Each week TheDetroitBureau.com reports on the biggest news and events about new vehicles, mobility, technology, trends as well as offering our years of experience and insights in our car reviews. Then we put it all into our weekly the Headlight News podcast.
The automotive industry isn’t immune to the inflation affecting everyone, especially EV makers. Four electric vehicle companies have raised prices on their vehicles in recent months, including two in the last week. Tesla instituted an across-the-board 5% price hike while GM added more than $6,000 to the price of its GMC Hummer pickup and SUV — semiconductors and raw material costs are being blamed, reports Editor-in-Chief Paul A. Eisenstein.
Some of the other stories you need to know about include:
- The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration just released a report about vehicle crashes while using Level 2 and Level 3-5 advanced driver assistance technologies. Tesla reported the most crashes, totaling 273 of the 392 crashes in the Level 2 category. In the Level 3-5 ADAS results, Waymo, the self-driving car subsidiary of Alphabet, was involved in 62, and GM’s Cruise reported 23 crashes;
- Tesla CEO Elon Musk’s had another difficult week, facing a growing backlash from buyers, employees and investors, and it’s creating headaches for the various companies he runs, notably Tesla and SpaceX. He was sued for $258 billion by a Dogecoin investor who claims Musk was running a crypto pyramid scheme. SpaceX employees put together a letter they hoped would serve as a wakeup call to Musk. Instead, five of them were fired. Find out why it’s so ironic in the podcast;
- Honda and Sony announced they’d formed a 50/50 joint venture to produce “high-value-added” electric vehicles as well as providing mobility services. Sony Honda Mobility Inc. will begin moving products in 2025, officials said;
- Ferrari officials acknowledged the shift toward electric vehicles, and confirmed it wouldn’t have its first fully electric vehicle ready until 2026, but like its cars, the shift will be fast as it expects to be 80% electric by 2030; and,
- Cadillac revealed plans to get into the all-electric super car model with its new Celestiq model. Perhaps most noteworthy is the fact that it will be built at GM’s Tech Center, just north of Detroit with more 100 parts essentially 3D printed.
It was another awful week for Tesla CEO Elon Musk. The cascade of bad news included reports of him challenging employees via email to rally and work hard as it appears Tesla’s second quarter sales are likely to fall short of internal targets, notes Executive Editor Joseph Szczesny. It was just the beginning a tough news about the company’s safety, increased competition and a slew of lawsuits.
Executive Editor Larry Printz spent time behind the wheel of the new 2022 GMC Terrain AT4, and while he found plenty to like in terms of its exterior styling as well as its room and well appointed interior, the compact premium ute was lacking in one area: powertrain. Find out more about the crossover at TheDetroitBureau.com.
Looking ahead to this week, Managing Editor Michael Strong says it will be all about American-style fun, American made vehicles and vehicles coming to America. We dropped our review of the new 2022 Ford Bronco Raptor, a go anywhere, all-terrain machine ready to challenge the best of its class. We’ll also find out the “most American” cars on Wednesday. Tesla was last year’s most American with the Model 3, will it repeat? Also, we’ll talk with Craig Westbrook, the CSO for Vietnam-based VinFast. We’ll see what the EV maker is up to in terms of its ongoing vehicle development and plans for its North Carolina plant.
Printz returns and walks us through this week in automotive history, starting in 1903 and the incorporation of the Ford Motor Co. Turns out the third time was the charm after the two previous attempts by Henry missed the mark. The first vehicle rolls out Henry Ford’s plant a week later. In 1927, the Nürburgring opens and hosts its first race. After decades of events, the track — dubbed the “Green Hell” by legendary racer Jackie Stewart — primarily used for testing by automakers and locals and tourists alike.
Find out more the industry’s history and more by listening to TheDetroitBureau’s latest edition of the Headlight News podcast by clicking here. And look for a new episode every Monday!