Surprise Telsa Rival Emerges from China

A wild Tesla rival appeared! From nowhere, Chinese electronics company LeEco has unveiled its first electric car, designed to be a direct rival to Tesla Motors’ Model S electric sedan, while adding more self-driving and connectivity features

The vehicle, called the LeSEE (a name that gives me unpleasant flashbacks to Final Fantasy XIII), is only a concept car for the time being, but the ambitious company hopes it will help usher in an age of Chinese dominance in the electric car market, with a number of other local companies set to launch battery-powered cars in the next few years.

“When everyone is questioning us over our ability to develop a car like this and is laughing at us, we are still able to be here and show you this car […] I am so emotional,” said an excited Jia Yueting, co-founder and CEO of LeEco, at a launch event in Beijing on Wednesday (via Reuters).

Jia even claims that LeEco hopes to give its electric cars away for free one day, making its money back on ads delivered to the vehicles through its connectivity platform.

“Our cars’ pricing model will be similar to pricing models for cellphones and TV sets we sell today,” he said. “One day our cars will be free […] We are getting there some day.”

The CITE That No One Will Live In

When it comes to technology, people are constantly told to test it before release. Car makers are being warned that they need to slow down the release of automated driving in order to help people find and understand the risks and dangers of having a machine make decisions which will ultimately affect thousands on a daily basis, and with large companies like Tesla and Apple looking to get in on the automated car business, everyone wants to be safe before their cars hit the road. The site for Apple’s testing may have become revealed, though, in a brand new CITE.

No that is not a spelling mistake, CITE stands for The Center for Innovation Testing and Evaluation, a 15 square miles of desert located within New Mexico. Set to cost around $1 billion and begin sometime this year, Pegasus Global Holding will begin the construction of the city for 35,000 people, but no one will ever live there.

Dubbed a “City lab” the city will feature everything from hospitals and highways to schools and could be used for testing self-driving transportation and green energy systems, with a research campus designed to help people study and understand technology on a city-wide scale before it’s released to the real world. With an estimated operational date of 2018, it could be a while before we see a city that’s fully automated, which is all good for us as long as they don’t name any of the systems Skynet or the Red Queen.

Tesla Model 3 Receives 325,000 Preorders in Just One Week

There was no doubt that the Tesla Model 3 was going to be a big hit after last week saw the newly announced electric vehicle receive 180,000 preorders in just 24 hours. One week on and Tesla has revealed that the preorders kept flowing in, with the number already having reached 325,000.

If all of the preorders are converted into sales when the Model 3 is released next year, Tesla is set to make around $14 billion from sales of the Model 3 alone which will make it the single biggest one-week launch of any product ever. Due to the required $1000 preorder deposit too, Tesla have already made $325 million just for the orders so far and although the deposit is refundable for those who change their mind, it should certainly keep Tesla going until the Model 3 makes it to market. In a tweet today, Musk revealed that despite the cap on preordering two Model 3’s for each person, only 5 percent of customers ordered two cars

Furthermore, the EV firm boasts that they got this huge amount of preorders without advertisement or paid endorsements with only the enthusiasm and passion of the Tesla team and the fans who believe in them and their vision having pushed them and the Model 3 to this level of popularity. In fact, Musk himself was shocked at the number of preorders, stating on Saturday that he expected only between a quarter and a half of the 235,000 preorders that had already been placed although now he expects that it could hit half a million before the second part of the reveal later in the year.

The Model 3’s enormous popularity could just be the stepping stone that electric vehicles need to go truly mainstream, a dream that I am sure Musk and many others share. For other manufacturers hoping to release their new electric offerings in the near future, the bar has certainly been set high by Tesla and the Model 3 is the success story that many will hope to match.

Self-Driving Trucks Hit The Roads In Europe

When it comes to vehicles, there are two new technologies that people are looking forward to. First off there are electric vehicles, with Tesla’s new Model 3 getting billions of dollars worth of pre-orders, then there is the move to automated vehicles. With driverless vehicles gaining momentum, a set of self-driving trucks have hit the roads of Europe in a demonstration that’s set to show the technology off to the world.

