Hello Proton! Are you still a player in the global car industry transformation?


 Hello Proton! Are you still a player in the global car industry transformation?

The past week saw a deluge of international news focusing on the evolving automobile industry that is set to change the game plan of car manufacturers.


Those who lag will surely face closure. The news headlines posted by The Star Online read:

Ø Volkswagen to electrify entire range by 2030

Ø GKN to present a refined electric driveline

Ø Audi demonstrates its artificial intelligence

Ø Munich Re enlists Mobileye to navigate driverless car threat

“It is all about electric cars and Artificial Intelligence (AI). This is already a reality, not some science fiction movie,” Gerakan Deputy Speaker Syed Abdul Razak Alsagoff said.

“Again, most unfortunately, I have to raise the continuous saga of China’s Zhejiang Geely Holding Group Co Ltd (Geely)’s buy into Proton.

“It will do well for Proton to not remain mum and worry sick about who heads the company, Malaysian or Chinese, etc. Assure us that you are aware of the evolving technology of cars and have plans to not lose out,” he added.

Read this for context:
https://bukitlanjan.blogspot.my/2017/09/bukit-lanjan-is-proton-waiting-to-see.html



Syed Razak, who is Gerakan’s nominee to contest N.37 Bukit Lanjan in the coming 14th General Election (GE14), said Proton certainly could not just continue operating like it did and assume it would always be bailed out.

The following four news reports certainly show how fast car, technology and AI are developing to transform the automobile market:

"Volkswagen to electrify entire range by 2030

TECH NEWS
Wednesday, 13 Sep 2017
7:00 AM MYT



In November 2016, the group announced its ambition to be the world's biggest electric carmaker by 2025. — AFP Relaxnews
German carmaker Volkswagen doubled down Monday on efforts to clean up its image tarnished by the dieselgate scandal, vowing ahead of the IAA auto industry show to electrify its entire range by 2030.

By the end of next decade, VW vows to offer "at least one electrified version of each of the 300 or so group models", the firm said in a statement.

The Wolfsburg-based group owns a stable of 12 brands ranging from VW, Seat and Skoda to Audi, Bentley and Lamborghini – as well as truck and bus makers MAN and Scania and Ducati motorbikes.

By 2025, the company estimates that up to one in four of its new vehicles -- three million per year – could be purely battery powered.

Mueller was brought in to turn things around after VW admitted in 2015 to manipulating regulatory emissions tests on 11 million cars worldwide.

In November 2016, the group announced its ambition to be the world's biggest electric carmaker by 2025, slashing 30,000 jobs as it frees up cash for investment in research and development into new technologies.

Monday's announcement goes a step further, promising 80 new electric vehicles – 50 of them all-electric and 30 of them hybrids – by the middle of next decade.

And VW says it will invest some €20bil (RM100.5bil) in developing new vehicles, upgrading plants, training its workforce, charging infrastructure and battery technology and production.

But the group has yet to give up completely on the internal combustion engine, highlighting the clean performance of its latest-generation diesels and suggesting future vehicles could be powered by renewable synthetic fuels. — AFP Relaxnews

GKN to present a refined electric driveline

TECH NEWS
Wednesday, 13 Sep 2017
6:00 AM MYT



eTwinsterX will begin appearing in demonstrator vehicles from towards the end of this year. — AFP Relaxnews
It would be easy to take a simplistic view when it comes to how electric vehicles (EVs) can be made more practical, and therefore more popular.

As the limited range they have on a single battery charge is what concerns most potential buyers, all that needs to be achieved to make EVs a practical alternative to internal combustion models is to develop better batteries, right?

In some ways that's true, but battery technology isn't advancing anywhere near as fast as we'd like, so other ways of improving EV range have to be explored too. And that's exactly what GKN Driveline is doing by revealing an all-new electric axle concept this week at the 67th Frankfurt International Motor Show (IAA).

The new eAxle from GKN Driveline is called 'eTwinsterX,' and it's said to offer three big advantages over conventional electric drivelines. To begin with, the design is an integrated coaxial format, which means the electric drive (eDrive) unit is significantly smaller than any existing systems that offer an equivalent power output.

Next up is the industry-leading efficiency of the unit. The eTwinsterX system has a unique two-speed transmission transmitting the drive motor's power, which optimizes gear changes for the greatest possible efficiency, as well as also delivering seamless shifting. Another dynamic advantage of the new eAxle is the fact it incorporates GKN's celebrated 'Twinster' torque vectoring technology, which has notable advantages for the stability, agility and safety of any vehicle utilizing the system.

eTwinsterX will begin appearing in demonstrator vehicles from towards the end of this year. The eDrive system has been designed with production applications very much in mind and live trials will be carried out that will include GKN's extensive winter testing program early in 2018.

