What are we doing talking about self driving cars? Or autonomous cars?
This morning we have The Colonel with us, lets see if he is willing to share his thoughts about self driving vehicles.
Q: Colonel Good Morning, how was your week end.
A: Great week end guys, yes...I feel good too.
Q: What do you think of the prospect of self driving vehicles?
A: What a loaded question, for urban areas its long overdue.
Q: Long overdue? Are you serious?
A: Have you driven in the GTA lately, or better yet who wants to drive in the GTA. Or any major metro area?
Q: But self driving cars, passively sitting in a vehicle?
A: I do not have much desire driving in constantly congested urban areas, perhaps you guys do.
Q: Have you reached a point that you do not enjoy driving?
A: I enjoy driving on my terms, in urban areas its on "someone else's" terms.
Q: We agree with you that the level and intensity of traffic is increasing on a daily basis, and its not much fun.
A: Precisely, let someone else do the slogging (driving) in traffic.
Q: You have a penchant for high performance cars, V8's, horsepower.
A: Yes I do, and have come to realise that its not very useful on a daily basis.
Q: It must be frustrating?
A: Way back in the day if you got stuck in traffic with a high performance car it was not much fun, and would usually foul up a set of spark plugs. Today its not the case, but its even more frustrating.
Q: The instant a stretch of highway opens up, folks have a tendency to "throttle up".
A: Exactly, they throttle up to alleviate a level of frustration, and its probably not the safest thing to do.
Q: You are a proponent of self driving vehicles.
A: Absolutely, especially on congested routes (most of them) it would make everyone's life much easier.
Q: This will not happen in the near future.
A: Probably not, but at some point it will happen.
Q: We never would have thought that you were a proponent of self driving cars.
A: See...I surprised you guys this morning.
Q: Must be the reason manufacturers are including a bunch of "driving aids" in vehicles.
A: They are certainly exploring the terrain, and possibilities.
What can we say, July was an month of epic results. As we said when most manufacturers are firing on all cylnders, reinforced by free flowing cheap money to fund purchases, leases, and deal with deficiencies...it generates records.
The biggest winner is the Canadian consumer when they acquire a vehicle.
Imagine for a moment if products would have a "cost cutting" content on their spec sheets, labels, ingredient lists. It would be interesting...what do you think?
To get your curiosity going for the various events starting today in Monterey, an informative Monterey Schedule and photo gallery.
The other day it struck us. Yes we had an epiphany to the extent of cost cutting that is rampant in all areas of production, manufacturing, and retailing.
We have often made reference to Power Point pilots, and spreadsheet jockeys in the processes of saving money, and cutting costs.
In the auto industry, one supplier cuts costs, the component is subsequently sub par, and a myriad of manufacturers initiate recalls. Yes...they are all using the same component, from the same supplier.
Lets assemble vehicles "somewhere" (ideally with low labor costs), lets cooperate with a plant that builds components for a few manufacturers (to save money) while creating an optic that its all separate, and all independently trained. Agreed many of these initiatives are empowered by technology, and were a mere figments of the imagination a few years ago.
Go to any retailer, prices are either up, and/or quality is down to control costs. Lets not even talk about the service that is provided my a myriad of retailers.
The value equation is a constantly moving target. Understanding the value received for the funds that are used is increasingly challenging.
Do we have to say that the "brand value" is inexorably becoming a "ball of grey" as it constantly morphs from one cost cutting vector to another in the ongoing effort to bolster the bottom line.
Is it a surprise for the consumer to gravitate towards the lowest cost denominator since its all a complex ball of grey.
What do you think?