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Good morning, good afternoon and good evening wherever you are in the world, welcome to EV News Daily for Sunday 26th December. It’s Martyn Lee here and I go through every EV story so you don’t have to.
Thank you to MYEV.com for helping make this show, they’ve built the first marketplace specifically for Electric Vehicles. It’s a totally free marketplace that simplifies the buying and selling process, and help you learn about EVs along the way too.
TESLA STOPS DRIVERS PLAYING VIDEO GAMES WHILE DRIVING
– Under pressure from US auto safety regulators, Tesla has agreed to stop allowing video games to be played on center touch screens while its vehicles are moving.
– The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration says the company will send out a software update over the internet so the function called “Passenger Play” will be locked and won’t work while vehicles are in motion.
– The move comes one day after the agency announced it would open a formal investigation into distracted driving concerns about Tesla’s video games, some of which could be played while cars are being driven.
TESLA PULLS GAMES ON MOVING CAR SCREENS AFTER U.S. SAFETY PROBE
– “The NHTSA constantly assesses how manufacturers identify and safeguard against distraction hazards that may arise due to faults, misuse, or intended use of convenience technologies, including infotainment screens,” the agency said.
– A driver’s distraction – likely from a phone game application – was one of the causes of a fatal crash of a Tesla car operating in Autopilot in California in 2018, according to a report by the National Transportation Safety Board.
TESLA TO HALT GAMES ON INFOTAINMENT SCREENS IN MOVING CARS
– The agency says its investigation of Tesla’s feature will continue even with the update. It was not clear whether NHTSA would require Tesla to do a formal recall with the update. In the past the agency has asked Tesla why it should not be required to do recalls with safety-related software updates.
– NHTSA already is investigating why Tesla’s “Autopilot” partially automated driving system keeps crashing into stopped emergency vehicles. It’s also looking into the performance of Tesla’s “Full Self-Driving” software after getting a complaint that it nearly caused a crash.
TESLA DISABLES GAMING WHILE DRIVING FEATURE
– When it opened its inquiry, the NHTSA noted that the feature “may distract the driver and increase the risk of a crash”.Its guidelines state that in-car devices have to be disengaged so that they cannot be used by the driver “to perform inherently distracting secondary tasks while driving”.This month, it reported that 3,142 road deaths in 2019 were attributed to distracted drivers.
Original Source : https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-59781310
TESLA FEATURE LETS YOU TURN YOUR CAR INTO A LIGHT SHOW MACHINE
– Here comes Tesla with the gift you never knew you wanted (or don’t really want but hey, you know what they say about looking a gift horse in the mouth). Last Christmas, it gave its cars the ability to fart and bleat like goats. Apparently feeling more generous this year, Tesla decided that everyone needed a feature to turn their cars into light show machines.
– As part of its latest holiday update released on Christmas Eve, Tesla debuted “Tesla Light Show,” which allows users to create their own light shows to any music of their choice. To create a light show, which can last up to five minutes, users must download xLights, a free open-source software. After finishing their light show in xLights, users can put it on a USB and upload it to their car.
– Light Show works with 2021 Tesla Model S and Model X cars as well as any Model 3 or Model Y. However, you don’t have to own a Tesla car to use the light show feature or xLights, the company explained, although it didn’t specify what other vehicles would be able to take advantage of the feature.
TESLA’S HOLIDAY UPDATE INCLUDES DESIGN-YOUR-OWN LIGHT SHOW OPEN TO ALL
– (Note: It’s worth pointing out that the idea of an automaker actively encouraging users to upload a personalized version of any software to their vehicles is unusual. Even within XLights’ presumably limited parameters, most car companies’ cybersecurity teams would frown upon the idea of opening up any part of their vehicle’s electronic architecture to outside programming. It’s tempting to view this as a sign of Tesla’s confidence in the hack-resistance of its software, but even if you don’t, it’s further proof that Tesla marches to the beat of its own drummer.
TESLA LETS DRIVERS TURN THEIR CARS INTO MEGAPHONES WITH NEW SOFTWARE UPDATE
– Tesla has released a new software update that lets drivers use their Tesla vehicles as actual megaphones to communicate with their surroundings – don’t be shocked if people start talking to you through their Tesla on the road.
– Now with this year’s update, the automaker is updating the ‘Boombox’ feature to add a ‘megaphone’ option that lets drivers literally use the feature as if it’s a megaphone.
– The feature builds on Tesla also releasing remote live view via Sentry Mode that lets you broadcast your voice to the car using the Tesla mobile app.
– In all seriousness, it’s pretty amazing how Tesla managed to take a mandated feature that was forced on them by regulators and something that many Tesla owners were upset about, and then turned it into a feature that people are actually excited to try.
Original Source : https://electrek.co/2021/12/24/tesla-megaphones-feature-software-update
TESLA’S GRANT APPLICATION MIGHT SPARK NON-TESLA SUPERCHARGER PILOT IN TEXAS
– Tesla is applying for grants in the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ)’s Texas Volkswagen Environmental Mitigation Program (TxVEMP) to build charging stations in the state.
