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2-25-2021


Your Autoline TV promo on 'Daily' spurred my thinking where you showed the manufacturing process.
 
I am curious about who makes and the from where of the manufacturing robots and machinery.  The automation machinery of the battery making is fascinating imagery, and further explanations of the manufacturing machinery design would be enlightening and inspiring.
Perhaps the operational components of 'the line' could be discussed as a format for the program.
 
Also, when pictures of new plants are shown with such news, these new plants appear to be on virgin land rather than in former industrial areas or 'brown fields'.  Why is that permitted?  Ah, don't tell me, tax breaks, low tax jurisdictions.  It seems destructive however.
 
I passed along a promotion for a CCS design competition for high schoolers you publicized a few years ago to a local art teacher for her to share with her students assuming that they were not all destined for law.
One of her students followed up and may have enrolled there.  Being in an area of no manufacturing does not spur young minds to such dreams.
 
r work
 
ps:  I think the reason Mazda does not flourish is because their models are too tight on passenger space.  Plain and simple.
r,

Good suggestion about covering who makes robots and manufacturing equipment.

OEMs like greenfield sites for a variety of reasons, but you’re generally right: tax abatements and incentives. These days you don’t see the Detroit 3 going greenfield, they generally update their existing facilities. it’s usually foreign automakers who go the greenfield route.

Interesting observation about interior room in Mazdas. I’m going to have to run and look at interior specs!

John McElroy
2-25-2021


OH MY GOODNESS! What is going on in the auto industry? I am not a fan of this LED lighting trend on SUV's. It all started with the Jeep Cherokee and now EVERYONE is doing it. A sliver of lights on top, a pod of lights below and maybe some more on the lower fascia. In this episode the Hyundai Kona and the Mitsubishi Outlander have it. Pick just about any SUV on the market today; Nissan Rogue, Hyundai Santa Fe, Chevy Trailblazer. Even BMW iX and Cadillac XT6 have something similar. These exterior designers have lost their creativity. It's getting monotonous.
 
Best regards,
D. A.
Well, fashions come and fashions go. Look what Hyundai did with the new Ionic 5 versus the old model. We think the “sliver above a pod” look has probably run its course.
2-25-2021


With auto makers turning their focus to be full electric in the near future raises some questions.
1.       What does it mean for ICE’s?  Are they on the endangered species list, soon to be extinct or even illegal? Reminiscent of the movie The Last Chase.
2.       What does it mean for auto parts stores and repair shops (Pep Boys, Midas, and Jiffy Lube)? No oil changes, tune ups, coolant flushes or mufflers to replace.  Maybe brake, tire and shock changes if dealerships don't corner the market(s) for themselves because maintenance will be slow for them too.
3.       What does it mean for auto racing? Formula 1 has taken the initiative to start Formula E.  I see IMSA Green, how will it affect the 24 hour races? Will they be cut down to 12, 6 or 4 hours due to battery range? Maybe it will push Manufactures/Teams to develop a quick charge or quick change battery which would be beneficial to the industry and perhaps have universal batteries. Same for NASCAR, they’re going Hybrid first, but all electric will eventually have to come into play? I don’t know how fans will take it. No roar of V8, just the whine of an electric motor and gears. Poor NHRA (I like NHRA, I use to race) I haven’t heard anything of them converting even though Don Garlits has been advocating for change. He’s been experimenting with an electric dragster.

Maybe one of these if not all you can discuss on Autoline After Hours.
 
Best Regards,

D. A.

Caledon, ON Canada
DA,

Good questions. I’ll forward this on to Gary to consider for a show.

Thanks,
John McElroy
2-25-2021


During the February 15th broadcast, Sean outlined why he thought gas prices were rising.  Although his points may have an effect, he left out the most important causes. 
 
Simply, the overt hostility toward fossil fuels by the Biden administration. i.e. Shutting down the XL pipeline, ceasing federal land exploration, anti-fracking stance, talk of raising the highway tax, cozying up to Iran again and that's just for starters. 
 
I highly doubt we'll see any decrease in gas prices soon.  I suspect we will soon be revisiting $4 and $5 dollars a gallon reminiscent of the Obama years. Not good.
 
Stevo
New York
Sorry Stevo, but you’re wrong. Oil prices are going up around the world, not just in the US. Brent prices are higher than WTI.

You seem to forget that oil prices started going up during the Bush Administration and started coming down during the Obama Administration. But neither Bush nor Obama had anything to do with it.

As demand for oil crashed because of he pandemic, frackers had to cap wells. They have a hard time making any money below $60 a barrel. Now that prices have hit that point they’ll uncap those wells and start producing again.

Don’t let your politics cloud your understanding of how the oil market works.

John McElroy
2-19-2021


FCVs are really slow. The Mirai 0-60 is like 9 seconds. That's pitiful.
I mean the slowest Tesla does it about 5.5 seconds 0-60. So there really is no comparison considering that particular metric.
LB,

FCVs don’t have to be slow. They are electric cars after all. The problem with the Mirai is that Toyota stuck a modest electric motor in it, only 128 kW, or 171 hp. A standard Tesla Model 3 comes with a 211 kW motor, or 283 hp.
2-19-2021


EV vs. Gas or diesel

How long when towing a 6 to 8000lb. trailer before the EV needs re- charging? It doesn't make sense to sit for hours to recharge. If at home watch my electric bill sky rocket.
The EVs that are out now are not capable of towing an 8,000 pound trailer. But that will change when GM, Ford, Rivian, Workhorse and Tesla come out with their electric pickups.

And while your home electric bill will go up, electricity is cheaper than gasoline, so you would probably save around $60 for every 1,000 miles you drive every year. A typical EV owner will save around $3,000 over 5 years of ownership just in the cost of electricity.
2-19-2021


Hi Guys,
 
Congratulations on the shows you do.
You have probably heard of autonomous haulage trucks in iron ore mining in Australia.
You might be interested to learn of another development in autonomous vehicles in the Australian mining industry, this time in light vehicles. This has just been announced by Australia’s third-largest iron ore producer Fortescue Metals Group.
 
Cheers
Dallas, Australia
Dallas,

Thanks for sending, we hadn’t seen this, much appreciated.

John McElroy
2-19-2021


I noted that the current session of the legislature has taken up the issue of EV charging stations and is proposing an additional registration fee for EV due to the loss of fuel tax revenue.
 
Skip that! The SAE just passed its new standard SAE J2954 for wireless charging or inductive charging.
 
The standard allows the possibility of dynamic charging. That is embedding coils in the roadway that charge the vehicle as they drive. Below is a short video showing how it works.
 
ElectReon - Dynamic wireless charging

The same car receiver with allow charging at home simply by parking over a charging pad,
 
Advantages:
 
It will reduce the on-board battery requirements. Tesla just announced the battery size in the base Tesla Semi at 250 kwh and people were disappointed at the range. With dynamic charging in place, an autonomous semi-truck would operate 24/7 with the only downtime being loading, unloading, maintenance, and safety checks.
 
Smaller batteries will lower vehicle cost, reduce range anxiety, and with lower operating cost EV adoption by the general public, commercial interest and government should accelerate.
 
Battery and energy storage technology still need more advancement and time to mature. And the US is not the leader. EVs with large batteries are not carbon neutral with internal combustion vehicles for many miles of driving due to the process of making batteries.
 
For government it will become the revenue alternative to fuel tax.
 
Roads can become intelligent and work in harmony with new safety system, even assisting in disasters like hurricane evacuations.
 
Tesla, Texas, I-10, and West Texas wind power, a match made in
 
Dynamically ChargingTexas!!
 
If I am not part of the solution, I am part of the problem.
 
James - Gonzales Texas
 
I drove EV1, it was inductively charged.
James,

We appreciate your enthusiasm for in-road charging, but we see lots of hurdles to overcome, both technical and financial.

