Tesla Autopilot milepost, Kia electric strategy, China's EV spying: Today's Car News


BMW Vision iNext concept

BMW Vision iNext concept

As the 2018 LA Auto Show winds down, we explore some questions that came out of it, starting with why Kia plans two electric models with the same long-range battery. Tesla announced at the show that its cars have now covered a billion miles driving on Autopilot. Electric cars in China send a lot more data to authorities than gas cars do. And the EV Drive Coalition starts its efforts to get tax credits for electric cars extended. All this and more on Green Car Reports.

Kia announced two new electric cars at the 2018 LA Auto Show this week, the 2019 Niro EV and the 2020 Soul EV, which will arrive at Kia dealerships within months of each other, and both have the same big, likely-expensive, 64-kilowatt-hour battery that's rated at 239 miles in the Niro EV. We asked Kia how the company plans to find enough buyers for both models and why they didn't make one more affordable with a shorter range. Here's what they said.

Tesla announced at the show that its cars have covered 1 billion miles driving on Autopilot. All those miles add to the trove of data that Tesla engineers and artificial-intelligence programs can use to make the system drive better.

A new report shows that electric cars in China share much more personal data with Communist authorities than gas cars do.

A new coalition of automakers and other electric-car advocates—led by Tesla and General Motors—began lobbying the current lame-duck Congress to extend electric car tax credits—before they expire for the two largest electric automakers.

BMW told our partners at Motor Authority that it will have a fully autonomous car—one that can go anywhere at any time, with no need for driver intervention—ready to go on sale in 2021. It says the only reasons they haven't sold it sooner are "government regulations" and "high-resolution" maps. Oh, only that!

Finally, on the self-driving car front, GM gave some weight to its new Cruise self-driving car business by installing the president of the mother company, GM, as CEO of Cruise.

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