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Overdrive News 16 October 2017

Overdrive Radio Program News – 16 October 2017

Ford’s new Business Plan

Ford‘s new CEO, Jim Hackett, who took over in May, has recently outlined his business plan to investors. Key points include:

 

 

 

  • Ford intends to cut about $14 billion in costs over the next five years by slicing the amount of time it takes to develop products and by reducing the number of unique parts per vehicle.
  • About a third of the funds ear-marked for internal combustion development has been diverted into designing fully electric and electrified hybrid vehicles.
  • The automaker will reallocate $7 billion toward future development of crossovers and SUVs, which are driving Ford’s profits and the bulk of the automaker’s sales.
  • And it will reduce development time by about 20 percent by amping up the use of robotics, 3D printing, and virtual reality to design and engineer upcoming vehicles.

 

Automated Aircraft

Overdrive has reported extensively on autonomous vehicles and how they will change the future of motoring. But the development of autonomous vehicles is not limited road going cars and trucks.

Both Boeing and Airbus are investing heavily in automated aircraft and it might not be long before pilots are not required to fly you from A to B.

Boeing has recently announced that it is acquiring US company Aurora Flight Sciences, a maker of drones and aviation parts, in a bid to bring increased automation to airliners, military drones and even personal air taxis.

Boeing is on the record for saying that is exploring automation possibilities for commercial aircraft. This is partly in response to concerns that the industry will experience a shortage of pilots in the near future – Boeing has estimated that the industry will need over 600,000 pilots over the next 20 years.

Meanwhile European rival Airbus is undertaking full scale testing of the electric propulsion system for its small four passenger City-Airbus vertical take-off and landing commuter aircraft. It’s designed to be pilot operated when it is due to be launched next year, but will transition to being a fully autonomous aircraft once the tech catches up.

British New Car Sales

While sales of new cars continue to increase in Australia, in the UK it is a different story. The British new car market has declined for a sixth consecutive month, with an especially sharp drop in diesel sales, industry figures have shown.

In September sales were down 9.3% on the same month last year and on a year-to-date basis car registrations have slipped 3.9%.

With recent publicity about the banning of diesel vehicle in Europe demand for diesel cars fell steeply, down 21.7pc in September and 13.7pc for the year so far.  Sales of alternatively fueled cars jumped 41% giving them a 5.3% share of the overall market.

 

Tesla delays Electric Truck

Tesla has delayed the unveiling of an electric semi-truck until November so the automaker can focus its attention on production problems with its new mass-market car, the Model 3.

The all-electric semi-truck unveiling was originally scheduled for October.

CEO Elon Musk said the company is deep in “production hell,” referring to the Model 3. Tesla has produced just 260 of its new Model 3 electric cars in the third quarter, dramatically missing Musk’s prediction that it would produce more than 1,600 cars by September.

 

Mercedes Ute

Mercedes is about to upset the global ute market with the world’s most hi-tech compact pick-up, the new X-Class.

The German luxury brand will offer a range of models — starting with a fleet version with a vinyl floor, and stretching to a luxury, prestige edition.

However X-Class will be the most powerful diesel in its category and have many advanced safety features including adaptive cruise control, radar and multiple cameras.

The new X-Class is due in Australian showrooms in early 2018. Price is yet to be announced but the three-model line-up is expected to range from $40,000 to beyond $70,000, making it the most expensive ute on the market locally.

Dyson electric car for 2020 

Dyson, the British appliance company, is best known for its bagless vacuum cleaners. Well it appears that Dyson is about to enter the car making industry.

Founder and chief engineer James Dyson has officially confirmed his company is developing an electric car and is planning for a 2020 launch. The company is committing over $2.7 billion dollars to the program.

Not only does Dyson have 400 employees currently working on its electric car project, but the program has drawn some high-profile names. Executives from both Aston Martin and Tesla have left their positions to join Dyson.

The company intends to keep its electric-car plans secret, due to the “fierce” nature of the industry.

Overdrive’s radio program is podcast on iTunes under the title “Overdrive – Cars and Culture” or you can listen on your computer by going to the Driven Media web site.

 

Overdrive Radio

Overdrive’s radio program is podcast on iTunes under the title “Overdrive – Cars, Transport and Culture” or you can listen on your computer by going to the Driven Media web site.

 

 

 

 

Other sites of interest

Any Auto

Gay Car Boys

 

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