AV Report 10/3-10/19

Autonomous Vehicle Report


Tuesday October 3rd

1.       Automated Trucks Left Out of Self-Driving Car Bill but Regulatory Relief Still Possible

a.       Senate Commerce committee spokesman said self driving trucks will probably get similar regulatory relief in the future

b.      Sen. Peters (D-Mich) was primarily concerned about the impact on jobs

c.       Sen. Thune (R-SD) is considering on a separate effort on legislation to help with the advancement of self driving truck and bus technology

d.      The Self-Driving Coalition for Safer Streets as well as the American Trucking Association have vowed to continue lobbying until commercial vehicles are judged under the same rules


2.        New Policy Ensures Sharing of Big Data and Tech among Japanese Companies

a.       Spearheaded by the Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry the ‘Connected Industries Tokyo Initiative’ will forge or revise frameworks for sharing information across company boundaries

i.      Minister expressed hopes in realizing a path to victory for Japan in the international competition around industrial data

b.       New policy will include the creation of certified “big-data banks” for sharing and using industrial data


3.       Ford Creates Team to Ramp Up Electric Vehicle Development

a.       Ford has created “Team Edison” to develop electric vehicles in partnership with other companies

b.      Global demand for electric vehicles has “a significant potential to increase” as governments implement EV mandates and quotas

c.       Ted Cannis has been named global director of electrification


4.       Larry Ellison Introduces ‘A Big Deal’: The Oracle Autonomous Database

a.       The Oracle Database 18c is the world’s first 100% “self-driving” autonomous database

i.      The database is said to minimize human error and reduce security risk

ii.      Machine Learning algorithms will automatically and continuously patch, tune, back up, and upgrade the system without manual intervention


Wednesday October 4th

1.       Huawei Connected Car Solution Wins ‘Best IoV Innovation’ Award

a.       The connected car solution developed on its OceanConnect IoT platform

i.      Recognized for achievements in flexible service operation and deployment, secure network access, and commercial assistance to customers and partners

ii.      Vehicle information is uploaded to the cloud over secure, reliable, and efficient connections

b.      Huawei has commercialized its connected car solution with FAW Group, Saudi Arabia’s Zain, and Malaysia’s Axiata


2.       GM Making ‘Rapid Progress’ Toward Self-Driving Car Deployment: Executive

a.       Head of Cruise automation said GM’s Cruise Automation unit is making “rapid progress” toward deploying self-driving cars

i.      GM’s CEO stated the company could deploy within the next few months

b.      Decision to test in San Francisco was aimed at speeding development given the complexity of the urban environment


3.       The Race to Amend the Senate’s Self-Driving Car Bill

a.       There were 65 first-round amendments submitted

b.      Jim Inhofe introduced an amendment to include trucks even after commercial vehicles were left out of the original draft bill

c.       Richard Blumenthal submitted an amendment aimed at allowing CT to keep their higher safety standards and Brian Schatz submitted an amendment addressing data collection


4.       Ford Plans $14B in Cost Cuts as Part of New CEO’s Strategy

a.       New CEO Jim Hackett plans to cut $14 billion in costs, drop some car models and focus the company’s resources on trucks, SUVs and electric vehicles as part of a renewed effort to win over investors

i.      Making the company leaner will help adjust to the changes in the car industry

ii.      Paired down direct reports from 18 under former CEO Mark Fields to 8

b.      Expects to reduce material costs by $10 billion

i.      Reducing the ability to customize cars

c.       Cutting $4 billion in engineering costs by making fewer prototypes and reducing product-development time as well as reallocating $7 billion from cars to SUVs and trucks


5.       US Secretaries and Trucking Legends Among ATA’s Conference Speakers

a.       ATA Management Conference and Exhibition is being held in Orlando Oct. 21-25

b.      Speakers include

i.      US Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao

ii.      Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta

iii.      Lawrence D Burns, consultant at Waymo

iv.      Neil Newhouse, partner at Public Opinion Strategies


Thursday October 5th

1.       Senate Committee Approves Driverless Car Bill

a.       Senate Commerce Committee approved similar legislation to the driverless car bill that passed in the house

i.      NHTSA would oversee the design and manufacture of autonomous vehicles

ii.      Does not cover driverless trucks

1.       The trucking industry has contributed $764,222 to capital hill incumbents this year

b.      Some democratic senators are concerned the bill will strip states of the ability to promote safety regulations


