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https://finance.yahoo.com/news/heads-general-motors-something-big-113200616.html

  • Having watched GM for years, I think this is likely to be a significant event. I think GM has some big news to announce -- such as how and when it will begin to bring autonomous vehicles to market -- in much more detail than it has so far.
  • Barra has said that GM will begin rolling out its self-driving vehicles in "quarters, not years." It seems pretty clear that those first self-driving Bolts will be put into ride-hailing service in U.S. cities, starting in San Francisco. It also seems clear that GM is close to being ready to mass-produce those cars.
  • But interestingly, Barra noted that GM is working on mapping other cities, and said, "It will be 6 months or less to get ready to launch in other cities."
 

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https://finance.yahoo.com/news/heads-general-motors-something-big-113200616.html

  • Having watched GM for years, I think this is likely to be a significant event. I think GM has some big news to announce -- such as how and when it will begin to bring autonomous vehicles to market -- in much more detail than it has so far.
  • Barra has said that GM will begin rolling out its self-driving vehicles in "quarters, not years." It seems pretty clear that those first self-driving Bolts will be put into ride-hailing service in U.S. cities, starting in San Francisco. It also seems clear that GM is close to being ready to mass-produce those cars.
  • But interestingly, Barra noted that GM is working on mapping other cities, and said, "It will be 6 months or less to get ready to launch in other cities."
Hey.. TP, I just thought of something that no one has brought up before.

If Waymo and GM are perfecting SDCs and they want to bring them to market, that's fine, but why don't they just put the cars in the dealerships and market them as something people can purchase rather than go off on this tangent of starting a taxi business? (With all the responsibilities and headaches involved).

I mean, I know plenty of people who are in the market to buy a new car and if they had the option to buy a SDC they totally would so that when they drive to work they can just kick back.

Why would GM and Google not just sell the SDCs to people like any other new car for sale? Why do they have to go and get into the taxi biz?

That's like saying there's a carpenter who makes amazing furniture but now he doesn't just want to sell his furniture, he wants to open a chain of restaurants and put all his furniture in there. So not only is he using his product, but now he has to go and learn a whole completely different business.

Seems a little strange now that I think about it like that. I mean obvious snarky reasons like ego come to mind of course, but in all seriousness: if Google and GM have created a product (SDCs) why not just sell that product instead of going into a totally new biz- the taxi biz?

Legit question.

UPDATE, 20 minutes later:

Stop the presses! I answered my own question. I figured out why.

The software is probably constantly updating (kinda like the OS on an iPhone) so to do that they NEED cars on the road ASAP. And why not "earn while you learn"

Ideally if a ton of people beat down a path to their local GM dealer and demanded to buy an SDC that would be great, but going into the taxi biz is a much faster way to get boots on the ground. Or, in this case, tires on the ground.

They're not really trying to put Uber out of business. They just need the driving experience and data collecting.

Your bold statements of "the end of uber" are just a bonus.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hey.. TP, I just thought of something that no one has brought up before.

If Waymo and GM are perfecting SDCs and they want to bring them to market, that's fine, but why don't they just put the cars in the dealerships and market them as something people can purchase rather than go off on this tangent of starting a taxi business? (With all the responsibilities and headaches involved).

I mean, I know plenty of people who are in the market to buy a new car and if they had the option to buy a SDC they totally would so that when they drive to work they can just kick back.

Why would GM and Google not just sell the SDCs to people like any other new car for sale? Why do they have to go and get into the taxi biz?

That's like saying there's a carpenter who makes amazing furniture but now he doesn't just want to sell his furniture, he wants to open a chain of restaurants and put all his furniture in there. So not only is he using his product, but now he has to go and learn a whole completely different business.

Seems a little strange now that I think about it like that. I mean obvious snarky reasons like ego come to mind of course, but in all seriousness: if Google and GM have created a product (SDCs) why not just sell that product instead of going into a totally new biz- the taxi biz?

Legit question.

UPDATE, 20 minutes later:

Stop the presses! I answered my own question. I figured out why.

The software is probably constantly updating (kinda like the OS on an iPhone) so to do that they NEED cars on the road ASAP. And why not "earn while you learn"

Ideally if a ton of people beat down a path to their local GM dealer and demanded to buy an SDC that would be great, but going into the taxi biz is a much faster way to get boots on the ground. Or, in this case, tires on the ground.

