Autonomous Cars with Marc Hoag is the world's only weekly podcast dedicated entirely to driverless cars, and the #1 result on Google! We discuss the products, tech, law, policy, and societal impacts of self driving cars, what I call the greatest step change in humanity since the Industrial Revolution!
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#190: Cruise in Dubai; Tesla's vision-only FSD v9.0; Mercedes EQS
1. Cruise in Dubai: Cruise becomes the exclusive partner to launch a robotaxi service in Dubai from 2023 to 2030, with the aim of getting 4000 Cruise Origins on Dubai's roads.
2. Tesla's vision-only FSD v9.0: Elon announces that a soon-to-be-released version of Full Self Driving beta, v9.0, will be "vision-only," meaning no radar, and of course, still no lidar, i.e., it will be camera-based only.
3. Mercedes EQS: The new electric S-Klasse, the EQS, is a technological and aesthetic marvel, but it falls short on offering any truly revolutionary semi-autonomous driving technology.
#189-Xpeng; Insurance; The Safety Pool
1. The conclusion for Xpeng's cross-China AV trek
2. The auto insurance industry in an autonomous future
3. A huge AV simulation testing service
#188-Xpeng, BMW, Cruise & Voyage
1. Xpeng starts a six day autonomous trek across China
2. BMW's larger, curvier iDrive suggests revolutionary AV capabilities
3. Cruise does indeed acquire Voyage, but I'm not entirely pleased with the implications
All this... right now.
#187-Allen Witters, CEO, T4L
***This episode brought to you in party by The Information. Get 75% off your first month at TheInformation.com/Hoag***
My guest today is Allen Witters, the CEO of T4L -- that's Transportation for Life -- a brand-agnostic electric vehicle subscription service that already has over $3M in pre-orders, and is already eyeing an IPO; they've also got a WeFunder page.
If that sounds a bit much, a bit too sudden, a bit too everything to be true, that's because the T4L team are determined to do their part to expedite the world to an electric vehicle future by removing every obstacle, road block, and hindrance to EV ownership along the way.
First off, T4L is not a car sharing platform; it's a car subscription platform. Second, in case this brings back memories of GM's failed Maven service, say, or Mercedes' recently pulled plug on their subscription service, too, remember that both Volvo and Porsche are still pushing strongly with their respective subscription services. Third, this is an altogether different sort of subscription model more akin to a cell phone purchase.
While there are several subscription tiers available (including a "for life" plan), it's the decidedly cell phone-type plan that I think is most intriguing, wherein you pay for a fixed number of miles and time, and you either use it all or you don't.
What's more interesting is the interplay with third party subscriptions: residential condominiums, or corporate clients, for example, can subscribe to T4L's services and then provide the vehicles to their tenants or employees. To use a somewhat less extravagant analogy, think of hotels that provide bicycles for their guests.
What's most astonishing, though, is that T4L even provides life time electric vehicle charging and will even install the appropriate chargers onsite if needed. And if that's not enough, they're even developing so-called EV experience centers for people to hang out, browse various EVs, and even get a coffee.
There's a lot to unpack here, so fortunately I got about 40 minutes with Allen discussing all the ins and outs of of T4L and their mission, so I hope you're sitting comfortably, because Episode 187 with Allen Witters, CEO of T4L, begins now.
#186-Noel Marshall, Senior Account Executive, Schaeffler
My guest today is Noel Marshall of the drive-by-wire team over at Schaeffler's US offices. We discuss everything from their Indy Autonomous Challenge; the SAM Car Project; the USDOT inclusive design challenge; and tackle some of the much broader issues surrounding autonomous vehicles, society, and much more besides.
#185-More on AVs being EVs; teleops shouldn't be AV; Argo.ai's Munich Airport test track
1. I explain further why AVs need to be EVs, and talk about Cruise's huge new charging station in SF
2. I explain why teleoperations should be considered as an alternative to AVs
3. Argo.ai has partnered up with LabCampus at Munich Airport to develop an AV test track
The Best Autonomous Podcast
Marc offers one of the most comprehensive and deep dive looks into the future of autonomous cars through his podcast. His covers a diverse range of topics, brings on a diverse range of guests, and offers his perspective on what the future of an autonomous car world looks like and how it impacts all angles of society.
This podcast is my go-to for the latest information, philosophies (from mathematical to economic), predictions, opinions and facts about autonomous cars. Marc is so knowledgable, polite, respectful.. and asks his guests the most insightful questions. This is my favorite podcast: hands down.
The series of podcasts would make excellent book for training engineers for a career in autonomous vehicle field. Les Teague