China built the first electric car designed exclusively for ride-hailing

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The D1 is a partnership between Didi Chuxing and BYD

Two of China’s top companies have joined forces to design, develop, and build an electric car for the express purpose of ride-hailing.

The vehicle is an adorable green hatchback called the D1, and it was developed by Didi Chuxing, the top ride-hailing company in China that notoriously defeated Uber in 2016, and BYD, one of the leading electric vehicle manufacturers. The D1 will have a range of 418 km (260 miles) as judged by NEDC (New European Driving Cycle). They also explained some of the more interesting design touches that make this vehicle particularly well-suited for app-based ride-hailing.

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What happens if Uber and Lyft flee California? Look at Austin

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Line of rideshare vehicles driving in protest

 The ride-hail services are threatening to stop service in the Golden State to protest a judge’s ruling. They did something similar in Texas in 2016.

A California judge has ordered Uber and Lyft to treat drivers as employees; the companies say they’ll leave the state rather than comply.

RAFAEL RODRIGUEZ REMEMBERS the moment he learned Uber and Lyft were leaving Austin. “It was Mother’s Day, and I was with my girl in a restaurant,” he says. “I said, ‘Now I’m not paying for that piña colada.’” Today, he laughs about it. But in 2016, the situation was worrying. Rodriguez was a full-time driver for the ride-hail companies. Just two days later, the platforms ditched the Texas capital, frustrated that they had lost a ballot measure that forced them to fingerprint potential drivers for background checks. Rodriguez was out of a job.

Now, something similar might happen on a much bigger scale, in California. Earlier this month, a state judge ordered the ride-hail companies to treat ride-hail drivers as employees, instead of independent contractors. The companies had said they would stop operating in California on Friday, but an appeals court on Thursday delayed the effective date of the ruling until it could rule on the companies’ appeal.

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The results are in for the sharing economy. They are ugly

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An Uber ride in Brooklyn last month. The ride-hailing company’s business collapsed in March as shelter-in-place orders spread through Europe and the United States.

 Lyft, Uber and Airbnb depend on travel, vacations and gatherings. That’s a problem when much of the world is staying home.

OAKLAND, Calif. — The coronavirus pandemic has gutted the so-called sharing economy. Its most valuable companies, which started the year by promising that they would soon become profitable, now say consumer demand has all but vanished.

It is not likely to return anytime soon.

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The death of cars was greatly exaggerated

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The founders of Uber and Lyft, among others, declared that people would no longer need to own cars. Instead, car ownership is rising.

Throw your driver’s license out the window. Better yet, don’t get one at all.

For nearly a decade, that’s been the message from buzzy transportation companies. In 2011, car-sharing company Zipcar touted a study claiming millennials believe car ownership is difficult. The same year, Zimride, founded by the guys who would later cofound Lyft, was touted as a startup challenging the “old model of individual ownership.” Former Uber head Travis Kalanick boasted that his driver’s license had expired and that his 1999 BMW M3 convertible—his only car—had a broken alternator.

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Lyft’s main taxi business is already profitable in some areas, but self-driving cars and bike-sharing are eating into that revenue

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A man rides a Lyft scooter near the White House in Washington DC Reuters

JPMorgan says Lyft’s core ride-hailing business is already profitable in certain markets.

It’s other bets on things like bikes, scooters, and self-driving cars that are dragging down the company’s balance sheet.

Other Wall Street analysts have also raised their estimates and targets for Lyft following second-quarter earnings that topped expectations.

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Lyft’s robo-taxis have made more than 50,000 rides in Las Vegas

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If you’ve been to Las Vegas in the last year, you might have seen one of Lyft’s self-driving cars tootling up and down the Strip. Heck, you might even have ridden in one.

The company has just revealed it’s now given more than 50,000 automated rides to paying passengers in the city, up from 30,000 in January 2019. Lyft says the figure makes it the largest commercial self-driving car program currently operating in the U.S.

Lyft partnered with vehicle technology firm Aptiv to launch the service, with locals and tourists alike able to request a ride in the usual way, via the Lyft app. It uses 30 modified BMW 540i cars, all kitted out with Aptiv-made sensor, cameras, and software to ensure a safe ride.

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The Gig Economy’s unhappy middle class

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Uber, Lyft, Postmates, and Deliveroo. These words are now part of our everyday lexicon.

With Lyft and Uber going public, we need to face facts about their business model

The gig economy has changed the world. I find it hard to remember when I didn’t see hundreds of delivery scooters zipping around the city near our office. Nor do I easily recall when it was unusual to see somebody happily getting into an unmarked car driven by someone they didn’t know. From Beijing to London to San Francisco, our cities are bisected 24 hours a day by the journeys of bicycle couriers, delivery mopeds, and taxi drivers.

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Despite Uber and Lyft, urban car ownership is growing

Travelers are stuck in a traffic jam as people hit the road before the busy Thanksgiving Day weekend in Chicago, Illinois

In a Reversal, ‘Car-Rich’ Households Are Growing

Despite ride-hailing’s promise, vehicle ownership (and traffic) is on the rise in America’s biggest, most transit-oriented cities. So how is mobility really changing?

There is no doubt that ride-hailing services like Uber and Lyft are remaking how people get around major American cities. The growing availability of shared bikes, e-bikes, and e-scooters is further changing the personal mobility story. The transformation is partly personal, offering a wealth of options for getting around town. It’s also supposed to be societal, ameliorating clogged traffic and boosting transit ridership.

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California eyes driverless car testing with passengers

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Less than a month after Uber’s fatal accident in Arizona, California regulators issue a proposal for a pilot test of passenger-carrying autonomous vehicles.

California may start allowing self-driving cars, like this one for Lyft, to carry passengers without a human driver behind the wheel.

Regulators in California are moving closer to allowing driverless cars to carry passengers, even without a backup driver present.

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A massive Chinese ride-sharing service removed passenger attractiveness ratings after a woman was killed

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Didi suspended its ride-sharing service after a 21-year-old woman was murdered. Carlos Jasso/Reuters

Didi Chuxing, the Chinese ride-sharing giant, said it would remove creepy passenger ratings from its app after a woman was allegedly murdered by her driver.

Didi’s Hitch service lets people share rides, but was suspended last week after the murder.

Didi said it would also remove passenger photos and was even considering voice recording every trip to resolve passenger disputes.

The ride-sharing service has 450 million users, and has little competition after Didi acquired Uber’s Chinese business in 2016.

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