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Navya Unveils Its Self-Driving Car

navya self-driving car

France-based tech firm Navya just revealed its self-driving car. What makes the vehicle unique is that it ditches the driver’s seat, steering and pedals. It features full autonomy on the road.

Lately, we have been witnessing a gradual shift in the main targets of automakers. Many of them are now transitioning to the production of electric cars, thanks to the rapid advancement of technology and the cheaper means to acquire batteries with better capacity and longer electric range. The developments in computers and sensors have also paved the way for companies to enter into the race to produce self-driving cars. Navya has been taking advantage of the new landscape by not only producing their own EVs but they have even tapped into the self-driving car race.

It should be noted though that the company is not a new player in the industry. In 2015, the French firm has already showcased its autonomous vehicle called the Autonom Shuttle. So far, it has successfully demonstrated its self-driving features in real-life traffic conditions and it sold 50 of its units in different countries. Basically, the product provides mobility solutions to commuters.

From the lessons it learned along the way, they were able to make the Autonom Cab. As its name implies, it is a cab capable of autonomous driving.

Unlike the Autonom Shuttle that can only run at an average joggers pace, the Autonom Cab can reach speeds up to 55 mph. It will be worth 250,000 euros and it is targeted to enter the market by 2018 after its successful public testing.

The self-driving car aims to make its public testing at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in January 2018. The planned areas for its initial on-the-road demo will be in France and U.S.

Unlike the traditional cars of today, the Navya self-driving car will not have a steering wheel of pedals. It is just a proof of how confident they are in their autonomous tech. However, for the meantime, the testings will be overseen by a Navya employee with a joystick that can take control of the vehicle when needed.

Do Electric Cars Really Serve as Cleaner Alternatives?

Ferrari LaFerrari hybrid

There is a popular belief that electric cars are environment-friendly because of their zero emission values. However, Ferrari and Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne is not buying it.

Ferrari has shown us their hybrid car concept for the 599 back in 2010, their latest hybrid Ferrari LaFerrari, and their Formula One cars are now using a hybrid powertrain that is proving to be a major challenge for the reigning champion, Mercedes. Despite that, it seems electric cars do not sit well with Ferrari executives. The fans of the brand share the same sentiment too. After all, the brand has been known for its powerful cars ran by combustion engines.

Marchionne pointed out in an interview with CNBC that electric cars may not be as clean as they seem. He said that the full environmental impact of electric vehicles or EVs must be analyzed thoroughly. He recommended a full examination on the origin of the electric power, where it comes from, the manufacture of its batteries, cost in terms of carbon dioxide and its environmental impact.

The CEO pointed out that if they are using nuclear power in the production of such, then he has no issue about it as he thinks that is the right thing. He explained that if companies are still using fossil fuel to produce EVs, there is a bigger issue regarding the matter.

The report claimed that as of now, Ferrari has no public plans to develop EVs. Ferrari execs and fans defended their stance with the fact that electric cars would not fit in the brand’s image. However, the source stated that their position might change due to the strong push of governments worldwide for electrification in order to curb pollution.

It should be noted that Fiat Chrysler does have its own electric models as well, but Marchionne revealed that the company is losing as much as $20,000 for every electric model of the Fiat 500.

Dyson Electric Car Prepares to Challenge Tesla

dyson electric cars coming up

A Dyson electric car is in the works. Last week, the company revealed its plan on rivaling major automakers in the electric vehicle (EV) market and poises itself as a challenger to the supremacy of Tesla in the segment.

Max Conze, the CEO of Dyson, revealed in an interview with Wired that they are gearing to enter into the car market. He said that they plan to launch their very first EV by 2020.

The move is a huge leap from the company that is known for producing home appliances, including the best vacuum cleaners in the market today. It could prove as a big challenge for them. However, Conze boldly stated that they are preparing to make their own auto all by themselves without the need for a partner.

Critics have expressed their concern over the decision of Dyson to tap the EV market, but the company claimed that they have the means to produce them. Then Conze added that making their own car platform will allow them to smoothly integrate their in-house technology with their vehicles.

