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Juan Valdez
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Why isn't anyone talking about the cost? 5 LIDARS? Last I heard they were 3-$5,000 each, so that $15,000 - $25,000 in LIDAR, plus other tech. Probably adds 10-20k to the vehicle. I think this is a publicity stunt. Agreed it will be for testing, but they can't roll out profitable cars at this price point - but maybe they just want a jump on the competition / news cycle ( Tesla? )...
Diesel vs. Electric - read my list below, and see why electric pickups will soon rule !! 1. "Available on...." (basically all their high end trucks) vs. close to Telsa's pickup cost? 2. "Peak torque comes at just 1,750 rpm" vs. 100% peak torque at 0 rpm for electric trucks. 3. "10 speed (complicated and expensive) transmission" vs. no tranny needed for electric trucks. 4. "Auto Start-Stop also comes standard" vs. no energy used when stopped by all electric trucks. 5. "Dual fuel filters" vs. NO fuel filters on electric trucks. Complicated tech, expensive to buy, expensive to fix, just so we can continue to spew planet-killing waste every mile. Come on folks, time to switch to electrified transportation NOW..
Autonomous cars will be driving 24/7 and always be in service. Think of how much revenue a taxi running 24/7 will make? As such the price point for this type of safety feature will be less important since it can be amortized quickly. I wonder if Tesla can really succeed with cameras only, when the LIDARs are getting cheaper and more accurate. Maybe they could offer it as an upgrade?
Bolt this sucker to every gasser and we'd bankrupt big oil !! This is great tech, basically bolting an electric motor to the gas engine. Assuming this includes a beefy 48v battery, then fuel economy, esp in cities can go way up. If you make it a plug-in hybrid, depending on the battery size, you can drive most days on pure electricity. Nice...
I like 48v because it is excellent tech to support transition to fully electric cars. I would upgrade Engineer-Poet's idea of a fat alternator, to better, a motor/generator bolted to engine, that takes care of low speed and start-stop. A step up from that, would GM VOLT tech. A VOLT has two motor/generators that always drive the wheels, so no transmission. VOLT has a small battery with ~40/mile range, so no need for even a 48v system. Benefits of the VOLT setup is no transmission (wheels always driven by electric motor), and 90% of driving is fully electric. If other auto manufacturers implemented this, we'd cut 90% of gas usage overnight. BTW, I just test drove a BOLT, the new, fully electric GM car. I can tell you that it's cheap, and was rushed to market to beat Tesla. It has massive torque steer, and is very small. No over the air updates, no safety features, no cameras, no nothing. I've decided that "legacy" car companies hate electric cars and are only producing them because of Tesla.
"Trees" is right. Who made the last taxi you were last in? You didn't care, and you won't care who makes electric cars in the future, because they will be ubiquitous, autonomous, and cheap. Garages are converted for battery storage and e-bikes. Parking ramps are demolished in downtowns freeing up giga-meters of space. Streets are narrowed, as no parking needed. Air will improve dramatically. What's not to like ??
I like LiDAR for full 3-D vision, but maybe these solid-state devices will still be too expensive for low end cars? Tesla use radar and cameras, but not LiDAR, probably because LiDAR is so expensive. Best solution of course, would be to use LiDAR, with cameras and radar. Then the software can integrate these sensors so the vehicle has more reliable and complete "vision" at all times. This will be especially useful in big trucks and buses where price points are already much higher, so the extra cost won't matter much. Now, what about those Navy ships that keep getting crashed into? Seems like they need this stuff right away !!!
An OK package, like the nice, low price point. However I'm tired of being spoon fed automation. If you pay more money, the car will less likely kill you. Great. And every little safety and self-driving feature requires it own name and branding, which is tiresome. Tesla has it right, full self driving ASAP. I guess VW spends so much money on advertising and diesel scams it can't figure out this safety / autonomous driving thing..
Consumers Union is wrong here. Asking the feds to "ensure automated systems work as they’re supposed to without placing consumers at risk", seems to accept the status quo that 25,000+ "consumers" die and 250,000+ are injured each year. No, this is an emergency !! So we should wait for months and years for governments to approve this new tech?? We need massive change quickly, not more government regulations. Here, perfection is the enemy of the good, and in this case a $100 camera and software could save thousands of lives !!
As a Minnesota guy, I'm pleased to see our state taking a lead on this, even as the feds try to move back to oil and gas. However, we need to move faster to electrify all transportation, big trucks included. Long-haul trucks take standard routes so battery swaps could handle the entire trip. In town trucks could just use rechargeable and lighter batteries. In the interim, I think biodiesel and biofuel tech would be better applied to aircraft and ships, vehicles where battery power will take longer to implement. It would be easy to imagine 100% bio-fuels for aircraft and ships, while cars and trucks move immediately to electrification.
