This is the monthly online newsletter for the car club council. All car hobbyist events are listed on this site under "Calendar." Just click on the link above to view the list of car shows and other activities.
Happy New Year and let's hope it is better than the last two. Things are slowly returning to the 2019 normal. Motor Trend did cancel the International Auto Show this February but other than that every event that you are used to going to during the first few months of the year is back. A couple of events, like some restaurants are gone forever.
This January a new General Assembly session with a new governor will take place. I am looking forward to seeing what changes the Assembly and governor make this year. We are going to get a "tax rebate" because we were overtaxed during the pandemic. I expect there will be some changes in the gasoline tax to make gasoline prices lower. The price of gas and inflation has been cited as some of the country's biggest problems.
The bad news is that in December the Virginia Air Pollution Control Board has made a big change. Enabled by legislation from the Northam administration we now have to go by whatever California says on our vehicles. This means that we will have more hybrids, electrics and fewer gas/diesel vehicles to buy due to an ever-increasing percentage of new car sales be certified as low emission or zero emission by the California Air Resources Board. Plus we can look forward to no gas/diesel vehicles allowed to be sold starting in 2035. Okay, this is stupid to allow California to make decisions for us. At least one lawyer has written an online article stating that this is unconstitutional. Legislation allowed this to happen with no reviews, no notice and no public input. What could stop this? New legislation or even cutting the budget needed to implement this nonsense. We'll see how the new administration in Richmond handles this.
It's a new year so get in your events. First sent it, first posted. The seasonal cruise-ins will be posted in February - you can send in any time and I will put them online the first of February. Enjoy your new year.
It's the year of the Tiger
The next meeting will be Monday, January 24th at 6:30 PM at Bella Italia, 6407 Iron Bridge Place, Chesterfield, VA 23234-5265, phone 804 743 1116. The General Assembly will be in session and we will discuss the bills and the new governor's direction for the state.
Dues Are Due During January
Please send your annual council dues in during January or pay at the January meeting on the 24th. You may make the check out to CCCCVA for $10 and mail to Fred Fann, 15628 Rowlett Road, Chesterfield, VA 23838. Thanks for being a member and supporting the council.
Car Show Location
I am the owner of Smiley's Ice Cream in Bridgewater, VA. We just moved into our new shop in October and I built it with lots of parking and grassy areas for overflow parking. We have grassy overflow parking, dust-proof gravel parking, and paved parking. In the past, we have had people ask us if they could do a car show at our new shop once it opened but I'm new to this idea and have never hosted a car show before.
I didn't know if there were any car groups throughout the state that were looking for a great, new location, to host their show? If you would like more information about our new shop you can visit www.smileysicecream.com or I can send you pictures if needed.
Any assistance you may offer would be great!
Thank You for your continued support by publicizing our club activities in your events listing!!
The Classic Cruisers Car Club of Yorktown successful 2021 season organized, sponsored, and held over 27 Saturday Night Cruise ins & 3 Car Shows that brought free family entertainment to our neighbors and visitors, and through these events- raised over $20,000 for local charities. The Club also brought their classic cars to bring joy and smiles to residents and health workers with 8 visits to local retirement/rehabilitation facilities, and participation in community venues such as the Yorktown Vintage Fair, Phoebus Holiday Market, and the Yorktown Christmas Market on Main Street. .
Our cruise in season resumes in April 2022.
Best Wishes for a Blessed Christmas, Holiday Season, and Happy New Year!
Classic Cruisers Car Club
Help is on its way!
Car Hobbyist News
It’s a new year and the state will soon get new management. Next Governor Youngkin has already made news by telling a business group audience that he intends to withdraw Virginia from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. His decision came two days after Dominion Energy Virginia filed a petition to increase the RGGI tax on its bills by 83 percent next year. He also stated that it was a carbon tax and he was against a tax because it hurts Virginians. Current Governor Northam has announced that he is not going to push TCI which would have increased gas prices. Increasing gasoline prices and thereby inflation has become politically out of fashion.
I have heard from a friend who is a lobbyist at the General Assembly that the Republicans plan to try to undo what has been done the last couple of years by the Democrat majority. The problem with that is the Senate is still in control of the Democrats and they have stacked some key committees to try and hold onto what they got done under the Northam administration. I have checked the LIS system for bills and so far none have been introduced that would affect the car hobby. The council will keep an eye on the bills as they get introduced into the new session and info you of anything interesting. In fact watching the General Assembly this year will certainly be interesting.
On the federal level the “Build Back Better” bill has been stalled along with over a half a trillion dollars for climate legislation. Recently VP Harris revealed the administration’s plan for electric charging stations. This is from the Altoona Mirror:
“The Biden administration released an ambitious federal strategy Monday to build 500,000 charging stations for electric vehicles across the country and bring down the cost of electric cars with the goal of transforming the U.S. auto industry.
“The future of transportation in our nation and around the world is electric,” Vice President Kamala Harris said at an EV charging facility in suburban Maryland.
The $1 trillion infrastructure law President Joe Biden signed last month authorizes a nationwide network of charging stations and sets aside $5 billion for states to build them, including $63 million for Maryland. The law also provides an additional $2.5 billion for local grants to support charging stations in rural areas and in disadvantaged communities.
Biden’s $2 trillion social and environmental policy bill, now pending in the Senate, includes a $7,500 tax credit to lower the cost of electric vehicles.
“We want to make electric vehicles accessible for everyone,” Harris said. “Absolutely make it accessible for everyone and easy. Just like filling up your car with gas.”
The auto industry already is moving toward electric vehicles, Harris added: “We need to make the shift faster and make sure it is driven by the United States.”
When public chargers are installed in rural, urban or suburban neighborhoods, “we make it easier for people to go electric,” Harris said, adding that the biggest barrier most people cite to buying an electric car is “figuring out where and how to charge it.”
People who live in apartments may not have a private driveway where they can install a plug, she said, while rural residents may have to drive miles to the nearest charger.”
Keep in mind all of this is now stalled and Congress is not going to take it up until it meets again in January.
The big problem is inflation. The build back better plan will contribute to inflation along with increasing the debt. No one wants to make inflation worse. The Biden administration did dip into the oil reserves to lower gasoline prices. As one expert put it – it doesn’t make sense to go into the reserves that cost $30 a barrel to temporarily lower gasoline prices when we may have to pay $80 a barrel to supply the reserves.
