If there was any doubt in your mind that autonomous driving features would arrive quickly in consumer vehicles, maybe you should pay attention to CES this year. With the Detroit Auto Show mere days away, the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas provides a good opportunity for automakers to show off what their research and development teams are capable of pulling off with some of their more outlandish ideas. Of course, CES is a day of concepts and thematics more than actual car reveals, but it can be a great way to gauge how the automotive industry feels it will evolve given its current trajectory.
Faraday Future mysteriously stormed into the U.S. market promising a new breed of electric car that would upend Tesla.
It unveiled a supercar concept and has teased a coming crossover. It has broken ground on a $1 billion factory in Nevada. Curiously, the company has never sold, or even produced, a single production-worthy automobile.
Now its parent company, China-based LeEco, has sent a dire warning to employees that it’s having financial troubles and needs to cut costs.
Could Faraday’s Future be over before it even begins?
It appears that, contrary to some rumors and speculation, Faraday Future is not Apple in disguise.
In recent weeks Faraday has hired a former Toyota executive to lead exterior design, while the Nevada treasurer began to question how the upstart electric carmaker will finance a $1 billion factory and deliver on its promise to help turn Nevada into an electric-vehicle production hub. (Tesla, of course, is building its Gigafactory there.)
Nevada has reason to be concerned, because the state has promised tax benefits and infrastructure improvements. Faraday’s failure would be a giant gambling loss for Nevada, a possibility that would seem less likely if Apple had control of the reins.
The Apple plan, meanwhile, seems to be delayed.