A visit to car cuckooland

TeslaMondo is heading to LA, the very seat of hedonism, for a week of auto-erotic exploration. With minimal soreness, one hopes.


This retro-tastic pic has nothing to do with LA — or does it?

Let’s see Porsche put a spin on this

Isn’t it splendid when a video ends with a twist?

Sprockets! BMW

“Gott sei Dank war es nicht uns.”

TeslaMondo drops Amazon. It’s scary.

Amazon is drinking the blood of stores that many of us grew up with and kind of like. Granted, we don’t like them enough to continue doing business there despite Amazon, but still, Amazon will eventually face a backlash for erasing so much of our childhoods and making it hard for anyone else to sell us anything.

In a few years, if this company isn’t reined in, you’ll have no reason to leave the house to acquire anything. That sounds fine, you say? Well, America is becoming socially inept, cynical, obese, diabetic and depressed. Kids don’t leave the house because their parents corral them too much, and parents corral themselves too much. We’re becoming Amazombies. Why leave the house when an electronic wafer can manage all interaction with the outside world? Why move when you can make stuff move to you? Inertia for the win! Wait, someone is coming up the front steps.

Ding-dong. That must be the Amazon paint for upstairs. Too bad for the Ben Moore guy down the street.

Ding-dong. That must be the Amazon bark mulch. Too bad for the nursery down the street.

Ding-dong. That must be Rent-A-Rocco, Amazon’s home hair stylist. Too bad for the Rocco down the street.

Maybe Amazon will never face a backlash. Maybe TeslaMondo will miss out on a fortune by sticking with crummy ol’ Tesla and Nvidia instead of Amazon. Decisions, decisions. Where’s a therapist when you need one?

Ding-dong. That must be Amazon’s home shrink service. So quickly? How did Amazon know to send her? Guess that’s a question for Neuralink. They must have hooked up with ShrinkLink, the rascals.

So TeslaMondo prefers the status quo in shopping — mabye even the status quo ante, before the cell phone. Nowadays, if you need sales help at Kohl’s, you need to leave the store and go around to the receiving door, near the dumpster. The employees hang around back there, smoking and texting. Or maybe they’re not texting. Maybe they’re ordering stuff from Amazon.


Copy and paste. Another Tesla first.

Gas engines aren’t known for their connectivity to each other. Sure, Bugatti managed to hook up two ICEs for the Veyron. But overall, ICEs aren’t easily linked. They’re not modular. They’re not Legos.

But Tesla’s products are indeed Legos. Note the company’s E.Z. copy-and-paste stationary battery installations. This simple modularity will underpin the Tesla Semi (and the pickup). It’s just a multiplication of the existing Tesla powertrain. Take your basic quarter pounder, stack a few of them, and you’ve got an instant heart attack for Big Oil.

It’s funny how sophisticated stuff can be so simple. Isn’t that right, Steve Jobs, wherever you are?

Supercharger-sharing talks sound tasty

If Tesla is talking to other automakers about letting them piggyback on Uncle Elon and his Supercharger network — a romantic subplot for many years now — this strikes TeslaMondo as a chance to flesh-out EV adoption with minimal risk to Tesla’s pole position. The more automakers collaborate on EV infrastructure, the lighter the burden for Tesla. But will auto CEOs find a way to save face while riding on Uncle Elon? TeslaMondo thinks the Dieters and Akios of the world will NOT want their cars using Tesla-branded Superchargers. But change the familiar shape, and get rid of the Tesla logo, and now we’re talkin.’

One automaker shouldn’t have to shoulder the burden of EV infrastructure buildout, depicted by Breyers ice cream below. See what’s happening to the little pie? That’s Tesla’s cash oozing out.

Tesla pie chart 2 TeslaMondo


Tesla pie chart 3



Tesla drops “pre-owned” just as customers were starting to own the term

Tesla’s abandonment of the term “pre-owned” comes just as you, the consumer, were starting to adopt it. It’s true. TeslaMondo talks to car customers every day. Why would you adopt such a silly euphemism? Because you don’t like the term “used” any more than car dealers do. “Used” sounds worn out at best. At worst? Contaminated.

