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CR Survey: Consumer Interest in EVs Begins to Thaw

Most Americans are willing to at least consider an electric car in their future.

So says a survey by Consumer Reports. That’s a big gain compared with a year or two ago, even though plenty of would-be buyers remain wary about price, range and the ability to recharge EVs.

“There is robust consumer interest in electric vehicles,” asserts Chris Harto, the magazine’s senior sustainability policy analyst. What carmakers need to do now is “deliver more compelling choices at competitive prices.”

Interest Tops 70%

The CR poll finds that one in three drivers claim zero interest in EVs, ever. But the rest have at least “some interest” in electric power—even though the majority of say they’ll stick with piston power the next time ...READ MORE

LMC Automotive
Opposed-Piston Engine Developer Touts 2027 Diesel Emissions Capabilities

“At a time when the industry is contemplating many technology options to address clean energy, it’s important to have pragmatic solutions in the conversation that can have more immediate impact, and meeting or beating the most stringent regulations with less cost and complexity and no reliance on enabling infrastructure is compelling,” asserts David Crompton, president and CEO of San Diego-based Achates Power.

The Engine

In this case, the pragmatic solution Crompton is referring to is Achates’ opposed-piston engine, which promises to meet more stringent emissions requirements with current aftertreatment systems—and without having to switch to electrified drivetrains.

The Tests

Crompton is celebrating recent tests that showed Achates’ 3-cylinder ...READ MORE

Mayflower Consulting
U.S. Traffic Fatality Rate Drops to 5-Year Low

Deaths on U.S. roads fell 2% to 36,100 souls in 2019, and the rate per 100 million vehicle miles traveled dropped to 1.10. Both were five-year lows.

It was the third consecutive year of decline in spite of increases in traffic volume, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports.

Key Gains

NHTSA says fatalities lessened in five key categories compared with 2018:

  • Passenger vehicle occupants, down 2.8%
  • Pedestrians, down 2.7%
  • Bicyclists, down 2.9%
  • Alcohol-related, down 5.3%
  • Urban deaths, down 4%

Unfortunately, the good news hasn’t carried over into the first half of 2020.

The overall number of fatalities in April-June, when pandemic lockdown measures were in effect, went down. But NHTSA suggests that those who were still on the road got more reckless, ...READ MORE

AutoBeat
Velodyne Spins Ahead with New Lidar Contracts

Velodyne landed two production contracts this week for its Alpha Prime lidar.

Motional

The more significant of the two, announced this morning, is a multi-year pact with Motional.

Velodyne will be the exclusive provider of long-range, 360° surround-view lidar for Motional’s Level 4 driverless vehicles.

As a reminder, Motional—a Hyundai/Aptiv joint venture—is partnering with Lyft on a robo-taxi service that’s due to launch in several U.S. cities in 2023.

May Mobility

In addition, Velodyne inked a deal with Ann Arbor, Mich.-based May Mobility, which plans to equip its entire fleet with Velodyne’s Alpha Prime sensors.

May Mobility, which counts BMW and Toyota among its investors, has provided more than 265,000 self-driving rides since ...READ MORE

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