Gas prices are at a 20-year high. Jerry Simmons, the president of the Domestic Energy Producers Alliance (DEPA) says that the Biden administration’s reliance on imports is a greater contributor to the increased costs of oil and gas. According to the most recent data from the Labor Department’s Consumer Price Index, October saw a 30 percent increase in the price of all sources of energy, while the price of gasoline itself increased by 49.6 percent. The Biden administration has blamed the high gas prices on increased demand and a lack of supply from foreign sources. Simmons said the Biden administration’s rush to “green energy” will also make the U.S. energy-dependent. He said that the demand for energy is going to increase, and electric, wind, and solar energy can’t meet those needs. “Everything in this country is cleaner and better because of the way we do business, and that we’re required to do this. The other countries aren’t,” he said. “If you want to produce the cleanest barrel of oil and the cleanest cubic foot of natural gas, you produce it in this country, not any other country.”
So we have the General Assembly session and the new session of Congress to look forward to in the new year. And I can assure you it will be interesting. And now I have saved the worse for last: “The Virginia Air Pollution Control Board, acting not with discretion but on orders from the General Assembly, voted December 2 to adopt Advanced Clean Cars Program regulations that delegate ultimate control to the California Air Resources Board. Virginia will simply follow Sacramento’s lead in dictating an ever-increasing percentage of new car sales be certified as low emission or zero emission by the CARB. Legally it would be similar to Virginia being forced to comply with federal regulations, except these rules will come from and be amended by California and its governor, regulators and legislature. Who in Virginia gets to vote for them? No one. Legislation in 2021 directed the Air Pollution Control Board to adopt these rules with no deference to the regulatory processes. If you missed the usual public notices or hotly-contested public hearings, it may be because they didn’t happen. Media coverage has also been sparse.”
You can read more about it below this article and scroll down further for an article written by a lawyer who says the regulation is unconstitutional and could be fought in court. We’ll see what the new administration does about this.
How California Now Controls Virginia Auto Market
By Stephen D. Haner, Senior Fellow with the Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy.
Virginia’s automotive sales market is now officially controlled in Sacramento, with the likelihood that no new internal combustion engines can be sold in the Commonwealth after 2035.
The Virginia Air Pollution Control Board, acting not with discretion but on orders from the General Assembly, voted December 2 to adopt Advanced Clean Cars Program regulations that delegate ultimate control to the California Air Resources Board. Virginia will simply follow Sacramento’s lead in dictating an ever-increasing percentage of new car sales be certified as low emission or zero emission by the CARB.
Legally it would be similar to Virginia being forced to comply with federal regulations, except these rules will come from and be amended by California and its governor, regulators and legislature. Who in Virginia gets to vote for them? No one.
Legislation in 2021 directed the Air Pollution Control Board to adopt these rules with no deference to the regulatory processes. If you missed the usual public notices or hotly-contested public hearings, it may be because they didn’t happen. Media coverage has also been sparse.
Low emission (think hybrid) and zero emission (generally electric) vehicles are popular with many buyers already and will likely continue to be subsidized in various ways. Their prevalence was going to grow regardless. But it is California’s goal to ban the sale of internal combustion vehicles and perhaps even low emission hybrids by 2035, as expressed in an executive order from its governor.
If and when that happens, under this new regulation it also happens in Virginia. No local action is required. Perhaps that explains this ecstatic quote from the meeting reported by the Virginia Mercury:
“That is a very significant regulation. It will have a very positive impact on Virginia’s environment,” Mike Dowd, chief of the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality’s Air Division, told the board after the measure’s passage. “If it wasn’t against state personnel regulations, I’d be popping a bottle of champagne now.”
It was the language in the 2021 bill that overrode the Administrative Process Act’s required reviews and public input that made this rocket adoption possible. That and Section 177 of the federal Clean Air Act, which made it possible for a) California to adopt fleet emissions standards more stringent than federal rules and b) other states to piggy-back on California’s program.
The Transportation and Climate Initiative, no longer under consideration in the key states, was an effort to control the supply of motor fuels. The CARB program seeks to reduce the burning of fossil fuels by limiting the supply of internal combustion engines. A good explanation of how it works can be found here. Several of the northeastern states that were to join TCI have already aligned with CARB before Virginia did.
The CARB program applies to the manufacturers, grants them “credits” for the sale of certified LEV and ZEV new cars, and then demands they must expend credits in order to sell uncertified cars. Over time, the number of allowed uncertified internal combustion cars is to ratchet down. If a manufacturer doesn’t need credits for gasoline cars (think Tesla), they become a commodity which can be sold for profit.
The Virginia regulation, which can found on pages 5 through 19 of the agenda for the recent meeting, exempts the sale of used cars, transfers of existing cars, emergency vehicles, military vehicles, or a car sold in Virginia for registration in a state outside the CARB’s reach. Basically it covers new cars and light trucks under 14,000 pounds.
The General Assembly also adopted a state-funded subsidy program for the purchase of electric vehicles but didn’t identify a funding source. With the generous customer rebates on the table, Virginia’s auto dealers joined in pushing for both the subsides and the alignment with CARB. Auto Dealers Association President Don Hall put its arguments in a guest column for the Richmond Times-Dispatch during the session, and also advocated tax-funded charging infrastructure.
“If Virginia wants to emulate California, the commonwealth also must match California’s investment. A conservative estimate of California’s financial commitment to the EV market — primarily through incentives and infrastructure — roughly is $3.5 billion,” Hall wrote. He said Virginia needs to spend $720 million over five years.
Long-term operating costs may or may not offset the bite, but these hybrid and all-electric vehicles right now sell for a premium price over internal combustion vehicles. The financial benefit to auto dealers of forcing manufacturers to build more of the former and fewer of the latter is obvious.
The expected increase in electricity demand and related transmission expansions is not exactly breaking hearts among utility executives, either.
The added gasoline taxes from the abandoned Transportation and Climate Initiative might have paid for the proposed Virginia electric vehicle subsidies or that charging infrastructure. Governor Ralph Northam, who embraced the subsides and this delegation of regulatory control to California, has one more budget to propose next week. Massive federal funds for those purposes are part of the Biden Administration “Build Back Better” proposal languishing in the U.S. Senate.
Northam could use his budget to propose a way to start paying the subsidies with state or federal funding. It will actually be telling if he fails to do so. But no additional state funding is needed to begin to implement the California vehicle fleet rules. It would take new legislation now to prevent it.
