Owning an automobile is falling out of favor in cities around the world as ride-hailing and other new transportation options proliferate and concerns over gridlock and pollution spark a reevaluation of privately owned wheels.
A decade ago the auto industry predicted annual global vehicle sales would top 100 million by now, but they’ve stalled instead, falling to 94.2 million last year, down 1 million from 2017.
“I would never go back to owning a car,” says Larry Kim, chief executive officer of MobileMonkey Inc., a Facebook Messenger marketing platform, who says he’s recovered an hour a day by not driving. “Your time is not free, right? Your time is worth more than $20 an hour. So in my case, why not spend $15,000 to $20,000 a year to get all of that time saved?”
Read the article at Bloomberg.
Drivers can forget to shut off a keyless vehicle, because as the name infers, there is no physical key to turn.
Some motorists, particularly older ones, have inadvertently left cars with the engine running in garages attached to homes, which have filled up with carbon monoxide and poisoned occupants, often while they slept.
Connecticut Senator Richard Blumenthal introduced a bill, supported by General Motors, that would direct the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to adopt a rule requiring automakers to include a feature that automatically shuts off an engine after a specified period of idling.
Read the article at The New York Times.
The founders of the ride-sharing app Lyft, Logan Green and John Zimmer believe that car ownership is in permanent decline and they want to help it die.
"We believe that the world is at the beginning of a shift away from car ownership to Transportation-as-a-Service, or TaaS. Lyft is at the forefront of this massive societal change," they told investors. "Car ownership has economically burdened consumers. US households spend more on transportation than on any expenditure other than housing. "
Read the article at Business Insider.
The Governors Highway Safety Association reported that the number of pedestrian deaths involving SUVs increased by 50 percent from 2013 through 2017.
That reflects booming sales of SUVs and the fact that pedestrians are much less likely to survive the impact of an SUV.
Other factors contributing to the increase may include additional people walking to work, insufficient pedestrian road crossings, speeding, drowsy driving, drinking and population growth in certain areas. Distracted driving and distracted walking are also widely believed to be factors, though experts say they are hard to prove.
Read the article at USA Today.
Over the next three years, Germany’s automotive industry will invest over 40 billion euros ($45 billion) in electric vehicles, tripling the number of models.
The plan is pivotal to reach ambitious goals in the European Union to reduce carbon dioxide emissions and requires the expansion of charging infrastructure. “The ramp-up of electric mobility is coming in Europe. This also demands the appropriate regulatory conditions -- right across Europe,” said VDA President Bernhard Mattes
Read the article at Bloomberg.