This may be do-able, but not any time soon. Look at the effort going into making 3D maps of US roads for autonomous cars. It’s taking years to make those maps, and all it takes is a lidar-equipped car to drive on those roads. Now imagine the time and money it will take to rip up those roads and embed them with inductive chargers. It will take a massive investment and decades of work. The Big Question: who will pay for it?

Meanwhile EV batteries will become a lot cheaper and lighter.

We’ll keep an eye on this technology and how it develops. But other than some demonstration programs, we don’t see it going anywhere any time soon.

John McElroy
2-19-2021


Dear auto line,



I just bought a 2021 Toyota Rav 4 along with the extended warranty for eight years. Is it worth my while to keep the extended warranty or not?

Gail
Gail,

Toyota has the best reliability in the business. An extended warranty is good for peace of mind, but you probably will never need it.
2-12-2021


Hi John,



I have been considering getting an EV for many years but what bothers me is the very poor  approach of EV manufacturers on educating  drivers and first responders about  accident scenarios with these vehicles.

I don’t believe that in an emergency there would be enough time to call or text the manufacturer about  solutions  how to safely remove an occupant of an EV.



It would be great if one of your shows could take on the subject of EV- crashes,  first responder education and their thoughts when responding to an EV emergency.



Thanks again for the great show AAH#539.



Best regards,



Martin
Martin,

Automakers have worked with first responders since the first hybrids appeared over 20 years ago on how to safety deal with these cars after an accident.

The National Fire Protection Association has published a ton of info on safely dealing with EVs that is quickly available online. Tesla, for example, has an app that first responders can download.

Best,
John McElroy
2-12-2021


Australian market different to USA but at the same time similar

The big selling trucks might be smaller, and some of the huge USA SUVs might not be sold here (Escalade never sold here and Grand Wagoneer will not be either), but the demise of mid-size sedans and diminished market share for small and light sedans and hatches follow a similar downward trend.
It’s amazing to see passenger sedans slowly fade out of existence. It’s happening all over the world. Last month in the US, only 22% of sales were pass cars, and we haven’t hit bottom yet.

John
2-8-2021


Worth watching to learn how the auto biz is going to change - Sandy runs his own co, in Auburn Hills - Leandesign - which analyzes all sorts of products, looking for ways to improve designs, lower costs, make more efficient, and it works.  John McElroy took me to Sandy's place  (thanks to son Karl who put me onto Sandy) last yr to talk about plastics in cars, and Sandy has done all sorts of teardown studies on the Tesla and all other EVs, and rates them.  This interview with Elon is interesting if you want to hear how Tesla is proceeding and how far self driving is going, and possibly how soon it'll be all over the place - seems pretty ambitious at this point in time - but it sure looks like the next Tesla will be two huge singlepiece modified aluminum castings fastened to a flat structural battery tray/chassis - quite a step forward? Musk says they eliminate 300 robots by switching from 170 stampings on the Tesla rear end to the one casting incorporating them all.  Makes me wonder how many more assembly plant jobs might be lost going this route, but it does make sense.  And now new co's are 3D printing whole houses using a mix of specialized concrete. Wonder what the world will look like in another 20 yrs - 
 
Ken
2-8-2021


Good afternoon gentlemen,

I just read a story about Ford's announcement that they are doubling their development budget for EVs.  Mr. Farley included a slight jab at GM with his remark, "People are responding to what Ford is doing today, not someday."

This got me to thinking about which domestic OEM has been the most successful at electrification so far.  So, that includes BEVs and Plug In Hybrids.   At first I thought of GM, with the Volt, the Bolt and a few eAssist mild hybrid models at Chevy and Buick (Malibu and LaCrosse).  I'm going to forget about the expensive and trouble-prone transmission-based "two-mode hybrids" that Chevy, GMC and Cadillac sold in 2009.  Am I missing any?

But, then I thought about Ford.  While the Mach E has just launched, they have been pretty successful at selling plug in hybrids for quite a few years now.  The Lincoln MKZ and the Ford Fusion hybrid and plug in hybrid models sold quite well, especially once they adjusted the pricing so that it was only a small step up to get the hybrid powertrain.  I believe in the last couple of years, the hybrid version was available at no additional cost (though I could be mistaken on that).   And the Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner hybrids were pretty good sellers for a number of years.  And now Ford offers a hybrid model of the Explorer, the new Escape, and the Lincoln Aviator and Corsair.

And then there is the new F-150 with the hybrid powertrain, which Ford surprisingly offers on all trim levels, instead of making it its own trim level.  They will likely sell quite a few of those. A lot of extra oomph for the money.

And, while I like the Chrysler Pacifica hybrid, and tip my cap to them for coming out with a plug in hybrid powertrain in a vehicle type that no one else had at that time, and one that could really benefit from it as minivans are great but not great on gas, I can't really call them a competitor in this contest.  Not even when you add in the 2009 Dodge Durango Hybrid and the 2009 Chrysler Aspen Hybrid, which cumulatively sold less than 100 units, I believe.

So, how do you judge the winner?  Total hybrid sales for each OEM? Largest offering of hybrid models?   I'm not sure.  I leave that up to you guys.

I just thought it was an interesting comparison between the two main domestic rivals.   It could become a trivia question on a slow news day on Autoline Daily.

Cheers!

GM Veteran
GM Veteran

Good feedback. And you're really going to start an argument amongst us!

John McElroy
2-3-2021


Hello John,
  I'm envious of you and your team covering the news of the automotive industry at this period of time. No longer are you reporting on the latest  landau roof color change from GM, LOL.
  To me this moment in automotive history seems similar to the auto industry in the early 20th century when there were a large number of manufactures and multiple propulsion systems all competing for dominance. Heck there was even a global pandemic at that time too.  Thanks for keeping automotive geeks like me informed of the HUGE!! disruptions coming.
 
 Say hello to Henry Payne for me. I really respect his insight , and yours about the auto industry. Henry and I are both Vintage racers with the SVRA.  
 
BTW, the more you can have Peter D. and David W. on your shows the better.
 
Tom,    New Orleans
Tom,

Thanks for your letter, good feedback. You’re right, this is the most exciting time in the auto industry in over 100 years.

I’ll let Henry know you said hello.

John McElroy
2-3-2021


Really love your show, but your segment with Dan Greene was a snooze — I think Tueor’s technology is utterly obvious.  A better show would have been to have Dan paired up with a current technology maven from Magna, or a technology guy/gal from within the industry.



You and your team (as much as I love you guys!) just don’t have the software and network knowledge to push back on Dan.



Chris
2-3-2021


I love the show.
 
You guys should look into blackberry's involvement in the auto industry.
Brent,
 
We’re very familiar with what Blackberry is doing in the auto industry. You may want to check out this show we did with one of their executives last month.
 
Best,
John McElroy
2-3-2021


Hello Mr. McElroy, How Are You Sir??? Great Show today!!!  Although I'm pretty computer illiterate, it sure sounds to me like those guys from TUEOR have found a breakthrough in anti computer hacking!!!  But I was also interested in the way they can use their systems in removing and simplifying the ever increasingly complicated auto wiring harnesses every car uses.  Is this the so-called "Multiplexing" wiring system I've been reading about for the last 10 years???  Always good to see Henry Payne on your show; he's a very smart guy, and I always enjoy hearing his real life experiences owning a Tesla Model 3 ( you think he'll trade it in on a model with a Heat Pump??? ).  Yes, Mr. MaC, it's a little shocking to hear that gm's killing off ICE engines in its cars COMPLETELY by 2035, but the way things are going lately, it might even happen sooner!!! (do you think other Auto Cos. will now make the same commitment??? ) I think one of gm's motives is to be seen as an electric vehicle company only, like Tesla, to help raise their Ebit value; and I wonder if gm had inside info about the Biden Federal EV vehicle replacement program, especially since they announced their all EV BrightDrop Van subsidiary just a few days earlier, which will probably be assembled in one of gm's American plants, with UAW workers???  COINCIDENCE????   THANKS FOR READING THIS MR. MaC. STAY SAFE!!!    Chas, Plainville, Ct.
Chas,

Great feedback, thanks for sending your thoughts.

