Archive for the ‘GM’ Category

Tesla has a problem with racism in its factory—so do many of its rivals

November 30th, 2018
Robotics arms install the front seats to a Model 3 at the Tesla factory in Fremont, California.

Enlarge / Robotics arms install the front seats to a Model 3 at the Tesla factory in Fremont, California. (credit: Mason Trinca for The Washington Post via Getty Images)

At least six black former Tesla employees have told The New York Times that they suffered from racial harassment while working at the company. Three racial discrimination lawsuits have been filed against Tesla since early last year.

One man, DeWitt Lambert, shared a video in which an unidentified man walks around Tesla's factory floor and—addressing Lambert—threatens to "cut you up … so everybody can have a piece of you, n*****."

In a lengthy statement to Ars Technica, Tesla faulted the Times for extrapolating from "a very small number of claims" to paint Tesla in an unflattering light.

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Posted in cars, Fiat Chrysler, Ford, GM, honda, Tesla | Comments (0)

GM wants alternative to fuel economy standards from Obama, rollback from Trump

October 28th, 2018
Here's an official Bolt press picture from Chevy.

Here's an official Bolt press picture from Chevy.

On Friday, General Motors wrote to the Trump Administration in support of a national zero-emissions vehicle (ZEV) program, which would require seven percent of automakers' sales to be zero-emissions by 2021. That percentage would increase by two percent per year until reaching 25 percent in 2030.

The proposal came in the form of a comment to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which has put forth its own set of rules to rollback auto efficiency standards signed into law by the Obama Administration.

GM is a member of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, which has been a proponent of Trump's changes to the fuel efficiency standards designed by Obama's EPA.

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Posted in battery electric vehicles, Biz & IT, cars, Chevy Bolt, fuel efficiency, GM | Comments (0)

GM, Lyft could deploy “thousands” of autonomous Bolts in 2018

February 18th, 2017
An array of Bolt EVs

An array of Bolt EVs (credit: Martin Klimek for Chevrolet)

On Friday afternoon, Reuters reported that two sources familiar with GM’s plans said the automaker would deploy thousands of Chevrolet Bolts equipped with self-driving equipment in 2018. The move would be in partnership with ride-hailing service Lyft.

GM has said it won’t sell autonomous vehicles to individuals. Instead, the automotive giant is targeting fleets for private companies and ride-hailing companies. The American automaker partnered with Lyft a year ago to work on driverless autos, and it even purchased a Lyft and Uber rival called Sidecar after that startup closed down.

GM announced yesterday that its in-house car-sharing service, called Maven, would launch 100 Bolts for rental in the city of Los Angeles. Those electric vehicles won’t be autonomous, but Lyft drivers will be able to take advantage of the Maven cars and use them as their work vehicle for a fee.

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Posted in Bolt, Cars Technica, Chevrolet, GM | Comments (0)

New diesel Chevy Cruze can go an estimated 702 miles on a single tank of fuel

February 16th, 2017


This week, Chevrolet announced that its new 2017 diesel Cruze will get a jaw-dropping 52 mpg on the highway, making it the car with the best fuel economy among non-hybrid and non-electric models in America. Chevy says that means the car can drive an estimated 702 miles on a highway before it runs out of diesel.

(As an aside: Ars recommends investing in adult diapers or inventing a Dune-style stillsuit to reclaim your—err…water—before you try to drive 700 miles in one go in this car.)

The 1.6L, four-cylinder turbodiesel engine has 137hp (102kW) and 240lb-ft (325Nm) of torque, as you’d expect from a diesel passenger sedan. (For comparison, the gas-powered 2017 Chevy Cruze gets 177lb-ft [240Nm] of torque.)

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Posted in Cars Technica, chevy, Cruze, diesel, GM | Comments (0)

GM and the US Army have developed a monster hydrogen fuel cell truck

October 4th, 2016

Late last year, we got news that General Motors would work with the US Army to develop a hydrogen-fuel-cell-powered pickup truck. On Monday at an annual US Army association meeting, GM took the wraps off the beast, which the Army will test in Michigan over the next year.

The US Army’s tank research center collaborated with GM to build the Chevy Colorado ZH2, which has a reinforced body that’s six-and-a-half feet tall and seven feet wide. The truck will chew up terrain with 37-inch tires and a special suspension built for off-road handling.

The ZH2 has a single motor that’s powered by a hydrogen fuel cell and a battery. The advantage of that hydrogen fuel cell is that the only byproduct is water, and the electricity-powered engine is quieter than a traditional combustion engine. It also gives off less heat, which GM said would help the car in stealth situations, where the Army would want to reduce acoustic and thermal signatures. According to Wired, the ZH2’s hydrogen fuel cell produces two gallons of water an hour.

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Posted in Army, Cars Technica, chevy, GM, hydrogen, hydrogen fuel cell | Comments (0)

GM says it misstated fuel economy, Opel denies emissions cheating allegations

May 19th, 2016

(credit: valérie kuki)

This week brought confusion for General Motors and its German subsidiary Opel.

