|Election day gave Uber and Lyft a whole new road map|
Bloomberg, November 8th
A year ago, California looked like an existential crisis for Uber and Lyft. Now, a $200 million political campaign has turned the state into a legal fortress for the same companies, one that could help them repel threats from Washington and elsewhere. On Election Day, voters in California approved Proposition 22, a ballot measure bankrolled by Uber, Lyft, Postmates, DoorDash, and Instacart that declares their drivers to be independent contractors while affording them certain perks.
|Autonomous vehicle startup Nuro raises $500 million in new funding round|
Car Scoops, November 10th
Autonomous vehicle startup Nuro has announced it has secured a $500 million Series C funding round as the Covid-19 pandemic gives e-commerce a massive boost. Nuro, which builds the R2 self-driving delivery vehicle that only offers room for packages, said the latest round was led by T. Rowe Price Associates and includes new investors Fidelity Management & Research Company and Baillie Gifford, as well as existing investors SoftBank and Greylock.
|DOJ reportedly approves Uber’s $2.7 billion acquisition of Postmates|
The Justice Department reportedly has approved Uber’s acquisition of food-delivery app Postmates following months of scrutiny over antitrust concerns. The deal has been on hold since it was announced in July as both companies complied with the government’s request for more details to receive an approval for the $2.65 billion tie-up, but will now be able to move forward, Axios reports.
|Walmart teams with GM to test autonomous deliveries|
Yahoo Finance, November 10th
Walmart is teaming up with the General Motors’ autonomous vehicle unit to test driverless delivery in Arizona. The companies say battery powered Chevrolet Volt vehicles will begin deliveries in Scottsdale early next year. At first they’ll have human backup drivers who will monitor the cars and help to deliver packages to doors. But Ray Wert, spokesman at GM’s Cruise autonomous vehicle unit, says they’ll eventually move to fully autonomous deliveries.
|Ford adding 350 jobs at 2 plants to make electric vehicles|
Click On Detroit, November 10th
Ford plans to add 350 jobs at two factories to meet expected demand for electric vehicles that haven’t gone on sale yet. The automaker says it will add 150 workers at its Kansas City Assembly Plant in Claycomo, Missouri, to build the new E-Transit full-size van that will go on sale late next year. Another 200 workers will be hired at Ford’s Rouge Electric Vehicle Center in Dearborn, Michigan, which will build an all-electric F-150 pickup starting in mid-2022.
|Scott Painter Announces Vehicle Subscription Platform NextCar|
Auto Body News, October 29th
Automotive retail innovator Scott Painter—a founder of Fair.com, TrueCar and CarsDirect—on Oct. 29 announced a new venture, NextCar Holding Company (NXCR.) NXCR was launched in response to COVID-19 and the heightened relevance and expected demand for a Car-as-a-Service (CaaS) mobility model for consumers. “Vehicle subscription is an antidote to the affordability concerns and economic uncertainty faced by today’s car shopper.
|President-elect Biden wants zero-emission public transit for cities with 100,000+ people|
The Drive, November 9th
President-elect of the United States Joe Biden has a plan for the American transportation industry that has the attention of automakers, rail providers, and other related companies. But most importantly, the American people have their ears against the wall to see how this plan might benefit them, whether it be through cheaper cars, more sustainable transportation, or just easier day-to-day commuting.
|Ford says E-Transit vans will meet growing demand for electric vehicle services|
Green Car Reports, November 10th
Ahead of the reveal of its E-Transit electric van, Ford released results of a survey showing that many consumers want delivery services to use electric vehicles. The survey was conducted by Ford and Google in the United States, United Kingdom, and Germany. Of Americans surveyed, 54% said they would choose an electric-powered delivery service over a gas-powered one, if price and arrival times were the same.
|Micro-Mobility leader, Helbiz, launches e-bikes in Atlanta, Georgia|
Valdosta Daily Times, November 10th
Helbiz, a global leader in micro-mobility, has launched its safe and innovative e-bikes in Atlanta, Georgia, after having been awarded a one-year permit by the Atlanta Department of Transportation (ADOT). An initial fleet of innovative e-bikes will be on the ground, followed by the addition of 500 e-scooters shortly afterwards. This press release features multimedia. Micro-Mobility Leader, Helbiz, Launches E-bikes in Atlanta, Georgia.
|The EVs are coming|
Car and Driver, November 1st
The Nissan Leaf was a shoo-in for success. The Chevrolet Bolt, a can’t miss. The Audi e-tron, an EV that would show Tesla what the big boys can do. Early on, those electric models were lauded as game changers, but the game didn’t change. Electric vehicles have had a rough go of it in the U.S. The Leaf, one of the most popular non-Tesla EVs on sale today, had its best year in 2014, moving a middling 30,200 cars.
|Honda launches used vehicle leasing program in Florida, California|
Car and Driver, November 5th
Honda, in conjunction with the car-leasing platform Fair, has launched a pilot program at six Honda dealerships in southern California and 13 Honda and Acura dealerships in southern Florida to allow potential customers to lease certified pre-owned (CPO) vehicles. Through the Fair app, customers will be able to select a CPO vehicle, sign for it, and get it delivered. The leasing program allows customers to choose either a month-to-month lease term or a longer, more traditional term.
|GM to hire 3,000 in EV and autonomous car push|
Yahoo News, November 10th
During the campaign, President-elect Joe Biden insisted that addressing climate change would offer opportunities for economic growth and new jobs. And though some autoworkers are worried about future job losses on the line, as assembly of EVs is a mechanically simpler task, we are seeing some of the promised job growth in other areas. In addition to Ford’s just-announced investment and hiring plans, GM has also just announced that it will hire 3,000 new workers in its push to develop electric and autonomous vehicles.