Episode 24 – Nissan’s New Catalyst, Bailout Gets Messy, Europe Opposes Bailout

November 14th, 2008 at 12:08pm

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Chances of a bailout seem to dim because of a lame-duck Congress. Europe doesn’t like a Big 3 bailout and might file a complaint with the World Trade Organization. Nissan invents a new catalytic converter that uses half the precious metals of a conventional catalyst. All that and more, plus a preview of this week’s Autoline Detroit that takes a look at the Big 3 bailout.

Transcript and Story Links after the jump . . .

Here are today’s top headlines. Chances of a bailout seem to dim. Europe doesn’t like a Big 3 bailout. Nissan invents new catalytic converter.

Up next, we’ll be back with the news behind the headlines.

This is Autoline Daily for Friday, November 14, 2008. And now, the news.

Wow, the bailout mess for the auto industry just gets messier. The Wall Street Journal reports that, like we reported here yesterday, it’s going to be hard to get a bailout bill out of this lame-duck session of Congress. Republican opposition to the bailout is stiffening, and some Democrats are arguing that it’s better to wait until Barack Obama is sworn in as President, rather than risk losing a vote right now.

Our media partner WWJ reports that in Europe there are rumblings of filing a complaint to the World Trade Organization claiming that the bailout of the Big 3 is illegal. And the Financial Times in the UK reports that the three largest credit insurance companies in Europe have yanked their coverage for automotive suppliers who do business with GM, and Ford. This is credit insurance that covers suppliers in case one of the car companies was to go out of business. The cut-off primarily affects suppliers operations in Europe.

Autoblog Reports that Ferrari, Rolls-Royce and Land Rover are following Porsche and pulling out of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. This is probably because of the global economic slowdown and the fact that they don’t have any big product news to announce. This move shows that even the most prestigious car brands are hurting right now.

Hey, here’s a new trend in public relations. Recently, both BMW and Audi hosted live ‘webcasts’ to highlight new technologies and products. Webcasts go beyond just words and pictures on a page. They’re just like real press conferences but broadcast over the internet. These events are even interactive. Journalists can ask questions in real-time by typing them in on the webpage. Live webcasts are probably a lot cheaper than hosting a real press conference and nobody has to travel anywhere, so look for more and more automakers to start using these types of promotions going forward.

Nissan announced it will introduce an ultra-low precious metal catalyst on the new Cube. The catalyst uses half the precious metals compared with conventional catalysts which chops the price dramatically. The technology was developed under the Renault-Nissan Alliance, and will be used in future Renault vehicles as well as diesel engines.

Speaking of diesels, Delphi expects to double its diesel injector sales (subscription required) over the next three years thanks to Euro5 emissions controls. According to WardsAuto.com, this includes a direct-acting piezo injector Delphi developed for Mercedes. Delphi believes by using the technology they can develop engines that will require less-expensive after treatment to meet Euro6 emissions rules in 2014.

Coming up next I’ll announce the winner of some exclusive Autoline Gear, and we’ll preview this week’s Autoline Detroit.

On Autoline Detroit this week I interview Dr. David Cole of the Center for Automotive Research and Mike Stanton, the President of the Association of International Automobile Manufacturers. It’s all about their analysis of what will happen next week in Washington over the bailout of the Detroit three. After that, I chat with Steve Henderson, Dow Automotive’s President of the Americas, about the safety foam they developed for the Car of Tomorrow for NASCAR which, at first, wasn’t particularly well-received.

Don’t forget, if you want to hear the rest of my interview with Steve Henderson or learn about what’s happening in Washington, you can watch the whole episode of Autoline Detroit on our website later this afternoon.

Well, it’s the moment you’ve all been waiting for. If you signed up for our daily newsletter in the last week, you’re eligible to win some Autoline gear. This week we’re giving away a stylish T-shirt and hat. My crack team has chosen one lucky person at random. Pookie, the envelope please. And the winner is . . . Joe Hanzes, Joe Hanzes. Congratulations Joe!

If you haven’t signed up for our e-mail newsletter yet, it’s not too late! You can still get every episode of Autoline Daily delivered right to your inbox. Just click on the newsletter link on our website, Autoline Daily.TV. And if you sign up between today and next Friday, you’ll be eligible for next week’s prize giveaway. We’ll be offering a 10th Anniversary Autoline DVD, and an Autoline coffee mug, so sign up now!

