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While Tesla is pushing production of the Cybertruck to 2023, its main competitor has begun mass production of electric pickups. The first Rivian R1T rolled off the assembly line

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In the United States, the serial production of Rivian electric vehicles has finally begun: the startup has been demonstrating engineering samples of its electric pickup and SUV for a very long time, and now things have finally moved. In the United States, Rivian has long been called Tesla’s main local competitor, but due to the fact that the company was very delayed with the release of its electric vehicles, it often became the object of jokes, including from Tesla. So, a couple of weeks ago, Elon Musk joked on Twitter about the upcoming first public offering (IPO). Then the head of Tesla wrote that Rivain should have released at least one production car for every billion of capitalization before entering the stock market. And now it turns out that Rivian already has a serial electric pickup, while Tesla does not, and will not be until 2023.

Rivian originally planned to release the R1T in 2020, but was forced to push back those plans due to difficulties in refitting the plant it had bought from Mitsubishi. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated these problems, and the release of R1T has been moved again from July to September. And now the company has finally begun to mass produce its electric vehicles. And it did this not only before Tesla, but also Ford and General Motors. True, the start of mass production does not mean that the first buyers will immediately receive the ordered cars: R1T deliveries are scheduled for January 2022.

R1T in the Launch Edition version (it means the maximum of options) is estimated at 73,000 dollars. The declared cruising range is just over 500 km. The car is all-wheel drive, the previously announced dynamics is about 3 seconds to 100 km / h.

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Electric Cars

Tesla’s autopilot makes drivers inattentive. MIT study results published

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The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has conducted a new study to find out if drivers become inattentive when using partially automated driving systems.

The basic premise of the study is that the safety impact of systems such as autopilot is unknown until there is evidence of how visual behavior of drivers changes when automation is used. The researchers studied the direction and duration of the gaze of the drivers.

The researchers found that drivers stared anywhere but at the road longer with the autopilot active than when it was inactive. The team also found that the frequency of distraction from the road was lower when using autopilot than when driving manually.

Most often and for the longest time, drivers look down or to the center console, while in 22% of cases this lasts more than 2 seconds. The researchers concluded that visual behaviors change with and without autopilot. When autopilot was engaged, drivers looked less at the road and paid more attention to non-driving areas.

Yesterday it became known about another fatal accident involving a Tesla Model 3 car, which was moving in autopilot mode.

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Electric Cars

Chevrolet Bolt EV battery release resumed

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General Motors (GM) has outlined a comprehensive plan of action to address the Chevy Bolt EV problem that has caused it to cease production and recall more than 73,000 vehicles.

LG’s battery factories in Holland and Hazel Park, Michigan have resumed production. Moreover, LG is expanding production to increase the supply of GM cells. New battery modules will begin shipping to dealers in mid-October.

The reason for the fires, which GM reads 10, is called a rare combination of two manufacturing defects in one cell.

LG is said to have implemented new manufacturing processes and, with GM, has revised and improved its quality control programs. These processes are planned to be implemented in all enterprises that will supply GM cells.

In the meantime, GM will inform owners of Chevy Bolt EVs and EUVs that are most likely to be defective about the availability of modules for replacement. New batteries will be covered by an extended warranty of 8 years or 160,000 km (whichever comes first).

In about 60 days, GM will begin releasing new advanced diagnostic software. It will be designed to detect certain deviations that could indicate battery damage in Bolt and EUV electric vehicles by monitoring its performance. The software will notify users of any detected anomalies and allow prioritizing replacement of damaged battery modules. GM hopes that over time, the diagnostic software will allow it to return to 100% charging (currently the maximum charge level is limited to reduce the risk of fire). The installation of the new software, which will be provided to all Bolt EV and EUV owners, is the responsibility of the dealers.

For now, GM recommends setting the charge limit to 90%. You can do this by your dealer or by following the instructions at chevy.com/boltevrecall. It is recommended to charge the car more often and, if possible, avoid discharging below the level corresponding to approximately 110 km. It is recommended to park the car outside the garage immediately after charging, and do not leave the car charging indoors overnight.

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Electric Cars

NTSB considers Tesla’s approach to self-driving traffic “irresponsible and misleading”

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Tesla is about to make the beta version of Full Self-Driving (FSD) software available to a wide range of Tesla electric vehicle owners.

This step was preceded by testing with a small group of users. However, Tesla’s actions are being challenged by US regulators.

The U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) last month announced an investigation to assess the operation of the Tesla Autopilot feature and its possible link to 11 road accidents involving Tesla electric vehicles and ambulances and rescuers.

The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) is also putting pressure on Tesla. This agency has already investigated accidents involving Tesla electric vehicles. It is likely this experience allows the NTSB to characterize Tesla’s approach to self-driving as “irresponsible and misleading.”

In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, NTSB chief Jennifer Homendy said Tesla should delay release until security flaws are addressed.

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