Six manufacturers took part in the European Truck Platooning Challenge, courtesy of the Dutch Government. Truck platooning refers to the ability for automated trucks to follow one another in close procession, making use of a slipstream to reduce carbon dioxide and fuel usage.

Travelling from different parts of Europe to the Port of Rotterdam in the Netherlands, with companies like Volvo and Daimler watching as their vehicles picked up cargo from the port before heading back to different locations all around Europe.

With self-driving trucks already looking to be tested in the UK within the year, it could be sooner than we think before large companies start using automated vehicles to deliver their goods. With companies like Google looking to create and release a self-driving car just one of many self-driving ideas, including a self-driving pram, you could soon get to put your feet up and enjoy a movie on those long road trips.

Automobilista Pulled From Steam Due To Copyright Claim

We all like community content, giving us everything from new maps and worlds to explore to little details like a new weapon or car design. Sadly when it comes to games, something inside the game can often lead to disagreements and arguments, something that seems to have resulted in Automobilista pulled from Steam.

Posting on their forum, Reiza shared the news that they were pulling their game from Steam:

“As is known, Automobilista packages a variety of officially licensed cars and brands alongside fictionalized, originally created content. The claim in question does not make any specific reference to content present in Automobilista supposedly in infringement of the party’s copyright—until it does, our belief is that it has no merit.

We have already taken the appropriate measures to resolve the issue ASAP, but in accordance to Valve’s policy, the process may take a few days to be completed.”

The takedown may be part of Steam policy, but if you won’t mention what copyright is being breached or how it’s hard to see the claim doing anything but resulting in the game being removed from Steam for a few days.With the game featuring both official content sponsored by company,

With the game featuring both official content sponsored by the companies behind the cars, to community created content it will be hard to find out what content has caused the copyright claim if any.

Take A Look At The First Driverless Racecar

With more and more people being interested in driver-less technology it was only a matter of time before it went from the streets to the race track. Formula E have already announced their intention to start a driverless championship, but you can even get a glimpse at the designs behind the first driverless racecar.

Roborace, the world’s first driverless series, released renderings of what their first designs for what autonomous racing cars could look like, and they do not disappoint. Designed by Chief Design Officer Daniel Simon, known for his work on Oblivion and Tron: Legacy, the designs look perfect for a vehicle that no longer has to worry about their driver, offering people the chance to enjoy great looking vehicles doing insane speeds around a track.

While we still have to wait till 2017 before we get to enjoy the series featuring all-electric cars, just seeing the first design reminds us of its potential.

With a trailer to go alongside the design rendering, when will we get to see the next design? With the ability for anyone in the automated vehicle business to take part in the championship, we could soon see designs from big names in both technology and cars manufacturing as they get ready to view and race their cars doing high-speed around tracks.

Lincolns “Connectivity” Takes Luxury Car Status to an Extreme

Cars have a single purpose, getting you from A to B. Sometimes you do want to enjoy the journey a little more so you splash out on a nicer car, a concept that goes to the extreme in the line of luxury vehicles, something Lincolns new SUV concept titled the “Connectivity” has everything a luxury car needs and then some!

Okay, first off look at doors. The “Gull” doors open up and to help you get that extra few inches from the floor steps descend to pave your way through the arched entrance like a god. If that wasn’t enough then why not enjoy the four screens built into the backs of the headrests. Instagram, Facebook maybe even Netflix while you’re parked up waiting for the kids to come out from school.

With all the modern safety features like automatic braking and a lane keeping system (designed to keep you in lane surprisingly), you will also get to avoid those tight parking spaces thanks to the four cameras that sit around the vehicle to give you that overhead image of how close to denting your new car you really are.

With all these you could be asking what else could they fit in the vehicle? What do you keep in your boot because with the Connectivity you will be looking at your wardrobe. We are not joking, located at the back of the vehicle is a “custom wardrobe management system” which seems to make this vehicle seem at home in a spy movie.

