Politics

Tesla mulls federal suit to sell in Texas, Michigan, other states (and Hurricane Katrina may help)
Tesla mulls federal suit to sell in Texas, Michigan, other states (and Hurricane Katrina may help)

This is a very big week for Tesla. Just a few short months after delivering its first Model X crossovers to earlybird customers, the all-electric automaker will begin taking reservations for another new model tomorrow. Priced from $35,000, the Tesla Model 3 could dramatically boost Tesla's sales...Read More»

Google's Self-Driving Prius
California DMV Driving Autonomous Car Developers Off The Road & Out Of State

If we learned nothing else in grade school, we learned that going first is a scary thing. You're expected to wow everyone watching, and you set the tone for all the folks that follow. It's a big risk, and a big responsibility. California is feeling those kinds of jitters right about now, as it's...Read More»

Sample driver's license
28 States Use Outdated Driver's License Format, Which Could Leave You Stranded At The Airport

When we think of technology and change, we often think of computers, mobile phones, cars, and such. But today, even the most mundane objects are evolving, from electrical outlets to thermostats. Driver's licenses are not immune. Unfortunately, like your grumpy uncle who's still mad about the...Read More»

2007 BMW 335i and 2015 Fiat 500e electric car in driveway, May 2015  [photo: Chris Baccus]
Fines For Backing Into Your Driveway: Public Safety Issue Or Violation Of Privacy?

Like 18 other states, Florida only requires cars to carry one license plate, mounted at the rear of the vehicle. That probably helps to trim expenses at Florida's DMV, but it also means that when a motorist backs into her driveway, law enforcement officials can't read her car's plate. The City of...Read More»

Pothole repair (via Wikimedia)
Bad Roads Cost U.S. Drivers More Than $500 A Year

America is great at many things, but one area where we could stand some improvement is our transportation infrastructure. According to a report in the Wall Street Journal, our nation's crumbling highways and byways cost drivers more than $500 per year -- and the situation's likely to get worse...Read More»

Texas license plate featuring Confederate flag
Supreme Court Nixes Texas Confederate-Flag License Plates

Specialty license plates have become big business in recent years, but they've brought their share of troubles, too. While some plates feature innocuous school crests or happy, friendly natural landscapes, others court controversy with politically charged slogans. That's made things tough for DMVs...Read More»

Elon Musk
Texas Snubs Tesla As Clock Runs Out On Direct-Sales Bill: What About The Hyperloop & Gigafactory?

Yesterday, a gavel banged in Austin, Texas, bringing the state's 84th legislature to an end. As with most legislative sessions, officials made progress on some fronts, but many bills were tabled or died in committee. As Auto News reports, two of those failed bills would've allowed Tesla Motors to...Read More»

OJ Simpson in vintage Hertz ad
Senate & House Consider Bills To Force Rental Companies To Repair Recalled Cars

Rental car companies like Avis and Hertz aren't required to fix recalled vehicles before loaning them to customers. Several years ago, that yielded tragic results for Raechel and Jacqueline Houck, two sisters who were killed after unknowingly renting a recalled car from Enterprise Rent-A-Car. The...Read More»

Tesla Motors gallery in Houston Galleria, opened October 2011, with Model S on display
Tesla Triumphs In Maryland As New Bill Allows Sales At Four Sites: Which State Is Next?

Another one bites the dust -- and more will surely follow. Auto News reports that the Maryland legislature has passed a bill that would allow Tesla to open up to four retail locations in the state. Governor Larry Hogan hasn't indicated whether he'll sign the bill, but at least one delegate with...Read More»

The White House, Washington, D.C.  [Creative Commons license by dcjohn]
Dealers Gear Up To Fund GOP Presidential Candidates, But Will Tesla Supporters Lose Out?

It's no surprise that U.S. auto dealers and dealer networks skew heavily Republican. The GOP has built a reputation as being pro-business and anti-regulation -- stances that appeal to many in the business community. According to Auto News, though, the 2016 election cycle could be a confusing one...Read More»

2014 Tesla Model S
Tesla Wins In Georgia, Loses In West Virginia

For Tesla fans below the Mason-Dixon line, we have good news and bad news, courtesy of Auto News. Since it's Friday, we'll start with the good news: Georgia has passed a bill that (a) increases the number of outlets that Tesla can operate in the state and (b) allows the automaker to sell an...Read More»

Gas pump
Oregon's OReGO Program Gives Drivers An Option: Pay Gas Tax Or Pay By The Mile

Our roads are in terrible shape, and we are largely to blame. Things wouldn't be so bad if our elected officials had occasionally increased the federal gas tax, which funds road repair and construction at the national, state, and local levels. Unfortunately, that tax hasn't been raised in 22 years...Read More»

John Oliver
John Oliver Saved Net Neutrality: Can He Save Our Roads, Too?

Last summer, things looked grim for fans of net neutrality. The Federal Communications Commission was considering new rules that would allow internet service providers like Comcast and Cox to charge websites like Netflix and Hulu higher fees to keep their content flowing freely. Then, a funny thing...Read More»

Tesla owners & supporters gather in Statehouse in Austin to support company [photo: John Griswell]
Is Tesla Finally Coming To Texas? (And If So, Is It Thanks To The Gigafactory And The Hyperloop?)

Across much of America, it's cold today. Newscasters explain that by pointing to a blast of icy air swooping in from the North Pole, but others might think that the chill is coming from beneath their feet. Those folks know that a bill is being considered by the Texas legislature that could finally...Read More»

Texting while driving
Report: Hand-Held Cell Phone Bans Don't Make Roads Any Safer

As of today, 14 states, plus the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, have passed laws preventing drivers from using hand-held cell phones. A whopping 44 states (plus D.C. and the above territories) prohibit texting behind the wheel -- an act that tends to involve a...Read More»

Railroad map prepared by the Michigan Railroad Commission, circa 1876.
GM Announces Support For Michigan's Anti-Tesla Bill, Governor Then Signs It

Last week, we told you about a hastily amended bill in Michigan that would prevent Tesla from setting up shop in the Wolverine State. It had passed both houses of the legislature and was headed to Governor Rick Snyder's desk. The only question remaining was: would Snyder sign it? Then yesterday...Read More»

The Jetsons Car
Transportation 2030: Study Envisions Autonomous Car Hell, Autonomous Bus Heaven, No Flying Cars

Look out the window. Are the roads in your city/town/hamlet clogged with traffic? Have they been that way for the past several decades? Do you wonder if things ever get better? New York University's Rudin Center for Transportation Policy and Management knows the answers to the first two questions...Read More»

Gavel. Image: Brian Turner
Judge Cuts Hyundai's Fine To $73 Million In Montana Wrongful Death Suit

In May of this year, a jury in Montana ruled against Hyundai, siding with the families of two teenage boys who died in a 2005 Hyundai Tiburon. The jury set a massive, $240 million penalty, which Hyundai subsequently appealed. According to Auto News, the judge in the case has now cut that fine by...Read More»

gas pump
U.S. Senators Propose Gas Tax Increase. Will It Fix Our Crumbling Roads & Bridges?

America doesn't do a great job of maintaining its highways and byways. At least a third of our roads are substandard, and our crumbling bridges need $3.6 trillion of repairs. Part of the reason for those shortcomings is that the federal gas tax, which was designed to keep our infrastructure up to...Read More»

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