Summary: A podcast conversation about cars and the future of transportation
Wheel Bearings 34 This week Dan takes his turn in the Mazda Miata RF while Sam does a road trip to the Center for Automotive Research Management Briefing Seminars in the Mercedes-AMG E43. While at MBS Sam talked with Nvidia’s director of automotive, Danny Shapiro, heard Mazda SVP Robert Davis extol the virtues of internal combustion and saw his friend Bob Gritzenger struggle with EV charging infrastructure in northern Michigan. Links Mazda Miata RF Charging an EV on Blue Highways Mazda Dissing EVs Sam’s new monthly column for Automotive Engineering
Wheel Bearings 33 This week Sam is in the slightly quicker Civic, the Si sedan, Dan stays on-road in the off-road Jeep Compass and the guys delve into fixing diesel Volkswagens, regulations for automated driving and whether anyone will ever make any money on self-driving software. Also, Waze comes to Android Auto, the end of big cars and a contemplation on how to fix Lincoln. Links The automated driving economy turns into the app store economy Who’s ultimately responsible for fixing recalled Volkswagen diesels Will automated cars cost $400,000? Spoiler alert, no.
Wheel Bearings 32 This week Sam has driven Hyundai Ioniq Hybrid and compares the latest Mazda Miata to the original. Dan spends the week with a very different kind of convertible, the Mustang GT. When the new Nissan Leaf arrives this fall, it will have e-pedal for strong regenerative braking and ProPilot Assist which is automated but not self-driving. Before some listener questions, the guys dive into the latest ploy by Comcast to remain the most hated company in America. Links Nissan ProPilot Assist Preview – It’s Automated But Not Self-Driving We Should Welcome The E-Pedal In The New Nissan Leaf, But It’s Not The World’s First: Updated Comcast Tries to Leverage Autonomous Cars to Kill Net Neutrality
Wheel Bearings 30 This week Sam and Dan discuss the merits of the Subaru Impreza vs the Mistubishi Outlander Sport, the Merccedes-AMG GLA45, the all-new 2018 Honda Accord, the Aston Martin Valkyrie and a preview of the 2017 Concours de’Elegance of America. Don’t forget to join the Hespen Rally if you are in Michigan on August 6, 2017. Links Concours de’Elegance of America 2018 Honda Accord and more on the Accord Aston Martin Valkyrie Hespen Rally
Wheel Bearings 30 As we head into the second half of 2017, Dan and Sam have a bunch of stuff to discuss including spending time with the Chevrolet Bolt and the air conditioning capacity of the Mazda CX-9. In the news topics, Tesla responds badly to IIHS crash test results, Volvo adds electrons to its full lineup and sales of the Kia Niro and Hyundai Ioniq reflect the changing character of the automotive market as a whole. http://hespenrally.com/ Finally, if you are in the Detroit area on August 6, 2017, please come join the Hespen Rally to honor the memory of Patrick Hespen and help raise funds for research into a cure for cholangiocarcinoma , the rare cancer that took Patrick’s life way too soon. There were will be lots of cool cars and Patrick’s friends, family and colleagues. Register at http://hespenrally.com/ Links Tesla Takes on the IIHS Volvo Electrifies and the media misreports it Kia Niro outsells Hyundai Ioniq
Wheel Bearings 29 This week Sam drives a couple of big American sedans, the Buick LaCrosse and Lincoln Continental and Dan samples the Mazda CX-9. This devolves into a chat about Chris Lattner and working with/for Elon Musk and using rental car companies to service fleets of autonomous vehicles. Then Sam goes all analog with a visit to the Great Race stop in Ypsilanti, Mich. Links The Great Race The Great Race comes to Ypsilanti Chris Lattner bails on Tesla’s AutoPilot program after less than 6 months of working for Elon Musk Avis to Service Waymo’s Autonomous Vehicle Fleet
Wheel Bearings #28 This week Dan and Sam return to the Ford F-250 Super Duty which Dan is now driving and compare it to the Chevy Silverado 2500. They also talk about BMW’s $100,000 economy car, the 740e plug-in hybrid. Topics include the departure of Travis Kalanick from Uber, the 2017 edition of J.D. Power’s Initial Quality Study and a bunch of listener questions including a recommendation of the Mazda6 and contemplation of which is worse, the malaise era or the coming autonomy era? Links 2017 J.D. Power Initial Quality Study Results
This week we talk about a diesel powered Jaguar XF, a BMW 5 Series that so good it’s boring, the big shuffle at Uber, whether car makers will be the tier 1 suppliers to the tech industry for automated driving and answer a whole bunch of listener questions including some background on Sam’s engineering career. Carmakers Could Be Tier 1 Suppliers To Tech Companies For Autonomous Buick HiPer Strut Suspension Changes at Uber Do Driver’s Cars Matter Anymore? Increasing Collaboration Between Auto and Tech is Better For Everyone
