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Tag Archives: automotive

Elon Musk: Teslaquila tequila is ‘coming soon’

Tesla CEO Elon Musk confirmed Friday in a tweet that the Tesla-branded tequila called “Teslaquilla”—the bottle of liquor that co-starred in his April Fool’s Day joke about the automaker filing for bankruptcy — is “coming soon.” Musk’s tweet was a response to a CNBC article that reported Tesla had filed an application with the  U.S. Patent and Trademark Office  to trademark “Teslaquila.” Musk later tweeted a photo of a Teslaquila label. Visual approximation pic.twitter.com/sMn3Pv476Y — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 12, 2018 The Teslaquila story began on April Fool’s Day after Musk posted a photo of himself passed out against a Tesla Model 3 “surrounded by “Teslaquilla” bottles, the tracks of dried tears still visible on his cheeks.” In the photo, Musk is holding a cardboard sign that reads “bankwupt.” Elon was found passed out against a Tesla Model 3, surrounded by "Teslaquilla" bottles, the tracks of dried tears still visible on his cheeks. This is not a forward-looking statement, because, obviously, what's the point? Happy New Month! pic.twitter.com/YcouvFz6Y1 — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) April 1, 2018 It’s important to note that the filing Monday is an “intent to use” trademark, which, just like it sounds, means Tesla has a “bona fide intention, and is entitled, to use the mark in commerce on or in connection with the identified goods/services.”

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Tesla vehicles ordered after October 15 lose out on full tax credit eligibility

Tesla customers who want the full $7,500 federal tax credit have until October 15 to order a Model S, Model X or Model 3 electric vehicle, a new deadline posted on the company’s website that could spark a flurry of sales. The October 15 deadline was added Thursday to the Tesla website . Earlier this year, Tesla hit a bittersweet milestone when it delivered its 200,000th electric vehicle. The achievement — a noteworthy occasion for an automaker that didn’t exist 15 years ago — activated a countdown for the $7,500 federal tax credit offered to consumers who buy new electric vehicles. The tax credit begins to phase out once a manufacturer has sold 200,000 qualifying vehicles in the U.S. Under these rules, Tesla customers have to take delivery of their new Model S, Model X or Model 3 by December 31. Tesla explained how the tax credit would phase out and the Dec. 31 delivery deadline two months ago. Until Thursday, it wasn’t clear if or when Tesla would impose a deadline for customers to order their electric vehicle. Tesla estimates that customers who order a Model X and Model S right now would take delivery of their vehicles in November. The Model 3, depending on the variant a customer chooses, could take up to eight weeks, according to the company’s website. The newly imposed deadline may spur sales, giving Tesla an added boost to close out 2018. However, these delivery-sensitive sales come with added responsibility — and the potential of angering new customers if Tesla fails to meet that deadline.  

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2018 iPad Pro Details Leaked – The Inquisitr

The Inquisitr 2018 iPad Pro Details Leaked The Inquisitr Another major Apple product that's anticipated in the coming weeks has been revealed, thanks to the efforts of 9TO5Mac. The site uncovered accurate images, specs, and more for the iPhone XS Max, iPhone XS, iPhone XR, and Apple Watch Series 4. Today ... Exclusive: iPad Pro Face ID details, 4K HDR video over USB-C, AirPods-like Apple Pencil 2 pairing, more 9to5Mac Exclusive: iPad Pro Face ID details, 4K HDR video over USB-C, AirPod-like Apple Pencil 2 pairing, more [Update ... 9to5Mac New iPad 2018 Model Numbers Surface on MIIT Certification, Could Be iPad Pro 2018 MySmartPrice Gear all 47 news articles »

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Chinese electric vehicle maker Nio makes bumpy start following $1B IPO

Nio, the Tesla -wannabe electric vehicle firm from China, enjoyed a mix start to life as a public company after it raised $1 billion through a listing on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday. The firm went public at $6.26 — just one cent above the bottom of its pricing range — meaning that it raised a little over $1 billion. That’s some way down on its original goal of $1.8 billion, per an initial filing in August , and for a while it looked like even that price was optimistic. Early trading saw Nio’s stock fall as low as $5.84 before a wave of optimism took it to $6.81. The stock closed its first day at $6.60, up 12 percent overall, to give Nio a total market cap of $7.1 billion. Nio sells in China only, although its tech and design teams are based in the U.S, UK and Germany. Its main model, the ES8, is designed for the masses and is priced at 448,000 RMB, or around $65,000. That makes it cheaper than Tesla vehicles in China but it has only just got to making money. Nio has accrued some 17,000 orders for the vehicle, but it only began shipping in June. As a result, it has posted some pretty heavy losses in recent times — including minus $759 million in 2017. Ultimately, the firm raised $1 billion but its leadership may be disappointed that the final sum is well short of its original target. Reasons behind lukewarm investor interest may include: General concerns around the performance of Chinese firms, bellwether Tencent just had a rare profit drop , for example A crackdown on 30 other EV firms from the Chinese government, which followed a number of incidents including the reported explosion of a vehicle from WM Motor A knock-on effect from poor results from Tesla, which remains Nio’s main rival and carded wider-than-expected losses last month While there is also the ongoing spectacle that is the Trump administration’s ongoing trade war with China, which resulted in a range of new tariffs being issued last week Meanwhile, Nio is far from the newest kid on the block.

