Technology

Automakers exceed U.S. fuel-economy rules for 2nd straight year, EPA says

11:04 am U.S. ET | March 26, 2015

Automakers exceeded their targets for improving fuel economy and tailpipe emissions by "a wide margin" for the second year in a row, the EPA said. Vehicles sold in the U.S. are on average the most fuel efficient they've ever been, averaging 24.1 mpg in 2013, a 0.5 mpg increase from the previous year....
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Toyota targets big savings in factory, product-development spending

12:30 am U.S. ET | March 26, 2015

Toyota outlined bold savings targets in factory investment and vehicle development, along with gains in fuel efficiency, through an aggressive restructuring being launched this year. The overhaul, part of a switch to new modularized product platforms, has been years in the making and is designed to fuel the company's expansion....
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New generation of cheaper batteries adds power to hybrids, cut fuel use

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 25, 2015

A new generation of hybrid cars that combine electric and gas power in new ways are emerging as a low-cost alternative for automakers and consumers as batteries get cheaper and more efficient. The new microhybrid systems are coming on line just as automakers face a U.S. goal of 54.5 miles per gallon on average by 2025....
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Average U.S. gasoline usage lowest in 3 decades, study says

2:09 pm U.S. ET | March 25, 2015

With improvements in vehicle fuel economy, U.S. drivers’ average gasoline consumption is the lowest it’s been in at least 30 years, according to research by the University of Michigan released today....
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Automakers race to double the driving range of affordable electric cars

March 25, 2015 12:06 CET

Automakers are readying a new generation of mass-market electric cars with more than double the driving range of today's Nissan Leaf, betting that breakthroughs by battery suppliers will increase demand and help them compete better with Tesla....
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RICHARD TRUETT

BLOG: The latest tech is great -- until you have to replace it

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 24, 2015

There is a downside to rapidly advancing automotive technology: Break something, and you'll pay an eye-popping amount to get it fixed....
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Chevrolet's Teen Driver safety feature to debut on redesigned Malibu

11:15 am U.S. ET | March 24, 2015

Chevrolet says Teen Driver is the first feature in the industry to offer what is essentially a report card that allows parents to view on a display how their teens drive. Teen Driver automatically mutes the radio until the front seat belts are fastened. Parents can set the radio's maximum volume to a lower level and select a maximum speed between 40 and 75 mph, which activates a visual warning and audible chime if exceeded....
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WHAT A DRAG

Designers use new tricks, and the wind tunnel

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 23, 2015

Automakers facing stiffer global fuel economy and emissions standards are increasing efforts to improve fuel efficiency. After powertrain improvements and weight reductions, slippery aerodynamics is the hottest area of research to boost efficiency....
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Remote updates speed Tesla's Autopilot push

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 23, 2015

Tesla doesn't have the r&d budget of rivals such as Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz. But the Palo Alto, Calif., startup sees its ability to send over-the-air software updates as a crucial edge in the race to self-driving cars because it can quickly roll out technology to vehicles that have already been sold....
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Technology makes vehicles slipperier

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 23, 2015

Drag coefficient measures the resistance of an object as it moves through air or fluid. The lower the number, the slipperier the vehicle, and the less fuel it burns. The drag coefficient for new vehicles has been dropping fast as designers and aerodynamicists use powerful new computer simulation software....
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An Audi obstacle, and a lesson in creating self-driving cars

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 23, 2015

The tale of an Audi prototype and a piece of desert tumbleweed illustrates one of the most daunting challenges in designing self-driving cars: teaching them to deal with the unexpected. It’s all part of the field of “deep learning,” which aims to train computers to process data in a way that mimics the human brain....
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IT'S ABOUT TIME

Automakers see Apple Watch as chance to widen acceptance of connected-car features

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 23, 2015

Smartwatches are in their early days, but automakers see the rollout of the Apple Watch as a seminal moment. If any company has the clout to make smartwatches desirable to the masses, clearing the way for automakers to pitch new connected-car features, they say, it is the company that invented the iPod and iPhone....
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Why a Japanese supplier is upping its game

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 22, 2015

Aisin Seiki, the world's fifth biggest auto supplier, is doubling the size of its global design division as it expands into new products and targets new customers....
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In era of streaming music, radio rocks on

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 22, 2015

Radio has proved incredibly resilient, and the auto industry has taken notice, investing in digital radio even as CD players disappear from the dash. This year in the U.S., about half of new cars sold will be outfitted with a service called HD Radio, which offers a crisper signal and thousands of extra stations....
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Cadillac will fit CT6 with a new twin-turbo V6

10:48 am U.S. ET | March 20, 2015

Cadillac has promised that its forthcoming CT6 will form the tip of its technological spear, packing features such as an autonomous-drive system and a rearview mirror that streams video from a rear camera....
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Honda launches $1 million campaign to draw Ohio students to manufacturing

12:15 pm U.S. ET | March 20, 2015

Honda is joining a push in Ohio to interest middle and high school students in manufacturing careers, a move stemming from increasing concerns about possible future shortages of qualified workers....
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Porsche seeks better 'connected car' technology, exec says

March 19, 2015 15:47 CET

Porsche is working to develop a more "connected car" that better integrates mobile technology into vehicles without distracting drivers....
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BMW's sales crown scrutinized as profits shrink, rivals catch up

March 17, 2015 15:58 CET

BMW's record car sales have meant big profits that have funded incentives and investment in new technologies. But competitors are catching up and profits are shrinking. Some industry observers are wondering if the "sales grow, profits look after themselves" formula still works....
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Self-driving cars will prove safer than humans, Musk says

2:54 pm U.S. ET | March 17, 2015

It may become illegal for humans to take the wheel once self-driving cars have proven themselves, Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk said. “In the distant future, I think people may outlaw driving cars because it's too dangerous,” Musk said at a conference earlier today....
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All new EU cars will need emergency call technology from 2018

March 17, 2015 17:09 CET

All new cars sold in the European Union from 2018 will have to be equipped with technology to contact emergency services in the case of an accident....
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GUEST BLOG - DARON GIFFORD

BLOG: Why suppliers need to think differently or face extinction

1:56 pm U.S. ET | March 16, 2015

Auto suppliers need to have a plan that accounts for likely scenarios 10 years from now that may include Silicon Valley giants engineering cars that drive themselves. This is no small change....
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Valeo open to acquisitions in growth areas

March 16, 2015 14:08 CET

Valeo is open to acquisitions that could bolster its product offerings in high-growth areas such as fuel efficiency and autonomous driving, CEO Jacques Aschenbroich said....
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WHY CASH IS KING

Profound technological change, uncertainty will test automakers' reserves

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 16, 2015

The world's major automakers are setting on tens of billions of dollars in cash. Given the uncertainties they face, they're going to need it. That's one reason why GM's decision to spend $5 billion on a stock buyback drew so much scrutiny last week....
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AUTOMOTIVE NEWS EUROPE E-MAGAZINE

Audi, Mercedes execs bullish on self-driving cars

March 16, 2015 06:01 CET

Daimler CEO Dieter Zetsche and Audi technical development chief Ulrich Hackenberg believe autonomous driving is the next big thing. But other industry leaders wonder whether customers really want cars to take over a task that many people still enjoy doing themselves....
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O'Neal's goal: Smaller but stronger Delphi

12:01 am U.S. ET | March 16, 2015

When Delphi Automotive took journalists for rides in its driverless Audi SQ45 this winter during the International CES, the retrofitted crossover wasn't restricted to the highway....
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