2.       GM More Than Doubles Autonomous Vehicle Fleet in California

a.       Over the past three months Cruise Automation has more than doubled the size of its test fleet of robot cars in California

i.      AVs were involved in 6 crashes in the month of September

1.       Cruise stated all six were the fault of the other drivers


3.       OOIDA Wants to Work with Congress on Autonomous Truck Legislation

a.       The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association which represents small business and professional trucks says they look forward to working with elected officials on upcoming autonomous trucking legislation

i.      Group has provided Senators with a list of items they feel must be included in an independent autonomous truck bill


4.       Auto Companies Scrambling to Catch up with Tesla  and Tech Firms, Morgan Stanley Analyst Says

a.       Ford and GM are rushing to bolster investments in technologies such as autonomous and electric powertrains

b.      Tech heavy firms are focused on AI and supercomputing

c.       “Incumbent” auto firms are being challenges from new sectors


5.       PCI Applauds Senate Action to Include Critical Data Access in AV START Act

a.       PCI applauded the amendment put forward and accepted by James Inhofe, Roy Blunt, Jerry Moran, Deal Heller, and Tammy Baldwin that addresses data access and sharing issues


Friday October 6th

1.       Waymo to Launch Commercial Driverless Car Ride Sharing Service this Fall

a.       Waymo is preparing to launch the first commercial ride-sharing service powered by self-driving vehicles with no human safety drivers as soon as this fall

i.      Waymo believes its technology is very close to being ready for commercial use

b.      A major deal with Ford fell through in late 2016 forcing Waymo to sign a smaller deal with Fiat Chrysler and putting more pressure on CEO John Krafcik

c.       Set to launch in Chandler AZ, a Phoenix suburb

d.      Most competitors are aiming for 2020-2021 for completely driverless vehicles, giving Waymo some significant leeway


2.       Nvidia Invests in Chinese Self-Driving Vehicle Startup

a.       Nvidia, a US chipmaker, joined an investment consortium that raised $52 million for JingChi a Chinese fleet startup

i.      Launched in April and obtained a license to test autonomous vehicles in California in June

b.      In August JingChi signed an agreement with the city of Anqing to deploy a fleet of 50 autonomous test vehicles

i.      Guided in Nvidia’s Drive PX platform


3.       Pew Says Consumers Not Ready for Robots or Self-Driving Cars

a.       72% of respondents to a Pew Research Center survey responded with worry over the advancement of automation compared to 33% who responded with enthusiasm

b.      39% believe the number of people killed or injured in traffic accidents will decrease while 30% believe roads will be more dangerous

c.       6/10 said they could not want to ride in a driverless vehicle

d.      85% of Americans are in favor of limiting machines to performing primarily those jobs that are dangerous or unhealthy for humans


4.       As Ford Pushes Into Electric Vehicles, US Union Aims to Save Jobs

a.       United Auto Workers is in talks with Ford Motor Co about ways to avoid layoffs as the No. 2 US automaker shift to more electric vehicles

i.      Ford told investors Tuesday it planned to slash $14 billion in costs over the next five years

ii.      CEO Jim Hackett touted a 30% reduction in hours per unit to build EVs meaning fewer workers

b.      Daimler AG warned last month that electric Mercedes models would initially be just half as profitable as conventional alternatives – forcing the group to find saving by outsourcing


Saturday October 7th

1.       Renault, Nissan, and Mitsubishi Form Partnership Called Alliance 2022

a.       Aim to have EVs, AVs, and a ride hailing service on the road by 2022

i.      Mass market sales is holding back the electric vehicle revolution given consumers think “other people” should be the ones to sacrifice speed, distance, and price


2.       Boeing Bets on Robot Pilot, Air Taxis with Aurora Takeover

a.       Boeing is buying drone company Aurora Flight Sciences Corp.

