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Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1700 on: April 18, 2017, 10:23:11 PM »
If the hardware is already sitting in my garage, why pay for some other robot to tend the hedges.

Let's assume the attachment to your car (?) that trims your shrubbery or your robotic trimmer costs you $5k.  You use it three hours a year.  It could be trimming over 500 other people's shrubbery per year (assume 12 hour trim days, six month season).  Allow the owner 100% markup to cover business expenses and profit.  $10k / 500 = $20 per year.  You don't have to worry about keeping the blades sharp and give up garage space.

$5k in an index fund returning 8% = $400.

I actually drove a cab once and know how passengers clean up after themselves.

If you call up a robotaxi the first thing you'll want to do is to take a quick look to see if the interior is clean.  If not, punch a button on your phone and let the company know.  If you live in a city or suburb they should be able to get a clean car to you in a very few minutes.  They'll know who last used the car.  They'll have the ability to charge them for the cleanup.

You'll be sure to do a quick check because you won't want to be charged for the mess you didn't make when the next user drops a dime.

Much of the car ownership thing was about bragging rights.

You could, instead, brag about the vacation you took or the four star meal you had with the money you saved by not owning a car.  You could purchase a multi-hundred dollar purse and carry it out in front of you so that others can see the brand.  As my sister-in-law does.

When Rex is driven to the park, then walked, and cleaned up after, by your RR Deluxe, with the Doggy Do Do option, the neighbor ladies will swoon. W

You could have a Rexmobile on schedule for every morning at 7:30 so that Rex is taken for his morning ritual while you eat breakfast.  And then you could ride to the opera that evening in a robotaxi that didn't smell like Rex.

The heavily chromed hardtop convertible model that mixes frozen margaritas as you cruise the beach, then disappears and returns with a blanket, an umbrella and a box of Super Sized Condoms, will sell like hot cakes, or hot tamales depending on your local.

The heavily chromed convertible with built in bar and robo bartender will rent like hotcakes to those who are heading to the beach that day.  You could be one of them.

Other days you may call for a pickup to move your fridge.  Or a van to haul your latest IKEA treasures.  Or a multiple passenger van so that you can take your neighborhood dance troupe to the Kecak competition.  Or a robo-ride with lots of glass and an upscale audio system for your ride through the desert in bloom.

A chicken in every pot & a Rollin' Robbie in every garage.

(Invest in the companies that own the robo-rides.  Then you'll be able to afford two chickens in every pot.  And more pots. ;o)





Sigmetnow

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1701 on: April 19, 2017, 12:31:16 AM »
When I purchase an autonomous vehicle have I purchased autonomous personalized transportation, or an autonomous personalized robot?

Some of the tasks you list will likely be performed by self-driving vehicles, but probably not the one you own.

I can see a lot of grocery shopping going online.  Getting low on milk?  Click on milk and it's added to your shopping list.  When you really need something you'll press "Order" and your list will be filled and added to the delivery vehicle heading to your neighborhood.  Same with laundry/cleaning pickup and delivery. And takeout food.  Actual times will need to be coordinated so that you meet the delivery vehicle in a timely manner.
...

Many warehouse clubs already have arrangements to "place your order online and it will be waiting for you at the loading dock when you arrive."  It's a small step from that to:  placing your Costco order, sending your autonomous car to the loading dock, getting confirmation and remotely unlocking the trunk, and having them load your order, whereupon your car returns home with the goodies.  :)
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1702 on: April 19, 2017, 12:59:34 AM »
... and snowmobiles!

“All-electric propulsion is slowly but surely taking over every segment of ground transport one at a time.”

All-electric snowmobiles are coming – first tests proved successful in Whistler
https://electrek.co/2017/04/18/all-electric-snowmobiles-taiga-motors/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

TerryM

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1703 on: April 19, 2017, 01:08:02 AM »
When I purchase an autonomous vehicle have I purchased autonomous personalized transportation, or an autonomous personalized robot?

Some of the tasks you list will likely be performed by self-driving vehicles, but probably not the one you own.

I can see a lot of grocery shopping going online.  Getting low on milk?  Click on milk and it's added to your shopping list.  When you really need something you'll press "Order" and your list will be filled and added to the delivery vehicle heading to your neighborhood.  Same with laundry/cleaning pickup and delivery. And takeout food.  Actual times will need to be coordinated so that you meet the delivery vehicle in a timely manner.
...

Many warehouse clubs already have arrangements to "place your order online and it will be waiting for you at the loading dock when you arrive."  It's a small step from that to:  placing your Costco order, sending your autonomous car to the loading dock, getting confirmation and remotely unlocking the trunk, and having them load your order, whereupon your car returns home with the goodies.  :)
And perhaps a shorter step to telling your car to order a new Wizzer from the lowest cost supplier, then bring it home.


How about a bunch of smart cars that decide amongst themselves that since Steve's RR will be heading to Costco and Bob's Tesla is off to the computer shop, they could pick up John's smart car's computer and folding chair orders and drop them to him once he's done taking Rex to the vet. Later John's car will be taking Bob's Tesla's pooch for a walk anyway.


AAAWWWKKK
Terry

Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1704 on: April 19, 2017, 01:56:01 AM »
How about a bunch of smart cars that decide amongst themselves

Possible.  But my guess is that most people, after a few years, will decide that there is no advantage to them in owning a car.  They'll opt for more money in their pockets and fewer hassles.

I can see larger volume stores like Costco and grocery stores with their own fleet of delivery vehicles which pull into the warehouse, get loaded with the prepacked containers to be dropped off, and zipping off on a computer designed route.  Texting their delivery address a few minutes before they arrive. 

