Roadshow's annual Shift Awards celebrate the best in car tech
Yes indeed everybody.
Welcome to the 2017 Shift Awards from Road Show by CNet.
Welcome everybody, this is our 2nd annual Shift Awards, last year was the first time, when we launched the site.
And now we're gonna be giving away and recognizing the greatest Progressive technologies and people in the industry.
My name is Tim Stevens.
I'm editor-in-chief of Road Show.
I'm Brian Cooley, I'm editor-at-large at Road Show, and we're about to go through a series of very compact categories.
We whittled it down to the absolute essence of what's bubbling up in the industry in the last year.
We have four categories and one award for disruptor of the year.
What is disruptor real briefly.
disruptor is the individual or team of individuals who made the biggest impact on the automotive industry.
Last year we gave it to the team at West Virginia University who had basically discovered diesel gate and kicked that whole thing off.
This year, a different individual.
We'll have to wait a little bit to see who that is.
Let's get started then with the first of our categories, which as you can see on the screen there are drive line technology, safety technology, cabin tech, [UNKNOWN] that we mentioned, and of course we'll finish up with our vehicle of the year from the Road Show team.
So let's get started with our nominees In our first category, which is driveline technology.
And the nominees in there, there are three, and they include BMW's proactive driving assistance, Chrysler Pacifica's plugin hybrid technology.
As well as the Chevy Bolt's EV powertrain.
And the winner in driveline technology.
A lot of great technology there this year.
Chevy Bolt EV.
Chevy Bolt EV.
I believe we have Mark Royce.
Mark Royce is here.
Come on up.
Mark Reuss, President of General Motors.
Thank you, thank you very much.
Here's your trophy sir.
Thank you so much.
It's beautiful, and this is really, really special too.
This reward is beautiful.
So I was told it was 3D printed, and it actually shifts.
But, We don't need no shifter's in a bolt.
We're very proud.
We think this is the best show in the industry.
We're also big fans of the Bolt.
So tell us about the Bolt and the rollout.
It's very limited right now.
But how's it doing.
When can people actually get them nationwide?
We're making them as fast as we can.
Right here in Orion, right, a few miles up the road on I75.
So we've got a great assembly team there.
The team that did this, this was really a moonshot for us, and we shipped and turned our valve on.
From a quality standpoint it was pretty much the eagle has landed.
We didn't know exactly how much range we could get out of this propulsion system, or the battery system itself, so we partnered with LG and we own our own battery chemistry, and our own power control systems.
And we really, I'm just so proud of the team.
They did a wonderful job.
So Pam Fletcher and Josh Tavel on the team, I'm so happy for them so this means a lot to them.
Awesome, well congratulations on the award and again we're big fans of the Bulls so we're looking forward to seeing them soon.>> Thank you so much, I really appreciate it guys.
Thank you for having us.
[APPLAUSE] Mark, being one of the great, real car guys in the industry, he's gonna wear out that shifter, I just know it.
He's gonna sit on his gas and he's gonna go through the gears.
Let's move on to our next category here, Tim, and now we're going to get into safety technology which is another area that bubbles up
In a lot of different directions, from autonomy to driver aid to driver assist to [UNKNOWN].
Nominees for this year 2017 Shift Award include Audi's laser headlight technology.
We've also got another Audi entrant here that made the cut and that is Audi's traffic light information system, relaying the status of the traffic lights in an information basis on the dashboard of your car just coming out.
And Cadillac's full display rear view mirror in partnership with Gentex on that part.
So we've got some technologies that give you more information about what's going on in the road and some technologies that let you see more about what's going on in the road.
Yeah, a lot of visual going on there, isn't it?
And the winner in the Safety Technology category is, it's Audi's Traffic Light Information System, congratulations Audi.
[APPLAUSE] We've got Mark Yankee for Audi American.
Come on up Mark and accept you're pretty awesome six speed shifter.
Mark, thanks very much.
Thank you so much.
Tell us a little bit about this system.