Radio Attack Lets Hackers Drive Away Your Car

When it was revealed I couldn’t believe my eyes. Someone walks up to a car and its locked, someone else walks up and can instantly get in and at the press of a button start the engine, no key required. Wireless key technology is now employed in cars all over the world and allows for users to avoid the hassle of finding their car keys, sadly it looks like a radio attack lets hackers do exactly the same thing without you even knowing.

A group of german vehicle security experts have studied how the radio hack uses your keys to break into your own key. The whole principle of wireless keys is that the engine and the doors will only work when the keys are within a certain range of the vehicle, this means that if you aren’t near your car it’s just an expensive piece of metal and technology.

Munich-based automobile club, ADAC, tested a hacking technique that uses the principle of “amplification” to fool your car into believing that the keys are actually closer than they actually are. In total, their study found 24 different vehicles were vulnerable, and it wasn’t just one manufacturer that was involved, 19 different manufacturers were vulnerable to the radio attack. What does this mean? Using this kind of attack someone can walk up to your car, and using a small pocket amplification device, unlock and drive away your car. No alarms,

What does this mean? Using this kind of attack someone can walk up to your car, and using a small pocket amplification device, unlock and drive away your car. The total cost of this hack? $225 for the device. Compare that to the cost of the Audi A3, A4 and A6, Ford Galaxy, Mitsubishi Outlander, Renaults Traffic and countless other models that are vulnerable to this attack.

The technique works by “amplifying” your keys signal. In reality, what happens is the key fobs signal is relayed through a pair of radios. Is this an example of technology being made too smart, at the cost of security, in order to save us a few seconds of inconvenience?

Say Hello To A 3D Printed Car – The LM3D Swim

We’ve all heard about 3D printers, being able to create your everyday bits and bobs at home by just printing off a copy from your computer. There are even extreme examples where people have 3D printed bridges or even houses. The next step to bring this area of technology to everyday people is here, introducing the LM3D Swim, a 3D printed car.

The LM3D Swim is just that, a 3D printed car. The overall project goal is to make as much of the car as possible from 3D printing, which is currently 75% printed. Printed using a mix of plastic and carbon fibre, the LM3D Swim is designed to be safe but it’s currently undergoing its crash safety testing and will be completely checked out by the end of 2016.

With the ability to 3D print cars, can you imagine the customizable looks you can create? While the body will retain the same shape, picking your cars colours, from the body  to the dashboard could soon become as easy as selecting an option on your computer screen.

If you are interested in buying one of these then have no fear, Local Motors (the company behind the idea) is looking to gain support through a crowdfunding campaign in the middle of this year while the car will go on for sales at retail at the end of the year.

Volkswagen’s US Chief “Stepping Down”

Volkswagen (VW) is a well-known car manufacturer, or more recently due to the revelation that their cars had a system in place to produce “lower emissions” if it was tested at the time. The latest in a string of events for the company, the head of the United States branch of the company, Michael Horn, is stepping down.

With the revelation that at least 30 people knew about the illegal practise of fixing text results and the result being that certain cars are having to be pulled from the market before a “fix” can be implemented, losing the head of a branch isn’t a good sign for the company.

It should be noted that Horn isn’t listed in any of the investigations being carried out regarding this matter, and VW is still saying that senior management didn’t know about the software update that would cause it to produce “better” results for emission tests.

Following on from the concept that they could “fix” the cars that were producing illegal amounts of nitrogen oxide (including removing the illegal software update), the chief of California’s Air Resources Board (CARB) stated that it “may not be possible” to actually fix these vehicles.

With more and more cars being pulled and banned from sale due to the illegal software, one can only imagine the impact these vehicles are having both on the company and the environment.

Want to Watch a Movie in Your Self-Driving Car? Ford Wants You To!