i.      Leader in autonomous flying

ii.      Purchase is subject to US Defense Department approval over the transfer of some of Aurora’s leading-edge technologies

b.      In April the company successfully flew an air-taxi prototype that takes off and lands vertically

i.      Plans to develop 50 for Uber Elevate, the ride-sharing company’s initiative for flyer cars

c.       The two companies had worked previously on several projects


3.       Auto Supplier Announces $1B Plant Investment

a.       Denso announced plans to invest a billion dollars and create more than 1,000 new jobs in its main Tennessee facility to meet growing demand for electric vehicle parts

i.      Plans to expand several production lines to produce advanced components

b.      Ten. Gov. Bill Haslam is embarking on a trade mission to Asia that will include a pitch seeking to attract a new joint Toyota and Mazda assembly plant


4.       White House Appoints Economist to NHTSA Deputy Post

a.       Heidi King, an economist with the federal government has been appoint the new deputy administrator of the NHTSA

i.      Administration has yet to name a top administrator

ii.      Formerly worked in the OMB’s office of information and regulatory affairs


Sunday October 8th

1.       GM to Unveil Hydrogen Powered Self Driving Truck Platform

a.       The Silent Utility Rover Universal Superstructure (SURUS) will have self driving capabilities and will be able to run on unpredictable, off-road terrain

i.      Will be unveiled at the Association of the United States Army (AUSA) from 10/9-10/11

b.      Hydrogen cell technology can be scaled up to larger vehicles if needed

i.      Possibly platooning

ii.      Can be refilled instantly, unlike electric vehicles that need to recharge


2.       Renault Out to Lead Green Future in the Middle East

a.       Renault, Nissan & Mitsubishi plan to launch 12 zero emission electric vehicles by 2022

i.      Supports the Dubai Clean Energy Strategy 2050

b.      Audi has two models available in the Middle east: Q5 and SQ5


3.       Reviewing Silicon Laboratories (SLAB) and its Peers

a.       Silicon Laboratories is one of 105 public companies in the “Semiconductors” industry

b.      89% of Silicon Lab shares are owned by institutional investors

c.       Provides software for IoT companies

i.      Digital isolators and sensors for vehicles


Monday October 9th

1.       Ride-Hailing Firm Grab Leads $15M Round in US Autonomous Driving Technology Start-Up Drive.Ai

a.       Drive.ai will explore Singapore as a potential deployment location

i.      Will open an office in the new few months

b.      Company’s total funding is now over $77 million

c.       Andrew Ng former VP and chief scientist at Baidu will join the board

d.      Has established partnership with Lyft


2.       Nauto Appoints Microsoft, Waymo Executives

a.       Named Ex-Microsoft executive Sanket Akerkar as SVP of global fleets and insurance and Jennifer Haroon, formerly with Waymo, as head of corporate development and business operations

i.      Akerkar will lead commercial fleet and insurance business around the world

ii.      Haroon will oversee partnerships and acquisitions


3.       French Group Novares Takes Step Toward IPO

a.       Novares, a French plastic parts maker filed for an IPO

b.      CEO stated they are aware of changes in the industry and are prepared to capitalize on the powertrain shift, lightweighting, smart surfaces and AV trends


4.       Tesla’s Model 3 Bottlenecks Delay Unveiling of Semi Truck

a.       Pushed back the reveal of Tesla’s semi truck as they focus on boosting production of Model 3

i.      Nov. 16 is the new date

b.      Tesla only built 260 model 3 sedans during the 3rd quarter, less than a fifth of forecasted

i.      First models go to employees


Tuesday October 10th

1.       Waymo Tackles Big Hurdle to Self-Driving Cars: Consumer Education

a.       Debuted a public education campaign about self driving cars and their benefits called “Let’s Talk Self-Driving”

i.      Teamed up with Mothers Against Drunk Driving, the National Safety Council, the Foundation for Blind Children, the East Valley Partnership, and the Foundation for Senior Living

b.      Rolling out ride hailing services soon – want consumers to be prepared


2.       GM Buyout of Strobe Bolsters Self-Driving Car Effort

a.       Strobe makes lidar and laser based sensors that help AVs navigate

b.      Stobe engineers will work with Cruise Automation the AV developer that GM acquired in 2016

i.      Strobe is developing a lidar system that will be much smaller and cheaper than alternatives


3.       Velodyne LiDAR more than Quadruples Production for Autonomous Vehicle Surge

a.       As a result of the uptick, Velodyne LiDAR sensors are immediately available via distribution partners in Europe, Asia Pacific, and North America

b.      Doubled number of full time employees over the  past six months mainly in San Jose

c.       Velodyne invented and patented the world’s first 3D real time LiDAR sensor for AVs


