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The 5 biggest questions we still have about the Tesla Semi

Mashable

Tesla finally unveiled its heavy-duty, all-electric Semi truck, and we're impressed. The big rig is the sum of all of the automaker's work in one massive package, featuring design cues from its other vehicles and even borrowing their parts, like the Model 3 motors that power each of its "super single" wheels. Musk claims the Semi will also offer truckers BAMF acceleration and performance specs, up to 500 miles of range per charge, and a cheaper cost to operate than standard diesel trucks. The Semi certainly looks the part of the next big thing for the trucking industry -- but there's still so much about it that we don't know. Elon Musk only showed off certain aspects of the truck during his presentation, leaving some very important features to be shared at a later date, when Tesla is ready to start churning out the rigs for clients.


Jaguar Land Rover tests first driverless vehicle on public roads

Daily Mail

The race to conquer the driverless car market has stepped up a gear, with the first ever tests of an autonomous vehicle built in Britain on the country's public roads. Jaguar Land Rover is leading the pack with its'major landmark' trial, which aims to help vehicles react in a similar way to people. The pilot project is part of a government-backed bid to encourage more widespread use of automated cars by 2020. The race to conquer the driverless car market has stepped up a gear, with the first ever tests of an autonomous vehicle built in Britain on the country's public roads. The UK Autodrive project is the UK's largest trial of connected and autonomous vehicle technology.


Jaguar Land Rover Tests First Driverless Vehicle on Public Roads

U.S. News

"By using inputs from multiple sensors, and finding intelligent ways to process this data, we are gaining accurate technical insight to pioneer the automotive application of these technologies," said Nick Rogers, the firm's Executive Director for Product Engineering.


'Connected' cars are hitting UK roads for the first time

Engadget

Slowly, the UK government is realising its dream of making the nation a self-driving research hub. UK Autodrive, a publicly funded consortium that includes Jaguar Land Rover, Ford and TATA Motors, has announced a new set of trials in Coventry today. They will focus on self-driving cars and vehicles that can instantly share information with other motorists and city infrastructure. Researchers will be testing a signal, for instance, that can be sent out by the emergency services -- ambulances, fire trucks and police cars -- to nearby drivers, advising them when and where to move aside. Other test features include a warning signal for intersections deemed too unsafe to cross, in-car information about accidents and traffic jams (negating the need for signs on bridges) and an alert system when a driver in front suddenly hits the brakes (the idea being that this can be hard to spot in rain and fog).


Self Driving Cars, The Most Hyped Thing Since…The Segway?

#artificialintelligence

With headlines like these, it's hard not to get excited about autonomy and self driving cars. After all, we've seen the cars in Minority Report, Total Recall, and iRobot, and thought to ourselves: "When can we finally get into those cars?" Truth be told, it may be quite a while before we're actually there. There's a general misalignment between what the public think is "fully autonomous" versus what these executives are actually saying. Elon Musk's 2018 goal is to have a self driving car that's safer than a human driver.


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.


Why Self-Driving Cars Might Not Lead to a Huge Drop In Fuel Consumption

TIME

Automated cars–once a far-off dream–have in recent years left the realm of science fiction and leapt closer to the American garage. Leading U.S. automakers say that bona fide self-driving cars are coming within two decades and they're fighting to stay competitive, from Ford's $1 billion investment in an artificial-intelligence company earlier this year to Uber's 2016 purchase of self-driving truck company Otto. These advances promise relief to drivers sick of two-hour commutes and bumper-to-bumper traffic, but they leave open questions for a society shaped for the past century around the automobile. Perhaps no area is more quantifiably uncertain than the environmental impact of automated vehicles. One report from the Department of Energy found that automated vehicles could reduce fuel consumption for passenger cars by as much as 90%, or increase it by more than 200%.


Ola Ties Up With Microsoft For Connected Car Platform - NDTV CarAndBike

#artificialintelligence

Indian ride-hailing firm Ola said it has tied up with Microsoft to build a connected-car platform and will use the U.S tech giant's Azure cloud-computing service to power its in-car entertainment offering. Microsoft is separately also in talks over a potential investment in Ola, a source told Reuters, declining to be named as the discussions are private. The new connected-vehicle platform, for cars that have internet access, will have features to aid navigation and to flag when vehicle maintenance is required, Ola said in a statement on Tuesday. "Both companies will collaborate to take this platform to car manufacturers globally to integrate with vehicle systems," Ola said, making the announcement during a visit to India by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella. Ola, which has been locked in a fierce battle with rival Uber for a bigger piece of India's $12 billion taxi market, has said it would invest in artificial intelligence and machine-learning capabilities, which include technologies like its in-car entertainment platform called Play that allows riders to choose music and stream videos.