It's expected the first eTwinsterX demonstrator vehicles will be in plug-in hybrid versions of existing models. These test mules will demonstrate the advantages of hybrid systems that can be bolted-on to existing models, as well as illustrating the wide range of benefits the system delivers in terms of performance and efficiency. — AFP Relaxnews

Audi demonstrates its artificial intelligence

TECH NEWS
Wednesday, 13 Sep 2017
4:19 PM MYT



The Audi Elaine is an electric SUV with fully automated driving that enables it to function without a driver or passengers on board. — AFP Relaxnews
At the International Motor Show Germany, Audi is presenting three vehicles equipped with a new form of artificial intelligence: the new A8 and the concept cars Elaine and Aicon.

The German carmaker is intent on showcasing Audi AI, its new name for a range of innovative systems that will make vehicles increasingly autonomous, and eventually enable drivers to engage in other activities. Thanks to Audi AI, future models by the ring-logo brand will be "intelligent" and better able to adapt to their passengers than ever before.

These innovations have been highlighted in two new concept cars. The first of these, the Audi Elaine, is an electric SUV with fully automated driving that enables it to function without a driver or passengers on board, and also to autonomously perform certain maneuvers like parking, visiting a carwash or finding a charging station.



The Audi Aicon has no pedals or steering wheel. — AFP Relaxnews
For its part, the Audi Aicon goes even further because it has no pedals or steering wheel. This is Audi's vision of the interior and exterior design of vehicles of the future. The Aicon is also a fully electric concept with a record range of 800km without a charge.

Coming soon to dealerships, the new generation Audi A8 is billed as the first series car with the capacity to take over driving functions in certain traffic conditions (for example on an open road at a constant speed). If it encounters conditions that are not compatible with its autonomous systems, the vehicle will tell the driver to take back control with an alert that is sent several seconds in advance. To achieve this result, the Audi A8 is equipped with radar units, ultrasonic sensors, camera systems, a high-performance processor to interpret all of this incoming data and integrated fast Internet. — AFP Relaxnews

Munich Re enlists Mobileye to navigate driverless car threat

TECH NEWS
Wednesday, 13 Sep 2017
2:30 PM MYT



As part of their partnership, Munich Re will subsidise some of the cost of Mobileye’s aftermarket chip and camera sets, which alert drivers to pedestrians and unintended lane departures, for insurance customers and commercial fleets. — Reuters
Auto insurers, faced with rising accident rates and the emergence of autonomous vehicles that could make them obsolete by removing human error, have reason to love and hate driverless technology. Munich Re, the world’s biggest reinsurer, has decided to embrace it. 

The company – which helps primary insurers shoulder risks in return for a share of the premiums – will sell Mobileye’s driver-assistance tech as an aftermarket add-on to commercial fleets starting this month. It’s targeting a market of about 500,000 vehicles, from garbage trucks to ride-share cars, with a bid to curb collisions and collect valuable data in preparation for the rise of self-driving autos.

“What we’re looking to do here is work with our clients to help them understand the key loss drivers within their auto portfolio, and help identify which types of losses are preventable and not preventable,” said Mike Scrudato, Munich Re’s US strategic innovation leader. “If there are less crashes and ultimately insurance premiums go down, it’s up to the insurance industry to evolve and find opportunities in that.”

Auto insurers are starting to grapple with the advent of autonomous vehicles that could cost them as much as US$25bil (RM105.01bil) in lost premiums in the US by 2035, according to an analysis released in May by Accenture Plc and Stevens Institute of Technology. At the same time, US auto insurers and their investors have been burned for years by worse-than-expected claims costs, forcing them to raise rates as higher speed limits, congested roads and distracted driving trigger increases in both the frequency and severity of accidents.

As many as 40,000 people were killed on roads in the US last year, capping the largest two-year percentage increase in roadway deaths in 53 years, according to the National Safety Council.

As part of their partnership, which includes a pilot test program earlier this year, Munich Re will subsidise some of the cost of Mobileye’s aftermarket chip and camera sets, which alert drivers to pedestrians and unintended lane departures, for insurance customers and commercial fleets. The systems retail for about US$850 (RM3,570) apiece, according to Moran David, director of business development for Intel Corp’s Mobileye in New York.

Once enough units have been sold, the two companies will present fleet data on accident reduction to state insurance regulators, who must sign off for Munich Re to bundle the tech into a newly designed insurance product it’s hoping to launch.

The deal with Munich Re is Mobileye’s first with an insurer in the US, David said. Mobileye has started similar pilots with other insurance companies, he said. — Bloomberg"


N.37 LET BUKIT LANJAN SOAR WITH SYED ABDUL RAZAK ALSAGOFF

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