4.       Panasonic Expects Autonomous Driving System Launch in 2022

a.       Driving system expected to be launched in commercial vehicles as early as 2022

i.      Currently they are significantly behind competitors in the space

b.      Currently Pantasonic is the exclusive battery cell supplier for Tesla’s Model 3

c.       Took control of Spanish auto parts maker Ficosa International SA earlier this year


5.       Daimler Targets Airports for Driverless Snowplows

a.       Developing 25 ton driverless truck designed to automatically clear snow from airport runways

i.      Aiming for 2019

b.      Automated path not autonomous driving

c.       Project was commissioned by the Frankfurt airport in Frankfurt Germany


6.       Senate Committee Adds Vehicle Data Access Amendment to Autonomous Vehicle Bill

a.       The amendment, sponsored by Senator James Inhofe, R-Okla, requires DOT to convene a federal advisory committee to provide recommendations to congress with respect to ownership of data

b.      Prepared by the Auto Care Association


7.       Ford Taps Silicon Valley Startup to Build Transportation Software

a.       Ford has begun developing a new transportation service application using a software platform developed by Autonomic Inc

b.      15-month-old company is developing “an open platform for transportation”

i.      Could lay the groundwork for Ford launching its own ride-hailing or fleet management business


Wednesday October 11

1.       LeBron James Stars in Intel Ad for Self-Driving Cars

a.       Intel leads one of the first major campaign pushes for autonomous technology

b.      Automakers and technology companies are beginning to realize they have to address consumer apprehension about driverless cars


2.       Canada’s Magna Joins BMW-Intel Self-Driving Car Project

a.       Magna is the latest addition to the BMW-Intel alliance which aims to put self driving cars on the road around 2021

i.      Also includes Mobileye, Fiat Chrysler, Delphi, and Continental


3.       NVIDIA Just Unveiled a Chip to Power Fully Self-Driving Trucks and Robot Taxis

a.       First computer chips for fully autonomous level 5 vehicles

i.      DHL and ZF plan to deploy a fleet of autonomous delivery trucks using the chips

b.      The third gen Drive PX, code named Pagasus, are chips the size of car license plats with datacenter-class processing power

i.      13 fold increase over the PX 2 class

c.       NVIDIA is one step ahead of competitors including Intel


4.       SoftBank Leads $146 Million Bet on Digital-Mapping Startup Mapbox

a.       The Japanese investor is leading a $164 million investment in Mapbox Inc

b.      Provides mapping and location search technology

i.      Snap Inc

ii.      GE


Thursday October 12

1.       Totally Driverless Cars Could be Allowed on California Roads by June 2018

a.       Timeline was revealed when the state Department of Motor Vehicles proposed a new set of streamlined regulations

i.      Regulations are expected to be set by the end of the year

ii.      Require manufacturers testing AVs certify they’re meeting federal standards and that any public paperwork shared with the federal regulators is also passed along to the DMV

iii.      Scale back existing regulations that require municipalities to approve vehicle testing

iv.      Does not allow for driverless trucks

b.      Existing rules which require a human driver behind the wheel have been criticized for being too strict

i.      Some were worried it put CA’s standing as an innovation leader at risk

c.       State’s role is to make sure vehicles traveling on state highways conform to federal standards


2.       Insurers to Work with Tech Firms on Risks from Drones, Driverless Cars

a.       The World Economic Forum is brining insurers, tech firms, and governments together to find ways to tackle new technology including drones and driverless cars

b.      Economic risks of cyber attack could be as high as $222 billion according to research carried out for Lloyd’s of London insurance market

c.       Liability must be worked out for high tech autonomous vehicles


3.       VW to Develop Electric Trucks in $1.7 Billion Technology Drive

a.       Volkswagen AG will invest $1.7 billion in new technologies including electric trucks and buses by 2022

i.      Money will go toward electric drives, autonomous vehicles, and cloud based systemts

b.      Navistar and VW Truck and Bus announced plans last month to collaborate on electric vehicles

c.       Daimler last month delivered the first of a smaller range of electric delivery trucks to customers in New York


