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6-25-2020


John
Good morning saw the piece on the Segway interesting to note. Electric bikes
are a huge thing here in the Northwest and pricing continues to climb median
price for a desirable ebike about 5K and a blast to ride.
Regards
Chuck  
6-25-2020


Hey John,
Great job on delivering the automotive news. I never miss it.  Would love to see you devote a small segment each time to heavy trucks as well (class 5-8). It seems no one covers this much and especially with your and Sean’s enthusiasm and style. By the way, what ever happened to Elio Motors? Any idea?
Thanks again for your hard work.
 
Mitchell
Mitchell,

Actually we do cover the heavy truck segment, but not as frequently as the light duty segment.

Unfortunately, we think that Elio tried to bite off more than it could chew. It broke the Golden Rule for startups: start small, think big, move fast. Elio tried to start big, by buying a gigantic GM plant.
It should have started in an old warehouse and scaled up from there. Now investors want their money back. But they’re not going to get it and we’re surprised Elio has not yet publicly announced that its going to close for good.

John McElroy
6-22-2020


I have never understood why Model 3 & Y are called luxury cars. Maybe the S was, and the X if only by price, but given the issues you just described along with the lack of basic features true luxury cars have Tesla falling short of luxury status. Can’t forgive the quality of materials either. 



Jeff
You’re right. The 3 and Y are not luxury cars, though the S and X definitely are.

For convenience sake, the industry generally uses the MSRP to delineate what’s a luxury car. These days, once a car costs over $80,000 it generally gets listed in the luxury category.
6-22-2020


Did the GM mis-guess their sales and incentives? I just bought a Chevy 
Colorado and they were offering huge incentives (much more than I've 
ever seen on a Colorado), yet they had none in inventory. The dealer 
(in Indianapolis) had to pull the truck from another dealer 100 miles 
away. I've never seen this dealer's lot so empty, especially pickups.

From BobD


This wouldn’t be the first time an automaker was too quick to add incentives or too slow to pull them. You got lucky!
6-18-2020


Hi,
 
The Wall Street Journal reports Tesla down 33% and 45% down "for the broader industry." Does this mean Tesla penetration is up 45-33 ~= +12%?
 
As for the report about Tesla sales down 77% in California, without referencing the 'broader industry' a one-sided report is useless. Was the "broader industry" down 90% so California saw a +12% penetration?
 
Funny numbers are easy to spot because too often they only report part of what is going on in the car market.
 
Bob Wilson
Huntsville, AL
6-18-2020


Dear Sir/Madam,
            
I have been following the world auto industry & amazed that the various managements have not been able to look to the future. They are still producing ICE vehicles, knowing that they will be banned in 15 years.
Norway has 77% of new cars, as EVs, while we barely have 2% - not rocket science - we better improve or join the dinosaurs.
Bob
6-18-2020


Hello Again Mr. McELroy, How Are You Sir???     Are You Telling Me That Ford Is INTENTIONALLY DEBUTING THE NEW BRONCO ON SIMPSON'S BIRTHDAY???  DISGUSTING!!!  DISGUSTING!!!   Why in the HELL would a group of responsible car people want to be associated with that LOSER MURDERER???  Free publicity??  more like evil notoriety!!!  Just because he was found "Not Guilty" in the famous criminal court case (circus?) he WAS later found guilty in civil court, and I believe he even wrote a book called "I Did It" (I never read it and never will, he ain't getting one cent outta me!!!)  This would be akin to the present day Japanese Self Defense Force Launching an Aircraft Carrier on December 7th!!!   And what's worse, he was found "Not Guilty" (I'll NEVER SAY INNOCENT!!!) On October 3, 1995, MY BIRTHDAY!!!   NAUSEATING!!!             STAY SAFE, STAY HEALTHY.      Chas, Plainville, Ct.
Chas,

My guess is that Ford picked the date without anyone knowing it was OJs birthday.
6-18-2020


Yes
 
I like, for the first time, the design language on the IS, its cleaner, resolved and elegant.  The black edges help too.
 
No, Nissan didn't steal the look of the Palisade, but I'll bet FCA is regretting their retreat from that front end lighting setup.
 
Yes, its nice to hear of the Trump/Barra resolution.
 
YES, FORD IS CRAZY
6-18-2020


John,
So Ford screwed up by choosing O.J. Simpson's birthday as the day to introduce the new Ford Bronco. Really???
(When I was at the University of Chicago one professor told us "If I write 'Really' on your paper, it means that I believe that you bought into the BS of the case.)
Look at all of the buzz Ford has already created just by choosing that date. And to top it off, that made the connection between this new Bronco and the legendary Bronco.
A terrible mistake? Or 'dumb like a fox.'
Clinton
Could be dumb like a fox, but the new Bronco would’ve got a ton a great publicity if revealed on a different date without everyone being reminded of OJ.
6-15-2020


The 2021 Lexus LC 500 Convertible reviewed on Jun 12 by John McElroy received a glowing report. Really? You must have discounted that front Cow Catcher grill! How could anybody drive such an ugly abomination? But the Avalon looks even worse. It looks like one of those parking lot sweepers!
-Scott
Torrance, CA
6-15-2020


John
Your show on Nikola was really interesting and entertaining especially when
his wife needed the tractor moved. A real moment. Your show is always
entertaining. And the recent piece with Ralph was really good too. Have a
good week !
Regards
Chuck
Left coast
Chuck,

Thanks for the great feedback, much appreciated!

John McElroy
6-10-2020


John, if the Confederate flags are removed from the race tracks, thousands of red necks will remove themselves and $$$$$ also. I wouldn’t blame them.
JJ in AR
JJ, if NASCAR's sponsors leave the series over this there won't be any races for those rednecks to fly Confederate flags. And I wouldn't blame the sponsors for leaving.

John McElroy
6-10-2020


Hallo friends,
 
please find attached an article about Volkswagen and Herbert Diess. I saw your notes from you in your show yesterday. They are both in trouble with each other. The article is in German. Google translator will fix that. It is out of the „Handelsblatt“ - a very well respected daily publication in Germany - dating June 9th, 2020.
 
"The introduction of the model Golf 8 went katastrophically wrong. The VW ID 3 is coming also month later with an unfinished softwarepackage. That made the labor unions go mad. VW is ruled by the labor union called IG Metall. 95 % of employees in the company are union members. Even the top managemen is organized in the union. The power of the union is unlimited within the company. Diess wanted – and had to - to cut costs aggresivly. Therefore he got into trouble with the boss of the union. Than the battle between Diess and the unions began. The former CEO Piech bribed the boss of the union and therefore he got free hands, which led to another scandal."
 
I hope that is of interest for you.
 
Best regards
 
Johannes Christoph Platz
Portugal
Chris,

Thanks so much for sending this. We love it when our viewers point us to other news sources and information.

All the best,
John McElroy
6-5-2020


Hello John,
 
This is Bo from Winnipeg MB Canada, replying to Wednesdays show. Why buy premium cars.. well the answer is yes and no. I bought a genesis G70 Elite and i love it. For me it definitely leans to being more of a premium then a mass market car.. but the savings are incredible. I purchased it in Canada for $47,000 with great financing. Now to compare it to the rivals an Audi A4 is $55,600, an Mercedes Benz C class is $59,900 and a BMW 3 series is $57,900. When u consider what u get is awesome. Great driving dynamics, quality materials, attention to detail.. even though it has the same infotainment from any other Hyundai and shares switchgear from the Kia Stinger. But saving at least 10,000 is worth it. Did I mention It comes with free maintenance and free loaner cars for the first 5 years? Even if you bought the top model Accord or Camry your still getting a deal. 
 
Now the only issue I have is my buddy Joe picking on me cause I bought a fancy Kia!
 
Enjoy the show John and look forward to the next one!
 
Bo
Winnipeg MB Canada
Bo, we could not agree more. That G70 is a fantastic car and the equal of its Mercedes, BMW and Audi counterparts. I’d say this even if it cost the same as them, and with such a lower price it’s quite a bargain as well.

