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Elm Analytics - Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest #183 - August 7 - 13, 2020

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Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest

August 14 · Issue #183 · View online
Weekly highlights of the events that impact supply chain risk within the automotive industry.

CHANGE IN MANAGEMENT
Dhivya Suryadevara, GM’s CFO, has resigned to take a position at Stripe, a payment processor. GM North America’s CFO, John Stapleton, will serve in the role on an interim basis.
Kimberly Rodriguez has been named Dura Automotive’s new CEO. She was hired by MiddleGround Capital, who recently acquired a majority stake in Dura. Dura stated that it plans to open two new plants in Macedonia and another in the US.
Mitsubishi’s longtime chairman Osamu Masuko resigned late last week, citing health reasons. He will be temporarily replaced as chairman by the automaker’s current CEO, Takao Kato.
HUMAN CAPITAL
By comparing current foot traffic levels through mobile phone data, Bloomberg and Orbital Insight investigate US assembly plants’ staffing levels. Most automotive plants are still well below pre-pandemic staff levels.
INDUSTRY DIRECTIONS
A 40 m route between Detroit to Ann Arbor, Michigan, will become the “world’s most sophisticated roadway.” A public-private partnership will put a dedicated autonomous vehicle lane in place as well as the infrastructure to support it.
Chinese EV battery maker CATL is working on new tech that would integrate cells directly into a vehicle’s frame and allow more cells and an extended driving range of over 500 miles per charge. CATL is aiming to launch the new design before 2030.
EV startup Lucid Motors claims that its new luxury model, the Lucid Air, will be the first EV with a range of 500 miles on a single charge. The $100k+ vehicle will be available starting in early 2021.
LITIGATION
Mercedes has reached a $2B deal to settle diesel emissions cases in the US.
Ford recalled over 500k vehicles in North America due to front brake jounce hoses that pose a risk of rupturing.
MERGERS, VENTURES, ACQUISITIONS
Hyundai and Aptiv have formed a new autonomous driving JV called Motional. The $4B venture was first announced last September and finalized in March of this year.
Groupe PSA is planning to start selling its Peugeot brand in North America again by 2023. The last time the automaker sold vehicles in the US was 1991.
Sweden’s Veoneer has completed the divestiture of its US brake control business to Germany’s ZF.
Continental and aft automotive have created a 50/50 joint venture to develop special couplings and cooling circuits.
PLANT CLOSING
Continental is planning to close its suspension and vibration control plant in Mitchell, Ontario, Canada, by March 2021. The closure will put 151 employees out of work.
EXPANSION
Volkswagen is expanding its Chattanooga facility to create an EV R&D center.
May Mobility will expand its autonomous vehicle development in Ann Arbor, Michigan, as part of an MEDC grant.
PLANT OPENING
French EV battery startup Verkor is seeking $1.8B in financing to build a new battery cell factory in France by 2023. The plant would have an initial production capacity of 16gw hours per year and create over 2k jobs.
Porsche and Customcells are looking to build a battery cell factory in Tübingen, Germany.
REGULATION
The US Transportation Department’s Office of Inspector General said this week that it would audit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s oversight of US vehicle safety standards. In March, the NHTSA proposed significant changes to US vehicle safety requirements to speed the deployment of self-driving vehicles.
Following President Trump’s announcement of a reimposed 10% tariff on Canadian aluminum late last week, Canada has announced $2.7B in counter-tariffs on American goods. Deputy prime minister Chrystia Freeland said, “In imposing these tariffs, the United States has taken the absurd decision to harm its own people.”
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