The way I understand it, the Tueor system is different from the multiplexing systems in today’s cars. But we need to learn more about it.

I agree with you comments on GM, BTW.

All the best,
John McElroy
2-3-2021


Tesla stock was at $45 for 3 years and then a year ago it started up and is now at $835. They're worth three times Toyota (second most valuable) and more than Toyota, VW, Mercedes, GM, Ferrari, BMW and Honda COMBINED!

What do you think about the future of their value and the prospect of shorting their stock?
 
I love After Hours and have been listening since you used to talk performance and not autonomy and electric cars. I think I enjoy it more now.

Do you still have the Citroen?

cheers

Charles
Charles,

Yep, still have the DS!

Shorting Tesla is a tricky situation. The company’s sales and revenue should increase dramatically this year, and that will likely propel the stock forward.

However…..two things to be on the lookout for: EU sales and FSD delivery.

Last year Tesla’s sales went down in Europe while the entire EV segment grew fast. I expected Tesla to lose market share as new entrants came into the market, but I did not expect it to lose sales—not with the segment expanding. If Tesla continue to post weak sales in Europe that could trigger a downward correction, presenting an opportunity to short the stock.

And then there’s FSD. It’s at least a year behind schedule and if it doesn’t deliver on full autonomy, that will call into question one of the major narratives that’s driven Tesla’s market cap so high. Tesla has already booked a bunch of deposits (now $10,000 per!) and Elon said owners would be able to earn $30,000/year by putting their FSD equipped cars into Tesla’s robotaxi fleet. If that doesn’t materialize it will be a costly embarrassment that will likely trigger a correction.

I don’t own any Tesla stock or options and never have. So you should take my analysis with a grain of salt. Also, keep in mind that many investors who shorted the stock got slaughtered. But savvy investors know how to make money on stocks, whether they go up or down.

John McElroy
1-29-2021


Hi everyone,

Quick question, can Stellantis legitimately differentiate all of its 14 brands from one another and make Alfa Romeo profitable?

Best,

Alexander
Stellantis has too many brands. It will cost the company a fortune to maintain them. FCA spent a fortune on Alfa and Maserati and has not made a dime on that investment. But Italian and French pride will probably protect the French and Italian brands. Opel, Vauxhall, Chrysler and Dodge are probably in trouble.

John McElroy
1-29-2021


To whom it may concern,
What is the potential impact to an EV from an electronic pulse weapon or even solar flares?
 
Thanks,
Alex
Alex,

An pulse bomb or (major) solar flare would affect an EV the same way it would affect an ICE vehicle. It would fry all of the electronics and render it inoperable.

John McElroy
1-29-2021


I'm not sure if other viewers feel the same, but I'd love it if the Autoline crew recommended things to read now and then. Classics about the auto industry would be just as appreciated as new releases. 
 
Thanks!
Scott,

Good idea. Thanks for the suggestion.

We may run out of book title to recommend rather quickly, but we can crowd source suggestions, too.

Best,
John McElroy
1-29-2021


I enjoyed the substantial Ford article/electrification article which appeared in this morning's Freep a great deal, John.  It was good to come to understand Phoebe Howard's take on the industry's move towards e-vehicles.  It was similarly good to read your emphatic view that those who fail to make the leap will end up out of business.
 
Accepting the wisdom of such an industry change, however, doesn't answer a singular mystery surrounding the change.  I am baffled trying to glean how supporting infrastructure will be put in place.  
 
Will most EVs need to be charged via plug?  If so, who will be responsible for placing charging stations strategically....and paying for them?  And isn't the charge for today's EVs a time-consuming process?  It's not as if you pull up to a pump and need only 5 minutes to pump your 14 gallons....  How will getting needy EV drivers in and out timely be handled? 
 
You can see from my sputtering and stammering, John, that I'm clueless about this missing puzzle piece.  When time permits, kindly wipe away some of the mists of confusion with/in which I labor! 
 
Best,
 
Mike
Mike,

The EV charging infrastructure is getting built as we speak. It’s largely invisible to everyone who doesn’t own an electric car. Part of it is being paid for by a $3 billion settlement with VW over its diesel emissions cheating. Tesla, of course, has built its own. Michigan, for example, is getting nearly $65 million over 9 years from that settlement.

Fast chargers are still not as fast as a gas pump. It recently took me 45 minutes to get a Mustang Mach E up to 80% charge with a 350 kWh charger, which is about the fastest you can find across the country right now.

EVs are not for everyone. They are not as convenient to use. But that should change. And their other attributes—quiet, smooth, fast, and economical—will attract more customers over time.

John
1-22-2021


Dear Mr. McElroy,



I understand where you are coming from re: winter range loss but you simply do not understand EV ownership. I have had my Chevy Bolt for 2 1/2 years and have put 47 000 km (about 29 000 miles) on it. I have charged away from home about 12 times and that is all. I commute 45 miles each way to work so even a 50% range loss wouldn’t bother me. My actual range loss is about 35-40% but that is mainly due to GM using a resistive heater instead of a heat pump. It has been an awesome car and as my other two cars wear out, any potential replacement will only be a BEV. Once you drive electric, you don’t go back (maybe won’t get another GM unless they step-up their game).



ICE vehicles will have a role to play for years to come and if I have to haul a big load over a longer distance in a shorter period of time then I’ll just rent something for the weekend. BTW, that rental will essentially be free because of the money I saved owning the Bolt.. My previous daily car, a Volvo S60R (love it, still have it), used about 10 L/ 100 km of premium gas at about $1.30/ L. So in 2 1/2 years I have saved about $ 6110 in fuel and no maintenance except for the tire rotations and caliper service I did in my driveway.



Let’s face it, people don’t like change, especially when it involves something they are unfamiliar with. I sometimes miss the roar and still miss the involvement of a manual so maybe I’ll keep the Volvo around for a monthly afternoon drive; that too will fade though.
Face it, ICE is dead as mass transportation goes. After only 10 years, look at how good BEVs are and they’re just beginning.



I’m not an EV zealot and hope I didn’t come across as one (though I DO despise ICE’ing of chargers by ignoramuses) but I think that people are anti-EV because they simply don’t understand how they can have their cake and eat it too.



Thank you for your time; stay safe and healthy.



Sincerely,


Mark
Elora, Ontario
Mark,

Great feedback, thanks for sending.

I too like EVs and am willing to put up with some inconveniences because they deliver a better overall driving experience. But most people will recoil in horror when they see the kind of range drop they could encounter in winter weather. No doubt this issue will get resolved, but for now I think it’s an impediment for people who live in cold climates and are considering an EV.

Best,
John McElroy
1-22-2021


*RESPONSE TO MESSAGE ABOVE*

John,
 
I hardly ever comment on anything and I thank you for responding, but your response indicates that I didn’t express myself as well as I should have. You STILL say that the range drop matters whereas I was trying to get across that the range drop doesn’t matter as long as you plan for it AND beca,use EVs are in their infancy. Again, I feel constrained by my lack of ability to be persuasive. If you have enough range for your daily needs, a 50%range drop doesn’t matter as long as you still have enough.
 
