Toronto, Ontario -- July 15, 2019 - This has been a wild week in the world of autonomous and electric vehicles. From major partnerships to a big shift in the A.V manufacturing market, Collision Repair's weekly report has everything E.V. and A.V covered!

Ford and VW Partner Up

Ford and Volkswagen joined forces on Friday to announce that they would be working together to create more autonomous and electric vehicles. 

Other issues the new partnership wants to focus on is slashing manufacturing and development prices on a global scale.

“Our global alliance is beginning to demonstrate even greater promise, and we are continuing to look at other areas on which we might collaborate,” stated VW’s Chief Executive, Herbert Diess.

Volkswagen has promised to invest $2.6 billion into further development of Ford's self-driving vehicle, the Argo AI. Ford will begin building an electric car using VW’s MEB electric vehicle platform.

With this new partnership, Ford hopes to build 600,000 new electric vehicles. 

 

Reaping the Rebates

B.C. and Quebec EV-drivers have recently been reaping the rebates that come alongside driving mean, green, and clean electric vehicles.

According to Transport Canada, between May 1 and June 21, more than 8,800 incentive requests were submitted under Ottawa’s three-year, zero-emission vehicles incentive program. The program offers drivers of electric vehicles a $5,000 incentive for producing zero-emissions while they drive, and the sum total of the incentive is equalling out to about 44 million dollars.

Quebec reigns champ for most incentive claims, with more than 5,200 throughout the province, followed closely by B.C. with more than 2300.

“It speaks to the effectiveness of the incentive,” stated Neil MacEachern of Plug In B.C. “There’s a lot more selection out there for vehicles, and people are taking advantage of the opportunity to capitalize on that.”

 

Low-Cost LiDAR

LiDAR - a laser pulse based radar that is a key part of autonomous vehicles - has suddenly dropped significantly in price, making the future of A.V. production much cheaper. 

According to TechCrunch, Luminar's Iris LiDAR systems will cost less than $1,000 per unit for production vehicles. The LiDAR system is what detects pedestrians, cars, and other obstacles on the road.

Sometimes running up to $75,000 for a top-of-the-line system, this is a massive saving for manufacturers hoping to produce inexpensive and well-working autonomous vehicles. 

According to Iris, not only is the system dropping in price, but it is also receiving a big upgrade with, software that will cover, "sensor fusion, auto-calibration, tracking, object detection, classification, and simulation."

Iris is set to release the system to commercial vehicle producers by 2022. 

 

BYD Strikes Big

Ever heard of BYD? Probably not. However, this small name company is making big strides as China's top car manufacturer with a new specialty in electric vehicles. 

BYD - standing for Build Your Dreams - is a massive automotive manufacturing company that builds buses, electric bikes, and most recently, electric vehicles. And now, the company is expanding across seas and opening shop in Canada with a brand-new 45,000 sq. ft. facility.

According to the Globe and Mail, "BYD had last year planned to open the site with about 40 workers, aimed at boosting green manufacturing in Ontario, Canada’s most populous province."

The facility will focus on creating new electric buses for the TTC as hopes to employ many who may be looking for work after GM's closing.

“We are dedicated to partnering with municipalities across Canada, and we are passionate about our mission to create a cleaner environment here in North America and across the globe,” stated President of BYD, Stella Li.

 

 

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