Volvo CEO Håkan Samuelsson thinks his company is well placed to mount a charge at the changing car market Volvo has partnered with Uber to develop autonomous car Volvo CEO Håkan Samuelsson believes the growth in car sharing w...(image)
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The corporation that fabricates the automobiles sold by Audi Oakland and supplementary Audi automobile dealerships perhaps can be dated to August Horch, who was the person whose corporation shaped the initial Horch automobile in 1901 in Zwickau situated in Germany. He was the person who was responsible to fabricate the company.
Horch: the pioneer of Audi motor company:
Horch was compelled to move out of the corporation in 1909 by means of his partners but he developed a fresh corporation in Zwickau and sustained to advertise automobiles with the Horch brand name. On the other hand, he was prosecuted by his previous associates for trademark violation and was compelled to cease from making use of his personal name for his fresh auto industrialized trade, which was the precursor of the Audi Corporation at the present situation that creates the automobiles sold by automobile dealerships such as Audi Oakland.
Re-establishment and growth history of Audi automobile company:
Horch along with his family decided to entitle the corporation Audi, the Latin remark for the German expression “Horch.” The corporation fused in the company of DKW, Wanderer and Horch in the year 1932 which led to the founding of the Auto Union. It was at some point in this phase that the 4 interconnected rings were initially utilized by the corporation, but barely for the Auto Union cars meant for the racing purpose. Every ring symbolizes the 4 companies which combined.
Partners and companions that established and fabricated Audi motor company:
Auto Union was completely under the authority of Daimler-Benz in the year 1959 and Volkswagen paid for the industrial unit situated in Ingolstadt, Germany and also the trade name of the Auto Union in the year 1964. Auto Union combined in the company of NSU in the year 1969 to turn out Audi NSU Auto Union AG. On the other hand, the companionship was cut down into Audi AG as soon as the NSU and Auto Union brands mislaid a little of their advertise petition in the year 1985.
Sales history of Audi:
Audi sales turn down near the beginning of the 1990s for the 80 series of Audi when little fundamental manufacturing problems were exposed. A “Sixty Minutes” statement in the U.S. exposed that the Audi auto picked up the pace even when the footbrake bar was pressed. It was afterward revealed that the accelerator and footbrake bars were positioned too narrowly which led to the driver puzzling them. Thus this drawback was identified and later removed and the present scenario is completely different.
Record sales statistics were recorded in twenty one out of the fifty foremost sales advertises in the year 2004.
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The Volvo XC90 T8 Twin Engine Inscription has been voted Green Car of the Year at the 2016 Professional Driver Car of the Year Awards.
The awards celebrate the best in the private hire, chauffeur and taxi industry, and the Green Car of the Year category was open to any vehicle with CO2 emissions of 70 g/km or below. The XC90 T8 sits comfortably below that figure, with CO2 emissions of just 49 g/km, helped by its innovative petrol-electric plug-in hybrid drivetrain.
That’s not the T8’s only impressive figure. It can be driven for up to 27 miles in zero-emission, virtually silent electric-only mode, and its official combined fuel economy figure is 134.5 mpg. The XC90 T8 has space for seven adults in its luxurious interior, while its boot provides an impressive 967 litres of luggage space when the two rearmost seats are folded down.
Drivers and passengers will certainly appreciate the XC90 T8 Inscription’s beautiful cabin. Nappa soft leather upholstery, natural wood inlays and leather door tops are all standard, as are rear footwell and side step illumination, and integrated sun curtains in the rear doors. Every XC90 T8 also comes with a panoramic glass sunroof and four-zone climate control.
Class-leading connectivity comes as standard, too. The ground-breaking Volvo On Call app allows you to control numerous functions of the car from your mobile device, including the ability to heat or cool the cabin so it’s at the perfect temperature when you and your passengers get in the car. The innovative touch screen control system offers pinch and zoom functionality, and you can even use it while wearing gloves. You can also turn the car into a WiFi hotspot using the increased signal strength of the car’s antenna, while Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration are available.
As you’d expect from a Volvo, safety is paramount. Every XC90 comes with automatic emergency braking, which works day or night, along with pedestrian, cyclist and large animal detection. There are also advanced safety aids to prevent the car from inadvertently leaving the road, while the standard Pilot Assist semi-autonomous drive system takes the strain out of long motorway journeys by helping to regulate the car’s speed, distance from any vehicle in front, and position in its lane.