How is this basically a precursor to some of the great [UNKNOWN] stuff we expect In the future?
I think we see it as a first step, and it is a pretty important one.
Its interesting when you see customers and frankly journalists getting behind the wheel, you tell them about the technology and they think, okay that's neat.
But then when you actually experience it, you look, you sit, and you see what information is on front of you that your light is turning green in 90 seconds.
You take your hands off the wheel, you relax, you know how much time you have remaining You can maybe hand something to your child in the backseat.
Or maybe you take a little time to input some navigation data.
It really does change the way you drive.
In the future, it will be literally that you'll be able to link up cars to each other.
You'll be able to link up with the Infrastructure, get more information, will you make that next light if you drive 25 miles per hour?
It obviously won't tell you.
[INAUDIBLE] To accelerate to make it.
But it does actually tell you today that the light ahead that you see is green is red on your dash because you're gonna wait 90 seconds, you're not gonna make it in time
So it generally changes the way you drive.
It gives drivers more information, and it's something that the Audi brand stands for that we continue to push forward on a lot of the technology.
And that could help to boost economy as well because you won't be accelerating to the light because you'll know I'm not going to make it anyway.
You generally do.
You see that you're not going to make it and you take your foot off the accelerator, that's one.
The second is it'll be looped in with start/stop.
And it will get linked in with your navigation data, so if this light takes 3 minutes to turn green, the system knows that you can turn right here and then a left and you'll be further along and faster on your way.
Well congratulations on the award.
Thanks very much.
We'll stop and get a picture here before you go.
Say congratulations for [UNKNOWN].
And this is an early slice of V to I implementation on the road where the vehicle and the infrastructure will go back and forth and confer if you will so that the vehicle and the road actually confer together with some foreknowledge as opposed to it being as random and unknowable as it is right now.
Right, and hopefully down the road, five ten years, we'll have all cars talking to each other and talking to all the traffic lights out there and the DOT and every plough that's on the road so you'll know exactly what
And every dog.
And every [CROSSTALK] deer.
Put a badge on every deer out there too.
So when it jumps out you'll know.
Kudos to Audi for really getting out early on a real credible and a real tangible early initiative on V2I technology.
Let's go to our next category now.
Which is cabin technology.
One that is often some of the most fun to get your hands on.
Very see able.
Very play with able.
Our nominees in this category include Chrysler's Uconnect Theater, a second row theater system in the Pacifica.
This one has a lot of great benefits for kids.
There is a map so they don't have to ask, are we there yet?
They can see if we're there yet.
We also gave a nod to Ford's Sync 3 system, a very impressive The latest configuration of the Ford Sync platform.
And also to a derivation of Android auto, one that can run on a phone solely without having to have integration with a dash.
For cars that don't have a retro fit or a factory fit pattern.
And that's our cabin technology nominees and the winner in that one.
Chrysler Uconnect in the Pacifica, congratulations.
[SOUND] And the group effort here from Chrysler come on up.
Thank you very much.
Take your six speed.
So this is one of the really
Interesting applications of technology in a minivan.
One of the first ones that we saw that really took advantage of the minivan platform and really gave kids in the backseat a little bit more control and a little bit more insight.
What was the thinking behind creating this navigation system for kids basically?
Obviously, [UNKNOWN] entertainment for kids is important, keeping them engaged.
It's not only an entertainment tool.
But it's also educational with the embedded apps and games for the kids.
There's math flashcards.
There's a lot of things for them to engage with.
But it can also be used for adults.
I mean we see a lot of real estate agents putting homes and videos that they've taken with their clients throughout the day using the rear seat entertainment for that as well.
So it's an outstanding system.
We think it's the best in the industry.
So we're really excited and thank you for this.
And we've seen the Portal concept as relishing a little bit more further forward looking idea of a mini van.
Is the mini van kinda like the closest thing to an autonomous platform we have right now?
The The living room an wheels ideal?
Well, it's really kind of, we see that as the third space between home and work.