Youngkin to Withdraw from RGGI, End Carbon Tax
By Stephen D. Haner, is Senior Fellow for the Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy.
The same people who want us to all use renewable electricity for everything from transportation to cooking want to also raise the price of electricity - doesn't make any sense ~ Fred
Governor-elect Glenn Youngkin told a business group audience Wednesday afternoon that he intends to withdraw Virginia from the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. His decision came two days after Dominion Energy Virginia filed a petition to increase the RGGI tax on its bills by 83 percent next year.
“RGGI describes itself as a regional market for carbon,” Youngkin told a meeting of the Hampton Roads Chamber of Commerce. “But it is really a carbon tax that is fully passed on to ratepayers. It is a bad deal for Virginians. It is a bad deal for business and as governor, I will withdraw us from RGGI by executive action. I promised to lower the cost of living in Virginia and this is just the beginning.”
The Thomas Jefferson Institute for Public Policy sought to dissuade the state from joining RGGI and imposing this carbon tax and has reported on the development and imposition of Dominion’s bill added to collect it. We applaud this decision, knowing that Youngkin may face a struggle to implement it.
Virginia has been part of the interstate tax, cap and trade compact for a year now. Every large electrical generating facility in the state must buy allowances in a multi-state auction equal to the number of tons of carbon dioxide its operations will emit. With the only large fleet of Virginia coal and gas generators, this is basically about Dominion Energy Virginia and its 2.6 million customer accounts.
During the four RGGI allowance auctions held in 2021, Virginia collected about $228 million from the sale of CO2 allowances. Dominion has been buying them since 2020, but in September of this year added a cost line to all of its customer bills to collect that money back from customers, with interest and even some profit.
The State Corporation Commission reviewed and approved an initial charge of $2.39 per 1,000 kilowatt hours of usage, starting this past September, but that was always a backward-looking figure. Allowance costs have been far higher than originally projected by the Governor Ralph Northam administration when it peddled this idea to the General Assembly. The knowing underestimate is also something the Jefferson Institute warned about years ago.
Looking at the 2021 RGGI allowance costs, on December 6 Dominion sent the SCC its first annual update for the special charge on its bills. It wants to increase that $2.39 per 1,000 kWh to $4.37, an 83 percent jump in just one cycle. Even that may not be enough for Dominion to have fully recovered the cost of RGGI allowances it will have used in its first two years.
The first auction in 2021 set a price of $7.60 per ton of CO2 emitted, and by the fourth and final 2021 auction last week that has risen to $13 per ton. Dominion’s new request is based on a projected $10.53 per ton. That won’t cover the full tab going forward and they know it.
All customers pay this tax, of course, not just residential users. All customers of any size pay the same amount, with no volume discount. So $4.37 per kWh represents an even higher percentage of the typical bill for a large industrial or commercial user. The SCC’s process for reviewing this will have to proceed despite Youngkin’s announcement, which at this point is just a proposal. If he succeeds with the withdrawal, Dominion will likely still recover its costs to that point.
The previous governor, Terry McAuliffe, started the process of requiring electric utilities to pay for carbon allowances as a proposed air pollution regulation. The General Assembly split on partisan lines on the proposal with Republicans throwing up roadblocks when they had the votes. Once the Democrats won full control in the 2019 election RGGI proceeded.
The 2020 Virginia Clean Economy Act and other bills “authorized” the executive branch to participate in RGGI and implement the regulation, but no law mandates that Virginia remain in RGGI and continue to require the allowances. The Memorandum of Understanding behind the interstate compact allows for withdrawal by member states upon notice. Regulations can be amended or appealed within the executive branch.
Youngkin’s exact plan or timetable for extraction was not detailed. Other laws passed under Governor Northam create broad goals for reducing or eliminating the use of fossil fuels throughout the Virginia economy, including for power production, and if those transformations take place as planned those higher costs are also coming the way of Virginia consumers.
First out of the box with a comment today was future Speaker of the House Todd Gilbert, R-Shenandoah, praising Youngkin’s decision while also pointing out that Virginia was already reducing its CO2 emissions before any RGGI tax was created.
"When a policy costs the public a significant amount of money for no tangible benefit, that policy should be examined carefully, and if practical, rolled back. Governor-elect Youngkin's announcement is a perfect example of the common-sense decision making we've been missing for the past 8 years," Gilbert wrote.
Chevrolet Silverado EV to Begin Production in Early 2023
From Hagerty: Automotive News is reporting that Chevrolet’s all-electric Silverado EV will begin production in 2023, backing up the timeline it established this summer. That could put the Chevy pickup on the market about a year after Ford’s all-electric Lightning, which is set to go on sale next spring and has already garnered 200,000 reservations. The Silverado EV may not have much in common with its internal combustion siblings, as signs point to production on a similar Ultium battery platform as the Hummer EV.
GMC’s Hummer EV will be the first electric pickup from GM, but it likely won’t have the mainstream appeal of the Silverado EV. Chevy risks losing customers to Ford through conquest sales given that the F-150 Lightning will be the first all-electric pickup to market from one of the Detroit Three. Still, competition is good for the breed, so we’re excited to see the Silverado EV come to market.
Although General Motors tapped the GMC Hummer to spearhead its EV invasion, we knew it wouldn’t be long before Chevy’s stalwart Silverado got involved. Chevy just confirmed that an all-electric Silverado is indeed on the way.
The electric Silverado will join battery-powered pickups from newcomers like Rivian and Bollinger Motors as well as more established players, like the electric Ford F-150. The truck will be built right here in the states, at GM’s new Factory ZERO assembly plant in Hamtramck, Michigan, alongside the Hummer truck and SUV. Like the Hummer siblings—and every other GM EV announced thus far—the new Silverado will ride on GM’s new Ultium platform.
“Chevrolet will take everything Chevy’s loyal truck buyers love about Silverado—and more—and put it into an electric pickup that will delight retail and commercial customers alike,” said Mark Reuss, president of GM.
That last bit has us intrigued. If there’s one group of customers that will immediately sniff out the weaknesses of an EV truck, it’s commercial buyers. For instance: Fully charged, GM estimates that the EV Silverado will offer more than 400 miles of range. That’s likely with the biggest battery pack; expect cheaper, less-potent configurations with shorter ranges as well. The big question: How will, ahem, normal truck duties like towing and hauling affect that best-case-scenario figure? We’d expect the Silverado EV’s 400-mile range to take a dive when lugging a trailer full of lumber.
