Self-Driving Systems are categorized by five-levels:
Level 1- Driver Assistance: Under specific conditions, the car controls either the steering or the vehicle speed, but not both simultaneously. The driver performs all other aspects of driving and has full responsibility for monitoring the road and taking over if the assistance system fails to act appropriately. Cruise control is Level 1
Level 2- Partial Automation: The car can steer, accelerate, and brake only in certain circumstances. Maneuvers such as responding to traffic signals or changing lanes largely fall to the driver, as well as scanning for hazards.
Level 3- Conditional Automation: The car is able to manage most aspects of driving, including monitoring the environment. The system prompts the driver to intervene when it encounters a scenario it can’t navigate. The driver must be available to take over at any time.
Level 4-High Automation: The vehicle can operate without human input or oversight but only under select conditions defined by factors such as road type or geographic area. In a shared car restricted to a defined area, there may not be any. But in a privately owned Level 4 car, the driver might manage all driving duties on surface streets then become a passenger as the car enters a highway.
Level 5- Full Automation: The vehicle can operate on any road and in any conditions a human driver could negotiate.
Manufacturers continue to plow forward to meet the 2025 CAFE (Corporate Average Fuel Economy) standards. Ramping up electric car sales is on the forefront. Be prepared to see lots more Electric Vehicles starting in 2020, for example:
The trend in construction of new vehicles using lighter weight substrates continues. According to an article by MPower, much of the focus is placed on aluminum but many automakers are turning to carbon fiber not only for exterior components but also complete inner body structures. Some of Volvo’s hybrids inner structure are primarily carbon fiber. This reduces weight and enhances rigidity. Carbon fiber is also in the Silverado/Sierra trucks where GM is using carbon fiber in the construction of new bed assemblies. Industry analysts predict a compound annual growth rate of the automotive carbon fiber market between 7.9 percent and 10.6 percent for the coming five years.
This year, the auto industry will grow 2.0% to $1.299 trillion, the slowest growth rate since at least 2011. Growth will flatten through 2022, according to eMarketer’s latest US retail forecast.
Based on an article by eMarketer, that says that US light vehicle sales have been off to a slow start this year. Cindy Liu, forecasting analyist said that will contribute to the slowdown in the overall US retail market. Auto buyers remain hesitant to purchase new vehicles amid uncertainty surrounding the economy and rising interest rates.
The auto industry represents 23.7% of all US retail sales, making it the largest retail sector. As a result, it has a large impact on the aggregate. eMarketer says that total retail sales in the US will grow 3.0% in 2019 to $5.475 trillion. Because the auto industry represents nearly one-quarter of total US retail, any growth or contraction will have an outsized effect.
According to a new LendEDU study, 32% of consumers filing for Chapter 7 bankruptcy carry student loan debt. Of that group, student loan debt comprised 49% of their total debt on average.
As of 2019, student loan debt is at an all-time high with a national total of $1.5 trillion. According to Student Loan Hero, the average student-loan debt per graduating student in 2018 who took out loans was $29,800.
The LendEDU data shows the effects of the growing burden of student loan debt. Coupled with a high cost of living and the fallout of the recession, student loans make it harder for millennials to save and put them financially behind — to the point where they may need to declare bankruptcy to be able to pay them off.