John McElroy
6-5-2020


Hi John,
I love your after hours shows and was wondering if in the future when you have a show on automotive design (like you had the one with Dave P. on the Mustang) could you ask the designers why license plates are never considered part of the design, but a post design add-on?
I have noticed that at auto show or on concept car designs license plates are never mounted on the cars when displayed to public. BTW - I just peeked at the new BMW design language with the large “KIDNEY GRILL” and the ugly front  with the license plate mounted on.
Very ugly indeed!  Why do we still need to have license plates on cars today with all the  GPS and cloud control tracking on the horizon?
Thank you very much,
Martin
Martin,
 
You raise a really good point. And we have something to say about the BMW license plate when Autoline Daily comes out later today.
 
It’s odd how some countries, or even states/provinces, have different requirements for front license plate.
 
One thing is for sure, every single designer in the world hates them.
 
John McElroy
6-2-2020


I up to now avowed that I would never, never-ever own an electrical vehicle.  
 
Out of a dire need to break the monotony of the Covid quarantine we (my wife and I both north of 70 years old) bought two electric bikes.  We bought them as "entertainment" but really see where they have a terrific role in the transportation mix.  With a pedal assist range of 35 miles or  15 miles of electric only, they really fit a niche in fun as well as functional local transportation.  Scooters and such have much less appeal.  We can ride till our legs give out and quietly motor on if need be.  Battery and motor technology is changing the bicycle.
 
I can see where urban dwellers may find e-bikes the answer to subways bus or other shared transportation for trips.  We find riding in the suburbs to be fun and practical too.  What's more where we live the Class 1 and 2 electric bike law in Ohio treats it as a normal bicycle.  That is comforting to in that if I do loose my drivers license to age, I might still be able to toodle over to the store or pharmacy on my bike if road, weather and the ability to ride a bike is still with me!
 
So in the total transportation mix, look into the e bike.  I think the market for them will be exploding over the next few years.
 
Though I have changed my mind on electric transportation there is still no room in my future for owning or riding in any driver-less vehicle....Until Detroit can deliver to me a glitch free center stack.
 
Glenn
Glenn,

The first time I rode an e-bike (from EV Global, a company which Lee Iacocca was championing over 20 years ago!) I thought “What’s the big deal?” Then I turned around and saw the big, long hill I had climbed with almost no effort. I’ve been sold on e-bikes ever since.

John McElroy
6-2-2020


In your opinion which of the following would be more desirable?



1. a pickup truck with a large storage battery powering an electric motor on each of the four wheels.



vs



2. a pickup truck with an IC engine powering a generator which would power an electric motor on each of the four wheels.



Thank you for your attention.



Bruce
Pickup buyers have the greatest choices compared to any other segment. They can choose from standard cabs, extended cabs and crew cabs. They can choose short or long wheel base trucks, and different size beds, as well as many different engines and transmissions and AWD.

So your question comes down to personal choice and personal needs. And it will come from actually test driving the two different kinds of pickups you describe, neither of which is available.

But since range-extending EVs don’t seem to sell well, it cold be that a pure BEV will end up being more popular.
6-1-2020


Dear Autoline Network,
 
 I found another article on The Drive's website of a photo of a Dodge Grand Cherokee that surfaced recently. Here is the link to the article
I thought it was interesting to share with you and other people. Take care and stay safe.
 
Sincerely,
 
Matthew
Matt,

Thanks for sending, but we sure are glad they never made a Dodge version of the 1993 Grand Cherokee.

John McElroy
6-1-2020


John:
 
I hope you, your family, and your crew are well.
 
I’m not a big racing fan, ever since NASCAR evolved away from “stock cars” to today’s pure race cars, but the eracing idea intrigues me. It would be interesting if NASCAR (or any other racing body) tried new ideas such as “time travel racing” where modern drivers would be put behind the wheel of vintage racers. Imagine today’s NASCAR drivers racing stock cars of the 1960s or 1950s. An even more interesting scenario would put modern Formula 1 drivers in cars from Fangio’s era! How would these drivers deal with old technology in power and tires and suspension? Could bring the talents of these drivers to a whole new class of racing/automotive fans.
 
Sam Fiorani
Vice President
Global Vehicle Forecasting
AutoForecast Solutions LLC
Sam,

What a fantastic idea!

John
6-1-2020


Dear Autoline Daily Team,
 
 I found this article of a company, based out of Russia, that produced a Ford Focus Speedster. I thought this was an interesting article and possibly something to highlight in a future show. Here is the link for the article.
Enjoy the article. Take care and stay safe.
 
Sincerely,
 
Matthew
Matt,

Thanks for sending. Cool car, and the Russian shop that did this is very impressive.

John McElroy
5-26-2020


John,
The danger of on-line purchasing that comes to mind is the buyer that doesn’t do their homework of driving autos to purchase before making an on-line purchase. In my limited experience I’ve seen buyers disappointed with their purchase after buying what they thought was the perfect auto for them only to find the auto they purchased without driving first led to buyer’s remorse because it wasn’t what made them comfortable when driving or owning their purchase. The other concern I have is the danger of hackers obtaining the prospective buyers personal information causing the buyer much distress in the future.
 
Jim
Yakima, WA
Jim,

You’d be surprised, many people don’t take a test drive of the car they’re going to buy. And that’s been the case ever since I started covering the industry.

Cyber security is a big problem for everyone. But buying a car online is no more dangerous than online shopping or banking.
5-22-2020


Greetings!
 
Didn't Fauci say masks did no good?  Don't they make you breath your own breath?  Don't they deprive you of oxygen because of that?
 
Wearing them for 8 hours plus will cause fainting on the line unless they have one way valves.
 
Please don't repeat the directed media line that 'the president should wear a mask' nonsense.  For one, he's not infectious, second, he would be misunderstood and misquoted, then, there is what I just wrote above.
 
r work
Like so many things with this virus, we’re learning new things as we go along.
 
There were early reports that masks didn’t help that much. Now we know that is wrong. Masks do help reduce spread of the virus.
 
Check out this link:
 
The CDC is the entity that is setting the  protocols for reopening safely, Every automaker and supplier is following those protocols, which mandates that everyone who goes in a plant has to be scanned for a fever, wear a mask and gloves and eye protection.
 
VP Mike Pence now wears a mask when he visits facilities and admits he should have worn one when he visited the Mayo Clinic:
5-22-2020


Hello Mr.McELroy, How Are You, Sir?  And Gary V.?  And Sean M.?  And The Rest of the Crew?   I am very sorry to have to write you about this, but it disturbed me ( I guess I'm just getting too old to see the fun in anything anymore!!! ).   And I know you are a passionate motorsports fan, but that video from the "Drift King" Vaughn Gittle, where he spun his car near his living room window, while his wife and son were watching him, and admitted that he almost "lost control" there seems very irresponsible and dangerous to me!!!   While I would admit that he is a talented driver, I think he should do his thing at an approved track, not his home!!!   Sorry.  Chas Orvis
Chas,

Thanks for the feedback and your concern. I’m sure you’re not the only one who feels this way.

John McElroy
5-22-2020


Hi John,
 
I hope you and your family are staying healthy and safe during these crazy times.
I’m an avid fan of yours.  Thanks a lot for your great reporting every day!
 
You probably already received an answer to the question you posed yesterday – why do most Japanese companies start their fiscal year in April?
In case you haven’t, it’s because the April to March calendar is a natural adaptation from Japan’s academic cycle.  The Japanese school calendar is from April 1st to March 31st.
Japanese companies hire candidates by March, and initial orientation/employment begins in April.
 
Please tell me anytime I can help you.  Please stay safe.
 
Take care,
 
Ricky Takayama
Ricky,

Thanks so much for the explanation. I wasn’t aware of that.

John McElroy
5-22-2020


I’m writing this as a follow-up to a segment of your story in the May 15, 2020 column AD #2838, specifically the article entitled, IIHS’ RECOMMENDATIONS TO IMPROVE ADAS.”
 
