Foley Weekly Automotive Report – September 2021 – 4 | Foley & Lardner srl



This report helps automotive suppliers inform their legal and operational decisions to help them overcome challenges and seize opportunities.

Key developments

  • IHS Markit lowered its global production of light vehicles is expected to reach 75.8 million units in 2021, and 82.6 million units in 2022, which represents a downward adjustment of 6.2% and 9.3%, respectively. The company noted that this was the biggest adjustment to its outlook in the past nine months, and it expects continued supply chain risk, especially for semiconductors.
  • New vehicle inventory in the United States is valued to 1.08 million units at the end of August, a 31-day supply; this is a decrease of 57% from the same period a year ago.
  • Wholesale price of used vehicles increased by 3.6% in the first 15 days of September, compared to the previous month. The increase is attributed the ongoing challenges of new vehicle inventories and the demand for replacement vehicles in the aftermath of Hurricane Ida.
  • Pat Gelsinger, CEO of Intel predicted this semiconductors will account for 20% of the material cost of a high-end passenger car by 2030, up from 4% in 2019. The size of the automotive semiconductor market is expected to nearly double to reach $ 115 billion by the end of the decade, hence the need to increase collaboration between automakers and chipmakers.
  • DG will extend production declines at six plants in Michigan, Kansas, Missouri, Ontario and Mexico due to continued shortages of chips.
  • NHTSA requested data on Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) from 12 automakers, to compare ADAS-equipped vehicles as part of the agency’s investigation into Tesla’s accidents involving its autopilot system.
  • Ford will be a partner with IA Argo and Walmart test an autonomous vehicle delivery service for customers in certain areas of Miami; Austin, Texas; and Washington DC, starting later this year.
  • Electric vehicles and low emission technology:
    • Ford will invest $ 250 million to double the production capacity of its All-Electric F-150 Lightning Pickup Truck to 80,000 units per year; this vehicle is scheduled for release in spring 2022.
    • Rivien builds its first production unit of the R1T battery-powered electric van, and the company begins deliveries to customers this month.
    • DG will extend a production stop for Chevrolet Bolt EV three weeks because it fixes battery issues which led to the recall of vehicles. In addition, owners of certain Bolt vehicles have been asked to park 50 feet from other vehicles in car parks, due to the risk of vehicle fire.
    • SK Innovation plans to separated from its battery business, and the unit is expected to first launch as a wholly owned subsidiary next month.

Market trends and regulation

  • Price of iron and steel have almost doubled over the past year, based on commodity data tracked by the federal government. The increase is attributed to strong demand, as well as tariffs on imported steel.
  • NHTSA opened a new investigation into approximately 30 million American vehicles with potentially defective Takata airbag inflators. The probe covers model years 2001 through 2019 and nearly two dozen automakers.
  • Automotive and steel companies are striving to achieve the long-term goal of develop low carbon steel, as regulatory pressures intensify to increase sustainable manufacturing processes.
  • US Department of Commerce and White House Economic Advisor Brian Deese will organize a meeting on the semiconductor supply chain with industry leaders on September 23.

OEM / suppliers

  • Impact on production of the semiconductor shortage
    • Stellantis announced downtime for his Jefferson North Assembly Plant in Detroit for the week of September 20, affecting production of the Jeep Grand Cherokee SUV.
    • Volkswagen predicted the semiconductor shortage will not improve until the second half of 2022.
  • A GM joint venture in China with partners, SAIC Motor Corp. and Guangxi Automobile Group, said it intends to increase the use of locally sourced fleas over the next five years. The comments were made at the World Congress for New Energy Vehicles, and the partners also said they have been developing automotive chips since 2018. However, it was not clear whether the focus was on the design or manufacture of fleas.
  • Volvo is preparing for a first public offering “in the coming weeks”, according to anonymous sources in Reuters. Volvo and its parent company, Geely Holding, did not comment on the article.
  • The MoveOn political action committee has draw attention To DG for donating to members of Congress who voted in January against certification of the 2020 presidential election results. Earlier this summer, Toyotacampaign contributions have been the subject of negative comment by the Lincoln Project.
  • DG intends to make “substantial changes” in its supply chain, including “Establish direct relationships” with chipmakers, according to remarks by CEO Mary Barra.
  • Ford‘s Flat rock assembly plant resumption of production September 20, following a two-week shutdown caused by a gas leak.

Connected / autonomous vehicles and mobility services

  • You’re here announced that its customers will soon be able to request a improved version of its driver assistance software designed for urban environments. However, the National Transport Safety Office said the company would need to address security concerns in its existing technology before offering extended functionality.
  • China is develop a system To monitor data sent abroad by vehicles, according to a statement from the China Automotive Engineering Research Institute Co. Automakers including Tesla, Ford and BMW recently announced plans to set up local data centers in China as the country takes steps to increase surveillance data collected by private companies.

Electric vehicles and low emission technology

  • Electronics contract manufacturing company Foxconn put his EV project with Byton on hold, due to the “deterioration of the financial situation” of the Chinese startup, according to anonymous sources in Nikkei Asia.
  • A Chinese startup supported by an electric vehicle manufacturer Xpeng Inc. announcement he will deliver electric flying cars to customers in 2024.
  • Vitesco Technologies, a Continental spin-off that focuses on electrified powertrains, has begun public commerce on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange last week.
  • The Lucid air luxury sedan has received EPA rated range of up to 520 miles on a full charge. It is the first electric vehicle to exceed a rated range of 500 miles.
  • According to a recent report from Earthjustice, “widely deployed green hydrogen is at least a decade away,” and green hydrogen is less efficient than using renewable electricity. Green hydrogen does not produce greenhouse gas emissions and does not use fossil fuels, but today hydrogen is most often produced using fossil fuels.

Prepared by Julie Dautermann, Competitive Intelligence Analyst

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