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At its core Bitmain is a chip company developing chips optimized for cryptocurrency mining, and it has failed to successfully deploy a next gen chip…

Samson Mow / THE LION'S DEN : At its core Bitmain is a chip company developing chips optimized for cryptocurrency mining, and it has failed to successfully deploy a next gen chip since 2016   —  This is the third time that this article has been published.  2048 Capital is an offshore cryptocurrency investment fund.

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Southeast Asia’s Grab plans electric vehicle push

Grab, the ride-hailing company that consumed Uber’s business in Southeast Asia, today made a big push to grow the number of electric vehicles in its fleet after  it partnered with energy supplier Singapore Power . The deal will see Grab add 200 new ‘fast-charging’ EVs to its fleet in Singapore with SP providing “preferential” pricing at the organization’s charging stations. Grab said drivers who opt for an EV — which will be “progressively rolled out” from early 2019 — can expect to increase their earnings by as much as 25 percent over drivers using petrol engines thanks to SP’s ‘mates’ rate.’ The partnership with SP is important to Grab because infrastructure such as charging stations and cost savings are crucial to persuading the most active car drivers to make a move to electric. Ride-sharing drivers certainly rank in the group that can make a difference. SP has committed to operating 500 charging stations by 2020, which would become Singapore’s largest of its kind. An initial 30 are expected to be up and running before the end of this year and, when ready, Grab said they will charge its upcoming EV model in just 40 mins. Each charge would allow 400km of driving, the company added. Grab said it has a number EVs within in its Singapore fleet today — it declined to disclose numbers but claimed it is “the largest electric and hybrid vehicle fleet in Southeast Asia” — but these charging stations and the potential to earn additional income are sure to help boost that number, whatever it may be. This initiative applies to Singapore, but a Grab spokesperson told TechCrunch that the company intends to expand its EV fleet regionally in due time. The company didn’t provide any specifics on that plan, however. Grab operates in seven countries in Southeast Asia, but Singapore is the most advanced in terms of EV infrastructure. The company recently raised $2 billion from Toyota and others .  It acquired Uber’s regional business in March  and today it claims over 100 million downloads with more than two billion rides completed to date. Grab recently claimed its annual revenue run rate has surpassed $1 billion, but it has not provided profit or loss numbers. Outside of electric, Grab has previously forayed into self-driving vehicles through a partnership with Nutonomy

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Hyundai leads $14.3M investment in Indian car rental startup Revv

Korean automaker Hyundai is jumping into India’s on-demand mobility space after it led a $14.3 million investment in car-rental startup Revv . Hyundai, which is the second largest seller of cars in India , initially announced an undisclosed investment in Revv this week, but now the startup has confirmed that the capital is part of a larger 100 Crore INR (~$14.3 million) Series B round. Other investors in the round include Japan’s Dream Incubator, Telama Investment and Sunjay Kapoor of auto component firm Sona BLW. Existing investors Edelweiss and Beenext also took part in the deal, which takes Revv to $23 million raised from investors, according to data from Crunchbase . Revv was founded in 2015 and it offers on-demand car rentals using a model similar to Zipcar in the U.S. The startup is currently active in 11 cities in India with a fleet of around 1,000 vehicles. It claims to have served 300,000 users to date. One of its hallmarks is doorstep delivery and collection from customers, which eschews the usual process of designated collection and return locations. In an interview with TechCrunch, Revv co-founders Anupam Agarwal (CEO) and Karan Jain (COO) said the plan is to expand to 30 cities over the next 12-18 months while growing the fleet size to 10,000-12,000. The duo said that the investment from Hyundai didn’t include any specific clause to provide vehicles, but that it is possible that an agreement may be reached in the future. Beyond potential support on growing the fleet, Agarwal and Jain said that Revv plans to tap Hyundai for its knowledge in vehicles, including performance upkeep, maintenance of cars and more, and other tech areas as it builds out its platform and new products. A photo of the Revv team That’s because the startup’s expansion plan goes beyond new geographies to include different types of services, too. Right now, Revv offers on-demand car rentals and a subscription-based product — Switch — that is designed for power-users, but Agarwal and Jain want to introduce more modular and flexible products. Already Shift users account for around one-third of rentals, but Revv wants to go further.