Smaller volume stores might use a 'UPS' generic delivery service that routes a vehicle to their site, picks up what they need to deliver, then continues along it's route picking up and dropping off stuff as it goes.  Food delivery vans might have separate compartments for hot and cold food.  Pizza delivery vans might do the cooking minutes before arrival. 


DrTskoul

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1705 on: April 19, 2017, 03:18:14 AM »
How about a bunch of smart cars that decide amongst themselves

Possible.  But my guess is that most people, after a few years, will decide that there is no advantage to them in owning a car.  They'll opt for more money in their pockets and fewer hassles.

I can see larger volume stores like Costco and grocery stores with their own fleet of delivery vehicles which pull into the warehouse, get loaded with the prepacked containers to be dropped off, and zipping off on a computer designed route.  Texting their delivery address a few minutes before they arrive. 

Smaller volume stores might use a 'UPS' generic delivery service that routes a vehicle to their site, picks up what they need to deliver, then continues along it's route picking up and dropping off stuff as it goes.  Food delivery vans might have separate compartments for hot and cold food.  Pizza delivery vans might do the cooking minutes before arrival.

That's what the 60s science fiction was all about.. predicting it for the 2000s along with flying cars...
“You can know the name of a bird in all the languages of the world, but when you're finished, you'll know absolutely nothing whatever about the bird... So let's look at the bird and see what it's doing -- that's what counts.”
― Richard P. Feynman

Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1706 on: April 19, 2017, 05:13:40 AM »
Looks like they were about 20 years too optimistic for the self-driving car stuff.

Flying cars?  Better batteries and we might see them.  But I don't see a big need.  Perhaps some sort of low cost flying bus service to get to places where roads won't get you in a hurry.

Google says it's 57 miles from my house to the grocery store and takes about an hour and a half to drive (windy mountain road).  It probably takes a little longer than that, Google doesn't know how bad part of the road is.

Straight line, flying taxi, 34 miles.  20 minutes?  I might pay some more to fly some of the time. 

rboyd

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1707 on: April 21, 2017, 04:11:31 AM »
The problem with self-driving cars, software quality:

“Nobody has a software engineering methodology today that can ensure systems perform safely in complex applications, particularly in systems with a really low tolerance for faults, such as driving,”

Being a retired software executive, I can attest to this. If google messes up your search request it doesn't get you (and others possibly) killed. The possible interactions of millions of cars, using many different software suppliers and interacting with human-driven cars, will be an incredibly complex problem to manage. Extensive use will be many, many years away and also a gift for the lawyers.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/deadly-tesla-crash-exposes-confusion-over-automated-driving/

Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1708 on: April 21, 2017, 04:41:33 AM »
There was a crash when a tractor trailer turned in front of a Tesla using autopilot.  That was an autopilot system, not a self-driving system.  Drivers were suppose to serve as a backup system. 

The idea was to get a partial self-driving system (lane keeping, adaptative cruise control, and automatic braking) out and let hundreds of drivers test it in real world conditions.  This driver found a flaw in the system but through his inattention allowed it to become a fatal flaw.

Following that crash Tesla modified their sensor system. 

Tesla's plan is to put hundreds of thousands of EVs on the road for at least a year with their self-driving systems observing what drivers encounter so that Tesla can assure that they've identified as many unusual problems as possible and modify their systems prior to letting their cars drive themselves.

Tesla's can drive themselves now.  Here's a video of a Tesla driving itself. 

https://youtu.be/eAal0juXXzU

You'll notice that the person sitting in the passenger seat keeps tapping the steering wheel with his fingers.  That's a requirement that Tesla has put in their self-driving systems for now.  If the driver does not tap often enough the system turns off.  It increases the odds that the observer-rider is paying attention.

Over a year Tesla will gather data on billions of miles of driving, map most roads in the US, and find as many "turning trailer" problems as they can.

We should never expect self-driving cars to be 100% accident free.  There's always going to be a deer that leaps from behind a large rock just as the car arrives.  Or a piano that falls from snapped cable immediately in front of the car.  Or a sinkhole that opens under the car.

What we can expect is that self-driving cars will be significantly safer than human drivers.  Our odds of avoiding an accident won't fall to zero, but should fall to more than 1/10th what they are with human drivers.

oren

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1709 on: April 21, 2017, 07:31:53 AM »
Indeed, the problem with human-driven cars is the humans. With so many "human error" accidents, it is 100% certain that an automation/human combo will be better than human alone. This already works in real life today with low-level automation such as ABS, or the "rear warning" thing that beeps when my car backs up too close to another car or other object.
And it is highly probable that a pure automation system will be safer than pure human-operated, especially after enough time has passed using the combo approach.

mati

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1710 on: April 21, 2017, 02:12:27 PM »
The creation of self driving car hardware and software is complex,involving CPUs, GPUs and FPGAs, mulitple sensors (cameras, lidars, sonars, radars), self learning algorithms and sensor fusion:

http://www.nvidia.com/object/drive-px.html#source=pr

so complicated in fact that safety certification to IEC61508 and ISO26262 (safety certfication standards) will not be possible, but some new way of assessing the safety of the self driving car will have to be developed.

It will be interesting to see what the NHTSA, other automobile safety authorities and insurance companies (OH and lawyers) have to say...
and so it goes

Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1711 on: April 21, 2017, 05:07:21 PM »
Insurance companies have recognized that self-driving cars and cars with collision avoidance systems are probably going to have huge impacts on their business.  I think it was State Farm who, a few years back, said that they were in the process of looking for ways to replace the auto insurance business that they expected to lose.