I suppose my biggest point is that people are going to bury their heads in the sand until it’s too late. I strongly encourage that you, as an “influencer” in a way, slowly try to nudge people  into a different way of thinking regarding personal transportation; something that is more sustainable AND cheaper for them. Maybe someone likes to go hunting in the fall and “needs” an off-road pick-up truck BUT they commute 5 days a week and go through $100 of gas a week because all they do is haul air most of the time in a big truck. Well, they could drive an EV most of the time and then rent what they needed, when they needed it and be ahead financially at the end of the year because they didn’t spend their money on gas or oil changes
 
I think that one of the problems is that eco-thinking has been politicized recently. When I am confronted by someone for driving a Bolt (yes it happens), I retreat and say that I don’t give a frig about the environment but look at all the money I saved!!!!! That always shuts them up; well, sometimes.
 
Anyways, in the end, I have no problem living with my Bolt in the winter.
 
Best regards,
 
Mark
Mark,

People who buy big pickups and SUVs are not going to be swayed to buy EVs simply to save money. They’ll buy them when they think they’re cool and badass. You watch, that Hummer EV will be a hit.

If people were accepting of limited range, then sales of the 1st gen Nissan Leaf would have skyrocketed. It didn’t happen. People don’t buy cars that they perceive to limit them, and they won’t change their daily habits to accommodate them. You and I will, but most won’t.

Years ago I had dinner with the comptroller of Renault. He asked me why Americans buy so many pickups. I talked about the cowboy spirit and the rugged appeal of pickups. He said, “I’ve heard that all before, why do Americans buy so many?” So I told him, “If you go into the kitchen in any American home you’ll see an oven that is 2 feet wide, 2 feet tall and 2 feet deep. We don’t need an oven than large except at Christmas or Thanksgiving when we cook a big turkey for the whole family. The rest of the year we don’t need it, but we want it for that one day a year which is so important to us. It’s the same with pickups. We don’t need them most of the time, but we want them when we need them, and we can afford it.”

He said, “Thank you very much, now I understand.”

Enjoy your Bolt. It’s a great car.

John
1-22-2021


Hello John,
 
 I think the USA range of State and Federal gas tax payed at the pump is about 25%-50% of the wholesale price of fuel. When an EV charges at a public charging station are road use taxes collected?
 
I think some States are now charging EV owners an annual road use fee not based on miles driven.
 
All I know is as EV adoption increases "The Man" will want his money and the cost to drive an EV will go up some.
 
How is Europe with sky high fuel taxes going to replace that revenue as EV use grows?
 
Tom, New Orleans
Tom,

The outcome is entirely predictable. Governments need tax revenue to maintain roads. At a point in the not too distant future they will simply add some kind of charge to EV owners.

John McElroy
1-22-2021


What’s the deal with this woman from GM? For the whole show she talked about the same kind of general stick PBS talks about every day on the news and nothing about the car in the street. Where are the car industry? If i want to listen to an update on the news or someone’s analysis of how the economy is going to get back to where it was I’ll look elsewhere. I’m watching the show because it’s about automobiles and automobile development in the industry, so don’t book her back again out. David
Almost every year for the last two decades we have always invited the chief economists from the car companies to come on our show and give their outlook for the industry. If you think they’re not worth listening to, then you’re missing out on great insight. The auto industry is about a lot more than cars and car development. And at Autoline we will always cover all aspects of the industry.

John McElroy
1-22-2021


Happy Friday John and Sean,

Reading that the Stellantis merger that will be finalized tomorrow, and seeing a couple of stories about a possible re-think on bringing Peugeot back to the US market, got me to pondering.

With all of the FCA mainstream brands being sold here, they really don't need to add another one to the mix.  However, it also occurs to me that FCA does not really have a volume luxury brand in their stable, as GM and Ford do.  I don't count Alfa Romeo since it has not been very successful and is so highly focused on being a performance brand. Maserati will always sell in relatively low volume because of the price points their vehicles occupy.

So my GM Veteran Insight is that bringing the DS luxury brand to the US market might be a good idea.  Why?

1. It would provide a fresh brand in the luxury market, offering something different to American buyers: the French take on luxury.  It could be a nice counterpoint to the German take on luxury, which we have a lot of.

2. The DS brand is still finding its feet in Europe.  Any incremental volume sold here would certainly help their overall business case.

3. If Stellantis decided to offer it as a replacement brand to Fiat dealers, it would provide DS with an instant body of standalone dealerships, located in the urban volume markets they need to be in.

4. The DS line is not large, but its quite fresh and most likely will meet US standards with very little modification, since it seems to me that the US and Euro safety and emissions standards have been mostly unified over the last ten years or so.  Europe's emission standards may be tougher now, but that probably won't be the case much longer and it won't inhibit sales here.

5. No conflict with existing FCA brands sold here.  Since there would be no real overlap with current FCA brands, and it would give a lifeline to those FCA dealers that gambled on the return of Fiat, this would seem to be a solution that their existing dealer body would not object to.

There are probably more benefits to this idea, and undoubtedly a number of challenges that I have not thought of, but the overall concept seems worthy of consideration.

So, next time you are on the phone with Mike Manley . . .

GM Veteran
Intriguing ideas. We will definitely publish this in Viewer Mail.

John McElroy
1-15-2021


Hi John
Great show tonight as always, and always great to hear Sandy Monroe again.
To the point you were making about range loss on a BEV in cold weather which Sandy thought might be less than you think.
I have been running a full electric BEV as a daily driver for nearly a year now ( Renault Zoe R135 GT )
and the spec range on the model is 245 miles, but I had some nice alloys fitted instead of the aero wheels and have the larger motor ( just a tad heavier ) so my listed range from Renault was quoted as 238 miles.
Over the summer in warm weather conditions I can easily get 245-250 range if I use it in the highest regen mode.
In winter ( yesterday was -3c / 26f )  I loose 10 percent range if I preheat the car from my phone and maybe 15 percent if I drive straight from cold and only do short runs, on longer runs from cold it is 10 percent loss.
Rain or wet roads also effect range ( lack of torque getting to the road ) I loose about 10 percent range if the road is slippery.
And yes  when it is cold and slippery  ( ice or snow ) you can loose 20 percent range, but then again I most likely used to get very poor mpg in the Audi on ice and snow but had great fun.
 
Keep yourself and family safe in these difficult times.
 
All the best for 2021 and keep the shows coming
 
Ray Woodbridge
Ray,

Great feedback and thanks for sharing. Your experience with the Zoe is very different from my experiences with BEVs (Chevrolet Bolt, Nissan Leaf, Mach E, etc) and PHEVs (Chevrolet Volt, Ford C-Max) in cold weather. I’d say they lose 30% range when the temperature is 33 degrees F and about 50% at 20 degrees F. That’s with no pre-heating of the cabin.

Clearly we need a lot more data on this.

Best,
John McElroy
1-13-2021


Hey John, 
I watched your interview with Sherif Marakby of MAGNA talking about electric pickup trucks. Pick up trucks?  We have SUV's, CUV's isn't about time we come up with a better way to talk about pickup trucks?  I have an idea, how about PUT's?
 
Thanks and I always enjoy your shows.
Ken M, Colorado.
Ken,

Years ago Mitsubishi had a pickup truck called the PUP. Some data houses even used PUP to describe the category. But the term never caught on.

John McElroy
1-13-2021


Since Stellantis has no plans to create Chrysler products and FCA technically no longer exists, what is the possibility of the Chrysler brand being sold off like Volvo was?
 
Sincerely,
 
Vincent
Vincent,

The Volvo brand wasn’t sold off, the entire Volvo car company was sold to Geely.

Chrysler, as a brand, may not have a lot of equity. Certainly not outside of the US market. And Stellantis is not going to sell off hard assets like assembly plants.

Let’s see what happens. I still think it would make sense for Stellantis to rebuild the Chrysler and Dodge brands using rebadged Peugeots.

John McElroy
1-13-2021


Merry Christmas, Autoline Crew!!!
 
I was thinking today of all the driver assistance and warning systems I've used. Some gently chirp. Others show amber lights in the side mirrors. My XC-40 vibrates the steering wheel. 
 
