AD #3265 – Ford Denies EV Spin-Off; Baidu Shares AV Operating Costs; VW Proves BEV Better Than ICE In Snow Storms

February 21st, 2022 at 11:49am

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Runtime: 10:15

0:08 Ford Denies Rumors of EV Spin-Off
1:26 Thousands of Cars Catch Fire on Cargo Ship
2:18 GM Launches Use Based Insurance Through OnStar
3:53 EV Battery Production Doubles In 2021
4:36 BYD Launches Yuan Plus with Innovative Blade Battery
5:43 Volkswagen Reveals More ID.Buzz Details
6:52 GM & Cruise File Petition to Put Origin Shuttle in Operation
7:38 Baidu Shares AV Operating Costs
8:47 VW Proves BEV Better Than ICE in Snow Storms

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26 Comments to “AD #3265 – Ford Denies EV Spin-Off; Baidu Shares AV Operating Costs; VW Proves BEV Better Than ICE In Snow Storms”

  1. XA351GT Says:

    With EVs semi regularly turning themselves into Tiki Torches it’ not a stretch to think one of them set off the floating inferno.

  2. Ron Paris Says:

    So the real question is did the lithium-ion batteries in those cars aboard the Felicity Ace simply complicate fire suppression efforts, or were they the actual cause of the fire? Another black eye for BEVs?

  3. Lambo2015 Says:

    To protect stock prices, I’m sure if Ford has plans to spin off its EVs it will deny any such activity until they are ready to go public. It would make sense to do though. Would make for a good AL afterhours discussion on the advantages and disadvantages of doing so.

    I really dislike these insurance monitoring devices. Something way more important than looking at hard braking or speeding is the fact that those maneuvers may be done to avoid an accident and doesn’t take into account skill. I’ve rode with very cautious drivers that are horrible. Indecisive and unsure but I’m sure on paper their driving habits appear good. How about going 40 years without an accident?

    Hopefully in this day of cell phones and advance weather warnings being stuck in a vehicle for more than 24 hours should be a rare occurrence.

  4. ChuckGrenci Says:

    I think that Farley is over stating the difference between ICE and BEV; both are transportation with many similar parts, and as BEV makes a bigger delve into the market, people will (eventually) consider the BEV as any other type of transport.

  5. XA351GT Says:

    Whether you like it or not with all these on board cpus recording everything there isn’t much stopping a insurance company from having the data recovered an using it against if they wish to. Hell Tesla can tell everything you do in your car just by remotely accessing the system . just like all these home security systems that have cameras all over your home , inside and out how do you know who is accessing what and when? No thanks .

  6. S65AMG Says:

    A. If Farley spins off the Ford EVs, he is even smarter than I gave him credit for recently.

    No BEV buyer wants to buy a vehicle branded by an ICE maker, least of all by one of the Detroit losers. Imagine having to explain every time that you have a Ford BEV, when people challenge if it is a real BEV, or an ICE, or a Hybrid. No Tesla, Rivian, or even Saudi-Owned Lucid Buyer will ever be misunderstood that way. On top of that, Investors, in their wisdom or stupidity, currently value BEV makers far more than ICE makers, so it is a no-brainer that Ford will make a Gazillion Bucks if it spins off its BEVs.

    Cargo ship fire. This reminded me of the failed, stupid Bolt that some here, with a straight face, still defend against its “total loser” status. To save face, GM has started producing this worthless vehicle again recently, after selling only 25 (not thousands, 25, plus one Hummer Hippopotamus BEV) in ALL of Q4 2021.

    Yesterday I was driving behind an ‘electric blue’ (appropriately? or should it be “Fiero Red”? Bolt. I remember the wise GM advice to stay 50 feet behind this cheap (looking, but not cheap despite its discounted price) little piggy, but boredom got the better of me and I quickly (using my AWESOME 398 lb-ft Torque) passed it.

    The rest of the news today are not commentworthy, but I have a leftover from yesterday.