3D printing will eventually take over - think of a world where there are no warehouses and no stocking costs. Every part needed, from anything ever manufactured, by any company, could be printed and mailed to anybody at any time. Yes, it's only effective now at low volumes, but these costs will drop, and when you factor in no stocking and storage costs, the industry could eventually move most spare auto parts into "print only" availability. Nice work here MB !!
Gassers are rapidly transitioning to hybrids then to full EVs, and diesels are dead, apparently Daimler didn't get that memo. I can't believe Daimler is investing 3 billion in diesels!! Probably driven by the attorney as a defensive move. Think about the electrificiation platforms could be designed and launched with 3B. Makes you wonder about Daimlers long term viability.
1) Many major global cities are phasing out diesels and many countries are moving toward electrification of transportation. 2) The world needs a new diesel pickup truck. These are mutually exclusive goals. Come on Daimler, lead, don't follow!!
Really? This is what the world needs right now??? Another diesel pickup?? Put me in the unimpressed category..
THIS IS BIG !! This is not about the details, but about an entire, modern, trend-setting? country telling big oil THE PARTY IS OVER !! Doesn't matter exactly how this gets implemented. Smart business people will now stop investing in oil / gas, and instead they will ramp up investing in new factories, cars, renewable energy deals. This is what changes societies - Merci !!
Growing, harvesting, brewing then burning biofuels seems like a partial solution for large scale diesel motors such as ships, planes, earth movers and the like. Batteries won't suffice for many years due to weight and size. For 90% of other transportation electrification seems much more efficient. Just build solar farms and feed the grid and transportation directly. Seems a lot simpler and scalable than harvesting MASSIVE amounts of land.
I don't see much innovative here. I'm depressed that many of the safety features are excluded from lower versions - while Tesla is adding massive capabilities to all their cars. But good work on standard frontal collision warnings. VW needs more electrics and more safety or they will just fade with the other car makers. Agree with Bobcom and others that natural gas is just a slower goodbye to the planet.
20% increase in in city fuel consumption is great! This sounds like VOLT technology, repackaged without the plug-in. This is what all car companies should be doing. Seems like an easy and safe way to get electrification into consumers hands at no risk/mess/plug-in business. Nice going Buick!!
I'm a fan of modular (read small, truck transportable) nuclear generators - they are like big batteries. If this helps bring them to market faster, I'm all for it. From what I'm reading, in some SMRs the nuclear material can't be removed, the units are just shipped back to the factory when depleted. Also includes passive cooling so meltdowns can't happen. All good ideas. Tech like this, with advanced wind and solar power, plus massive battery storage, should replace 100% of dirty energy in my lifetime - hopefully !!!
Wow, a new diesel engine!! This is old tech being repackaged to squeeze some life out of a dying diesel market. Not impressed in the least. Like the 48v tho. I think all automakers should adopt it so they can peel off the old tech into electrically driven new tech, like the water pumps, alternators, air conditioning compressors, which are all better if electrically and computer controlled, as on fully electric cars.
Wow, what BS!! What I'm seeing are layers and layers of additional technology, weight and complexity for very minor improvements in efficiency. I think these products were designed by the marketing department, to be able to charge more for these "mild hybrids", while pretending to address climate change. The GM hybrids like the VOLT and related cars using the same VOLT technology are showing 20-40% improvements in gas milage. Audi's tech here is obsolete and just bolted onto existing cars. Come on Audi, you can do waayyyy better than this.
I agree that EV's will probably grow quickly, then once the charging infrastructure is in place (by Tesla, VW and others), it will "switch" within a few years to mostly electrics. I drive an electric VOLT by GM, and wouldn't consider buying an old gasser now that I'm used to lower fuel prices, and plugging in at home and never have to visit a gas station. Once enough people have the same experience as I, they will create the message that it's ok to switch. Of course the other shoe that might drop is once autonomous driving is fully enabled, people might just drop buying cars altogether and just use their UBER app on their smart phone to order (fully autonomous) cars when they need them. Then good bye 80% of car manufacturers !!
I don't see much value in coasting-off technology. Better is what Thomas said, moving to 48v with integrated starter/motor/generator. This could be a simple add-on to all their models. It seems like they have all sorts of technology solutions chasing low-value problems. Yes, they are smart technologists, but moving to full hybrid systems quickly and simply is what they should focus on, not all these other technologies.
I don't know why, but I like this 48v tech. Seems like a simple step towards full electrification, by bolting an integrated starter/generator/motor? to a standard planet-killing gasser. Immediate 15% fuel savings seems impressive. If this could be standardized, automakers could do this quickly, getting more people used to plugging in their cars and saving billions of gallons of fuel.
This is a failed attempt to solve a problem by increasing it's complexity. I think diesels are just too dirty to cost-effectively compete. Multiple reports said the VW diesel exhaust and treatment systems cost more than the engine. Once you factor in all the costs of the 48v system, multiple exhaust treatments, and other technologies, is it really going to "win" over newer purely electric and hybrid systems, especially when you factor in 20 years of maintenance?? This is dead technology getting a short-lived second wind - I'd put all my R&D into electrification.