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Welcome again to The Station, your central hub for all previous, current and future technique of shifting individuals and packages from Level A to Level B.
This coming week I can be heading to Los Angeles to take a look at the LA Auto Present in addition to a number of EV and AV associated occasions. Perhaps I’ll see a few of you there!
Let’s get proper to it.
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Taur, a scooter firm we wrote about in February, has launched its digital showroom, a really cool interactive web site that permits potential scooter patrons to just about check out completely different features of the scooter, from easy methods to arrange the foot platforms and activate the throttle to easy methods to activate the lights and cost the battery.
I lately obtained the chance to check out one in every of Taur’s front-facing scooters, and I’ll admit it’s a really cool journey. The scooter doesn’t have a standard board in your ft to stability on, however relatively has a foot deck that lets riders face ahead whereas using. I discovered that this gave me larger visibility of my peripherals — having my left foot in entrance of my proper on a standard kick scooter meant I may see to my proper fairly effectively, however had much less vary of movement to look over my left shoulder. Whereas, dealing with ahead on a Taur scooter meant I had equal vary of movement to look over every shoulder.
Maybe probably the most fascinating a part of the journey was that it didn’t even really feel like I used to be using a scooter. It nearly felt like I used to be using a moped or a motorbike (perhaps one thing to do with being entrance dealing with?) I saved mistakenly calling it “an incredible bike” — a time period co-founder Carson Brown and head of selling Ed Turner stated they had been additionally listening to from others. It could be extra correct to say that the motion of using Taur’s scooter was just like the motion of snowboarding, the place you flip by pushing your weight off every foot, relatively than by angling the handlebars. This gave me a greater feeling of management and a way that I may do some severe shredding on this factor.
The fats tires actually made for a bouncy expertise. I rode the scooter over uneven roads in a parking zone in Greenpoint, Brooklyn, and as soon as I obtained used to the jostling, I felt protected sufficient to courageous the meanest of potholes.
Taur is specializing in launching in Los Angeles this yr and can be operating pop ups there over the subsequent few months. The startup has nearly 1,000 models to ship to LA this yr to satisfy pre-orders and basic gross sales.
In different information …
Amazon and different retailers are dealing with criticism for promoting gadgets that permit e-bikes to be upgraded to unlawful speeds for as little as $100.
Chicken is seemingly launching in Qatar, which is bizarre as a result of the corporate lately stated it was exiting a number of dozen cities all over the world, together with within the Center East.
Honda is growing and testing a variety of micromobility automobiles outfitted with “cooperative intelligence,” a expertise that mixes cameras, voice recognition, AI and commonplace controls to allow extra “human-like” cooperation between individuals and the automobiles. The automobiles would be capable of generate a 3D map of their environment in actual time.
Revel is taking its e-mopeds out of Washington D.C. The corporate stated it needed to focus its consideration on rising out its electrical ridehail and EV charging companies.
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Deal of the week
The wave of consolidation that has affected the autonomous car trade has prolonged to lidar firms as effectively. For instance, take this week’s merger of Ouster and Velodyne — two lidar firms that individually went public through particular goal acquisition firms.
Underneath this all-stock transaction, each Ouster and Velodyne will preserve a 50% stake within the new firm.
Why are lidar firms sucked up into this wave of consolidation? Too many lidar firms are competing for a sliver of enterprise from OEMs. (That complete supply-demand drawback). Scaling up can be an costly endeavor.
Velodyne and Ouster have every snapped up lidar firms previous to this merger. Velodyne acquired in 2022 Bluecity.ai, and final yr, Ouster purchased lidar startup Sense Photonics.
What lidar firm is subsequent?
Different offers that obtained my consideration this week …
Acerta Analytics, a sophisticated analytics firm that helps automakers and suppliers enhance high quality in manufacturing processes and assist early defect detection, raised $10.4 million CAD. The Sequence B spherical was led by BDC Capital’s Industrial Innovation and Thrive Enterprise Funds with participation from current buyers OMERS Ventures and StandUp Ventures.
Elon Musk almost $4 billion value of Tesla shares.
Foxconn elevated its funding in EV startup Lordstown Motors by shopping for $170 million in widespread inventory and newly created most popular shares. As soon as the deal is full, Foxconn will maintain all of Lordstown’s excellent most popular inventory and 18.3% of its widespread inventory on a professional forma foundation. Foxconn may even have the correct to 2 board seats.
Kyte, the rental automotive supply startup based in 2019, raised $60 million in Sequence B spherical led by InterAlpen Companions, whose founder, Stephen George is becoming a member of Kyte’s Board. Different new buyers embrace Valor Fairness Companions, Anthemis, Citi Ventures, and Hearst Ventures, with vital participation from current buyers DN Capital plus 1984 Ventures, FJ Labs, and City Innovation Fund. This spherical brings Kyte’s whole funding to roughly $300 million throughout fairness and debt.
