Audi tells Dealers to back EVs, i3 + Model S Crash tests, Mirai SuperBowl Ad: – T.E.N. 2/3/17

Audi tells Dealers to back EVs, i3 + Model S Crash tests, Mirai SuperBowl Ad: – T.E.N.  2/3/17


Coming up on today’s show: Audi tells its
dealerships to get behind electric vehicles, the BMW i3 and Tesla Model S both narrowly
miss out on earning the IIHS top safety pick, and Toyota plans the most targeted Super Bowl
ad we’ve ever seen. These stories and more, next on TEN. Like all our content, today’s show is only
possible thanks to the kind donations of viewers like you. Head to www dot patreon dot com
forward slash transport evolved to find out how you can make your own donation today to
keep us independent and impartial. And if you’re already donating, thanks for your
continued support. It’s Friday, Feburary third, 2017, I’m
Nikki Gordon-Bloomfield and I’m here to tell you what’s been going on this week
in the world of cleaner, greener safer and smarter transportation. And while I’m going
to be as independent and impartial as possible, I feel there should be a trigger warning on
the show because, well, politics will be mentioned (if only the facts in passing). Okay with that warning out of the way we can
start with our first story courtesy of Volkswagen’s premium brand Audi, which has told its dealers
around the world to ‘get with the program’ when it comes to electric cars, because electric
cars will be around for many years to come. Audi, which already sells the Audi A3 e-tron
plug-in hybrid in many markets and is poised to introduce the all-electric long-range Audi
e-tron crossover SUV to market in the next two years, plans to introduce several all-electric
models across its range before twenty twenty. And as such, wants to make sure its dealers
are on board. It’s no surprise then that at this week’s
JD Power Automotive Summit — held on the eve of the annual National Association of
Automobile Dealers’ annual convention — Audi of America’s President made the massage
very clear. Embrace electric cars and new mobility products, or face an uncertain future. Pretty clear, don’t you think? As we mentioned in last week’s show, since
before the inauguration of President Trump, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has been one of a number
of successful entrepreneurs regularly meeting at the White House to offer advice and guidance
to the new President. That’s led Musk to receive criticism from
some fans, especially those who view the recent entry ban on visitors, immigrants and even
green card holders from seven middle-eastern countries as unconstitutional and racist.
Some have even gone further, cancelling their Model 3 reservations in protest over some
comments Musk made about the ban and perhaps hoping that they can encourage Musk to cut
ties with the White House in the same way Uber CEO Travis Kalanick did mid-week. So far, Musk has remained firm, stating that
while he is still on the advisory panel it doesn’t mean he necessarily agrees with
Trump. Instead he said he hopes to bring up his objections to various executive orders
that have been made, making suggestions on how they could be changed. And while this
story is likely to be a little too political for some, the close ties between Tesla and
the White House makes this story newsworthy. When it comes to figuring out the safety ratings
for any new car, there are a handful of trusted sources you probably visit, depending on where
you are in the world. Europe has EuroNCAP for example, while the U.S. has the National
Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the fully-independent Insurance Institute
for Highway Safety, the latter of which likes to award top safety picks to cars that both
ace its suite of automotive crash tests and feature a plethora of on-board tech to keep
drivers and passengers safe. And while new car safety is continually improving,
the IIHS’s tests for automotive vehicle safety also get tougher to pass each year,
catching some automakers out and resulting in a less impressive test. Which is, I think
how both the 2017 Tesla Model S and 2017 BMW i3 both failed to earn the coveted top-pick
award this year, drawing criticism respectively for their performance in the small overlap
test and whiplash protection in rear-impact tests. Importantly though, both automakers are working
on improving vehicle safety performance, and Tesla says it has already implemented a production
change to improve performance in the tests it did less well in this time. In response,
the IIHS says it will test the Model S again, so watch this space… From crash testing now to fully autonomous
vehicles, and the news that Alphabet’s Waymo program — previously known as the Google
Self-Driving Car project — has made some impressive improvements in its autonomous
vehicle capabilities in the past year. That’s according to the official California
