Transportation


Lyft offers self-driving car rides in Boston

Daily Mail

The ride-hailing company Lyft is now sending self-driving cars to pick up passengers in a Boston neighborhood. The cars will have backup human drivers at the wheel and will be limited to short routes within the city's Seaport District, a burgeoning tech startup hub. Lyft and its Boston-based partner nuTonomy, which builds self-driving software, announced Wednesday that the pilot project has begun. The Renault Zoe EVs will be limited to short routes within the city's Seaport District The cars will initially be a small number of Renault Zoe EVs, which Nutonomy began road-testing in Boston starting last November. Nutonomy engineers are already working on integrating Lyft software into'a couple of' vehicles, to be deployed sometime'in the coming months,' for actual customer pickups, though no more specific timeline was given.


Apple might test self-driving cars at this track

Mashable

Apple's self-driving car project might have a new test site. The company is leasing an Arizona proving ground to experiment with its nascent autonomous platform, according to a Jalopnik report citing a source familiar with the project. The facility in Surprise, Arizona was previously owned by Fiat Chrysler, which took advantage of the area's brutal climate to conduct tests on how heat affected its vehicles. Apple's designs for the now-empty property would be focused squarely on testing its autonomous platform, which is thought to be the main focus of the company's automotive development after the rumored work to actually produce a car, "Project Titan," reportedly shuttered last year. Tim Cook confirmed Apple's self-driving car platform earlier this year, and the company's test vehicles have reportedly been spotted on California's public roads.


Tesla sending 'golden tickets' to Model 3 customers

Daily Mail

Elon Musk has frequently admitted to the'production hell' Tesla is going through in trying to make its hugely anticipated Model 3 car. But now, it appears the end may be in sight for the firm - and for owners who put down a $1,000 deposit for the revolutionary car. The firm has begun asking customers to specify exactly what they want in the car, promising those who choose a high end model will get it this year. The'golden ticket' email that allows users to finally specify exactly what features they want in their Model 3 The new ordering site explains that only the high end car with a long range battery, rear wheel drive and premium upgrades, costing $48,000 will be made first. It says the cheaper'base vehicle' will be following in spring next year.


Lyft now has permission to test self-driving cars on California's roads

Mashable

Lyft just took a small but essential step forward in the development of its own self-driving car project. The California DMV granted the rapidly growing ride-hailing company permission to test autonomous vehicles on the state's public roads. The registration, which the DMV gives after the submission of an application and an annual $150 fee, has become a rite of passage of sorts for the various AV projects from automakers, tech companies, and startups that are currently racing to develop their own platforms. Registering with the state means that Lyft will now have to submit certain information to the DMV about its operations, most significantly an annual disengagement report detailing the number of times human operators had to take control of test vehicles. Lyft joins the likes of massive companies like Volkswagen, Waymo, Apple, and Ford with the registration, rounding out the full list of testers to 45.


Lyft wins permit to test self-driving cars in California

Daily Mail

U.S. ride-hailing firm Lyft has secured a permit to test autonomous vehicles in California, taking it one step further in the race with several other companies to bring self-driving cars to the masses. Lyft's permit, reflected on the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) website, comes two months after it announced plans to offer a self-driving car as a ride option in the San Francisco Bay Area. Lyft already has partnerships in place with autonomous car companies to advance its self-driving strategy. Ride-hailing firm Lyft Inc said on Monday it would launch its service in Toronto, marking the first international expansion for the U.S.-based rival of Uber Technologies Inc. Ford self-driving test vehicles will be connected to Lyft's network, but at first, customers will not be able to use them, according to Sherif Marakby, Ford's vice president for autonomous vehicles and electrification.