But my question is, "Why don't ADAS systems sound the horn if the car is about to hit something?". If I was changing lanes and about to crash into somebody in the blind spot, I want my car to get my attention, and not in a subtle way.
 
Thanks and Happy Holidays to all the Autoline staff.
 
Scott from Asheville
1-13-2021


You've recently added the hottest stocks in automotive as a recurring segment on the show, which is an interesting add, but I do have a slight beef with it.  You called out Hyliion for it's consecutive double digit gains, but that's after it's down over 50% from its original price last year.  It's also down a few points again from when the show aired.
 
The stock market is volatile and doesn't always reflect the actual situation on the ground, so while I think it's interesting to have a segment calling out the stocks, I think there should be a little more context, or maybe a little less frequent reporting of hot stocks.
 
On a side note, I really enjoy the work you guys do and think in general you do bring context into the conversation.  Keep up the great work.
 
David
1-13-2021


John/Sean,



I have been a loyal listener for quite a long time and have on occasion 
ran into John at one of the many NAIAS's I've attended over the many 
years. One of the little arithmetic problems that has bothered me has 
been the lack of attention focused on the USA's ability to not only 
produce but distribute the amount of electricity it would take to power 
even a small fraction of electric vehicles.

Given that as a light weight petroleum product, 
gasoline is primarily used to power automobiles and does not really have 
any other large scale use in the USA for transportation purposes and 
using the data I collected from public government websites, I applied 
just a few simple calculations. It appears that we would need over 30 
days production of electricity to equal one days of consumption of 
gasoline in the US. Now I completely understand that electric motors are 
at least twice as thermally efficient as the typical, state of the art 
ICE, but most of the other adverse impacts to efficiency, such as 
rolling resistance and drag are the same for an electric vehicle as one 
powered by an ICE.



So, check my math and see if I missed something, but if this is correct, 
then the biggest impact to the adoption of electric cars is not charging 
stations or range anxiety, it is the HUGE lack of ability for us to even 
generate and distribute a small fraction of electricity it would take to 
power a fleet of electric cars in the USA... just saying, let me know if 
I am totally out in left field on this...



Chris
1-13-2021


You guys cover too much EV news! I love the show, but I am not going to buy an EV anytime soon. Can you guys talk more about the free market and how people really want ICEs? How about doing a piece on Ford's Godzilla engine or see if there is any confirmation on Ford's 6.8 V8! The gentleman from Volvo saying that an outright ban on ICEs is needed to move EV technology along is very telling of what he thinks of the people that buy his vehicles. If EVs are such a good idea why do we need to ban other forms of drivetrain? 
  Thank you Duesenberg the thinker
1-13-2021


Bonjour Jean,
   I realise that new cars are very "clean", as far as air pollution is concerned, but the high number of vehicles on our roads, most are not new "clean" vehicles,  & add significantly to our poor air quality. All you do is go to Mexico, or other large cities, even here in tiny Ottawa(1 million), our air quality at rush hour, is poor. 
  Must be worst in Ca?
Bob,

You’re right. Studies show that cars which are 7 years old or older cause 80% of automotive-related pollution. But keep in mind that there are a lot more 7 year old cars on the road than new ones. Also, cars in the US and Canada have to meet emissions standards for 10 years, so even after a decade they are still in compliance. The catalytic converter removes 99% of all emissions once it’s warmed up (not including CO2).

And while there’s no denying that vehicles are a significant source of pollution, they continue to get cleaner as emissions regulations continue to get stricter.

John McElroy
1-11-2021


FANTASTIC SHOW. Great way to start a new year and very insightful. Thank you the Autoline team and the GM rep.
DLR
1-11-2021


...let me be the first to say...are they [GM] about to disappear?
A quote from TTAC puts it well:  GM considers this logo less severe, more human, and more approachable than the current one.
 
'Less severe', like NOT being too masculine? like NOT being a manufacturing power house?
I wonder how the Chinese character equivalents would look.
You’re not the only one who hates GM’s new logo. The reaction is overwhelmingly negative. But I’ll say this. Remember when GM spun off its components group and it was named Delphi? People hated the name. When Visteon came about they hated that name even more. People told me they thought these names would hurt those companies. Today no one gives those names a second thought and that’s what will happen with the new GM logo a year from now.

John McElroy
1-11-2021


  I'm watching a video, about how the oil people are expecting a change, due to EVs. They must have their heads in the sand, or just dumb.  They say it won't affect them until 2030, or 2040 ????
I think closer to 2025, or sooner. Look at Nokia, Kodak, etc.
Bob
Bob,

You’re not the only one who thinks that way. Bloomberg New Energy Finance predicts there will be an oil glut around 2025 thanks to EVs and more efficient ICEs. (BTW, it made that prediction several years ago.) I think Covid could move up that timeline as many businesses rethink requiring employees to come to the office everyday, or going on business trips.

$1 a gallon in 2030? Could happen.

John McElroy
1-11-2021


Hi,
This might be a topic to report on considering FCA and PSA just merged:
Tesla will have to find someone else in Europe to buy co2 credits from them because FIAT won't be.


FIAT merged with PSA to form Stellantis.

FIAT now have an electric 500 and can also offset against a large number of various Citroen, Peugeot, Opel and DS electric models from 2021 onward.




It this article from 2019 it says:
"It now appears as if FCA will indeed go ahead and buy CO2 credits worth €1.8bn from Tesla – at least in 2020."
then later says:

"The FT quotes chief executive Mike Manley saying that about 80 per cent of FCA’s CO2 compliance would come from purchasing credits from Tesla in 2020, falling to around 15 per cent in 2021 as the company’s sale of battery and hybrid vehicles grew."
If I read that right they buy 1.8bn of credits in 2020 and 337million in 2021 so that is €1.5bn less income for Tesla.
I'd be surprised if they even get 337 million as PSA are constraining supply of their EVs to cover their CO2 obligations. I'm waiting on a PSA EV where the waiting list is over 40 weeks. They'll build more and give Tesla as little money as possible.
Of course some of the regulatory credits are for the US but in the US both GM and Ford are pushing ahead with building enough EVs in coming years to fulfill their own requirements.  
Regards,
Geoff.
Geoff,

You make some great points. Tesla’s income from CO2 credits in the EU and ZEV credits in the US will drop off dramatically as traditional OEMS bring out more BEVs and PHEVs. But Tesla always knew this was going to happen. Hopefully, for it’s sake, it will be able to generate a profit without them, because right now it needs that income to be profitable.

John McElroy
1-11-2021


I have enjoyed your show for many months for auto news. However, I am very disappointed with your bias political introduction to today's show. Don't need your politics and will no longer be watching.
Sorry to see you go. But as events impact the automotive industry we will report them. When the CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers—a former Trump supporter—says he should resign, we’ll report that. When the Transportation Secretary resigns in disgust over what happened, we will report that.

If you perceive us reporting those facts to be political bias, so be it. But we will continue to report on developments that have a direct impact on the automotive industry.

John McElroy
1-8-2021


Hey Sean,
 
President Trump did NOT "incite a mob to attack the capital building"!!! Cut the CRAP!!! In fact Trump said JUST THE OPPOSITE!!
 
Very disappointed in AutoLine!!
Jeffrey
Jeffery,

It was the CEO of the National Manufacturers Association who called for the president to be removed from office for sedition. He was a former Trump supporter. It was not a flippant remark. There are 14,000 manufacturing companies that belong to that association, including automakers and suppliers.

You can be sure we’re going to report on developments as important as this.

John McElroy
1-8-2021


I listen to your video every day but today 1/7/2021 you started out talking about politics not the auto news🤔??
Who gives you the right to talk about removing Trump from office??  What is it with you people in the media playing politics? Stick to auto news, that’s what we watch you for. I am very disappointed and may not watch anymore. I quest you guys are also getting paid off by the radical left. 
Fred,

I guess you don’t like us reporting that the National Association of Manufacturers, with 14,000 manufacturing companies as members, including many automakers and automotive suppliers, called for the President to be removed. BTW, it was the CEO (a former Trump supporter) of the association who called for him to be removed.

