Welcome to the time machine! We bring you a weekly update on what’s going on in the hard tech world over the past week. This article is a summary of important information in the field of green economy.
WM Motor, Faraday Future all take pay cuts
Mobileye jumps 38% on first day
Tesla’s big price cut sparks dissatisfaction with old car owners
EU to ban gasoline-powered cars by 2035
The first domestic large aircraft C919 was delivered to China Eastern Airlines in December
Pay cuts and bankruptcy, pick one
This week, the new car-building forces have not had a good time.
According to people familiar with the matter, Wang Yilun, the head of the intelligent driving AI algorithm of Lili Auto and the chief AI scientist, will resign in the near future. He is currently handing over work and is expected to leave at the end of the month. The reason for his departure may be related to the company’s internal research and development pressure. (36 krypton, 2022.10.25)
Wang Yilun was a senior expert of Huawei Auto BU. He joined Li Auto at the end of 2020 when Li Auto was fully developing its own algorithms, and was responsible for the research and development of AI algorithms such as intelligent driving perception and maps, but at that time Li Li had only 60 people in the intelligent driving team. Although the team has expanded to 700 people, it is still the smallest compared to Xiaopeng with 1,500 people and Weilai with 1,000 people.
Ideal can’t retain talent, and WM Motor and Faraday Future have encountered financial problems.
Since October, WM Motor’s executives have taken the initiative to reduce their salary by 50%, and grassroots employees are only paid 70% of their salary. If executives cut their salaries in order to overcome the difficulties together, then the delay in paying the salaries of grassroots employees shows that WM Motor’s financial problems are not small. The Weimar M7, which was expected to be delivered in the second half of this year, was also delayed due to cash flow problems. (Interface News, 2022.10.25) Although some sources said that WM Motor did not break the cash flow, but the cash flow was scattered in the related companies, which caused the main company’s cash flow to be tight. (
Power Plant, 2022.10.28
), but under the triple blow of public controversy, poor financial conditions and a cold market performance, the days are hard.
While Faraday Future has recently secured new funding, cash remains tight. The company had a cash balance of $39 million as of Sept. 21, down from $47 million at the end of August. To conserve more cash, Faraday Future announced a 25% pay cut for all employees starting in November. Separately, the company cut dozens of jobs earlier this month. (Sina Technology, 2022.10.26)
Car companies are still like this, and self-driving companies are even worse.
Mobileye, which missed a good time and lost 60% of its valuation, finally went public on October 26, but the shares in this public offering only accounted for 5% of Mobileye’s total share capital, far lower than the 10% and 20% of conventional IPOs. On the first day of listing, it closed up 37.95%, which was not bad, but fell 5.42% on the second day.
Argo AI, which Ford and Volkswagen jointly invested in, simply shut down. The company has been a disaster for Ford, which reported a net loss of $827 million in the third quarter of this year, including a $2.7 billion non-cash pre-tax impairment on its investment in Argo AI. However, the two investors have done their best and expressed their willingness to accept some Argo AI employees. (Reuters, 2022.10.26)
Ford and Volkswagen are more concerned about assisted driving functions that can be commercialized in a short time, but Argo AI is obsessed with realizing L4-level fully autonomous driving. That’s cheaper than Mobileye, which, after losing Argo AI, plans to expand its partnership with Mobileye, and is likely to be a partner in Volkswagen’s future self-driving taxi service. (Financial Network, 2022.10.28)
These news are also worth watching
Car company dynamics
A bunch of Tesla
Tesla lowered the price of Model 3 and Model Y in mainland China by 14,000 yuan to 40,000 yuan, causing some old car owners to be dissatisfied (Cain Association, 2022.10.24)
Tesla recalls 24,000 Model 3 cars due to seat belt assembly problems
Therefore, the US Department of Justice is launching a criminal investigation into Tesla’s assisted driving system for the more than ten crashes involving Tesla’s Autopilot system (Financial Associated Press, 2022.10.27)
Xiaopeng Motors plans to move towards fully autonomous and driverless driving from 2025, and expects to start Robotaxi test operations as early as 2023 (Interface News, 2022.10.24)
Faraday Future announced the appointment of Yun Han as Chief Accounting Officer and Acting Chief Financial Officer, effective October 25, 2022. The company also announced that it has received the entire previously announced $55 million financing as scheduled, and expects to receive the first $10 million under the previously announced $60 million financing agreement this week (Jiji News, 2022.10.27)
The European Commission, the European Parliament and member states have reached an agreement to ban the production of new gasoline-powered vehicles from 2035, in addition to requiring EU automakers to achieve zero-emission targets by 2035 (Reuters, 27 October 2022)
Volkswagen very obediently announced that it will stop selling gasoline vehicles in Europe between 2033 and 2035 (BusinessTimes, 2022.10.27)
Beijing Benz expands the recall of a total of 11,400 EQA, EQB and EQC electric vehicles due to manufacturing deviation of electric drive modules and insufficient cooling system sealing (IT Home, 2022.10.28)
Due to chip shortage, Toyota no longer vigorously develops smart keys, and reverts to mechanical keys (Reuters, 2022.10.27)
Swedish truck maker Volvo said it will start producing battery modules at its truck plant in Ghent, Belgium with an initial investment of 75 million euros in 2025 (MorningStar, 2022.10.26)
A subsidiary of Australian mining company Europe Lithium Ltd. will go public in the US through a SPAC. The company owns a lithium mine in Wolfsburg, Austria, with an annual output of 10,500 tons, which is expected to become the first major source of battery-grade lithium concentrate in Europe (Bloomberg, 2022.10.25)
On Thursday, local time, Australian lithium miner Core Lithium issued a statement that the off-take terms agreement signed with Tesla for the purchase of lithium mines has expired on October 26 local time, and the two parties have not been able to finalize the final agreement (Reuters, 2022.10) .27)
The first domestically produced large aircraft C919 will be delivered to China Eastern Airlines in December, priced at 653 million yuan (IT Home, 2022.10.25)
Boeing cuts 737 Max aircraft delivery plan for the second time this year, and is expected to deliver 375 aircraft this year (Jiji News, 2022.10.27)