By Andrew Boada, Editor at Large
Sometimes, we get overcome with excitement when it appears that the high-tech future we have been dreaming of has finally arrived.
It looks like 2019 is going to be one of those times, for that is when, after years of breathless anticipation, one OEM – in this case, GM – says its fully autonomous, self-driving car, will finally, actually and, by many accounts, well ahead of schedule, will be here.
But I have one balloon-popping, rain-on- the- parade question to pose: Will you – Mr. or Ms. fleet manager – be ponying up to buy an autonomous vehicle (AV) next year? I think not. In fact, I think no fleet manager will be seriously considering making a self-driving vehicle their go-to acquisition for many years to come.
“At everything we do, we do the best we can"
By Mark Boada, Executive
Back in 1998, when Jim Christiano retired from a long career at General Motors, he created a new company to serve the needs of automotive fleets looking to relocate their vehicles. He called it, simply enough, PARS – short for Professional Automobile Relocation Service – and set up shop in Gainesville, Virginia, some 35 miles west of Washington, D.C. As Jim puts it, the idea was simple: to move vehicles from Point A to B.
The earthquake hit on Friday morning at 8:29AM local time. By the next Wednesday at 4AM, all eight major transportation corridors that had been severely damaged by the quake had re-opened.
The rapid response to damage in Anchorage shows how investing time and money into preparations for these kinds of large, infrastructure-hobbling events can pay off in the long-run, even when there’s no way to tell when or where disaster may strike.
Read the article at The Verge.
Trump may be trying to punish General Motors with his threat to kill a federal subsidy for electric vehicles, but it might be consumers who would feel the most pain, auto experts say.
Eliminating the $7500 tax credit would slow the EV market by making vehicles more expensive, says David Reichmuth, a senior engineer in the Clean Vehicles Program at the Union of Concerned Scientists. Automakers are still going to invest in dozens of new electric models to sell in markets such as Europe and China, Reichmuth says.
Read the article at Consumer Reports.
At a time when the global automotive industry is facing not only traditional competitive challenges but the risks posed by massive technological transformation, Ford Motor and Volkswagen plan to announce an alliance shortly after the new year.
Among the key elements expected to be part of the deal will be a cooperative effort to bring to market electrified and autonomous vehicles, something each of the companies already has spent billions of dollars developing. Talks included the possibility of taking over one of the American company's existing, underutilized assembly plants and that VW could wind up sharing more than one plant with Ford.
Read the article at CNBC.