We could get down with something this brutish wafting along silently under EV power. Chevrolet
It’s worth pointing out that none of these EV pickups are on sale as of this writing—every model seems just out of reach. GM has a tendency to make an EV announcement only to note that the production version is still years away—hello, Cadillac Lyriq—so we’re not holding our breath that the Silverado EV is arriving in showrooms any time in 2021. (GM says the Hummer should be on sale by early 2023—and that’s only the most luxe configuration.) Regardless, it’s good to see GM putting resources towards electrifying one of Americans’ most beloved vehicles. If and when it arrives, a compelling electric pickup would do much to convince the public that EVs are more than urban fashion accessories.
2022 Year of the Tiger
Motor Trend 2022 Truck of the Year
Motor Trend has picked its 2022 Truck of the Year: Rivian R1T - the first time an electric vehicle has been picked as truck of the year. Motor Trend also picked the electric vehicle Lucid Air, produced by the start-up Lucid Group (LCID), as car of the year in November.
Motor Trend Truck of the Year 2022
Motor Trend Car of the Year 2022
What do these two vehicles have in common - you can't buy one yet. But you can preorder both of them. The truck starts at $67,500 for the lowest priced model. The Lucid Air begins at $77,400. You have to wonder why Motor Trend would pick vehicles that you can't go to a dealer and just buy. One would think that is what the Car/Truck of the Year award is about - selling vehicles.
One also has to wonder if those in charge of Motor Trend have money invested in Rivian as its stock soared after the news that the truck was picked. The Lucid Air - investors ignored it. They should have also ignored Rivian stock.
From MSN Autos: "Motor Trend on Monday named the R1T, the first consumer model from electric-vehicle startup Rivian, its 2022 Truck of the Year.
It's never a bad time to win an industry award, but Rivian snagged the "Golden Calipers" at a pivotal time for its business. The Amazon- and Ford-backed startup went public last month and is working diligently to prove to investors that it's a legitimate automaker and a worthy challenger to Tesla, which has dominated the EV market for a decade.
"The Rivian R1T is a monumental achievement and astonishes with a quality of design, engineering, materials, and technology unmatched in trucks today, while providing a driving experience like that of a high-performance luxury car," said Ed Loh, MotorTrend Group's head of editorial.
Rivian launched deliveries of the R1T in September, three years after revealing a prototype to the world at the 2018 Los Angeles Auto Show (see if you can buy one ~ Fred). The $67,500 all-electric pickup aims to be a rugged, more outdoorsy alternative to Tesla's cars and SUVs. It features four-wheel drive, a slew of interesting features, and tremendous off-road capabilities, all wrapped in a sleek, luxurious package.
It's the first electric pickup to hit the road in the modern electric era, beating out upcoming battery-powered trucks from Ford, General Motors, and Tesla. Rivian plans to start delivering an SUV based on the same underpinnings, the R1S, next year."
Okay, we know what is going on here. The powers that be want everyone to drive an electric vehicle. Motor Trend is just helping out with this "trend". Reality is: when will these vehicles actually come to market in serious numbers and will Americans really buy them in serious numbers? Those are the real questions that should be asked of the people at Motor Trend that made these picks. The vehicles that lost are ones that you could actually go out and buy.
I decided to run some old photos this month since there weren't any December show photos - enjoy them
Dragster from the 60s
LED Light Bulbs
LED light bulbs are polarity dependent. It matters which terminals are connected to positive and negative.
Like other diodes, a light emitting diode (LED) needs current to flow in one direction. Some LED light bulbs may have additional circuitry to reverse the current if necessary, but especially with automotive LED bulbs, it is a good idea to test the bulb to make sure it works (switch the terminal connections if it does not light up) before reassembling the dash, reinstalling the taillight, etc.
Finland Man Blows Up His Tesla Car After Facing $22,000 Replacement Battery Bill
From Epoch Times
A man in Finland has blown up his Tesla vehicle with 66 pounds of dynamite in defiance over the cost of a new battery after he was faced with a $22,000 repair bill.
Tuomas Katainen, who lives in Jaala village in south Finland’s Kymenlaakso, exploded his 2012 Tesla Model S at a former quarry in a video uploaded to YouTube.
The Tesla S model 2012 cost around $57,400 to $77,400 when it was released.
Tesla’s warranty covers battery replacements if the capacity drops below 70 percent within 150,000 miles or eight years of purchase, leaving some owners of the older models facing large repair bills.
The video, which is over eight minutes long, shows Katainen and a group of people loading the car with the dynamite before notably placing a dummy with Elon Musk’s face on it inside the car.
The vehicle then explodes into pieces amid a rather serene and picturesque scene of snowy mountains.
“When I bought that Tesla, the first 1,500 km were nice. It was an excellent car. Then error codes hit. So I ordered the tow truck to take my car in for a service. So the car was at a Tesla dealer’s workshop for about a month. Finally, I got a call that they cannot do anything for my car and that the only option is to change the whole battery cell,” Katainen said in the YouTube video.
“The cost would be at least 20,000 € ($22,000), and permission to operation has to ask Tesla. So I told them that I’m coming to pick up the Tesla. Now I’m going to explode the whole car because apparently there is no guarantee or anything,” he added.
Tesla Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk—who has said he will pay more than $11 billion in taxes this year—is the world’s richest person with an estimated net worth of $244.2 billion, according to Forbes’ real-time billionaire’s list.
Battery issues are not the only problems Tesla vehicle users have encountered, as safety issues have also been raised over a number of the vehicle’s features, including its autonomous driving features.
In August, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) opened a formal probe into Tesla’s Autopilot and full self-driving (FSD) systems following nearly a dozen crashes with parked emergency vehicles that left one person dead and injured 17 others.
According to an NHTSA document issued on Aug. 13 , the agency’s Office of Defects Investigation was probing 765,000 Tesla vehicles—Models Y, X, S, and 3, from model years 2014 to 2021. On Aug. 31, that investigation was expanded to cover a 12th incident (pdf).
In October, Tesla withdrew its latest version of its FSD beta software just one day after it was released after noting “some issues,” and said it would roll the software back to version 10.2 for now.
While Musk didn’t specifically mention what the issues were, he noted that Tesla’s internal quality assurance had found problems with some left turns at traffic lights.
