Curb is one of several on-demand taxi-hailing apps that enable riders to use their mobile device to request a taxi, track its arrival, and pay their fare. Users will be quoted a fixed rate for their trip in advance that will help them figure out how much the trip will cost before they request a ride.
Fares are determined dynamically using live and historical trip data, and have been fine-tuned using hundreds of thousands of trips during its public beta program the company started in 2018.
Prior to implementing upfront pricing, Curb used to charge a flat $1.95 booking fee in addition to the fare. Curb now bundles the booking fee into the fare, which varies slightly based on supply and demand, but on average is around $2 per trip. However, drivers know exactly how much they’ll be charged by Curb before they accept a trip. Unlike Uber and Lyft, Curb does not charge drivers a percentage-based commission.
Read the article at Forbes.
Nikola Motors and its founder, Trevor Milton, are scrambling to save face after a research report exposed years of deception. This follows their new deal with GM, who doesn’t seem very concerned about their new partners’ past deception.
Among the dozen of claims in the report, some of the more damaging ones include an allegation that the first video of Nikola’s truck actually driving was the result of towing the truck up a hill and pushing it down. Another claim they developed their own inverter and released a video of it, but they were able to figure out that it was a Cascadia inverter, and Nikola simply put masking tape over their logo:
In the deal with GM, Nikola would use the automaker’s battery and fuel cell technology in Nikola’s Badger electric pickup truck and future vehicles, despite the fact that Nikola has been claiming for years that they are developing their own battery pack technology.
Read the article at Electrek.
Silicon Valley-based Lucid Motors, one of several electric vehicle startups hoping to become the next Tesla, debuted the production model of the Lucid Air, a slickly designed midsize sedan capable of going up to 517 miles on a single charge.
The base model, called the Lucid Air, will start at “below $80,000” with unspecified range and engine output. The Air Grand Touring will start at $139,000 with a range of 517 miles and 800 horsepower. Tesla’s longest-range electric car is the Model S Long Range Plus, which gets 402 miles and starts at $74,990, though it can cost more than $100,000 when options are factored in.
Lucid CEO and Chief Technical Officer Peter Rawlinson said the company’s goal is to make 34,000 vehicles per year once it completes its first phase of ramp-up, with plans to get up to 400,000 per year within six years. By comparison, Tesla sold 367,500 vehicles worldwide in 2019, up 50% for the year.
Read the article at USA Today.
The Detroit Bureau
Electrify America is expanding its product portfolio with the launch of a new business unit called Electrify Home designed to make it easier for EV owners to charge their vehicles with convenient home charging solutions.
“Right now, about 80% of electric vehicle charging is done at home. With the launch of Electrify Home, we’re providing flexible and forward-thinking home charging solutions for EV drivers of today and tomorrow,” said Nina Huesgen, senior manager, Home and eCommerce at Electrify America.
Beyond its Electrify Home offerings, Electrify America will continue to grow its public network of ultra-fast EV chargers with a goal to install or have under development approximately 800 total charging station sites with about 3,500 chargers by December 2021.
Read the article at The Detroit Bureau.
Life sentences for killer drivers in the UK will finally be introduced to parliament next year; a near four-year wait after a previous pledge from the Ministry of Justice.
It means someone found guilty of causing death by dangerous driving – or careless driving while under the influence of drink or drugs – now faces a maximum penalty of a life sentence instead of the current 14 years.
“Driving is a privilege not a right and yet our flawed legal system continues to allow convicted dangerous drivers on the roads where they can endanger others. We all want safer roads but we will only achieve this if the law treats road crime with the seriousness it deserves.”
Read the article at Fleet World.
Effects on fleets could last for years
By Mark Boada, Executive Editor
The Great Recession of 2007 lasted only 18 months, but it took another three to four years for state, county and municipal budgets to recover to pre-recession levels. Now, with the recession brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, it looks like things are going to be even worse, and fleet suffering may be greater and longer than in the last economic contraction.
But, as Steve Saltzgiver, a long-term government and corporate fleet manager, wrote here in July, there are a number of initiatives that fleets can take to soften the blows and put themselves in a better position when the economy recovers. Before recounting them, though, it’s important that fleet managers understand the basics of the current recession and how it compares to the last one.
The current recession is in only its eighth month, but in some respects it’s already the worst U.S. economic contraction since the Great Depression of the 1930s.
While extreme weather is a part of the natural cycle, the recent uptick in the ferocity and frequency of these extremes, scientists say, is evidence of an acceleration of climate impacts, some of which were underestimated by climate computer models.
But many scientists believe that there is more at play contributing to this extreme weather than simply the direct effects of warming and drying. One of those mechanisms is the indirect impacts of global warming on the most influential weather-maker on day-to-day conditions: the jet stream.
“While the extent of the ongoing fire siege is beyond what most have seen in the West, the alignment of ingredients for such fire seasons is becoming more favorable as a result of climate change and land-use practices,” Dr. John Abatzoglou, climate professor at the University of California Merced said. “We should expect, adapt, and prepare for similar years moving forward.”
Read the article at CBS News.