Volvo’s bespoke chauffeur programme also won praise from the judges. This includes a three-year, 100,000-mile warranty, a like-for-like replacement vehicle, direct aftersales support and service plan options. Contract hire offers of up to 50,000 miles a year are available, too.
Commenting on the award, Mark Bursa, the editor of Professional Driver, said: “The Volvo XC90 T8 Twin Engine offers a great combination of luxury, low running costs and great manufacturer support through a benchmark chauffeur programme.”
Selwyn Cooper, Head of Business Sales for Volvo Car UK, said: “The XC90 T8 is already proving a huge hit with Volvo buyers, and for it to win this award is an honour, especially because it is chosen by leading chauffeur and private hire professionals. The XC90 T8’s blend of space, luxury, tax-efficiency, refinement and safety makes it the perfect car to drive or be driven in.”
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BMW chief envisions a vehicle that “responds to you as an individual’ Harald Krueger MUNICH — BMW CEO Harald Krueger said the breakneck speed of technological advances is giving automakers new rivals such as Tesla but also new opportunities in areas such as artificial intelligence. “Until very recently our competitors were Mercedes, Audi and Porsche,” […](image)
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Volvo CEO Håkan Samuelsson believes the growth in car sharing will cause the world’s car market to split into four main sections.
Speaking at the launch of the Volvo S90 L in Shanghai, Samuelsson said the most popular form of car usage in the near future will be short-term rental.
“Like [ride-hailing services] Uber and Lyft, our role will soon be to provide autonomous cars that are part of that sort of mobility,” he said. “That’s why Volvo has partnered with Uber to grow in this area of the market.”
Samuelsson said the second most popular form of car usage would be peer-to-peer sharing.
“If you need mobility for a longer time, maybe a week, we think there will be a market for car sharing, which we are already exploring,” he said. “While we develop into peer-to-peer car sharing, we must develop car connectivity, because these two are heavily linked.”
With connected cars, it will become convenient to use a smartphone app, for example, to request a car. This sort of car usage will still be relatively short term, so Samuelsson believes it can’t cater for people who want to own a car for longer periods of time.
“When you want your own car, people will use a form of subscription, where they pay a monthly fee, like you do for a phone contract,” said Samuelsson.
He suggested that this sort of contract would be similar to personal contract purchases (PCPs), which are already the most popular way to buy a car in the UK today.
Samuelsson explained that the more traditional purchasing of a car would therefore become the smallest contributor to the new car market.
“Of course, in parallel to this will be the traditional buying of a car, but it will not be the main way anymore,” he said. “Some people will always want to own their own vehicles.”
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Armin G. Schmidt is founder and CEO of Advanced Telematic Systems, designing and guiding the development of software solutions for the mobility industry. Schmidt has held a variety of positions at innovative technology companies across Asia, Europe and the United States.
The Cité de l’Automobile in Mulhouse, France, is an amazing place. It has the largest collection of automobiles on display, thanks to the Swiss brothers Hans and Fritz Schlumpf and their obsession with cars. The money they needed for their collecting came from their business; the brothers owned a spinning mill for woolen products. Funnily enough, the German translation of “Schlumpf” is smurf. If anyone remembers the Smurfs, they would call it smurftastic.
Because of their excessive collection — and also because of the shift in textile production toward Asia in the 1970s — the brothers’ business eventually became insolvent, so they left France and returned to Switzerland. By that time, their collection of automobiles was so valuable that the French government placed a historical protection order on the collection to save it from destruction, break-up or export, and, in 1978 it was deemed a French Historic Monument by the Council of State.
Some years ago I had the privilege of visiting this place, which is now the largest car museum in the world. Indeed, it is a time capsule for the glory days of the automobile. When you walk through the museum’s enormous halls, filled with hundreds of classic cars, you see that most of them are from a time when “startups” (yes, I think you could attribute today’s term to those past entrepreneurs) built cars from scratch, creating brands and fighting for their own piece of the new mobility market. Horses were no longer a state-of-the-art form of transportation, thus horse riding ultimately became a luxury hobby, as we now know it.
The first auto boom was fueled by the invention of new technologies and the industrial revolution, which gave startups at that time the chance to engineer and build the first automobiles with a limited amount of funding. For example, in the 1920s, the main construction method was body-on-frame, which allowed a much more modular construction and the combination of parts from different suppliers. Then the unibody designs came and introduced highly integrated cars with more expensive set-up and development costs — but with positive cost effects on a large scale. With EV we now see the return of concepts with body-on-frame, like the BMW i3 with a rigid frame housing the drivetrain and battery.
