November 14th, 2008 at 12:08pm
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.