Friday October 13th

1.       BlackBerry QNX Autonomous Car Hits the Road in Ottawa Test Drive

a.       Canada’s first public test of an autonomous car linked to municipal infrastructure

i.      Sensors on the Lincoln MKZ communicated with dedicated short-range transmitters mounted on traffic lights

b.      BlackBerry QNX is developing the software foundation for autonomous

c.       Demonstration test zone has been announced for Startford, Ontario as part of the government’s plan to create an Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network with the help if $80 million over five years


2.       Waymo Gives Federal Officials a Detailed Safety Report on Self-Driving Vehicles

a.       Federal government last year and last month asked car companies to submit safety checklists

b.      Waymo has submitted a 43 page safety report to the DOT

c.       NHTSA said Waymo is the first company to make a voluntary safety self assessment public

i.      Currently optional but pending legislation would require them

d.      Waymo made the report public in part to reach consumers who are still skeptical of the emerging technology


3.       Ford and Addison Lee Launch a Self-Driving Car Coalition in London to Help Make a Third of the Capital’s Car Journeys Driverless by 2025

a.       Led by Addison Lee, a London taxi firm, the Merge Greenwich project will explore the potential for driverless and ride sharing services in London

i.      Backed by government organization Innovate UK

b.      Ford will contribute expertise and Addison Lee will contribute data

c.       Addison Lee is attempting to capitalize on a stalled Uber presence as their license to operate in the UK is being challenged


4.       Mercedes Unveils the Future Bus that can Drive Around Autonomously

a.       Mercedes has unveiled its Future Bus, a self-driving CityPilot vehicle

i.      Developed on the technology used by the autonomous Actros truck

b.      The Future Bus is running near Amsterdam-Schiphol airport in the Netherlands


Saturday October 14th

1.       Baidu Plans to Mass Produce Level 4 Self-Driving Cars with BAIC by 2021

a.       Baidu will supply the tech and software and BAIC will handle manufacturing

b.      By 2019, they estimate more than 1 million of BAIC’s production vehicles will feature Baidu networking tech


2.       Kapsch Invests in Traffic Technology Services to Expand its CAV Operations

a.       Autrian ITS and tolling giant Kapsch TrafficCom has made an initial investment of $3m in Oregon based Traffic Technology Services (TTS)

i.      Provides Vehicle to infrastructure technology

ii.      First major deployment was in Las Vegas

b.      Last month TTS finalized an agreement with Siemens USA to expand its partner network


3.       Atlanta’s Smart Corridor to Serve as “Living Lab” for Smart Transportation

a.       The city and Georgia Tech launched the North Avenue Smart Corridor in mid september

b.      Interview with Renew Atlanta’s General Manager Fay DiMassimo and Georgia Tech’s Managing Director for Smart Cities and Inclusive Innovation Debra Lam


Sunday October 15th

1.       Canadian Government Meets with Tesla to Talk Self-Driving Cars, Makes Pitch

a.       Canadian Transport Minister Marc Garneau traveled to silicon valley to meet with Tesla executives

i.      Pitched Canada as a possible location site for Tesla

b.      Next he will visit Detroit


Monday October 16th

1.  Alphabet is Training Law Enforcement on How to handle Self-Driivng Car Crashes

b.      Waymo cars can hear sirens and will autonomously pull over

c.       Training police on how to recognize and access a self driving car


2.  Toyota to Test Self-Driving Talking Cars by About 2020

d.      The cars will be electric and self driving as well as use artificial intelligence to engage with drivers

i.      Will converse will drivers, building up knowledge of users’ preferences, habits, and emotions through deep learning

ii.      Will be able to estimate emotions and alertness of drivers by reading their expressions, actions, and tone of voice

1.       Will take over driving when the human operator is incapable of driving safely

e.      Toyota has committed $1 billion through 2020 to develop advanced automated driving and AI technology


3.  Daimler Plans New Structure for Mercedes, Truck Business

f.        Moving towards a new strucutre in which its Mercedes-Benz car division and truck and bus business would become legally independent entities under Daimler’s overall roof

i.      Would give divisions the entrepreneurial flexibility to react to a rapidly changing business environment

g.       Earliest final approval could come at the company’s 2019 shareholder meeting

h.      Daimler Trucks and Busses includes truck brands Frieghtliner headquartered in Portland Oregon, Western Star, and FUSO


