VW’s rideshare arm using Apex.AI software to enable autonomous robotaxis using ID.Buzz EVs
Volkswagen Group’s rideshare mobility company MOIA announced it is using Apex.AI’s software development kit to create and implement its own passenger management system to enable a network of autonomous ID.Buzz EVs.
MOIA is a branch of Volkswagen Group founded in 2016 with a specific focus on rideshare technologies and fleet management. We first covered the company when it began developing an electric van to replace its network of combustion rideshare vehicles, which eventually evolved into plans for robotaxis.
Since 2021, MOIA has been working alongside Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles to develop and implement a pilot project for autonomous rides, beginning in its native Germany before expanding to cities around the world.
Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is also the Group entity responsible for production of the new and popular ID.Buzz, offering the perfect electric vessel for MOIA to implement and scale its autonomous rideshare network.
To ensure safety and dependability to its riders, MOIA must ensure it has the latest technology in place to manage both its fleets and the functions its autonomous ID.Buzz vehicles are performing. With the help of scalable software developer Apex.AI, MOIA hopes to have an established network of autonomous ID.Buzz EVs expanding internationally within a couple years.
Autonomous ID.Buzz rides are closer than ever in Germany
The two companies shared details of a new collaboration today, in which MOIA will rely on Apex.AI’s cutting-edge software technology to enable the automation of much of its passenger interaction in the autonomous ID.Buzz EVs for the digital age.
While MOIA has its own wealth of experience in software, it says Apex.AI’s software development kit (SDK) will expedite its development process to bring a viable passenger management system to market. MOIA CEO Sascha Meyer spoke:
The acceptance of autonomous ridepooling depends to a large extent on whether people trust such a service in every situation. A high-performance passenger management system is a key prerequisite for using intelligent, self-driving vehicles to establish a mobility service that our passengers can rely on. The development of our passenger management system using Apex.AI’s middleware is the ideal basis for this.
By continuing to work with Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles, MOIA looks to implement its new proprietary passenger management system in ID.Buzz vehicles to ensure it can monitor and manage a myriad of functions during autonomous rides. This includes the opening and closing of doors, interior auxiliary functions, and monitoring safety systems to ensure passenger comfort. It will need to be developed with the help of Apex.AI first, of course. CEO Jan Becker also shared his thoughts:
We founded Apex.AI with the goal of establishing operating software for the autonomous era. The partnership with MOIA is a win-win: The operating system consisting of Apex.Grace and Apex.Ida is the perfect base for MOIA’s passenger management systems use cases. Both companies are working closely together to develop the product directly in agile software teams. We are excited to enable smart mobility services such as autonomous ridepooling in the future through our cooperation with MOIA.
Looking ahead, MOIA says it will develop its ID.Buzz vehicles with Volkswagen Commercial to launch Europe’s first fully-autonomous mobility-as-a-service (MaaS) network, beginning in Hamburg, Germany sometime in 2025.
Although Volkswagen Group is touting some of the more ambitious goals for electrification from a legacy automaker, several of its marques have hit development speed bumps due to the automaker’s lackluster development progress alongside its software arm Cariad.
Developing a reliable software stack for electric vehicles is a lot easier said than done, and a huge reason why automakers like Tesla have found so much success and longevity at the top of the market. EVs themselves resemble computers more than traditional combustion vehicles, so software is absolutely crucial.
Add autonomous driving to the equation and those developers are going to want to ensure they have the most advanced, safe, and reliable tech they can get their hands on, which is where Apex.AI comes in.
I’ve covered this company several times in the past, and it could go down in history as one of the major unsung catalysts behind the scenes, helping expedite EV transitions and their adjacent technologies like autonomy. The truth is, many of these legacy automakers who have spent decades specializing in mechanical parts just don’t have the software knowledge to compete.
Apex.AI offers an all-in-one stack to help those companies transition hardware-centric reliance over to software defined vehicles – the perfect middle man. Seems like MOIA still has a ways to go before we see autonomous ID.Buzz vans driving around, but I think the company is a lot closer to market now that Apex.AI is involved. We shall see.
NIO sets YTD order intake record after new ES6 launch in May
NIO’s new ES6 already looks to be a key factor as the EV maker looks to expand its brand and compete in the booming Chinese electric vehicle market. According to Morgan Stanley, NIO hit a new year-to-date order intake record aided by the launch of the second-generation ES6.
After launching what many consider its most important model to date two weeks ago with its second-gen ES6 electric SUV, NIO has seen increased interest in the brand.
Although NIO was the only major EV maker in China to see a monthly sales decline in May, delivering 6,155 models (down 8% from April), the company has a plan to turn things around… and it already looks to be paying off.
Although the ES6 has been the company’s top seller since launching in 2018 as a more affordable option to the ES8, NIO knew it was time for an upgrade.
