AutoGuide News Blog
The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
GM is adding roughly 400 jobs to its suburban campus in Pontiac, a suburb of Detroit, in an effort to speed development in the next phase of its propulsion development.
When it comes to the auto industry, oil isn’t the only thing imported from foreign countries and subject to supply issues and price spikes. The same is true of the rubber in your car’s tires, though a solution could lie in a simple, resilient weed that grows freely across the American southwest.
Self-driving cars aren’t new, but if electric vehicles’ slow adoption rates among U.S. consumers are any measure of new technology acceptance then autonomous cars can’t be close at hand, or can they?
According to a speech given by Larry Burns, former General Motors research and development head, we can expect such technology by 2020. Unless you’ve been ignoring auto news, that sentence might seem strange. We already have cars that drive themselves, even to Taco Bell drive-through windows, courtesy of Google.
Lamborghinis, Ferraris, Maseratis, they all have distinct exhaust notes that turn heads from Hoboken, New Jersey to Hollywood, California. They still ain’t got nothing on the rare and raspy resonation that marks an Acura NSX.
Where an ultra-expensive Italian car says status, the NSX spits true tuner taste— especially because they aren’t in production. That’s why our ears perk up whenever news surfaces about the highly anticipated next generation of the old legend.
The latest? On Monday, Acura announced at the North American International Auto Show that they plan to do the research, development and manufacturing for the new NSX at their Marysville, Ohio facility.
“Honda associates are up to the challenge of producing the new NSX for global customers with a high degree of craftsmanship,” said Hidenobu Iwata, head of Honda’s North American manufacturing operations and president of Honda of America Mfg., Inc. in a press release. ”Honda associates in Ohio have been building high-quality Honda and Acura vehicles for nearly 30 years, so this news in many ways is a culmination of their determined efforts.”
This is big news, considering the previous NSX was made entirely in Japan and then exported.
Hiroshi Takemura, president of Honda R&D Americas agreed, saying that the company has a rich history of creating cars in the U.S. and that the decision to build the new NSX in Ohio demonstrates the maturity and ability of Acura’s American operation.
For the most part, Acura is keeping mum on tech specs, though we do know that the car will, again, feature a mid-mounted V6, lightweight chassis and Acura’s Super Handling All Wheel Drive system. We also know that the car will be available within three years time.
Statistics gathered by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reveal that 700 of 7,000 traffic related fatalities in 2008 were caused by drivers that failed to stop at red traffic lights. What’s more, the red light offenders and the victims involved in the accident (whether passengers, pedestrians, or the driver of the other vehicle) share a near equal, 50/50, chance of fatality.
Determined to eliminate this danger, researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology developed an algorithm used to predict the likelihood of an oncoming vehicle of running a red traffic light. According to MIT’s aeronautics and astronautics professor, Jonathan How, the growing multitude of active safety advanced telematics systems could benefit from algorithms that prevent drivers from getting into accidents.
The algorithm was developed by Georges Aoude, a former student of How, and applies parameters that can rate a vehicle’s rate of deceleration and distance from the traffic light at intersections to determine whether a vehicle is likely to run the light. If this algorithm becomes widely accepted by multiple automakers, calculated data could be communicated from vehicle-to-vehicle. Professor How explains, “If you had some type of heads-up display for the driver, it might be something where the algorithms are analyzing and saying, ‘We’re concerned.’ Even though your light might be green, it may recommend you not go, because there are people behaving badly that you may not be aware of.”
A field test for the algorithm was conducted at an intersection in Virginia, and from the recorded results of 15,000 approaching vehicles, Georges Aoude’s algorithm achieved a hit rate of 85 percent. The determination of a red light offender is calculated a couple of seconds before the vehicle reaches the intersection, which researchers believed are sufficient to allow other drivers to react.
The research team is also developing the generation of a recommended response for the driver in the event that danger in the intersection is sensed. What’s more, there are plans to tweak the algorithm for the application of air traffic control.
[Source: New York Times]
In an official press release, the Renault-Nissan Alliance stated that the office will “build staff organically, to focus on specific projects and business developments as they emerge.”
The office is part of the automaker’s $5.4 billion commitment to sustainable transportation and will play an integral role in vehicle Information Technology research, including graphic user interface displays, in-car connectivity features already employed on the Nissan LEAF EV (shown above) as well as Smart Grid R&D.
Renault-Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn, during a speech at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research (SIEPR), said that “the [Renault-Nissan] Alliance is at the vanguard of the auto industry’s shift to sustainable transportation. Having a greater footprint in one of the world’s headquarters for clean tech research will extend our lead further.”
According to the Patent Board, General Motors is recognized as the top innovator among 182 companies, based on results from its quarterly released automotive and industry scorecard.
The board examines intellectual property performance spanning some 17 different industries and picks a leader in each one, based on categories such as the number of patents, influence and impact on the industry, along with science strength and technology.
The announcement comes on the heels of news that GM recently received more patents for clean energy technology last year than any other organization, based on findings from the Clean Energy Patent Growth Index. In fact, during the last decade, GM has increased the number of its patent filings six-fold.
According to Alan Taub, GM’s vice president of Research & Development, the increase in the number of patents is due to the fact that, “our engineers are developing advanced technologies that increase fuel efficiency and ensure safety while maintaining the excitement of personal mobility.”