DMV annual summary of autonomous vehicle driver disengagement reports, which tracks the number
of times a human has been forced to intervene in the operation of an autonomous car operating
in autonomous mode. As the report details, the number of human
interventions across Waymo vehicles in twenty sixteen was one fourth that of the number
of human interventions for Waymo cars in twenty fifteen, equivalent to one intervention every
five thousand miles in 2016 vs one intervention every 1250 miles in 2015. And that’s some impressive improvement,
especially given the Waymo fleet covered more than six hundred thousand miles on California’s
roads in that time. Well done! We’re back to Tesla for the next story,
which completed all the necessary paperwork this week to officially change its name from
“Tesla Motors” to just plain old “Tesla.” The name change, officially made early this
week, marks the transition of Tesla from an automaker to a vertical energy company, and
closes a chapter on Tesla’s history which saw it go through some massive expansion,
launch three electric cars (and preview a fourth) and acquire California photovoltaic
solar panel company SolarCity. So here’s to the new Tesla, and congratulations
on a successful …. Delivery? Marriage? Either way, mazel tov! It may have only been on sale for just over
a month, but General Motor’s brand-new electric car, the Chevrolet Bolt EV, is already setting
some pretty impressive sales figures in its launch markets of California and Oregon. As official sales data released by GM at the
end of January show, The Chevrolet Bolt EV sold a total of one thousand one hundred and
sixty two cars, bringing its six-weeks-since-launch sales total to one thousand seven hundred
and forty one cars. Not only does this mean that the Bolt EV could
easily punch through ten thousand examples in the first six months — maybe less — but
it also is far better than the sales of any other affordable electric car at launch. And
that proves two things: people will pay for an electric car that will meet their needs
with more than 200 miles of range per charge. Nice one, GM! A company not having quite as good a time
of it right now is Faraday Future, which, following the flashy FF91 reveal event earlier
this year in Las Vegas, Nevada has quietly changed the plans for its first automotive
production facility. According to Reuters, the company, following
massive financial strain and numerous court cases against it for not paying bills, has
decided to downside its production facility from the original 3-million square too down
to six hundred thousand square feet. That’s one quarter the original size, a
claim which Faraday Future has not confirmed but which would bring down potential annual
production figures from more than one hundred thousand vehicles to just ten thousand a year.
At the same time, the car company is said to be cutting its future portfolio from seven
models down to two. As I said last week however, it seems that we’re now well and truly in
the death watch stage for this company, so unless a miracle happens, don’t expect to
buy a car any time soon. Two companies with a little more optimism
for the future of a manufacturing venture are GM and Honda, which confirmed this week
that they will be working together to build a new hydrogen fuel cell stack production
facility at GM’s existing lithium-ion battery manufacturing facility in Brownstown, Michigan. The two firms, which have been working together
on hydrogen fuel cell technology now for more than four years, have amassed an impressive
number of patents surrounding hydrogen fuel cell technology, and now say that they’re
ready to use those patents to bring affordable hydrogen fuel cell products to market. Their joint investment — worth eighty-five
million dollars, isn’t as large as GM’s battery investment has been in recent years,
but should see production hydrogen fuel cells rolling off the production line in just under
four years’ time. Will it lead to production fuel cell cars? That’s another question
altogether, and one I can’t answer right now. Sorry. Buy an internal combustion-engined car, and
the chances are you can take your car to whichever repair shop you wish, regardless of the make
or model of your car. Or perhaps even work on it yourself. But in the electric vehicle world that’s
not necessarily the case, with most electric cars needing to go back to an approved dealership
for the car you own for regular servicing and maintenance, which upsets those from the
right-to-repair movement: a global push to take back the right of customers to repair
and maintain their own purchases — be they a dishwasher, computer or car — on their
own. And as our friends at Electrek reported this
week Tesla — one of the worst offenders when it comes to restricting service parts and
