Each week TheDetroitBureau.com reports on the biggest news and events related to new vehicles, mobility, technology, trends, and offers our years of experience and knowledge in our car reviews. Then we put it all in our weekly the Headlight news podcast.
After hitting record highs this spring, gas prices are falling, reports Editor-in-Chief Paul A. Eisenstein. Prices averaged $5 per gallon earlier this summer, but have retreated to an average of $4.68 per gallon over the weekend. Crude oil prices are down and so are oil futures. This could be the start of a long slide – or just temporary relief if demand (ie more drivers on the road) increases.
Some of the other stories you should know about include:
- Those high gas prices are one reason why, according to a new study from Consumer Reports, one in seven Americans is open to buying a new electric vehicle. Almost three out of four have at least considered the idea. However, the big problem is still the charging network;
- Tesla’s massive Supercharger network will soon be accessible to non-Tesla electric vehicle owners as well. CEO Elon Musk revealed that the company is moving to open it up to all electric vehicles in the US, possibly as soon as this fall. Is this Elon a good guy? Maybe, but it also gives him access to $5 billion in federal funds dedicated to expanding the toll network in the US;
- Vietnamese electric vehicle maker VinFast is preparing to make its US debut, including opening 30 US showrooms before the end of the year. The first dozen will make their debut in California later this month;
- While most automakers suffered another tough month in June, Ford, which reports that sales are lagging behind others, posted a more than 30% increase in full-size trucks and SUVs, as and EV in positive numbers. However, to be fair, the automaker was facing its worst month of 2021 due to a massive shortage of semiconductor chips; and,
- You may soon be able to charge your vehicle for fun — using the sun. Companies like Lightyear and Aptera are covering their vehicles with solar panels that will give the vehicle a free way to draw power, even if for now that means only 10 or 20 miles of range.
Electric truck and SUV startup Rivian told shareholders it built just over 4,400 vehicles in the second quarter. That’s nearly double first-quarter output, with officials confirming the company is on track to meet its goal of producing 25,000 vehicles in 2022.
The second-quarter numbers beat analysts’ forecasts, which predicted the new automaker would produce just 3,400 vehicles during the period. The company plans to run two shifts, five days a week for the remainder of the year to reach the goal. Of course, Rivian shares jumped about 10% on the news.
In his famous 1915 ad for Cadillac titled “The Punishment of Leadership,” Thomas MacManus writes that “the leader is attacked because he is a leader, and the attempt to equal him is merely an added proof of that leadership.” . The phrase comes to mind with the arrival of the 2022 Mercedes-Benz EQS 580 4Matic Sedan, says Executive Editor Larry Printz, who says that if one can look past the 1998 Ford Focus-inspired taillights and focus on its shape sleek and muscular, you’re onto something impressive. Get the rest of the review at TheDetroitBureau.com.
Managing Editor Michael Strong says this week will kick off with a sneak peek at some of the vehicles headed for auction at this year’s Monterey Car Week in California, which concludes with the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance. With Congress back in session, which means more discussion about potential EV tax credits that have been in limbo for months and gas prices falling throughout the past week, TheDetroitBureau.com will look to see if This is a long-term trend or short-term relief.
Printz returns to take us through this week in automotive history, starting this week in 1952 with the last Crosley automobile rolling off the assembly line in Marion, Indiana. It’s the brainchild of appliance magnate Powell Crosley, who patented the idea of placing shelves on refrigerator doors. He debuted in 1939.
Discover more industry history and more by listening to TheDetroitBureau’s latest edition of Headlight News Podcast by clicking here. And look for a new episode every Monday!