Connected Car News: Tesla, Chariot, Velodyne, OTSL, DARPA, Toyota, Cypress Semi, NXP, Elektrobit & DENSO

In connected car news this week were Tesla, Ford’s Chariot service, Velodyne, OTSL, DARPA, Toyota, Cypress Semiconductor, NXP, Elektrobit, AGL, CARMD, DENSO and Mitsubishi.

Tesla Factory in Shanghai Powerpacks to PR

Tesla will be opening a manufacturing plant in Shanghai, China. The contract allows Tesla to build a wholly owned factory in the city’s free-trade zone. It is first deal granted to foreign car company and should help Tesla cut production costs. China announced that it will institute sales quotas for electric cars and plug-in hybrids in 2019.

Tesla is shipping Powerpacks to Puerto Rico for a  commerical use.

Ford’s Chariots Fired

The California Public Utilities Commission suspended Ford’s Chariot service’s operating permit after it failed nt three consecutive California Highway Patrol inspections. Drivers were found driving buses without Class B California Driver Licenses.

LiDAR Challenge

Velodyne LiDAR  announced that it is a sponsor and core technology provider for LiDAR sensors for SAE International’s AutoDrive Challenge.

The AutoDrive Challenge is a three-year program that challenges student engineering teams from elite university programs to test autonomous technologies and develop Level 4 autonomous vehicles. Each year of the program, SAE will host a competition among participating student groups, culminating in a final competition that tasks the vehicles with navigating an urban driving course.

Velodyne is providing up to two VLP-16 Puck sensors to each student team, along with technical support from engineers. The VLP-16 is an advanced 3D LiDAR sensor with low power consumption and a small form factor that can be easily integrated into autonomous vehicles. LiDAR is acknowledged as an important sensing technology for autonomous vehicles and advanced safety systems, so it will be key in helping student teams field competitive vehicles.

OTSL Simulator

OTSL  announced a real-time millimeter-wave radar simulator for autonomous driving, the Advanced Millimeter Wave Radar Simulator (AMMWR Simulator), at the SystemC AMS & COSIDE User Group Meeting held in Munich, Germany, and hosted by COSEDA Technologies GmbH. AMMWR Simulator is the world’s first sensor simulator software for autonomous driving that enables dynamic real-time simulation.

The AMMWR Simulator allows you to set the details of the size, shape, and material of models such as the target vehicle, pedestrians, and traffic signals and signs. For example, conventional products can only recognize simplified objects such as a “vehicle,” but the AMMWR Simulator can simulate individual components of a vehicle such as the “front glass” or “headlights.” Compared with conventional products that represent the distance to an object only with a simple numeric value, this simulator simulates the transmission and reception behavior of millimeter waves transmitted from sensors to detect an object and reproduces a measured distance with high accuracy. This simulator allows you to freely set characteristics such as those of radiation power, area, and frequency of a millimeter-wave radar to enable you to simulate millimeter-wave radar products from various manufacturers and prototyped millimeter-wave radar products. You can also set the influence of changing weather conditions such as rain and fog on the characteristics of a millimeter-wave radar. In addition, you can freely change the view of the visualized 3D image to enable simulation from various views, such as a view from the driver’s seat, a bird’s eye view, or a back view.

Ushr HD Maps for Caddy

Ushr Inc., creator of high-definition (HD) mapping technology and software for autonomous and semi-autonomous vehicles, today announced that its precision HD map platform has been implemented in the new Cadillac Super Cruise™ hands-free highway driving feature. With the recent release of the 2018 Cadillac CT6, Ushr also becomes the first-to-market provider of HD mapping technology in an OEM production vehicle.

The HD mapping data provides high accuracy and high quality road information that, when combined with the real-time data from cameras and GPS sensors, ensures Super Cruise can operate on limited access highways, while also providing smooth control through curves, enhancing user comfort.

OmniAir V2X Device Certification

OmniAir Consortium announces the formal launch of the world’s first vehicle-to-everything (V2X) device certification program for the connected vehicle market.

The announcement was delivered at the Plugfest by the Bay to a group of 174 participants representing 30 device makers, 11 test-houses, and test tool providers from nearly a dozen countries.

As part of the certification process, OmniAir approved test equipment and listed systems from Spirent Technologies and Danlaw, Inc. as Qualified Test Equipment (QTE) for OmniAir Consortium’s Connected Vehicle Certification Program.

Happy 10th Self-Driving Anniversary

A decade ago, the 2007 DARPA Urban Challenge unofficially kicked off today’s self-driving technology initiatives, and highlighted the need for more advanced computational power and algorithm development. Many Argo AI team members have been in the field of robotics and self-driving cars for well over a decade, and as we now work to bring this technology to the masses, we are leveraging our extensive expertise including our learnings from the DARPA Urban Challenge.