    Over the weekend, if you can believe it, the resident Chicken, who is terrified of a little painless jab in the arm, our most vocal Anti-vaccination Conspiracy theorist, you know the clown, the genius who drives a fake Lambo with a Camaro engine, and whose other car is a RAM Pickup he never needed (how come he did not tell us its nickname? Could it be “The COmpensator”?), called ME a “crybaby”? How is t this for a Textbook example of the Pot calling the Kettle Black? Hilarious. I did not read the rest of his silly comment, as it is obviously worthless. I only regret that recently I was actually sympathetic towards the voodoo Anti-vaccination Tesla-hater. (he is not even the number one Tesla hater here, that title must go to GM Vet, who has an immediate Knee-jerk reaction every time we hear great News for Tesla, and tries to nitpick some utterly insignificant detail that makes it look bad).

  7. XA351GT Says:

    Did someone fart or is it just Larry talking SH!T again ? If you haven’t figured out no one wants to hear your unending blowhard BS.

  8. GM Veteran Says:


  9. Buzzerd Says:

    So here’s the problem in my view with the big brother approach to driver monitoring. If I’m not paying attention and drive through the red light I’m a good driver according to the censors on the vehicle. If I do pay attention and stop quick for the yellow light I’m probably classified now as not such a good driver. Don’t bother stopping at stop signs, signal turns or lane changes, drive slow in the left lane…. yep, you can have a discount. You can talk and text the whole time while driving just make sure you’re not speeding and you’ll be fine.

  10. Bobby T Says:

    7, good luck with that. Larry just can’t live without insulting. I was slow to assume that he was Larry, but I am onboard now. Is Rey also Larry?

  11. Kit Gerhart Says:

    It’s very possible that one of the cars started the ship fire, but even if the fire started from another source, all of those batteries in cars parked a few inches apart would create a much worse situation for the fire spreading, and getting out of control, than with gas cars. Gas cars are shipped with nearly empty tanks, to reduce the potential for a huge, quickly spreading fire on a ship.

  12. Albemarle Says:

    I think there’s a very big difference in how an ICE company and an EV company operate, and I believe the credit should go to Tesla. Typical ICE companies plan years in advance, make small and incremental changes, and never break technology cycles. Until a model is refreshed it will not get the better systems standard in their other cars. This method has been going on for so long, the ICE manufacturer is proud of their lack of change. It’s part of the auto industry.
    So along comes Tesla who happens to make EV cars with a different system; the system that almost the rest of the world uses to manufacture product, certainly the tech industry. Better way to do it? Why wait, do it now. This has little to do with EV versus ICE. Tesla could have been working with ICE engines and it would have had the same impact. Actually, I believe it would have upset regular manufacturers sooner.
    What Farley is saying, is that Ford is fat and comfortable in their ICE system of management (rug & a jug) and doesn’t want to have to change. So separate the EV business into a modern management style and let the two companies duke it out. Frankly, it would have been worth Farley’s life to try and change the Ford ICE culture that much.

  13. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I’m with others, in not wanting my insurance based on data logging of my driving. Every time I log into my insurance company’s app, I am offered that “feature,” but I decline. As Lambo said, not having a crash in 40 year seems a much better indicator of how safely you drive, than any kind of data monitoring.

  14. Albemarle Says:

    My insurance company offered us a small rebate for using an in-car OBD dongle. No thanks. Not interested, just like I am not interested in any of the other systems that promise something for your participation, like Facebook et al. I do not respond to surveys, I use Duck Duck Go, a VPN, encrypted hard drive, 1Password and all the extra options. I realize Apple has a lot of information on me, but it’s better to have one leak that you trust.

  15. Albemarle Says:

    It’s not Larry. Writing style is different. Larry was European at heart and loved old Benzes.

  16. wmb Says:

    #11.) It’s hard to imagine what could be done asa fire preventive, in the case of shipping BEVs using cargo ships. The only thing that I can think of is building them at their point of sell, as opposed to that type of over seas transport. On the bright side, since EVs are only being built and shipped in relatively small numbers now, this type of mishap can get OEMs thinking on how to keep this from happen in the future, when the time came and most vehicles are electric!

  17. Lambo2015 Says:

    I wonder if the shipping crews have been given proper training and supplies for these BEVs?

