AD #2068 – Could Trump Raise Car Import Taxes?, Converting Wastewater to Biofuel, Training Techs with Virtual Reality

March 17th, 2017 at 11:50am

Runtime: 7:55

To watch this episode on YouTube click here.

- Training Techs with Virtual Reality
- Converting Wastewater to Biofuel
- NVIDIA & Bosch Create AI Self-Driving Computer
- Goodyear’s Futuristic Tires
- 37 Seconds in the Autoline Garage
- Could Trump Raise Car Import Taxes?

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35 Comments to “AD #2068 – Could Trump Raise Car Import Taxes?, Converting Wastewater to Biofuel, Training Techs with Virtual Reality”

  1. David Sprowl Says:

    So some automakers might leave the US market. That likely will not be a big deal to most. There are a number of name plates we do not see in the US – Peugoet, Citroen, Scania, and others. We have a large market, so does China. It appears to me that a “sell it here, make it here” policy aint all bad. Manufactures can scale, they already do. Knock down kits to contract manufacturing. Put US workers back to work is not a bad thing.

  2. Tuck&roll Says:

    I’m looking forward to the President’s announcement next week. Disguising foreign manufactured products in a domestic badge and still maintaining high profits has never seemed right to me. And I’m not just talking about cars. How long have we been told that NAFTA and GAT are good for America, I.e. quality products for a cheap price. Really? How many times has China produced shoddy products sold in the US with lack of quality control that meets US standards from baby formula to exploding smart phones? Yes, I have bought foreign cars in the past. Not anymore. If more Americans are put back to work, God bless President Trump. Proud to drive an F150.

  3. WineGeek Says:

    I often wonder if raising taxes is the best way to control imports here. If the US market is so much more profitable than China or other markets why don’t the US manufacturers price their vehicles more aggressively and beat the imports at their own game? Everyone seems to be in such a hurry to build in China to make less money per vehicle. Let’s get competitive, put more people to work in the US and still have an open market.

  4. Buzzerd Says:

    It’s possible that some manufacturing would return and or some would not and consumers would just have to pay more,it’s also more possible that a trade war would start with several countries.

  5. MJB Says:

    John, given the way inflation and C.O.G.S. has run away from wages since the time of Ford’s Model T (when all manufacturing was domestic, yet virtually everyone could still afford a car), do you have any numbers that suggest what sort of increase we’d see in the cost of vehicles if manufacturers were forced to produce/source 100% U.S.?

    Just considering a product of my own that I’m preparing to bring to market now, I know for a fact that if I had to source it all domestically I’d be out of business before I even began. Not only would my profit margin be shot to complete crap, it would end up costing way more than the consumer is willing to spend on it. I’d be dead in the water. For some products (like mine) oversees manufacturing is not just the difference between a large profit and a small one, it’s the difference between being in business and not.

  6. Lex Says:

    Your piece on converting waste water into Bio Fuel sounds very interesting but what is the true cost of this conversion per gallon compared to a gallon of good old gasoline?

  7. Jim Haines Says:

    Lincoln Electric has had welding simulators for along time for welding classes,schools and votech colleges not sure Honda has broken any ground on this one

  8. Buzzerd Says:

    Our dump in town uses the methane gas from the piles to heat the buildings and I believe power some of the vehicles.

  9. Buzzerd Says:

    The sewage treatment plant does as well

  10. Lex Says:

    I think President Trump would consider alternative measurements before imposing a flat 25% import tax on vehicles imported into the United States. If OEMs could demonstrate that their vehicles are built with US manufactured and sourced parts but were assembled outside the United States the import tax could be portionally reduced. I submit this example: A vehicle sourced with 50% of it’s parts from inside the United States but assembled in Mexico would only have a 12.5% tariff tax imposed on it. This is a simple example but you get the idea. This is were the OEMs and their lobbyists need to present a “plan” in the form of an “offer” to President Trump in order to play “The Art of the Deal”!

  11. Kit Gerhart Says:

    I like buying American products too, but the bottom line is that I buy what I want. I have an American Corvette, a Japanese Prius, a British Mini, and a Canadian Dodge minivan. I have other products, like a phone, and two computers from Asia, the computers, made in China, from a well known company named after a fruit.

    The bottom line, is that if Trump institutes his import tariffs, the short term result is that fewer people will buy cars, assuming the OEM’s will pass on the taxes to customers. The companies won’t, and can’t immediately start building everything in the U.S., and won’t try, knowing that Trump is not forever.

    It makes sense for car companies to build where they sell, and, to a large extent, that is what they do. Ford builds Fiestas in Mexico, and other countries where they sell a lot of them, rather than building them in the U.S., where they sell a few. BMW builds X5′s in America, where their biggest market is located.

  12. XA351GT Says:

    If it brings back jobs to the US I’m all for it. I’d rather see people get a paycheck and pay their taxes instead of sitting back collecting welfare because there is no jobs that can support them and their families. I believe that many people would rather help themselves than rely on handouts ,but if you get more sitting at home you can understand why they do it.

    Also I’d like to see the regulations on trade more a mirror to what our companies have to deal with selling in foriegn countries. Example ,Japan they sell most of their production here or a great % of it yet our companies are severely restricted trying sell anything there. Imagine what would happen to their car industry if all we did was imitate their own trade policy. Anyone wonder how a tny country compared to the US can have 5 + car companies yet we are down to 2 1/2 ?

  13. XA351GT Says:

    More or less ,want to sell here , then you build it here.

  14. Buzzerd Says:

    I thought John has stated before that one of the biggest reasons for manufacturers to build in Mexico is they have a trade agreement with almost every country in the world. Sooo if you are a manufacturer do you build at great expense a plant or plants in a country that doesn’t have the same agreements and is possibly screwing up the ones they do have or leave things as is and pass the cost on to the consumers?