Yesterday I had a near miss, which I will describe in detail just below.  Last night, when I read your article, it gave me pause.  If I was driving a car that had an ADAS system that took over control to re-center my car in my lane, I almost certainly have been in a head-on collision with another vehicle at closing speed of over 80 mph.  Depending on the angle of impact, there certainly would have been injuries and possibly deaths. 
 
Granted, if both cars on the road had Lane Centering systems, the incident below would not have occurred.  But for a long time, there will be a mix of cars, some with and without ADAS.  And a “bad” ADAS on my car would have been trouble.
 
EVENT:
 
Yesterday I was driving south on Nofsinger Road, which is a rural country road in an area northeast of Peoria, IL.  I was driving our 2013 Dodge Grand Caravan.  My adult daughter Stephanie was riding as a passenger in the front seat. 
 
Nofsinger is a two lane asphalt road, maintained by Woodford County and in good condition.  I was driving about 45 mph going through a left hand turn that opened up to a straight stretch.  At the same time I was rising out of a deep dip, such that I could not see the road ahead.  As I was coming up to the straight stretch, I observed a vehicle in the opposite lane coming north. By my recollection, it was an older SUV, with a pickup-truck look on the front. 
 
At some point, I noticed that the SUV was drifting toward the center of the road, and then his left side tires ran over the yellow center line.  I talked to my daughter this morning, and she recollects that he corrected slightly back toward his lane, but then went back left across the yellow line again and moved well into our lane.  I thought it was 2-3 feet into our lane.  She believes it was at least 4 feet into our lane.  My recollection was that it was a male driving.  I believe he might have been driving while distracted, looking at something other than the road.
 
As he was moving into my lane, I instinctively took my vehicle to the right of our lane, right up to the edge of the road.  I was mentally prepared to take the van into the drainage ditch to prevent a head-on collision. Just before when we passed his car, he started to straighten his car, and began to move back to his lane.  We passed each other with little clearance.  Both of us are sure that if I had not pulled over to the right, we would have hit the other vehicle.
 
As I mentioned above, a “bad” ADAS lane centering on my vehicle would have probably kept me from maneuvering away from a crash in time.
 
Two points of reference.  Over my life, I’ve done a lot of autocrossing, and 14 days of High Performance Driving Education, at Autobahn and Blackhaw raceways in Illinois, and Putnam Raceway in Indiana.  I’ve also been an in-car coach for 10 years in the Tire Rack Street Survival Teen Driving School.  All of those experiences certainly gave me the confidence to do what was necessary to minimize the intensity of the crash if the SUV had come further across into our lane.
 
Terrence
Germantown Hills, IL
Glad too hear that you avoided the accident! But you're not at the mercy of any ADAS systems. You can easily over ride them. So even if you had lane centering you could have easily moved your car to the right hand side of your lane or turn out of the lane altogether.

John McElroy
5-22-2020


RE: Reopening the Auto Industry: Challenges and the Aftermath

John,
I've been reading about the "3T's".    Testing, tracing, treatment
So what will the OEMs be doing to physically distance their employees, and then comprehensively deploy the 3T's effectively in their factories?
 
And how will they help their dealers transact online more seamlessly?

--
Regards,

Dave, Ph.D., M Eng EE, MBA,
Research Fellow
Dave,
 
Automakers have almost two months of experience of running their factories in China with the proper precautions and so far it’s working. There are no reported COVID cases of people in the factories.
 
Everyone coming in the plants is thermally scanned for any sign of a fever before they can go in. Everyone has to wear a N-95 mask and latex gloves. There are plastic partitions between work stations. The work areas, bathrooms, etc are wiped down 3x/shift. One shift comes in and out of one door, the other shift goes in and out of another. Shifts have more of a time gap between them to minimize anyone crossing paths.
 
BTW, these are exactly the procedures that GM and Ford have been using for the UAW workers who volunteered to make ventilators and respirators. They’ve been doing that for a month and a half and no one got sick.
 
Here’s where you can get all the details on GM’s procedures.
5-22-2020


John:  I read on Bloomberg today that Since Bill Ford became chairman in 1999, the automaker’s shares are down 91%, while the S&P 500 index is up 129%. What a disaster, in my opinion.
 
Your thoughts on why there is not more pressure for him to step aside. Is it primarily due to the special voting rights for the Ford family?
 
Jeff
Albany, NY
Jeff, the family essentially owns the company and they’re not going to get rid of one of their own.
5-14-2020


Dear John, Sean, Gary and rest of the Autoline team,

Finally got the perfect mug to enjoy After Hours episodes with you all guys.
Been watching Autoline in Youtube for a decade and feels like a part of my daily life by now, i´m sure many other viewers feel the same.

Keep up the good work guys.

Greetings from Spain
Javi M
5-14-2020


Sorry, John, but I have to disagree with you:
The Corona Virus did not cause all the auto factory shut-downs. POLITICIANS and so-called government authorities at the city, county, state and federal levels forced businesses to close. The media hyped it up, politicians over-reacted in their extreme ignorance, and many of those same politicians have brazenly used the virus as excuse to unlawfully seize power over American citizens. There’s too much evidence out there to show that the elderly and individuals with pre-existing health problems could have been treated without the absurd social-distancing lies and the wearing of masks, etc., that have negatively affected everyone else.  
I like your show, John, but too many people who are reporting on the consequences of all this are redirecting the blame from where it belongs to some neutral cause, as if it was out of everyone’s control.

Ron
Orange County, CA
5-14-2020


Hi John

Been watching Auto line from the days you guys had your favorite beverage by your side on After hours. Your After hours show May 7 with Chris Civea from SAE brought back memories. My son went to Cal Poly Pomona Ca and was in the Formula SAE program for 4 years and loved it he did like Chris said, spent too many hours working on their car. His GPA suffered but he landed an interview through his professor with AVL International. He did a summer Internship in Orange County Ca. and it worked out great. They said when you graduate come see us. He did get a job with them working on Electrification of vehicles he transferred to their headquarters in Graz Austria.  He’s been there over two years working on battery integration and packaging for major manufacturers. Thanks for all the shows through the years and I will continue to watch. Rick from Riverside Ca.
Rick,

That’s a great story, thanks for sharing. We’ll publish it in Viewer Mail.

Best,
John McElroy
5-14-2020


Hi John
 
Your discussion today gets me thinking that Dealers need to seriously get into the YouTube Age and get car buyers to subscribe to their Channels much like Tesla has been doing for the last 5 -10 years. A lot of the YouTubers are very good at it like Doug Demuro. For learning more about Ruby, I use Dirty Tesla or Model 3 Man or i1Tesla and many more. I also liked the Idea of the OEM's selling the vehicles directly and then the buyers selecting a service center for delivery and service. Also, they need a one price for everyone like Tesla has. Try to get a price from a dealer. They will not tell you, which is not a good way to start.
 
Might make for a good discussion for a future show.
 
Being a past GMI professor, really enjoyed the SAE Formula segment. GMI sort of had this with rotating Co-op factory experiences from assembly line to design and other groups and classroom learning on campus. A 5th year project and final paper- thesis with both plant and education advisors finished the education. Many went on to other Universities for advanced degrees.
 
Wifie now says return next week.
 
Take Care, Frank
5-14-2020


Hey John I have an idea why doesn’t PSA-FCA either 1 Combine PSA & Mopar / Chrysler engineers and introduce Imperial brand for higher end more profitable cars that’s underpinnings can be spread through the FCA main money making brands so when PSA wants to introduce its self into the American market they will already have the knowledge, money, product and supply.  



Or 



2. Copy Hyundai & use the Chrysler brand to introduce new products and have Peugeot / DS as a high end trim level of a product Chrysler sells to gradually introduce it into the US before splitting it off. This way you don’t have to worry about the franchise or dealer network with the extra $$ their cars should then be top of their class. Your thoughts ?
GTI Guy,

I think your #2 suggestion could actually happen.

