News   GLOBAL  |  Apr 02, 2020
 8.6K     0 
News   GLOBAL  |  Apr 01, 2020
 39K     0 
News   GLOBAL  |  Apr 01, 2020
 4.9K     0 

Would you buy an EV from a Chinese OEM?

  • Yes

    Votes: 13 14.3%
  • No

    Votes: 62 68.1%
  • Maybe

    Votes: 16 17.6%

  • Total voters
    91
I don't think "boring" is a problem with EVs, it's a problem with most cars, and most architecture, these days. I can count on one hand the number of interesting modern car designs, and then on the other the number of buildings built in the last 20 years, that I've seen. Most modern architects are hacks.
 
We have the ability to build in sound systems that give the operator whatever feedback they desire

off-the-highway private racetracks where those who want that thrill can indulge themselves
Already happening. What's missing is the grassroots 'shade tree' mechanic element.


I'm with a group that has to procure very small amounts of steam locomotive coal, and it's not clear that even as a heritage matter that will be permitted much longer.
And that would be sad for heritage preservation and operators like SSR and the Muskoka Steamships.
 
I think displacing diesel from agriculture is going to be tricky!


It's definitely not an easy problem. There are a couple garage-sized startups working on it (Linttas) but they're not going to get very far without additional battery density improvements.

Automation, like John-Deer's fully self-driving tractor/combine (legitimate self-driving like a Waymo, not a Tesla) line, help with this problem significantly. Taking the farmer out of the cab allows for increasing efficiency (lower horsepower equipment moving slower but 24/7). Combine rental, including the driver, for harvest is already a thing. So long as it's completed in the scheduled timeframe at a reasonable cost nobody will care if it needs 3/4 unmanned combines that peridically ask to be plugged in rather than 2 manned ones.

This prototype has a 1000kWh battery. Probably not enough but also not terrible for "night-shift". Solid-state Li-ion batteries would increase that in a few years once large-scale production is online. They're expecteding to start selling these in 2026; wholly autonomous tractors (diesel) are available now.

IMG_KopievanJDS21a.jpg



Large-scale (1000+ acre) farming in 2035 could be very interesting. These tend to have capital to invest in reducing operations costs. Smaller scale farming will no-doubt be done much as today, including the financial struggles.
 
Last edited:
I don't think "boring" is a problem with EVs, it's a problem with most cars, and most architecture, these days. I can count on one hand the number of interesting modern car designs, and then on the other the number of buildings built in the last 20 years, that I've seen. Most modern architects are hacks.
And they’re all so big. Surely we can meet current crash safety regs without making every passenger vehicle so wide and long? I’d like to see North American regs changed to encourage Bolt-sized EVs rather than EV crossovers.

What I like about my 2014 VW is the tactile knobs, no screen to fiddle with to adjust the seat warmers, etc.
 
And they’re all so big. Surely we can meet current crash safety regs without making every passenger vehicle so wide and long? I’d like to see North American regs changed to encourage Bolt-sized EVs rather than EV crossovers.

What I like about my 2014 VW is the tactile knobs, no screen to fiddle with to adjust the seat warmers, etc.
I thought so too. Tesla actually does a pretty good job of making the two scroll wheels on the steering wheel control those functions. Seat warmer and steering wheel warmer can go on auto and it's pretty good at selecting the right setting based on temperature.
 
It shouldn't be a surprise that Rivian is burning cash. If the legacy automakers can't figure out how to turn a profit from EVs. Then what chance does a smaller company like Rivian have?
Looks like Tesla is shedding some labour costs. Not to suggest that Tesla is failing, but instead to show that they're going through market corrections, same as any other industry.

 
Last edited:
CATL (the largest EV battery maker in the world) has just released a battery pack for buses that they warranty for 15 years, 1.5m KM.



They have also developed different technology to make high power LFP (iron phosphate) batteries that charging 10-80% in 10 minutes, even down to -10C. This has been a weakness of the cheaper/more abundant material LFP battery chemistry that doesn't contain cobalt or nickel.

 
On my last trip into the states, I was at a meeting where a couple of members of our group responsible for some facilities in Texas were advocating heavily that we needed to get involved in autonomous transport. I was not directly involved in the conversation, but was listening heavily, as I have leaned towards the dubious side of early adaptation of these technologies for a number of reasons, and felt that there was much more work to be done towards acceptance in the public realm. Well, I may have been wrong in my thinking, and not for the first time. The ‘Aurora Driver’ is coming to Texas this year, and the list of companies they are working with is impressive.

Many reading this thread may be very familiar with this company but I was not, and thought it more then interesting..

The website is worth a look: https://aurora.tech/. and this note dating from 2023 is worth reading: https://blog.aurora.tech/progress/why-wall-street-is-backing-aurora

Autonomous Trucks may not be in the GTA in 2025, and there may be work to be done in the regulatory fields as yet before that happens. But perhaps sooner than we think, autonomous alternative fuelled trucks could be a reality. Then, shortly thereafter, the same with tractors and combines - the Ultimate Dream, watching the Grey Cup with your feet up on the couch, popcorn and a cold beverage at hand, glancing out the window as the autonomous combine completes another pass…..
 