  15. Kit Gerhart Says:

    From an article at:

    http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2017/01/26/business/abes-trump-dilemma-getting-japan-buy-u-s-cars/#.WMwUdBiZNE4

    “The fact is that Japan does not apply tariffs to U.S. cars . . . and regarding nontariff areas, we do not discriminate against them . . . in comparison with Japanese cars,” he said. “I want to explain this to the U.S. side when I have the opportunity.”

    There are few American cars sold in Japan, because few people in Japan want to buy huge left hand drive pickup trucks, or other uniquely American vehicles. Yes, maybe you can’t register such vehicles in Japan, nor should you be able to, as we can’t register right hand drive Japanese home market vehicles, unless they are 25 years old.

  16. Albemarle Says:

    It’s interesting to see how people ‘negotiate’. People are not considering what other countries will do in response. Does GM, Ford and FCA want to kiss goodbye to selling anyplace except the US? That is too much market to walk away from. This sort of tax always results in over-reaction by others, and the reaction will not just be a tax on imported cars. The WTO allows other remedies that will hurt the U S a lot more.

  17. Lex Says:

    @ 15, Kit don’t you find it ironic that the Japanese says they do not “discriminate” against US built vehicles? They do “discriminate” to protect the “Japanese home market vehicles”. This is the type of “Protectionism” Pres. Trump is talking about. He wants “Fairness” when it comes to trading partners no matter who they are.

  18. gary susie Says:

    I don’t believe tariff’s are the way to go,as it will only come back to bite you in the butt. I would rather see american’s buy american and keep their neighbor and friends and relatives working.

  19. Victor West Says:

    With world population growing, the US could become a shrinking market for manufacturers. Trade wars never lead to good results. Much of the US loss of jobs has to do with automation and technology, and less need of manual skills.

  20. Kit Gerhart Says:

    17 Japan “discriminates” against US built vehicles in the same way that the US discriminates against Japanese vehicles. The US doesn’t allow vehicles that don’t meet US safety, lighting, crashworthiness, emissions, and all of the other standards. The Japanese build vehicles to those standards, specifically for the US market. Few American vehicles are built to Japanese standards, including with right hand drive. If anything, the Japanese discriminate less. Aren’t there a few late model Corvettes, and other “uniquely American” cars sold, and registered for road use in Japan?

  21. Ziggy Says:

    Decreasing competition in the American auto industry by taxing imports will never be a good thing for consumers of those cars. Do you really think the quality of American cars would be as high as it is today if it weren’t for the competition from the Japanese brands? How quickly we forget how the Toyotas and Hondas of the world made our American car companies sit up and take notice of how terrible their quality was and get them to shape up or go broke selling inferior products. Long live global competition!

  22. Joseph Cuffaro Says:

    You must look at the non-tariff barriers when analyzing American imports to Japan.
    The Japanese have created rules to make it almost impossible to hang on to an American car for more than a year due to the high cost of inspections and other discretionary maintenance imposed by the Japanese authorities. Hence no Japanese wants an American car.

  23. maxx507 Says:

    There are plants in this country that already use this German based system.The problem is the end product is very acidic and some engine manufactures will void warranties if used.

  24. ArtG. Says:

    #2. The signatories to NAFTA are the U.S., Canada, and Mexico. Nothing to do with substandard Chinese goods here.

    Did you mean “GATT?” If so, that was in effect from 1948 to 1995 and later morphed in the WTO.

  25. Terry Says:

    Methane has a greenhouse gas potential ranging from 28-36. That means if you believe CO2 causes the planet to heat, methane is at least 28 times worse than CO2 in doing that. So capturing and burning methane, especially that caused by sources like sewage plants and cow farts (no plan on how to do that yet) is a good idea.

  26. cwolf Says:

    I don’t think raising the import tax will have the effect we all expect if Trump eliminates the many types of subsidies the US manufacturers have become accustom to over the years. Money given for EV R&D, emission technology are just two examples. This loss of cash will raise prices that may be comparable to the cost of import tax increases. Then again, what Trump says and does are two different things.

  27. Drew Says:

    If the biofuel is from distilled waste, I wonder if the exhaust will smell like feces.

  28. Kit Gerhart Says:

    25 A few years ago, a friend was burning used fryer oil in an older Benz diesel, and the exhaust smelled a little like French fries.

  29. John Says:

    Would potential import taxes only be on autos? I read that Ivanka Trump imports tons of Chinese products for her clothing and fashion lines. And has pending orders for tons more in the current year. This could get interesting.

  30. Kit Gerhart Says:

    …and essentially all consumer electronics items are imported, most from China.

  31. Kit Gerhart Says:

    Coincidentally, some neighbors are replacing most of their appliances, and the new ones were delivered this morning. They are LG brand, at least the refrigerator and range were made in Mexico. If Trump wants a trade war, it should include more than autos. As others have said, though, trade wars are nearly always counterproductive. This stuff isn’t simple.

  32. Chuck Grenci Says:

    LG is a South Korean owned company making appliances all over the world; yes, “this stuff isn’t simple”.

  33. John Says:

    Agree with Kit #29 and Chuck #30. Could be counterproductive and this gets complex really fast (sorta like health coverage). :-)

  34. G.A.Branigan Says:

    and now it’s time for something completely different:

    https://www.youtube.com/embed/lN8eEOz7PeY?rel=0

  35. veh Says:

    Love the idea of using VR for tech training. It would be very interesting to use technology to improve service manuals, parts catalogs, etc. where you could “remove” an exterior panel or component, and see what lies beneath.

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