John McElroy
5-12-2020


John,
 
I realize it’s considered un-American to not want a monster power plant in a vehicle which seems to be the requisite for the  custom car builds as shown on Motor Trend’s various car build programs, but I, and I believe many other drivers that enjoy performance driving, appreciate a vary adequate power plant powering a vehicle with a performance-based suspension on a vehicle.
Balance both of these items and you will drive a vehicle of enormous enjoyment.  And don’t complain if the ride isn’t luxuriously smooth.
 
Jim
Yakima, WA
5-12-2020


John: I cannot agree with you more that Ford and GM should consider combining their powertrain operations for their mainstream models. I think they should consider it a step further and share certain vehicle architectures too. For example, the volumes of GM's excellent Alpha platform have never been large enough to generate a adequate ROI. But if they were to share it Ford. I know the thought of the potential a Camaro and a Mustang built on the same architecture is sacrilegious to many, but isn't that better than have both nameplates vanish for good?  
 
The times they are a changing, and all automakers are going to have to get really creative in order to survive.
 
Jeff
Albany, NY
Jeff,

Thanks for sending. We’ll publish this in Viewer Mail so others can read it too.

John McElroy
5-12-2020


John:
 
While I agree with your concept about merging engine operations from an economic standpoint, but that’s exactly the cause of the problem that plagued all three automakers 25-40 year ago.
 
Chrysler was chewed out for using the same “Trans-4” powertrain in all of its products in the 1980s. GM was sued in the 1970s when buyers expected an Oldsmobile to have “Rocket” power under the hood instead of a Chevrolet engine. But the worst problem, and the one most applicable today, is Ford’s issue.
 
In the 1990s, Ford created the “modular” V8 engine. A strong basic design which was put into use in every V8-powered model across the lineup. Tuning that 4.6L V8 for smooth power in a Lincoln Continental, “muscle car” strength in a Mustang, taxicab/police reliability in a Crown Vic, and low end torque for the F150 was too much for one engine to handle. Ford learned their lesson with this program.
 
Chrysler had a problem with their four-cylinder when they worked with Mitsubishi and Hyundai. The Global four cylinder was developed by Mitsubishi, then re-designed by Hyundai. In the end, they had the same problem as Ford, good engine not perfectly suited for any single purpose.
 
And your comparison of the three 2.0L fours missed something: torque. The displacement of the three compared four-cylinder engines were extremely close, but the long stroke of the FCA engine is designed to provide more torque and use regular gas in vehicles such as the Jeep Wrangler. Ford’s short-stroke EcoBoost 2.0L, on the other hand, is expected to return better fuel economy when used in the Ford Escape.
 
Also, the three automakers have different plans for their fours. Ford is planning on full hybrids and turbochargers while FCA has 48-volt mild hybrid plans. GM would have the most to benefit from your idea if their plans for EVs do not pan out the way they expect.
 
Sam Fiorani
Vice President
Global Vehicle Forecasting
AutoForecast Solutions LLC
5-12-2020


In a recent After Hours show about EV batteries, You discussed small company that is developing a product employing a hydronium solution to kill COVID-19.  Despite replaying that portion of the show,  I could not make out the name.  What is the company name?
Brian,
 
Thanks for your interest.
 
Here is a link to the company.
 
John McElroy
5-12-2020


Hi Everyone,
 
I have recently learned to enjoy your channel as it is talking more and more about EV’s.
 
As an engineer who worked a great deal with manufacturing processes for 22 Years, some of them directed to the automotive industry, and experience exponential growth on several different industries, I believe to have gained some knowledge on scale, and what drives economies of scale.
 
It was interesting how one of your guests was trying to drive the conversation to justify his negative point of view on the size of Tesla Gigafactories, even using one of the oldest tricks by using a statement Elon Musk made in 2015 based on the 2014 global capacity. The global capacity has grown in just 5 Years about 8 times driven by demand, not only from EV’s but also for energy applications, and with new plants in construction and/or announced, the capacity will double again in just two Years.
 
But back to the subject, just visualize following numbers. As proven at the Tesla Fremont site, at the NUMMI times they produced at its peak about 429,000 vehicles, and now the same site is capable to produce north of 500,000 vehicles and with a greater vertical integration than any other car manufacturer, as it is much simpler to manufacture an EV, so you can have a much larger productivity and integrate much more under the same roof.
 
If you consider that Tesla average battery size is around 70 kWh, just by multiplying the demand for the cars, they need a total of 35 GWh battery capacity, not considering the demand for energy that is also growing at about the same rate as demand for EV’s. Tesla been vertical integrated are calculating the battery manufacturing capacity from the point of view of EV manufacturing sites above 500,000/year and demand for their energy products.
 
I understand also why CATL was initially working on sites of about 20 GWh/year, as they thought a few years ago that average EV battery size would be around 40 kWh, but that has changed dramatically to the point most EV manufacturing programs are limited by battery availability rather than assembly line capacity. Also they underestimated the seriousness of the Chinese PB about their technology preference for the future.
 
There are still many moving parts and great deal of resistance to a change occurring much quicker than this generation can bear but is no longer a matter of if but of when.
 
Best regards,
 
Carlos
Carlos,

Great feedback. We’ll publish your letter in Viewer Mail so that others can read it too.

Thanks,
John McElroy
5-12-2020


I enjoy you show and try not to miss an episode. You guys do a great job of keeping us automotive enthusiasts informed. 
 
You don't seem to be lacking for interesting topics, but I have a couple to suggest if you are interested.
With the obvious move toward EV by the industry, I would be interested in cost comparisons of building an EV versus an ICE vehicle. Coming from the electronics industry it seems to me that the cost of building an electric motor should be substantially less that that of an ICE. Battery costs are another discussion. The other topic I find myself and others discussing it the cost of operation of an EV versus an ICE on the environment. Yes, emissions at the vehicle level are lower or non-existent at the EV level, but take the power required to power that EV to the electricity generating station and what is the end result to the overall environment?  
I think these would be interesting topics for a future program, if you have not already covered them. If you have I'd be interested in you pointing me to the program where these were covered.
 
Thanks and keep up the great work!
Ken, Longmont, Colorado
Ken,

We actually have covered these topics, but we’ll be covering them on an on-going basis because things change.

You’re right, EV motors and transmissions (gear reduction units) are far less costly to manufacture than their ICE counterparts. But the batteries, which continue to be very expensive, more than wipe out those savings.

The environmental advantages of EVs really depend on how clean the grid is. In areas that use a lot of coal to generate electricity, they are dirtier than ICEs. A study last year from AVL says you need to drive an EV for about 70,000 miles to have the same carbon footprint as a 48 volt hybrid. That is based on a well-to-wheels comparison and looks at the overall US grid. In areas that have a cleaner grid, EVs are much more environmentally better than ICEs.

John McElroy
5-8-2020


Hi, John.
Regarding “Musk Goes off on Stay at Home Order” (Thur 4/30), I absolutely agree with Elon Musk.
So-called orders to stay at home has nothing to do with overcoming COVID-19 – this is about control, and how far so-called government authorities can push their control. They seized an opportunity that has been hyped up by leftist media to push their agenda, pure and simple.
There’s too much good information being generated that reveals the truth about the virus, the actual number of deaths, how it’s being treated effectively, and how government is seizing our freedoms.
Ron

Orange County, CA
5-8-2020


Hello John
I've been an avid watcher of Autoline.tv for almost 2 years.
I bought my first new Ford LTD hardtop in 1973 and my wife and I have bought 17 new Ford cars over these many years. However, sadly, they are not building a type of car we want. They lost us when they went to the electronic transmissions and power steering. We may buy a 2020 new car and we are looking at Toyota to fill the bill. I enjoy all aspects of your show, keep it up.
Stay safe.
Bob T.
Carleton Place ON Canada
Bob,

Thanks for your feedback. We’ll publish this in Viewer Mail so others can read it too.

And if you liked LTDs, and are looking at Toyotas, I’d recommend test driving an Avalon.