Conze pointed out that through the utilization of their expertise with batteries, energy-efficient motors and air flow system to autos, they will significantly improve the existing electric range of EVs by 50 to 100 percent. It should be recalled that the Tesla Model S is capable of reaching 315 miles at full charge. The report noted that the company has hired 400 engineers for the project and has allotted £2 billion for the program.

Although Dyson already uses advanced artificial intelligence for their robot vacuums, they are not looking to make self-driving cars. Only basic semi-autonomous features like lane-keeping assistance will likely be installed in their future vehicles. Furthermore, Conze said they will not be focusing on building their own charging infrastructure as EVs with greater range don’t have to be recharged often.

4 Things To Know About The Honda Urban EV Concept Retro Design

honda urvan concept (1)

The Honda City garnered a cult following because it was cute and functional. Can we fault Honda for wanting to maximize the potential of the City? At the 2017 Frankfurt Motor Show, Honda unveiled a new concept called the Honda Urban EV. It is basically a City, but fitted with a retro design that we all adore.

1. City with Retro Touches

Think of the City, but with more compact dimensions, round headlights, rectangular grille, and a hood decal reminiscent of City’s previous generations. To complete the look, there’s also an upright tail with square taillights. Overall, the car looks every bit the compact sedan Honda has been updating every year, but with funkier exteriors and interiors.

The suicide doors all the more emphasize the concept’s retro design. The driver and passengers will enter through it and sit on a pair of benches. At their front is perhaps one of the largest displays ever to be fitted on a car. They should be able to view conventional information that shows infotainment details and everything related to the car’s all-electric powertrain.

2. Power Manager to Take Care of the Drivetrain

There is no word yet on the powertrain, but Honda has been vocal about the Power Manager, which debuted alongside the Urban EV concept. The new technology will be able to transfer energy between a vehicle, a home, and the broader energy grid. If you are familiar with Tesla’s Power Wall, wherein owners can store renewable energy and upload it to the grid, the Power Manager sounds a lot like it.

3. Modern Touches Can Be Found Too

Sure, the retro design will make the Urban EV Concept stand out, but there are modern touches, too. There’s a blue backlighting in the Honda grille badge, a programmable display screen between the headlights, and a display screen between the taillights that shows the charge status. Aside from those, there’s also the huge multi-spoke wheels.

4. Concept to Go Into Production

The Honda Urban EV Concept will not remain a concept. It will go into production for European markets in 2019. There is no word yet if this will cross the shore to the United States, but let’s hope that it will since the retro design is too cute for words.

Photo Source: CarBuzz

3 Important Things To Learn About The 2018 Lucid Motors Air

lucid motors air (49)

The release of the Tesla Model S triggered companies to do research on what could possibly be the best and most affordable electric cars. And while most companies are intent on electrifying their lineup with mass-targeted EVs by 2020, specialty manufacturers like Lucid Motors Air is coming up with their own version of a funky electric sedan.

1. Exterior

Based on the photos of the car from a source, the two most noticeable things about the Lucid Air is the lack of radiator grille and the massive windshield. The engineers over there were pretty confident that the lack of the grille won’t hinder the airflow needed for the motor and batteries, and that’s largely thanks to the vents in the front hood. The massive windshield adds to the very modern styling.

2. Interior

The unique exterior would only need to be completed by the superior styling of the interior, too. The primary focus of anyone who would see the interior of the car is the floating dashboard with a huge display module at the front of the driver. This includes three different displays—one for navigation and driver information center, one for the instrument cluster, and one for the battery charge state, range, etc.

The front cabin might be nice, but the rear passenger seats are on another level. Angled like a bathtub, which means the seats are reclined, the rear cabin is unparalleled in comfort and luxury. There’s a long center console in the middle of the seats that also houses a small display to let passengers control various features.

3. Drivetrain

Lucid developed its battery for over a decade, allowing it to go 400 miles on a single charge on 1,000 horsepower of near-instance go juice. The engine itself is an electric motor and transmission that are probably better than what we now see in the market.

The base model of the Lucid Motors Air offers up to 240-mile range with 400 horsepower in a rear-wheel-drive configuration. It should be able to compete with the Model S, including a much cheaper price of $52,500.

Once it is launched, there will also be a Launch Edition that has 1,000 horsepower and 315 miles of range on a single charge.

