion.

  17. Kit Gerhart Says:

    A doubling or tripling of gas price would increase the sales of EVs, and hybrids, but that is not likely to happen any time soon, with the glut of oil production.

  18. Albemarle Says:

    I think the U.S. market will go its own way with EVs, like it has with pickup trucks. Cheap gas prices and a lukewarm approach to climate change lead me to believe the power train experts are all wet wrt the U.S. market.

  19. Kit Gerhart Says:

    15. The ES AWD is four cylinder gas, with mechanical 4wd. I don’t know if you consider that “real” or “fake,” but it delivers power to the rear wheels, only when traction is being lost. The 4WD version will cost the same as the V6, be slower than the hybrid, and use a lot more gas than the hybrid.

  20. Kit Gerhart Says:

    18. I agree, unless something changes a lot, be it attitudes, laws, or fuel prices.

  21. Albemarle Says:

    I think that Rolls looks great. If I was to get one it would probably be that model. Just luxury for two people. I wouldn’t want the rear deck removable but it might be nice if the trunk extended up to the back seats. Easier to fit bodies in without bending. Practical, don’t you know?

  22. Daniel Busch Says:

    AND, if you haven’t used the Mercedes service appointments online booking, try it. It takes more customer time accurately describing the issues, which should be a good thing, if the dealer has the capability to actually fix the problem whatever my description. The cars are highly computerized and frankly do not need, or want, human input as to what needs attention. My last experience: 3 trips to repair it. So I have concluded that the car slightly resents me as a driver as well as the service tech’s intervention in the repair.

  23. Alex Carazan Says:

    EV FORECAST: Powertrain experts are of course not market experts. EV’s have now been offered in USA automotive market for about 1 decade. Today they represent only about 1.6% of new vehicle sales. Their key issues are high cost, low range, long charge times, and little charge infrastructure. Most of these issues have not been solved. Power density and range has been improved but still significantly less than standard ICE or HV vehicles. Fast chargers are getting better but are very expensive and not plentiful in the infrastructure. Long family trips in an EV are impossible.

    Tesla enjoys about 84% of the EV market share in the USA and those buyers are fairly wealthy and the vehicles are expensive performance luxury niche segment. The Nissan Leaf and Chevy Bolt sales are tiny/irrelevant and are in segments Americans have low interest.

    Just because many auto makers are announcing new EV’s does NOT mean they will sell in any significant volumes. For many years now the EV advocates keep pushing the group think that an EV sales hockey stick curve is coming. These same people ignore the past facts or the truth that EV’s offer little value to end users and have huge issues still unresolved.

    It is truly bizarre to listen and watch so many in the automotive market keep pushing for EV’s and investing billions in losing business case.
    I keep wondering why? I guess the “experts” should know right?

  24. XA351GT Says:

    So that Kandi is going to be just a city car I take it? 63 MPH top speed would get you killed on a highway. On congested city streets where the speed is barely above a fast walk I could see it. However parking in a city would cost you almost as much as the car, if your parking downtown . So all those that bitched about Trump raising tariffs on Chinese goods had better take a good look at the figure given, 2% vs 25% . Does anyone anywhere really think that is fair trade? I have said for years the US should adopt a equal trade policy where we will tax and tariff imports exactly as those countries tax and tariff ours. Big difference between free trade and fair trade.

  25. Lambo2015 Says:

    23 Well stated.. I often wonder if in like 2040 they will look back and say, Yeah I remember when the EV craze was a thing. It got a little traction filled a small niche then fizzled out.

    The technology is best suited for short range items and may find a better use in boats, jet skies or maybe autonomous delivery vehicles that operate within a restaurant or grocery store delivery area. Or maybe some other yet discovered use. Just not sure about being able to replace the daily driver family sedan/SUV.

  26. ArtG Says:

    RR Silver Bullet. Great idea. LOL. The 1962-3 T-Bird had a Sports Roadster option which came with a fiberglass tonneau cover for the rear seat. At least in that case, it retained the rear seating area if you needed it.

  27. ArtG Says:

    Is the Toyota AWD system for the ES so fragile that you’re forced to take the 4-banger engine to get it? My 400hp/400lb-ft. Lincoln MKZ has AWD.

