AD #2758 – Ram 1500 Impressions; Mercedes Reveals New E-Class; Tesla Now 2nd Most Valuable Automaker

January 24th, 2020 at 11:59am

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Runtime: 10:58

0:07 Daimler Denies EV Production Cut
0:38 EU Deadline for Advanced Safety Coming Up
1:30 GM Building New Performance Center in Charlotte
2:44 Supplier Industry Outlook
4:23 Waymo Expands Autonomous Testing
4:55 Tesla Now 2nd Most Valuable Automaker
5:33 WWII Bombs Found at Tesla’s German Site
6:24 All-New Cadillac Escalade Teased
6:41 Chevy Teams with Realtree For Limited Silverado
7:23 Mercedes Reveals the New E-Class
8:17 Diesel Sales Up in The U.S.
8:57 Ram 1500 Impressions

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52 Comments to “AD #2758 – Ram 1500 Impressions; Mercedes Reveals New E-Class; Tesla Now 2nd Most Valuable Automaker”

  1. PIERRE LACHANCE Says:

    the “new”Mercedes E-class looks like an 2008 Accord. NO insignia ! it looks a an old generic Asian design sic…

  2. Larry D. Says:

    Apparently Toyota is not considered a publicly held company, which makes Tesla the World’s Most Valuable, Publicly Held Automaker, with VW (for now) a close second.

    speaking of Tesla, the conspiracy theorists seem to be alive and well:

    “It’s pretty difficult to believe it at this point, but there are still groups of Tesla critics who insist that Gigafactory 3 is not really fully operational. A central part of this thesis is the allegation that Gigafactory 3 does not have a stamping press, which means that Tesla’s China team is only assembling cars in the Shanghai-based factory using pre-stamped panels from Fremont.

    A recently released video from Tesla China has just decimated these allegations in a subtle but definitive manner. The clip was short, less than 30 seconds long, but it showed a busy stamping press operating in Gigafactory 3. The video was released in China, and shared on Twitter by Tesla enthusiast @JayinShanghai. ”

    https://www.teslarati.com/tesla-destroys-china-fud-gigafactory-3-stamping-press/?fbclid=IwAR2MR1Ypy9b5hs8q1xlGZGc2yewAKOfRgmpc5gjkhC_a7tSyJg3227rIvFg

  3. Larry D. Says:

    1 What is the point, if they do not want to have the big star in the middle of the grille, to keep the stupid circle and have nothing in it? They should eliminate the circle altogether, and put the star standing upright on top of the front middle of the hood as they always did.

  4. ChuckGrenci Says:

    Without the Tri-Star it looks like a non-descript t.v. commercial car; big mistake. Yikes

  5. Roger Says:

    Still makes me laugh remembering when Spike Lee tried to sue the Spike television network over the name claiming intellectual property.

    The Escalade used to be the vehicle of choice for young rappers and the geriatric set. Is that the audience Cadillac is courting again?

  6. Sean McElroy Says:

    We wonder if that round circle in the E-Class grille also has a set of LEDs that will form the tri-star logo or if it just houses a sensor(s).

  7. Kit Gerhart Says:

    3 I bet it will have the star, either in the grill or in a stand-up hood ornament, before it hits the show rooms, at least in the U.S. The 3 pointed star is the only reason many people buy the brand, especially cars like the CLA and A-Class. Few people would buy an E-Class only for the star, but still, the car needs the emblem.

  8. Larry D. Says:

    5 “The Escalade used to be the vehicle of choice for young rappers and the geriatric set.”

    Pimps too (some of whom might also be both rappers and senior, if not senile!

  9. Kit Gerhart Says:

    4 Maybe that version is for insurance ads.

  10. Larry D. Says:

    6 I thought that maybe there was adaptive cruise control gear behind the circle, as there is a similar configuration in some S class models (not a circle, but a silver rectangle in the middle of the grille). So if they need to keep the circle there, it can’t be empty inside, looks really lame that way.

  11. Kit Gerhart Says:

    5,8 The Escalade is the official car of NFL players.

  12. Roger Says:

    That new Mercedes grill looks unfinished. Mercedes HAS TO have the logo in there, so what’s the deal? Does that ugly plastic circle light up at night time? That still leaves it looking like someone stole the emblem during the day time hours.

