Apple was recently approved to test autonomous vehicles on the streets of California by the DMV. The long rumored Apple car project has been picking up in the recent months. We discuss the puzzle of what Apple could be working on and how they could bring a car or transportation service to market, and the difference in strategy compared to Tesla.
Caleb saw a Model 3 release candidate in person near Tesla HQ, and managed to take 25 photos of it up close. We discuss the sighting and impressions. And we also discuss the market the Model 3 is going to be competing in, the compact luxury sedan market against the BMW 3 series, the Audi A4, the Mercedes C-class and many others.
Our spy shots: http://theteslashow.com/model-3-spy-shots/
Intel is buying Mobileye for $15 billion. Mobileye was a key supplier for Tesla’s Autopilot before Tesla moved to the new HW2 suite and Tesla Vision for software. We discuss the history of Mobileye, how they work with major automakers for ADAS, and their intentions to move into full self-driving functionality. We also unpack why Intel wanted Mobileye and how it will help bring the technology to market sooner.
We unpack Elon’s recent tweetstorm focused on the Model 3 and the first video of a release candidate version of the Model 3. We are joined by a special guest Trev Page who runs Model 3 Owners Club. We cover what it means for Tesla to change tact and start with RWD only vehicles, the bigger goals of a smooth production ramp, and we discuss how the HUD is out and how it is a good sign Tesla has learned their lesson from Model X.
In Part 2 of our battery episode we continue our discussion with Bernard Kim. We cover all sorts of topics. Why does capacity and thus range go down over time? Why can you brick a Tesla? What are the limits to the speed you can charge a battery? Does the rumbling from a Tesla cause any issue for the batteries? How can we know a battery will actually last for 10 years or more? How new developments in precise measurement instruments impacts the ability to iterate on new chemistries. As well as what is coming next in lithium ion batteries, how much innovation is chemistry limited, vs. manufacturing capability limited.
We have a special two part episode about batteries, the fundamental enabling technology for Tesla. Since it’s such a big topic area, we brought in a special guest, Bernard Kim a PhD from University of California Berkley specializing in advanced battery technology to discuss everything batteries –their history, how they work, why AA’s are different than what’s used by Tesla, what causes batteries to degrade and more.
We discuss the history of Tesla’s AC induction motor, which is the basis for the electric propulsion system in the S, X, and soon Model 3. As well as how the AC induction motor works, why it’s used in electric cars, and its inherent benefits to the vehicles and Tesla’s particular innovations on motor technology.
We unpack Tesla’s Q4 2016 results. We discuss how SolarCity is doing now it is a part of Tesla, S & X, and a deep dive into the news and predicted production ramp on Model 3. And our predictions for the yet to be unannounced features for Model 3.
We discuss Lucid Motors and their first car, the Air. Lucid has recently come out of stealth mode after nearly 10 years. We discuss their founding, their key people, their Tesla connections, their production capabilities, their luxury sedan the Air, and our thoughts on their approach and our take on the Air.
We discuss the news that Tesla will be pausing production to prepare for Model 3 production. We then discuss what we know about Model 3 – the factory ramp, the Gigafactory progress, Autonomy, the interior, and performance stats.
We discuss Tesla Energy’s newest deployment of 400 Powerpacks at Southern California Edison’s Mira Loma Substation. We unpack the sizable impact Tesla’s utility scale storage will have on the electric grid. Also, how Tesla energy benefits programs like Model 3 and future Gigafactories.
We discuss the recent report released by the NHTSA about the May 7th, 2016 Tesla fatality. We unpack their findings, what if any flaws they found in Autopilot, the reduction in crash rate they identified due to Autopilot, and the impact this finding will have on Tesla’s approach to incremental rollout of autonomous features.
We discuss the current state of Autopilot. We recap the regularity of Tesla’s October Autopilot releases, what Tesla’s recent hire of Chris Lattner means for the company and why it’s important, and the initial rollout of Enhanced Autopilot.
We took a field trip to test drive the Bolt EV, Chevrolet’s new all-electric 238 mile range $30k (after US Federal rebate) vehicle. We share our impressions about every aspect of the vehicle. We also took photos which we reference during the episode, photos here: http://theteslashow.com/bolt-ev-test-drive
We discuss the latest news with Faraday Future and their recent unveil of their production intent vehicle, the FF 91. We discuss Faraday Future through the lens of the key elements of an automotive company – the team, funding, production capability, the car itself, distribution, and the market and competition. We also cover the specifics of their CES unveil and our thoughts on their prospects. Video of the unveil
We discuss Tesla Service Centers and Tesla’s broader approach to service. Tesla owns, operates, and staffs their own service centers for all of their vehicles. We cover the costs for service, their current capacity and what’s unique about Tesla service. Due to their vertical integration and technology in the cars, Tesla has a unique opportunity to provide more proactive service and improve the vehicles through direct learnings from servicing.
We discuss Tesla’s distribution strategy with their Stores and Galleries. We cover their history, the overall strategy, their influence both indirect and direct from Apple retail, and how the retail experience is different from traditional car dealerships. Plus we cover our personal experience visiting different stores and the details we appreciate most.
We unpack the history of car dealerships and how they have caused challenges for Tesla across the US. We discuss how dealership law in the US grew and what the dealership trade groups have done to block new entrants like Tesla. And how Tesla is slowly but surely opening their own stores, sans dealerships.
We continue our conversation on neural networks and deep learning. We dig into the major automotive players who are using neural networks and deep learning in their approaches. We cover what Comma.ai is up to, Mobileye's point of view, Nvidia and their OS for self driving cars and how Tesla is already using them to power Autopilot and will be integral in Enhanced Autopilot and Self-Driving.
We dig deep into neural networks and AI as it pertains to Tesla. Neural networks have been in the news with Tesla’s full self-driving announcements. We discuss the history of neural networks, deep learning and AI. The advantages of neural networks and why they have come into more prominence recently. And we talk about our own efforts to build a car detection neural network. See our results here: http://theteslashow.com/neural-network-images