Episode 75 : Not that Hammond - Autumn Statement, JLR Employment Claim, Audi Get New R&D Head, Subaru Driving Day

FOLLOW UP - OTTO IN NEVADA

Otto, the driverless vehicle company who drove beer across Colorado, previously drove autonomously in Nevada and it is thought broke their driverless vehicle regulations by not getting the correct permits nor supplying the required permits. However, even if they did specifically not follow the law there is nothing in place to allow the State to prosecute. To read more click here.

JAGUAR LAND ROVER MAKE EMPLOYMENT CLAIM

JLR CEO Ralf Speth announced that they could create up to 10,000 jobs, on the back of their move for electrification of future vehicles. Andrew was a tiny bit skeptical over this and the manner in which this was done. With the Government having listened to Nissan’s very public threats, other manufacturers were bound to follow suit. For JLR’s plans to have any hope of succeeding, as they state, massive upgrades to the infrastructure is required which necessitates governmental help. To read more click here.

AUTUMN STATEMENT

Fuel Duty rise is frozen again. Andrew is a touch cynical (yes, really) about this as he believes no Government will increase this again. However, the ‘motorist loving’ government increased insurance tax, which we have no chance to avoid. This is the third rise in the last two years. However, there will be investment in low emission and autonomous vehicles, with £390 million. This will be split across infrastructure, support for businesses installing charging points and other investment. Money is also being provided to local government to deal with road ‘pinch points’ and ease traffic congestion. To read more click here and click here.

AUDI APPOINT NEW HEAD OF R&D

Peter Mertens, Volvo's Research and Development vice president, has been appointed by Audi to head up their R&D. Even if you ignore the impressive work he has previously done he cannot be tainted by #Dieselgate, which all VAG companies need! To read more click here.

TESLA ANDROID SECURITY RISK

A report has come out that explains how Tesla stores Owner Authentication, for their Android app, as plain text on these devices. In security terms, this is a big no no! Anyone who can gain access to the device, at which Android is liable to, can then gain access to the owner’s vehicle. Andrew, without getting too tinfoil hatty, discusses how this is an example of what manufacturers need to appreciate and help the consumer with if they want the mass adoption of connected cars. If there are weaknesses in other devices, that can be exploited in such a way that expose owners, they must do what they can to defend owners by warning them or refusing to use the operating system until such holes are plugged. To read more click here.

BMW, DAIMLER, FORD and VW WORK TOGETHER

BMW, Daimler, Ford and Volkswagen have agreed to work together to install a network of EV fast-charging points across main routes of Europe. They are backing the Combined Charging System (CCS), where Nissan, PSA, Mitsubishi and others use the ChaDeMo system and of course there is Tesla’s proprietary system. But, it is a move towards one system being adopted by all. To read more click here.

NHTSA WANT ‘DRIVER MODE’ FOR PHONES

In the US, the NHTSA has outlined the sort of things it wants phone operating system companies to voluntarily inhibit phones from doing whilst someone is driving. This has been dubbed ‘Driver Mode’ in a similar way that there is Airplane Mode. Alan and Andrew are a bit sceptical as to how well this will work, if it is adopted, as it will be easily ignored by those who really want to use their phone from behind the wheel. To read more click here.

LIST OF THE WEEK - USED CARS OF THE YEAR

This week Car Dealer Magazine awarded their Used Cars of the Year, for 2016. To read more click here and scroll down to the list.

SUBARU DRIVING DAY

Last week Alan and Andrew were lucky enough to attend a day of trying out various cars from Subaru’s range, both on and off road. They tried the Outback, on and off road, and were mightily impressed. They tried to deliberately crash but Subaru’s safety system EyeSight wouldn’t let them. They tried the Forrester on the road too. We get to enjoy hearing Alan mangle a description of how the clever and good Lineartronic transmission works. Andrew and Alan are surprised at how nice the Outback is on the road. Andrew is amazed at how much the Outback can do off the road, on normal tires. Both are very impressed by the EyeSight system capabilities. Alan and Andrew enjoyed the Forrester on the road.

FORD RECREATES HISTORIC AD

In a recreation of their historic ad, Ford has had an RS2000 pictured being pulled over by a police-liveried Focus RS. To read more click here.

REAR VIEW PODCAST

Don't forget the new show from the team at Motoring Podcast, Rear View, where we talk to fascinating people from the motoring universe. To go listen to the episodes already released on iTunes click here.

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