When European drivers get into their cars as of Saturday (September 1), they may be surprised to learn that overnight their cherished vehicles have become about 20 percent less fuel-efficient and 20 percent more polluting than when they last turned the key. Read more: Study: Most EU carmakers report false CO2 emissions Not that many of them are expected to worry about their car's worse ecological footprint. But what those buying a car next week or later may find more difficult to contend with is a car tax bill that could be up to 70 percent higher than for an identical car bought, say, last week or earlier. That's the figure calculated by the German ADAC motorists' association for Volkswagen's VW up! The GTI model, whose annual taxes are set to rise from €50 ($58) per year to €85 in Germany on an overnight increase in its emissions from 110 grams per kilometer (g/km) to 128g/km. How come? Well, the car you own after September 1 is obviously still … [Read more...] about EU car buyers foot the bill of new emissions test
Hong Kong (CNN Business)China's car sales rose for the first time in a year last month, but the world's largest market remains stuck in a deep slump that shows little sign of ending soon as the country's massive economy slows. Geely (GELYF), one of China's biggest car makers, said late Monday that its net profit probably plunged by 40% in the first half of the year. In June alone, the company's car sales fell 29%. The slump was caused mostly by a bigger decrease in China sales than it had expected, the company said. Geely's sales fell 33% in its home market. Global brands are suffering, too. Ford (F) said last week that it sold nearly 22% fewer vehicles in China during the second quarter than in the same period a year ago. General Motors (GM) posted a 12% drop in vehicle sales in China for the quarter. Several major Chinese automakers have experienced even steeper falls. Haima Automobile reported a 70% slump in sales for the first five months. Chongqing Changan Automobile, Ford's … [Read more...] about China’s car market fell off a cliff this year. It faces a long road back
Washington, DC (CNN Business)For most people building self-driving cars, lidar is viewed as a godsend. In recent years, enthusiasm for the technology has sparked shortages of the depth-measuring sensor, acquisitions of startups developing it and more than a billion dollars of investments. Tesla CEO Elon Musk says they're all wasting their time. "Lidar is a fool's errand," Musk said in April at a Tesla event. "Anyone relying on lidar is doomed. Doomed." Lidar, which stands for light detection and ranging, sends out pulses that bounce off objects and return to the sensor, telling it how far away things are. This point cloud shows where lidar pulses reflected off nearby objects, helping a car to understand its surroundings. Companies with the most experience developing self-driving cars — including Alphabet's Waymo, Ford (F), and Amazon-backed Aurora — believe lidar is critical for safety. Lidar startups have raised $1.2 billion in the past five years, according to CB … [Read more...] about Most self-driving companies say this tech is crucial. Elon Musk disagrees.
Carmakers including Audi and Nissan are hoping to give driverless car passengers an escape from boredom by serving up virtual reality entertainment, according to industry executives. The automotive sector’s leading executives have gathered together at a tradeshow in Shanghai this week to find ways of keeping boredom out of vehicles and ensuring passengers stay occupied. “Once customers do not need to drive anymore… then the question is what kind of things can we offer inside this car,” Boris Meiners, a senior director of Audi’s digital business, told Reuters. Passengers of the future will no longer have to take control of the wheel as leading carmakers prepare to rollout driverless cars. Industry heavyweights such as Volkswagen, Daimler and Ford are all looking at the technology with keen interest, as well as Silicon Valley firms such as Uber and Waymo, a subsidiary of Google’s parent company Alphabet. Though there is still some time before the mass … [Read more...] about Audi and Nissan to banish boredom in driverless cars using virtual reality
You ever wake up and realize that the past 11 years of your life have been treading water, and you’ve been in stasis the whole time? You’re not alone! Nissan will share a beer with you, and talk resolutions, too. All that and more in The Morning Shift for Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2019. 1st Gear: Nissan Profits Down 70 Percent Hot on the heels of Honda announcing sales down, Nissan laid out a historically bad report of profits being down an amazing 70 percent, the company’s worst outlook in 11 years, as the Japan Times reports: Nissan, whose financial performance has been in the doldrums for nearly two years, cut its forecast for operating profit to ¥150 billion in the year through March 2020, from a previous forecast of ¥230 billion. The new forecast means earnings for the full year will be at their worst in 11 years. Years of heavy discounting and fleet sales, particularly in the United States, has left Nissan with a cheapened brand image and low vehicle resale … [Read more...] about Nissan Is Absolute Shambles
In October 2016, I watched my car lease company come and drive my vehicle away. No, I hadn't defaulted on payments. I'd decided to go #CarFree in Los Angeles—a crazy (though admirable) move, according to most Angelenos I meet. A fellow geek gifted me a Transit Access Pass (TAP) and explained how the interconnected train, light rail, subway and bus system worked. The pass sported a 1939 vintage photograph of Union Station's ticket hall, the location for the police station in the original Blade Runner, so I was sold. I've tested a bunch of mobility apps since then and am currently sticking with Google Maps since it now has live bus/train times. I've lived in cities with mass transit before—including London and NYC—and traveled widely. I even enjoyed getting lost on the Milan Metro and being hustled onto the platform by someone shouting through a megaphone in Beijing. In Los Angeles, going carless is not always as smooth a journey as one might hope. But that's what … [Read more...] about Inside a Hackathon Looking for Ways to Solve LA’s Traffic Problem