These fine startups produced motor vehicles in a time when the entry barrier was not yet defined by the combustion engine — a market that was ultimately dominated for more than 40 years by the likes of GM, Ford, Mercedes, Toyota, BMW, VW and others. This left a huge gap between the big guys and the smaller players, such as McLaren, Bugatti, Lotus and others.
Certainly there were startups like DeLorean, Fisker and Artega, but developing a combustion engine car, manufacturing, marketing and selling it, not to mention maintaining a dealer value chain, was (some say still is) a game dominated by size and pure financial power. Successfully creating a new startup in the car category was no easy task. Every venture receiving less than an estimated $100 million investment would fail, sooner or later. Especially for investors, this category was largely viewed as untouchable, due to the extensive risk involved and a low success rate.
We are seeing a large number of new startups aiming to create new cars, commercial vehicles and other methods of transportation.
That all changed with one guy and a roadshow in Taiwan in 2004. He was trying to secure funding there, and in various other places, for his first model: the Roadster. Most components of the prototype car at that time were sourced and developed on this island of 23 million people, which is famous for supplying more than 80 percent of the world’s PC and Notebook manufacturers, delivering nearly all chips for the iPhones and other consumer electronic devices, as well as being known for its own manufacturing powerhouses, including Foxconn, Pegatron and Wistron.
At the time of Tesla’s launch in 2006, the company’s engines were manufactured at the Tesla facility in Taiwan. Elon Musk understood from the very beginning that the IT and automotive worlds would intersect. He secured the initial funding and started to think big — not listening to the advice from many so-called experts. Tesla raised more than $180 million by 2009, to deliver 147 cars.
Several years, and billions in investments later, the world sees that Tesla was able to do what other companies never dared — attack the traditional heavyweight car industry. Because of computer power, a new level of momentum and the state of evolution, we are now entering another chapter in the “Innovator’s Dilemma” This theory, purported by Harvard professor Clayton Christensen, describes when new technologies cause great firms to fail. And more importantly, competitive products have been created that premium companies like Audi, BMW, Toyota and Mercedes now take very seriously.
The huge financial and technology barriers have been broken down. The venture capital world is delighted by the opportunities and has begun to attack this category. Over the last five years the M&A transactions in this space have grown in excess of $220 billion.
Entry barriers based on highly sophisticated production, such as the combustion engine, will be phased out. Electric components are becoming more mainstream. For instance, e-drivetrains are outsourced nowadays to ODMs, such as Magna, and will eventually go to the Foxconns of this world.
But more importantly, Tesla’s unique advantages in machine learning, and its lack of exposure to legacy systems (internal combustion tech, unconnected cars) give it the chance to tap into larger and faster-growing markets ahead of its competitors. The move from the traditional model without connectivity and computers will change to one of owned autonomy, shared mobility and, eventually, to Autopia-on-demand autonomous mobility.
Don’t be surprised if there are Red Bull-branded cars driving around in the near future.
Even the most innovative mobility concepts eventually require a vehicle. In comparison to today’s vehicles, they might have a different form factor, or be made from different material, be powered differently and controlled in another way. But someone has to develop, manufacture, sell, maintain and guarantee the vehicle. Existing automakers still have those competencies and the ability to adapt over time, if some parameters can change, as described. They have the knowledge and the processes to turn a profit while still producing such a complex, long-lasting, safety focused product, and they know how to scale it. In addition to this, they have an existing brand, reputation and customer loyalty that will last for a certain time.
The premier brands will, for a certain period, have an advantage. And so do the fast and cash-laden newcomers. We also will most likely see brands and companies focusing on certain mobility niches. Many future developments will be based on still-open questions, such as how new vehicles will be used, how urban and rural area mobility will be separated, how fast e-vehicles and autonomous technology will take the lead and be accepted or how regulations will accelerate or slow down certain development.
Consumers still look for some branding values in the automotive environment. Companies such as Porsche, as well as other premium brands, benefit from this, and therefore won’t likely be as affected as other mass-market brands. New and existing brands will be used for cars, as in the past Fender for the VW Beetle, Paul Smith for Mini, Gucci with the Fiat 500 and numerous others. Don’t be surprised if there are Red Bull-branded cars driving around in the near future.