Wheel Bearings #26 This week, Dan and Sam talk about driving the BMW 530i, Jeep Grand Cherokee Summit, Ford Escape Platinum and Acura NSX. Then they dive into how a printer patent case might impact the future of automated driving, the Acura NSX racing program and insuring Teslas. Guest: Art St. Cyr, President Honda Performance Development Links: SCOTUS ruling limits patent exhaustion Lawyers not ethicists will solve trolley problem Acura NSX launch control Tesla Insurance Premiums
Wheel Bearings #25 This week Dan and Sam discuss lots of listener comments and questions throughout the show. Dan has spent the week with the Toyota Tundra and advises a listener to look elsewhere for their hauling needs. Sam has the new Chevrolet Equinox and also discusses his new acquisition, a 1990 Mazda Miata. In the ongoing Uber saga, former Google engineer Anthony Levandoski is now also a former Uber engineer as the ride-hailing leader fires him. The guys discuss invisible Camrys, electric vehicle conversions, autonomous shuttles and whether it is worth buying a cheap used Fiat 500e. links Uber Fires Anthony Levandoski Toyota Tundra review Autonomous Shuttles
Wheel Bearings #24 This week Dan and Sam discuss driving the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio, hauling decking materials with the new aluminum bodied Ford F250 Super Duty and hauling ass in the Shelby GT350. In the news since the last episode, Lyft will be testing Waymo’s minivans in addition to Chevy Bolts, Theresa May wants to ban internal combustion engines by 2050 and the first two salaried job losses are announced at Ford as Mark Fields and Ray Day head for the door. Last week Sam was speaking at the Connected and Autonomous Vehicles conference in Santa Clara, Calif. and the chance to talk with Tom Wang, chief product officer of Turo and Peter Rawlinson, CTO of Lucid. Links British Conservatives Propose Banning ICEs by 2050 Ford CEO and Comms VP Lose Their Jobs Ford’s Big Management Shuffle Is About Changing Perceptions Lyft and Waymo Hook Up. 2017 Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio
Wheel Bearings Ep #23 On this week’s edition, Dan and Sam discuss whether Fiat might have a better Miata than Mazda with the 124 Spider and whether midsized pickups like the GMC Canyon Denali might be too compromised to be truly useful. Volkswagen has some interesting new ads aimed at attracting buyers to the new Atlas SUV and the brand in general as it tries to recover from the diesel emissions scandal. Sam expounds on why stand-alone ride-hailing services are probably doomed and then the team ponders why Delphi is splitting itself up to leave powertrain systems behind. Dan interviews one of the masterminds behind GM’s latest 6.6-liter Duramax V8 and we address a listener question about diesel particulate filters.
Wheel Bearings 22 The latest rumor about Fiat Chrysler is that Jeep and Ram will be spun off as their own brand, whatever that means. We discuss how that might work and what it may mean for the rest of Chrysler. Apple is still in the autonomous vehicle game, too, and we discuss how the company has shifted its focus. Finally, we talk about how law enforcement is trying to figure out how to deal with autonomous cars in emergencies. Links http://jalopnik.com/watch-this-video-of-a-self-driving-chevy-bolts-close-en-1794528082 http://www.freep.com/story/money/cars/chrysler/2017/04/26/fiat-chrysler-spinoff-jeep-ram/100932960/ https://www.forbes.com/sites/samabuelsamid/2017/04/15/armed-with-a-drivers-license-apple-may-now-be-focused-on-the-brains-of-self-driving-cars/#595e8a61613a http://blog.caranddriver.com/on-the-path-to-autonomous-vehicles-police-officers-get-left-behind/
Wheel Bearings 21 We wrap up highlights from the 2017 New York Auto Show including an all-new Lincoln Navigator, Buick Enclave, SuperCruising Cadillacs and aero-vectoring Lamborghini Huracans. We also discuss a Tesla AutoPilot lawsuit and modern turbocharged engines. In the time gap since we last recorded, Dan has driven the Genesis G90 and Lexus RX450h while Sam has been through the aging Infiniti QX50 and the stunning new Infiniti Q60. Sam also spent a weekend with Chevrolet’s second-generation Cruze diesel to see if it could be a viable alternative for the all the Volkswagen TDI refugees. Links 2018 Buick Enclave Avenir reveal Lamborghini Huracan Performante Active Aerodynamics Cadillac SuperCruise Tesla AutoPilot 2.0 Class-Action 2017 Chevrolet Cruze Diesel Review
Wheel Bearings Episode 20 In episode 20, Dan ponders what to tow with the massive 910 lb-ft of torque available from the redesigned 6.6-liter Duramax diesel in the 2017 Chevrolet Silverado HD 2500 while Sam swaps the BMW 530i for a 330i. Buick has shifted gears with the new 2018 Regal, ditching the trunk in favor of a five-door hatchback or wagon/crossover and Hyundai Motor Group has launched two distinctly different vehicles off its first dedicated electrified vehicle platform. Sam got to drive the electric and hybrid variants of the Hyundai Ioniq while Dan got to at least see the Kia Niro. Links 2018 Buick Regal Sportback and TourX Fill White Spaces in GM’s Lineup Kia Reveals Its First Dedicated Hybrid, The Niro Crossover Plus New Optima Hybrids 2017 Hyundai Ioniq, Company’s First Dedicated Electrified Vehicle Platform Arrives In December