And we spend a lot of time in our vehicles.
And creating an environment that's fun and comfortable for people while they're travelling, we thing is important and a trend for the future.
Great, well congratulations on the award.
Congratulations to Chrysler on that.
And to finally see someone crack the code on moving second row entertainment beyond just media playback.
To something really rich and interesting.
Yeah and you know solving a bit of a pain point for parents, which is are we there yet.
You get rid of that question all together, and I think that right there shows a lot of,
And I was intrigued by his comment about the real estate industry as a vertical that's finding another way to use this platform that can really be something interactive for second row passengers, clients in that case
I guess sometimes your child feels like a client as well.
[LAUGH] Before we get to our vehicle of the year we're going to our interesting award here that has no nominees, but is one person that we pick, Tim, as you mention, from the array of automotive executives out there.
Right, there are a lot of people either who are doing a lot of fascinating things in the industry, but ultimately, there was somebody who stood out to us, who really has helped to push the industry forward in a very different way, and ultimately
Move us all forward.
Move us closer to the future that I think a lot of us are pretty eager to get to.
And that person is John Krafcik of Waymo, the Google self-driving division.
So, Waymo is basically the former self-driving car project at Google, now spun off to be its own entity.
It's part of Alphabet, which is the larger parent company of Google.
John Krafcik unfortunately was not able to be with us today, but we were able to meet with him yesterday.
Very briefly after he gave some presentations on autonomous driving car.
[UNKNOWN] managing editor, he was able to give him his trophy which he was very happy to receive.
So John did a lot of work this year helping to move the industry forward on the autonomous front Google's been very, very progressive in terms of developing their autonomous cars and John Craft in particular has been really aggressive in working with the DOT, working with people like Secretary Fox to help standardize regulations for autonomous cars here in the US and ultimately.
Move the whole industry forward.
And that's why we recognize that John Krafcik as our Disruptor of the year.
And one of the announcements they also made here during show press days was how their unit, their Alphabet Wema was gonna work very hard on doing the sensor package, which is 75 or $80,000 nominally today for a highly autonomous car down to one tenth that cost.
They're gonna work on that engineering problem As opposed to just really making cars that have that, but to make that package that can distribute across the industry.
Suddenly you can hide the cost of autonomy in at least to mid-size to mid-premium car.
It moves the ball forward very quickly.
Cost is showing you how close we are getting to real market roll up.
Once you start to work on pricing and packaging.
Yeah, there are very few cars in the industry high $75,000 [CROSSTALK].
But when you get it down into the five grand range-
Then you can work that into the MSRP somewhere.
So congratulations to WEMO and their junk traffic.
This brings us to our final category in the 2017 Shift Awards, of course, the one that everyone looks for, and that is our Vehicle of the Year.
Here are our three nominees for the most important vehicle of 2016 in the Shift Awards, and they include, BMW's M2.
Which is a great sports car, one of our favorite driving cars, we get a range of products here.
So you wanna talk about each
It just went a little bit into it.
It just [INAUDIBLE].
The M2 is a phenomenal driving car.
One of the ones that we really, really enjoyed spending a lot of time in.
We did a big shoot a little while ago in which we, we spend a lot of time in a lot of sports cars and the M2 is one that stands out.
Pretty much what the M3 was in its early days.
Kinda recapturing some of the lean, very sharp tool essence.
And downsizing a little bit from the M3.
Just a raw, fun simple car.
Not a lot of dials.
deal with configurations, adaptive suspension to fiddle with, just a great driver's car.
And there's almost no angle where it doesn't look good.
It's pretty aggressive.
Whether it's gonna drift or not.
I did have some fun drifting, I must say.
Yeah, I think you did.
Our second nominee in this category of three is a name that we've seen before earlier in the show.
Right, this is the Chevy Bolt EV which has already won our Powertrain Award of the year.
Really great EV bringing the cost down.
We're talking about around a $30,000 entry point for a car that will do well over 200 miles on a charge.