  18. Kit Gerhart Says:

    15 It’s definitely Larry. We had a small discussion about his Benzes, and he mentioned “magnificent 7″ as a nickname for the pre-Bangle generation BMW 7 Series. There have been other clues.

  19. Kit Gerhart Says:

    17 Maybe some kind of automatic fire suppression would work, but I don’t know if things like Halon work with lithium battery fires, and may be out of existance anyway. Halon has thousands of times the greenhouse gas effect of CO2, and several times the ozone depletion of R12.


    4) I agree that the buyer is fundamentally the same as always. The typical buyer is looking for the best A to B to A vehicle at a price point that they can afford. This is irrespective of drive type. As the market for BEVs right now is still very low; we are seeing more of the BEV “enthusiasts” buying rather than the mass market of price sensitive buyers. If Farley thinks buyers are fundamentally different, he will be very disappointed.

    Now, the development of a BEV is actually fundamentally different and on a different time line than a traditional ICE car. This is mainly due to the fact that the architectures are new and not settled like they are with ICE tech. Eventually though, BEV tech will be old hat with incremental improvements just as ICE tech is today. Doesn’t warrant a different business unit, just warrants understanding by his leadership team during this transition period.

  21. wmb Says:

    I participated in a OBD insurance program that reduced my rate and I had no issues with it. They only did it for the first six months and afterwards, when I renewed, t was discontinued and as long as I had no disruption in service, the rate stayed the same. What I do have a problem with is the number of variables that the insurance industry uses to calculate my rate! From red lining, credit rate and education?! I know, I know, they are running statistical values and their potential risk, but whether my credit rate is zero or I only have a 10th grade education, this has absolutely NO BEARING on how good my driving is, or is not (or is it: how well my driving is?)! What that says is that a person with several DUIs, but has a double masters and a credit rating of 750+ and lives in the suburbs, can still have an insurance rate as good as or better then a person who dropped out of school to help support their family, has to work several jobs, but is still low income and doesn’t have a lot of buying power, i.e., a lower credit history and lives in an urban environment that the insurance company claims not the red line, but does! The insurance companies are just another of the many organizations that make millions off those who have little, because of their POTENTIAL risk (my bad, this isn’t Larry or Rey or S65AMG; sorry about all the needless capitalization and explanation points. I’ll get off my soap box now)!

    #14.) I would certain hope that Farley is suggesting that Ford plans to spin of their ICE unit. While the burgeoning BEV business is doing very well, IMHO, it may still be too early to just drop what they were doing before, or bird in the hand, to chase those two new birds in the bush. If you just look at all that Ford has just on the full size truck side! Outside of any announcements and not knowing their product/production plans, they are a loooong way from replacing any of that with a sustainable BEV solution. Whether that is even possible remains to be seen! So would Ford just pull out of the that business all together (something they have arguably been the best at for nearly half a century), or just spin that off, or hand-off to someone else? I don’t think so. To your point about how slow legacy automakers are to change and how EV upstarts are much quicker and nimbler, seems a little overly simplistic. Not that what your saying isn’t true, but there are a lot more systems at play in an ICE vehicle, then in a BEV. You have the design of the vehicle platform, the engine (along with its management systems [hardware and software]), transmission, axles, emissions hard and software, exhaust systems, passive safety equipment, infotainment and more. All of this is ever changing, some of it incrementally, but others are much more time sensitive, especially with regulatory requirements with emissions! While the vehicles platform and basic powertrain may stay the same, it may take a automaker considerable time to produce and develop the engine management system to hit the targets that legislators the world over are requiring them to meet, in the area that they plan to do business (not all of which are the seem)! While with BEVs, you have the vehicle architecture, vehicle management software, battery, motor(s), infotainment, passive safety equipment, but not a lot more of the systems as in an ICE vehicle. With fewer moving parts and sub systems alone, this would make the upstart faster in implementation of changes! To that i agree that legacy OEMs are much more top heavy then (many need to be) as compaired to upstarts, having to weed through a lot of bureaucracy, before one gets to the finished product. Yet, when a company is working with so many different systems in one product, then they have several different products in their portfolio like Ford has, what may seem like a snails pace, may actually be quite quick! Think about this, for as much the well deserve accreditation that Tesla gets for being an upstart and Nimble, their Model S has been on the same on the scene, with only incremental changes, for over 10 years! It’s still the benchmark of the industry for BEVs, but a legacy OEM would be already on their next generation of that particular model. Add to that, how many other vehicles has Tesla brought to market in that time frame? Three (3, X,Y)? Ford, just as an example, has had to bring about 10 either updated, refreshed or completely redesigned vehicles on the passenger vehicle side alone, not counting pickup trucks, vans and heavier equipment. This is no slight on the Model S or any of its companion vehicles, it’s just calling OEMs slow to respond to change is in some cases true, but there is a much, much bigger picture to their dynamic! It’s like asking why can’t a person who specializes in making cup cakes, make cookies just as well, since they both are baked and have a lot of the same ingredients? There may be a lot of truth in that question, but cookies are not little cup cakes. Both require special skill sets and while they may overlap in some areas, they are far from the same!

