Connected Car News: Hagerty, BMW, Greenlots, ANSYS, Nissan, TE Connectivity, BlackBerry, Octo & Intel

In connected car news this week for Hagerty, BMW, Greenlots, ANSYS, Nissan, TE Connectivity, BlackBerry, Octo, and Intel.

DriveShare for Divine Classics

Hagerty, the world’s largest network for people who love cars and collectible vehicles, today announced it has acquired Classics&Exotics, the nation’s only peer-to-peer online marketplace for classic cars, and relaunched it as DriveShare by Hagerty.

“DriveShare gives people an easy way to get behind the wheel of cars they’ve always wanted to drive,” said McKeel Hagerty, CEO of Hagerty. “Our goal is to provide a common platform that connects enthusiasts and owners to expand the community of people who love cars.”

Founded in 2014 and headquartered in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, Classics&Exotics quickly became the Airbnb of vintage and exotic cars by linking car owners with pre-screened, highly qualified motorists seeking a unique driving experience or the perfect vehicle for weddings and other events.

BMW Ride Share Report

Many automakers’ first forays into the “new mobility” space have taken the form of short-term car-sharing services. But BMW is currently beta-testing a premium ride-hailing service, which provides an intriguing but not-yet-perfect way for automakers to expand into mobility services, as described in a new report from the In-vehicle UX (IVX) group at Strategy Analytics “User Experience Evaluation: ReachNow Ride from BMW”.

Key report findings include:

  • The ride-hailing process for ReachNow Ride from BMW is similar, if not identical, to more widely-used ride-hailing apps such as Uber and Lyft.
  • Time and price estimates are provided, but limited pick-up and drop-off zones lead to confusion and errors. In addition, cost estimates are not accurate although not too distant from the actual cost
  • The in-vehicle experience is standardized, though riders can customize their experience in key ways. For example, users can select a desired radio station, temperature, and driver engagement request, prior to pick-up.

Derek Viita, report author and senior analyst commented, “Providing a companion ride-hailing service with a car-sharing service opens up many new transport use cases for OEMs entering the new mobility space. But cost to the user will remain a crucial factor. Ultimately, the end-to-end user experience of any transport mode needs to be compelling, and the cost needs to be appropriate for the use case.”

Added Chris Schreiner, Director, Syndicated Research UXIP, “The transport modality needs to be available whenever it is needed, simple to use, and convenient for the use case. The time required to use it for an individual journey must be reasonable in addition to being comfortable and safe. But without a focus on UX, car-sharing services will always lag behind ride-hailing/sharing services, which are better positioned to cater to a wider variety of transport use cases.”

Greenlots Awarded

Frost & Sullivan has recognized Greenlots, a global provider of open standards-based electric vehicle charging and energy management solutions, with its 2017 North American Product Leadership Award. Based on Frost & Sullivan’s market analysis of the electric vehicle (EV) charging industry, Greenlots provides the open and interoperable platform necessary for sustainably scaling the infrastructure needed to support the global EV industry. Deployed across 13 countries, Greenlots enables utilities, smart cities, site hosts, and automakers as they transition to zero-emission transportation solutions.

Robotics Injection Molding

Tennplasco, a plastic injection molding company, solved its labor shortage and met its return on investment just three and a half months after deploying Rethink Robotics’ Sawyer at its Lafayette, Tenn. facility. With Sawyer, Tennplasco has increased its productivity and efficiency, giving the company a competitive advantage in the injection molding market.///

“Check My Auto Insurance Alexa”

A new Farmers Insurance® skill for Amazon Alexa allows customers to access policy and claims information simply by using their voice. Through Alexa, Farmers® customers can inquire about the status of their claim and obtain the direct contact information of their assigned claim representative. They can also verbally pose frequently asked questions about insurance terminology, policy coverages, deductibles and limits.

The Farmers Insurance skill for Amazon Alexa also provides claim and policy information via Alexa Mobile Cards in the Alexa app for detailed records of the voice-requested materials. As part of the insurer group’s ongoing commitment to enhance the service experience for their customers, future deployments are expected to offer even more robust functionality, such as enhanced visuals for Echo Show, bill payment, and more.

ANYS 18.2

ANSYS  continues to expand upon its best-in-class products and platform, and deliver on the Pervasive Engineering Simulation vision, with today’s release of ANSYS® 18.2. This latest release brings increased levels of accuracy, speed and ease-of-use – spurring more engineers to use simulation across every stage of the product lifecycle to design cutting-edge products more efficiently and economically.

For EVs in China

Ford Motor Company – building on its global promise to provide customers with affordable and capable electric vehicles – today announced the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with Anhui Zotye Automobile Co., Ltd., a major manufacturer of zero-emission all-electric vehicles in China.

Former FTC Commissioner Hired by Law Firm

Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP is announcing the formation of an Autonomous Vehicle industry group, which includes a cross-disciplinary team of attorneys practicing in the firm’s Corporate, Intellectual Property and Litigation departments.

Honigman hired top Federal Trade Commission attorney Steve Wernikoff, who will co-lead the group along with Honigman partner Tom Appledorn. Wernikoff served as the FTC’s Enforcement Director in the Office of Technology Research and Investigation, and brings 17 years of experience in mobile and emerging technologies, privacy, data security, advertising and marketing, connected devices and big data matters.