– According to the TxVEMP page, related to DC fast charging infrastructure, Tesla has applied for support in four separate projects – most likely for new Supercharging stations (see the list here).
– An interesting thing, noted in a Reddit topic posted by u/mockingbird, is that the program requires the installation of chargers with a minimum of 150 kW power and certain connectors: either CHAdeMO and CCS1, or if there is an alternative connector (like the Tesla proprietary plug), there must be a CHAdeMO and/or CCS1 plug for each alternative connector.
– It means that to get money, Tesla has to basically install an equal number of its proprietary plugs and CCS1 plugs
TESLA GIGA SHANGHAI REMAINS AN EXPORT HUB, STRIKING $422M DEAL WITH HY
– Giga Shanghai remains Tesla’s export hub in 2022 as the company struck a $422 million deal with South Korean logistics company Hyundai Glovis to supply its vehicles worldwide. Since Giga Berlin and Giga Texas will initially produce a limited number of vehicles, the manufacturer’s Chinese factory will support the distribution of vehicles around the world.
– At the moment, Giga Shanghai manufactures Model 3 and Model Y cars, the most popular Tesla models, and ships them not only to China and neighboring countries, but also to Europe. The manufacturer’s factory in China continues to expand as global demand for Tesla vehicles remains strong and delivery times for some variants of models sometimes increase to several months.
BMW IX AND I4 GET OFFICIAL EPA RATINGS
– BMW has confirmed EPA range ratings for the i4 sedan and iX crossover SUV, mostly hitting the automaker’s targets.
In xDrive50 dual-motor all-wheel drive launch guise, the iX achieves an EPA range of 324 miles with 20-inch wheels, 315 miles with 22-inch wheels, and 305 miles with 21-inch wheels, BMW confirmed in an updated press kit for the the vehicle.
– Range ratings also represent good efficiency for other i4 configurations representing a battery pack with 83.9 kwh gross and 81.5 kwh usable capacity. BMW has hinted that the i4 aims to outdo the Tesla Model 3 in handling performance, which may have been more of a priority than maximum efficiency.
– The single-motor rear-wheel drive BMW i4 eDrive40 is rated at 301 miles of range with 18-inch wheels and 282 miles with 19-inch wheels. The dual-motor i4 M50 is rated at 270 miles with 19-inch wheels and 227 miles with 22-inch wheels.
– the iX has 111.5 kwh of gross and 106.3 kwh of usable battery capacity.
VOLKSWAGEN TEASES ID. BUZZ AND SAYS THAT IT’S REALLY CLOSE TO PUBLIC ROADS
– In the clip, we see the all-electric ID. Buzz in all its glory as it lights up the room. The text says that 2022 will be the “year of the ID. Buzz,” and the video says “The DNA of an icon.” That’s high praise and will require the Buzz to be sincerely good if it’s going to live up to it.
– In the clip, we see some of the promised features. They include puddle lights that create a futuristic hexagonal shape on the ground, U-shaped turn-signals that look kinda like the Mercedes EQS, and illuminated door handles.
– It seems like Volkswagen might be much closer to showing off the production model “soon,” as the clip says about 100 times.
BUICK TRADEMARKS THE ELECTRA NAME, DOES IT HINT AT UPCOMING ELECTRIC CROSSOVER?
– Buick’s range in North America comprises exclusively of SUVs including the Envision, Encore and Enclave, but none of them is fully electric. This could change in the near future as the automaker filed a trademark for the Electra name in Canada, a move that could hint at a production version of last years’ fully electric crossover concept bearing the iconic name.
– General Motor’s trademark filing from December 20 for the Buick Electra name was posted at the Rivian Owners Forum. Of course, this doesn’t necessarily mean that Buick will use the Electra name on a production vehicle, nor that this will be a fully electric crossover, however both of those assumptions sound plausible given the timing.
FORD SELLS DIRECT-TO-CONSUMER IN CHINA, DELIVERS FIRST MUSTANG MACH-E
– Ford Motor Co. began delivering on Sunday in China its first Mustang Mach-E SUVs built in the country and sold at direct-to-customer Ford stores for all-electric vehicle buyers, the company announced.
– The company is hosting a series of ceremonies throughout China, starting in Shanghai and Beijing, that highlight the deliveries because the size of public events is limited by pandemic-related restrictions
– Ford released a photo early Sunday of one of its first buyers in China, advertising executive Jin Zhang, receiving keys in Shanghai
– In China, Ford has set up 25 storefront sites in major metropolitan areas for customers to buy electric vehicles directly rather than go through a traditional dealership — and more sites are planned. This storefront model, in which no test-driving takes place on-site, has been popular in the U.S. with Tesla.
– The Ford direct-to-customer stores are not standalone sites but, rather, located in high-traffic shopping centers that offer other global brands
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