Sorry, that story directly involves the auto industry and that’s why we included it in our coverage.

John McElroy
1-8-2021


First let me say calling reporter bias is pretty eastharsh but I really don't want to mislead you.
 
I've been listening to Autoline.tv shows for over two years.  For the most part I find it informative.  But there is this underlined tone of Pro-Ford / Anti-GM.  Please stop.
 
I get that John has been in the industry for most of his life, but he does tend to be unbalanced in his reporting.  The latest example was a report stating Ford has the most accurate EV mileage numbers.  Really?  Just Ford?  At least you also reported the Ford under it's new CEO was going to scrap plans to work with Mahindra (sp?) and invest in EV batttery technology to catch up with GM and BMW.  Again, all about the Ford.  Not how their stock is crap or the issues of sexual assault complaints at Ford.
 
I get it, rah rah rah for Ford.  Everyone wants to see Ford rebound but can you be more balanced in your reporting please?  I'd like to depend on you as a more reliable source if truth in the industry.
 
Thank you
I honestly don’t see how you can come to the conclusion that we are anti-GM.
 
First off: where do you get the idea that we said Ford has the most accurate EV mileage numbers? We’ve never said that. In fact, our most recent report showed how much the battery range in the Mach E drops off in cold weather.
 
And look at what you wrote, that Ford had to scrap a JV to “catch up with GM.” How does trying to catch up to GM come off as anti-GM? (Also we said Ford had to catch up to VW, not BMW).
 
Ford stock is crap? It’s up 2x since its low in March. GM is up 2.5 x from its low.
 
And sexual assault claims? Are you talking about the Chicago Assembly plant? That story is over 3 years old. We reported on it then.
 
Also, I just looked this up. Last year we had 9 executives from General Motors on our shows, and 6 from Ford. How does that show an anti-GM bias?
 
We welcome constructive criticism from our viewers but frankly this has me scratching my head.
 
John McElroy
1-8-2021


A problem with auto pilot disable is yes, will allow good old driving, but unfortunately, will allow good old human distraction & accidents will go up- etc.
Bob
1-8-2021


John, do we really need safer cars? I know there is more congestion on the highways than ever but how many nannies are really necessary. Do what we have available now prevent any accidents?  Yes of course. But it really seems like they are creating drivers that are dependent on them and pay less attention to what they are doing. It seems that going fully autonomous is the only answer if we go down this road.

I would really like to see it where we have more ,for lack of a better term, driver control systems. Thus phones that won’t work when going over ten mph, cameras that can tell if a driver has a book or similar in their hand reading or putting on makeup etc. and will produce an annoying warning till they pay attention.

Just feel like they are going for safety from the wrong end. 



Thanks for the show, it’s great.



Joe
Joe,

You’re on to something here. The Cadillac Super Cruise system has a camera that watches the driver’s eyes. And if the driver is not looking at the road, it gives several warnings and if the driver still isn’t paying attention it turns off. That same technology could be used in non-autonomous vehicles to disable the phone, turn off the radio, slow the car down, etc., until the driver starts paying attention to driving.

John McElroy
1-8-2021


John, in your interview earlier this year Trevor Milton strongly asserted the lower weight of a Fuel cell and hydrogen versus a Li battery pack for a class 8 long haul truck. He specifically pointed out that the addition weight of the Li battery would reduce the payload capacity - an unacceptable cost to fleet operators. The obvious assumption being that long haul truck loads are limited by weight. Think that assumption is flawed as is the basis for Nikola’s competitive advantage on long haul vs Li. The vast majority of of long haul freight is in fact capacity limited by volume not weight - in other words they cube out well before they weigh out. So hauling around say 4 - 6 thousand extra pounds of Li pack would not affect the profitability of most carriers with the exception of bulk fuel, grain or other similar commodities. Wish I had caught on to this earlier and shorted the stock. 



Cheers



Peter
Peter,

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

Best,

John McElroy
1-5-2021


From today Holden has disappeared from Australia apart from a few service and parts outlets.

I agree with most of this except Holden, and GM in Australia, had passed the point of no return.  Like a ugly marriage bust up, the relationship between Holden and the Australian public had passed the point of no return and nothing could save it.
 
Warwick Rex Dundas
Warwick,

This is sad to hear and definitely represents the end of a proud era.

Australia made a significant contribution to the automotive industry, but in today’s world it’s all about manufacturing scale and so the writing was on the wall.

John McElroy
1-5-2021


I think Tesla should do this. 
Why not buy a trailer company and then convert some to solar powered trailers, with panels on the roof and then a back-up of batteries, under the bed, so you could 
have extra juice, as the panels charge as the sun shines, so either on the road or sitting they would charge up the back-up battery.

I sent that to Tesla, though they probably already thought of something along those lines. I thought you might be interested.
Sounds like a good idea.

John McElroy
1-5-2021


I mentioned a while ago that Tesla was probably getting a technical infusion from Space X. I just saw an interview of Sandy Munro in which he's convinced Tesla's HVAC was designed with help from Space X. I knew it!:). I also think some of if not all of the electronics were of Space X origin. Afterall, if you already have some of the brightest people in the world (literally rocket scientists as the saying goes) working for you why not take advantage. It'll always be hard for anyone to compete with that braintrust. God bless and have a Great New Year. Mark
Love it!

John McElroy
1-5-2021


John,

A little correction to what you said on Autoline After Hours - AAH #537
.

In December 1963, Studebaker shuttered its South Bend plant, ending the production of its cars and trucks in the United States. The company's Hamilton, Ontario, facilities remained in operation until March 1966, when Studebaker shut its doors for the final time after 114 years in business.

Have a Merry Christmas!

Don Haney
You, sir, are completely correct!

Merry Christmas.

John McElroy
1-5-2021


Here is another piece that i am writing for you to publish in Viewer Mail:
I am highly contempt over all of the enormous changes taking place in the Automotive Industry now and in the following decade.
I feel that Internal Combustion engines should continue to be around alongside Hydrogen, Fuel Cell; and BEV Powertrains.
I also feel that Autonomous Vehicles should have an "Autopilot Disable" feature to allow actual good, old-fashioned driving of them.
I also feel that transactions for Automobiles should take physically take place with a Salesperson at a Dealership, and not in the Digital world and on the World Wide Web,
Matthew,

Thanks, this will definitely go into Viewer Mail.

John McElroy
12-21-2020


Hi John, I really enjoy your show and the variety of guests that you bring on.

Is any auto manufacturer considering battery replacement as a strategy rather than battery charging? Especially for long distance driving in an EV?

I can see the proliferation of charging stations as acceptable in urban areas and in commuting situations. But what if I want to drive my EV from Troy, Michigan where I live to my vacation property in the UP? Or to go on a long vacation drive (I’m retired) out west to all of the National Parks? I would not want to have the down time of waiting for a recharge. If a battery module could be swapped in/out and I could continue it would be ideal.

Thanks, Mark K
So far battery swapping for EVs is only happening in China. So far five automakers are offering BEVs who’s batteries can be swapped: NIO, Geely, BJEV, Lifan and SKIO.

Until automakers agree to make common-seized battery packs with common connections it’s uncertain if this will become a widespread practice.
12-16-2020


John;  Your hosting of this show was the best I have seen since I have been watching.  I am very curious as to whether you think Ford can make any money on this car. I think they will sell a ton of these!  I would love to see content on the show regarding thoughts on paying for the roads when the collection of the gas tax falls off.  I was also surprised at some of Eric Noble's comments.  I think he is greatly underestimating the future impact of BEVs and the speed of adoption that will occur.  Enjoyed the show!    Irvin
Irvin,

As long as automakers can sell their EVs for +$45,000 they can make a profit. So yes, Ford should make a net profit on Mach Es.

