There I was at the WalMart on Yale this week, with my parents, and what did I see but this:
Yes, it’s a Cruise car, charging up in the parking lot. We knew that at least initially they will have backup safety drivers, who I presume are responsible for plugging in the recharge cables. You will note that this car is named “Cheese Blintz”. I for one did not know these cars would have names, but thanks to that bit of trivia I can give you a count of how many of these vehicles I encountered, because this is what we saw on the way back:
Yep, two more cars, one of which is named “Brioche”. I saw the name of the third car at the time I took this picture, but I forgot what it was and you can’t tell because of the obstruction. I’m going to guess it’s another food-based name, because as we drove out of the lot I saw a fourth Cruise-mobile, this one called “Habanero”. You know what to look for now when you see one of these things out on the streets. These two had their backup drivers sitting inside as the cars were charging. That has to be a weird gig.
Anyway. That’s it, that’s the post. Have you seen one of these cars out and about? Are you registered to use the service? If so, what do you think?
One more thought: As noted before, Cruise is charging slightly less for a ride than Uber is. That may be because they don’t have to give a driver a cut (or at least eventually won’t have to), but note that unlike Uber, Cruise will have to own, maintain, insure, fuel up, and store its own fleet. It’s not at all clear to me which is the cheaper operational model.