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Inside Automotive (Sep 4th, 2019)

1. Porsche has officially revealed details about the automaker’s Taycan electric vehicle. The vehicle will be offered in two variants: the Taycan Turbo and the Taycan Turbo S that will both be capable of going 0 to 62 miles per hour in less than three seconds. The automaker did not provide EPA-estimated range targets for the vehicle, although both variants are expected to have about 280 to 300 miles of range on a full charge. The vehicle’s top speed is 161.5 miles per hour and supports a 270 kWh charge rate. At that charge rate, the vehicles can be charged from 5 percent to 80 percent in about 23 minutes. But those looking for a bargain be aware: the Turbo starts at $150,900, while the Turbo S starts at $185,000. The vehicle is due on sale next year. — JALOPNIK

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2. Some Tesla Model 3 vehicle deliveries in the U.S. have reportedly been delayed to meet demand overseas. As the automaker pushes to meet delivery targets for the end of Q3, according to several posts in Tesla Motors Club, Tesla is prioritizing delivery of many Model 3 vehicles to international markets, including China. One user on the forum said they received an email from an owner advisor saying the automaker was “producing and shipping a ton of Model 3s off to China,” likely in a move to meet delivery targets. According to a forum-curated spreadsheet of recent Model 3 orders, many U.S.-based orders placed within the month of August have yet to be assigned a VIN and have yet to receive a delivery. — TESLA MOTORS CLUB

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3. In a recent survey from Autolist, 45 percent of buyers preferred the Tesla Model S to the Porsche Taycan. The publication asked 1,500 current car shoppers about which one of the electric vehicles they preferred, with 45 percent choosing the Model S, 33 percent selecting the Taycan and 22 percent saying they were unsure. The top reasons why consumers chose the Model S over the Taycan included Tesla’s brand reputation, Tesla’s Supercharging network and the performance of the Model S. — AUTOLIST

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4. Some Tesla owners in China are protesting against a recent tax break for new Tesla purchases in the country, which has reduced prices by about 10 percent. As documented by @JayinShanghai, owners gathered at a service and experience center in Shanghai to protest the move in hopes that the automaker would reimburse them for the amount of the tax break. Jay did share a video of the “protest,” which comprised of a group of Tesla owners standing around in a circle, not causing much commotion. — @JAYINSHANGHAI/TWITTER

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5. A preliminary report from the National Transportation Safety Board indicated a Tesla Model S was engaged on Autopilot when it crashed into a fire truck last year. The accident happened on Interstate 405 in Culver City, California, on January 14, 2018. The 2014 model year vehicle had Autopilot engaged for nearly 14 minutes when it struck a fire truck that was stopped on the freeway. The driver was not injured in the crash, nor was anyone on the fire truck. The investigation did report that the Autopilot system presented visual alerts about the hands-off operation of the Autopilot system and did present a first-level auditory warning. — TECHCRUNCH

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6. Chinese ride-hailing company Didi has plans to start picking up passengers in self-driving vehicles in an area of Shanghai. The company will initially give Didi riders in the city’s Jiading district the option to be picked up by a self-driving car and has plans for the vehicles to venture outside of China by 2021. The rides will be free of charge and will include a back-up safety driver. The vehicles will be equipped with Level 4 autonomous features, with more than 30 different types of car models offered in the pilot. — REUTERS

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7. Tesla CEO Elon Musk signaled Tesla’s insurance offering may have some deep integration with the automaker’s app. One Twitter user, @tesla_truth, suggested to Musk that the automaker should allow customers to display their insurance cards and file claims, along with other features, all directly within Tesla’s app. Musk responded with, “Definitely.” — @TESLA_TRUTH/TWITTER

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8. Fiat is ending production of the 500 and 500e in North America, in an initiative to remove the vehicle from the U.S. market. The 500 was the vehicle that marked Fiat’s re-emergence into the U.S. market, but consumer preferences have shifted toward larger trucks and SUVs in the region. As a result, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles will be ending production of the vehicle at its Toluca, Mexico plant, with existing inventory being sold into next year. Fiat will continue to sell larger, crossover-style sedans in the U.S. — AUTO NEWS

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9. One interesting observation made by @ShortingIsFun on Twitter - Tesla CFO Deepak Ahuja has resurfaced as a senior advisor at the Capricorn Investment Group. This surprised some on Twitter, particularly members of the $TESLAQ community, as Ahuja’s departure from Tesla was labeled as a “retirement” when he left the automaker earlier this year. It is unclear the extent of Ahuja’s responsibilities at Capricorn, as he does not appear on the company’s staff page on its website. — @SHORTINGISFUN/TWITTER

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10. Someone on the /r/teslamotors subreddit shared pictures of the progress being made on the Shanghai Gigafactory. The pictures show a new stamping press and additional equipment, as the automaker prepares to begin building vehicles inside the factory by the end of the year. As one Redditor said, “The speed of construction of this facility is mindblowing.” — /R/TESLAMOTORS/REDDIT

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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 Forbes and The Orange County Register. Follow him on Twitter @dudejohan

Editor: David Stegon (senior editor at Inside, whose reporting experience includes cryptocurrency and technology).

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