EV/AV report: July 18, 2022

Toronto, Ontario – In this week’s report on electric and autonomous vehicles, the head of development of Autopilot leaves Tesla, a pioneering electric vehicle is abandoned as the market heats up, and Turo partners with Hyundai to offer car rentals electric vehicles to vacationers and potential buyers.

Departure of the director

Tesla’s senior director of artificial intelligence, Andrej Karpathy, has announced his departure from Tesla after five years in Autopilot development.

“It was a great pleasure to help Tesla achieve its goals over the past five years and a difficult decision to part ways,” Karpathy said in a statement. Posting on Twitter. “During this time, Autopilot has evolved from lane keeping on city streets and I can’t wait to see the exceptionally strong Autopilot team continue that momentum.”

The departure follows the company’s continued downsizing, as well as growing criticism of the lackluster autonomous performance of Tesla vehicles.

As of this writing, Karpathy’s successor has yet to be announced.

Turn an old sheet

The Nissan Leaf, a pioneering electric vehicle, is nearing the end of its lifespan, around the same time electric vehicles have seen wider adoption in the mainstream market, amid rising fuel prices. essence and ecological concerns.

In an interview with The Verge, a Nissan spokesperson said the company has noted renewed interest in the Leaf. At the same time, there are no plans to build a next-generation version of the Leaf, which means the updated 2023 model could be the last vehicle under the Leaf badge.

Despite being among the first budget-conscious, mass-market electric vehicles, the Leaf largely failed to make an impact in the mainstream automotive market. A victim of circumstance, it provided an affordable alternative to internal combustion vehicles before the supporting infrastructure for electric vehicles became widespread.

Try before you buy

Ever wanted to try an EV? Hyundai is partnering with the Turo car rental network to offer its electric vehicles for hire and to potential buyers looking for a new vehicle.

According to Hyundai Canada, the Evaluate program aims to allow consumers to test whether electric vehicles suit their lifestyle. Rather than just a test drive, this program offers five days of rental on a sanitized Hyundai IONIQ 5 compact electric SUV.

It’s not just tourists that Turo is targeting, Hyundai is targeting consumers who are considering an electric vehicle as their next purchase. Renters who then purchase a Hyundai EV from a dealership will receive a $500 incentive, recouping a good portion of the rental price.

Currently, the program is only available in certain cities in Quebec and Ontario with only one vehicle available. However, the Kona Electric will be available for test drives later this year.