We all know that Ford is one of many companies that are looking at self-driving cars. They’ve even tested their cars in the snow, a weather most of us don’t like driving in at the best of times. What do you do when you don’t have to drive? That half hour trip to and from work every day, or the four-hour drive to see family. Ford has an answer and that’s to keep you entertained with a movie in your self-driving car.

Ford has recently filed for, and obtained, a patent that relates to “autonomous vehicle entertainment system”.  What this actually means if you will be able to put your feet up as a screen comes down over the front of the car, letting you enjoy as the projector between your seats brings you the latest in entertainment.

That’s right, you will be able to enjoy a cinema experience while being driven around by your car. In flight movies built into your car doesn’t sound all that bad does it?

Personally, I like the idea of having something to do in your car, but would you feel safe staring at a screen while you are driven down the motorway at high speed with no one watching out for the broken car or driver that crashes into your favourite automated car.

Driverless Lorries Coming to the UK

When it comes to cars, there is one topic on every companies lips, driverless technology. The ability to take a car from your house to the shops, to work, and then back home without ever pressing the pedals or touching the steering wheel. From Formula E announcing that they will start racing driverless vehicles and London looking to get driverless pods within the year, what could be next? Driverless lorries.

The Department for Transport is keen on being seen as a forerunner for technology, from driverless cars to electric car charging roads. The latest plans seem to be creating a driverless “HGV platoon”, with up to 10 computer controlled lorries being driver mere metres away from one another. The trial for the project, set to take place later this year, will see the vehicles driving down the M6 with the front vehicle being driven by a person.

Some have been sceptical about the plan, though, with the president of the AA, Edmund King, saying that while it may work in other countries it might not be the right thing in the UK.

His reasoning for this doubt was that “The problem with the UK motorway network is that we have more entrances and exits of our motorways than any other motorways in Europe or indeed the world”.

While plans like these are great, I can see where King is coming from. Ten lorries blocking your exit on the road would be a pain. While having regular automated lorries would help reduce traffic in the long run and perhaps even ease congestion, I can see people be scared and sceptical until they are a regular sight on the roads.

Image courtesy of the Daily Mail

Tesla Can Sell Direct-To-Consumers With Indiana Bill Amendment

Tesla is probably the world’s most known electric cars, with everything from everyday vehicles to supercars, all powered by electricity without a drop of petrol in their engines. Tesla is unique though in that they sell directly to customers, skipping out middlemen and offering its models and services without any additional costs. This very practice is the backbone of Tesla’s sales, and it has received criticism in some states in the U.S. where dealers have been less than pleased with the model. In a recent battle with the state of Indiana, Tesla once again comes out on top as they can continue to sell direct-to-consumers.

The recent battle focuses on an amendment to a bill that would make it illegal for any manufacturers to sell cars directly to a consumer, an amendment which has now been removed from the bill in question. Tesla stated that rival company GM, who released an elective vehicle that would complete with the Model 3, pushed the bill through the state legislature, a move that would have effectively crippled Tesla’s current model for selling its cars. A spokesman for GM even stated that they supported the amendment and that “All industry participants should operate under the same rules and requirements on fundamental issues that govern how we sell, service, and market our products”.

Tesla is obviously happy about the removal of the amendment saying that their store at Keystone will “remain open indefinitely”. While happy, you have to argue, who does it benefit other than the resellers and dealers when a company can’t provide you with the equipment directly?

Nissan Develops Self Parking Chair

We use them every day, sometimes we pay a lot of attention and sometimes we just forget about them as we go about our business. I’m obviously talking about chairs, from the PL-6000 Gaming Chairs to those simple little pieces of plastic that you get at schools and offices. So why not use some technology to upgrade them, that’s what Nissan thought at least when they decided to use their self-driving car technology to upgrade their office chairs.

Typically self-driving cars can go from A to B, even managing to park themselves. Amongst the many car companies, Nissan is one of many companies working on self-driving cars for some time now, but in their latest reveal, they’ve put that very same technology into the office chairs, enabling them to “park themselves” at the clap of a hand.