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A new unicorn is born: Root Insurance raises $100 million for a $1 billion valuation

Root Insurance, an Ohio-based car insurance startup with a tech twist, said Wednesday it has raised $100 million in a Series D funding round led by Tiger Global Management, pushing the company’s valuation to $1 billion.  Redpoint Ventures, Ribbit Capital and Scale Venture Partners all participated as follow-on investors in this latest round. The car insurance company , founded in 2015, plans to use the funds to expand into existing markets and make inroads into new states, as well as hire more employees such as engineers,  actuaries, claims and customer service to support increased scale.  Root provides car insurance to drivers. Not exactly a new concept. But it establishes the premium customers based on their driving along with other factors. Drivers download the app and take a test drive that typically lasts two or three weeks. Then Root provides a quote that rewards good driving behavior and allows customers to switch their insurance policy. Customers can purchase and manage their policy through the mobile phone Root app. Root says its approach allows good drivers to save more than 50 percent on their policies compared to  traditional insurance carriers. The company uses AI algorithms to adjust risk and sometimes provide discounts. For example, a vehicle with an advanced driver assistance system that it deems improves safety might receive further discounts. “Root Insurance is leading digital innovation in U.S.

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On Tesla’s path to privatization, Morgan Stanley halts equity coverage of electric automaker

Morgan Stanley is no longer providing equity coverage on Tesla’s stock, the second firm to drop its stock rating on the electric automaker since CEO Elon Musk announced plans via Twitter to take the company private . Tesla declined to comment. Morgan Stanley could not be reached for comment to explain why it dropped Tesla. However, some speculate that the brokerage firm could be playing some role in Tesla’s plan to become a private company. Morgan Stanley’s website no longer shows a stock rating or target price on Tesla.  Tesla stock was previously rated at “equal weight.” The move, which was reported by Bloomberg , caused Tesla shares to rise Tuesday. Shares closed at $321.90, about 3.6 percent higher than its opening price. Morgan Stanley analyst Adam Jonas, a longtime bull of Tesla, had a $291 price target on the company. In his last research note on August 7, Jonas explained Morgan Stanley placed an equal weight rating on the company because it supports a near fair value and “not a more attractive investment on a risk-adjusted basis than the average stock under our NA coverage.” Last week, Goldman Sachs Group dropped its Tesla rating and price target, although it gave an explanation for the move. The company is stepping in to advise Musk and the Tesla board on taking the company private. Musk’s tweet August 13 provided more details, including that the company is working with Silver Lake and Goldman Sachs as advisors. The company has hired Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz and Munger, Tolles & Olson as legal advisors. I’m excited to work with Silver Lake and Goldman Sachs as financial advisors, plus Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz and Munger, Tolles & Olson as legal advisors, on the proposal to take Tesla private — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 14, 2018 Musk first floated the idea of taking Tesla private at $420 a share on August 7 via a tweet that prompted the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to investigate .

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Uber finally hires a CFO as it heads for an IPO

Uber’s search for a chief financial officer—and the person who will steer the company towards an IPO—is over. The ride-hailing company said Tuesday it’s new CFO is Nelson J. Chai, the former CEO of insurance and warranty provider Warranty Group. Chai has the kind of experience Uber will need to navigate a successful IPO. Last year, Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said an IPO for Uber was part of his plans. He targeted 2019 for the IPO. The road to an IPO will require some financial belt tightening, a role Chai would handle as CFO. Uber reported August 15 a net revenue of $2.7 billion in the second quarter, a 8 percent increase compared to previous quarter and 51 percent higher than the same quarter last year. Uber recorded gross bookings, which is the total taken for all of Uber’s transportation services, of $12 billion, a 6 percent quarter-over-quarter increase and a 41 percent year-over-year increase. However, Uber also saw its losses grow to $404 million in the second quarter compared to a $304 million shortfall in first quarter.

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Behind the auto industry’s quest to replace the aging CAN standard with a new in-vehicle networking standard for transmitting data from autonomous car…

John R. Quain / New York Times : Behind the auto industry's quest to replace the aging CAN standard with a new in-vehicle networking standard for transmitting data from autonomous car sensors   —  Cars need to get faster — not on the road, but on the inside.  —  Speed has always been part of the mystique of the automotive business.