“Regression in some left turns at traffic lights found by internal QA in 10.3. Fix in work, probably releasing tomorrow,” Musk said at the time.
Earlier this month, the NHTSA said it was in discussions with Tesla to replace cameras in some U.S.-made vehicles after it was made aware of an issue related to faulty Autopilot cameras.
The Tesla CEO said this month that no other CEO on the planet cares as much about safety as he does and insisted that he had not misled Tesla’s customers about the company’s self-driving technology, including Autopilot and FSD, and any potential risks to their safety.
Musk has sold nearly $14 billion worth of Tesla stock since November and the electric vehicle maker is worth about $1 trillion.
Electric Car Memes 4
Delegating Emission Standards to California Is Unconstitutional
From Bacon's Rebellion. Written by Emilio Jaksetic, a retired lawyer.
As Steve Haner noted in a December 10 post, “Now California Will Control Virginia’s Auto Sales,” the Virginia Air Pollution Control Board (VAPCB) adopted a regulation that places ultimate control of Virginia’s vehicle emission standards in the hands of the California Air Resources Board. Although the VAPCB acted pursuant to a statute enacted by the General Assembly in 2021, the regulation is unconstitutional.
Such a conclusion may seem odd given that the VACPB regulation was issued as a result of ostensibly valid steps. First, the General Assembly has the authority to set vehicle emission standards for Virginia. Second, the General Assembly has the authority to delegate to VAPCB administrative responsibility to implement the vehicle emission standards set by the General Assembly. Third, there does not appear to be any procedural irregularity in the VAPCB’s issuance of the vehicle emission regulation. However, those three actions culminated in a regulation that violates the Virginia Constitution.
Legislative power is vested in the General Assembly. Virginia Constitution, Article IV, Section 1. Although that power is broad, it is not unlimited; the General Assembly’s power to legislate is constrained by the Virginia Constitution and the U.S. Constitution. Terry v. Mazur, 362 S.E.2d 904, 908 (1987).
The General Assembly can delegate legislative powers to executive branch administrative agencies, subject to any “express or necessarily implied prohibitions arising from the Constitution of Virginia or the United States Constitution.” Elizabeth River Crossings OPCO LLC v. Meeks, 749 S.E.2d 176, 188 (2013). Furthermore, “[The Virginia Supreme Court] has uniformly held that the power to exercise legislative authority may not be removed from the control of the local legislative representatives of the people.” County of Fairfax v. Fleet Industrial Park Limited Partnership, 410 S.E.2d 669, 672 (1991). And Virginia officials cannot agree “to contract away, abridge, or weaken any sovereign right” or “barter away, or in any manner abridge or weaken” any of Virginia’s sovereign powers. Taylor v. Northam (Virginia Supreme Court, September 2, 2021) at 23 (citing earlier decisions). See also Elizabeth River Crossings OPCO LCC v. Meeks, 749 S.E. 2d at 194-195 (a statute cannot empower public entities to abridge the Commonwealth’s constitutional police power).
The California Air Resources Board operates under the jurisdiction and control of California law. Under the reasoning of County of Fairfax v. Fleet Industrial Park Limited Partnership, the VAPCB’s regulation is unconstitutional because it removes control of Virginia vehicle emission standards from officials accountable to the people of Virginia and places it in the hands of a California administrative agency.
Furthermore, although the General Assembly can delegate power to the VAPCB to administer vehicle emission standards in Virginia, nothing in the Virginia Supreme Court’s decision in Elizabeth River Crossings OPCO LLC states, suggests, or implies that (1) the General Assembly can delegate legislative powers to executive branch administrative agencies of another State; or (2) the VAPCB can delegate any authority given to it by the General Assembly to an administrative entity in another State. To the contrary, any delegation by the General Assembly or the VAPCB to an administrative agency of another State would fall within a necessarily implied prohibition of the Virginia Constitution. Why? Because any such delegation would have the practical effect of
(a) surrendering a portion of the sovereignty of the people of Virginia (Virginia Constitution, Article I, Section 2; and U.S. Constitution, 10th Amendment) to the control of another State;
(b) giving control of Virginia’s police power over vehicle emissions to another State; and
(c) forcing Virginians to make vehicle purchases constrained by legal standards set by another State, including future amendments and changes made to those legal standards without any consultation with, or consent by, the General Assembly.
The reliance of the General Assembly and VAPCB on Section 177 of the Federal Clean Air Act does not remove their actions from the strictures of the Virginia Constitution. Under U.S. Constitution, Article VI, Clause 2, federal laws enacted pursuant to the U.S. Constitution have supremacy over State law (including State constitutions). However, Section 177 of the Federal Clean Air Act does not require or compel any State to adopt California’s vehicle emission standards. It merely states that a State may decide to follow the example of California with respect to vehicle emission standards, and by doing so a State can avoid having to submit its proposed emission standards to the Environmental Protection Agency for review. Nothing in Section 177 requires a State to make a decision to adopt California’s emission standards in a manner that violates its State constitution.
There is an important legal distinction that the General Assembly and the VAPCB ignored or failed to recognize.
It is not unconstitutional per se for the General Assembly to decide a specific law of another State is worthy of emulation. The General Assembly has the constitutional authority to enact a statute that copies a specific existing statute of another State pertaining to vehicle emission standards. However, the General Assembly has no constitutional authority to enact a statute that (1) gives another State de facto control of Virginia law pertaining to vehicle emission standards, (2) allows future changes in the other State’s regulations on vehicle emission standards to automatically be applied to Virginians without express ratification through the Virginia legislative process to each of the future changes, or (3) is otherwise violative of the Virginia Constitution.
There is no reason to doubt that the General Assembly acted with good intentions when it enacted the 2021 statute to regulate vehicle emissions. But, good intentions and administrative convenience do not justify or excuse legislation that results in a violation of the Virginia Constitution.
From The Jefferson Institute: "Over at Bacon’s Rebellion, Emilio Jaksetic argues that the action is unconstitutional (here). But until it is litigated by someone with standing, under proposed California regulations 100 percent of light vehicles sold in California must be zero emissions vehicles by 2035. That is now the target in Virginia, placing an equally bright target on the backs of car buyers."