information to owners who don’t want to use its service centers — is considering
its own right-to-repair program that will perhaps make it possible for enthusiastic
wrench-turning owners to repair or service their own cars without having to shell out
thousands at the local Tesla service center. Sadly, this is a developing story so there’s
not much more to share right now — however, we do know that it will likely be based on
the scheme operating in Massachusetts, the only state in the Union where Tesla MUST (by
law) make it easy for Tesla owners to work on their own cars. So watch this space and
I’ll bring you more info as I have it. We may now be more than sixteen months after
the original Dieselgate Scandal, but believe it or not, we’re still hearing about the
various compensation packages that are due hundreds of thousands of owners of diesel-engined
cars around the world. So far, we’ve seen Volkswagen pay out twenty
billion dollars in the U.S. alone, as well as similarly large figures in other parts
of the world for building certain model-year diesel cars with so-called “cheat devices”
designed to cheat in emissions tests while emitting more than 40 times the legal nitrogen
oxide limits at other times. Well now it appears tier one automotive parts
supplier Bosch is about to make its own payout to owners of affected vehicles. Bosch, which
not only supplied Volkswagen with the engine control hardware but also wrote the software
that Volkswagen used to cheat emissions tests, has been forced by U.S. courts to pay out
three hundred and twenty seven and a half million dollars in compensation to owners
of affected cars in the U.S., or between three hundred and fifty and fifteen hundred dollars
each. And since this story rumbles on, I’ve given up on calling it over because every
time I do, something else comes along. The Toyota Mirai Hydrogen Fuel Cell Sedan
might be a particularly difficult car to get hold of given its limited production and even
more limited availability, but that doesn’t mean Toyota is going to pass up on the chance
to take advantage of the most valuable ad spend of the year to show how green it is. Yes, I am of course talking about this weekend’s
coming SuperBowl fifty one, in which companies from around the world throw literally billions
of dollars at TV companies in the hope that they can leverage the massive television audience
to carry out some good old-fashioned advertising. And even though its short fifty-second ad
— involving a daisy that’s brought back to full health by a friendly hydrogen fuel
cell sedan dumping water on it — will only be seen in Los Angeles and San Francisco,
Toyota clearly wants some kudos to encourage people to visit their local dealership. Do
they want everyone to drive hydrogen? Well not likely — this is a halo car to get people
into SUVs, Pickups and whatever else Toyota has on offer — but if you’re in either
of those two markets keep your eyes peeled for the at this coming Sunday. And finally, It doesn’t matter if you’re fifty five
or fifteen, the chances are you have at one point, spent some time on a smelly, noisy
school bus, either to get you to and form school or to take you on an official school
trip. Well, it turns out that the days of the smelly
diesel school bus may be numbered thanks to the news that Bluebird — the biggest manufacturer
of school busses in the U.S. — has just been awarded a 4.4 million dollar grant from the
U.S. department of Energy to develop an all-electric school bus with vehicle to grid capabilities. I should note here that there are already
some electric busses — and electric school bus conversions — in existence, but as the
go-to for school busses for more than eighty-five years, it’s exciting to see this American
icon pick up a plug. Here’s hoping we see some zero-emission busses very soon. Talking of very soon, that’s how long it
is until the next episode of TEN, because all being well, I’ll be back next week at
the usual time with another show. As always, thanks for joining me and as usual, please
don’t forget to like, comment, and subscribe to the Transport Evolved YouTube channel. Don’t forget that you can also follow us
on Twitter at Transport Evolve, and read our past and current articles at Transport Evolved.com.
And if you liked what you saw today, please consider keeping us independent and impartial
by supporting our Patreon crowdfunding campaign from as little as one dollar per month over
at Patreon dot com forward slash transport evolved. And if you can’t remember the website
address don’t worry: YouTube’s new end credit feature means there’s a link directly
to our Patreon page at the end of this show — as well as links to some of our other videos
we think you’ll enjoy. I’m Nikki Gordon-Bloomfield, that was TEN,
have a great weekend and until next time, Keep Evolving!