Also, even if automotive mobility becomes smarter and cheaper, brands will play their part. Even easyJet, Virgin and Ryanair, a few low-cost carriers in the aviation industry, are brands with positioning. In aviation, the service providers (airlines) are the popular brands chosen by travelers, not the makers of the vehicles (airplanes). This might be an imaginable parallel between the automotive and aviation industries.
Remember the list of car companies exhibited at the Cité de l’Automobile? Startups that have come and gone, leaving museum pieces as their legacy. In the same vein, clearly not all of the current automobile companies mentioned herein will still be around in the next few years — but some of them will certainly become dominant fixtures in our everyday mobility.
There are so many new brands and innovations entering today’s huge $6.4 trillion (McKinsey) market of mobility that are not only creating cars, but also developing completely new ways of approaching mobility, which will result in fewer fatalities, safer roads and many more improvements.
Some time down the road a museum like the Schlumpf brothers’ will most likely consist of brands that we all know of today. I am looking forward to seeing a collector gathering together all these new vehicles (the ultimate mobile devices) and creating this museum. It will be interesting for our kids and grandchildren — and not simply because it’s associated with Smurfs. History always repeats itself.
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This summer saw the inevitable controversy arise when a Tesla automobile was involved in a fatal traffic accident while operating in its headline-grabbing Autopilot mode. While early reports seem to point toward human error by both parties involved (the truck driver turning across traffic without sufficient time and space, and the Tesla driver allegedly watching a movie while behind the wheel), many people are debating what responsibility falls onto Tesla and its autonomous-driving functions.
Many have called out Musk’s “open beta” roll-out of the technology as irresponsible and dangerous, while others have wondered how a system with supposed redundancies could have misread the emergency situation so poorly. Regardless, it’s put the entire industry of autonomous cars under scrutiny as people ask themselves whether this is the kind of technology that should be on the road at all.
The fact of the matter is that this all stems from the age-old human instinct to fear things they do not understand. Autonomous-driving technology has been intentionally marketed as a hyper-advanced, quantum leap in car technology, closer resembling a NASA planetary rover in terms of technology than a Ford Focus. In reality though, it’s a step or two along the spectrum upon which we’ve been on for a long, long time: increasingly advanced driver safety systems.
Every car today features at least a few of these: airbags, ABS braking and traction control systems, to name a few. These safety features were all designed with the aim of reducing the huge number of vehicle injuries and fatalities every year, and it can be argued that all have done so. That being said, every single one of these technologies has had serious, fatal malfunctions, particularly in early roll-out, but even in mature phases of the technology.
New solutions will always have unfortunate growing pains that sadly result in the loss of human life.
Take for example airbag systems. Between 1990 and 2007, the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) recorded 284 fatalities tied to airbags. While some of these were related to people of small stature, or extremely close driver positioning to the airbag ejection point, others were related to faulty deployment — or, in other words, a malfunction of the technology.
Since initial introduction in the early 1970s, airbags have gone under numerous revisions and improvements to safety. Despite these improvements, in 2016, malfunctions in this technology still remain, most recently with airbag maker Takata having to issue the largest recall in history, involving over 28 million cars and with an associated death toll of at least 11 so far.
Assistive Braking Systems (ABS) doesn’t enjoy a clean record, either. Numerous studies have indicated that ABS systems can actually cause a higher incidence of dangerous vehicle rollovers in certain situations.
Despite these edge cases of malfunction, or risks in marginal conditions, both airbags and ABS technologies enjoy a ubiquitous presence in cars. In fact, most consumers would simply not buy a car without these features today. It’s recognized that, while not perfect, these systems on the balance provide greater safety than otherwise. Malfunctions have dogged both technologies for decades, but nobody has thrown out the baby with the bath water, so to speak.
Yet here we are with what amounts to more advanced versions of cruise control — which some companies have branded “autopilot” or “autonomous” to appeal to our ever-increasing “technophilia” — and we hold it up to a far higher standard than these preceding technologies. Broken down into constituent parts, these systems could be called things like “blind-spot warning system” and “rear-end collision avoidance” and they would likely be embraced eagerly. But when brought together under such terms as “artificial intelligence” or “self-driving,” people seem to immediately gain a sense of unease about the whole affair.
The fact of the matter is that our vehicles are creeping up a trajectory of better safety through technology that we’ve always been on. Rolling out new solutions will always have unfortunate growing pains that sadly result in the loss of human life, but the stark reality is that they always have. Our inherent anxiousness or even fear of cars taking away our control of the vehicle is unfounded, because, in many ways, we’ve already let them.
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