1958 Ranchero towing a 41 Willys
What is Vegan leather? What used to be called a vinyl interior may be referred to as vegan leather, leatherette or another marketing term on newer vehicles. Newer vinyl fabrics look more like leather, better dissipate heat/moisture, may include recycled plastics and offer other advantages compared to the vinyl seats and tops on our favorite cars from the '60s and '70s. Vegan leather has been used in 1971-1973 Ford Mustang, 2002 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 and even the 2010 Blue Bird All American school bus.
Canada may want to rethink opening its border to Americans after Vivian Richards, 48, of Oakland Park, Florida, tried to smuggle 56 guns into Sarnia, Ontario, in the trunk of her car on Nov. 1. Richards was referred for secondary inspection, DH News reported, after officers of the Canada Border Services Agency looked in her trunk. Along with the firearms, they found 13 overcapacity magazines, 43 pistol magazines and 100 rounds of ammunition. She faces several charges, including possession for the purpose of weapons trafficking.
Missouri man Kyle Scheele, with the help of friends, made a cardboard cutout of himself "jamming out with a pizza guitar" and advertising something called the "Kyle Scheele Meal." He then placed the cutout in a local gas station and waited to see how long his prank would last. But after the fake ad went viral on TikTok, convenience store chain Kum & Go made the Scheele Meal real. It included a Red Bull and a pizza sandwich, "which is just two pieces of pizza smashed face-to-face," Scheele said. The promotion ran for about a week, with Kum & Go donating $2 of every $5 meal to the charity No Kid Hungry.
Dale Wheeler, a 56-year-old IT worker from Morrisville, North Carolina, crashed his car just four miles away from his home on Nov. 12 and then disappeared, The Raleigh News and Observer reported. Officers responding to the crash found the keys still in the car, along with "a little bit of blood." Wheeler was reported missing after not showing up for work for two days, but it was almost two weeks before anyone saw him again. On Nov. 28, someone called police to do a welfare check at Wheeler's home and found him there, alert and conscious. He was taken to a hospital, where he explained that he had walked away from the accident but went back to find his phone, then was lost in the woods for nearly two weeks before finding his way home. Police said an investigation is ongoing.
A female passenger who choked and took a chomp out of the neck of an Uber driver today pleaded guilty to a pair of criminal charges in connection with the bloody, unprovoked attack, according to court records. In a plea deal, Michele Stilwell copped to battery and disorderly conduct, misdemeanors for which she was sentenced to 18 months probation. Stilwell, seen at right, was originally charged in a criminal information with battery and witness tampering, a felony. Stilwell, a licensed practical nurse, was also fined $850, directed to undergo a mental health evaluation, and ordered to have no contact with Michael Hassey, the 23-year-old victim. As reported in criminal complaints, Stilwell attacked Hassey from behind as he drove his Toyota near Stilwell’s St. Petersburg residence in mid-April. While the car was moving, Stilwell “reached forward and proceeded to choke the victim from behind,” according to a sheriff’s deputy. As seen above, Stilwell initially choked Hassey with two hands before wrapping an arm around his throat. As Hassey sought to pull over the car, Stilwell “managed to crawl forward onto the center console...and bite the victim deeply on the neck drawing blood.” She then scratched Hassey across the chest, “causing a large red in color mark with traces of blood visible.” Photos taken by witnesses--who stepped in to stop the attack--show Stilwell choking Hassey and splayed across the Toyota’s driver’s seat. Another image shows the bite mark on Hassey’s neck. While police and court records do not cite a motive for the Saturday afternoon attack, arrest affidavits note that Stilwell displayed an “indication of alcohol influence.”
A motorist who has a Tesla logo tattooed on his face was driving a 1992 minivan when he was arrested Friday on a felony DUI count and multiple vehicular charges, according to Illinois police. Jordan Lindsey, 25, was behind the wheel of a GMC Safari that crashed Thursday evening on Route 83 in Elmhurst, a city 20 miles west of Chicago. A Circuit Court complaint describes the 10 PM accident as a “single vehicle roll-over.” Lindsey, seen at right, was arrested on a felony aggravated DUI count since he was driving with a suspended license due to a previous drunk driving conviction. He was also charged with driving an uninsured vehicle, driving an unregistered vehicle, failure to reduce speed to avoid a crash, and driving with a suspended license. Lindsey was booked into the DuPage County jail, from which he was later released on bond. He is scheduled for a December 20 court appearance. The Wisconsin native, who lives a few miles outside Elmhurst, has a pending misdemeanor disorderly conduct case and a rap sheet with a multitude of vehicular convictions. Judging by his face, Lindsey is a Tesla fan, though it does not appear as if he owns one of the electric vehicles. Lindsey’s main ride is a 30-year-old maroon minivan that seats eight and, when new, got an average of 16 miles per gallon. Production of the GMC Safari was discontinued in 2005.
An accused auto burglar told cops that he broke into a vehicle so that he could “see his imaginary girlfriend Emma,” with whom he visits while “tripping on meth,” according to a Florida police report. Matthew Huber, 43, was arrested Tuesday evening after witnesses spotted him attempting to burglarize a Nissan truck parked outside a Walmart in Vero Beach. During police questioning, Huber reportedly admitted to opening the vehicle’s tailgate and “looking for something to take.” Huber, seen above, explained that he intended to then “sell those things for some meth, so he can see Emma.” Huber explained to cops that he was “attempting to get in the vehicle to see his imaginary girlfriend Emma,” adding that he only sees Emma “when he’s tripping on meth.”
Huber was arrested for burglary and carrying a concealed weapon--a butterfly knife--during the commission of a criminal offense. He is locked up on $10,000 bond on the two felony counts. Huber’s rap sheet includes convictions for grand theft, robbery, narcotics possession, and possession of drug paraphernalia.
The two most famous Chevrolet cars—the Camaro and the Corvette—are for sale in Japan, and there’s a special 2022 Camaro just for JDM buyers. The “Wild Cherry Edition” Camaro is a color-and-trim package reminiscent of the JDM Camaro Heritage Edition from 2020, except with a more limited production run (10 units instead of 90) and a single trim level: the entry-level LT/RS coupe, with a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-pot making 271 horses. This Wild Cherry Edition is finished in a “special deep red limited color” with silver rally stripes and a black interior with Adrenaline Red accents. This rare bird has an MSRP of 5,990,000 yen (about $52,600), which is 300,000 yen (roughly $2600) more than a regular LT/RS coupe. The GM Japan press release concludes with, in the words of Google Translate, a promise that: “We will deliver a special time to unleash your heart.”