About the Author: Michael Flood

45 Comments

  1. I strongly dislike the Diselgate news. I want to know about future transportation not that Disels are dirty or what fines VW has to pay

  2. i saw one of the self driving vehicles for the first time operated by uber in Tempe arizona a couple of days ago. Do we know what all the areas there testing those vehicles are?

  3. Whilst I'm sure there will be some that will dislike any mention of anything political I totally agree that the Musk story being included. It is inextricably linked to the development of new transport in America. Likewise with the dieselgate story. This is, after all, Transport Evolved. The evolutionary process involves extinctions of superceded designs and it is relevant that that process is reported on. Keep up the excellent work Nikki.

  4. So (just asking) does every automous Waymo car have a noddy spinning thingy on the roof in order to make it work? Why does Tesla not need this stupid thing?

  5. I don't know why people are pissed off at Musk for being on the presidential council. At least in that position he may have some influence on that sinking ship of an administration. He may be able to help keep things afloat.

    How would it serve anyone for him to make an enemy of Trump, or anyone in the WH?

    Certainly journalists & comedians should continue skewering the morons who occupy the highest offices now, but if any sane businessman can get in there to try to limit the destruction, I think that's a good thing.

  6. OK SOOO BOTH PEOPLE ARE STUPID AND SOOO ARE BUSINESS LEADERS….SO PEOPLE ARE STUPID BECAUSE elon musk on on his team for manufactoring insight and things like that and isnt relavant to certain policies, buisness leaders are stupid because they give they opinion on the ban instead of shutting the fuck up and staying neutral…. thats why uber lost $$$$

  7. Did anyone else get an ad interrupt the show mid flow? Nikki, it interrupted you mid sentence about 5 or 6 minutes in. Very distracting. I've not had it happen anywhere before, so could be a YouTube glitch, or maybe experiment. If ads within a show are to become a thing (and I wouldn't put it past Google to do that), perhaps they give you the option to set cueing points to at least have them scheduled between segments?

  8. Cutting ties with the White house would really be the stupidest thing to do, nobody benefits from this. Dialog is the best thing to do if you disagree on certain topics.

  9. Good episode. Elon Musk has gone up in my estimation as the new administration is clearly not as friendly to alternate fuels etc as the old administration and Elon Musk staying on as an advisor and not bailing out like others clearly shows he is not afraid to stand his corner I can imagine he is as popular as a fart in a spacesuit with other cronies. So these people who cancelled their orders etc are very short sighted.

  10. I'd love to see Toyota making hydrogen pickup trucks (when hydrogen are more available) in the future. A hydrogen Hilux would be awesome!πŸ˜„ (but yeah, Cd values would be poor)

  11. Faraday guy smiling and being delusional is cringeworthy enough but the prospect of them conning customers out of money is offensive.

  12. What did those offended Model 3 resevers do when their country violated the countries and its citizen were singled out with sanctions and bombs? When they can't travel to the source of the bombs, that's the drop in the bucket. People are so hypocrit when it comes to ethics and politics. And the hypocricy makes it to the news, without a hint to the hyprocricy of it.

  13. You can't influence people who will not listen to you. Musk staying in the room is a good thing. People cancelling their orders are thinking in terms of a zero-sum game… winners and losers. Unfortunately, this is actually a less than zero-sum… we lose even more if we don't play and Trump has no input from reason. it is a question of limiting losses. Makes no sense to walk away, game theoretically.

    Oh, and do you have a link to the audi video with the dog in it?

  14. Obama was spending 8 years bombing 7 countries and in that way was creating hundreds of thousands of terrorists, but that didn't seem to bother these celebs that are now inciting violence and generally making every sane person boycotting the pedophile network called Hollywood. (Well done California to start the pedo-arrests, but that was just tiny branch!)

    My problem with Trump is that he isn't getting out of the Middle East fast enough which is a damn more important issue than a temporary travel restriction.

  15. Americans are aggressive when it comes to economics (and anything else). They made Volkswagen pay billions of dollars but protect the company of god (apple) after it's shit in Ireland.

  16. At 11:49 when they press the H2O button the disclaimer says, "Dramatization", water volume may vary. Firstly, is there actually an H2O button on these things or is that just advertising license and it really goes as steam? And, if the driver does get to choose when the car pees its pants, what is the actual maximum water retention volume and flow rate?

  17. We have long suspected that the VW NOx story,
    is in all honesty the BOSCH NOx story .

    And thus will effect many (most ?) Euro-diesels.

    Why is the Motor Journalism sector so SLOW to pick up on this ?

  18. Trump won fair and square. People need to get over it. And so the hell what if musk is on the panel he has nothing to do with the ban. He is there for business and cars not bans. It's not in his lane or area of business. It's just like the people sending the people that was performing death threats. It's easier to work with people and find a solution then to be working against them and nothing gets done.

  19. At the same time it's radically cutting its U.S. factory plans, Faraday Future is planning to build a huge factory in China. It may be a technology transfer scam (i.e. intellectual property theft) by China. (Many of the Faraday Future engineers came from Tesla.)

  20. I hope this comment doesn't come across as too intellectual . . . cancelling a Model 3 order because Musk is advising US President is dumb. πŸ™‚

  21. Musk is none political so these haters who criticise him need to wake up and smell the coffee. We need someone with different opinions in the room not 16+ people who all agree with Trump. Too many dumb people talking on social media….

  22. Audi fake news gets on the Trump approach to dissing the competition with lies and distraction tactics.
    Audi – stop the fake stuff and simply make cars that talk for themselves.

  23. I took a second apartment in Germany since I believed their renewable BS. I got into an conversation with the Left political party in 2015 and I said that I blamed the German workers for not goint to EV. They did not like that but I said that the workers unions were at the same table as the management. I was smiling inside when I saw the article in January 2017 that Audi was transferring about 35,000 workers to EV production, under pressure from the unions.
    Keep up the very professional videos, Nikki.

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