Environmental issues, energy and electric cars
Right after Ford switched to NACS, GM has joined the party. With the top 3 US EV makers on NACS and CCS left with the foreign makers (and Stellantis which just started doing EVs) CCS is dead. Except for $7B in government subsidies. They ruined the CCS charging network, but maybe if they think about it, we can find a way to get this money to doing things the superior way Tesla did it without subsidies.
Austin, TX, April 1 2023 - Tesla announced today that it's new low-cost car, known as the Model 2, will not come standard with a steering wheel or pedals. That's not because it will only work with Tesla's "Full Self Driving" system, but rather because they have been made virtual, through AI and the interior camera used for driver monitoring.
Tesla’s “Investor Day” caused much disappointment — even tanking Tesla stock — because there was no big announcement as expected, notably of their new low-cost, next generation vehicle. However, they actually let out a number of important details abut the vehicle, most of what you need to know — other than when you will be able to buy it. I calculate the list price of the new car will be around $26,000 -- under $14,000 with rebates in some states.
Read more at Forbes.com in Tesla Did Introduce The Model 2 This Week At $26,000, But Kept It Quiet
Tesla has tested some new Superchargers that will allow non-Teslas to use them. These stalls have the built in CCS adapter known as the "Magic Dock" but otherwise have the same short charging cord common to Tesla Superchargers — a cord that can’t readily reach the charging ports on many non-Tesla cars. We may see some fights.
Read more at Forbes.com in Telsa CCS ‘Magic Docks’ Revealed, But With Short Cords, Can Non-Tesla Cars Really Charge At Them?
Rental car companies are starting to rent EVs, which is great for many rentals. But Hertz and Avis/Budget have a fat fee if you don't return it recharged, and on some rentals that can be a real burden as you can't just "stop by the gas station for 5 minutes on the way to the airport." Though if your hotel has charging, it's even easier to refill than a gas car.
So I examine what all the rental companies do and what the fee means and how they charge the cars in this Forbes.com article.
An annoying paper argues that self-driving cars will use huge amounts of compute and thus have a giant carbon footprint. The boring way that it's wrong is that the compute load will not grow as they suggest.
The more interesting way that it's wrong is that self-driving EVs will draw most of their power from no-emission generation sources like solar and nuclear, even if they do use a lot of power.
Here's a digest of some of my recent postings on Forbes.com
A filing suggests Tesla may be putting a radar back in their cars, but this time a high resolution radar, which is a bit like the LIDAR they swore was a crutch. It would be a good idea.
Generally it doesn't make sense (and isn't that green) to have off-grid solar compared to grid-tied solar. However, a new company sells a self-contained solar EV charging station for parking lots which they claim is cheaper than on-grid, because you can just get it delivered in one day with no permits, planning, wiring or construction.
It's true that all those factors are now the biggest element of charging and solar installations.