Just a few months shy of its first birthday, the Argo AI team has grown to nearly 200 employees and now has test vehicles on the road in Pittsburgh and Southeast Michigan.

Toyota Mobility for All

As the first mobility sponsor of The Olympics Games and The Paralympic Games, Toyota aims to offer mobility services and logistics expertise. Toyota is also launched a new website – In consultation with the National Center for Accessible Media (NCAM) in the United States, the website (which will be rolled out in phases) is built to be accessible for users with various impairments and to allow all users to experience the site and all its content. Whether set to default, visually impaired, hearing impaired, mobility impaired or cognitively impaired, all coding and design features work to make the experience equally enjoyable for all users.

To celebrate the launch of “Start Your Impossible,” and its partnership with The Olympic Games and The Paralympic Games, Toyota today is holding its first-ever Toyota Mobility Summit in Athens, Greece, the host city of the first modern Olympic Games. The event features a live conversation with Akio Toyoda, as well as a series of discussions led by Toyota Executive Vice President Didier Leroy, with global thought leaders and Olympic and Paralympic athletes. The event will cover topics of mobility from a social, physical well-being and sports perspectives, as well as the future of mobility via technology advancements and research.

Cypress Semi Traveo Automotive MCU

Cypress Semiconductor announced a new series in its Traveo automotive microcontroller (MCU) family with more memory to support a hybrid instrument cluster with 3D graphics and up to 6 traditional gauges, as well as a head-up display. The highly integrated, single-chip devices in the S6J32xEK series include an advanced 3D and 2.5D graphics engine and provide scalability with Cypress’ low-pin-count HyperBus™ memory interface. The series continues Cypress’ expansion of its broad automotive portfolio with differentiated system performance via its MCUs, wireless radios, capacitive-touch solutions, memories and Power Management ICs (PMICs).

The Traveo S6J32xEK series integrates up to 4MB of high-density embedded flash, 512 KB RAM and 2MB of Video RAM, an Arm Cortex-R5 core at 240-MHz performance, a Low-Voltage Differential Signaling (LVDS) video output, a Low-Voltage Transistor-Transistor Logic (LVTTL) video output and a 6x stepper motor control. This combination enables the devices to serve as single-chip solutions to drive two displays. The devices have up to two 12-pin HyperBus memory interfaces that dramatically improve read and write performance of graphical data and other data or code. A single HyperBus interface can be used to connect to two memories for Firmware Over-The-Air (FOTA) updates, which enable end-users to get software fixes and new features and applications for their vehicles on-the-go. The devices support all in-vehicle networking standards required for instrument clusters, including Controller Area Network-Flexible Data (CAN-FD) and Ethernet AVB. Additionally, the series provides robust security with integrated enhanced secure hardware extension (eSHE) support.

Geotab Clould ELD Registered with FMCSA

Geotab  announced its electronic logging device (ELD) solution, Geotab Cloud ELD, is now registered with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). A reliable fleet compliance management platform for monitoring and recording Hours of Service (HOS), Geotab Cloud ELD is designed to ease customer implementation of the ELD mandate which aims to improve highway safety and is slated to take effect December 18, 2017.

The Geotab Cloud ELD platform interconnects the Geotab GO telematics device with a mobile device running the Geotab Drive app (available for Android and iOS) through a secured cloud-based server operating the MyGeotab fleet management software. Unlike hard-wired or Bluetooth paired solutions that use a time-based approach with periodic status checks, the GO device continuously records and transmits data to the cloud-based program to effectively monitor and record HOS, including Records of Duty Status (RODS) and Driver Vehicle Inspection Reports (DVIRS). Geotab Cloud ELD does not require an in-vehicle pairing process and is highly reliab

ARCORE AUTOSTAR Starter Kit for NXP S32k

ARCCORE, an independent, established AUTOSAR software provider is broadening access to the rapidly evolving automotive market with the introduction of a new starter kit for NXP’s widely adopted S32K family of Arm® Cortex®-based microcontrollers (MCUs).

Automotive OEMs increasingly mandate the use of the open and industry-leading AUTOSAR standard in their ECUs where it simplifies development through software reuse and improved code quality and reliability. Current AUTOSAR solutions, however, are often complex and require a significant initial investment cost. This limits their adoption and in turn, innovation in automotive platforms.

ARCCORE’s new S32K starter kit includes the market proven Arctic Core basic software, the Arctic Studio tool chain and a Microcontroller Abstraction Layer (MCAL) from NXP. Components are available free of charge with a 60-day evaluation license and are fully integrated in a user-friendly integrated development environment (IDE). Combined with the S32K MCU family’s future-proof features, broad scalability and automotive-grade software tools, the kit provides a new starting point for developers of traditional and emerging AUTOSAR applications.

