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Elm Analytics - Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest #97 - December 14 - 20, 2018

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Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest

December 21 · Issue #97 · View online
Weekly highlights of the events that impact supply chain risk within the automotive industry.

CHANGE IN MANAGEMENT
Opel/Vauxhall has named veteran Spanish production expert Antonio Cobo as its new VP for manufacturing and supply chain. He will succeed Remi Girardon who is returning to Opel parent PSA Group in Paris to take up a new, unnamed position.
HUMAN CAPITAL
GM is cutting 50 jobs at its Brownstown, Michigan battery plant and 700 jobs at its Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant by February 2019.
Citing “challenging market conditions”, Nissan will layoff 1,000 workers at its manufacturing facilities in Cuernevaca and Aguascalientes, Mexico. They say the decision was driven partly by increases in the cost of raw materials.
INDUSTRY DIRECTIONS
BMW and Porsche have unveiled a prototype EV charging station in Jettingen-Scheppach, Bavaria that can give EVs a range of 62 miles with just under 3 minutes of charging. The charging station is part of their “FastCharge” consortium.
LABOR DISPUTE
Lear workers at the Hammond and Portage plants in Indiana narrowly approved a new contract. Workers were concerned about pay differences for similar work between the two sites. Both plants will soon be consolidated at a new plant in Hammond currently under construction.
LITIGATION
German engineering company IAV GmbH has agreed to plead guilty to a felony for its role in the VW emissions scandal in the U.S. As part of the plea deal, the company will pay a $35m fine, serve probation and be monitored for two years.
Ex-Nissan chairman Carlos Ghson could be released from jail soon following a Tokyo court’s ruling to not extend his detention. The court also decided against extending detention for Greg Kelly, a former Nissan exec who was arrested alongside Ghosn in November.
Toyota is recalling around 143,000 SUVs and pickups across the globe over air bag and brake problems. The affected vehicles are Land Cruisers and Lexus LX570 SUVs from 2008-2019 and Tacoma pickups from 2018 and 2019.
A group of Kia and Hyundai owners have filed a class action lawsuit over an engine defect that could and has caused non-collision fires. The lawsuit “argues that a defect restricts oil flow to core engine parts….eventually resulting in engine seizure and fire.”.
MERGERS, VENTURES, ACQUISITIONS
Audi’s self-driving unit is partnering with Lidar maker Luminar to work towards deploying fully self-driving vehicles by 2021. Luminar’s Lidar tech will help Audi’s self-driving vehicles detect road obstacles ahead at a range of 273 yards.
South Korea has pledged to provide its troubled auto parts suppliers with financial support worth over $3.1b. The auto components industry makes up 7% of South Korea’s GDP and employs 235,000 people.
Daimler and BMW are considering working together on technology platforms, to save money.
Volkswagen has bought a controlling stake in Volvo’s connected car unit WirelessCar for $122m. VW says the technology will provide safe and stable data exchange between its cars and a cloud platform it is developing with Microsoft.
REGULATION
China has agreed to temporarily halt additional 25% tariffs on vehicles imported from the U.S. starting on Jan. 1, 2019. The relief will last for at least three months as part of the agreed truce between Beijing and Washington.
Canada is expanding steel and aluminum tariff exemptions following a request from the construction industry in British Columbia. They will also give additional relief to some companies that have contractual obligations, though it isn’t yet clear which companies will be affected.
The UK Department for Transport’s Cyber Security Standard for Self-Driving Cars was released this week. This marks the UK as the first country to release a set of security guidelines for autonomous vehicles.
The U.S. Congress will not vote on a bill to speed the introduction of self-driving cars before the end of 2018. Auto lobbyist and congressional aides say the bill will face tougher odds next year when Democrats and Republicans will share control of Congress.
RISK ANALYTICS
SUPPLY CHAIN
Supply Chain Digest’s Twas the Night before a Supply Chain Christmas 2018 (video at 3:23)
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