Using computers hidden within the base of the chairs and a central command unit, the chairs are given their commands and return to their tables, neatly tucking away after a busy day in the office. In the video, it shows the chairs used in everything from boardrooms to classroom set ups.

While they have no plans to produce the technology and furniture for the public, I can see plenty of offices and schools wanting to save those precious moments at the end of the day when you just want to go home.

Apple Watch Summons Tesla Model S

Automated cars are all good and fancy, like the Google car, but there are some times when you just want to grab the wheel and drive. So why not enjoy the best of both worlds? If you are lucky enough to own a Tesla Model S you can, and now thanks to an app developer you can even do it from an apple watch.

Allen Wong created the app for the apple watch allowing you to see information about your Tesla car. With charging speed, position and temperature amongst the things you could see, keeping track of your car wasn’t difficult, but with its latest update (released Wednesday) you even have access to the new “summon” feature.

The summon feature enables Tesla owners to do just that to their car, ordering it to come to you. In the video below, you can see Mark Schey use the feature to start the car while simultaneously open the garage door. After the door is fully opened the car reverses out before closing the garage door, leaving your car in your driveway as you step out the front door.

With the ability to help save precious minutes on a busy morning the summon feature can be seen as both practical and a gimmick, transferring that from a keyfob to a different piece of technology like an Apple Watch raises questions about if it’s needed and if it could be misused by other people.

New York Going Green With Electric Streetcars

Electric cars are all the range, with Tesla dominating the market and Apple soon to enter the market. While they are expensive at the moment, electric cars are quickly becoming public transport with buses and shuttles cutting down emissions and traffic all in one go. The Netherlands started the process with their electric shuttles, and soon New York will join them.

One of the things that you associate with America is the street cars, the little red trams that run down steep roads and ring that bell as they approach. With an estimated cost of $2.5 billion, the new tram system will run between Astoria, Queens and Sunset Park, Brooklyn at around 16 miles in length. Named the Brooklyn Queens Connector (BQX for short), the new streetcar is estimated to take around three years in design with another four to build. With 7 years before you can ride the new system, 2020 will be a busy year for electric vehicles in new york.

With the average speed of the proposed streetcars being just 11.3mph, while not speedy you will get great views and reduced carbon emissions as you ride along the route shown above.

With some questioning why they are creating a new form of transport rather than adding dedicated bus routes along the waterfront, the new plans are already under fire before they even begin. What do you prefer? A new bus or do you think transport like streetcars are underrated?

What Year is This? The DeLorean is Back in Production!

Great Scott! It’s like something out of Back to the Future today, as the iconic car, made famous by the now legendary time travel movie is back in production!

Thanks to a recent change in the federal law, the facility in Humble, Texas, is now allowed to start making the car again, for what will be the first production of the car in thirty years. The DeLorean was first made famous all the way back in 1985, but it seems the movie fame just wasn’t enough to sell the already failing and somewhat ahead of its time (no pun intended) vehicle. This was further ruined after the founder, John DeLorean, who was arrested on drug charges, and the company went bankrupt shortly afterward.

The cars are iconic, a much-prized collectors item, especially so if they’re modded to look like time machines, flux capacitors and all. How successful the return will be still remains to be seen, or how the car will come back. Will it be improved, or will they keep that iconic if somewhat rubbish specification in its original format? The company is said to use the original authentic parts that have been stored away for many years, but how they use them is what could be interesting.

“It’s fantastic! It is a game changer for us. We’ve been wanting this to happen,” said Stephen Wynne, CEO of DeLorean Motors.

Want to get one ordered? There will be around 300 cars put into production, with the rollout starting at one per month and slowly moving to one per week. With a referb currently costing around $50,000 and a new one $100,000, not a lot of people will be opening their wallets, but the prospect of seeing more of these cars on the road again is one that’s just too fun not to think about.

Would you put in an order for one of the new DeLoreans? If you had the money for it of course!