  13. Larry D. Says:

    11 The Concussion special

  14. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Toyota has their adaptive cruise sensors in the Toyota emblem on the front.

    https://images.search.yahoo.com/search/images?p=prius+frint+end+photo&fr=aaplw&imgurl=http%3A%2F%2Fpriuschat.com%2Fattachments%2Fimage-jpg.43056%2F#id=28&iurl=http%3A%2F%2Fpriuschat.com%2Fattachments%2Fimage-jpg.43056%2F&action=click

  15. Barry Rector Says:

    John,
    I think there might be higher take rates for the diesel engines in RAM and GM vehicles if didn’t have such a high premium cost. Your thoughts, please.

  16. Lambo2015 Says:

    6 Many cars that get adaptive cruise and utilize a radar sensor up front have had to switch up the typical emblem. In Cadillacs case they went to a painted emblem as that doesn’t seem to mess with the radar as much as the chrome plated plastic emblems.

  17. Larry D. Says:

    15 Of course. This has always been a very myopic policy from the Detroit 3, to ask for an extra $4k and $5k just for the diesel option, while Mercedes purposely priced the E 320 Diesel only $1,000 higher (less than 2% higher!) than its gas equivalent.

  18. Lambo2015 Says:

    “Today Daimler is denying it all. It says it has not changed its production plans.”
    So if material shortage was not the problem, were these top engineers not able to develop a production process to meet demand. Or there just wasn’t any demand?

  19. Kit Gerhart Says:

    16 The Toyota emblem with the radar stuff has both chrome, and black and blue plastic. I suspect Mercedes could easily put their big star in the grill, and put the sensors/emitters between the points of the star.

  20. Lambo2015 Says:

    14 you have to look at it from the side. The painted ones look almost the same but do not have the 3D affect.
    https://www.drive.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/02/2016-Toyota-Prius-How-adaptive-cruise-control-works.jpg

  21. Kit Gerhart Says:

    For most people, the only reason to get a diesel in a pickup truck, is that you just “like” diesels.

    https://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/Find.do?action=sbs&id=41656&id=41655&id=42155

    The payback in fuel for the diesel would be about 10 years compared to the V8, and would be negative compared to the V6. That is before you consider that routine maintenance is much more expensive for the diesel. The Ram 1500 diesel uses 10.5 quarts of synthetic oil, compared to 5 or 6 quarts for the other engines. The oil filter and fuel filter for the diesel are more expensive, and fuel filter replacements are more frequent.

  22. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Here’s an article saying that diesels are not cost effective, even for “medium duty” trucks that don’t see a huge number of miles.

    https://www.government-fleet.com/156355/gas-vs-diesel-the-bad-investment-only-fleet-managers-know-about

  23. John McElroy Says:

    #15. Barry, there’s no question the take rate of diesels would be higher if the option cost was not so high. But the OEMs have people with some pretty sharp pencils, and they must have calculated that the profit margin for “gotta have it” customers willing to pay the premium was higher than the profits generated by higher sales at a lower price.

  24. Larry D. Says:

    22 Ridiculous.

    Is this why ALL serious Transportation even in the high diesel price USA is carried in Diesel Vehicles?

    ALL 18 wheelers are Diesels.

    ALL Cargo Trains are Diesels.

    ALL Serious Cargo Ships are diesels. And the most efficient ones, even since the 80s, had fuel efficiency of the order of 23,000 ton-miles per gallon.

    It is just LAUGABLE to claim that the only reason for a SERIOUS PROFESSIONAL to buy a Diesel vehicle is just because they ‘like’ the diesel better.

    e diesel Engine has 40%+ efficiency while your gas engines have barely 28%.

  25. Larry D. Says:

    24 That was NO typo, I have done the simple math for the 365,000 ton Bulk Carier BERGE STAHL from as early as 1982-3, it had a fuel consumption of 30 tons a day, and a speed of 13 knots. You can do the math too and confirm it.

    23,000 ton-miles per gallon.

    COmpare this to your half-ton gas pickup that gets 20, at most 25 MPG and carries HALF a ton of cargo.

    so it has 12.5 ton-miles per gallon.

  26. Larry D. Says:

    21 FAIRY TALES from the EPA. Is this why you never bother to use their nos but use the more accurate CONSUMER REPORTS instead?

    And never mind all the other advantages of the diesel for SERIOUS applications, towing, etc.

    as for MAINTENANCE, are you effing kidding me?>??? My two Old Mercedes diesels which both had 110k miles or more when i bought them and I have driven for 3 years had NOTHING for maintenance, just routine oil changes, rare ones at that, and routine wear and tear (brake pads for two wheels) for one car.