John McElroy
5-8-2020


John, Gary,
 
Two shows I really enjoy, Autoline Daily and Autoline After Hours,.
Scratch that, make it 3. I've watched every episode of Barn Find Hunter and check for the next episode regularly!
Can't wait until Tom gets back in the hunt for another adventure.
Sometimes I wish I could re-visit some of the cars in my life too.
My Dad had a 38 Plymouth for years. I watched a video of a restored one, for sale in Atlanta. The seller posted a video and when he drove it, when the clutch was released, it made a sound that I remember as a very young boy. When times got better in the early 50's he sold it. It was dark blue with a white pinstripe, the car in Atlanta looked like it's twin.
Thanks for guys like Tom for bringing back memories, I think that's why he is popular. I can relate!
 
A real Fan of both.
Best wishes, stay safe guys.
Dennis
Dennis,

Thanks for your note.

Funny how you remembered the sound of the clutch being released on a ’38 Plymouth.

My dad had a 1971 Mustang Mach 1, and when I heard one driving in the Woodward Avenue Dream Cruise two years ago, the sound of the exhaust triggered memories from nearly half a century ago.

John McElroy
5-8-2020


John,
 
I'm really interested to know how you and all the Autoline staff/crew are doing with the Corona epidemic. Would you give us an update? How about the donations? Are they helping? Is there still a need?
 
Many thanks for all you do!
 
Barry R.
Indy
Barry,

The Autoline crew is safe and healthy, thanks!

The donations have been very gratifying for us. They’re a small part of what we need, but these days every penny helps.

John McElroy
5-8-2020


This is something that's been floating around in my head for years ... since long before the Volt got cancelled, and I was reminded of it while listening to last weeks After Hours. Anyway, the basic idea is that GM aught to have used the Volt as a introductory platform for powertrain innovations.
 
I'm imagining using an HCCI as the range extender, or maybe an OPOC. Maybe do a Voltec Cadillac with a turbine. Could be a better way to test hydrogen fuel cells too. I think you get the idea.
 
Use the fact that its a series hybrid to mask the shortfalls of the less conventional power sources, while also giving those less-proven designs an easier lifecycle since they wouldn't be used nearly as much over the vehicle life compared to sticking it into a conventional car. The Volt, in effect, becomes a stepping stone for both EV development and for combustion engines.
 
It would definitely be expensive, no doubt. Every car would get sold at a loss. But I would think that proving the potential of some of these alternative powertrains would be worth it. And getting these engines to the point where they'd work well enough as a generator for a series hybrid would be a lot easier than trying to get them reliable enough with an operating range suitable to be used by themselves to power a car.
 
-Davin
Davin.

Thanks for sharing your ideas on the Volt, and what they might have done with it. Interesting ideas.

We’ll publish your letter in Viewer Mail so others can read it too.

Best,
John McElroy
5-8-2020


Hi John:
Enjoyed your show today
, as usual, and I found your suggestion for the Big 3 to combine their powertrain operations very interesting. In business-as-usual times with no other technological and new business model forces prevailing it has many merits.
You certainly had the view of the traditional US auto buyer nailed. In most cases, they couldn’t care less what engine is under the hood, or how many speeds their automatic transmission has, as long as the engine starts reliably and the car moves forward with reasonable economy and no oil leaks.
As much as your proposal has cost saving merits in view of the above consumer thinking, I think there are a few problems with it.
• If (and that’s a big word) Ford, GM, and FCA could be sold on your idea and agreed to it, it would take at least a year (more like 2 years at the pace Detroit moves) to form the corporate structure, put the management team in place, and come up with a plan to rationalize engines, transmissions, and manufacturing plants. This reorganization would employ every lawyer in the country not currently working for or against Trump. It would be an ugly and torturous process filled with much politics and in-fighting among its brand proponents. Many plants would be shut down and many people would be laid off, a huge PR problem for the parent companies. I am not aware of a leader in Detroit with the respect and muscle to knock heads and get this done quickly -- maybe only Bob Lutz in his prime in his Superman garb!

However, if this could be accomplished it would free up funds Detroit desperately needs to make the conversion to battery-powered electric vehicles. They are 5 to 10 years behind Tesla and every dollar and minute counts in their race for survival in the global marketplace. Tesla has just been joined in the advanced EV marketplace by China’s Xpeng P7 sedan announced this week. Why couldn’t that vehicle have come out of Detroit? Aarrgghhhh!

• Powertrains are the corporate identifier for the auto companies – the backbone of their corporate culture – Chevy’s small block, Ford’s Windsor 351, Chrysler’s hemi. With a common set of powertrains, how would each manufacturer’s vehicle brands differentiate themselves? They would be reduced to exterior styling, ride and handling, interiors, and electronic features. Then the question becomes: “Why stop at powertrains”?

Why not rationalize brands and models and save even more? In the end, why not merge Ford, GM, and the US divisions of FCA (Jeep and Dodge/RAM). Your logic is so compelling (and I am not being sarcastic here), why not just go for a clean sweep - the standard American internal combustion engine-powered automobile and/or pickup – Henry Ford’s 21st century dream – the new American Model T. Surely that would be the least expensive and most rational way to proceed. Surely too that would be the traditional automakers’ last gasp.

• The simple answer is that as bold and logical as your proposal is, it is simply a decade too late, even if it were to be adopted. By the time the “Detroit Powertrain Company” gets itself organized, rationalized, and trimmed down to keep producing one internal combustion engine-based product line and range of automatic/CVT transmissions, ICE-powered vehicles will no longer be economically viable, from any organization. The US and world will only be buying battery-powered EVs.

Indeed as Bob Galyen gave several examples of on your Autoline After Hours show last week
, the whole world is going electric now – cars, pickups, Class 8 semis, busses, construction machines such as power shovels and backhoes, trash removal trucks, boats and ships, and even airplanes!

• So, Detroit seems to be slowly awakening to the fact that their electric vehicle and car-as-a-computer efforts are too little too late. History is replete with outdated industry players slowly consolidating themselves to death – 6 players, 4, 2, 1, and then none. Books will be written on Detroit’s ICE-powered industry’s agonizing last decade. It didn’t have to be this way.

Two notes:
• All this written by a mechanical engineer whose lifelong passion was internal combustion engine design.
• Keep up the fine work………………

Regards…Tom
5-4-2020


Hey John,
 
Hope you and the Autoline crew are all hanging in there during these shitty times.
 
You story today about GM closing down their Maven operations reminded me that they had recently done the same here in Australia, together with the closure of their Holden business. This got me wondering if there will be any parallel closures to core GM passenger car business units in the US or other parts of the world?
 
Given that Maven (ride sharing) was one of GM’s star strategic plays (together with autonomous and electric) being used as an excuse to divert attention and investment away from RHD markets I wonder how long it will take for the other two great ideas to also be rationalised / restructured / closed and at what financial & long term global volume cost?
 
Of course the irony here is that if the electric and autonomous plays DO come off, that they would easily support RHD markets as A. electric cars would be very simple to engineer in RHD and, B. autonomous will be “no hand drive” so zero extra devetopment costs are required. Doh!
 
So given yet another GM strategic failure, I thought you might like to get an insight into how badly the GM Holden withdrawal is panning out in Australia. Not sure if this info is filtering back to the US at the moment, so here are some insights for you.
 
The Australian Senate is holding an enquiry into the Holden closure and the Australian competition and consumer commission (ACCC) has indicated that it is investigating the possibly unlawful manner in which GM has conducted itself with respect to its behaviour leading up to the Holden closure. It is interested in calling on current and past Holden staff to act as whistleblowers around GM’s behaviour leading up to the closure. And Holden dealers have united unanimously to reject GM’s first offer of compensation. The professional analysis that they commissioned suggests that the compensation should be many times more than that initially offered by GM.
 
The following are several articles that talk through the current state of play, though it seems to be just the tip of iceberg so far.
 
I'm sure this developing drama is of interest to the Autoline crew, so I’d be happy to keep you guys up to date with any further developments.
 
Let me know, and keep up the great Autoline work. 
 
And P.S. - More Lutz please!
 
Cheers,
 
A.M.
Anthony,

Great info, thanks for sending.