Lead Behind Apple Car Leaves Company

Its been on the cards for a while that Apple has been looking at making a car. They’ve even gone so far as to invoke the wrath of Elon Musk by taking in staff straight from Tesla. The Apple Car project hasnot been shown off to the public yet, but it’s already caught people’s attention, it would seem to be in trouble though with the lead behind the project leaving the company.

Steve Zadesky, an employee with an impressive 16 years at Apple, is said to have been running the secret project behind the companies exploration into vehicles for two years; Zadesky is departing from the company for personal reasons.

Zadesky started for Apple in 1999 and has worked on their first iPod’s and iPhones, meaning he has been there to see some of their greatest moments. With a recent expansion for the electric car project, offering to triple their staff from 600 to almost two thousand, the projects green light for 2019 looks to be getting closer and closer.

This latest revelation could be yet another to a long line of knocks that the project has taken, with reports coming in that they have not only had trouble laying out goals for the project but that they have been given “ambitious deadlines” which the teams involved feel might not be attainable.

People leaving companies can come for various reasons, personal or professional, but the biggest threat is that leaders of projects and experts in their areas leave when the project is at its most vulnerable. If the information is correct we wish Zadesky the best in the future and look forward to seeing Apple’s progress with this project.

A Sword Made Entirely From Post-It Notes!?

Epic weapons, we’ve all seen them. You’ve been in a video game or watching a movie and suddenly your mouth drops open as you see a weapon you just wish was real so that you could hold it in your hands (or maybe even stand on it). From the classic hum of a lightsaber to the jagged edges of a diamond pickaxe we’ve all wanted to see them. Some people forge swords of steel while others carve them from wood so that you can see the pickaxe fly like a boomerang. What you’ve probably never done is made a kickass sword from post-it notes.

Based in Rome, Italy, Marco Ercoli is an artist with a unique twist on his sculptures; all of his sculptures are made from post-it notes. The sword pictured above is made up of 4,000 post-it notes is a complete one to one scale with an actual Katana, albeit a little more colorful.

The hand grenade shown is made up from 1,000 post-it notes or the sculpture titled “I Love America” (the pistol shown below) made up from 3,000 post-it notes. If these weren’t enough, why not try “The Sheep Stand Far From The Rainbow” (the absolutely amazing 1:1 replica of a car) with what I can only consider being countless post-it notes.

 

Time to waste some office supplies?

Tesla Model 3 Will Be Released

Tesla has been pioneers in the electric car field, this has helped by charismatic CEO Elon Musk who has pushed Tesla firmly into the mainstream with innovations that capture consumer imagination. Tesla now plans to launch the “Model 3” with speculation that it will be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show on March 1st, 2016; this new model will sit alongside the current range that includes the model S and X.

Tesla’s chief designer Franz von Holzhausen had stated that the Model 3 will be conveyed to journalists and the public alike at the 2015 Detroit Auto Show, but that year has well and truly passed without a sign of Tesla’s new model. Now, Tesla’s spokesman Khobi Brooklyn has confirmed that the Model 3 will follow the original plan of it being released in March of this year, a slight caveat to this is that the car is not expected to be on general sale until around 2017.

As for the price, reports suggest that it will be around the $35,000 mark (£24,103.85) or around £30,000 once various taxes have been added on. Reports also suggest that this car will be limited to 300,000 units, although, this could change depending on the popularity etc.

 

Tesla’s projects are always worth following and this one should be no different.

Nvidia Showcase Drive Technology @ CES 2016

CES 2016: Nvidia are paving the way for innovation in the driving world. Their new Drive PX2 computer is one of the most powerful devices they’ve ever created, allowing for a huge range of smart and connected features for next-generation vehicles. The hardware was up and running at the show, showing off their pedestrian detection systems, a vital component for any self-driving/autonomous car.

The software can quickly scan and monitor threats to the vehicle instantaneously.

PX2 is capable of powering multiple connected displays, allowing for cameras, AR overlays, dashboard displays and more, with extensive customisation in terms of design and layout.