BMW Prepares to Challenge the Tesla Model 3

bmw 3 series plug-in hybrid

The Tesla Model 3 is set to be revealed this month. Looming in the scene is BMW with its plan to launch an all-electric sedan to take on the company led by Elon Musk.

According to Trusted Reviews, citing German publication Handelsblatt, BMW has set its sights on introducing a car that will rival the Tesla 3 and the company will reveal it at the Munich Auto Show in September.

The Tesla Model 3 challenger will come from the 3 Series range of BMW. The fully-electric sedan will be the company’s first in its bid to enter the electric vehicle segment of the market, which is dominated by Tesla.

The source claimed that the electric 3 Series will have a range of at least 400 kilometers. No other details have been revealed yet though. It should be noted too that BMW had not released an official statement about the matter so take this with a grain of salt.

At present the BMW 3 Series saloon car has a starting price of £25,740. An electric variant of the vehicle might cost more than that due to the cost of developing and manufacturing one. Add to that the expenses of sourcing parts like the battery and electric motor. On the other hand, the German luxury automaker might not jack up the value of the coming EV too much so that it will be competitive with the pricing of the Tesla Model 3.

The BMW 3 Series has been in production since 1975. The product is the entry-level luxury car of the German automaker. The vehicle is currently in its sixth generation model.

A plug-in hybrid model of the 3 Series was introduced last year. The car has gained good reviews so for its design and easy-to-use features. We think it is just right for BMW to follow up on its success by producing its new EV under the 3 Series platform.

3 Things We Learned From the Upcoming 2018 Nissan Leaf

Spy shot of the 2018 Nissan Leaf EV. (Photo Source: Autocar)

Spy shot of the 2018 Nissan Leaf EV. (Photo Source: Autocar)

In our previous article, we have mentioned that Nissan is already clearing up the supply of its first-generation Leaf electric vehicles. In an effort to reach that goal, the automaker has partnered with other companies to provide US customers with up to $10,000 discounts on its lease. The move is to pave the way for the coming of the 2018 Nissan Leaf.

Thanks to leaks, teasers and reliable reports online, we have learned more about the electric car. Here are the top 3 juicy stuff we uncovered about the 2018 Nissan Leaf EV:

Design

nissan leaf ev (1)

The new Nissan Leaf EV is heavily inspired by the Micra. The leaked photo here and the spy shot on top show the electric car with more aggressive styling.

The new design is in contrast with the existing Leaf with mild-looking fascia. The baggy camouflage wrap of the spied new model of the auto make it hard to distinguish its body lines and actual edges though.

Electric Motor

There is no word yet about the possible boost in the electric motor output of the EV but it is speculated to get more driving range. From full-charge, he car is estimated to run up to 340 miles on pure electric power before its battery runs out of juice. The number is more than double the capability of the current model of the Leaf.

Arrival

The 2018 Nissan Leaf will likely be unveiled a couple of months from now. The sale of the car might start in December. However, other sources claim that the car will hit the market during the early part of next year.

Photos

Check out the teaser and leaked spy shots of the 2018 Nissan Leaf EV in the gallery below:

Top 5 Reasons Why the 2017 Chevrolet Bolt EV Will Be a Hit

2017-chevrolet-bolt-ev-2

The arrival of the Chevrolet Bolt EV is a milestone for the automobile industry. This only means the electric vehicle variant isn’t going away, and it’s actually here to stay.

Here are the top 5 reasons why the the Chevrolet Bolt EV will succeed in the market, according to a source:

1. It’s Priced Below $30,000

The Bolt is really priced at $37,495 in LT trim, but a $7,500 federal tax credit can pull that price down to under $30,000. That’s not to mention that there are states and municipalities that offer incentives if you use an electric car.

2. It Can Run Up to 238 Miles

The Bolt can cover 238 miles of ground, but that’s a relaxed and leisurely drive up the California coast. The exponential effects of aerodynamic mean that the faster you go, the more energy you consume. When set to 75 mph with the climate at 72 degrees, the Bolt’s battery can last up to 190 miles. That’s more than you need for daily driving. The Bolt also has three controls on its digital instrument panel: minimum, maximum, and a more prominent best estimated based on your driving style, use of accessories like headlights and audio and ambient conditions.