On my last trip into the states, I was at a meeting where a couple of members of our group responsible for some facilities in Texas were advocating heavily that we needed to get involved in autonomous transport. I was not directly involved in the conversation, but was listening heavily, as I have leaned towards the dubious side of early adaptation of these technologies for a number of reasons, and felt that there was much more work to be done towards acceptance in the public realm. Well, I may have been wrong in my thinking, and not for the first time. The ‘Aurora Driver’ is coming to Texas this year, and the list of companies they are working with is impressive.

Many reading this thread may be very familiar with this company but I was not, and thought it more then interesting..

The website is worth a look: https://aurora.tech/. and this note dating from 2023 is worth reading: https://blog.aurora.tech/progress/why-wall-street-is-backing-aurora

Autonomous Trucks may not be in the GTA in 2025, and there may be work to be done in the regulatory fields as yet before that happens. But perhaps sooner than we think, autonomous alternative fuelled trucks could be a reality. Then, shortly thereafter, the same with tractors and combines - the Ultimate Dream, watching the Grey Cup with your feet up on the couch, popcorn and a cold beverage at hand, glancing out the window as the autonomous combine completes another pass…..
I don't understand the whole concept of autonomous vehicles. What's the point of purchasing a car and never driving it? Why not just take transit if you want someone else to do the driving for you? Why spend thousands on a car? Plus autonomous vehicles are still vehicles. They'll get stuck in traffic and create congestion.
 
With respect, the post is not about personal transport on a transit sense. Moving freight by truck is a complex business where lack of drivers, low wages, issues with training and safety, and railways lack of interest in a market literally at their front door,
provides impetus for technologies such as this, to step forward, and provide service, and probably service with some advantages.Your point re congestion is valid, but if you prefer your Ontario Grown Asparagus**** to be readily available at the freshest it can be, then trucks, and more trucks are a fact of life. Not to mention your Amazon addiction, Wayfair, etc……

Note*** Ontarios Asparagus is coming to market. Fresh local asparagus beats Product of Mexico ten times out of ten. I would be making tracks to St. Lawrence early for the best.
 
With respect, the post is not about personal transport on a transit sense. Moving freight by truck is a complex business where lack of drivers, low wages, issues with training and safety, and railways lack of interest in a market literally at their front door,
provides impetus for technologies such as this, to step forward, and provide service, and probably service with some advantages.Your point re congestion is valid, but if you prefer your Ontario Grown Asparagus**** to be readily available at the freshest it can be, then trucks, and more trucks are a fact of life. Not to mention your Amazon addiction, Wayfair, etc……

Note*** Ontarios Asparagus is coming to market. Fresh local asparagus beats Product of Mexico ten times out of ten. I would be making tracks to St. Lawrence early for the best.
I work in Intermodal for CN rail. I deal with truck drivers everyday. You're never going to get an autonomous truck to come into the intermodal yard and grabs it's container full of Ontario asparagus. Not unless CN completely redesigns their intermodal yard to accommodate autonomous trucks. Which isn't going to happen anytime soon. I assure you.

Also note you put "lack of drivers" & "low wages" right next to each other. Hmmmmm,,, interesting.
 
I work in Intermodal for CN rail. I deal with truck drivers everyday. You're never going to get an autonomous truck to come into the intermodal yard and grabs it's container full of Ontario asparagus. Not unless CN completely redesigns their intermodal yard to accommodate autonomous trucks. Which isn't going to happen anytime soon. I assure you.

Also note you put "lack of drivers" & "low wages" right next to each other. Hmmmmm,,, interesting.
If all you need is a driver in the yard (let's say), then once the truck is at the gate, it can continue without a driver for the potentially hundreds of km to its end destination. I am not sure what aspect of an intermodal yard you believe makes vehicle autonomy impossible. There are autonomous shunt trucks already. Keep in mind that teleoperation will be a big thing as well, where remote operators intervene in complex scenarios that the autonomous system cannot handle.


And don't discount CN redesigning intermodal yards to accommodate. They invested in TuSimple--a now defunct autonomous trucking company.
 
I don't understand the whole concept of autonomous vehicles. What's the point of purchasing a car and never driving it? Why not just take transit if you want someone else to do the driving for you? Why spend thousands on a car? Plus autonomous vehicles are still vehicles. They'll get stuck in traffic and create congestion.
The big prize of autonomous vehicle technology is basically public transit. Lower cost, but still high margin Uber-like service. It's a market that could be worth trillions.

There are smaller opportunities, but autonomous long haul freight is not insignificant. Then there are more out there ideas. An autonomous step van + a humanoid robot dropping Amazon packages on doorsteps. Such robots may seem like overkill, but they should be able to deliver a large percentage of packages and they may soon be cheap enough to deploy for that purpose. More likely in sunny California that snowy Montreal of course.


 
If all you need is a driver in the yard (let's say), then once the truck is at the gate, it can continue without a driver for the potentially hundreds of km to its end destination. I am not sure what aspect of an intermodal yard you believe makes vehicle autonomy impossible. There are autonomous shunt trucks already. Keep in mind that teleoperation will be a big thing as well, where remote operators intervene in complex scenarios that the autonomous system cannot handle.


And don't discount CN redesigning intermodal yards to accommodate. They invested in TuSimple--a now defunct autonomous trucking company.
That video is sped up for a reason, autonomous shunt trucks are incredibly slow. A skilled shunter would be more productive than 3 of these combined.
 

Back
Top