You fear contamination. Observe yourself when you go food shopping. You park your car, walk past several available shopping carts in the parking lot, and then grab a cart that’s just inside the door. Why would you walk right past perfectly good shopping carts in the parking lot? Because they’re potentially contaminated. They might have food smeared on them. Or bodily fluids. Or some super-contagious skin disease.

But the carts inside the door have been moved by a store employee who conducts some sort of decontamination process before clearing carts for re-use. That’s what your subconscious sells you, and you actually buy it because you’re a total flake.

If you have a few hours to kill, here’s an exhaustive study on “consumer contamination.” It covers many scenarios where you subconsciously avoid “used” merchandise, or even perfectly unused merchandise that’s simply displayed too close to something like kitty litter.


So congrats, Tesla, for challenging the car-biz lexicon. But euphemisms exist for good reason. The word “used” is risky. If you’re going to sully your products with that term, at least make sure your used Teslas have no radio stations pre-set, no NAV destinations saved, no Bluetooth devices linked and no parking decals stuck to the windows. All are sickening signs of being previously-enjoyed. Uh, pre-owned. Uh, used.


Supercharging a semi with solar

Is it possible? With Musk saying the Supercharging network will eventually go solar, and with the semi on the way, it’s time to close our eyes and picture a semi pulling into a  solar charging station. It’s a splendid vision. But what does the charger look like? A new generation we haven’t seen yet, probably, as a reader commented yesterday. What does the solar array look like? Where is it located? How quickly could it juice up a semi?

This is shaping up to be a weekend of dandruff in the blogosphere as everyone scratches their scalps and ponders this tweet by Flash Gordon, King of the Impossible. How will he make this work?

solar supercharger

One of these is dandruff. One is aspartame, a sweetener. One is pollen.



Wiki car idea is less crazy every year

Screen Shot 2017-06-07 at 12.19.28 PM

Is the typical automaker ‘tude softening up?

Volkswagen’s Seat division is asking the public to name its upcoming SUV. Tesla is developing the semi truck alongside trucking contractors, to ensure success.

Collaboration! It’s a beautiful thing.

If this trend continues, TeslaMondo’s prediction of a wiki car will come true after all. Perhaps automakers are tired of playing Santa Claus and hoping everyone likes their presents. Instead, they’re shuttling people to the North Pole to help develop awesome toys that will won’t get kicked to the back of the closet before New Year’s. Doesn’t this make more sense? Shouldn’t the public be able to do more than “configure” a finished car? How about helping to develop it? We have the technology for instant feedback. Why not use it?


Master of suspense? It ain’t Hitchcock.

Here’s the shareholder meeting video. Skip to 28:28 for comments about the Tesla semi. And skip to 31:14 for a shifty-eyed hint: “There’s a few other things I haven’t mentioned here. I’d just really recommend showing up for the semi trunk unveiling. Maybe there’s  a little more than we’re saying here.”

Musk made that comment immediately after talking about Model Y, but TeslaMondo predicts this “one more thing” will be a Tesla pickup. It would fit the truck theme of the day and generate a flood of useful feedback. But it’s nowhere near production, you say? Since when does Tesla shy away from super-early sneak peeks? No other major automaker is making an electric truck anytime soon, so Tesla has nothing to lose by showing such a concept. Also, there’s minimal risk of a pickup stealing thunder from existing Tesla products.

Anyway, back to the semi:

Tesla’s big rig customers are helping Tesla develop the big rig. It’s amazing that we haven’t seen any leaked images yet. Does Tesla frisk the participants to make sure they’re not packing cell phones? Apparently. But what happens when Neuralink gives us the ability to take snapshots with our eyes, or even “periscope” live video? You can’t ask people to check their brains at the door. Then again, the audience at last year’s Mars colonization event managed to do just that. Remember the Q/A session? Yeek!