  28. Larry D. Says:

    Gas and diesel prices here have fallen from their very high values of last year. Diesel went down from 1.3-1.4 Euros per LITER to 1.1ish and gas from 1.65 (and some isolated touristy places as high as 2.00 a liter last year, to 1.45ish. Convert to $/gallon US and even diesel will be still close to $5/gal.

    Some of the E class diesel taxis here are wagons. The back seat of my driver’s E sedan (brand new, this year’s model) I had to sit due to the CV laws instead of the passenger seat, when I got out I had to duck a foot or so to not hit the frame.

    Also saw a few Priuses taxis, and a black E 300 Bluetec hybrid sedan. Probably has the 2.1 4.

  29. Kit Gerhart Says:

    26. They have a similar system used with the V6 in Highlander and RX, but maybe it wouldn’t package in the ES, without compromising something, like trunk space. Also, maybe they wanted to be able to say that 4WD was a no cost option in the ES. Still, it will be slow, for a $40K+ “premium” car, weighing ~500 pounds more than a Camry with the same engine. CR did 0-60 in 8 seconds with the 4 cylinder Camry.

  30. merv Says:

    22 good one

  31. Bob Wilson Says:

    The Kandi looks like a ‘compliance’ car only 10 years too late.

    Of course Kandi could setup operations at the empty airport Hertz facilities: (1) buy one; (2) drive it like a rental, and; (3) trade what remains back in.

  32. Kit Gerhart Says:

    31 With the tiny battery and under 70mph top speed, I’d think it would need to have an MSRP of under $10K to sell. Then, it would cost $2500 with the tax credit. Of course, no one who could use much, or any of the tax credit would want that car anyway, except maybe as an alternative to a golf cart to use at The Villages.

  33. Larry D. Says:

    Looked at the Kandi link but no tech details, and somebody (was it the company PR clowns or a clueless writer-journalist?) compared this tiny cheap commuter car to the Tesla 3 and obligingly quoted that the latter starts at $37k.

    Really? Why not compare it to the dismal Leaf or the Bolt? Maybe because they don’t sell sheet?

    And while the writer is at it, why don’t they compare it to the Taycan so-caled Turbo S at $250,000? Maybe they can also find one feature of the Kandi that is ‘better’ than in the Taycan (my guess, height).

    Talk about responsible journalism….

  34. Kit Gerhart Says:

    This article has some information about the Kandi cars. A very relevant item, if correct, is that they have less than 30 hp, meaning that they would be strictly “city cars.”

  35. Larry D. Says:

    34 From your post 9 I just read, I agree with u, it offers too little, the battery esp is ridiculously small for a pure EV. If it sold for $10k and had a long warranty, I’d get one for around town care free motoring. Or take my chances with a much bigger used Leaf at half that.

  36. Larry D. Says:

    34 From your libk

    ” Nearly a decade ago, the Chinese brand’s small, Smart-like electric vehicle was available to Oklahomans for as little as $865 thanks to then-available federal and state tax credits. ”

    Now that’s ‘priced to sell”. You can’t buy a bicycle with a tiny motor for less than $1000.

  37. Brett Cammack Says:

    If you’re going to muck about with a Rolls Royce, this is the way to do it:

  38. Larry D. Says:

    Try that. Leno’s Rolls should go to a shrink to find out why it acts like a Bentley.

  39. Kit Gerhart Says:

    37. I love it. I’m not generally into restomods, but in that case, they started with a quintessential Rolls-Royce, styling-wise, which was far from mint condition, and came up with something really cool. They said it had been in the U.S. since new, as a right hand drive car. I’m surprised about that, because they certainly would have made those LHD.

  40. ChuckGrenci Says:

    37,39, “Sleeper” Rolls; the slammed suspension is the giveaway (and the sound if you hear it on the street), but pretty well done. Reminded me a little of John D. MacDonalds’s “Travis McGee’s” retro Rolls, though I believe “Miss Agnes” was a ’38 with a Lincoln mod, as a converted pickup truck. (Loved the book series and a John D. MacDonald fan to the end).

  41. Larry D. Says:

    THIS is my favorite Leno screwing around a legendary ueber-luxury car.