Elon Musk Reveals Tesla's Electric Semitruck

WIRED

Elon Musk has always dreamed big, and tonight he showed off his biggest reverie yet: the fully electric Tesla Semi. Powered by a massive battery, it's capable of hauling 80,000 pounds. It'll even drive itself--on the highway, at least. The big rig, which Musk unveiled at Tesla's design center in Hawthorne, California Thursday night, is just the latest step in his mission to make humanity forget about planet-killing fossil fuels and embrace the gospel of electric power. That is, of course, if he can convince the trucking industry it's time for a new way of moving stuff around--and if he can actually make the thing.


Here are all the companies besides Tesla that are building trucks of the future

Mashable

Tesla will reveal its semi-truck design tonight in a highly anticipated event in Hawthorne, California, reaching another goal in founder Elon Musk's "Master Plan" for the company. The semi is the automaker's first shot at disrupting the trucking industry in the same way it brought all-electric cars to the forefront of the consumer auto conversation -- but Tesla won't be alone in its attempt to bring electric, autonomous big rigs to the world's highways. There are multiple next-gen trucking projects in the works from all manner of players, from fledgling startups with one killer concept to major conglomerates launching new brands. Some of the ventures focus on creating all-electric powertrains for heavy-duty vehicles, while others add self-driving features and new fleet logistics systems to standard rigs -- but they all want to shake up the trucking industry. SEE ALSO: Elon Musk rips the press for'ridiculous' coverage of Tesla firings Before Musk takes the stage at 8 p.m. Pacific on Thursday (or jumps on top of his new rig or whatever he winds up doing), lets take a look at a few of the other most exciting trucks in development that could change the way we haul cargo.


California may limit liability of self-driving carmakers

Daily Mail

California regulators are embracing a General Motors recommendation that would help makers of self-driving cars avoid paying for accidents and other trouble, raising concerns that the proposal will put an unfair burden on vehicle owners. If adopted, the regulations drafted by the California Department of Motor Vehicles would protect these carmakers from lawsuits in cases where vehicles haven't been maintained according to manufacturer specifications. That could open a loophole for automakers to skirt responsibility for accidents, injuries and deaths caused by defective autonomous vehicles, said Armand Feliciano, vice president for the Association of California Insurance Companies. The regulations drafted by the California DMV would protect carmakers from lawsuits in cases where their self driving vehicles haven't been maintained according to manufacturer specifications. The regulations drafted by the California Department of Motor Vehicles would protect these carmakers from lawsuits in cases where vehicles haven't been maintained according to manufacturer specifications.


Tesla reports biggest-ever quarterly loss, Model 3 delays

Daily Mail

Tesla racked up a $619 million loss in the third quarter, its biggest-ever, driving its shares sharply lower as the electric-car maker spends to speed up production of its more affordable Model 3 sedan. The company, led by Silicon Valley star Elon Musk, also confirmed it had missed its Model 3 production goal for the third quarter, producing only 260 vehicles compared to an earlier estimate of 1,500. Its shares fell 5.4 percent in after hours trading. The company said it had $3.53 billion in cash and cash-equivalents as of Sept. 30, compared to $3.04 billion at the end of the second quarter. Tesla said last month it delivered 26,150 vehicles in the third quarter, a 4.5 percent rise on the same period of 2016, but added that "production bottlenecks" had left the company behind its planned ramp-up for the $35,000 Model 3. On Wednesday it said it now hoped to achieve a production rate of 5,000 per month by the end of the first quarter of next year, pushed back from the end of this year.


Alphabet looks to snowy Michigan to test self-driving cars

Daily Mail

Alphabet Inc's self-driving car unit Waymo is expanding winter testing as it works to address a potential blind spot for autonomous vehicles: snowy and icy conditions. Waymo said Thursday that Michigan is the sixth state where the self-driving car project will test autonomous vehicles. The company chose the state to see how vehicles will respond in snow, sleet, and ice. Alphabet Inc's self-driving car unit Waymo is expanding winter testing as it works to address a potential blind spot for autonomous vehicles: snowy and icy conditions. Waymo has been testing vehicles in Texas, Arizona, Washington State, Nevada and California and starts in Michigan next week on public roads with a backup safety driver sitting in the driver seat if necessary.