The EV maker is focusing on its NT 2.0 EV platform vehicles, including the recently launched EC7, second-generation ES8, ET5, and ES7 models. All NT 2.0 models are built on the NIO Adam supercomputer using four Nvidia DRIVE Orin system-on-chips (SoCs).
New ES6 boosts NIO’s order intake to record YTD high
A research report released last week from the Chinese consumer behavior research agency CarFans highlighted consumer behavior in NIO stores within the first 72 hours of launching (May 24 to May 27) the new ES6.
The report found each NIO store received 90 pre-orders on average, with around 20 confirmations that included a down payment.
With roughly 330 stores, that’s around 29,700 pre-orders or 6,600 confirmations. For just three days, that’s pretty impressive for a premium SUV.
Although the cancellation rate is expected to be around 10%, the new ES6 is already leading to a new order intake record for the year, according to Morgan Stanley analyst Tim Hsiao (via CnEVPost).
In a research note on June 5, Hsiao said the firm had been tracking feedback from startups’ major sales channels in Tier 1 cities since last year to analyze the market. The team shared data that confirmed the new ES6 accounted for 35% to 40% of new orders in May, suggesting a meaningful impact on inflow as it launched in the final week of the month.
NIO’s overall traffic at flagship stores rose 30% to 40% month-over-month, with momentum continuing into early June. The new ES6 is NIO’s cheapest electric SUV, starting at RMB 368,000 ($51,614).
Meanwhile, the team said that despite customer traffic at the stores it tracks returning to levels seen this February, they are still “20% below last September’s level when the company rolled out ET5.”
Vineyard Wind 1’s first turbine blades arrive in the US
The first turbine blades for Vineyard Wind 1, the US’s first commercial-scale offshore wind farm, have arrived at the New Bedford Marine Commerce Terminal in Massachusetts.
The $3.5 billion offshore wind farm will feature 62 GE Haliade-X 13-megawatt (MW) turbines spaced one nautical mile apart. The first turbine blades – each one 107 meters (351 feet) long – arrived at the Port of New Bedford (pictured above) from GE’s production site in Nazaire, France, on the heavy load vessel Rolldock Sky. (And no, it’s not lost on us, either, that wind turbine blades arrived on a fossil fuel vessel. May we collectively resolve that ironic problem ASAP.)
The turbine sections will be assembled at the terminal before they’re shipped out and installed this summer.
The 800 MW Vineyard Wind 1 is 15 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket and 35 miles from mainland Massachusetts. It’s a 50-50 joint venture between clean energy company Avangrid and Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP) funds CI II and CI III.
Vineyard Wind I will supply clean energy for over 400,000 homes and businesses in Massachusetts and reduce carbon emissions by over 1.6 million tons per year. It’s expected to come online at the end of 2023.
Read more: This US offshore wind farm is piloting a bubble curtain – what it is and why it’s cool
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Save energy with a 4-pack of Govee dual Wi-Fi smart plugs that can automate lights, fans, more at $30 (25% off) in New Green Deals
Using smart plugs can lead to more than just a convenient home. It can lead to a more energy-efficient home. Simply program a smart plug to turn off the lights, fan, or even a heater (in the winter) and you’ll immediately begin saving electricity. Every little bit counts, and depending on what you automate, can lead to multiple kW of savings every month, and dozens per year. Right now we’re seeing a 4-pack of dual Wi-Fi smart plugs on sale for just $30, which saves 25% and marks a new low that we’ve tracked. We also have a wide selection of Tesla and e-bike discounts in today’s New Green Deals, so you won’t want to miss that either.
Head below for other New Green Deals that we’ve found today and of course Electrek’s best EV buying and leasing deals. Also
Automate lamps, fans, heaters, and more with Govee’s dual smart plug
Govee’s official Amazon storefront is offering a 4-pack of its Wi-Fi Dual Smart Plugs on sale for $29.99 shipped once you clip the on-page coupon. Today’s deal delivers a full 25% in savings and comes in at $10 off. Not only that, but it’s $2 below the previous best pricing and marks a new low that we’ve tracked. Smart plugs have a lot of uses around your home, but one you might not think of is the energy saving implications of using them. Today’s deal is actually pretty unique, too, as it’s a 4-pack of dual smart plugs for just $7.50 each, and each one is individually-controlled, meaning you’ll have eight smart outlets in your home once picking the kit up.
All you’ll have to do is plug in various items in your home and the smart plug can begin automating your life. One great thing to use smart plugs for is lamps or other lights around the house. Simply program it to turn them off when you leave and on when you come back home. Not sure how much power that’ll save? Well, even if you’re using LEDs, most bulbs are around 10W or so of power draw. Leave that light on for 10 hours throughout the day, and you’ve now used 100W of electricity. Multiply that by a few lights in your house, five days a week, and you’re burning several kW of power every month for lighting a home that nobody’s in. On top of that, you can use smart plugs to turn on things like mini air conditioners, fans, or heaters depending on the season, ensuring those aren’t left on when nobody’s home, either. The smart plugs here can be controlled by the Govee app as well as either Alexa or Assistant, allowing for full programming as well as voice commands.