  42. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I thought the body color wheels worked pretty well on the Rolls, considering the stock 15 inch steel wheels with stainless steel trim pieces clearly wouldn’t make it, if you want room for brakes that will properly deal with about 5000 pounds, and 500+ horsepower.

  43. Larry D. Says:

    And this was the inevitable silly TOp Gear comparison test

  44. Kit Gerhart Says:

    43 Those Kandi Kars would be good for where they were.

  45. Larry D. Says:

    44 Given this is the first I have heard of them, there must, incredibly, not have been many takers of them in OK at less than $900.

    The only similar bargain comes to mind was the Leaf, IF you lived in San Jose AND worked with SONY, you could get a new one for a pittance, maybe 5-10k, but those were the short-range 1st gen LEAFs.

  46. Kit Gerhart Says:

    They let Mark Ruess drive the pace car for the Indy 500. I’m surprised, given that little incident a few years ago.

  47. Bob Wilson Says:

    In 2019, Tesla doubled their capacity with Giga-Shanghai. In 2020, Tesla is doubling again with Giga-Austin and Giga-Berlin. Those who truly believe Tesla is failing, put some of your retirement money out to SHORT Tesla.

    With each new factory, Tesla no longer has to pause Fremont to build out Chinese or EU configured EVs. Shipping and import fees and taxes are avoided. Best of all, Tesla will hire the best and brightest in China and the EU.

  48. Larry D. Says:

    “Those who truly believe Tesla is failing, put some of your retirement money out to SHORT Tesla.”

    Nasty, nasty… you want Lambo, Cwolf and Joe (not JoeC, he’s OK) to lose even the pittance they managed to save (if any)?

  49. Larry D. Says:

    Re the shorters, a year ago when the TSLA stock price was one tenth what it is today, they had already lost $3,000,000,000 nd counting.

    I wonder if they learned their lesson then, because if they did not, they must have been devastated during the past year. $10,000,000,000 of new losses for these reckless and thoughtless hedge fund managers and their victims would be too little…

  50. Bob Wilson Says:

    I’m not sympathetic to those not bright enough to tell which way the wind blows. Everyone has the right to be wrong … and pay the price.

  51. Kit Gerhart Says:

    As I’ve mentioned here, I haven’t bought any individual stocks in years, and don’t intend to, but with Tesla stock price, something just doesn’t seem right. The stock capitalization is about 15 times the annual revenue of the company. Meanwhile, the stock value of a generally successful “legacy” car company, Toyota, is about 0.5 times the annual revenue of the company. Something seems strange here.

  52. Larry D. Says:

    51 as I have said 1,000 times, a stock price has NOTHING to do with current anything. It is a measure of investors expectation about FUTURE PROFITABILITY of the company.

    BTW if you find anything ‘wrong’ with TSLA valuation, you should have found even more wrong with the valuations of almost ALL thr SUper-achievers EVER: AMAZON, APPLE, MICROSOFT, and all the current ones, FACEBOOK and GOOGLE.

  53. Kit Gerhart Says:

    52. Yes, I know you have said that many times, and in the case of Tesla, the stock price is still completely irrational. Even if Tesla had 25% of the global car market instead of ~0.5%, it would still be irrational.

    As far as those others, Facebook could go the way of myspace, so of course, their stock price is crazy too. Amazon, less so. They had ~280B of revenue in 2019, and actually sell stuff, do web hosting, and more. In the end, putting money in the stock market is gambling, but can be educated gambling if done right.

  54. Brett Cammack Says:

    re: Kandi Kars

    Anybody else remember Malcolm Bricklin’s attempt to import Subaru 360s to the USA? Do you remember them ending up being sold at Big Lots! stores after the project was liquidated.

    Sorta makes Subaru’s current success even more remarkable considering it’s somewhat inauspicious beginnings in North America.

  55. Kit Gerhart Says:

    54. I remember Bricklin’s Subaru 360s, but missed them being sold at Big Lots. Yeah, Subaru has come a long way, as has Honda. Wasn’t Honda’s first car in the US also a tiny, maybe 300-some cc city car?

  56. Brett Cammack Says:

    I don’t think they ever sold the N360 here, but I knew a girl in high school that owned a Honda N600 car. Seemed to be quite reliable.

    I think the Kandi Kars might be like the Subarus. The failure before the success.