States (some states) seem to not be having a problem with self-driving cars being tested on their roads.  There is, and will be for a while, a requirement for a human sitting behind the wheel ready to take control if needed.

The big tell is the data that Tesla will gather over the next 1+ years as they release hundreds of thousands of EVs with self-driving systems operating 'behind' the human driver.  Tesla will be able to see if there are times that the human driver avoided an accident when the self-driving system wouldn't have and vice versa. 

The lawyers are going to make sure that the auto companies are ready to operate as self-insurers so that they can afford what accidents do happen.  No one expects 100% safety. 

Archimid

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1712 on: April 21, 2017, 05:14:34 PM »
The problem with self-driving cars, software quality:

“Nobody has a software engineering methodology today that can ensure systems perform safely in complex applications, particularly in systems with a really low tolerance for faults, such as driving,”

Being a retired software executive, I can attest to this. If google messes up your search request it doesn't get you (and others possibly) killed. The possible interactions of millions of cars, using many different software suppliers and interacting with human-driven cars, will be an incredibly complex problem to manage. Extensive use will be many, many years away and also a gift for the lawyers.

https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/deadly-tesla-crash-exposes-confusion-over-automated-driving/

The AI does not have to be perfect. That is impossible. It only has to be better than human drivers and that is most certainly posible.
I am an energy reservoir seemingly intent on lowering entropy for self preservation.

TerryM

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1713 on: April 21, 2017, 05:29:43 PM »
If people in general reject personal car ownership.


If self driving cars make car accidents newsworthy.


If electric cars have fewer moving (wearing) parts.


Car companies will build out the market, then most will close their doors.
Warranty work won't keep the assembly lines running. Many large markets are shrinking, and those that are expanding are the least able to afford the latest Wizzer Delux.


Many regions rely on the auto industry - there will be tremendous opposition to this change.


Terry

Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1714 on: April 21, 2017, 06:13:56 PM »
Car companies will build out the market, then most will close their doors.

Yes, I think this will happen.  I think GM bought Lyft (and possibly pulled out of Europe) because they see this coming and are planning on transitioning to a robotaxi company that builds its own taxis.


there will be tremendous opposition to this change.

Yes, but the change will happen. 

Where are yesterday's small hardwares, grocery stores, building material stores, office supply stores?  Most gone to large chain and big box stores.  And those are losing out to Amazon.

The coal industry is collapsing.  People are trying to oppose it but it's a losing battle. 

I think we're in the process of making the cost of everything almost zero.  It won't happen overnight, might take 100 years or so, but we seem to be on route where robots will build, manufacture and grow everything we need.  Including robots building those robots.

I think there's a thread here about what sort of economic system might work for distributing goods and services once human labor has no value.

TerryM

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1715 on: April 21, 2017, 07:00:35 PM »

I think there's a thread here about what sort of economic system might work for distributing goods and services once human labor has no value.


~95,000,000 Americans seem to already have reached the point where their labor is without value.
But you are right this is swinging OT.


At some point TPTB will decide that I've become a hazard behind the wheel, and I'll acquiesce to their demands. Until that time I'll be the aged oldster that appreciates fast flowing air through his whitened locks.  Top down, radio up, and pedal to the metal.
A Zoomer in the best sense.
Terry

Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1716 on: April 21, 2017, 08:49:57 PM »
Looking at your picture (if it's you and if it's somewhat recent) I'd guess we're about the same age.

I used to love driving.  Loved sports cars (real sport cars, not Detroit four-seaters).  But the days of being able to blast along almost deserted roads are largely gone.  And age is starting to bite me in the butt.  On drives that go for five hours or more I often need to stop for a short nap.  And find driving freeways really boring.

I'm hoping that my next car will be able to drive itself.  Driving is not something I really need to do any longer and within a decade may not be able to, safely.  I'd be really fine with a robotaxi that I could just call up when I need a ride.  I don't need to have several thousand dollars tied up in a machine that sits idle 98% of the time.

TerryM

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1717 on: April 21, 2017, 09:54:23 PM »
Unfortunately the photo's about 10 years old, taken when when I was Peacefully Protesting Proroguing Parliament.


I'll be 71 in a few months & it was a life lived fast, and sometimes hard. I'm not doing as well as my peers here in Canada, but damn near everyone I knew in the States is pushing up daisies. Decent doctors make a huge difference, although to be fair Las Vegas had one of the worst health care systems in the Excited States, and that's where most of my compatriots died.


My father had a friend that never learned to drive. He lived ~1 mile from his business and had a cab pick him up, then drop him in the evening. Probably saved himself a fortune, but what could he spend it on that would be more fun than a daily drive? Dad said he would drive a bike to his factory, but that it wouldn't have been accepted behavior from one of the local nabobs.


I got my license at 15 and have driven everything from dirt bikes to dirt movers, sports cars to semis, and I love my time on the road.


I'd prefer taking a wheel chair to the car than walking to a cab.


Terry

Sigmetnow

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1718 on: April 22, 2017, 03:43:30 AM »
Even turning back the EPA fuel standards in the U.S. won't save GM's global sales.  And, they are saying here that building EVs is possible for them, the opposite of what they claimed in their letter to the EPA.  ::)

GM turns to China for electric vehicle production
Matt Tsien, president of GM China, made the announcement during a news conference at the Shanghai auto show. AP reported:

“He said GM expects annual sales of 150,000 electric and hybrid cars in China by 2020 and possibly in excess of 500,000 by 2025.”
(Note that tiny [by comparison] Tesla will be making 500,000 pure EVs a year by 2018.)