They're not really trying to put Uber out of business. They just need the driving experience and data collecting.

Your bold statements of "the end of uber" are just a bonus.
Because everyone in the car business understands what Bob Lutz said: "the era of the automobile is over." Same reason the largest car dealership in America, Auto Nation, signed a deal with Waymo to service and maintain their SDC's, selling cars to individuals will no longer be an option. Watch the video if you want to understand what's going to happen, because everything Lutz says in this interview is and will happen.

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/07/for...ob-lutz-self-driving-cars-will-take-over.html

GM and Google understand that most people won't own cars. It will be far cheaper, safer and more comfortable to subscribe to a GM or Waymo self driving taxi service for all your transportation needs than to own your own car.

Instead of paying 50k for a car you only use 4 percent of the time, you'll have a self driving taxi available within minutes. So the cost of the car is shared by 50 other people.
 

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Because everyone in the car business understands what Bob Lutz said: "the era of the automobile is over." Same reason the largest car dealership in America, Auto Nation, signed a deal with Waymo to service and maintain their SDC's, selling cars to individuals will no longer be an option. Watch the video if you want to understand what's going to happen, because everything Lutz says in this interview is and will happen.

https://www.cnbc.com/2017/11/07/for...ob-lutz-self-driving-cars-will-take-over.html

GM and Google understand that most people won't own cars. It will be far cheaper, safer and more comfortable to subscribe to a GM or Waymo self driving taxi service for all your transportation needs than to own your own car.

Instead of paying 50k for a car you only use 4 percent of the time, you'll have a self driving taxi available within minutes. So the cost of the car is shared by 50 other people.
That's the thing, though... you wanna build an SDC that will give people the option to have that feature in a new car, ok fine. You wanna use those cars to start your own taxi biz- it's a tough biz but hey you wanna take a crack at it, ok fine.

But to expect that the very fabric of our society (especially here in the United States) will change from ownership to a form of communism in terms of transportation... that's where I think you and esp this Bob Lutz guy, are dead wrong.

And as Monica said: "I can't convince you of that- we just have to wait for it to unfold."

Besides, you went on record as saying how red states like Arizona where there are "less commies" are more welcoming to SDC technology. But your ultimate end Game is essentially communism. Ironic, no?
 

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The era of the automobile is over. Hmmm

Bob Lutz, whoTF is he?
He is an idiot dinosaur (85 years old) "businessman" that had few high management positions in the American car industry. He used to be head of Chrysler Corporation's Global Product Development between 1992 and 1998, and everybody knows how big of failure Chrysler was at that time. Here is a testimony about those times, from an "auto design engineer. The major Japanese car company I work for doesn't consider Dodge/Chrysler/Jeep a competitor when it comes to design. Worked for a major Japanese auto designer you all are familiar with.

We used to an "event" where we took a vehicle apart, piece by piece. Every single piece. Inspecting, weighing, measuring, and comparing them to our parts. We did this for every design model and with every competitor.

Never once was any Chrysler vehicle mentioned. Not even in comparison documents. It was the ultimate disrespect - they weren't even considered a competitor. Not even for some portion of their vehicles.

I saw a lot of different cars broken down and close up. I have a lot of good things to say about competitors but Chrysler/Dodge/Jeep is not one of them."

Bob Lutz thinks is big deal, but his Wikipedia page states - "Lutz has expressed skepticism on the issue of global warming." more precisely - "global warming "is a total crock of sh*t." - OOOOOH BOY!!!!

After his Chrysler escapade, he went to GM and kept presenting himself as - "It just means that I was focused during my whole career on creating great products that would make people happy as opposed to seeing the automobile business merely as a vehicle to make money."

Problem is "The fact that the bean-counters seem to have won out over the quality control and design factions at GM puts me in mind of a book review I did in 2011 on former GM vice-chair Bob Lutz's Car Guys Versus Bean Counters: The Battle for the Soul of American Business. In it, Lutz wisecracks his way through the 1960s design- and technology-led glory days at GM to the late-1970s takeover by gangs of MBA's. Executives, once largely developed from engineering, began emerging from finance. The results ranged from the sobering (managers signing off on inferior products because customers "had no choice") to the hilarious (Cadillac ashtrays that wouldn't open because of corporate mandates that they be designed to function at -40°F). It's pretty easy to imagine Car Guy Lutz removing his mirrored shades and shouting to the cowering line manager, "Well, customers in North Dakota will be happy. Too bad nobody else will!"