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Tesla shares tumble in early trading after another Elon Musk-powered PR blunder

Elon Musk, the embattled chief executive of electric automaker and sustainable energy company Tesla, tried to “set the record straight” about his recent behavior in an hour-long exclusive interview with The New York Times . Instead, it only served to further underscore how out-of-touch the billionaire chief executive seems from the ongoing operations at his company. The fallout has already begun, with shares falling in early trading. His erratic behavior could cost investors billions and potentially destroy a company that has, in fact, revolutionized the automotive industry in America. In the wide-ranging interview, Musk acknowledged the personal and physical toll running Tesla was taking on him and tried to explain away his recent behavior. The latest drama began with a simple midday tweet last week indicating that Musk had secured funding to take Tesla private at a price of $420 per share. Am considering taking Tesla private at $420. Funding secured. — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) August 7, 2018 The number (which is both within the range of a 20 percent premium of Tesla shares at the time, and a code with special significance for people who smoke marijuana), the timing of the announcement and the medium on which it was issued all raised eyebrows. just spent the past fifteen minutes delivering a rudimentary explanation of financial markets to someone just so i could help them appreciate my “elon musk absolutely did a weed twete today” theory — ಠ_ಠ (@MikeIsaac) August 8, 2018 From there, it has pretty much been all downhill for Musk and Tesla as the company’s executive bounced from one public relations blunder to another. There are the allegations of illegal drug use, which Musk feebly addresses in his interview, saying: “I was not on weed, to be clear,” he said. “Weed is not helpful for productivity. There’s a reason for the word ‘stoned.’ You just sit there like a stone on weed.” Reporting from the Times also contradicts another assertion that Musk made in the interview — which is that Tesla’s board is not seeking someone to take the reins as a chief operating officer at the company. Something which would indubitably help take off of Musk’s shoulders some of the pressures of running the business

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Update: New whistleblower claims against Tesla allege drug trafficking, theft and phone hacking coverup

This post has been updated with a comment from Tesla and to indicate that a single employee was allegedly involved in the drug trafficking ring.  Employees at Tesla’s Nevada gigafactory were allegedly involved in a massive drug ring, stole $37 million worth of precious metals and equipment and illegally spied on former employees at the behest of chief executive Elon Musk, according to a new whistleblower complaint filed against the company. First reported by Jalopnik , the complaint is only the latest in a string of damaging news stories that have erased millions in value for Tesla shareholders and could cast the future of the company’s celebrity chief executive, Elon Musk, into doubt. It’s also the second whistleblower claim filed against the company this summer. Ex-Tesla worker makes it official and blows the whistle to SEC This time the whistleblower is Karl Hansen, a former member of Tesla’s internal security department and investigations division. The complaint from Hansen, a former special agent, member of the US Army’s Criminal Investigation Command, and senior investigator for the Federal Maritime Commission, reads like a weird mashup of Sons of Anarchy, Silicon Valley and Scandal. Hansen claims that Tesla failed to disclose a recent internal investigation the company made into a tip it received from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency and Storey County Sheriff’s Office that one of its gigafactory employees were part of “a narcotics trafficking ring involving the sale of significant quantities of cocaine and possibly crystal methamphetamine at the Gigafactory on behalf of a Mexican drug cartel from Sonora Mexico.” According to a statement from Hansen’s legal counsel (Meissner Associates — the firm also representing Tesla’s other whistleblower, Martin Tripp), Hansen claims that he corroborated connections between the named employees and alleged members of the Mexican drug cartel, but Tesla refused to investigate the matter further and said it would hire “outside vendors” to follow up. Hansen says the company never did. For its part, the Drug Enforcement Agency issued a statement to BuzzFeed  saying that it would not inform any “non-law enforcement entities” of ongoing or pending investigations. Drug smuggling may not be the wildest allegation in Hansen’s complaint. According to the summary from Meissner, Hansen also claims that Tesla installed eavesdropping and wiretapping equipment at its facilities and was illegally listening to conversations and scanning messages from Tripp at the behest of the company’s chief executive, Elon Musk . Here’s the relevant section from the complaint: According to Mr. Hansen, following Tripp’s departure from Tesla, Tesla went so far as to install specialized router equipment within its Nevada Gigafactory designed to capture employee cell phone communications and/or retrieve employee cell phone data. The Meissner firm recently released police reports relating to this past June’s GigaGate incident indicating that Tesla security personnel may have unlawfully accessed Mr. Tripp’s cell phone long after he was fired by Tesla.

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