Anyway, that’s it for today’s top news in the global automotive industry. Thanks for watching, we’ll see you next week.

7 Comments to “Episode 24 – Nissan’s New Catalyst, Bailout Gets Messy, Europe Opposes Bailout”

  1. Tom Says:

    Lol whats with pookie the glove thing.

  2. John Says:

    “Europe doesn’t like a Big 3 bailout and might file a complaint with the World Trade Organization. ”

    John McElroy, Can we see the addresses of these Europeans representatives on “K” Street in Washington, DC ?

    “The Best Government Money can Buy.”

  3. Richard Tait Says:

    The European Union would be well-advised to remember their decision to assist Airbus with its A380 programme. In turn, the US should refrain from making such calls when the EU attempts to bail somebody else out in the future. Governments should be allowed to help their citizens by securing jobs by whatever means necessary, as long as doing so does not directly infringe on the sovereignty of another country. As for those insurance companies in Europe pulling coverage for automotive suppliers, it’s nothing new. Insurance companies all over the world do whatever to “protect” themselves and couldn’t care less about anything or anyone. In a few months look for all our premiums to go up anyway and they will cite this very turmoil as the reason.

    Finally, John, the comment by Julius Lambert concerns me. It wreaks of incoherency, racism, and quite a bit of alcohol.

  4. Ryan D Says:

    You guys are all seriously kidding, right? How many innovations used throughout the world were invented in the US by GM, Ford or Chrysler? How many jobs depend on the “Big 3″? All Americans now forced to buy import vehicles? This a joke told in beyond tasteless style. Bailout is required, not optional. However, lets put it where it needs to be. The CxO’s and all the upper management either take massive pay cuts or just plain get canned. They will not be rewarded for running a strategic US industry into the ground. Next, the UAW needs to go bye-bye. They’ve been extorting ridiculous salaries and bene’s out of us for faaar too long. $1500/car in legacy bene’s? Not for long. That will help level the field. I have bought GM as long as I could drive (24 years) and still have a great inexpensive car, an 06 GM Cobalt. They have some very competitive and in some cases best in class vehicles, but to even think about allowing the largest automaker on the planet to close is not even an option. We must act now, I am a Republican but I totally buck them on this one, the auto makers must be saved.

  5. Traffic Generation Tips Says:

    Excellent content…keep up the good work!

  6. John Says:

    Ryan D,

    I agree, the Republicans have lost their minds when they want to let the Big Three and their suppliers fail.

    They were falling all over themselves to blindly bail out the crooks on Wall Street. Those morons think that “financing” will fix housing, autos, and the economy.


    It is JOBS that will build the foundation of the economic recovery.

    “Free Trade” and “The Global Economy” have destroyed the American Consumer and 70 percent of the U.S. Economy.

    Jobs lost to outsourced manufacturing. Jobs lost to H1-B visas and H1-B visa overstays. Jobs Lost to ILLEGAL Aliens stealing work from Legal U.S. Citizens and reducing the labor rate that can be charged because they avoid taxes when they are paid in cash working “off the books” in construction, landscaping, painting, Verizon Fios Contracting etc.

    Look, Wall Street and K Street DC Morons, U.S. Legal Citizens Need a JOB to Buy A House, A Car, Take A Vacation, Go Out to Dinner, and yes, to make monthly “financing” payments.

    Until you kick out the Illegals, H1-B visa overstays, and Bring Jobs Back to the United States of America, There WILL NOT BE A RECOVERY.

    The “Service Economy” is an economic myth and a disaster for the American Dream.

  7. Todd Jaspers Says:

    The EU need to mind their own business. If France is going to bail out AirBus and no one else makes a peep, then why shouldn’t we be able to bail out our own? Although, I don’t support the bail-out anyway. We need to eliminate the UAW contracts. The UAW should be not for profit… not a profit seeking corporation. Everyone seems to forget that fact… the UAW is a CORPORATION. They make money, there is a board of directors. They wouldn’t be able to afford the Black Lake golf resort, or those fancy hundred thousand dollar banquet dinners twice a year in Chicago.