Volkswagen’s Punishment Will Electrify America

As part of a settlement with the federal government over its diesel emissions scandal, Volkswagen will help electrify the United States of America by building charging stations and investing $2 billion in electric transportation over the next decade.

And you thought the company would get off with a slap on the wrist.

The federal government saw an opportunity to turn the scandal into something positive and ordered VW to contribute to the next generation of transportation. This could be exactly the kind of jumpstart that electric cars need, because it could conceivably allow EVs to embark on cross-country road trips without fear of running out of electrons somewhere in the middle of Wyoming.

Not that Wyoming will get a lot of attention in the project. California, not surprisingly, will benefit from some pretty major investment. The Golden State currently has more EV drivers than any other, which explains the high concentration of investment there.

In response to the court order, Volkswagen created a subsidiary called Electrify America, which will make four $500 million investments separated by 30-month periods over the next 10 years. Continue reading >>>

Lucid Motors Going Head-to-Head With Tesla

Tesla is going to have to share the road.

The electric automaker could be credited with the mainstream acceptance of EVs and has inspired many new electric cars from other automakers. (Think the Bolt would be here if Tesla wasn’t?)

New automakers ranging from Faraday Future to Lucid Motors also have Tesla to thank for paving the way. Faraday Future has been in the automotive blog-o-sphere for a while now, but you might have never heard of Lucid Motors. It’s probably time to start paying attention to them.

The California automaker has showcased the Lucid Air, an electric sedan with a starting price of $52,500 (after tax credits) and enough technology to make the Model S look like a Model T.

But how likely is Lucid to actually produce cars and challenge Elon Musk and company? Continue reading >>>

The Most Mouth-Watering Cars of the 2017 New York International Auto Show

58% of the New York International Auto Show’s attendees plan to shop for a car within 12 months. From practical options like the new Buick Regal Sportback and TourX to fan favorites like Subaru’s redesigned Outback and Crosstrek, auto shows provide an unparalleled opportunity to comparison shop. Even if you’re in the market for something a bit more exciting, such as the new Honda Civic Si or an Alfa Romeo Stelvio, the show in New York will provide an early look for interested shoppers. Continue reading >>>

Faraday’s Future in Question as Financial Fears Rise

Faraday Future still hasn’t built a car and already its death watch has begun.

Premature death isn’t necessarily uncommon or unprecedented in the auto industry. Starting a car manufacturing business is one of the hardest endeavors to begin because of the outrageous costs of entry, strict government regulations, and long timeline to profitability.

Many of the new car companies that have been attempted eventually fail. It’s a sad truth, and we’ve lost some exceptional innovation in the last century of auto manufacturing.

Faraday Future may end up on the long list of failed and forgotten car companies by the end of the decade if the company continues down the path it appears to be following. Continue reading >>>

Toyota May Have Just Made the Prius Obsolete

Trying to sell someone a hybrid car while gas prices are low is a little like selling summer clothes in Barrow, Alaska.

It might be a great concept, but if there’s not a lot of need, there won’t be a lot of sales.

Such is the case with the newest version of the Toyota Prius. Yes, it’s one of the best hybrids that the market has ever seen. Yes, it’s at least somewhat fun, engaging, and, some might say, even good-looking.

The new Prius Prime is so good, in fact, it might render the regular Prius obsolete.

If, that is, anyone can be convinced to buy one. Continue reading >>>

Uber Halts Self-Driving Program, BMW Announces One

The BMW iNEXT: Coming soon!

The drive toward full autonomy in cars continues on its relentless march, but setbacks continue to plague the new technology.

Google was among the first to publicly test self-driving cars and has logged millions of mostly trouble-free miles. Tesla is also proving the technology, though not without occasional tragedy.

Automakers around the world are also going all-in on the self-driving craze. Ford has promised full autonomy by 2021, as have Tesla, Audi, and more.

BMW just announced its intent to join that list, while Uber has abruptly halted its autonomous testing after a crash in Arizona.

Will we see full autonomy in just four short years? Continue reading >>>

Who Needs a Reality Check, Tesla or Its Model 3 Buyers?

While flying to Cape Canaveral, Florida, to oversee SpaceX business, Elon Musk did what any of us would do with a few hours of free time: He used Twitter to chat with his 7.94 million followers about the upcoming Tesla Model 3.

As it turns out, when Elon Musk starts firing off replies on Twitter, people notice. Among the 50 messages he fired off were valuable insights into the future of his young car company and the model that’s expected to take Tesla from a few (expensive) driveways and turn it into a mass-market player. Many of the tweets seemed designed around lowering consumer expectations for the Model 3, but considering the scope of Musk’s plan for Tesla’s near future, is he the one who needs his expectations managed? Continue reading >>>

Chevy Bolt vs. Hyundai Ioniq: Which Has a Brighter Future?

Flexibility is a benefit enjoyed often by small companies, but rarely by large ones. Like a small boat, businesses still in early stages can maneuver quickly; they can alter business plans, tweak messaging, and otherwise pivot without having to worry about re-orienting a large workforce or undermining the public’s understanding of the brand. By contrast, large businesses operate more similarly to a container ship. Every move requires extensive planning, communication, and extreme foresight. Fine-tuning a product can take months, and changing direction entirely can take years. Continue reading >>>

5 Essentials for the Perfect Spring Break Road Trip

The snow has begun to melt, the sun is sticking around longer each day, and for thousands upon thousands of college students, the next few weeks will be some of the year’s best. For many, Spring Break means precious days away from school and the opportunity to hit the road and get out of town. Every road-trip car needs plenty of space for food and snacks, a couple of pillows, and enough room to make sure the travelers on board don’t murder each other. But there are a few other essentials, without which an interstate odyssey could easily become a terrible long haul. Continue reading >>>