The wild success Tesla experienced with the Model S clearly demonstrated that not only is there a viable market for EVs but that electric cars may very well be where the entire auto industry is headed. In a similar vein, the work that Tesla is carrying out with its Autopilot software is influencing other established players within the auto industry to devote an ever-increasing proportion of R&D dollars towards self-driving car technologies.
A recently filed patent from Ford shows that Tesla isn’t the only forward-thinking car company on the planet. While the concept car detailed in Ford’s patent may never see the light of day, it’s just crazy and cool enough to warrant covering.
The patent in question describes a futuristic car with a detachable rear wheel that can quickly transform into a electric unicycle. In other words, the patent essentially describes the ultimate in quick getaways for both villains and heroes alike. In fact, the entire contraption may remind some of this famous scene from the Batman film The Dark Knight.
The next big thing in automotive will be self-driving cars – make that eco-friendly self-driving cars – and several companies are working on such consumer products. But it’s not traditional carmakers that are at the forefront of this next innovation. Instead, tech firms that have no experience building a car, including Google and Apple, are expected to reshape the car industry. At the same time, the well-established automakers aren’t sitting idly by, with various brands already announcing plans to come out with self-driving and/or electric vehicles. And, naturally, there’s Tesla, a newcomer in the car business that’s already annoying competitors with its inventions, including self-driving features for its all-electric models.
Apple is already rumored to partner up with a yet-to-be-disclosed car maker for its first car, and Google might be doing the same thing. The difference is that Google already has a self-driving car prototype in testing, and has been testing the technology for quite a while and that there’s already a big name interested in Google’s car business: Ford. More →
The annual Detroit Auto Show is always a fantastic showcase for futuristic new cars. Some of them are concepts that will never see the light of day, and others are fairly good representations of cars that will eventually be released to the public. This year, there are two clear stars of the show. The first is Ford’s stunning GT revival, and the second is the brand new Acura NSX, which auto enthusiasts have been waiting years to see reimagined.
But there was plenty more to see at this year’s show. More →
New York’s Auto Show is always packed with debuts, and this year wasn’t any different. From the 2013 BMW X1 and Mercedes-Benz’s 2013 CL-Class and GL-Class, to the 2013 Ford Explorer Sport, 2013 SRT Viper and many more, I took a spin through the show to check out some of the newest cars that will soon hit the market — and of course, look at a bunch of my favorite rides as well. The show-stopper for me? The matte blue Audi R8 GT, though I loved the Ford Explorer Sport, too. Catch all the McLarens, Aston Martins, Rolls Royces, BMWs, Bentleys, Mercedes-Benzes and more in our 2012 New York Auto Show photo gallery, which is linked below.
As of yesterday, no American car company had gone public since Henry Ford put his family business on the on the U.S. stock exchange back in 1956. Today, Tesla Motors (TSLA) — in an IPO — sold over 13.3 million shares of stock on the NASDAQ exchange totaling $226.1 million. The all-electric car maker’s mission is simply to “sell high performance, super efficient electric cars.” Tesla uses some pretty impressive technology to manage, store and harness the electric charge stored in the cars batteries. The company should have their first mass production model — The Model S — rolling off the assembly line this year. The company’s stock closed just south of $24. More →
In a move to counteract its steadily declining subscriber base and sinking financial situation, Sprint is seemingly looking to open up its network to more non-traditional mobile devices. Sprint is already host to the Amazon Kindle Whispernet service, which provides wireless delivery of eBooks to the popular eReader and serves to distinguish the Kindle from its competition. The carrier also has an agreement with Ford that will outfit select 2009 truck models with cellular data connectivity. In an attempt to expand beyond the Whispernet and Ford offerings, Sprint is reportedly in talks with companies like Garmin, Eastman Kodak and SanDisk about adding EV-DO and presumably WiMax capability to what are traditionally non-wireless devices. If consumers are not interested in Sprint’s network, it only makes sense that Sprint would try to woo consumer electronics powerhouses into using its wireless network. How many people would jump all over a point and shoot camera or an HD pocket camcorder like the Zi6 that could wirelessly upload photos or videos instantaneously? In this age of instant communication and voyeurism, we would guess a lot! In any event, we like this play by Sprint a lot — big commercial contracts mean big revenue that won’t be jumping ship in droves every time an admin fee changes and the ETF is waived…