Nissan LEAF $10,000 Off

PSEG announced a joint electric car promotion with Nissan USA to offer PSE&G customers a $10,000 rebate off the MSRP of the 2017 all-electric LEAF.  The promotion is open to customers of PSE&G and is available through September 30, 2017 or until 2017 LEAFs are out of stock (whichever occurs first).

That’s Infotainment Profits!

The global automotive infotainment market is expected to reach USD 40.17 billion by 2024 driven by the rising consumer demand for in-vehicle entertainment. Technological advancement coupled with the rising disposable income of the population contributing to the huge demand for passenger cars and other vehicles is expected to play a vital role in driving market growth.

 North America dominated the global market contributing to 35.2% of the revenues generated in 2016. Rapid adoption of these systems by consumers has resulted in the presence of a robust market in the region.

Asia Pacific is expected to show significant growth at a CAGR of 14.7% over the forecast period owing to the rising consumer income, growing urban population and increasing sale of luxury cars. Acknowledging above factors, car manufacturing companies are partnering with audio equipment manufacturing companies to enhance their cars with high-quality infotainment products. For example, Toyota has been using BlackBerry’s QNX in their cars for the last four years.

Blackberry’s QNX has been the most widely used OS, on account of its ability to provide automate the car by providing hands-free calling, mapping, and internet service. However, Linux is expected to take over the leading position and grow at the fastest CAGR of 32.9% over the forecast period. Preference of open source as it allows car manufacturers to tweak the module to provide unique features limited only to a company is expected to augment growth.

More AlertDriving

AlertDriving announced a new partnership with the training solutions provider Evolved Safety. By partnering with AlertDriving, Evolved Safety can now offer clients FleetDefenseSM, the world’s most extensive driver risk management solution.

Evolved Safety has earned a reputation for its commitment to providing customers with the best safety training programs on the market and the highest quality service. The company offers training products and services for manufacturing, construction and OSHA compliance. Online driver training is among these products and services, making AlertDriving a strong partner moving forward.

Like Evolved Safety, AlertDriving places a great deal of emphasis on safety. FleetDefenseSM can monitor driver risk, frequently test drivers to reinforce safe driving behaviors, and provide consistent safety messaging around the world. Many clients see high retention levels matched with reductions in collision rates.

Octo Works with Whoosnap

Octo Telematics (Octo), the number one global provider of telematics for the auto insurance industry, has today announced that it has partnered with Whoosnap, the platform for crowdsourced, on-demand photography for media outlets and businesses.

Whoosnap has developed an insurance-focused application, Insoore, for portable devices such as smartphones, tablets and laptops, providing the insurance industry with on-demand photography based on a community of amateur photographers. Insurers will therefore have access to cheaper photography of vehicles and incidents to streamline and reduce costs.

During the process of creating a new or renewing a car insurance policy, insurers will be able to access Insoore to request photographs of the vehicle. A certified community photographer will then take pictures and upload them to the platform. Insurers can then purchase the photographs at cheaper rates than professional photography. The same process can take place in the event of a claim as insurers can request pictorial evidence of damage to vehicles to evaluate the incident. The accessibility of the app and web-based platform means that photos can be taken and uploaded instantly. Photo authenticity is guaranteed through a certification system.

Intel & Accenture

Japan Nipponkoa Insurance, Daiichi Kotsu Sangyo and Accenture are collaborating to build a deep learning algorithm using the Intel® IoT Platform Reference Architecture to better understand individual driving habits and identify new ways to transform driver safety within Japan’s transportation industry.

The deep learning algorithm could enable transportation companies to provide personalized safety instructions for drivers, helping reduce the number of accidents, inform the development of optimal driver rosters, and enhance training programs.

TE Connectivity @Citi Global

TE Connectivity, a world leader in connectivity and sensors, today announced that Chief Financial Officer Heath Mitts will present at the 2017 Citi Global Technology Conference on Wednesday, September 6, 2017, at 3:05 p.m. EDT at the Hilton Hotel in New York City.

A live audio webcast of the conference will be available on TE Connectivity’s investor relations website at A replay of the webcast will be available for 30 days following the live webcast and can be accessed at the same website.

New LEAFs Coming September 6

The new Nissan LEAF will be revealed September 6, 2017 in Japan.

Being 100% electric and zero emissions, the new Nissan LEAF, an icon of Nissan Intelligent Mobility, offers a quiet and refreshing experience while driving. With Nissan Intelligent Mobility technologies, you are more confident with enhanced vision and can better sense what is around the car. Premium interiors designed to suit your taste offer a touch more comfort.

Nissan established itself as a pioneer in the EV movement by launching the LEAF, the world’s first mass-market electric vehicle.

Nissan is bringing the all-new 2018 Nissan LEAF to the inaugural Technology in Motion (TIM Detroit) exhibition and conference in Detroit. The three-day event will be one of the first opportunities to see the next-generation LEAF electric car following its global unveil.

TIM Detroit attendees will have the opportunity to hear about the 2018 Nissan LEAF from Chris Reed, vice president, research & development, Nissan Technical Center North America. Reed will participate in a fireside chat on Wednesday, Sept. 6, at 9 a.m. from the Main Stage inside Cobo Center.


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