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Notable reads and different tidbits
Aurora is partnering with Ryder to pilot on-site fleet upkeep at Aurora’s terminal in South Dallas, a step nearer to constructing out the community Aurora will want because it strikes in the direction of commercialization.
TuSimple co-founder Xiaodi Hou was fired earlier month from his CEO, president and CTO posts by the corporate’s board. That transfer may need stripped Huo of energy —he was even faraway from his place as chairman of the board and member of the board’s authorities safety committee. However it didn’t immobilize him.
Hou teamed up with co-founder and main shareholder Mo Chen and fired board members Brad Buss, Karen C. Francis, Michelle Sterling and Reed Werner. Hou grew to become the only real remaining member of the board; he then appointed Chen and Cheng Lu, a shareholder and the previous CEO, to the board.
Whereas energy now rests again within the fingers of the co-founders, it’s unclear how this may have an effect on an investigation into the corporate by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Securities and Alternate Fee and Committee on Overseas Funding within the U.S. (CFIUS). The investigation is seemingly centered on TuSimple’s relationship with Hydron, a hydrogen-powered trucking firm led by Chen and backed by Chinese language buyers.
Waymo reached two milestones this previous week.
The corporate opened up its absolutely driverless ride-hail service in downtown Phoenix to most of the people. And the California Division of Motor Autos permitted an modification to Waymo’s current deployment allow to incorporate driverless, in addition to drivered, operations. Waymo will now be capable of cost for meals and grocery supply utilizing its autonomous automobiles, which can function with out anybody within the driver’s seat. All Waymo wants now could be a driverless deployment allow from the California Public Utilities Fee (CPUC) to lastly begin charging for rider-only autonomous rides within the metropolis.
Arrival stated in its Q3 earnings that it doesn’t count on to earn income till after 2023. Sure, I stated REVENUE. The EV firm, which is restructuring its enterprise to develop industrial vans for the U.S. as a substitute of Europe and is vulnerable to being delisted from the Nasdaq change, reported a third-quarter lack of $310.3 million, in contrast with a $30.6 million loss for a similar interval a yr in the past.
Canoo stated in its Q3 earnings that it entered into an settlement to accumulate a car manufacturing facility in Oklahoma Metropolis. This shouldn’t be confused with Canoo’s “megamicro manufacturing facility” in Pryor, Oklahoma. This different facility will assist Canoo ramp manufacturing and produce EVs to market in 2023. One other merchandise of notice in Q3: Canoo closed out the quarter with money and money equivalents of $6.8 million. 😬
Lyft reported a internet lack of $422.2 million within the Q3. Almost one third of that loss ($135.7 million) was as a result of shutdown of Argo AI, which Lyft had a small stake in.
Rivian affirmed that the corporate is on monitor to hit its annual manufacturing goal of 25,000 automobiles regardless of unpredictable provide chain crunches and element shortages. The corporate remains to be dropping cash and has needed to modify a few of its plans for progress. Rivian reported a internet lack of $1.72 billion on income of $536 million in Q3 and delayed the launch of its next-generation R2 EV platform.
Electrical automobiles, batteries & charging
Audi and Redwood Supplies are teaming as much as accumulate end-of-life batteries from cell telephones, electrical toothbrushes and different lithium-ion-powered gadgets at taking part dealerships nationwide.
California voters shot down Proposition 30, which might have made EVs extra inexpensive for some residents, dealing a blow to Lyft and the EV trade alike. Prop 30 would have taxed residents making greater than $2 million a yr to subsidize electrical vehicles and public charging stations in addition to funded wildfire prevention applications.
Tesla opened up its EV connector design to automakers and suppliers. The goal? Tesla desires to be the brand new commonplace in North America. Individually, Zoom stated it’s working with Tesla to carry video conferencing into its automobiles. (Zoom conferences would solely be potential when the car is parked).
Volvo unveiled the EX90, a flagship electrical seven-passenger SUV loaded with sensors and software program that the corporate hopes will push it forward in an more and more saturated luxurious EV market. Luminar founder and CEO Austin Russell shared his ideas in regards to the EX90 (the corporate’s lidar is built-in into the EV) and known as it a brand new period of security. He additionally addresses consolidation within the market and struggles inside the AV trade.
Wish to learn extra of the notable reads plus different bits of reports from the week? The Station’s weekly emailed e-newsletter has much more on EVs and AVs, way forward for flight, insider data and extra. Click on right here after which verify “The Station” to obtain the complete version of the e-newsletter each weekend in your inbox.