  22. Kit Gerhart Says:

    20 Some people are looking for the best A to B at a price point, but many don’t. Why else would millions of people who never haul or tow anything buy huge pickup trucks, or people like me buy sports cars? EV buyers are just another subset who spend more than they need to for a vehicle.

  23. Albemarle Says:

    21. You make many good points. However (isn’t there always a however?) I believe there is more software code needed to run an EV than an ICE vehicle. I think the current situation with ICE manufacturers is less about complexity and more about tradition. No need to change unless the landscape does. Interesting discussion.

  24. Lambo2015 Says:

    21 I kind of agree with your points on why the legacy automakers appear slow to react. However they have a much larger staff than Tesla to bring many more models to market. So the number of vehicles isn’t as much the problem as layers of bureaucracy in order to get approval to make a decision. Plus I believe when Hackett was in charge there was no clear direction. Ford was trying to buy there way into the electric market.

    For many years Ford has operated their passenger car and their truck development separately. Yet many resources need to be shared, so does it make financial sense to try and operate BEV and ICE separately? The advantages might be as simple as trying to capitalize on how EV stocks are valued. But I’m not sure they can get enough separation to take advantage of that. I see it being similar to the GM Saturn spin off. They created a brand to deal with the imports and in theory and at first was successful. But like typical GM the accountants got involved and in the end was just another GM division with not enough separation to really take on Honda and Toyota.
    They in a sense would be creating even more layers of management with another ford division and potentially slow their development down even further.
    The legacy automakers are all going to have a tough time shaking the image of old school dirty fuel burning vehicle makers. A new division, New emblem, changing the company icon or colors isn’t going to cut it. Few companies are leaders in their industry and are successful at adapting to major changes in their field.
    Think of companies like Blockbuster. Huge at one time in the video rental game. Then came Netflix taking a huge chunk of their market. But then came streaming and Netflix adapted quickly and dumped tons of cash to stay in the game. That was the final nail in the coffin for Blockbuster. When people thought of them they thought of VHS tapes. They tried to offer a streaming service with TiVo but it was too little too late. Being a leader in your industry isn’t enough. You need to adapt at the right time and shaking off the original business plan is a challenge. Ford, GM, Stellates, Audi, Fiat, MB, BMW will all struggle with this change. It will be interesting to see how they handle it and who becomes successful at it. As well as who will fall victim to it.

    Also found it funny that I never mentioned anyone’s name about being the resident cry baby but that was enough that he knew it was him. :-)

  25. Kit Gerhart Says:

    24 Netflix adjusted to times a lot better than Kodak.

  26. Lambo2015 Says:

    25 Its just tough to change peoples perception. Sort of like with Kia trying to get into the luxury car market. Americans have grown to expect cheap disposable cars from Kia and even with their improvements in quality they have been the brand of affordability.
    Honestly I think GM and Ford would be better served to quietly launch a completely different company or buy controlling stake in a start up. I know they think the GM and Ford brand name has value and association should bring value to a new EV. In this case I think it actually hinders them.

    If GM bought Lordstown motors and took a few EVs to market carrying the Lordstown name and kept the separation from GM I think they would find better success.
    Buyers for EVs can go to that dealership and those still looking for an ICE can stick with the old GM brands.