In China, automakers need electric vehicles to represent at least 8% of their sales in 2018, 10% in 2019 and 12% in 2020.

Last year, GM sold almost 4 million vehicles in China, which means that if they want to follow the requirements, they will have to sell more EVs in China in 2019 alone than they have cumulatively around the world over the past decade.
https://electrek.co/2017/04/21/gm-china-all-electric-vehicle-production/
People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it.

Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1719 on: April 22, 2017, 03:52:01 AM »
(Note that tiny [by comparison] Tesla will be making 500,000 pure EVs a year by 2018.)

Tiny Tesla's net worth is now greater than GM's.  That means that investors expect Tesla to eat GM's lunch.

If the EV-olution happens and happens rapidly I wonder how quickly the legacy car manufacturers can turn things around?  Right now they aren't building up their battery supply line.  And they've done almost nothing to solve their rapid charging problem.

DrTskoul

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1720 on: April 22, 2017, 04:11:49 AM »
(Note that tiny [by comparison] Tesla will be making 500,000 pure EVs a year by 2018.)

Tiny Tesla's net worth is now greater than GM's.  That means that investors expect Tesla to eat GM's lunch.

If the EV-olution happens and happens rapidly I wonder how quickly the legacy car manufacturers can turn things around?  Right now they aren't building up their battery supply line.  And they've done almost nothing to solve their rapid charging problem.

Tesla will eat GM's lunch?...
“You can know the name of a bird in all the languages of the world, but when you're finished, you'll know absolutely nothing whatever about the bird... So let's look at the bird and see what it's doing -- that's what counts.”
― Richard P. Feynman

Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1721 on: April 22, 2017, 04:31:20 AM »
Here's what I think will happen over the next decade.

EV batteries will continue to fall in price until it will be cheaper to purchase a long range EV than to buy an ICEV.  Operating costs will obviously be better.  Comfort and convenience will help drive the market to EVs.

Self-driving will be perfected.  That will create fleets of robotaxis. The result will be a major decrease in car ownership.  Ownership could easily fall by 50%.    Possibly closer to 75%.  That will mean a great collapse for ICEV manufacturers.

If Tesla continues on the route it is now on they will have the best brand name in the world.  They'll have the cars, the charging system, the self-driving technology.  Tesla will be building "into" the market.  Large manufacturers like GM will be rapidly downsizing and probably will have a lot of debt to service with very diminished revenue.

I expect several car manufacturers to have their own "Kodak moment" in which they don't shift technology rapidly enough and get left holding the bag.

That's what I'm guessing the future to look at right now.  Of course conditions change so we won't be sure how things will play out until they do.

Must be that another bunch of people have a story something like mine.  Tesla now has a higher net worth (based on stock prices).  Someone's betting heavily on Tesla. 



TerryM

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« Reply #1722 on: April 22, 2017, 04:59:54 AM »
Wasn't AOL worth more than just about everything in the market at one point?


Not to negate your point, but the market can be fickle.


Terry

Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1723 on: April 22, 2017, 05:34:13 AM »
I don't recall AOL's history but, yes, the future is hard to predict.  That's why I don't buy individual stock.

Web service companies can get killed off pretty much overnight.  Remember MySpace? 

Tesla certainly could fall on its butt at some point.  But so far they've had an impressive run. 

TerryM

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« Reply #1724 on: April 22, 2017, 06:08:33 AM »
AOL Bought Time Warner for $165B, then reality set in.


I don't carry individual stocks & I limit my exposure to the market to <5% of my net. A friend invests in collectible cars and laughs at the rest of us. If I was still willing to work at making money it's something I'd look into.


Musk is on a roll, but high flyers often singe their wings.


Terry

rboyd

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1725 on: April 22, 2017, 10:18:59 PM »
Nortel made telecommunications equipment - a darling of the .com bubble.

"At their peak, in August of 2000, Nortel shares hit $124.5, or $1,245 a share after factoring in the company's 10:1 stock consolidation." Huge weighting on the Toronto Stock Exchange. In 2009 they were worth $0.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/streetwise/its-official-nortel-shares-are-worthless/article786961/

Cisco survived, its share price is still well below the bubble days. The industry didn't go away, the companies were simply way overvalued, and/or were not truly competitive business models.

Tesla has not been tested, as it keeps living on new debt and equity injections. If it stumbles badly, that liquidity could dry up very rapidly. Also, still a tiny output of cars supplied to a niche market.

oren

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1726 on: April 22, 2017, 10:33:35 PM »
Should Tesla indeed deliver 500k cars in 2018, or something close to that, all will be well. I am keeping my fingers crossed. But should they fail hard, I am afraid of a major reversal in the drive towards EVs, and potentially a long delay. The traditional automakers might be very happy to give this a quiet burial. A lot is hanging on Tesla and Musk here, which is why I am worried by Musk's seeming dispersion into various ventures which are possibly draining money and increasing the overall risk.

Bob Wallace

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« Reply #1727 on: April 22, 2017, 11:56:42 PM »
When Tesla looks in their rear view mirror they see no one gaining on them.  Nissan and GM are way back behind and showing no significant acceleration.

If we look at the failure of Blackberry, MySpace, and pre-Google browsers we see someone coming to market with a superior product at a comparable price and the previous King of the Mountain wasn't able to adapt fast enough.