Drive Pilot, Mercedes-Benz’s automated driving system, has been granted the green light in Germany. From the first half of 2022 customers in the company’s home country will be able to drive hands-free on over 8000 miles of motorway. Don’t worry, robot-piloted Benzes won’t be bombing along at breakneck velocities on the unrestricted autobahns as the system is limited to a speed of 60 kmh (37 mph), so Drive Pilot can only be used in heavy traffic currently. Under those conditions, the car takes over and allows the driver to look at emails or even shop on the car’s central display. Drive Pilot makes uses of Mercedes’ standard Driver Assistance sensors with the addition of LiDAR, an extra rear view camera, and microphones which will listen out for emergency service sirens. Should the driver fail to take back control when traffic clears the car will be brought to halt, hazard warning lights activated and an emergency call will be made automatically. Germany is the first country to legalize this Level 3 autonomous driving, allowing Mercedes-Benz to get its system on the road. The company is also testing in China and the U.S. and Mercedes says as soon as these countries create a legal framework, Drive Pilot will be made available. The very limited operational window in Germany seems like a sensible first step towards autonomy, although the idea of working or shopping while on the road still fills us with horror.
Blaine, Minnesota police said they responded to a call from an elderly couple on Dec. 6. The couple said they had ordered groceries that were supposed to be delivered through the Instacart service. They told police that when they went outside to meet their delivery driver, she screamed at them to check a note she had left in a Christmas wreath on their front door. The note was written on the receipt from the couple’s grocery order. “Instacart doesn’t pay employees, [sorry] find another slave,” it allegedly said. “F*** the racist police pigs.” The couple told police they witnessed the woman drive her car forwards and backwards in the driveway multiple times. When she finally left, the couple said they realized she had run over their groceries. Blaine Police Chief Brian Podany said he believes the driver’s hostility stemmed from a pro-police sign in the couple’s front yard. Instacart has condemned the driver’s actions and ensured she will no longer deliver for the service.
A nationwide shortage of plow drivers is causing several state transportation departments to rethink their snow removal operations and recruitment efforts. Transportation officials say factors causing the shortage include more drivers approaching retirement age, difficulty in filling vacancies, long hours, comparatively low wages, and competition from the private sector offering better pay.
Baby has a car seat
Repair Mistakes & Blunders
From Rock Auto
In college, back in the 70s, I had an old beat-up '57 Chevy. Its most redeeming quality was that it ran---at least most of the time!
One hot Texas, 100 plus degree day, I knew that the battery was all but drained, but not to worry. I had plenty of friends that would help me push-start it. About noon, we started out. Since there were five of us, I was not needed to push - just steer.
We pushed it a block; it did not start. We pushed it around the corner and down another block; it did not start. The guys were getting really tired, and it was HOT! Finally, when we had gone all around the block and were back at our original starting point, one of the guys yelled, "Do you have the key on?"
Without replying, I sheepishly turned on the key. BOOM! it went, as all that unburned gasoline exploded out the tailpipe.
I was looking in the mirror, and you should have seen those guys dance around with the most panicked looks on their faces. I also heard some words that I cannot repeat here!
Moral, if it will not start, always make sure the key is turned on!
Gary in Texas
1963 Texas license plate
Why is The Automotive Repair Industry in Need of So Much Repair Itself?
Nightmare stories about crooked or incapable shops aren’t anything new, but even for me, it seems increasingly tough to find reliable proprietors of some the more menu-item kind of work. Changing tires, alignments, A/C recharging—the kind of stuff that doesn’t require a hardcore diagnostic adventure to complete the service. Line work common to a technician’s skillsets. Friends increasingly reach out to me for advice on chaotic interactions with service writers more often than questions about whether the mechanical problem is this-or-that. And as much as I want to write this off as mere anecdote or a symptom of cathartic bias, it’s hard to ignore the surface cracks indicating trouble within the foundation of the automotive repair industry. Are shops under more stress and tension than they can handle?
Blaming the pandemic is the blanket answer, naturally, and is playing a role in some aspects of service quality. The troubling reality, however, is that customer satisfaction within the automotive industry was already on the decline, according to experts, and it strongly coincides with a deep-rooted shortage of qualified labor. Notably, the rate of skilled technicians coming into the industry to replace retiring baby boomers has not been on balance for decades. My two cents? Like an artist, a tech needs to be given the best environment possible to succeed in order to meet the customer’s expectations.
So why the decrease in satisfaction of customers and technicians alike? According to data from the American Customer Satisfaction Index, the industry as a whole has seen a decline over the past decade when it comes to keeping those walking into the lobby happy, especially regarding domestic brands. Recalls, parts shortages, extended lead and repair times—all of these negatives stack up and are compounded by systemic problems within fixed operations. The technician shortage has had the biggest ripples.
If we look at the labor pool in the automotive repair industry as just that, a reservoir, it would be one in drought, losing water quicker than it is being replenished. The simple fact of the matter here is that there are not enough new technicians entering and staying committed to the field to backfill those who are retiring and leaving the industry with decades of busted knuckles. The longstanding issue is the departure of tenured talent, and getting beyond the simple answer of age, certain factors are greasing the downward slide. A big one is the lack of benefits. Two weeks of vacation is still often reserved for techs after their first year, which discourages workers from jumping ship to better dealership or shop as they may not be able to afford giving up their accrued weeks to start over with a new employer. The healthcare situation isn’t great either, with underwhelming insurance for what remains a physically demanding job imparting significant wear and tear on a tech’s body over their career. Need to go to a doctor’s appointment some time during your first year at a new gig? One fewer vacation day, my friend.
Let’s talk about compensation. There’s a notable discrepancy in pay when compared to other roles in an independent repair or dealer setting, wherein service advisers, finance officers, and sales staff can earn higher pay rates than techs. These other roles can clear six figures in some markets (median income for technicians is around $65,000) without the rigorous training and certifications required of techs, who also have to front the cost of new tools.