Leave behind gas and oil when you use Greenworks’ 80V electric mower
Are you tired of having to remember to get gas for the mower when it comes time for summer lawn chores? Well, Amazon has you covered. Right now the Greenworks Pro 80V 21-inch Cordless Electric Lawn Mower is on sale for $372.81 shipped. You’ll normally pay $497 for this mower, and today’s deal comes in at a match for the second-best price we’ve seen all year long. In fact, we’ve only seen it this low once before at the beginning of May, and before that it hit $345 one time back in April, showing just how good of a deal this discount is. Not only will you get the 80V electric lawn mower, which Greenworks says has “gas-like performance,” but also two 2Ah 80V batteries which deliver up to 60 minutes of runtime per charge.
Powered by a TRUBRUSHLESS motor, this Greenworks 80V electric lawn mower has “twice the torque, power, and longer runtime” compared to normal brushed alternatives. While traditional mowers require gas every time they run, and yearly oil changes and tune ups, electric mowers need none of those things. All you have to do is charge the battery and it’s ready to mow. Occasionally, you might need some new blades, but outside of that maintenance will be next to none here. Starting it is even simple, as you just have to press the button and the quiet electric motor will whirl to life. So, if you’re ready to enter the 21st century of mowing and leave gas behind, then the Greenworks Pro 80V 21-inch model is a solid upgrade for your lawncare setup.
Joining this price drop on this more powerful Greenworks electric mower at $156 off and a series of ongoing seasonal deals from the brand, you’ll find a series of offers now live from $8 on Amazon highlighted below to kit out your yard prep setup at a discount as well:
Juiced’s RipCurrent S e-bike lets you travel greener this summer
Today, Juiced Bikes is clearing out old stock of the RipCurrent S e-bike for $1,849 shipped with the code RIDE50 at checkout. Normally $2,399, like other colorways still fetch at Juiced, today’s deal comes in at a new all-time low that we’ve tracked. In fact, it beats our last mention by an additional $50 thanks to the promo code tacked on today. Designed to help you travel greener this summer, the Juiced RipCurrent S e-bike has a lot of solid features. For starters, it can travel at up to 28 MPH, which makes it easy to ride to or from work. The 70+ mile range per charge means you can travel longer distance before having to plug back in, too.
Now, how can this e-bike make your travel greener and more eco-friendly this summer? Well, the battery can be easily charged with solar panels or power stations, which can let you enjoy off-grid power. This means that those who value being green over all else can now travel without having to have massive batteries or large solar panel banks to charge a car. The 70+ miles of range here means you can easily travel over 30 miles to work and then the same distance back, all without having to charge mid-day. However, if you do need to power up before heading home, just plug into a standard 110V wall outlet and you’ll be ready to go. Of course, there’s also a display that shows your speed, ride mode, and battery life remaining at a glance. The rear rack and fat tires make carrying heavier loads simple, even when riding over softer terrain. Learn more about the Juiced RipCurrent S e-bike in our previous coverage.
New Tesla deals
After checking out the Govee Wi-Fi smart plugs on sale above, if you keep read, you’ll find a selection of new green deals that will make your Tesla experience better in multiple areas. From storage to keep recordings on to phone mounts, car chargers, and anything else we can find, it’ll be listed below. Each day we’ll do our best to find new and exciting deals and ways for you to save on fun accessories for your Tesla, making each trip unique. For more gift ideas and deals, check out the best Tesla shop. Keep reading on for e-bike, Greenworks, and other great deals.
New e-bike deals + electric scooter discounts
If you’re looking to get out and enjoy the sunshine still after using your new electric mower, than we recommend you experience it than on another e-bike or electric scooter you just got at a fantastic price through one of our deals and sale below. You can use it for fun, exercise, or even transportation to and from work or the coffee shop. We have several people here that will regularly commute to coffee shops or offices on their e-bike, as it cuts down on fossil fuel usage as well as allows them to enjoy some time outdoors on nice sunny days. Below, you’ll find a wide selection of new e-bike deals and electric scooter deal in all price ranges, so give it a look if that’s something you’d be interested in picking up. As always, the newest e-bike deal and electric scooter discounts and sales will be at the top, so shop quick as the discounts are bound to go away soon.
Additional New Green Deals
After shopping the Govee Wi-Fi smart plugs on sale above, be sure to check out the other discounts we found today. These new green deals are wide-ranging from outdoor lawn equipment to anything else we find that could save you money in various ways, be that cutting gas and oil out of your life or just enjoying other amenities that energy-saving gear can bring. As always, the newest deals will be at the top, so shop quick as the discounts are bound to go away soon.
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