You can bet that the best of the best cars in the near future will be powered by the green teams hardware and having seen some of it in action, I really can’t wait to see it on the roads!

Individual Uses Lighter While Refuelling Car And Sets Fire To It.

Indeed, thought this was self-explanatory but there you go, The Russian Independent Television is reporting as of late today (January 5th, 2016) that an Individual has accidentally set fire to their car while using a lighter near the fuel pump nozzle while routinely filling the vehicle up.

Below are the images of the incident, there not particularly graphic, but they do show a fire breaking out near a person and they are shocking, therefore, I thought I would pre-warn just in case.

As you can see, the fire is breaking out near the car, the individual had apparently held their lighter with the aim of seeing clearly what they were doing while filling up the car. The person then pulled the refuelling gun out of the car once they had spotted the fire.

Unfortunately this made it worse as fuel splashed out onto the pavement and also onto the car, it is unclear as to the outcome of this incident as of writing.

I did not think in today’s modern world I would need to say this, but please, no one try this at home, gasoline is highly flammable and diesel is a highly combustible liquid that can be extremely dangerous. Always take precautions and never treat it with anything other than respect and caution. 

Automotive Companies Choose Microsoft At CES

The Automotive industry is an avenue with which tech companies are always striving to exploit, from self-driving cars, clever Sat Nav that manages to avoid rivers to the self-aware AI system that has become ubiquitous for many branded vehicles. Now, four further automotive companies have announced partnerships with Microsoft with the aim of enhancing their computing power.

The four companies who have confirmed a working relationship at CES in Las Vegas (Where the gang at eTeknix insert plug here) are Volvo, Nissan, Harman and engineering partner IAV. These companies join a growing list for Microsoft which also include Toyota, Ford, Qoros (Chinese automotive manufacturing company) and Delphi (UK manufacturing company)

Microsoft envisage that every car will be connected to the Internet and strangely to other cars and will also be a “Companion within your digital life”. The following is a quick summary of how Volvo, Nissan, Harman and IAV plan to integrate Microsoft tech into their cars.

  • Volvo – plan to interrogate Microsoft Band 2 with a Windows 10 smartphone and also the Volvo Call Universal App. This means that consumers can interact with the Microsoft Band by holding down the “action button” and requesting a function
  • Harman – Plan to offer drivers the ability to access the Office 365 productivity suite within the Harman infotainment systems. This means that drivers will be able to interact with Office 365 via an intelligent personal assistant software to schedule meetings etc.
  • IAV – Plan to use Windows 10 Continuum to stream Windows 10 via a mobile device directly to a car’s dashboard, giving drivers access to Windows 10 features and apps such as Cortana, Skype for Business, Calendar, Outlook and Groove Music.
  • Nissan – Plan to incorporate Connect Telematics Systems (CTS) which will be powered by Microsoft Azure. This will be incorporated into the LEAF and Infiniti models.

Tech will always be pushed into the automotive industry with the aim of offering consumers a different experience, companies will need to make sure any software is secure and, therefore, cannot be remotely hacked. Drivers will also need to be mindful and not be distracted by the many tech options, imagine attempting to schedule a meeting while travelling at 60 miles an hour down a motorway.

Image courtesy of digitaldealer

Mechanic “Invents” Water Fuelled Car

I don’t think this gentleman will be on the Christmas lists of Shell or BP anytime soon, anyway, a car mechanic from India has claimed to have designed a new and rather a cheap way of fuelling a car and it arrives apparently in the form of water.

The gentleman in question goes by the name of Mohammad Raees Markani who has been modifying an “800 cc engine” for the last five years. He believes to have found a new alternative form of eco-transportation by using a mix of water and carbides (a compound composed of carbon)

Below is a video of this apparent achievement, amazingly, a one-litre mix of this potion costs around 2p. Mr Markani explained that his car “runs on acetylene gas” which is formed from a chemical reaction between calcium carbide and water. He also stated that he needed to make various changes to the engine with the aim of helping the performance of the car.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wIWpLTVIFSo

If true, it’s astonishing considering Mr Markani has never been to school and also cannot read or write, it has also been noted that he began to experiment with various techniques around 5 years ago and has since made an efficient engine that runs on water.