Toyota has just announced that they will have a long range EV ready by 2020.  They have not yet talked about battery source, rapid charging systems, or self-driving capability.  GM has a 200 mile EV but not the battery supply train to allow 500,000 vehicles per year nor a way to rapidly charge their EVs.

If the giants are willing to toss some major money into EVs then they probably could catch up with Tesla in a few years.  But I see no sign that that's being considered.  And I see no sign that many of the smaller manufacturers are considering making bold moves.

I worry a little bit about Musk having too many ongoing projects but I suspect he's very good at monitoring his projects.  And I assume he's pretty good at picking the people who actually run each project.  I hope he doesn't overextend.

I suspect Musk has an advantage over other companies in all his fields.  Tesla, SpaceX and the others are highly innovative and fast moving.  That attracts talent.  Who wants to work for NASA which hardly has a space program any longer when SpaceX is launching, landing and recovering first stage rockets and is on the way to Mars with people?  What person who is in the EV area wants to work for a traditional car company where most of the effort goes into ICEVs when Tesla is ripping off into the cutting edge?

Bright, competent people want to work where stuff is happening.  Where innovation thrives.  Who wants to spend their days designing a window for the 2018 Gasmobile?

Sigmetnow

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« Reply #1728 on: April 23, 2017, 04:23:11 PM »
This chapter of the "Tesla Disrupts Different" paper examines the billions of dollars of assets that traditional automakers have tied up in ICE vehicles -- which would be worthless the moment they publicly acknowledged ICE is dead.  Which is why they cannot quickly switch to EV's, even if they wanted to.

Tesla Disrupts Different
Why Tesla's Selective Dominance is Inevitable
http://tesla.dauger.com/disrupts/incumbentsshackles.html
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1729 on: April 23, 2017, 04:28:43 PM »
“Herbert Diess, the global VW brand boss, has said the maker will no longer offer diesel models in the U.S.”

Volkswagen Slapped With Largest Ever Fine for Automakers
A federal judge in Detroit Friday signed off on what could be one of the last big developments in the Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal, ordering the German maker to pay a $2.8 billion criminal penalty negotiated as part of a settlement with the U.S. Justice Department last January.

The ruling now brings to around $30 billion the costs VW will incur after being caught rigging two of its diesel engines to pass U.S. emissions tests — a figure that includes the price of buying back almost 500,000 vehicles sold in the country. Meanwhile, seven current and former Volkswagen employees have been charged with crimes connected to the scandal, while an investigation continues in Germany.
...
The scam was apparently launched when Volkswagen engineers failed to come up with an effective technical solution that would allow them to deliver diesel vehicles that were both quick and fuel-efficient while also meeting tough emissions standards.
...
http://www.nbcnews.com/business/autos/judge-approves-largest-fine-u-s-history-volkswagen-n749406
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Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1730 on: April 23, 2017, 07:03:24 PM »
This chapter of the "Tesla Disrupts Different" paper examines the billions of dollars of assets that traditional automakers have tied up in ICE vehicles -- which would be worthless the moment they publicly acknowledged ICE is dead.  Which is why they cannot quickly switch to EV's, even if they wanted to.

Tesla Disrupts Different
Why Tesla's Selective Dominance is Inevitable
http://tesla.dauger.com/disrupts/incumbentsshackles.html


If Tesla is right those investments are approaching "worthless" now.  There will still be some revenue, but it will shrink and not grow.

Failure to launch into a strong EV program is risking the rest of the company.  Robotaxis may cut demand by 50%  or more.  In addition to the impact of robotaxis demand for new vehicles will likely be lowered because EVs should have a longer lifespan and collision avoidance systems will greatly lower the number of cars that are destroyed before they are worn out.

Tesla, I suspect, will expand as much as they feel the market will support.  Nissan and Renault seem to be willing to go all EV if demand continues to grow.  I get the feeling that VW is about to start their move.  Any company that doesn't start moving fast risks being left out and going out of business.

rboyd

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1731 on: April 24, 2017, 02:06:10 AM »
There are about 17.5 million light vehicles sold in the US alone each year. U.S. sales of EV's were 160,000 in 2016 (more than half in California, helped by the Zero Emissions Mandate). That's less than a 1% share. Worldwide EV sales were about 780,000, global light vehicle sales were 88.1 million in 2016. Also less than a 1% share.

If the 32% US EV 2012-2016 sales growth rate was sustained, EV's would be 10% of all light vehicles sales by 2025 and 40% by 2030. Maintaining such a high growth rate would be a phenomenal achievement, especially given the challenges that such growth would provide for battery, material and other suppliers, plus infrastructure needs. The Union of Concerned Scientists are a little more conservative w.r.t. growth rates.

This is light vehicles sales, not light vehicles on the road. Even at 100% of all sales, EV's would take another decade to remove all ICE light vehicles. The ICE producers may well have the time to write off their current investments, unless there will be a reduction in car sales. The oil producers would be in a never-ending depression though.

http://insideevs.com/monthly-plug-in-sales-scorecard/
http://www.businessinsider.com/2016-was-a-record-breaking-year-for-global-car-sales-and-it-was-almost-entirely-driven-by-china-2017-1
http://blog.ucsusa.org/peter-oconnor/what-electric-vehicle-sales-in-2016-mean-for-the-future-of-transportation


Bob Wallace

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« Reply #1732 on: April 24, 2017, 03:36:14 AM »
If the 32% US EV 2012-2016 sales growth rate was sustained, EV's would be 10% of all light vehicles sales by 2025 and 40% by 2030.

