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Elm Analytics - Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest #50 - January 19 - 25, 2018

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Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest

January 26 · Issue #50 · View online
Weekly highlights of the events that impact supply chain risk within the automotive industry.

CHANGE IN MANAGEMENT
It was reported that Wolf-Henning Scheider, the current CEO of Mahle, will replace Stefan Sommer as CEO of ZF Friedrichshafen.
INDUSTRY DIRECTIONS
Mercedes-Benz and BMW are planning to launch vehicle subscription plans in the U.S. this year. Both companies plan to offer a pilot in single U.S. markets to start.
PSA plans to offer electric and hybrid versions of all vehicles by 2025. After leaving two decades ago, PSA restated plans to re-enter the U.S. market. The automaker aims for 80% of its lineup to be semi-autonomous and 10% fully-autonomous by 2030.
LABOR DISPUTE
The 4th round of talks between German manufacturers and the IG Metall union have ended without a result. The union has threatened to escalate the hour-long protests into day-long walkouts.
LITIGATION
Hyundai is recalling around 88,000 cars in the US due to an electrical short that could cause engine fires. The affected vehicles are certain 2006 Sonatas and 2006-2011 Azeras.
MERGERS, VENTURES, ACQUISITIONS
Ford is acquiring Autonomic and TransLoc. These two technology companies will be part of its Smart Mobility subsidiary. Ford will also reorganize its mobility team into four groups.
British billionaire Sanjeev Gupta is looking to purchase the recently shuttered GM-Holden factory in Elizabeth, South Australia and turn it into an EV manufacturing facility. It’s unclear how it would work since the site was sold to an industrial group last month.
PLANT CLOSING
The first phase of the shutdown of automotive glass supplier,  Pittsburgh Glass Works begins March 18, 2018. The company will lay off 61 out of its 200 workers at the Creighton Plant in East Deer, Pennsylvania. 
PLANT EXPANSION
Mazda has opened a new engine machining plant within its existing Thailand powertrain plant. The new plant will increase the plant’s engine production from 30,000 to 100,000 units per year.
PLANT OPENING
Grupo Antolin is investing $50m into three new plants in Spartanburg, South Carolina. The plants will manufacture automotive doors and trim and will create more than 150 jobs over the next five years.
Groupe PSA has chosen Atlanta, Georgia as the location for its new North American headquarters. The new facility will begin operations next month.
Novelis is investing $300m into a new aluminum sheet factory in Guthrie, Kentucky. The plant will open in 2020 and hire about 125 people.
GM-Uzbekistan plans to open assembly plants in Kyrgyzstan and in Russia. The Russian plant may be located in Samara or Leningrad regions. Also under consideration is reopening the former GM plant in St. Petersburg that shut down in 2015. The assembly plants will help GM-Uzbekistan avoid a 25% import tariff.
Volkswagen will spend $20m on a new assembly plant in Rwanda. The plant will start by building up to 5,000 vehicles/year and employ between 500 and 1000 people.
PRODUCTION DECREASE
Amid Brexit concerns, Jaguar Land Rover is cutting production at its Halewood assembly plant. The company says that the move is temporary and will not affect employees.
PRODUCTION INCREASE
Argentina’s auto industry is expecting to increase production by 20% in 2018 compared to 2017.
REGULATION
The 6th round of NAFTA talks got underway this week. The OEMs, among others, are urging politicians to step lightly.
The chair of the US Senate Commerce Committee is working to gather support to pass autonomous vehicle legislation. The House of Representatives has already passed a measure this past September. That legislation would give automakers exemptions from safety rules requiring human controls.
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