Tuesday October 17th

1.       Ford Faces ‘Significant Work’ Before Autonomous Vehicles Become Reality, Argo AI Exec Says

a.       In February Ford announced it would invest $1 billion over five years to become a majority stakeholder in the company

b.      Bryan Salesky, Argo AI CEO said there is significant work to be done to address sensors, cameras and radars, and logging sufficient on road mileage

i.      Testing in both Pittsburgh and Southeast Michigan

c.       Ford plans to launch a Level 4 AV for commercial use in about four years


2.         GM’s Cruise Will Test Self-Driving Cars in New York in 2018

a.       According to the New York State Governor’s Office GM will begin testing in NYC in 2018

i.      Will be deployed in a geofenced area in Manhattan

ii.      Each car will have two people in the car

b.      GM is currently testing in San Francisco, Phoenix, and Detroit

c.       Recently acquired Lidar manufacturer Strobe


3.       Daimler to Invest 35 Billion Euros in Germany over the Next 7 Years

a.       Plans to invest 41.3$ billion in its German plants over the next seven years

i.      Funding projects in electromobility and mobility services


Wednesday October 18th

1.       Intel Pledges $250m for Autonomous Driving Investments

a.       Intel Capital, which formed a $100m Connected Car Fund in 2012, plans to provide $250m for AV tech developers in the next two years

i.      Will help improvements in automotive connectivity, communication, context awareness, deep learning, security and safety

b.      Intel is collaborating with BMW and Mobileye


2.       Intel and Mobileye Offer Formula to Prove Safety of Autonomous Vehicles

a.       Amnon Shashua, Mobileye CEO published an academic paper with a mathematical formula to ensure that a self-driving vehicle operates  in a responsible manner

i.      The formula collaboratively constructs standards that definitively assign accident fault

ii.      Decides liability and blame in the event of an accident

iii.      Named the Responsibility Sensitive Safety model

b.      The RSS model formalizes this in a way that ensures self-driving cars will operate only within the framework defined as “safe” according to clear definitions of fault that are agreed upon across the industry and by regulators


3.       Baidu Aims to Launch Self-Driving Bus in China Next Year

a.       Baidu is going to develop a self driving bus, running on a designated route, with a Chinese bus maker

b.      Baidu argues its open source software will give car makers more control of their data

i.      Main pitch over Waymo


4.       Ohio Turnpike Commission Approves Communications System for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles

a.       52 miles of the Ohio turnpike will communication road conditions and traffic status to cars

i.      $1.46 million contract with Logicalis in Cleveland for Cisco Systems equipment and software

ii.      Part of the DriveOhio measure


5.       Foxconn and IDG Seeking $1.5 Billion for Car Tech Fund

a.       Foxconn Technology Group and venture firm IDG Capital are seeking to raise $1.5 billion to seed startups in automotive technologies

i.      Each would put in 10% of the money to be raised while both firms delegate executives with experience in target areas

b.      Foxconn has already invested in Future Mobility


Thursday October 19th

1.       Apple has New Self-Driving Car Hardware Covered with iPod-style White Plastic

a.       Apple’s self driving cars have a new array of sensors

i.      Including six Velodyne lidar sensors

b.      Apple is currently operating a fleet of three Lexus SUVs to test software

i.      Plans to operate a self driving shuttle

c.       Last year they scaled back their ambitions from building a complete vehicle to focusing on the self-driving component


2.       GM Cruise Said to Turn to Uber as Lyft Alliance Cools

a.       GM is discussing a plan to put AVs developed by Cruise into a program operated by Uber in 2018

b.      Cruise is also tasked with created a ride sharing program to rival both Lyft and Uber

c.       Currently own 9% of Lyft

i.      Deal never mentioned exclusivity

d.      Last month Ford announced it too intended to launch an autonomous vehicle partnership with Lyft


3.       LG Electronic Joins Ties with Qualcomm on Self-Driving Auto Components

a.       LG Electronics has signed an agreement with Qualcomm to tap deeper into the industry for self-driving automobile parts

i.      Opened a joint research lab for V2X technology in Seoul

ii.      Plan to open another in South Korea by the end of the year