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Elm Analytics - Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest #164 - March 27 - April 2, 2020

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Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest

April 3 · Issue #164 · View online
Weekly highlights of the events that impact supply chain risk within the automotive industry.

THE AUTOMOTIVE MANUFACTURING PLANT CORONAVIRUS SHUTDOWN
THE AUTOMOTIVE MANUFACTURING PLANT CORONAVIRUS SHUTDOWN
CHANGE IN MANAGEMENT
Kia has named its current head of global operations Ho-sung Song as its new president. Song took the reins from former president Han-woo Park yesterday.
Acura has named Sage Marie as its new assistant VP of advertising, effective April 1. Marie has been with the automaker since 1998 and currently serves as assistant VP of public relations at American Honda.
EARNING DIP
The coronavirus sent US car sales tumbling in Q1, especially for March. The only exceptions were Tesla and Kia, with Q1 sales increases of 40% and 1%, respectively, compared to Q1 2019.
HUMAN CAPITAL
The European Automobile Manufacturer’s Association says that coronavirus plant shutdowns have affected the jobs of at least 1.1m Europeans in the industry. Their figure of 1.1m only refers to those that work directly for car, truck, van, and bus manufacturers, with the impact in the broader supply chain being even more significant.
To offset the impact of coronavirus disruptions, GM is temporarily cutting its salaried workforce’s pay by 20%. The automaker is promising to repay its employees with interest later this year or by early 2021.
FCA is will also defer 20% of salaried worker’s pay as well as making cuts to executive and board compensation.
INDUSTRY DIRECTIONS
Ford says that it will build 50k ventilators in Michigan over the next 100 days to help fight the coronavirus. Ford is also working with GE to double ventilator output at GE-owned facilities in the coming week.
Planet Money talked to Todd Olson, CEO of Twin City Die Castings, about the shift to making pistons for the ventilators GM is building.
The 2020 North American International Auto Show that was set to take place in Detroit this June has been canceled due to coronavirus. The venue where the event is held, TCF Center, will be turned into a temporary hospital to help fight the virus.
Going against industry trends, Honda is removing touchscreen controls for the newest model of the Jazz. Jazz project leader Takeki Tanaka says they brought back traditional dial controls to “…minimize driver disruption for operation, in particular, for the heater and air conditioning”.
LITIGATION
GM has reached as $120m settlement in a suit with vehicle owners who claimed their vehicles lost value due to defective ignition switches. The faulty switches have been linked to 124 deaths.
MERGERS, VENTURES, ACQUISITIONS
GM is working together with Honda to develop two new electric vehicles for Honda that will be sold in the US and Canada in the 2024 model year. As part of the deal, the new cars will incorporate GM’s OnStar service and hands-free ADAS system.
Hyundai is forming a 50-50 autonomous driving JV with Aptiv that will cater to robotaxi providers, fleet operators, and automotive manufacturers. The as of yet unnamed company will be headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts.
Hyundai is also establishing a global innovation center in Singapore as part of its effort to transform into a Smart Mobility Solution provider. The facility, expected to be completed in 2022, will house a considerable network of researchers, technology, and training providers and an advanced manufacturing center.
Toyota and BYD formally incorporated a new 50:50 JV focused on the research and development of battery electric vehicles this week. The new company, named BYD Toyota EV Technology and headquartered in Shenzhen, China, will begin operations in May.
RAW MATERIALS
Lockdowns in countries like Chile, Peru, and Indonesia are stressing China’s raw materials supply chains.
REGULATION
The Trump administration has formally moved to roll back Obama-era fuel economy standards with what they are calling the “Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule.” The new rules will only require new vehicles to achieve 40.4 mpg by 2025, as opposed to the Obama-era target of 46.7 mpg.
After rolling back Obama-era fuel economy standards, President Trump took to Twitter to criticize “foolish executives” at “politically correct automobile companies” for not publicly supporting his plan. He claims that the new regulations would lower the average price of a car by $3.5k and make engines run smoother.
Center for Automotive Research: Beyond the CARES Act, the Trump administration should delay the entry-into-force of the USMCA. This move would free automaker and supplier resources to realign supply chains challenged in a COVID-19 economy.
RISK ANALYTICS
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