And we’re definitely going to get Bob Lutz back on the show.

Best,
John
5-4-2020


Hi John,
Thank you for guiding me to the airing of your “Autoline After Hours“ program on YouTube at 3 p.m. this afternoon.
Well I found it to be very interesting and especially with Bob Galyen, a brilliant man indeed.  
My conclusion, thanks to the program’s information, is that an electric vehicle is realistically not for us.  Why you may ask, well, we are both retired, and my original thought being that with a battery powered vehicle it can be plugged in overnight while parked in the garage, charged and ready for use any time needed, no more standing at a gas pump in winter and shivering to pieces. Now however, other than the sheer weight of these electric vehicles is safety, the top item on the list as was stated in your program. Oh, I don’t mean from being in an accident, nor getting electrocuted, the last thing I’d want to do is poke around the battery packs, no, but it’s the danger of fire while it is in the garage charging. I can just see me checking that all is okay in the wee hours of the morning, and losing sleep over it.
Aside from the above concerns, there is also the issue of the lack of off-site charging stations, the infrastructure is not yet very convenient, so for this to be so, and the advent of solid-state battery availability, etc, etc., this is years away yet, and time is something we don’t have.
Thanks once again for your help and the taking of your time to address my issues!

Best Regards,
Linda.
5-4-2020


Hi John
 
Your Battery Podcast: The mention of John Bereisa brought me back to 1980 and a SAE meeting where John introduced GM's first digital engine controller. It was called Computer Command Control or CCC or 3C. I was at that SAE meeting. Looking at the article (Link below) shows that John B has been very successful.
 
I was hired from the GMPG in 1976 to Field Manage RCA's technical effort of Designing Chrysler's first all digital Engine Controller and the Training of Chrysler Engineers to finalize the design.
 
The comments about the number of Deaths in China caused by pollution should weight heavy on the ICE automotive industry. I wish our President the Industry was as concerned about our citizens health as the Chinese leadership has shown.
 
Thanks again for a good show. You really appear to be getting into this EV thing.
 
Frank
Frank, great to hear you liked the show with Bob Galyen.
5-4-2020


   What was Anton Wahlman’s background and the reason he was invited to join After Hours?  John, you & Gary seemed to know him but does anyone else that watched your show?
 
Jim
Yakima, WA
Anton has been covering and writing about the auto industry for a number of years. He’s known to automakers and the automotive media.
5-4-2020


Dear Mr. McElroy,
Under the such circumstances regarding to the Corona Virus, it is highly appreciated to keep on having the
show daily, and the After Hours by the TV conference. Thanks for the internet technologies.
 
By the way, in Japan, there is no automotive journalism anymore. Everybody especially those who are the
members of the 2 major journalists clubs became the brown noses of the car importers and the manufacturers.
A example of such was that the trusty journalist who criticized the VW cars and the VW Japan for not announcing
the same information they have done in other nations such as their diesel emission matters, has exiled by the 
club with no reason. He has brought the matter to the court and it seems he will fight for it, but everyone is 
considering that the club won’t let him come back.
 
The reason why is all the others members had the job from the VW Japan via the publications is writing what
VW expects to see and read. And they obey the silent rule of the sure conjectures for such. As matter of fact, 
Those who has done the tremendous job for praising the VW cars had a sudden offer from the publisher to 
Write a book about the new Golf and gets a lot more money than the usual fee. For VW Japan, have those 
Printed books to be sent to the dealers nationwide and give a copy to those customers who bought the Golf 
Is a piece of cake. This thing is getting obvious with those European automakers having the Japanese branch
Manager or the Japanese president for their subsidiary. And in most cases those men are hired because of their
language ability and not because of their career in the auto industries.
 
And Ford has left Japan but that was a bad decision. The Japanese Ford buyers are limited in those who buys
the Mustangs, Broncos and others and never expect anything like compacts because there are so many others
In the market. But when the Japanese public has paid their interests to their 3 cylinder engine mounted compacts,
Ford was already gone. Now the share which Ford had has been taken over by the Jeep! Because most of the
Japanese customers are willing to have something very different and American!
 
GM will be supplying the RHD mid engine Corvettes, say the Corvettes were selling well through their Japanese
Cadillac and Chevrolet dealers but the Korean badge engineered cars had no chance. And Cadillac brought the
RHD wagons or say the Estates but for the others, they didn’t have the RHD models and so there was no sales 
as they had expected. Ford made a big mistake by the decision they made based on the reports they could read
And hear from the president they sent to Mazda; Mark Fields. Now except the automatically sent in to Parking thing,
The Mazda cars are fabulous in both styling and the performance of the new technologies. They even developed 
The hydrogen rich ammonium fuel car which exhausts only the water, and if the gas stands have switched their one
pump with the Ammonium (H3N) fuel tank, with the simple device with the Nitrogen tank to store the Nitrogen dividing
Device set near by the engine, the ordinary fuel injected and or the carburetor cars can be modified to a no emission
environmentally super friendly cars!! Mark Fields is he one who dumped those things and went back to the States.
 
I know you are the thoughtful man and have the insights to the Japanese auto industry but I think you don’ have the
sure information for what there Japanese consumers are seeing and wanting, and what the Japanese automotive 
publications are writing about the American cars and the magazines with much better image and respected names 
having the awful prejudice against the American makes due to their already passed away popular editor hatred the 
American cars. Also there are the Independent Rotary Engine tuners here in Japan which had done all those things
Which your guest who had the experiment wrth the compressed air and failed won’t work. It was interesting to know
and if those things he pointed out works to change the whole negative things regarding to the Wanker rotary engine,
 it would be a big fun, too. But all those RE tuners and the engineers were having the bitter grin on their faces because
All those things were already tested and didn’t work as expected. 
 
But with the hydrogen fuel and the Mazda’s RE (Rotary Engines) are the good match and it shows the way better or say
the better than expected performance. That’s why Mazda has shown the “out of this world” kinda prototype having the RE
for the power plant and have no emission. That car is the true hyper car. 
 
If this COVID-19 matter situation has gotten softened or converged, would you invite me o the after Hours show? I can
answer to all the questions from you and your viewers. If you tell the marketing directors of the Japanese auto maker 
subsidiaries of there Japanese makes that I will be there, I will visit them and get the latest news and things and bring 
those to you.  
 
Anyway, taker care and stay out of the places the virus could be at.
Best regards,
Kenn S.
JAPAN
Kenn,

Thanks for your letter and all the great information. Your observations are very interesting.

Right now we have a full schedule of guests, but can you send me more information about yourself?

All the best,
John McElroy
5-4-2020


Dear John,


     

Harbour air here in Nanaimo has already test flown a battery powered converted deHaviland Beaver. February 2020. It was on the news and all over internet and youtube. Seaplane. Engine some manufacturer from Seattle area. NASA battery since have to be “certified” old technology.

     

Can’t wait to go for my first seaplane ride in an electric plane. They have been saying that should be 2021 for commercial flights. 

       

Have a terrific day and stay safe 



Dave
Dave,

We had not heard about this electric airplane. Thanks for sending.
John McElroy
5-4-2020


Hi,
 
I thoroughly enjoyed Bob Galyen's insights and history. It looked like he was briefly amused and surprised by my question on the battery management patent. His answer was perfect. That 2010 patent compared to today's battery management is like comparing a steam locomotive to a French très grande vitesse (TGV). But I was curious if it had ever been used (some patents solve a specific problem but go no further.)
 
BTW, here is my summary report

If you have any suggestions for attribution or credit suggestions, let me know. I'm in the habit (bad?) of just the URL to the source but also know the pain of plagiarism and failure to recognize the work of others. 
 
As for the guests from Montana and Wyoming, they don't live in urban or geographical areas suffering from foul air. It is easy to be an EV skeptic if you don't have to breath bad air. 
 