    DO you even believe the nonsense you are writing???

    DID you ever bother to ask yourself why ALL taxis in Europe, except for few BEVs and Hybrids, are DIESELS? because they can do 4,000,000 km in 20 years (at least the E class my driver just replaced)?

    Just absolutely LAUGHABLE.

  27. Kit Gerhart Says:

    26 CR doesn’t have numbers for the Ram 1500 diesel, or I would have posted it.

  28. Kit Gerhart Says:

    24 If you’d ACTUALLY READ the linked article, you would have seen that they were not talking about over-the-road tractor trailers that do 80K-100K miles a year. They were talking about trucks that get 100-125K miles over 10 years, and are then replaced.

  29. Kit Gerhart Says:

    26 Again, READ THE EFFING ARTICLE I LINKED. It was not about over-the-road 18 wheelers, trains, or cargo ships. It was about medium duty truck driven a moderate number of miles over the time they are kept.

    As far as maintenance, your cars probably have far fewer miles than my friend’s cheap Pontiac, which has oil changes that would cost about 1/3 what they do for you Benz. I’m not knocking your cars. I like those cars, but why are you so nasty and defensive all the time?

  30. Kit Gerhart Says:

    25 Yes, we all know that big ships are the most efficient way to transport cargo at low speed. We also know that trains are the most efficient way to transport cargo over land.

  31. GM Veteran Says:

    Did anyone else notice the pink 59ish Cadillac in the background in the side shot of the new E Class? Symbolic? Dumb luck? Hmmmmmm.

    Another interesting observation: The most expensive luxury model sold by the Chrysler Group is the Ram pickup. The traditional Chrysler luxury brand models don’t even come close to this price range. My, how the industry has changed!

  32. Kit Gerhart Says:

    31 A Challenger Redeye Widebody with all the boxes checked might beat out the truck a little, but not by much. I did a “build and price” checking most boxes, and came up with $82,030. Yeah, the industry has changed, with a pickup truck costing even close to as much as the “ultimate Mopar muscle car.”

    https://www.dodge.com/bmo.challenger.2019.html#/build/packages/32931/CUD201903LADR22C/2JQ/ESJ,DFE,TYS,WSC,EX,AJV,AMA,AYK,AAY,ADG,APA,UAQ,GWA,CGQ,X9,PDN,27Q,3EJ

    I don’t know if that link will work.

  33. merv Says:

    there are a number of pickups here in Canada when all done with taxes etc exceed the $1000000 mark

  34. merv Says:

    100000 not one million,sorry

  35. Phred Says:

    You keep reporting on the Lives to be saved” if only a “blah blah” safety system was adopted by the industry. Have you ever performed a deep dive into the statistical assumptions to arrive at these conclusions? Have you ever fact checked these claims years afterward they were adopted for real world evaluation as to the validity?

  36. Bobby T Says:

    29, Kit, couldn’t agree more with your last sentence, but I think you are wasting your time. Just be glad you don’t work for him!

  37. Kit Gerhart Says:

    36 Yeah, true.

  38. Mark Brichacek Says:

    Also modern diesel engines used in trucks have complex emission systems like diesel exhaust fluid systems and particulate filters that are expensive to service if they are out of warranty.

  39. Kit Gerhart Says:

    31 You’re more observant than I am with those pictures. Yeah, it looks like a ’59 Cadillac. Most of the vehicles in the photo look like they are abandoned to rust away, but from what little you can see from the pic, the Cadillac looks ok.

  40. Larry D. Says:

    TTAC has the EPA and GM MPGs for the porky small SUVs the Buick Encore with the 1.2 and 1.3 lt engines. They are pathetic, esp with AWD/4WD (whatever of the two it is). If you make the sacrifice of living with this tiny coffeemaker of an engine, at least you should get 40 MPGs. These losers barely get 25 with AWD, and I bet they weigh less than 3,300 lbs.

    Compare this to my 14 year old 320 Bluetec 3.0 turbodiesel, 4,000+ lbs, 398 lbft torque, 208 HP, and 35.2 actual MPG in mixed (half pure highway and the rest suburban roads with stoplights), and three above average weight adult men inside.

  41. FSTFWRD Says:

    I have found that reading the comments goes so much faster if I skip over all the postings by Larry D. And I DOn’t CAre WHat I MIss. Now I’m off to pay way too much for my groceries while I drive my new car. FOolis ME, or is that STupid ME? I’m sure he will have a name to call me.

    Thanks to John and Shawn, I do like the show and have been watching it for many years.

