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Elm Analytics - Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest #196 - November 6 - 12, 2020

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Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest

November 13 · Issue #196 · View online
Weekly highlights of the events that impact supply chain risk within the automotive industry.

CHANGE IN MANAGEMENT
Volkswagen has hired away Mitsubishi North America’s chief marketing officer to head it’s marketing in the U.S. Kimberley Gardiner will become senior VP for brand marketing at VW on Nov. 16.
EARNING DIP
Nissan has reported an operating loss for the Jul-Sep quarter of $45.6M compared to a $285M profit a year earlier. CEO Makoto Uchida expects a return to profitability in 2021 thanks to demand in China bouncing back from the pandemic.
HUMAN CAPITAL
Ford is adding 350 jobs at two plants to meet expected demand for EVs that haven’t gone on sale yet. The automaker will add 150 workers at its Kansas City assembly plant and 200 workers at its Rouge EV center in Dearborn.
INDUSTRY DIRECTIONS
Honda received approval this week to implement Level 3 autonomous tech in its cars sold in Japan. The feature will drive a car autonomously during congested highway traffic and be first available in the Honda Legend before March 31, 2021.
If all goes to plan, Lordstown Motors’ Endurance electric truck, releasing in 2021, will be the first modern vehicle with motors in the wheels. The truck will save around 1,000 lbs in weight since it will not have a transmission, axles, transfer cases, driveshafts, U-joints or gears.
LABOR DISPUTE
Volkswagen Mexico has made an agreement with its local union to extend talks regarding a profit-sharing dispute until January 2021. The union had originally planned to halt operations this week if the automaker did not pay what the union describes as a debt relating to a 2015 profit-sharing dispute.
Canadian auto union Unifor ratified its new three-year deal with GM this week. “This contract solidifies and boldly builds on GM’s Canadian footprint” said Unifor President Jerry Dias.
LITIGATION
Volvo is recalling 54,000 2001-03 S80 and S60 cars sold in the U.S. over an airbag inflator defect that has reportedly caused one death. Volvo will replace the inflators with a modern propellant and inflator with parts that are expected to be available by March.
GM is recalling 194,105 vehicles in the U.S. over loose or missing bolts that could result in a transmission oil leak.
The first hearing in Nissan’s lawsuit against former chairman Carlos Ghosn is scheduled to take place today in Yokohama, Japan. The automaker is looking to claim $95M in damages.
MERGERS, VENTURES, ACQUISITIONS
Hyundai has signed a deal with NVIDIA to use the chip maker’s in-vehicle infotainment systems in all Hyundai, Kia and Genesis models starting in 2022.
FCA Italy and French energy storage systems company Engie EPS signed a memorandum of understanding this week to setup a new JV for EV charging infrastructure in the first quarter of 2021. The new JV will offer residential, business and public charging infrastructure as well as green energy packages for EV customers across Europe.
PLANT OPENING
GM’s decision to restart truck production at its Oshawa plant in Ontario has caused a stir among UAW workers at the automaker’s US truck plants.
PLANT SHUTDOWN
GM halted Corvette production for the remainder of this week after new coronavirus restrictions disrupted the supply chain in Mexico. The automaker did not confirm which parts are impacted and says that they are expected to resume normal operations on Monday, Nov. 16.
REGULATION
The EU has rejected a request from auto industry group ACEA to delay the Jan. 1 introduction of new diesel emissions standards. The ACEA cited complications from the coronavirus and estimated that around 600k cars that were already built would not be able to be sold before the standard takes effect.
RISK ANALYTICS
A new study from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders finds that Brexit preparations have already cost the UK auto industry more than $867M. As a result, the SMMT issued a plea to MPs earlier this week to reach a zero-tariff deal with the EU.
Automotive suppliers in Canada claim that they are losing, or stand to lose, tens of millions of dollars in contracts due to what they claim as inconsistent enforcement of Canada’s COVID-19 rules for crossing the U.S. border.
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