3. Fast Charging is Becoming Available

If you’re worried about the charging time, don’t be. For $750, Bolt owners can have the direct-current fast-charging capability via a Combined Charging System (CCS) port. As of September, there are already 1,061 CCS connectors in the US. These stations charge at 50 kilowatts, which, according to Chevrolet, means an added 90 miles of range in 30-minute charging. But that’s nothing compared to Tesla’s 2,010 Supercharger hookups with 120 kilowatts capacity.

4. It Offers Comfortable Driving Experience

The Bolt delivers comfort to both the driver and the passengers even over broken pavements, thanks to the low-mounted battery that is cushioned by well-tuned damping. In terms of chassis tuning, it is similar to the Cadillac CT6 and the Chevrolet Malibu.

5. It’s Less Than a Crossover, But More Than a Sedan

The Bolt is originally marketed as a crossover, though it looks nothing like it. The only thing similar with a crossover is the tall seating position because of the underfloor battery pack. It doesn’t have the ground clearance, though, of a crossover.

Chevrolet Released Pricing For 2017 Bolt EV

chevrolet-bolt-ev

It looks like Chevrolet is keeping up its promise to offer the 2017 Bolt EV at an affordable price as it recently announced an MSRP of $37,495, including destination charge. This is rather cheap considering the Bolt EV has an EPA-rated 238 miles on a full charge.

Also, depending on individual tax situations, customers may even receive a federal tax credit of up to $7,500 for a net value of $29,995. Alan Batey, president of GM North America and leader of Global Chevrolet, said that “value” is the hallmark for Chevrolet and their offering of an affordable Bolt EV proves their intent of letting their customers access an electric vehicle with plenty of range.

According to reports, Bolt EV buyers can expect range, cargo space, technology and safety features that all come standard in this vehicle with crossover proportions. Bolt EV is considered a smart buy for any customer, thanks to its dependable performance and sales and service support from a nationwide network of Bolt EV certified Chevrolet dealers.

With the Bolt EV, you’re not only saving on fuel and saving the environment at the same time, you’ll also be getting well-appointed equipment and features.

The Bolt EV is offered in the standard but well-equipped LT trim, which has a starting price of $37,495. It comes with a wide array of features such as Regen on Demand™ steering wheel paddle, rear vision camera, 10.2-inch diagonal color touch screen and MICHELIN™ Self-sealing tires (in certain circumstances). The top of the line is the Premier, which features all the equipment in the LT trim plus leather-appointed seats, front and rear heated seats, surround camera and rear camera mirror.

The pricing released includes the destination and freight charges, but excludes taxes, title, license and dealer fees. Select dealerships across the US are expected to start offering the 2017 Bolt EV by late this year.

Watch the Remote Control Feature of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6

Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6, 2016

The Vision Mercedes-Maybach Vision 6 is characterized by “hot and cool” design coupled with a powerful engine and a bunch of technical innovations under the three-pointed star marque. Recently, it was discovered through a YouTube video that the concept car can also be driven using a remote control.

Marchettino, an Italian-based car lover, shared a four-minute clip showing the remote control feature of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 in his channel. In the video, a guy can be seen holding a device similar to a video game console controller. Then he uses the controller to move the electric vehicle back and forth on the lawn. After that, he loads the car into the trailer with precision.

There are a lot of practical applications offered by the remote control element of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6. One of them is it allows the driver of the car to move the car in and out of the parking area conveniently no matter how narrow is the space around it. That is similar to the key feature of the Pilot Parking Assistance provided by the new Mercedes-Benz E-Class.

Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 Video

Watch the video below of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6 where its remote control feature is demonstrated:

Other Tech Found in the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6

Another noteworthy tech in the concept car can be found in its front windshield. According to the Global Media site of Daimler, the glass also functions as a transparent display driving and navigational data are shown there.

The embedded display in the windscreen of the concept EV augments the outside world with additional information for safer and more convenient driving experience. The function can be controlled by the occupants of the car by simple hand gestures.

Digital information can be seen in the glass trim part of the Vision Mercedes-Maybach 6’s cabin. Among the data that can be accessed are the body sensor displays as well as seat control, climate control and emotional lighting effects.

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