Issue #7 • June 17, 2022
Happy Friday! This week in mobility... NHTSA sheds light on the safety behind self-driving technology and more.
Need to Know
The US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued two reports for the first time, highlighting crashes and fatalities involving AVs and vehicles equipped with advanced driver-assisted systems (ADAS). Waymo reported the most incidents involving AVs, and Tesla reported the most crashes involving ADAS.
These new reports come from a standing general order issued last year by NHTSA, requiring automotive companies to report crashes involving AVs and Level 2 driver-assist systems. The agency requires crashes to be documented where ADAS or autonomous technologies were used within 30 seconds of impact.
While this is an interesting first report, it’s just that. The numbers don’t tell the whole story as the information included doesn’t necessarily capture key contextual details or the criteria by which companies report incidents. That said, NHTSA expects to release new crash data monthly to increase industry transparency — definitely something to watch.
In Other News
🏛️ Regulatory. The Biden administration laid out its plans for a national EV charging network, aiming to install 500,000 chargers by 2030. US Transport Secretary Pete Buttigieg met with airline executives yesterday to get ahead of the summer travel season. Automakers are asking Congress again to extend the EV tax credit. And the UK ended its electric car subsidies, concentrating now on EV charging infrastructure.
🚘 Cars. Stellantis plans to launch Level 3 self-driving cars in 2024 using lidars from Valeo. Tesla introduced a new Enhanced Autopilot option for all of its models in Australia. And Ferrari says it will limit the autonomous capabilities of its cars to Level 2 or Level 2+ to preserve the “emotion” of the driving experience.
🚛 Trucks & Buses. Mo Chen, a Canadian entrepreneur who co-founded TuSimple’s autonomous truck business, launched Hydron, a company making hydrogen-powered trucks with Level 4 autonomous technology. And Switch, Mitsubishi Fuso, Van Hool, and Scania were among the companies that launched electric trucks this week.
🛴 Micromobility. UPS began testing mini electric vans based on four-wheeled e-bikes for last-mile delivery in the US. Lime is testing out a new shared electric motorbike in California. Dott, a European micro-mobility operator, announced an expansion to its e-bike and e-scooter information in Google Maps. Striemo, a Honda subsidiary, launched a three-wheel e-scooter with stabilization technology. And Vaimoo announced the Forte Evo E-Bike for public transit.
⚡ Mobility Ecosystem. Wejo, a smart mobility cloud company, announced its Autonomous Vehicle Operating System (AV-OS) to accelerate AV adoption by expanding access to connected vehicle data. And Otonomo, another smart mobility company, launched solutions to support mobility as a service, electric vehicle adoption, and urban planning.
Autonomous Tech. Vueron, a Korean LIDAR manufacturer, received approval from the California DMV to test autonomous vehicles on public roads in California. And Nvidia filed a patent to help autonomous cars detect emergency vehicles.
📍Go to Market. Boring Company received unanimous approval from city officials for expanding its tunnels to downtown Las Vegas. Amazon plans to begin drone deliveries in California this year. Hyundai will pilot its autonomous car-hailing RoboRide service in Seoul. And Sensible 4, a Finish autonomous driving company, is testing its shuttle bus on public roads in Japan.
💼 New Business. Canada Post committed to going fully electric by 2040, with half its fleet fully electric by 2030.
👩💼 Leadership. The London Electric Vehicle Company’s CEO stepped down, with Alex Nan, their current chairman, taking his place.
⚖️ Litigation. Audi filed a lawsuit in a Munich court against Nio, a Chinese electric vehicle maker, over an alleged infringement of Audi’s trademark rights. And Velodyne Lidar filed a patent infringement complaint with the US International Trade Commission against Ouster.
🤝 Partnerships. Sony and Honda announced their joint venture is now a separate entity called Sony Honda Mobility Inc., whose first EV is set to debut in 2025. Porsche turned to startup builder UP.Labs to solve its biggest problems. Samsara and Free2move partnered to develop an integrated solution for commercial fleets. Grubhub and Cartken will begin delivering food to university students via autonomous robots. SafeAI, Siemens, and Obayashi are collaborating on retrofitted autonomous, zero-emission, off-road heavy vehicles. RoboSense partnered with WeRide for large-scale commercial autonomous mobility. ONE Technologies and BMW plan to achieve an iX EV with 600 miles of range. Audi and Nunam, a nonprofit startup, are looking at recycling retired E-Tron batteries for electric rickshaws. And TTTech Auto and BlackBerry QNX partnered to close the performance-safety gap for autonomous vehicles.
✨ Investments. Tesla filed for a three-way stock split to make its shares more affordable. Phoenix Motor announced the closing of its $15.75 million IPO. Siemens invested $25 million in WiTricity to advance wireless charging for electric vehicles. Continental invested in Motovis, a Chinese autonomous vehicle tech startup, as part of its Series C funding round. Blink Charging acquired SemaConnect, further expanding its network and capabilities. Hyzon Motors expanded in Germany with the acquisition of ORTEN Betriebs and ORTEN Electric Trucks. And Overair raised $145 million to bring its eVTOL prototype to fruition.
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