Bob Wilson
5-1-2020


Hi John
I just got done watching the episode about EV Marketing Groups. I’m in the construction industry and for me, I relate it this way. Most of my power tools for work are cordless because I use them frequently, time is money, and the tool and battery wear out relatively at the same time. (because battery technology and style or fit change: Noticed that I’ve had DeWalt power tools, that I can’t get batteries for anymore) All of my home power tools have cords because I don’t use them as often, so stringing a cord out isn’t that big of a deal. And I know it will work when I need it to. I live in Michigan and the winter months are hard on the batteries also. Please excuse my grammar. I don’t write very often.
Rick - automotive enthusiast
Rick,

Electric work trucks could recharge the batteries for your power tools or let you run a cord if you wanted. Think of it as a portable charger.

John McElroy
5-1-2020


John,
 
I imagine you know by now of the decimal point error in Gary’s question on Thursday. It should be 100’s of millions of dollars not billions. On the off chance no one let you know, now you know.
 
It  also is my chance to say (again), Autoline Afterhours is the best auto show of our day. Can’t wait until you can all be together again, but the evolving format is a nearly seamless solution to the current unpleasantness. I can see continued use of the video technology to allow you broader access to guests after things settle down, so maybe some good has come of all this.
 
Take care. And give Gary a bit of a hard time. Guys who love numbers should be careful about their decimal points.
 
Jeff
Jeff,

Thanks for the kind words. We definitely like being able to get guests more easily, so the virtual interviews and discussions are a plus in that respect.

I’ll pass this on to Gary so he can hang his head in shame!.

John McElroy
5-1-2020


Hi John, I saw your interview on WXYZ Detroit--so where would a person start looking for the deals that are piling up due to the Corona virus situation? Difinetly not Craigslist but maybe dealers? I want to buy used and pay cash. I am definetly not a seasoned buyer. I do most of my own repair ans maintenance work. Best regards, Peter
Peter,

I would definitely check with local dealers. You may want to look at those who have CPO, Certified Pre-Owned programs. Those cars come with a one year warranty.

Also check out Carvana.

John McElroy
5-1-2020


AAH Crew. Good day to you all. With the glut of cheap oil in today's world why has the price of diesel fuel only come down about 25 cents?????? Rumor of the day: Musk's Cyber Truck is dating Koenigsegg's digital concept car by Esa Musonen. I can only wonder what their offspring might look like. YIKES !!!! Stay healthy my friends. Danny Youngblood
Danny,

While pass car traffic dropped dramatically, long haul trucking and package delivery is running strong. Hence, no gasoline demand, but plenty of diesel demand.
5-1-2020


Hi John, just a quick note to let you at Autoline know how much I appreciate what you provide to me and a lot of others re: information from the automotive world. I regularly watch Autoline Daily and Autoline After Hours. I hope my small donation helps at this time. Keep the good work up, Mike from Ontario
Mike,

Thanks so much for your kind words and your donation. We’re extremely grateful for viewers like you!

Best,
John McElroy
5-1-2020


Hello, I meant to send this in yesterday... but forgot. Story I saw on Autoblog (originally credited to Assoc. Press) about a group of kids who broke Covid curfew. They were a highschool robotics team who are building a ventilator out of car parts & a design from MIT. The extra kicker? They're all girls in Afghanistan.
 
I think that story dovetails nicely with the recent Autoline This Week about women & minorities, along with your regular comments about encouraging grass-roots ventilator production. And its automotive because car parts.
 
Also, the story yesterday on huge in-car screens got me thinking:  these screen sizes should be described in terms of area, rather than length. The '38 inch' screen size of the Escalade, and the 40-something inch screen mentioned in the daily story are very misleading when its a mostly a long, thin display across the dash. To me, a 38" display is a small-ish flatscreen TV (or maybe gigantic desktop monitor). But these huge in-car displays aren't anywhere near the actual screen size the rectangular displays we're all more familiar with, despite the similar 'measurements'. The display area for these is going to be a lot closer to a laptop (with about 1/2 that being for the central infotainment screen), rather than small TVs inside your car.
 
Stay safe, looks like Michigan is among the harder-hit areas. Case count is uncomfortably close to the total we got up here in Canada but you folks have barely a quarter of our population.
 
-Davin
Davin,

We saw that report on the girls in Afghanistan. Great story.

And thanks for sharing your insights on screens. We’ll publish your letter in Viewer Mail so others can read it too.

John McElroy
4-28-2020


Hello John,
 
I just finished watching Autoline Daily episode 2800. You asked for viewer suggestions on how we can start moving the economy again. 
 
I suggest you read Thomas Friedman’s article, “A Plan to Get America Back to Work”. Some experts claim it can be done in weeks, not months, if we act, now! Here is a link to Mr. Friedman’s article in the New York Times.
 
Of particular interest to me, in this article, was the plan laid out by Dr. David L. Katz of the Yale-Griffin Prevention Research Center. Dr.Katz lays out a plan that starts with a country-wide, two-week, lockdown and then rapidly scaling up the economy as we release non-infectious people back into the workplace while focusing our efforts on saving the lives of the older and more frail members of our society. Here is a link to Dr. Katz’s op-ed in the NY Times.
 
It would make for an excellent show segment if you could get Dr. Katz to address your audience. I believe he is offering a plausible way forward for American industry, especially the auto industry.
 
Regards,
 
Howard
4-28-2020


Hi Folks, just a quick email to thank you for your daily production.
 
As I am ‘down under’ in Adelaide, South Australia, Autoline Daily has become part of my morning routine while working from home.
 
The content is always punchy, the overall length is good and the global perspective is always interesting.
 
Thanks again…regards Scott W
4-28-2020


John:
 
Didn’t get to see AutoLine After Hours live, so I just got to look at it.
 
As a former board member of SAH and the former editor of the SAH Journal, I enjoyed the chat with Louis Fourie.
 
The SAH Journal covered the RHD/LHD debate 20 years ago when I was editor. The article (and I’ll send it to you if I can dig it up) outlined that RHD goes back to Roman times where a soldier would pass oncoming traffic on the left so he could draw his sword to defend  himself. As times evolved, the wealthy would walk on the left while the rest of us would stay right. As I’ve read, it was Napoleon who broke down the barriers between classes and made everyone travel in the right lane. As Napoleon built his empire, countries under his control were also moved to the right lane, which is why English territories (and Sweden) remained on the left. Americans switched sides because the Ford Model T, the bulk of the vehicles on early roads in the country, were produced left-hand drive in mass production. Sweden changed sides in 1967 to fall in line with the rest of the continent.
 
By the way, check out the Car Stuff Podcast this weekend as I’m a guest.
 
All the best and stay healthy!
 
Sam Fiorani
Vice President
Global Vehicle Forecasting

AutoForecast Solutions LLC
4-28-2020


So you're having "Montana Skeptic" on to talk about Tesla. Let me be one of the first, though not the last, to say: bad move.
Has your show throw aside all tenets of objective journalism, bruised and battered though they are, at least they had some life left.
Asking MS about Tesla is like asking "Wrong Way" Corrigan for directions.
4-28-2020


John,
I am a fan of all motorsports and especially NASCAR and Indy car racing.  I don’t enjoy watching reruns of past races when the winner is already known when the race is rerun.  I am enjoying I-Racing, but miss the pit crew action where races are often won or lost.  Even my wife, who is not a fan of any kind of racing, thinks the races look very real.  I’m disappointed that a couple NASCAR drivers, namely Kyle Larson & Bubba Wallace, seem to be able to take this racing seriously enough to shoot themselves in both feet.
 
Jim
Yakima, WA
4-27-2020


On today's show April 16th in regard to Tesla you mistakenly said Tesla remained private, while you meant to say the company would remain public (7:56). Just thought I would point that out.
I think Ford will fold, unless they get bailed out, their financials are a basket case.
4-27-2020


Johnny Mac. A belated Happy Birthday to you. Now in reference to Brandon Vivian. Talk about boring, seemingly scripted answers and the inability to let some juicy tidbits out to entice the Autoline viewers. Now I see why Cadillac has a marketing problem in trying to project any "new image." In my opinion his answers fit the old, stodgy, dull, uninspired, wealthy "old fart" image that they have. So sad. Later Danny Youngblood
4-27-2020


I noticed a similarity to the report of VW's reopening of plants idea with the 100 point system and an episode of The Office where Michael Scott lays out a similar plan....
 
