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Elm Analytics - Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest #197 - November 13 - 19, 2020

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Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest

November 20 · Issue #197 · View online
Weekly highlights of the events that impact supply chain risk within the automotive industry.

INDUSTRY DIRECTIONS
Hyundai’s self-driving JV with Aptiv has received permission from Nevada to test autonomous vehicles on public roads without a driver. The JV, dubbed Motional, will begin operating Chrysler Pacifica minivans without a human driver in the new few months.
Japanese automakers took five of the top 10 spots in this year’s Consumer Reports Reliability survey. Mazda topped the list for the first time, with Toyota and Lexus coming in second and third, respectively.
LABOR DISPUTE
Workers at Kia in South Korea are launching a partial strike on Nov 24 over wages and worries about job security. The automaker’s plan to start EV production is the main issue since it can be done with less labor and may result in job cuts.
LITIGATION
In a US International Trade Commission filing, JLR is looking to block imports of Porsche, Lamborghini, Audi, and VW SUVs. The complaint centers around vehicles with technology infringing on JLR’s Terrain Response patents.
Former UAW VP Joe Ashton was sentenced to 30 months in prison for his involvement in a scheme to steal $4m.
GM recalled 68k Chevy Bolt EVs over a potentially faulty battery that can start a fire. The automaker said it had identified five fires.
MERGERS, VENTURES, ACQUISITIONS
Bloomberg reports that Nissan is in talks with Hercules Electric Vehicles to electrify Nissan’s full-size pickups.
Daimler and Geely will team up to build a next-gen combustion engine for hybrid vehicles. Daimler will develop the engine and manufacture them in Europe and China.
PLANT CLOSING
American Axle is closing its plant in Malvern, Ohio that was gutted by a fire in September. The supplier said that the building’s damage was too severe and that the structure was irreparable.
PLANT DISASTER
A Romeo Rim worker was crushed to death when an injection mold fell from an interior wall.
PLANT EXPANSION
Automotive Glass supplier AGC Automotive will expand its Shelby West Corporate Park facility in Alabama. Two existing plants will be consolidated into one facility adding 33k sq ft of space.
Stanley Engineered Fastening is investing $6m into expanding its plant in Hopkinsville, Kentucky. The expansion will add 30k sq ft to the plant and create 49 jobs.
PLANT OPENING
Chinese EV battery maker SVolt Energy is investing $2.4b in a new battery plant in Saarland, Germany. The plant is scheduled to start production at the end of 2023 and have a yearly production capacity of 25 GWh.
PRODUCTION DECREASE
COVID related parts shortages have forced shift cuts at GM’s truck plant in Arlington, Texas.
REGULATION
Britain plans to announce a ban on internal combustion vehicles from 2030, five years earlier than past plans.
The Canadian province of Quebec announced this week that it would ban the sale of new gas-powered cars starting in 2035. In a statement, the government said, “We are aiming for a target of 1.5 million electric vehicles on Quebec roads in 2030.”
Germany’s auto sector has secured $5.9b in government aid to help them get through the coronavirus crisis and the transition to EVs. The government will extend cash bonuses to purchase EVs until 2025 and help suppliers invest in new technology.
Despite industry protests, the FCC this week voted to shift part of the wireless spectrum previously set aside for automotive vehicle communication to now be used for Wi-Fi. FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said the coronavirus pandemic has underscored that consumers need more bandwidth.
SUPPLY CHAIN
A shortage of freight carriers and increased demand continues to push rates up and affect supply chains.
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