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Inside Automotive (Aug 9th, 2018)

Today's issue of Inside Automotive was made possible by Zemax

1. New York City will cap the number of ride-hailing vehicles on city streets. The City Council overwhelmingly passed legislation that will cap the number of for-hire vehicles for a year and allow the city to set a minimum pay rate for drivers. In the year that the cap is in place, the city will study the effects of ride-hailing on traffic and other factors in the city. New York Mayor Bill de Blasio has praised the bills and said he planned to sign them into law. The cap will be placed immediately, once signed. Ride-hailing companies that service the city extensively, including Uber and Lyft, and some civil rights organizations were opposed to the legislation, which they argued would make it more difficult to find rides within the city and opened the door for more discrimination. — NYT

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2. Tesla shares have dropped following pressure from investors on its move to a private company. Tesla CEO Elon Musk has assured investors that he has secured the funding necessary to take the company private, buying out any shareholders that would like to sell at $420 per share. However, some investors are skeptical about the source of the funding to make such a move possible, as there has been no evidence to back up Musk’s plans. Bloomberg spoke with people associated with 15 financial institutions and technology firms, speaking on the condition of anonymity, and all said they weren’t aware of secured financing before Musk posted his tweet. The Securities and Exchange Commission are investigating Musk’s tweet and why such a disclosure was made via social media rather than in a filing. Tesla and the SEC both declined to comment. — BLOOMBERG

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3. Tesla has reportedly been having production issues at its New York solar factory. The company produces solar roof tiles, in collaboration with Panasonic, in Buffalo, New York. However, assembly line and design issues have delayed the factory’s production, which has led Panasonic to look for other buyers of the components it had built to sell to Tesla and rattled state officials sold on the promise of economic development in the area in exchange for $750 million in state subsidies. The plant is producing a solar roof, which is designed to look like a normal roof while generating electricity. — REUTERS

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4. Chinese venture capital fund Nio Capital says only one percent of Chinese electric car startups will survive. “It’s a very complicated system that needs abundant investments and a large group of people to be able to build a car from scratch,” Nio Capital Managing Partner Ian Zhu told Bloomberg. “Therefore, the survival rate of all these EV startups will be very low.” The venture fund is looking to raise $1.5 billion for a Chinese fund to invest in joint projects between auto startups and traditional automakers. Nio Capital is sponsored by the Chinese automotive company of the same name that hopes to compete with Tesla in the market. However, the fund is looking beyond its relationship with Nio Auto and looking to make inroads with other ventures in the auto space. The firm is closing in on raising its offshore fundraising of about $500 million, which is include funds from BP. — BLOOMBERG

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5. Canadian EV marker Electra Meccanica is filing for a $10 million public offering. The company will list on NASDAQ, with shares being sold under the tickers "SOLO" (for common shares) and "SOLOW" (for warrants). The ticker references the vehicle it produces, the “Solo,” which is a single seat, three-wheeled electric car with a top speed of 82 miles per hour and a range of about 100 miles. Since it is three-wheeled, in most places it is not considered a car and does not have to comply with various legislation that make the vehicle incredibly small and light. — CNN

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6. Lime is expanding discounts for low-income riders. Riders who can prove eligibility or participation in any state or federally-run assistance program will now be eligible for Lime Access, which provides riders with discounts of up to 50 percent on electric bike and scooter rides and up to 95 percent Lime pedal bike rides. In order to qualify, riders must email Lime their personal info, a copy of a valid government ID and proof of low income status. Since launching Lime Access, competitor Bird has also started a similar program. — THE VERGE

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7. Apple has filed a patent for self-driving car windshields. The patent calls for windshields that would incorporate augmented reality. — MASHABLE

8. An error on a Uber security feature is kicking some transgender drivers off the platform. The error is tied to Microsoft Cognitive Services. — CNBC

9. Chinese EV startup GYON has launched a partnership with Gaffoglio Family Metalcrafters. The companies will build a prototype for a new vehicle. — AUTO NEWS

10. Business Insider analyzed Bird’s entrance strategy into new markets. The publication says it follows the expansion strategy of ride-hailing companies. — BI

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This newsletter was written and curated by Johan Moreno. Johan is based out of Los Angeles, CA and has covered technology and automotive extensively for a variety of publications, including The Orange County Register. Follow him on Twitter @dudejohan

Editing team: Lon Harris (editor-in-chief at Inside.com, game-master at Screen Junkies), Krystle Vermes (Breaking news editor at Inside, B2B marketing news reporter, host of the "All Day Paranormal" podcast), and Susmita Baral (editor at Inside, recent bylines in NatGeo, Teen Vogue, and Quartz. Runs the biggest mac and cheese account on Instagram).

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