On top of all this, long-tenured techs are choosing retirement over the time and training investment to service the rapidly evolving alternative powertrains in modern vehicles, such as EVs (at least in the short-term). This situation is creating an arms race for equipment and knowledge. Modern technicians are no longer just mechanics but must also harness computer and electrical engineering knowledge. Beyond that, flat-rate/flag-hour based pay is becoming less popular with today’s more complicated vehicles and, in many cases, less profitable as manufacturers revise their labor books with fewer calculated labor hours for some jobs. The OEMs are citing efficiencies in some new repair process, which results in less pay to the tech rather than further encouraging quick work through more profitable jobs for the given labor rate. Worse, too, is the fact that many factors well outside a tech’s control can affect his or her paycheck greatly: think service advisor politics, parts shortages, and tricky diagnostic adventures (which often aren’t paid based on the time spent figuring the problem out, meaning more difficult jobs can suck a tech’s pay down when it takes longer to diagnose the fault).
For those entering these shell-shocked battlefields, the above issues become apparent early in a technician’s career. Of course, that’s assuming someone is entering the field for the first time. Shop classes at the middle and high school level have been the victims of budget cuts for decades, in part due to the required resource investment. Meanwhile, the prevailing message to students from on high has prioritized pursuit of academic-focused four-year colleges degrees over trades. Many industries are attempting to deal with this slow take rate for trade schools by anteing up with offers of generous pay, equipment reimbursement, company-supplied tools and vehicles, and other adjustments designed to attract young talent. Yet these are moves that the automotive industry has, bizarrely, rarely adopted. It’s easy to see how such reforms would directly address the current high-turnover environment, as techs either burn out or constantly hop from one business to another, surfing just long enough for the next job offer. Folks with wisdom, experience, and keen diagnostic instincts eventually seek a landing pad with fleets in government sectors, aircraft maintenance, or sometimes an entirely different trade.
This uneven labor trade-off has driven a shortage of somewhere between 10,000 to 20,000 technicians every year, by most estimates. Concerning the shortage over the next five years, estimates ranges wildly on the body count needed: anywhere between 25,000 and 642,000. The result is a recession of reliable, quality shops as service managers scramble to bring enough workers in to meet demand, which has grown substantially during the pandemic. With the valve closing on a supply of newly trained techs, some shops are left with less-than-ideal staff, if they have any at all to hire, further entrenching the troubled state of the industry. A loss of experienced talent in the labor pool results in higher return rates for follow-up work on a job, either due to a workmanship errors or outright misdiagnosis of the issue. Without a well-trained bucket of younger workers feeding into the industry, many shops are unable to hire enough techs to keep up with demand, resulting in long turn-around times and far-out schedule slots for work.
Attempts at course correction begin at the leadership level in many cases, with a number of shops moving away from paying technicians by flag hours (as previously mentioned) and moving towards conventional salaries, some with the addition of a commission based on revenue, split by the individual or by gross shop sales. This measure removes some of the pressure of beating the clock on the book’s labor hours for a given job, a situation that normally does as much to encourage speed as it does contribute to technician burnout on trickier jobs that eventually exceed the book time, or worse, cause mistakes. Crafting a supportive shop culture is also key, whether that be in the form of providing tools, additional benefits, and training for techs. Some of this may come from reestablishing service advisors as customer service roles and less as salesmen of the service department by, for example, pressuring for upsales with a commission structure that is untangled from the success within the shop of the work they sell. It’s not hard for there to be a large discrepancy in income between the two roles in situations where service advisors can sell more work (thus generate large commissions) than the shop can reliably process.
In our education system, the modern STEM movement could easily translate into intelligent students pursuing careers as electricians, mechanics, plumbers, or just about any other trade; they all rely on a practical understanding of engineering, math, and physics. The push for college diplomas by educators as the most vital key to success has created an environment where there’s not just a shortage of workers in certain trades, but an oversaturation of college-degreed individuals in other labor markets. In the trades, however, many employers have been able to raise pay, train on the job, supply equipment, and generally bring their workers into true careers rather than a string of jobs—think electricians, utility workers, or welders. With retention comes a growing knowledge base within the business that becomes more efficient as time moves on. If educators choose, there exists the potential to drive new interest in training and educating young gearheads with accessible resources that prepare them to be efficient and adaptive technicians later in life, and demonstrating that it is a necessity to budget for new automotive education programs.
At the end of the day, our vehicles aren’t just expressions of passion and lifestyle. They are tools for survival in many ways, getting us to work, hustling our families from place to place, and offering escape when we need it. Their reliability isn’t just a matter of convenience, either; in many climates, our machines have to be in tip-top shape to deal with extreme temperatures and conditions. For many owners, that means a reliance on quality automotive care without having to navigate the complicated consequences of an industry that is in dire need of a tune-up.
Remember when there were pits instead of lifts?
Quality Issues Need Resolving
Mid-80s, mired in quality issues and having its lunch eaten by the imports, Ford arranges a fact-finding tour of a Honda factory. After having the opportunity to observe various parts of the manufacturing process, the delegation finally makes its way to the final assembly line where they are taken aback by a strange sight: as finished cars roll off, a worker occasionally takes a newborn kitten out a box and puts it in a random car.
The tour guide explains: “We take quality extremely seriously. If we come in in the morning and the kittens are dead, well, the assembly is good; if they are alive we have sealing issues!”
6 month later, a GM delegation is invited to a Ford plant to observe the implementation of the Japanese best practices. As the tour is about wrap up, a similar scene unfolds: as the finish cars roll off, a worker tosses full-grown cats into random vehicles.
Tour guide proudly explains to the astonished GM delegation: “That’s one of the Japanese techniques. We take quality very seriously: if we come in the morning and cats are alive, job well done; if they are no longer in the car, we got sealing issues!”
Back then you had to flat tow vehicles to the drag strip and then put on the slicks
The RPM Act is common-sense, bi-partisan legislation to protect law-abiding citizens who convert cars, trucks and motorcycles into racing vehicles. The bill clarifies that it is legal to make emissions-related changes to a street vehicle for the purpose of converting it into a racecar used exclusively in competition. It also confirms that it is legal to produce, market and install racing equipment.
Brad lives in California..... He was sick of the world, of Covid-19, Trump, Russian belligerence, China, global warming, racial tensions, and the rest of the disturbing stories that occupy media headlines.
Brad drove his car into his garage and then sealed every doorway and
window as best he could. He got back into his car and wound down all
the windows, selected his favorite radio station, started the car and
revved it to a slow idle.
Two days later, a worried neighbor peered through his garage window
and saw him in the car. She notified the emergency services and they
broke in, pulling Brad from the car.
A little sip of water and, surprisingly, he was in perfect condition,
but his Tesla had a dead battery.