Teenagers are among the riskiest drivers, but they frequently end up with vehicles that don’t provide adequate protection in a crash.
Often, they find themselves driving old cars that lack modern safety features like side airbags or electronic stability control (ESC). When teenagers do get behind the wheel of a new car, it’s usually one of the smallest models, which don’t protect as well as larger vehicles in crashes.
Consumer Reports (CR) and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) are teaming up for the first time to recommend safe, reliable and affordable used vehicles for teenage drivers, with a list of 65 recommended used vehicles, ranging from $5,300 to $19,600, showing that safety can be both affordable and practical.
Read the article at IIHS.
Ford Media Center
As the all-new F-150 pickup and Bronco two- and four-door 4×4 rugged SUVs take customers on ever more extreme adventures, Ford and Telenav are helping ensure their connected navigation technologies continue working on far-off adventures unlike smartphone mapping apps that cease to work outside cellular range.
The available hybrid navigation solution, which stores maps and continues routing if adventures take drivers out of cell coverage, is part of the SYNC 4 technology available in the newly redesigned Ford F-150 and Bronco.
“F-150 and Bronco drivers now can get richer, quicker location search results, tow more confidently with custom routes and keep following off-road trail maps where other navigation systems go dark when cell coverage ends,” said Gary Jablonski, manager, Ford Connected Vehicle Infotainment Systems.
Read the article at Ford Media Center.
General Motors and EVgo plan to triple the size of the nation’s largest public fast charging network by adding more than 2,700 new fast chargers over the next five years, a move set to help accelerate widespread electric vehicle adoption.
The two companies will add fast charging stations to cities and suburbs, unlocking new EV customer segments and providing increased charging access to drivers who live in multi-unit homes, rent their homes and can’t install chargers, or might not have access to workplace charging.
Customers will have access to some of the fastest charging capabilities at the places they regularly frequent, like grocery stores, retail outlets, entertainment centers and other high-traffic locations. With fast charging available where people typically spend 15-30 minutes, customers can charge their vehicles in the time it takes to run their errands.
Read the article at EVgo.
The Detroit Bureau
U.S. motorists are holding onto their vehicles longer than ever, according to a new study, and the COVID-19 pandemic is getting much of the blame.
The typical car, truck and crossover is now a record 11.9 years old, reports IHS Markit, a month older than they were in 2019. The fact that cars are lasting longer and longer on the road should be a positive side effect for the aftermarket, as the majority of repairs for older vehicles come through the aftermarket channel.
The possibility of new lockdowns to halt the spread of the disease is one factor. But the surge in unemployment and the broader hit to the economy are likely to have an even more significant factor. Studies show many buyers, worried about their future, holding off on high-ticket purchases, including automobiles.
Read the article at The Detroit Bureau.
McKinsey & Company
With the “firefighting” phases of the first weeks and months of the crisis now in the past, mobility-service providers must rethink their strategies and focus on partnerships, portfolio optimization, and enhanced vehicle design to enable safe mobility going forward
Consumers may not always remain averse to shared mobility. In fact, people who want to avoid COVID-19 might eventually come to view ridesharing as a good alternative to more congested forms of mobility that make physical distancing difficult, such as public transportation.
OEMs and suppliers have an opportunity to work with mobility-service providers to promote thoughtful design of purpose-built vehicles that are safer for passengers. Some of the rideshare cars’ design changes, such as new, more hygienic interior materials, might also be desirable in private vehicles.
Read the article at McKinsey & Company.
Lyft Inc has partnered with the U.S. unit of German rental car group Sixt SE to expand its in-app rental business to carless city dwellers eager to take a trip.
Users can book a designated car through the ride-hailing app, add insurance and extras and directly pick up the car from the rental lot without waiting at the counter. Lyft already runs a limited rental car program in Los Angeles and the San Francisco Bay Area without the involvement of any car rental companies.
While rental car demand has plummeted across the country as a result of the pandemic and driven several companies, including Hertz Global Holdings Inc, into bankruptcy, demand in large cities with lower car ownership rates has boomed. In New York City, many rental locations have run out of cars and prices skyrocketed as residents seek to escape on extended trips.
Read the article at Reuters.
While Covid-19 cases are currently spiking and leading to the re-closing of segments of the economy, the full extent of the damage the pandemic has caused is still unknown: the future of live-work-play “downtowns” may never be the same, or at least not for some time.
Experiments like closing streets to traffic and finding other uses for public roadways make sense while such roads and spaces are being underutilized. If the work-from-home movement for most non-essential workers becomes permanent, downtowns will lose their luster as economic epicenters and some city streets may have so little traffic that closing certain corridors can be made permanent with little impact on congestion.
If working from home on a large scale is short-lived, but people generally continue to avoid public transportation, automobile use could explode further making measures like congestion pricing popular. There is still too much uncertainty facing the post-Covid-19 world to predict what the future will hold.
Read the article at Forbes.