Various high-profile companies are said to be interested and Mr Markani is open to offers, if they meet his one condition, this is, any plant or factory that is established in order to manufacture vehicles that utilize this technique will need to be built in his hometown of Madhya Pradesh. Mr Markani explained that he wants “things to change in my hometown

It will be very noteworthy to follow the development of this project and if true, could be a turning point for both eco-friendly vehicles and also the environment, well, until we run out of the water that is.

Rolls Royce SUV Anyone?

Well, I did not expect to see this in 2016, Rolls Royce are known for the final word in automotive luxury and this is perfectly conveyed by the companies expensive fleet of vehicles that are transported to international clients. Rolls Royce is synonymous for innovation and if these reports come to fruition, consumers could be feasting their eyes on an SUV edition.

Below is an image to convey this potential vehicle, it’s not exactly subtle, various reports state that it will be named “Cullinan” after a non-carbonado gem-quality diamond and will be limited to 1000 units worldwide.

As for specs, reports suggest it may be “equipped with the Rolls-Royce Phantom V12 engine with the same specifications” as well as a four-wheel drive system which will bring benefits to the overall travel of the vehicle. As for the design, it will be compelling to note both the weight and also handling of this potential saloon considering it will have all the bells and whistles for comfort, I also wonder what the Miles to gallon ratio of fuel will be?

If this vehicle comes to pass then it will be interesting to see both how fast the clientele snaps up this new design and also the types of luxurious locations where they will in doubt be shipped to, you can just imagine someone wrecking it after crashing that front end.

image courtesy of autocarsconcept

Tesla Supercharger Catches Fire

Tesla cars are well-known sites all around the world now with the Model S being known as a rather amazing piece of technology. The electric sports car contains a ludicrous mode which can accelerate 0-60 in less than 3 seconds, a rather impressive sight. The S model, however, is getting some bad attention in Norway when it went to top up.

Tesla’s electric cars are known for being the first step into reliable and everyday usable cars, however, a particular owner got a surprise during a routine action in Norway. After pulling up the a supercharger station, and inserting its plug for the lithium-ion battery pack, the vehicle caught fire. The owner was not at the car when the incident happens so no one was harmed, but as you can see from the image above, the car was not so lucky.

While people are quick to argue and debate over what could have caused this user one Reddit user, bjornnyland, was quick to point out that this was a temporary station which actually delivered 13kW more than a standard station, which typically deliver 105 kW. After stating that he had used the charging point several times and that it had stopped on more than one occasion, he was quick to state that it may or may not have had something to do with the fire.

Details Revealed for Honda’s Second-Generation Acura NSX Hybrid

Global Japanese car manufacturer Honda had officially announced earlier this year (2015) plans to produce a second-generation of its Acura NSX sports car, the vehicle itself is stunning as conveyed by the images below.  Before you decide to order one may I also confirm the price structure that has also been announced, if you would like to own one then you would need to find a spare $156,000 (£104,610.23) to be precise, this will climb to a whopping $205,000 dollars (£137,468.57) for a fully specced up version when it goes on sale in the US.

If you thought this was the only cost, think again, the car giant also expects buyers to pay an additional$1,800 (£1,207.04) transportation fee to Honda who will then arrange for the vehicle to be delivered by a towing company via freight”  The NSX has a hybrid system that includes a 573 – horsepower twin-turbo 3.6L V6 engine and three electric motors, the rear wheel has a 47 horsepower electric motor with each of the front wheels respectively equipped with a flat 36 horsepower motor.

The NSX can also accelerate from 0-100km / h in less than 3 seconds and has a top speed of up to 307km / h.  (190 mph).  It will be delivered to consumers around 2017 with the first NSX being auctioned off for charity in January of next year (2016).

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