Nevada Lawmakers Approve $335M Deal for Faraday Future Plant

Nevada lawmakers have approved a $335-million incentive package to help ensure Faraday Future builds its plant in Las Vegas.

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80 MPH Nevada Speed Limit Starts in October

Nevada is the latest state to approve a speed limit increase.

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Nevada Issues Licenses for Self-Driving Trucks

This week Daimler gained the first license to operate self-driving trucks in Nevada.

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Top 10 States With the Rudest Drivers

Aggressive maneuvering, horns blaring, center-most fingers locked in their upright positions, these are but a few hallmarks of ill-mannered motoring. Surly, rushed or otherwise incompetent drivers cause mayhem on America’s country roads and urban thoroughfares.

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Tesla Receives $1.3 Billion Tax Break From Nevada

The world’s largest lithium-ion battery factory just received a massive tax break.

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Tesla to Build Gigafactory in Nevada

The Tesla Gigafactory will be built in. . . the state of Nevada.

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MINI Take the States: Wrap Up

I tagged along for a two legs of MINI Takes the States, an epic cross-country road rally that’s put on by the company. I participated in just two sections of this continent-spanning trip, but that was still enough for me to experience four Midwestern states and some 700 miles of America. But there’s much more to than this event than just the sliver I experienced.

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Idaho, Wyoming Officially Add 80 MPH Speed Limit

As expected, Idaho and Wyoming officially adopted an 80 MPH speed limit on certain highways.

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70 MPH Speed Limit in Illinois Opposed by AAA

AAA is urging Illinois legislators not to raise the speed limit from 65 to 70 mph on state roadways.

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Nevada Might Be Next With 85 MPH Speed Limit

Travel times might be reduced soon in parts of Nevada if a new bill proposing an 85 mph speed limit becomes law.

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First Supplier Approved to Test Autonomous Vehicles in Nevada

Like it or not,  self-driving cars are the future of personal transportation. A diverse group of global companies ranging from Volvo to Google are feverishly developing systems to enable autonomous autos.

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Tesla Supercharger Network Launched for Fast Charging

Tesla just launched its network of “Superchargers,” speeding up one of the most important aspects of its EVs, but it might not be what you think. 

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Autonomous Car Bill Passed by California Senate

Google’s self-driving car is pretty ugly with its roof-mounted unit that allows for  autonomous driving, but that isn’t stopping it from getting attention from a second state senate.

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Semi-Autonomous Car Could Be Licensed By Month's End - Video
It was only December of last year when Google earned patents for autonomous vehicles. Now, the technology continues to rapidly move ahead as automotive supplier Continental has commenced testing a semi-autonomous vehicle of its own that is more affordable and could be among the first licensed for use on Nevada’s designated public roads by months end.

Nevada is the first state to pass laws regulating driverless vehicles. To qualify for a special state license, engineers at Continental have built and driven a heavily modified Volkswagen Passat with its brake and steering controls removed and replaced with sensors to digitally read and interpret surroundings. According to engineer Ibro Muharemovic, the Passat has logged almost 10,000 miles of autonomous driving and during a more recent trip from Las Vegas, Nevada, to Brimley, Michigan, home of Continental’s development and testing center, more than 90 percent of the journey did not involve the use of hands and feet.

Unlike Google’s ambitions to create a sophisticated fully autonomous vehicle, Continental went along to develop an interim semi-autonomous option that could take over duties during stop-and-go traffic or extended stretches of highway, the least satisfying of driving conditions. However, Continental and Google’s endpoint is identical: to create a solution that will reduce accidents, congestion, and fuel consumption. Continental director of engineering systems and technology Christian Schumacher said, “We still have a long way to go, but the technology is amazing.”

According to Ravi Pandit, CEO of India’s global IT and engineering company KPIT Cummins, “There is a strong business case for an autonomous car that can drop you off or a cab without the expense of a driver.”

Despite the optimism, mass production semiautonomous cars are still a couple years away. The technology exists but the idea raises questions of liability, regulation, and public acceptance. NHTSA will begin a study of autonomous driving in August with a one-year pilot project in Ann Arbor, testing 3,000 cars with the ability to communicate with one another to avoid an accident. What’s more, in an event of a crash, the law has yet to resolve who is reliable or whether the occupants of an autonomous car are legally exempt from bans on mobile devices.

As for passenger anxiety, Ravi Pandit is confident that, “A car can see better than a human can, and the car responds faster.”

Engineer Ibro Muharemovic commented, “I was surprised by how well it worked.” Continental’s Volkswagen Passat is fitted with a stereo camera that can monitor speed-bumps or potholes as far as 220 yards away and adjust steering, braking, and acceleration accordingly. Muharemovic adds, “The driver is always in control and can override the system any time.”

If testing is successful and Continental is qualified for Nevada registration, a special red license plate will be provided to distinguish the driverless car. In the future, production driverless cars would receive a green license plate.

Check out video footage of Continental’s autonomous Volkswagen Passat driving itself below. 

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Nrburgring Clone May Come to Las Vegas

Las Vegas is one of America’s largest tourist attractions, with themed-hotels that ironically replicate landmarks of countries that tourists are probably visiting from. Nonetheless, it’s the one place Americans can all trek to without having to leave the country to experience a diverse amount of cultures, even if they’re not very accurate.

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