The West Is In An Unnecessary Energy Crisis

And it’s of our own making.

Image via Pexels

If you haven’t seen your energy bill climb by several factors, get ready, because it’s coming. While some of us have tried sounding the alarm of spiking costs for electricity, natural gas, and oil across the West, others have been busy rationalizing this phenomenon away. For example, when a relative of mine shared my post about electricity making recharging EVs in Germany expensive, warning associates the effect is rippling through countries, someone dismissed the information: “That’s Germany.”

Unfortunately, this isn’t voodoo magic where supposedly if you don’t believe in rapidly increasing energy costs they won’t affect you. I’ve pulled an anecdote from Twitter to demonstrate what you might be seeing soon in many other countries, including the US and Canada. One is a café in Leicester, UK where the electric bill has essentially tripled. Think about that: what would you have to do with your budget if what you spend jumped that much overnight? There are more stories like this and soon you could be one of them.

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The Blind Automotive Engineer Who Saw More Than Most

Ralph Teetor was truly a wise man from whom we can still learn much.

If you’ve read through lists of little-known automotive history facts, you likely have come across the tidbit about a blind engineer inventing cruise control. That’s about all most know on the subject, but the life story of Ralph R. Teetor is loaded with timeless value. More than just a gimmick or a footnote in automotive history, the man put into practice several valuable principles he attributed to his career and personal success, and I would have to agree it was adhering to those ideals which helped him to push past barriers many would find impossible obstacles.

Ralph was a deeply religious man.

Raised a Christian Scientist, Ralph was taught from a young age to have faith in God and to apply himself dutifully every day. That tireless work ethic and trust that a higher power was watching out for his wellbeing allowed Ralph to literally step into the darkness every day for the rest of his life, knowing he wasn’t alone in his struggles. He easily could have sunk into nihilistic despair at the challenges of living blind from the time he was a small child. Instead, he accepted his burdens and allowed God to help make his weaknesses his strengths.

Ralph didn’t believe in being a victim.

After Ralph retired, an engineer from the Speedostat (what we know as cruise control) project asked Ralph the question many probably wanted to but were too scared to verbalize. “With all that you have been able to accomplish, what more do you think you would have done if you had been able to see?” The man probably was thinking if Ralph had the use of his eyes throughout his entire lifetime, he would have been even more accomplished and productive.

Ralph, however, didn’t agree with that implication in the least. “I probably couldn’t have done as much, because I can concentrate and you can’t.” Especially in this time of constant media flow, his point is quite salient. What more could we accomplish if we switched off all the devices and distractions, concentrating for even just a short time each day?

Read more at Gears Of Time

Automotive News Roundup 8/5/2022

Here’s what you need to know about what’s happening in the industry.

Image via Tesla

I haven’t been able to get a post up for a couple of days and have several interesting items I want everyone to be aware of since they could have a huge impact on the automotive industry in the near future. Click on any of the links to get more info from the source for each story and don’t be scared to leave a comment below – I like discussing topics, even if you don’t entirely agree with my take.

1. Tesla Is On A Roll

Last night was the Tesla annual stockholders meeting and it was a pretty wild time. Yet again, many are comparing Musk to Steve Jobs, especially as he came out on stage almost an hour late and wearing black head to toe. Still, he gave quite the presentation, making the automaker’s challenges seem like mere anthills.

One of the more troubling items presented during the meeting, at least for luxury automakers, is Tesla’s forecast that it will build 1.5 million vehicles in 2022. The company also believes at the end of the year it will be building EVs at an annualized rate of 2 million units. To put that into perspective, last year BMW delivered 2,521,179 vehicles to customers last year. In other words, Tesla is almost on its heels.

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One Automotive CEO Says What We All Know

He tells the truth about doing business in China and pays the price.

Photo via Stellantis

Thanks to the oddities of local laws, virtually every foreign automaker wishing to manufacture and sell cars in China must do so through a joint venture with a domestic automaker. Those joint partnerships don’t always go so well as clearly evidenced by the implosion of the marriage between French-Italian-American company Stellantis and Guangzhou Automobile Group or GAC. In a stunning reversal, Stellantis said it will no longer be making Jeeps specifically for the Chinese market.