I suspect EVs will get a higher than 40% market share by 2030.  Imagine going to your car dealer.  There are two almost identical cars on the floor and both match your needs/desires.  Difference is, one of the is cheaper to buy, cheaper to operate, more convenient to operate, and gives a more comfortable ride. 

You think that in 2030 over 50% of all buyers will pick the more expensive, more expensive to operate, less convenient and less comfortable?

I think the market mix in 2030 will be largely determined by how rapidly manufacturing can switch to EVs.  I think it will be supply limited, not demand limited.

It will take probably a decade and a half to get most ICEVs off the road after the market goes 100% EV but the impact of EVs on oil usage will be faster.  About half of all US driving is done with cars five years old or less.  Old cars generally are used as little as possible.

That 50%, <5 years ratio will likely tip further toward EV purchases.  The more you drive, the more you spend on fuel and maintenance.  That suggests to me that people who drive a lot will probably switch to an EV a year or years sooner than if they were going to buy a new ICEV.

Sigmetnow

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« Reply #1733 on: April 25, 2017, 02:34:32 PM »
Sign of the times.  Yes, it's OK to make use of fossil fuels to help rid the world of fossil fuel use.  But....

Me: going to DC this weekend-wanna come?

Him: why DC?

Me: to join the #ClimateMarch!

H: driving down in yr 12mpg SUV?

M:

H:

M: so no?
https://twitter.com/mamattolly/status/856840605326069760
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Sigmetnow

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« Reply #1734 on: April 26, 2017, 01:36:50 AM »
I wonder if this is just a "car" thing, or if it is a sign of the beginning of an economic downturn in the U.S., after a near-record number of years of growth?

Despite record levels of incentives, cars are sitting on dealers' lots for longer than any month since July 2009.

Cars are sitting on the lot longer, even as dealers sweeten their offers
...The latest numbers from showrooms are not pretty. Through April 16, the average incentive for a new vehicle was $3,499 — a record for the month, according to the report. The previous record of $3,393 was set in April 2009.
...
http://www.cnbc.com/2017/04/25/cars-are-sitting-on-the-lot-longer-even-as-dealers-sweeten-the-offers.html
« Last Edit: April 26, 2017, 01:42:29 AM by Sigmetnow »
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Bob Wallace

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Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« Reply #1735 on: April 26, 2017, 01:53:15 AM »
I wonder if this is just a "car" thing, or if it is a sign of the beginning of an economic downturn in the U.S., after a near-record number of years of growth?

Perhaps the pent-up desire for a new car which was created during the Great Recession and recovery has been satiated.  Now sales will slow back down to something more like the replacement rate.

(I'd like to say that it's because everyone is waiting for their Tesla 3 but that would be a push.  ;o)

I suspect we may see a bit of a slowdown in the overall economy.  Especially if Republicans can't make a large cut in corporate tax rates.  If that happens then people may have to accept the fact that Trump is unlikely to accomplish anything meaningful during his term.  The Obama momentum will be used up.

Bob Wallace

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« Reply #1736 on: April 26, 2017, 02:21:49 AM »
Just saw this.  A little off topic but germane to our previous exchange. 


With President Donald Trump working overtime this week to come up with a tax cut wish list for Congress — including a massive cut to the top corporate tax rate — the senior tax counsel for House Leader Paul Ryan (R-WI) declared Trump’s plans dead before it has ever even been submitted.

According to a report from the Wall Street Journal, Trump’s proposal would slash the top corporate rate down to 15 percent and would primarily benefit, “professionals that organize themselves in an LLC or partnership. Doctors, lawyers, consultants, lobbyists.”

Speaking at an international finance summit last week, Ryan’s tax law specialist George Callas called out Trump’s plan for a massive tax cut without offsetting cuts to pay for it a “magic unicorn.”

http://www.rawstory.com/2017/04/its-a-not-a-real-thing-watch-paul-ryans-senior-tax-counsel-blow-up-trumps-magic-unicorn-tax-plan/



This is the Republicans in Congress saying that there's going to be no corporate tax cut at this time.  I expect to see the stock market deflate a bit.  People are going to feel a bit less wealthy.  And large purchases like cars could slow.

Add in Trump's backing off on his insistence on funding his wall and I can see a malaise spreading over  those who were anticipating a great boost to business in America.  The Great Infrastructure Program seems to have slipped out of sight. 

Trump and the other Republicans are pretty much dysfunctional right now.  Can they figure out how to govern over the next year or so?  Jury's out.  My guess is not.

jai mitchell

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« Reply #1737 on: April 26, 2017, 06:02:30 AM »
Tesla has announced they will be revealing their EV-Semi for large freight transport.  The economics of this are VERY favorable and this article shows that this will be a complete industry game changer.

https://electrek.co/2017/04/20/tesla-semi-leasing-batteries-electric-truck/

Tesla Semi: analysts see Tesla leasing batteries for $0.25/miles in 300,000 electric trucks for $7.5 billion in revenue

Morgan Stanley came out today with a detailed note exploring the business of Tesla Semi and the analysts, Adam Jonas, who covers Tesla for the firm, and Ravi Shanker, a logistic analyst, believe that Tesla will go with a battery leasing model.

They see Tesla releasing a truck with a relatively short-range for a semi truck ~200 to 300 miles, but they could use battery swap stations to quickly swap the batteries for charged ones and get the vehicles quickly back on the road.