Simply, a car business idiot!

Edit - I find very interesting this review on Bob Lutz book "Icons and idiots" - "I run the risk here of reviewing the book that Lutz did not write, but it must be said that Lutz sidesteps the economic forces that have ravaged the industrial labor market since the 1980s. He writes great anecdotes about character-building, which is to be expected of his generation, but he barely acknowledges the savage attacks on the auto workers' standard of living."

"Rather, Lutz deftly avoids some of these unpleasant realities in favor of entertaining gossip and lamentations that leadership is in short supply. But it's hard to see how "leadership" alone will restore the purchasing power that even Henry Ford admitted was necessary for a strong economy.
That purchasing power has been offshored to cheap-labor countries like China and Indonesia.

It has been well documented that, since China joined the WTO over 10 years ago, America has lost over 50,000 factories to offshoring. Those jobs now pay a fraction of what they used to pay American workers, and the difference has undoubtedly been absorbed into the salaries and bonuses of those in the C-suites of America. The purchasing power of the public has been destroyed as a result, and no amount of "charisma" or "leadership" is going to paper over the fact that a middle-class lifestyle has been shipped out of reach. Those manufacturing jobs will never return unless workers in America agree to work for the same slave wages that the Chinese workers get at factories like Foxconn, which imposes working conditions so degrading that they have had to build "suicide nets" around the workers' dorms to keep them from committing suicide (a fact revealed to the world after the death of Steve Jobs)."

Edit 2 - And also this - Bob Lutz's Double Talk on Apple Car and Volkswagen Emissions Cheating
 

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Why would GM and Google not just sell the SDCs to people like any other new car for sale? Why do they have to go and get into the taxi biz?
Besides what you pointed out, its' about publicity and proof of concept. Not many people will go out and buy a SDC that is unknown.

Soon they'll claim 20 Million miles driven with SDC and zero at fault accidents! (rideshare is the only way to expedite those miles).

And Google will be able to 3d map the entire world with their fleet at the same time. Cars are now more about the software than the hardware.

It's pretty easy to imagine Car Guy Lutz removing his mirrored shades and shouting to the cowering line manager, "Well, customers in North Dakota will be happy. Too bad nobody else will!"
Many a days have been spent being unable to roll down my windows because they've been frozen shut! :)
 

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Hey.. TP, I just thought of something that no one has brought up before.

If Waymo and GM are perfecting SDCs and they want to bring them to market, that's fine, but why don't they just put the cars in the dealerships and market them as something people can purchase rather than go off on this tangent of starting a taxi business? (With all the responsibilities and headaches involved).

I mean, I know plenty of people who are in the market to buy a new car and if they had the option to buy a SDC they totally would so that when they drive to work they can just kick back.

Why would GM and Google not just sell the SDCs to people like any other new car for sale? Why do they have to go and get into the taxi biz?

That's like saying there's a carpenter who makes amazing furniture but now he doesn't just want to sell his furniture, he wants to open a chain of restaurants and put all his furniture in there. So not only is he using his product, but now he has to go and learn a whole completely different business.

Seems a little strange now that I think about it like that. I mean obvious snarky reasons like ego come to mind of course, but in all seriousness: if Google and GM have created a product (SDCs) why not just sell that product instead of going into a totally new biz- the taxi biz?

Legit question.

UPDATE, 20 minutes later:

Stop the presses! I answered my own question. I figured out why.

The software is probably constantly updating (kinda like the OS on an iPhone) so to do that they NEED cars on the road ASAP. And why not "earn while you learn"

Ideally if a ton of people beat down a path to their local GM dealer and demanded to buy an SDC that would be great, but going into the taxi biz is a much faster way to get boots on the ground. Or, in this case, tires on the ground.

They're not really trying to put Uber out of business. They just need the driving experience and data collecting.

Your bold statements of "the end of uber" are just a bonus.
Because it's an estimated $14T market worldwide. Also because they can only produce so many and TNCing is the low hanging fruit.

GM owns $500M of Lyft so they won't be starting from the ground floor. Waymo already has a TNC app through Google and Waze. Chances are they won't be maintaining the fleet, the manufacturers will.

The car ownership model won't die, but it's going to drop dramatically in the next five years. It just won't make economic sense for people to own cars. They are a money pit for most people.
 
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