I made a video splicing the two together, I hope it goes the viewer suggested car-related segment at the end of the episodes that you initiated since the virus hit.
 
Thank you!
 
Sincerely, 10YR fan.
Thanks for sending. We’d love to use it but unfortunately we can’t use it because it would violate copyright protection.

John McElroy
4-27-2020


Just like the coronavirus models were wrong, the climate change models are wrong. They sure did not factor in a year of no driving or flying. But the models are just wrong. 
Please ask them how they factor in all the water we have stolen from the ocean? 
We know that lakes are heat sinks. We have added thousands of lakes and stolen that water from the ocean. That is why the ocean temperature is rising because there is less water in the ocean. The only place the ocean can get more water is the polar ice caps. Please respond.

Ocean levels are rising, not falling.
4-27-2020


Just sent my paltry donation. Considering I've watched 2,819 Dailys and 504.5 AAHes, my $30.00 covers less than a penny per show so that seems a bit shameful.



Plus, you've mentioned my name about five times counting viewer mails and FB meme postings so I think I'm pretty much committing robbery.



Thanks for the shows and all the inside scoop on the industry and its products. Of all the auto pundits on the Internet, John is the most consistently trustworthy and (it turns out) accurate in his analyses.



Thanks so much!
Kevin,

Thanks for the kind words and the donation. We truly appreciate it (and your postings!)

John
4-22-2020


Hey John,
 
Began listening to Autoline Daily in podcast form about five years ago, and have caught every
episode since.
 
Absolute must-hear content for serious enthusiasts and media professionals.
 
My weekly podcasts is much informed by Detroit Autoline.
 
Amazing that this information has been free all along. Happy to chip in now.
 
Here's to a quick recovery and a return to product news.
 
Stay strong, stay healthy

Tom
Tom,

Thanks for the kind words, and for chipping in!

Much appreciated,
John McElroy
4-22-2020


Thought you might enjoy this John 
 
This is 99 year old Tom Moore  ex WW2 army veteran  He set out to raise £1000  for fight against the virus by walking 100 laps of his property, before he clocks up 100.
 
There are still 2 weeks to go before his 100th birthday  so far £28million pounds has been donated  and he has received 35000 birthday cards. (It was my 70th last Friday I probably got 6)
 
He has contributed to a song "You will never walk alone" and it looks like being Number 1 in the charts next Sunday
 
Also - This is a parody of the 1970 David Bowie hit Major Tom.
 
Really worth a watch   - bet it brings a tear to your eye 
 
It is a huge daily story here 
 
We are also trying to track down the 1925  Scott, water cooled 2 stroke 500 cc motor cycle he used to race
 
Kind Regards



Richard
Richard,

What a great story, this guy is amazing! I can see why it’s a big story and why he’s raised so much money.

Thanks for sending.

John
4-22-2020


Hi Autoline Team,
 
I can't help but notice that you guys are giving an usual amount of attention to the history of Skoda, a brand that few Americans even know, and as far as I'm aware was never offered in the USA. 
 
...almost like you're establishing a heritage for a future introduction in America.
 
Could it be??
 
Best regards,
Phil
Phil,

You’re right Skoda has never sold cars in the US market. But we cover the global industry. And we found these old Skodas to be fascinating.

John McElroy
4-22-2020


John – I have been a loyal viewer of your program and enjoyed some of your programs more than others but glad you do it. However yesterday’s program which was probably a rerun about women in the automotive industry I just thought was rancid. Your assumption that women should leave the home and devote themselves to business making money and becoming a big shot I find despicable. And your other assumption was that of course everyone agrees with you – which we do not because some of us have higher priorities than that. I don’t suppose this email will have much affect on your leanings in the future but you need to know there are more important things in our short life here on earth.  

Wishing you only good-
Tom
4-20-2020


John

I just got to sit and watch this episode (How the Heck will we Repair these Newfangled Cars?). To me ADAS is a great expense without as great a benefit as touted. 

First off I think it is making people be poorer and less responsible drivers because they think the car should take care of them and they don’t have to pay as much attention.

Secondly I think it is driving the price of vehicles up as well as repair costs. Listening to the episode and hearing you may have to have a recalibration done just to change a wiper arm. That’s just ridiculous. 
Is it really all going to save the insurance industry enough that it doesn’t drive your rates up. I live in rural southern Missouri and the pay scale here isn’t great. I can see a lot of these systems not being repaired because many around here only carry only liability and lots of vehicles around here never get minor damage fixed.
Seems like it’s to benefit the insurance and parts manufacturers more than anything.

Maybe if we get totally autonomous vehicles the systems will be ok if we have zero wrecks but I think that’s a long ways off. That and the electronics on vehicles seem to be some of the least reliable parts.

Joe
Joe,

Thanks for the feedback and the dose of reality!

John McElroy
4-20-2020


HI John - As a 40 year Tooling person we could look at this well done and informative interview as depressing for our tooling industry, or we can understand as I do, that the goal to sustainability must be BEST PRACTICES, for our USA Tooling shops to be the lead for business from our own USA OEM's and Tier 1's 
 
I have been fortunate to be part of a "first of it's kind" collaboration in Detroit, of Global independent companies, who agreed to co locate their equipment and technical people in the same facility, working together onsite for the advancement of new technologies that improve Efficiencies, Quality, & Profitability in our USA manufacturing world.  
 
Laurie's Points were actually motivating to me personally because we see the advancement in all manufacturing cells to improve profitability thru reducing costs in the production of the parts but we don't look close enough at labor intensive activities on the tool shop floor that could POSSIBLY improve our quality, costs and competitiveness. 
 
Our First facility was a dream 10 years ago with Ford leading the request -
It is a production  demonstration and validation center that All Oem's and Tier 1's visit or use to develop new technologies - Approx 8 independent companies collaborating 
 
Our Second Facility Just opened Jan 1 mile from the Demonstration and Validation center - is Advanced Tooling / Advanced Machining and 3 D Printing &  Additive Manufacturing of metal and plastic -  These to are also independent companies that have agreed to participate, thru their own investments, to be a part of the Circle to develop new technologies. Then demonstrate and validate - new technologies to the industry for the launch into mainstream 
 
One of those Technologies Laurie touched on, (Tooling specific) is CNC Machining and programming .  Today we are launching the first Self Programming CNC Machines in the USA / Canada & Mexico -  What makes us unique is we are not Machine Dealers, but we have developed and built a machine thru the collaboration of companies -   This is very rewarding to the collaboration to see these efforts actually launching into the mainstream -  
 
Great Article -and good to hear that increased efficiencies or BEST PRACTICES is recognized and must be the goal for USA tool shops - Just like it is in high volume production manufacturing -
 
We will keep pushing those goals 
Kevin Foley 
SAE - Shinwon USA / YJSMT USA  
Kevin,

Thanks for sharing this with us. We’ll publish it in Viewer Mail on our website so others can read it too.

It’s great to hear what you’re doing.

Best,
John McElroy
4-20-2020


Hello to the VOICE of Detroit,



John just a note to you and your gang that a retired Ford engineer (very sad time for my alma mater) gets the warm fuzzes everyThursday listening to my favorite Podcast!

For those who remember what Gasohol is rather than just plane old Gasoline as it is known as today. Would it even be worth while for you to have a discussion on why with Americas new petroleum independence due to fracking are we still reducing a vehicles range and potential for increased performance by adding Alcohol to Gasoline? My uninformed guess is that simply put there are more consituents i.e. Farmers that grow corn than Petroleum producers who vote (Farm lobbyists vs Big Oil). But as always I’m ready to be schooled by someone more knowledgeable.         



Thanks from a MotorCity Fan Boy,

James
James,

Thanks for writing and for the suggestion. We probably won’t get to the topic tomorrow, but I’ve got it on the list for a future show.

Best,

John McElroy

Send us your thoughts: viewermail@autoline.tv