“This makes economic sense for TSLA, in our view. We estimate that a trucking carrier spends about $0.50 per mile of fuel (@ $3/gal of diesel and 6 mpg) and does about 100,000 miles/year per truck. If Tesla charged $0.25/mile to lease the battery out, (a) the carrier can reduce its total fuel bill by 50% (fuel is 35% of total costs), and (b) TSLA could generate revenue of $25,000 per truck per year or ~$7.5 bn at a run-rate, once TSLA achieves 10% share of the truck parc. If we consider the fact that the powertrain in Class-8 trucks today is about 50% of the $150,000 cost of a new tractor, the $75,000 savings in buying a truck without a powertrain would be worth almost $0.20/mile over the life of the truck ($75,000 / 4 years avg. life cycle * 100,000 miles/yr for public TL carrier). With this in mind, TSLA could charge as much as $0.45/mile and the truck carrier would still save 50% in fuel costs (but with equal purchase cost vs. today). With the 1 mile/kWh range as assumed earlier, to give a truck a 250-300 mile range would need a 250-300 kWh battery which we assume would cost TSLA approx. $25,000-30,000 each (@$100/kWh).”
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Bob Wallace

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« Reply #1738 on: April 26, 2017, 06:27:07 AM »
Not only save half on fuel costs but a fortune on oil changes and brake rebuilds.
--

Looking forward to seeing if Tesla does go with battery swapping for its big trucks.  I've thought that the solution for a long time now.  Battery swaps, done right, can happen fast.  And Tesla tends to do things the right way.

Tesla's self-driving software and battery powered semi tractors along with rapid battery swapping (five minutes off the road every 3-4 hours).  The trucking industry is going to change.
---

Elon also listened to me about 200 miles being enough for the first generation of long distance EVs.  He had been pushing for 300.    ;o)

Sigmetnow

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« Reply #1739 on: April 26, 2017, 03:57:38 PM »
Tesla receives massive shipment of robots for Model 3 production line – first pictures
Less than 3 months away from the planned start of Model 3 production, Tesla has received a massive order of robots for its production line. Hundreds of Kuka robots arrived at Tesla’s Fremont factory and are now being installed.

Pictures of the robots inside the factory give us a rare glimpse at what Elon Musk has been describing as an ‘Alien Dreadnought’.

Musk said that his goal is for the factory to look more “alien” than a factory.

He emphasized that the first version of the Model 3 production line will only be a “version 0.5” of the “alien dreadnought”, but the line will get updated with more automation and he envisions a “version 3” in a few more years:

“By version 3, it won’t look like anything else. You can’t have people in the production line itself, otherwise you drop to people speed. So there will be no people in production process itself. People will maintain the machines, upgrade them, and deal with anomalies.”

The CEO has been focused on the speed of production over the past year. He says that Model S and X production move at about five centimeters per second on the line, but he sees an opportunity for a 20-fold increase in production speed for the Model 3 in Fremont – or “at least one meter per second.”
...
https://electrek.co/2017/04/25/tesla-model-3-robot-production-line-pictures/

Link has a cool video of Tesla robots in action.
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Bob Wallace

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« Reply #1740 on: April 26, 2017, 05:16:47 PM »
Tesla receives massive shipment of robots for Model 3 production line – first pictures
Less than 3 months away from the planned start of Model 3 production, Tesla has received a massive order of robots for its production line. Hundreds of Kuka robots arrived at Tesla’s Fremont factory and are now being installed.

Pictures of the robots inside the factory give us a rare glimpse at what Elon Musk has been describing as an ‘Alien Dreadnought’.

Musk said that his goal is for the factory to look more “alien” than a factory.

He emphasized that the first version of the Model 3 production line will only be a “version 0.5” of the “alien dreadnought”, but the line will get updated with more automation and he envisions a “version 3” in a few more years:

“By version 3, it won’t look like anything else. You can’t have people in the production line itself, otherwise you drop to people speed. So there will be no people in production process itself. People will maintain the machines, upgrade them, and deal with anomalies.”

The CEO has been focused on the speed of production over the past year. He says that Model S and X production move at about five centimeters per second on the line, but he sees an opportunity for a 20-fold increase in production speed for the Model 3 in Fremont – or “at least one meter per second.”
...
https://electrek.co/2017/04/25/tesla-model-3-robot-production-line-pictures/

Link has a cool video of Tesla robots in action.

Video - Yes.  Needs to be seen.  You don't want snail-speed humans anywhere in that manufacturing flow.

TerryM

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« Reply #1741 on: April 26, 2017, 05:26:33 PM »
BobW


A long haul driver used to eat breakfast, then drive ~2:30 till a stop for coffee, another 2:30 for lunch, then 2:30 for coffee, followed by 2:30 until dinner and bunking down for the night. At 50 miles per hour avg. he'd make 500 miles/day in the 10 hours allotted.
If a quick battery swap can be done during coffee time all that's required is a >125 mile battery life. If it takes more than 15 minutes >250 miles works well.
A 200 mile battery won't cause too great a disruption of the normal way trucking is done as long as swap stations are available every 125 miles from major destinations, and the swap can be done in 15 minutes or less.


If self driving trucks take over any consideration for the comfort of the driver is mute.


Personally I'd rather see long haul moving to fast electric rail service, freeing the roadways, and speeding deliveries. China is already Beta testing the concept.


Terry

Sigmetnow

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« Reply #1742 on: April 26, 2017, 05:27:39 PM »
"You don't want snail-speed humans anywhere in that manufacturing flow."

Yes.  And if someone thinks the era of robots taking over complex jobs is decades away... think again.
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Sigmetnow

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« Reply #1743 on: April 26, 2017, 05:32:28 PM »
Trump’s EPA policies risk more Alzheimer’s cases, doctors warn
Two new studies support findings that polluted air causes dementia.
...
The other key study released last month was published in the journal Lancet and found “living close to heavy traffic was associated with a higher incidence of dementia.”