It was just in January when GAC was angry with Stellantis for claiming the venture would no longer be 50-50, the foreign automaker claiming it would increase its stake to 75%, since the legal documents hadn’t been signed. The Chinese auto market is notoriously xenophobic and touchy, a sad fact Jaguar Land Rover learned by successfully pursuing legal options against a copycat brand only for Chinese consumers to react adversely.

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Why We Can’t Really Talk About Electric Vehicle Fires

This topic is taboo in much of the media.

Image via YouTube

You’ve likely heard about the wildfire that’s been raging in France since it’s been all over the news while being touted as an example of the ravages of global warming. While it’s tempting to dive into why weather becomes climate at the convenience of alarmists looking to grab power or the debate about how unchecked conservationist policies led to improper forest management and an abundance of fuel to keep the fire raging, there’s another aspect of this case which isn’t getting even a whisper of a mention in American corporate news.

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Electric Cars In Germany Are Getting Expensive To Charge

This defeats a major talking point used to promote EV technology.

Photo via Reddit

Just a quick note to keep everyone apprised of a developing situation in Germany. I ran across an article from German domestic automotive site Auto Bild which is very revealing. What it comes down to is energy costs in Germany have been soaring, something anyone who’s been paying attention to the situation knows about, and it’s so bad that the cost of operating an electric car is about to surpass that of driving an internal combustion vehicle.

For years electric car enthusiasts have been incredibly smug about the lower costs associated with their vehicle of choice (never mind that the acquisition costs exclude most of the population). Pretty much everyone has seen the quippy personalized plates like “GASLOL” to taunt all the plebs who haven’t made the switch. Well, who’s laughing now?

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WEF Admits It Wants To End Private Car Ownership

Finally, they just say it out loud!

Photo via GM

The World Economic Forum headed by Klaus Schwab has famously predicted that by 2030 “you’ll own nothing and be happy.” Even with that prediction, whenever I have alleged the goal of adherents to the WEF is to eliminate private car ownership in the near future, I’ve had all kinds of ugly accusations and name-calling hurled my way. Fortunately, in a recently-published article the WEF just spells out their desire to get rid of the concept that people can own a private vehicle.

Written by Winnie Yeh, the article titled “3 circular economy approaches to reduce demand for critical metals” reasons why we can’t let people continue driving their own cars. As I’ve noted often, transitioning from internal combustion engines to electric vehicles will require considerable innovation and likely much longer than 10 or 15 years to realize, if you want to do it through a free market economy system.

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Something Strange Is Happening In Saudi Arabia

A revolution in transportation, energy, and city planning is brewing in the kingdom. But is everything as advertised?

Image courtesy of Lucid Motors

Something strange is happening in Saudi Arabia. Several years ago, I remember reading stories about the Saudis realizing the days of fossil fuel energy were numbered so they were investing heavily in “green” energy. At the time I filed it away as more hype for solar panels and wind turbines and moved on. Then Saudi Arabia’s public wealth fund became a major investor in electric car startup Lucid, claiming about a 62% stake in the company. Most largely ignored this involvement since Lucid wasn’t a player in the automotive market, only having some proof of concepts to show off at the time.

Things have changed in 2022 with Lucid pumping out luxury EVs for well-heeled customers around the globe. Many corporate media, both automotive and mainstream, have been fawning over Lucid. Some have gone so far as to openly question if the Newark, California automaker will knock Tesla off its lofty perch in the EV space. The $77,400 starting price tag for the Lucid Air might make some laugh at such an assertion, but compared to the $106,440 starting price of the 2022 Tesla Model S, a car that started at $57,400 back in November 2012, such speculation doesn’t seem quite so ridiculous.

Back in April of this year, Lucid finalized a deal with the government of Saudi Arabia for the purchase of up to 100,000 Lucid EVs over the next ten years. The agreement guarantees the purchase of 50,000 units over a decade, with the option of buying another 50,000.

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