I was lucky enough to do an early drive in this driving down the California coast which is a nice thing to do anyway.
I've been doing it without burning any gasoline at all.
I made it I think 224 miles on a charge.
And there was still at least 15 miles left on the thing.
So that was really impressive, driving normally in a car that looks like a normal car.
Doesn't look like some freak on wheels.
No, great looking car.
Great cabin Zach, which often doesn't get mentioned as much as its electric role.
And to have all those bases covered at the same time, it just shows the multi headed message is so important Of this industry because these are real products for real mainstream millions of buyers.
And our third nominee in this category of three is the Chrysler Pacifica mini-van.>>Right, this is the mini-van that made us think, "Hey, maybe mini-vans are not dead afterall.
You know that segment has been declining.
But ultimately when the Pacifica came out, I think everyone in the industry was like, " ", and nobody cares.
But the minute we saw it we were like, "Wow this actually [UNKNOWN] " Looks really nice.
And then we learned about the technology.
And as we were talking about earlier, the rear-seat entertainment system for kids, and a lot of the other innovations that this brought to market.
And that was all really cool.
And then, the plug-in hybrid technology as well, which just makes it a first level.
Yeah, first in class.
I remember I found myself shocked when I was at the unveil of that at the auto show earlier last year and.
I found myself on camera actually saying the phrase, sexy minivan.
[LAUGH] And I meant it cuz it looks so good.
And the technology was so right on, it really got a lot of things going.
So those are our three nominees in the category for vehicle of the year.
Of course, only one can win.
Absolutely, we've only got one trophy left.
And that winner, for the 2017 Shift Award is
The Chevy Bolt.
It's the Chevy Bolt EV.
Congratulations to [UNKNOWN] Motors.
Mark Royce, president
It's good to see him again, welcome back, Mark.
Smile for the camera here a little bit before we start.
No, it's easy to smile.
But thanks you guys.
Great competition, as well, you know?
Chrysler and their van is spectacular and the M is really a nice car, too, so we were really proud again to have it.
And appreciate your comments on it's not some sort of a freak on wheels.
You know it's not.
I mean that in the kindest way possible.
No, I get it.
I get it.
No it was designed by some great people in our company that really wanted a very clean, attractive car that everybody can access, and get that kind of one purpose range, which is, you drove the car and your mileage estimates are
Of what you've got are real and so, I think there's more to do there, and we're gonna work on it, but the team that did this, we didn't have all those things known when we started it and that's the kind of stuff that our company is going to be known for.
So, we're gonna take some chances and risks and we're gonna see the big payoffs too.
So, I really appreciate the award for our team.
Thank you very much.
Another hand for Chevrolet division.
And the Bolt EV, our vehicle of the year.
For the Road Show Shift Awards.
Also a great American innovation story.
I mean there's just some great thinking coming out of the Chevy Division in General Motors, and this city in particular that brought together a car that is so smart on so many fronts.
And there are so many interesting EVs that we see at auto shows we go to and a lot of talk about the high horsepower, high performance, huge range.
but, very few of them actually ever come to market and certainly none of them are going to come to market, at least in the near future, at the kind of volume that we're talking about with the Chevy Volt.
This is going to be a car that you'll be able to go into any dealership in the US, eventually, and buy and that is really encouraging to see that we are at that point.
Real volume, great pricing and a balanced array of attributes made the Volt such a winner.
So that concludes the 2016 shift awards here from Roadshow Our winners please stay around for a group photo here at the end.
We wanna thank you all for being with us and continuing coverage here at the stage.
We're gonna take very short break, gonna get some photos and turn the stage over and then we've got a second full day of live coverage With more press conferences coming up and live interviews with a number of industry executives.
With our own unique view of how this industry is moving forward.
As well as hands on video of as many of the newest cars and more booth tours with our road show team coming in here beamed into the stage and going into our live stream.
We have a lot going on here on day two of the press days here at the North American International Auto Show.
Don't go away we see you back here in just a moment.
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