Canadian researchers found that those living within 50 meters (160 feet) of high-traffic roads “had a seven percent higher likelihood of developing dementia compared to those who lived more than 300 meters (984 feet) away from busy roads.”

The air near major roads has been found to have particulate levels 10 times greater than the air just a few hundred feet away.

Given the devastating impact that dementia has on individuals and families — not to mention the enormous economic costs — this evidence suggests the country should tighten Clean Air rules for fossil fuel plants, especially coal plants.

Since even low levels of the smallest particles are dangerous to humans, Trump’s plans to kill the Clean Power Plan and gut the EPA’s ability to enforce Clean Air rules are even more cruel and immoral than they first appeared.
...
https://thinkprogress.org/trumps-epa-policies-risk-more-alzheimer-s-cases-doctors-warn-ea826400c03a
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Bob Wallace

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« Reply #1744 on: April 26, 2017, 05:49:51 PM »
BobW


A long haul driver used to eat breakfast, then drive ~2:30 till a stop for coffee, another 2:30 for lunch, then 2:30 for coffee, followed by 2:30 until dinner and bunking down for the night. At 50 miles per hour avg. he'd make 500 miles/day in the 10 hours allotted.
If a quick battery swap can be done during coffee time all that's required is a >125 mile battery life. If it takes more than 15 minutes >250 miles works well.
A 200 mile battery won't cause too great a disruption of the normal way trucking is done as long as swap stations are available every 125 miles from major destinations, and the swap can be done in 15 minutes or less.


If self driving trucks take over any consideration for the comfort of the driver is mute.


Personally I'd rather see long haul moving to fast electric rail service, freeing the roadways, and speeding deliveries. China is already Beta testing the concept.


Terry

Let's assume Tesla does deliver a "200" mile range battery powered truck this fall or early next year.   

I have to believe that they will install the necessary sensors and processing system for self-driving even if they're not quite ready to make the trucks self-driving.  That's what they are doing with the Model 3.  A year or two should allow the truck to self-drive in most or all conditions.

And they can build out a basic battery swap system along a few major travel routes within a year.  Or they decide on rapid chargers and install some very high amperage 'Super-Super Chargers' for trucks.

I suspect they will sell the trucks as fast as they can make them.  Trucking companies will buy them simply for fuel and maintenance savings. 

If the self-driving system works then we'll see an extremely rapid transition off diesel for hauling.  Fuel, maintenance, and labor savings will send a lot of still usable diesel rigs to the recycler.
--

I agree that using rail makes a lot of sense.  As we free up rail space by eliminating coal and petroleum cars from our rails perhaps we'll see more rail shipping.  It should be more energy efficient (steel on steel, no speed changes due to cars disrupting the flow, more gradual grades and curves).  Shipping by rail would free up highways for cars.  And it would decrease damage to our roadways.

TerryM

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« Reply #1745 on: April 26, 2017, 06:04:48 PM »
I worked for Chrysler as a teen, then toured a Toyota factory a few years back. The percentage of work done by robots now is amazing.


Each model year everything has to be set up, re-calibrated, adjusted and tweaked.

If we eliminated yearly model changes, similar to what VW was doing decades ago, the cost of manufacturing would be cut, incremental improvements to the vehicle & the production line could be done in a timely manner, and people would have fewer reason to buy a new Wizzer Delux. Even replacing last years EV with the latest model EV adds to our carbon footprint. Why encourage consumerism?


Terry

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« Reply #1746 on: April 26, 2017, 08:07:08 PM »
If we go (largely) robotaxi, which is what I think will happen, the annual model stuff will disappear.  Major changes will be made only when really important.

It will be like the London black cabs and old US Checker cabs that stayed the same year after year.  It will come down to function, not ego.
--

Tesla is operating on the tweak it system.  I couldn't tell the difference between a 2012 and a 2017 Model S.  I know there have been some changes but not like one sees with other manufacturers.

Sigmetnow

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« Reply #1747 on: April 27, 2017, 12:11:54 AM »
...

Tesla is operating on the tweak it system.  I couldn't tell the difference between a 2012 and a 2017 Model S.  I know there have been some changes but not like one sees with other manufacturers.

Right.  Tesla makes lots of little production improvements every week.  Service folks have to look up the car's VIN on their system to see what was actually installed....   There are "refreshes" and "upgrades", but nothing like the planned model-year changes of other car companies. 
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TerryM

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« Reply #1748 on: April 27, 2017, 12:38:24 AM »
While we are discussing the pros and cons of driverless cabs, the residents of Phoenix are trying them out - For free !!


https://mishtalk.com/2017/04/26/naysayer-reality-check-waymos-self-driving-taxi-debuts-in-phoenix-for-free/


Terry

Sigmetnow

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« Reply #1749 on: April 27, 2017, 12:42:39 AM »
Seeing more and more articles on this topic.  My thought is, like many other things, reduced subsidies for EVs may slow, but will not stop, EV adoption.  Remember, U.S. subsidies do not end once a manufacturer sells 200,000 cars, and the amount does not suddenly drop from $7,500 to $0.  Besides, price parity with ICE vehicles is just around the corner.

The Electric Car Revolution Now Faces Its Biggest Test
Will people still buy them when the subsidies are gone?
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-04-24/the-electric-car-revolution-tesla-began-faces-its-biggest-test
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