Many states are already dealing with the falloff of gasoline taxes by charging a higher registration fee for EVs. Hawaii is at the low end, charging $50 more. Ohio is at the high end, charging $200 more.

Let’s see how fast EVs are adopted. They will definitely ramp up quickly, but have a long way to go. Last month EVs only accounted for 1.4% of US sales.
12-16-2020


Instead of Electric Vehicles, General Motors and Ford should both be continuing to build cars like the Chevrolet Caprce, Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham, Ford Crown Victoria; and the Lincoln Town Car.
Also, General Motors should also team back up with Subaru; and the two companies jointly develop and build a Minivan unlike any that Chrysler has built since 1984, but is a lot like the Volkswagen Transporter, Mercedes-Benz Metris, Renault Trafic, Toyota Alphard, and the Nissan Elgrand.
Matthew, thanks for your letter. We’ll publish it in Viewer Mail so others can read it too.

John McElroy
12-16-2020


When you're minting money, desperados always want to take it. In Jeep's case, sheriff Manley had better keep an eye out for that well known desperado, "Mean Jim Farley". Word on the trails has it that Mean Jim's riding into town on a hard charging Bronco, and he's got his eye on all that gold.
 
Thanks and happy holidays to everyone on the Autoline crew.
 
Scott from Asheville
“Mean Jim” I’ll bet Farley would love hearing that!
12-14-2020


If ICE = BEV  why would you buy the ICE?  
At least 4x or even 5x more cost to operate the ICE.
 
WHEN  no ICE made, will take near 15 years to replace ICE fleet
Operating costs are definitely a plus for electric vehicles, but cold weather is not.

EV @ 25 degrees F = -40% range. @ <20 degrees = -50% range.

Snow Belt residents may be the last to go electric.
12-11-2020


Hello,



I've been enjoying your informative YouTube posts for many years. From time to time and lastly on 12-7-20 you talk about and show automotive stocks from the "Autoline Stock Index". I don't see the link in the "Show More" list in YouTube post, nor on your website.



Could you please send me the link?



Thank you,

PJ 
PJ,

Thanks so much for your interest. The Autoline Stock Index is still under construction. We think it will help our viewers get a better idea of how publicly traded automotive companies are doing in the stock market. We’ll probably be ready to roll out the whole thing in early 2021.

Best,
John McElroy
12-7-2020


Am I the only one who instantly thought; established Auto beware, you too better start telling the truth! So no more clean diesel, no more self charging hybrid, no more hydrogen fuel cells (for light vehicles) and get on with ramping up your EVs. No need to burn stuff anymore, BEVs are better vehicles in almost every metric real owners/drivers care about.
Anyone who doesnt get it yet, just hasnt got it yet.  
12-7-2020


The Freakonomics podcast had an interview with Mary Barra, released 12/02/2020. I believe the interview took place around November 19th.  The episode number is noteworthy: 442.
 
Neil G
Normal, IL
Thanks for sending, Neil. Much appreciated.

John McElroy
12-7-2020


Bonjour Jean,(from Canada)
    Boris Johnson announced that Britain will ban ICE vehicles, on their roads from 2030 & Germany has mandated that all service stations have electric charging stations. The air we breath kills over 1 million a year- that is why we must try to improve our air.-
    Most countries, except for a few, will ban gasoline/diesel vehicles by 2035, Norway, Ireland, Britain, China, India, by 2030, most others by 2035( the others will reluctantly follow, but face reality).
Yes, there will be minor cases for antiques & novelty vehicles, but the majority of vehicles will no longer pollute our air.
   Most EV batteries are warranted for ten years- by the time you need a new battery, it will be cheaper to get a new EV. 
12-7-2020


Hey guys,

Come on, you know how Taycan is pronounced.

Here it is again from PORSCHE...



Have a great day.
12-4-2020


Kudos to Hindenberg for blowing up the stock values on fraudulent 'green' and chi com companies!
 
Maybe they should go after Hyundai for building defective engines that burn up with main bearings that quickly wear, a hundred years into ICE manufacturing.  Note the sales plunge.
The Genesis looks sweet, but as 'Scotty' reveals in his work on 100k mi models...they don't last.
 
r work
R,

Good feedback. We need to get Hindenburg on one of the shows.

John McElroy
12-4-2020


After Hours, probably the only time he should be on, like Trevor Milton. You could go for a hat trick and get Jonny Tai, the CEO of Kandi America, in
for an interview.
A phoenix rising from the ashes, as Gary says, perhaps but he looks a bit burnt out in the process. Man he has not aged well, unlike some
autoline reporters. Still he is an old soul in the business, so he has seen it all and knows a lot but can he run a car business. I don't know, 
though he can certainly design them, seems like putting a pastry chef in charge of the entire kitchen, to use an analogy recently used by the 
CEO of Toyota.
 
Still no one on from Tesla. Maybe they just won't answer your e-mails. If you want to me shoot them one about coming on your show I will.
Though it might not do any good.
 
Happy Holidays. 
12-4-2020


Excellent interview of Fisker and his Magna connection. As I suspected, Fisker is bringing the ‘eye candy’ and Magna is making the hardware. There is a real risk the Magna’s base car(s) will define a universal price/performance level like Kia/Hyundai. This looks like the Bob Lutz criticism of Tesla that ‘everyone has the same EV technology’ in this case from a Magna base.

I wish him luck but have my doubts. I remember the 2009 Detroit Auto Show and disappointment with the Karma because of the “synthetic roar.” I was at the show to see Toyota releasing their 3d generation Prius at a time when many auto reviewers accused Prius people as being leaf-looking, Bambi loving, non-wrench turning, ‘greenies.’ The Prius whose quiet, high efficiency drivetrain received almost no notice from many automotive reporters.

Now if we could just get Blue Sky to get a Tesla company car. Seat time does more to explain what is going on than anything else.

Bob Wilson
Huntsville, AL
Bob,

I completely agree that seat time is critical to understanding Tesla. It took several days in both a Model Y P100 D and a Model 3 high performance to completely change my mind about the company. A friend lent them to me.

If Tesla would only reach out to the automotive media community and provide them with test cars it would instantly turn them into supporters. I know it's worked with Motor Trend and Car and Driver, but it's missing out on a huge opportunity.

John
11-30-2020


A lot of your episodes are about autonomous tech and safety tech. Have there been any studies into the level of demand for this. I know I’m in the minority but I am getting alarmed by the average price of new cars (more and more tech) and is there any concern that all this tech is breeding less skilled drivers? I wish more money and regulation would be put into driver training and regular testing of skill.



Thanks in advance. Always find the show informative.



Dan in Alberta
Dan,

Great question about the demand for autonomous technology. And we couldn’t agree more on the need for more driver training and regular skill testing.

You’re right, the price of new cars is turning a lot of customers to the used car market. Automakers are worried, but certainly when it comes to safety technology, they have no choice. In the US they already committed to making Automated Emergency Braking as standard equipment starting next year. There is also high consumer demand for blind spot detection.

When it comes to autonomous technology Cadillac says 75% of the customers who use Super Cruise say they will only buy another car that offers it. And Tesla customers will be shelling out $10,000 to unlock Full Self Driving. So amongst certain consumers, there is clearly high demand for this technology.

AV technology will continue to spread, but don’t look for fully autonomous cars in your local showroom anytime soon. AVs will likely be first used by fleets running ride-hailing services in population-dense geo-fenced cities.

John McElroy
11-30-2020


John, we are witnessing governments around the world FORCE the greatest misallocation of Capital in man’s history. When all is said and done we will have seen these Governments - including the USA’s - Force more than a TRILLION dollars into a wrongheaded idea > BEVs!  Save this e-mail!
Vince,

We’ll do more than save your email. We’ll publish it in Viewer Mail so others can read it too.

