AD #2068 – Could Trump Raise Car Import Taxes?, Converting Wastewater to Biofuel, Training Techs with Virtual Reality
March 17th, 2017 at 11:50am
To watch this episode on YouTube click here.
- Training Techs with Virtual Reality
- Converting Wastewater to Biofuel
- NVIDIA & Bosch Create AI Self-Driving Computer
- Goodyear’s Futuristic Tires
- 37 Seconds in the Autoline Garage
- Could Trump Raise Car Import Taxes?
On today’s show…Bosch and NVIDIA develop an artificial intelligence supercomputer for autonomous driving…Spanish automaker SEAT helps create a process to convert wastewater into biofuel…and John thinks Trump could be seriously thinking about raising import taxes on cars. All that and more coming right up on Autoline Daily.
This is Autoline Daily the show for enthusiasts of the automotive industry.
TRAINING TECHS WITH VIRTUAL REALITY
Virtual reality is making something of a comeback and now Honda is using the technology on the factory floor. One of its engineers created a virtual world for maintenance and equipment service techs to practice their welding techniques before they ever enter a welding booth. This allows them to hone their skills without using up materials. So, not only is Honda improving technical training but also its cutting costs.
CONVERTING WASTEWATER TO BIOFUEL
One of the fastest ways to reduce carbon dioxide emissions is to reduce the amount of carbon in fuel. And using biofuels is one way to achieve that. That’s why Spanish automaker SEAT, which is owned by VW, teamed up with a company called Aqualia to develop a process to convert sewage water into sustainable biomethane. At a treatment plant, a decanting process separates the water from the waste, which is then converted into gas following a fermentation treatment. Every day, a medium sized plant can treat around 2.6 million gallons of water and generate 264,000 gallons of biomethane, enough for more than 150 vehicles to drive 62 miles per day. The renewable biofuel can be used in compressed natural gas vehicles, and the production and consumption of it can reduce CO2 emissions 80% compared to gasoline-powered cars.
NVIDIA & BOSCH CREATE AI SELF-DRIVING COMPUTER
NVIDIA, one of the top companies that makes processors for autonomous driving, just entered into a couple of new partnerships to make that technology a reality. It collaborated with Bosch to create an artificial intelligence supercomputer for Level 4 autonomy, meaning no human intervention is needed. It’s the first to incorporate NVIDIA’s Xavier technology, which is able to process up to 30 trillion deep learning operations a second while only drawing 30 watts of power. NVIDIA also revealed it’s working with truck maker PACCAR to develop an autonomous big truck.
And we’ll be back with more right after this.
GOODYEAR’S FUTURISTIC TIRES
Concept cars are nothing new, a concept tire on the other hand is a bit unusual. But Goodyear is thinking about the future and created these interesting tires. The IntelliGrip Urban tire is designed for autonomous driving and ride-sharing. It features sensors that gather info about road and weather conditions, which is shared with the vehicle to optimize speed, braking, handling and stability. The tire is tall and narrow to help reduce rolling resistance and extend range for electric cars. While this tire is for the not too distant future. The other concept seems like something from a sci-fi movie. Called the Eagle 360 Urban, it’s sphere shaped for our autonomous future. It features vehicle-to-infrastructure capabilities and it also uses Artificial Intelligence to improve braking, handling and efficiency. It’s made from a bionic skin consisting of a super-elastic polymer. And it’s able to adapt its tread pattern to driving conditions with the help of actuators beneath the surface. Who knows when or if we’ll see these in action but it’s interesting to see even tires could drastically change because of autonomy.
37 SECONDS IN THE AUTOLINE GARAGE
Say have you seen our new car review feature, 37 Seconds in the Autoline Garage? If not here’s a taste of what you’ve missed.
(The 37 Seconds with the Ford Raptor can only be viewed in the video version of today’s show.)
And to see more of our 37 Second reviews, just head on over to our YouTube channel to watch the rest.
Coming up next, why John thinks President Trump is seriously considering raising the import tax on cars.
COULD TRUMP RAISE CAR IMPORT TAXES?
President Trump promises he’s going to make a big league announcement about the auto industry next week. He also told automakers he expects them to build a bunch of brand new assembly plants. But automakers will not invest in unnecessary capacity unless they’re forced to. So would Trump raise the import tax on cars? That would definitely get some automakers to seriously consider building new assembly plants in the US.
Here are the possible implications for the car companies:
GM: goodbye to all those Korean and Chinese imports.
Ford: not much implication except for Mexico.
FCA: Alfa is crippled, Fiat is dead.
Toyota, Honda, Nissan, Hyundai, Kia: call the construction crews.
Subaru: can we buy that old Mitsubishi plant?
Mitsubishi: Crikey, if we had known this a year ago we’d have kept the plant. Time to double down on selling more cars in Thailand
Mazda: we’re toast
All the Europeans: time to raise prices!
The U.S. has a 2.5% import tax on cars and a 25% tax on trucks. All Trump would have to do is increase the tax on cars to 25% to set this scenario in motion.
Anyway that’s how I see it, as always we welcome your comments.
And that wraps up today’s show. Thanks for watching and we invite you right back here again on Monday.
Thanks to our partner for embedding Autoline Daily on its website: WardsAuto.com