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Automotive Supply Chain Risk Digest #312
January 27 - February 2, 2023 by Elm Analytics
Change In Management
Chinese EV Startup Xpeng has named former Great Wall Motor vice chairman Wang Fengying as its new president. She will be responsible for product planning, portfolio management, and sales.
Foxconn has named former Nissan and Nidec executive Jun Seki as its new chief strategy officer for EVs.
Rivian is laying off 6% of its workforce as it braces for a possible industry-wide price war. The cuts will not affect manufacturing jobs at their plant in Normal, Illinois.
Ford dropped prices on its Mustang Mach-E in response to Tesla's price cuts.
China's Xiaomi is penalizing its supplier $149k for leaking images of the bumpers of its unreleased car.
Mergers, Ventures, Acquisitions
GM is taking a massive 10% stake in Lithium Americas to develop the Thacker Pass lithium mine in Nevada. The company has been increasing battery cell capacity, hoping to make 1M EVs in 2025.
Renault and Nissan's boards are set to approve changes to rebalance their alliance. Renault will drop its stake in Nissan from 43% to match Nissan's 15% - a past point of contention as Nissan rose in the market. While the partnership will assist in the transition to EVs, it is uncertain which technologies and investments are in play.
According to its Lobby Register, VW is reportedly considering building EV battery plants in Ontario, Canada.
Interior and exterior parts supplier Seoyon E-Hwa is investing $76M into a new plant in Bloomingdale, Georgia. The new plant will create 740 new jobs.
Wolfspeed and ZF have partnered to build a plant for the production of silicon carbide semiconductors in Ensdorf, Germany.
UK car production dropped by 10% in 2022, marking the country's worst production numbers since 1956.
Next week, VW's Skoda will cut production at its three Czech plants due to parts shortages.
Stellantis added a second shift at its Pomigliano plant in Italy. The automaker has increased the output of the Alfa Romeo Tonale. Production of its platform sibling, the Dodge Hornet, will start soon.
Tesla's Shanghai plant is ramping production in response to increased demand spurred by its price cuts. The factory plans to churn out 20k vehicles weekly in February and March.
A glut of orders has Jaguar Land Rover adding a third shift at its Nitra plant in Slovakia.
Ford recalled 462k vehicles worldwide due to rearview cameras that could suffer from faulty video output. The recall covers some 2020-2023 Explorers and Lincoln Aviators, as well as a lot of 2020-2022 Lincoln Corsairs.
Last year Morocco produced 470k passenger cars, making it the biggest exporter in Africa. Automakers value its good infrastructure, human capital, and tax benefits. By adding key local suppliers, the country seems poised to continue its rapid growth.
Analysts are watching the spring and summer of 2023 for the return of aggressive pre-pandemic pricing incentives.
Tesla's suppliers are bracing for the cost reduction fallout from the automaker's aggressive price cuts.