  42. FSTFWRD Says:

    Make that Sean, sorry.

  43. Larry D. Says:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GhDK91slrok

    Meanwhile, among the very impressive additions of superchargers literally all over the world, now you can drive the 4,000 miles (6,000 KM) from Vancouver to Halifax 100% on superchargers, many of them the more advanced type.

  44. Kit Gerhart Says:

    https://www.forbes.com/sites/greatspeculations/2020/01/24/tesla-stock-to-0/

  45. Larry D. Says:

    44 idle speculations. Any Stock can go to zero and many have. GM, Chrysler (twice) remember?

    if the authors had any ethics they would also try to estimate the PROBABILITY of that event for the Tesla stock they supposedly researched.

    In the case of GM, there was a “death watch” at TTAC that ran like 1,000 days before it actually happened.

  46. Larry D. Says:

    IMHO the difficult time for Tesla is already behind it, and it was the time when Musk called it a “Production Hell” to become a mass producer major automaker with the Model 3.

  47. Larry D. Says:

    46 That was the time when Musk slept on the factory floor (I assume on some kind of a bed) until the problems were fixed.

    I just can’t imagine Rick Wagoner, the inbred GM finance type CEO doing the same in his plants. Or the Chrysler Guy whose name I can’t even remember. Was it Bob Eaton?

  48. Larry D. Says:

    45 A few days ago there was a woman who predicted 6,000. She’s a fund manager formerly summa cum laude from USC. I posted the link. So if you take the average, of 0 and 6,000=3,000. There you have it. Only she said it will take 5 years to get to 6,000.

    Bob Wilson, I hope you don’t take all this seriously. Especially the Forbes’ guy.

  49. Kit Gerhart Says:

    45 Actually, Chrysler did not go to zero twice, if you are talking about ~1979 as one of the times. I now have 62 shares of Daimler AG, as the result of 5 shares of Chrysler that my father bought in 1966.

  50. Larry D. Says:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hjCnuyqEacQ

    For those who want to get informed instead of speculating. Serious discussion of how Tesla dealt with the battery issue. The speaker also understands and mentions the ‘obsession’ with vertical integration.

  51. Doug S Says:

    “diesel Chevrolet Colorado and Equinox, and GMC Canyon fell 50%, and the Nissan Titan diesel was down 37%. ”

    The diesels today are some of the best engines in the industry but marketing or terrible at best and unless you are a gear head you don’t understand the initial cost investment ($5000) and every moron you talk to say but it is more expensive than gas never considering that it is cheaper than premium fuel and due to better fuel economy that you end up spending about the same. When it is winter you get diesel every 2-3 weeks when weather is better or price is better. You might as well list all the diesels that are no longer in production : cruze diesel, titan (no longer in production), equinox/terrain (nearly if not stopping production), jeep grand cherokee diesel (last in 2018), titan is no longer a diesel to so of course sales will be down. The colorado diesel is terrible. Why would you spend the extra money when the gas alternative is faster and tows not much different. The new small diesel in the full size should be in the colorado ( all the full sized small diesels from ford, gm, ram are perfect but should be on smaller suvs and midsized trucks)
    and the colorado shoulder be independent suspension and have active cruise. All manufacturers should be using diesels as performance, economy, and torque. Too many manufacurers use diesels as only economy and no performance. The equinox diesel is terrible for acceleration. I think it is something like 10 sec plus 0-60 time. How would you get an average person to drive something that slow? The 2014 old cruise diesel made much more sense in both hp and torque from 2014 (how could gm come out with a less powerful diesel for a newer model?). All manufacturers should let you chose the diesel in entry models but they not only limit in mid to upper packages plus charge $5000 more than other gas engines so in the end it costs you 10-15000$ to get a diesel that is a big reason why sales fail besides the terrible marketing. I have a 2018 Jeep Grand Cherokee (a great diesel although it would be nicer to have the latest ecodiesel). I went from NE Ohio to Niagra Falls, Toronto (with traffic) and drove back home on one tank no electric, few hybrids, and few gasoline engines can come close to 669 miles on one tank!! Politicians are trying to kill the diesels in the US and Europe after VW and it is not fail that VW is still profitable after that. The old chevy cruise crushed the VW jetta cheating diesel in range and no one remembers that. I am begging the manufacturers to wake up before diesels in smaller than full sized trucks are gone.

  52. Doug S Says:

    not fair about VW I mean and sorry listing titan twice in early comment.