Inside Transportation - December 12th, 2019

Inside Transportation (Dec 12th, 2019)

EPA releases estimated range for Porsche Taycan Turbo / Spin employees have unionized / TBT: Ford, Chevrolet EV pickup trucks

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1. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) gave the Porsche Taycan Turbo an estimated range rating of 201 miles. This is the first variant of the Taycan to receive a range rating from the agency and, notably, falls behind one of its most fierce competitors on the market: the Tesla Model S. Despite some of its potential range limitations, Porsche said it has taken 30,000 deposits for the Taycan vehicle lineup in Europe. The automaker plans to deliver 20,000 vehicles next year. — TECHCRUNCH

2. Maintenance employees of Ford-owned electric scooter company Spin have unionized. Employees responsible for charging, repairing, collecting and distributing scooters have unionized under the San Francisco chapter of the Teamsters, with about 40 employees joining the union. The Teamsters will also attempt to unionize scooter maintenance workers for other companies, like Lime and Bird. Unlike other “gig economy” companies that have tried to prevent their employees from unionizing, Ford-owned subsidiaries have a history of union representation. Chariot, a now-defunct bus service owned by Ford, also had employees join the Teamsters. — THE INFORMATION

3. Throwback Thursday: Ford Ranger EV and Chevrolet S-10 EV

Think Rivian and Tesla will be the first pair of automakers releasing electrified trucks?

Think again. YouTuber Tinkering Thomas discussed a pair of electric pickup trucks released by Ford and Chevrolet in the late ‘90s.

The automakers were competing against one another with the pair of pick-up trucks, both announced around the same time in 1997. The Ford Ranger EV retailed for $53,000, could go from zero to 50 miles per hour in 10.3 seconds, had a top speed of about 75 miles and a range of about 74 miles. The Chevrolet S-10 EV pickup retailed for $33,305, had a top speed of 72 miles per hour, a range of about 72 miles and could go 0 to 50 miles per hour in 10.9 seconds.

Watch the full video here about the two vehicles, which were ultimately pulled off the market.

4. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) released a full report on the collision that occurred last year between a self-driving Uber vehicle and a pedestrian that occurred in Arizona. Among the additional details uncovered: a toxicology test showed victim Elaine Herzberg, the pedestrian who died in the incident, had methamphetamine and marijuana in her system at the time. However, the report ultimately found the crash was tied to an "inadequate safety culture" at Uber's Advanced Technologies Group, with the NTSB recommending the need for safety risk management requirements for companies testing automated vehicles on public roads. You can read the full report here. — MASS LIVE

5. Tesla has plans to produce up to 500,000 vehicles per year from its upcoming factory in the Berlin, Germany area. The figure was reported by the Bild newspaper, which said the facility will span 420 soccer pitches, although Tesla declined to comment on the report. Tesla will reportedly invest up to $4.41 billion on the facility, which will create about 10,000 jobs in the process. Construction is set to begin in 2020. — REUTERS

6. In a vague Medium post, Cruise president Dan Ammann said it’s time to “move beyond the car.” Ammann criticized the flaws of personal vehicle ownership: pollution, congestion, traffic-related deaths and underutilization, an interesting set of comments from someone who previously led one of the world’s largest automakers. He said GM’s self-driving unit would be working on solutions that are “superior to the status quo in every way,” but did not specify what those solutions would be, only saying there is “more to come.” — CRUISE/MEDIUM

7. The Tesla Cybertruck may have a range of 620 miles, according to a picture published by MotorTrend. The mileage was spotted by @CybertruckTesla on Twitter on the “Dual Motor” version prototype of the truck. However, some on Twitter speculated whether it was actually “620 kilometers,” instead of miles. Either way, it would be good news for potential buyers, considering it would add about 85 miles of range to the vehicle from what was previously expected. — @CYBERTRUCKTESLA/TWITTER

8. Enterprise Holdings has named Chrissy Taylor as the company’s new CEO. Taylor, the granddaughter of the company’s founder Jack Taylor, will assume the new role on January 1. Taylor previously served as the rental car giant’s chief operating officer and will replace Pam Nicholson, who has been the company’s CEO since 2013. Enterprise manages a fleet of about two million vehicles globally and operates multiple brands, including Enterprise Rent-A-Car, National Rental Car, Alamo Rent-A-Car and Enterprise Fleet Management. — FORTUNE

9. Tesla CEO Elon Musk is suggesting the automaker may offer a paid upgrade for customers to add heated rear seats. One Twitter user, @andrewMcarney, asked Musk if there was a chance that customers could have a paid over-the-air update that would activate the rear heated seats on Standard Range Plus models, to which Musk said “Sure.” Previously, this feature was only available to those who opted to upgrade to the “Premium Interior” package. — @ANDREWMCARNEY/TWITTER

10. Ferrari CEO Louis Camilleri does not expect the company to release an electric vehicle until after 2025. Camilleri said the company will stick to gasoline-hybrid vehicle technology until then, citing challenges in vehicle recharging as a considerable challenge. The ultra-luxury automaker does plan to make 60 percent of its vehicles gasoline-hybrids by 2022, while also considering other alternative fuels, like hydrogen and bio-fuels. —  REUTERS

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

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