The Vacuum That's Not a Car and Other Transportation News This Week

Sometimes you have to say goodbye to something you love. The British company Dyson, for example, disbanded its 500-person automotive business this week, and its plans to build an out-of-the-box electric car. Founder and CEO James Dyson explained that the landscape around electric vehicles has changed since the project began four years ago. Other electric vehicle enthusiasts—especially those in the areas affected by Northern California’s blackouts—had to let go too, because it turns out you can’t use your Tesla to charge your house.
In less heartbreaking news this week: A defamation lawsuit by a British, Thai-based expat against Elon Musk gets even weirder , and Bollinger Motors wants you to meet its off-road electric vehicles. It’s been a rough and tumble seven days; let’s get you caught up.


Stories you might have missed from WIRED this week
  • Why does lightning strike twice as much over shipping lanes ? Turns out it has something to do with fossil fuels.

  • Court filings released this week show the strange behind-the-scenes of an Elon Musk tweet that led to a defamation lawsuit—allegations of pedophilia, con men, and disappointed public relations people included.
  • Bollinger Motors becomes the latest to outline plans to build hardy, all-electric SUVs and trucks .

  • Dyson says it’s abandoning its electric car dreams to focus on vacuums—as well as hair dryers and fans.
  • The idea of a vehicle-to-grid power transfer system has been knocking around for decades, but no, you really can’t charge your house with your Tesla.
  • The Trump administration may pull out of the 30-year-old, 34-country Open Skies treaty, which promotes transparency by allowing signatories to conduct surveillance flights over areas of interest. Permitting other countries’ spy planes into your airspace may sound counterintuitive, but foreign policy experts really don’t want to pull out of this deal.

Trailer of the Week

Check out the forthcoming documentary APEX, which takes you inside the history of the Cannonball Run, the secret, illegal race to get across the country as fast as possible in a car. The doc debuts October 20 on NBC Sports.

Stat of the Week