If you leave Waze and Mobileye out of the picture, for regular Israelis, if they are not techies, to say there is an automotive industry in our small country sounds ridiculous. Yeah, we built half a car, the Sussita some 300 years ago, but since then, we know how to build tanks (The Merkava tanks) and have like 1.5 factories for heavy duty jeeps, also, for the defense and homeland security industries. That’s what the regular Joe would probably know.
Just the other day, the Tel Aviv based Magma Venture Partners published a Google Spreadsheet named The Israeli Automotive Landscape that basically maps ~140 companies that occupy the automotive industry at large, from startups to well established companies, proving there is a very interesting auto industry here in startup nation. It’s not all of Startup Nation’s automotive industry, but it’s not far from it.
It comes in a time when multiple automaker companies are sending delegations to Israel to meet with local Israeli automotive, 3D printing, computer vision, sensor companies in order to tap in and collaborate with Israeli innovation. In the last 6 months there have been at least 5 companies that sent groups of executives to Israel.
- As Vehicles Go High-tech, Israel’s in the Driver’s Seat (October 2016)
- Automakers Have Seen the Future and It’s in Israel (July 2016)
Ridiculous things in the Automotive Industry:
The BMW concept motorcycle on SFGate is a Clickbait
You probably read the headlines: “BMW’s New Motorcycle Concept Is So Smart You Won’t Need a Helmet”. Yeah, if you drive with no one on the road near you, in the perfect weather, you might not get hurt. You can even consider there’s a self balancing mechanism built into the bike itself, and the tires are huge which adds to the balance of this beast. But what if a driver hits you? There are still going to be drivers in the next 15-20 years. Most accidents between cars and motorcycles happen because of car drivers. Not all, most. There’s a video inside the article, it made me laugh.
Uber tries a new ad system
Just last month Uber started her tests with self driving cabs.
MIT Tech Review is telling us Uber is testing ads flown by drones, during traffic jams.
More extra reading about cars
If you want to get up to date with what’s happening, here are some top sources I follow:
- Tesla integration of home charging station + energy storage + solar will change everything
- Tesla and Panasonic to collaborate on photovoltaic cell and module production in Buffalo, New York (Panasonic is an investor in the Gigafactory, I wrote about it last time).
- Germany Outlines Three Laws of Robotics for Self-Driving Cars (Inverse)
- Mercedes’s Self-Driving Cars Will Kill Pedestrians Over Drivers (If AI needs to choose who to kill, they’ll avoid putting themselves in the situation, but if they can’t, they’ll protect the people in the car)
- What is going on at Google’s self-driving car unit? (RW)
- Not Everyone Agrees On the Future of Uber Drivers When Self-Driving Cars Arrive (Fortune)
- Most Americans say they’re ready for an autonomous future (RW)