Synopsys NXP SDK

Synopsys, Inc. announced the extension of its multiyear Center of Excellence (CoE) program with NXP and availability of Virtualizer Development Kits (VDKs) for NXP S32 Automotive Processing Platform. VDKs, software development kits using a virtual prototype as the embedded target, enable Tier 1 and OEM companies to start software development and integration and test months before silicon is available. The CoE collaboration combines Synopsys’ VDK technology and deployment expertise with the benefits of NXP’s S32 platform. VDKs for S32 platform have been deployed to NXP internal software teams, software partners and automotive Tier1 and OEM companies to accelerate software testing.

Teen Video Challenge from Toyota

Learning to drive is an exciting time for a teen. But facts have shown it can be extremely dangerous. A short video that promotes safe driving habits might be all that it takes to become aware of dangerous driving situations. That is why Toyota and Discovery Education launched the 2018 TeenDrive365 Video Challenge.

Now in its sixth year, the challenge, sponsored by Discovery Education, invites teens to submit an original 30-60 second Public Service Announcement for 9-12 grade students about safe driving habits. The grand prize includes $15,000 cash and the opportunity to work with a Discovery film crew to re-shoot the entry video into a TV-ready PSA. Teens can register and submit their entries today through February 28, 2018 at

This year’s challenge grants include:

  • Grand Prize – $15,000 and the chance to work with a Discovery film crew to reshoot the winning video as a TV-ready PSA
  • Second Place – $10,000
  • Third Place – $7,500
  • Fourth through Tenth Places – $2,500 each
  • Four Regional Prizes – $1,000 each
  • One People’s Choice Prize – selected online through public vote – $5,000 and a trip to attend a taping of a show that airs on Discovery Communications’ Velocity Network.

DENSO & Xperi Cabin Sensing with FotoNation

DENSO Corporation, one of the world’s largest automotive technology, systems and components suppliers, and Xperi Corporation, a Silicon Valley-based technology company, announced DENSO will start joint technology development of cabin sensing with FotoNation, an Xperi group company specializing in image recognition technologies. The partnership will help DENSO significantly improve the performance of its Driver Status Monitor, an active safety product currently used in commercial vehicles. Improvements of such products also will accelerate the development of next-generation products to be used in passenger vehicles, including a system to help drivers return to driving mode during Level 3 of autonomous drive.

This collaboration will combine DENSO’s accumulated experience in improving the robustness of cabin sensing innovations and FotoNation’s sophisticated facial image recognition and neural network technologies. By combining technologies of the two companies, DENSO will be able to achieve the world’s most sophisticated driver status detection, which will not be affected by differences between individual faces, or by sunglasses, masks, and other facial coverings, in the vehicle cabin where environmental light changes dramatically.

PlanetM Awards at NAIAS

PlanetM, a Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) program, in partnership with North American International Auto Show’s (NAIAS) mobility showcase, AutoMobili-D, today announced the inaugural PlanetM Awards, which will take place on January 15, 2018 during Press Days at NAIAS.

The PlanetM Awards will further extend support for leading mobility enterprises by honoring those developing industry advancements. All AutoMobili-D exhibitors are encouraged to submit their best product for recognition in one of the following categories:

  • Autonomous Driving
  • Connected Car
  • eMobility
  • Mobility Services
  • Smart Cities

Cinemo Collaborates with Mitsubishi for Media & Middleware

Cinemo, a global leader in high performance and automotive grade multimedia playback, streaming, media management, connectivity and cloud access middleware has announced today that Cinemo and Mitsubishi Electric Corporation (Melco), a recognized World leader in the manufacture, marketing and sales of electrical and electronic equipment are collaborating together on several new infotainment projects.

Cinemo’s universal audio functionality will be included in Melco’s new custom entry level systems developed for a worldwide car manufacturer providing an impressive array of performance flexibility. This creative partnership is a further extension of the agreement first announced in 2013 where Cinemo’s Unified Media Player was integrated into Melco head unit and rear seat configurations that recently went into production.

Tesla Accused of Racist Environment

Many believe Tesla, Inc. stands out as an innovative and groundbreaking company that is at the forefront of the electric vehicle revolution. As a result, Owen Diaz, his son Demetric Di-az, and Lamar Patterson were thrilled when they landed work at Tesla’s Fremont Factory through contract staffing agencies. These dreams turned into nightmares when each was subjected to racial epithets, racist graffiti, and a hostile work environment. Today they filed suit. This is the second suit brought by California Civil Rights Law Group in 2017 against Tesla for racial discrimination.

 Instead of a modern workplace at Tesla, Plaintiffs encountered a scene straight from the Jim Crow era. Plaintiffs endured a culture seeped in the N-word, racial abuse and racist Pickaninny images drawn on boxes with no repercussions.

