Automotive

Army tests “hoverbike” successfully, Star Wars fans rejoice

Army tests “hoverbike” successfully, Star Wars fans rejoice

The USA Department of Defense has witnessed the first successful public test of the Army's latest in futuristic vehicles - the hoverbike. This device is officially known as the Joint Tactical Aerial Resupply Vehicle (JTARV), and can be seen tested without a pilot in a video shared by the United States Army Research Laboratory this week. The video shows a small-scale prototype test flight, and may move on to flights with pilots in the near future.

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Electric self-driving shuttle bus begins testing with passengers in Las Vegas

Electric self-driving shuttle bus begins testing with passengers in Las Vegas

If you're in downtown Las Vegas during the next week, you might spot a small, pod-like shuttle bus driving passengers up and down Fremont Street. Operated by transit company Keolis, the electric vehicle is fully autonomous, and offering free rides to the public. Officials says it's also the first self-driving vehicle of its kind to be tested on public roads with passengers in the US.

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Volvo is taking its Sunfleet car-sharing service global

Volvo is taking its Sunfleet car-sharing service global

These days, just about every big-name car manufacturer is launching their own car-sharing service. This includes GM, Ford, BMW, and Toyota. But it turns out that Volvo has been doing it for almost 20 years already, running the Sunfleet service in its home country of Sweden since 1998. Now Volvo reveals that its ready to expand the service and take it global, in turn keeping up with the recent "shared mobility" trend.

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Autonomous Nissan Leaf begins testing on London streets next month

Autonomous Nissan Leaf begins testing on London streets next month

Car-maker Nissan has announced that it will be deploying a fleet of its Leaf electric vehicles outfitted with self-driving technology on the streets of London next month. This will mark their first public test of autonomous cars to be held in Europe. Nissan adds that it has received the permission of the necessary local authorities and the modified Leafs will be driving on public roads, however exact routes haven't been decided yet.

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US Transportation Department reveals new self-driving cars advisory committee

US Transportation Department reveals new self-driving cars advisory committee

The United States Department of Transportation says it is assembling an advisory committee that will focus on automation as it relates to the automotive industry. More than two dozen committee members have already been named, including co-Chair Mary Barra of General Motors and co-Chair Eric Garcetti, the mayor of Los Angeles. The advisory committee’s Vice Chair position is held by Stanford University engineering professor Dr. J. Chris Gerdes.

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Microsoft unveils Azure-based cloud platform for connected vehicles

Microsoft unveils Azure-based cloud platform for connected vehicles

At CES 2017 on Friday, Microsoft announced its latest plan to get involved in cars and their technology. No, the company isn't making its own autonomous vehicle like everyone else seems to be doing these days. Instead it's Microsoft Connected Vehicle Platform, a cloud system built on the Azure platform that will power connected cars and their growing number of services. Along with things like navigation and "in-car productivity," it will be used to bring Cortana to the road.

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Mercedes-Benz and NVIDIA strike partnership to make an AI-powered car

Mercedes-Benz and NVIDIA strike partnership to make an AI-powered car

Mercedes-Benz and NVIDIA have announced a new partnership that will result in the two companies working together to launch an artificial intelligence-powered vehicle. The duo revealed the partnership at CES 2017, though NVIDIA’s CEO Jen-Hsun Huang said the collaboration between the two started three years ago. “At this point it is very clear that AI is going to be the future of computing,” Jen-Hsun explained. “This is an endeavor that we started three years ago that we will put on the road next year – unbelievable.”

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Ford brings Amazon Alexa to its Sync 3 vehicles

Ford brings Amazon Alexa to its Sync 3 vehicles

Amazon's voice assistant Alexa is coming to a number of new devices this year — including the smartphone — but Ford will be the first to integrate it into their cars. The two companies announced at CES 2017 that starting later this month vehicles outfitted with Ford's Sync 3 infotainment system will begin working with Alexa from the home, while sometime this summer drivers will be able to speak to Alexa from the road.

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Hyundai developing next fuel cell SUV with 348-mile range

Hyundai developing next fuel cell SUV with 348-mile range

Hyundai's first fuel cell was the 2014 Tucson SUV, and despite it already being overpriced and lacking in range compared to rival vehicles, the car maker is hard at work on a successor that ups the ante. According to Nikkei, the Japanese business publication, Hyundai is planing to debut a second generation fuel cell SUV in early 2018, boasting a range of 348 miles on a single tank.

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Self-driving car tests are heading to Boston streets

Self-driving car tests are heading to Boston streets

Boston is welcoming self-driving cars onto its streets, with city officials giving startup NuTonomy permission to test its autonomous vehicle in a small region in South Boston. This will mark the first time a self-driving car has hit the streets in Boston, and marks another step toward bringing these cars to the general public. NuTonomy has been ready to start the tests for weeks, so we’ll no doubt so the project kick off very soon.

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Sorry folks, science says hands-free calls are still a big driving distraction

Sorry folks, science says hands-free calls are still a big driving distraction

Hands-free technology is largely viewed as the solution to phone-addicted drivers, but another study has surfaced that disagrees. According to QUT’s study, which utilized the CARRS-Q Advanced Driving Simulator as part of its research, hands-free phone use while driving is still quite a distraction, delaying reaction time significantly compared to those who weren’t using any phones, hands-free or otherwise.

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Takata tipped near billion dollar settlement with U.S. authorities

Takata tipped near billion dollar settlement with U.S. authorities

Takata is close to striking a massive settlement deal with U.S. authorities, according to sources, with the financial penalty possibly being as high as a billion dollars. According to these sources, Takata’s legal team is working with Department of Justice officials on the settlement, which could include Takata pleading guilty to criminal misconduct. We could see some significant updates as early as next month, but the matter may drag on into a later date in 2017.

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