US-based General Motors told the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that it had misstated the fuel economy on some 130,000 Chevy Traverses, GMC Acadias, and Buick Enclaves from 2016, overestimating the cars’ mileage by 1-2 miles per gallon. GM has said it will compensate customers for the miles per gallon they thought they were getting, possibly with gift cards. The automaker also halted the sales of another 60,000 affected vehicles.

GM said that the misstated mileage came from incorrect calculations made by the company when it was updating numbers for their 2016 models. The company said that new “emissions-related” hardware had changed the cars’ miles per gallon, and GM failed to take that change into account. GM noted that its engineers discovered the error as they were working on the 2017 models.

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Posted in Cars Technica, emissions, GM, Opel, Volkswagen | Comments (0)

Chevrolet’s 2016 Cruze sells what young people value most: Lots of mpg, free GBs

May 3rd, 2016

(credit: Megan Geuss)

NASHVILLE, TN—For the last several years, GM’s Chevrolet has remade itself deftly, rising from the ashes of bankruptcy to deliver cars that perform well, stretch for fuel economy, and judiciously incorporate new tech. The first Chevy Cruze was one of those cars. It hit car lots in 2009 and saw respectable sales—as of 2014, the Cruze line sold more than 900,000 vehicles in the US alone.

Specs at a glance: 2016 Chevy Cruze
Body Type 4-door compact
Layout Front-wheel drive
Steering Rack-mounted electric power steering
Horsepower 153 hp @ 5600 rpm
Torque 177 lb-ft @ 2000-4000 rpm
Fuel Economy Manual: 29/41 mph
Auto (LS/LT): 30/42 mph
Auto (Premier): 30/40 mph
Weight 2,932lbs (LT Automatic)
Dimensions Headroom: 38.9″ in front, 37.3″ in rear
Legroom: 42″ in front, 36.1″ in rear
Base price $17,495
Price as tested (Premium RS) $29,035

Now Chevy is introducing the 2016 Cruze, but the Detroit automaker stresses that this new model is a significant departure from the old line. This metamorphosis has taken place to accommodate a continued shift in priorities among car buyers these days, who value fuel economy and connectivity above all else.

Chevy swung for the fences to meet those two priorities. The new Cruze comes with 24GB or 24 months (whichever one runs out first) of data from AT&T, broadcast from an internal antenna to a 50 ft radius around the car. Chevy also says that its LT and LS models of the car will get a whopping 42mpg. That’s without a hybrid engine.

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GM, Toyota make big investments—like $1 billion big— in autonomous car startups

March 11th, 2016

This has been a big week and a big year for small autonomous vehicle startups. This morning, General Motors announced that it had purchased Cruise Automation, a Silicon Valley-based autonomous vehicle startup of 40 people that already has a permit from the California DMV to test its systems on public roads in that state. And on Wednesday, Toyota hired all 16 employees of Jaybridge Robotics, a Massachusetts-based self-driving car company.

In GM’s case, Re/code reports that anonymous sources say the American automaker spent more than $1 billion to acquire Cruise, which will remain in Silicon Valley while it works under GM’s umbrella. Cruise had previously raised $18.8 million in funding, and it recently released a $10,000 after-market system that would make an Audi A4 or S4 self-driving.

GM is hardly being under-the-radar about its self-driving car ambitions. Earlier this year, the automaker pledged $500 million to Lyft to partner with the ride-sharing company in autonomous taxi research. A few weeks later, it also bought the defunct ride-sharing service Sidecar.

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Posted in autonomous vehicle, Cars Technica, GM, self-driving car, Toyota | Comments (0)

Chevrolet’s autonomous, electric concept car has a swivel chair driver’s seat

April 21st, 2015

Chevrolet showed off its latest concept car this week in Shanghai with a nod to the not-so-distant future. The Chevrolet-FNR is an electric vehicle that can also drive autonomously, but the real eye-catcher is the car’s design, marked by dragonfly dual swing doors and a hubcap-free set of wheels.

Within the car, the front seats swivel 180 degrees to face the rear seats, allowing the driver to give complete control of the act of driving over to the car’s computer. Obviously, this is just a concept car, but it’s not absurd to imagine that this kind of trust in the car’s driving might be possible in several years. That would be pending government approval, of course: autonomous cars are already on US roads today, but several US states have ruled that the driver of an autonomous vehicle must stay alert and in complete control of the vehicle at all times. Component-maker Delphi recently did a cross-country trek in an autonomous vehicle, and in a few states, the driver was required to keep at least one hand on the wheel.

The Chevrolet-FNR also includes an iris-recognition start, as well as a wireless charging system (so your garage can be clear of unsightly power cords, presumably). A roof-mounted radar system maps out the surrounding environment as you drive.

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