Guess who’s the biggest investor in self-driving tech? It rhymes with Bambung

Every year, more and more money is being poured into driverless car tech, with car makers and other huge corporations betting that this’ll be the next big “thing” in the automotive industry.

A new study by Leasing Options, a British car rental firm, reveals which companies have been making the largest investments from 2014 up until now. And, yeah, we’re talking about a lot of money.

In the following graph we can observe the various annual investments per corporation:

biggest investors driverless tech
The total investment in driverless tech has reached a whopping $44 billion. Credit: Leasing Options

Samsung in the lead

Although car manufacturers have made multiple billion dollar investments since 2018, they still haven’t spent as much as tech giant Samsung.

In late 2017, the South Korean company acquired Harman, a US car infotainment and audio company, to develop connected-car technology. To seal the deal, Samsung paid some $8 billion, making it

Read More

Qualcomm Said to Make Binding Bid for Auto Tech Firm Veoneer

(Bloomberg) — Qualcomm Inc. has made a formal bid to buy automotive technology company Veoneer Inc. for more than $4 billion, beating a previous offer from Magna International Inc., according to people familiar with the matter.

The U.S. semiconductor company has formalized its offer of $37 a share, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing confidential information. Qualcomm is interested in Veoneer’s Arriver software unit, which helps cars perceive and make driving decisions, and would likely later divest the non-Arriver assets to private equity firms or other automotive companies, the people said.

Veoneer shares rose as much as 4.1% in U.S. trading. Representatives for Magna, Veoneer and Qualcomm declined to comment.

Crash-avoidance and hands-free driving technologies have become a hotly-contested battleground as automakers seek to boost prices and get the edge on rivals. Both global suppliers and chipmakers are positioning for growth in the market for advanced safety

Read More

Turning a real car into a Hot Wheels toy takes a lot of tech

Going from a 1,000-horsepower, home-built 1970 Pontiac Trans Am to a 1/64-scale toy involves a lot more steps than you might think.

Race Service

The odds are good that at some point in your life you’ve come across a Hot Wheels toy car. If you’re a car enthusiast, you’ve probably had a collection of them at some point, or maybe you have one now, but have you ever really sat and thought about how they’re made? How does Mattel take a full-size car and turn it into a 1/64-scale toy?

To find out how the process works, we went to Hot Wheels design headquarters in El Segundo, California, to watch the winner of the 2020 Hot Wheels legends tour go through it. The winner, an epic 1970 Pontiac Trans Am track car built by Riley Stair in his family’s side yard, presented some interesting challenges for the crew from

Read More

There’s a renewed push to install anti-DUI tech in all vehicles

Lawmakers, car manufacturers, and non-profit groups are still trying to figure out how to add technology designed to prevent motorists from driving drunk to new cars. Elected officials on both sides of the political aisle support making breathalyzers mandatory, but industry figures claim the technology isn’t ready to enter mass production yet.

Detecting whether a driver is drunk is relatively straightforward, police officers do it nightly, but neatly integrating a detection system into a car’s cockpit is easier said than done. No one wants to buy a car with a breathalyzer embedded into the middle of the dashboard, or sticking out from the door panel like a broken piece of trim. One of the proposed solutions comes from the Automotive Coalition for Traffic Safety (ACTS), which has developed what it describes as “a fully passive, non-invasive alcohol detection system” for commercial and fleet vehicles.

Before starting their engine, drivers

Read More