John McElroy
11-30-2020


From which year to which year did our Television Program "American Driver" run?
Also, when did we move out of our offices on Schoolcraft Road in Livonia?
Wow, now you’re taxing our memory. We moved out of our Livonia studio in 2011. American Driver ran for one or two seasons in the early 2000s.
11-30-2020


Ford E-transit. Finally! Well maybe. Not until late '21. Which is Detroit speak for '22. Ford will sell a million of them if they are ever made. Look forward to seeing one in your show. My Sasquatch won't get here until next summer. Maybe. The corporate inertia is underwhelming. 
Have a Great Thanksgiving. God bless to you and yours. Mark
Not until late '21. Which is Detroit speak for '22.

That is hilarious!

Happy Thanksgiving, and thanks for your note.

John
11-30-2020


Hi Guys,

Guessing someone has already let you know but on the part where you didn’t want to give your driving info to Apple or Google maps...Waze IS owned by Google. 



Roger
11-30-2020


Hi John,
     I was impressed with the number of new EVs from new fresh auto co.s, but our old ICE co.s must have their heads in the sand. We are supposed to have thousands, of EVs on our roads in about ten years, but most will come from new fresh products, because our auto industry is not producing the volume required.
11-13-2020

 
These guys might make a good ATW guest? Anything that improves the EV cost-performance equation these days is a subject of interest. They claim to have two OEM customers lined up.
 
Thanks guys.
Scott,

Thanks for sending. We’re aware of this company and will reach out to them.
11-13-2020


John
Saw this article this afternoon, quite a story.
Regards
Chuck
Chuck,

Great report, thanks for sending!
11-6-2020


Hi John/Sean,
 
This may be slightly old news, and I’m not even sure it’s worth sharing on A.D., but I thought I’d share anyway.  It appears Aston Martin is trying their hand at high-end residential design.  Check it out.
Michael,

Thanks for sending, I hadn’t seen this. I think Porsche Design did something in Miami. It’s interesting to see Aston take its brand into different industries. Maybe that’s a way to grow the company.

John
11-6-2020


Hi Mr. McElroy,
 
Thanks for starting Autoline Daily with Inmotive's Ingear EV transmission the other day.
 
I've been watching Autoline in its various forms since the 90's on PBS, so I jumped out of my chair to see the segment start with a product I'm working on!
 
Thanks so much and please keep up the great work!
 
Patrick
Patrick,

You’re welcome.

We love showing our viewers clever engineering and new technology, especially from the supplier community.

So congrats to you guys!

John McElroy
10-29-2020


I was talking with a friend in Sweden today, and the talk got around to EVs.  He indicated that the benchmark year for automakers with regards to tailpipe CO2 emissions is 2020, and that as a consequence, the European auto manufacturers are actively discouraging the sales of their EVs this year (in favour of ICE's), so as to make subsequent years less punitive.
 
I listen regularly to Autoline today and Afterhours and have not heard this aspect mentioned.  It helps explain the apparent low EV volumes that mainstream European manufacturers are demonstrating.
 
Neither of us are in the auto sector.
 
Bert
Bert,

It’s unlikely that European automakers discouraged sales of EVs this year because sales are booming. They’re up nearly 50% this year. The EU now leads the world in EV sales, even greater than in China.

Automakers can earn “super credits” by selling EVs this year, in 2021 and 2022 that make it easier to meet CO2 regulations. So those who have EVs in the market right now have an advantage since the super credits go away in 2023.

There will be a lot more EVs coming out in the next three years and sales will undoubtedly go much higher.

John McElroy
10-29-2020


Hi John.  I realize this is a bit late, but you mentioned something about the MONDEO last week.  I think this is the car that Ford was going to “compete” with Subaru’s OUTBACK.  I remember the wagon was going to be called the Fusion ACTIVE.  With Fords bigger 2.0 engine and AWD.  Is Ford still contemplating this?  Or with the COVID situation, are those plans kaput?   It is amazing no one has even tried to give Subaru some competition.   Thanks for being there.  I watch every day.  Bob
Bob,

Ford will come out with the Fusion Active in about a year. It will be a CUV/station wagon which looks very similar in profile to a Subaru Outback. Ford is consciously trying to come out with CUVs with different profitles because they’re all starting to look the same.

Thanks for being a loyal Autoline viewer!

John McElroy
10-29-2020


RE: VW's Oliver Schmidt released
This has not been mentioned on your show.
 
From NY Times, September 29th

Oliver Schmidt, who worked as Volkswagen’s liaison with American regulators, was sentenced to seven years in prison in 2017 after pleading guilty to charges that he helped cover up the wrongdoing. Mr. Schmidt was released last week, prison records indicate. The German edition of the Business Insider website reported Monday that Mr. Schmidt was transferred to Germany, where he is expected to be placed on probation.
Neil,

Oliver still has not been released by German authorities. We’ll have him back on the show when he’s able to do it.


John McElroy
10-27-2020


Dear Sir,
 
I really enjoy your reporting. I heard your story today on Tesla, and how they view all departments as “startups.” You did not explain what that means. I would be grateful for an elucidation.
 
Thank you.
 
Sincerely,
 
Joe
Joe,

Thanks for your interest.

As you probably know, in established or traditional companies, different parts of the company are business units that perform their functions according to company protocols and processes. Everything they do has to fit a pre-determined budget that generally gets reviewed every quarter. They are seldom given much autonomy.

A startup, on the other hand, figures everything out on its own. In tech companies, like Tesla, they often follow a “ready, fire aim” approach in which they just start doing things with the idea that they’ll figure out how to do it better as they go along. In other words, they often don’t follow a business plan, or even if they do, that plan is fluid and malleable.

Startups move far faster and take more risks than traditional companies. They’re willing to make mistakes, learn from them, and move on. “Fail fast” is a Silicon Valley motto. The danger is that they can fail, and most do. But the payoff is they can create new markets or move into established markets and disrupt them.

Tesla’s approach of treating all its business functions as startups is unique, and helps explain why it was able to move so fast in developing new products and services. The payoff is that it now has a higher market capitalization than any traditional automaker. In fact, it’s worth more than GM, Ford and FCA combined.

Best,
John McElroy
10-27-2020


G'day John, Sean and Gary!

Here is another idea for you and the team to consider.  With all of your collective automotive and business wisdom, it might be fun to start competitive auto industry stock portfolios.  They don't have to be real, but you could each manage one and report on the financial performance each week of the John Fund, the Gary Fund and the Sean fund.   You could even gather input from guests on AAH to see what they recommend.

You could each start with a predetermined amount of money (say $100,000), and then invest it in any five or more companies you like, so long as they are affiliated in some way with the automotive industry. You already talk about so many companies and their relative strengths or weaknesses, it would be fun to see what each of you pick for your portfolios and how each one performs.  I imagine that, like me, many of your viewers invest in the stock market and probably most of them have some stocks connected to the industry.

With each of you having your own portfolio, and likely picking different collections of companies, I don't think there would be any issues around the topic of endorsement or favoritism.  You might have to have a verbal waiver each time you discuss them. And, since they would be virtual instead of using your actual money, it distances it further from those types of issues.

What do you think?

GM Veteran
I think this is a great idea. I think we could have a lot of fun with this and get some great viewer involvement.
10-27-2020


Sean, your script writer let you down! [Tesla's] Automotive profit was $2,105M of which $397M was regulatory credits. Where do you think all the cash is coming from while paying for Berlin, Austin and Shanghai.
You’re referring to Tesla’s gross profit. That’s an important number but doesn’t capture the full story of how a company is operating. The operating profit and net profit tell a more complete story and that’s why we always use those numbers when we report a company’s financials.

Send us your thoughts: viewermail@autoline.tv