Newegg Adds Automotive

Newegg, the top tech-focused e-retailer in North America,  unveiled a new automotive product category on its B2B website, As of today, the category offers more than one million SKUs, with plans to grow significantly as new vendors sign on to the platform. Newegg’s B2B marketplace makes it easy for automotive suppliers to sell through Newegg, reaching new customers via the platform’s global footprint in more than 50 countries.

New AGL Members

Automotive Grade Linux (AGL), a collaborative cross-industry effort developing an open platform for the connected car, is announcing that five new members have joined the project including Adobe, Desay SV Automotive, Fiberdyne Systems, Nuance and Trend Micro.

Elektrobit ECUs for Automated Driving

Elektrobit (EB) announced a software product line that will enable automakers to build the complex and powerful electronic control units (ECUs) required for connected, highly automated driving. Called EB corbos, the line consists of three products that represent one of the first commercially available software implementations of Adaptive AUTomotive Open System Architecture (AUTOSAR), a new standard.

Key features of EB’s software include increased focus on the highest safety levels with fail-operational systems, as well as support for interconnectivity and over-the-air-updates, all of which will be must-have-features for automotive ECUs.

The EB corbos line encompasses the following products:

  • EB corbos AdaptiveCore, which is the basic software for running Adaptive AUTOSAR. It is ISO 26262-compliant up to ASIL-D, and is the core technology for creating safe, secure, flexible and high-performance ECUs.
  • EB corbos Hypervisor, which is an automotive-grade hypervisor with support for multiple operating systems and ISO 26262 certification up to ASIL-D, ensuring the highest levels of safety and security.
  • EB corbos Linux, an automotive-grade POSIX compliant operating system designed for high-performance controllers, based on the Linux-Kernel that can be used in safety-critical systems

EB is considered one of the leading suppliers of AUTOSAR-compliant ECU software, and its products are currently powering the ECUs of more than one billion vehicles on the road today.

CarMD Partners with CARCHEX

CarMD, a leading provider of automotive diagnostic information, and CARCHEX, the industry-leading provider of direct-to-consumer Vehicle Protection Plans, t announced a strategic partnership to provide CarMD customers with additional means to reduce unforeseen car repair costs. Through the partnership, CarMD® Garage customers will receive $100 off CARCHEX Vehicle Protection Plans.

SF Motors Buys InEVit

SF Motors, a Silicon Valley electric vehicle (EV) company, today announced the acquisition of InEVit Inc., an electric vehicle (EV) battery modularization startup headed by industry trailblazer and former Tesla CEO, Martin Eberhard. The company has developed and patented a unique EV chassis architecture, battery module design innovations and manufacturing techniques that will allow the EV industry to rapidly scale manufacturing of cost-and-feature-competitive vehicles. The pre-revenue company will become a wholly owned subsidiary of SF Motors, and will continue to market and license its innovations to competitive vehicle OEMs.

Octo Opens Sharemine Platform

Octo Telematics (Octo) subsidiary Omoove, Europe’s leading Shared Mobility technology provider, is further developing its Sharemine product by opening the platform to community managers and the public.

The Sharemine platform is web-based and fully-customisable. It allows individuals and companies to easily set up their own, online car-sharing and ridesharing mobile communities and then act as community managers. They are then able to offer members vehicles for hire, the opportunity to share their cars, as well as the chance to share rides with each other. Car owners providing their cars to the community can gain the maximum value from their vehicles when they are not being used. For example, if commuters are driving to the train station, rather than paying for parking during the day, they could allow a local business or entrepreneur acting as a community manager to rent their car for local usage and therefore earn money, rather than spending it. Sharemine also allows for ‘thematic’ communities, such as sports fans arranging transport to away games, or parents looking to carpool for school drop-offs and pick-up.

Vehicle-to-Grid PHEV by Mitusubishi

Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) announces the implementation of a ‘Vehicle-to-Grid’ (V2G) pilot, with the first charge point(1) already being utilized with Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV’s in-vehicle storage batteries. Using V2G-technology, peak demand on the electricity grid can be better balanced, by allowing electric vehicles to not just take power from the grid, but also return it to the network and expect to introduce a new potential earnings model for electric drivers. MMC joins forces with NewMotion, one of Europe’s largest providers of smart charging solutions for electric driving, grid operator TenneT in Netherlands, and Nuvve a worldwide leader in V2G technology and grid service deployments.

In this demonstration, MMC will provide services for capacity reserve and balancing services(2) by utilizing charging infrastructure of NewMotion and Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV parked at home or at work-place in the city of Amsterdam linked to Nuvve’s Grid Integrated Vehicle platform (GIVe). There are more than 25 thousands of Mitsubishi Outlander PHEVs available in the Netherlands.


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