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0:30 Mitsubishi Ousts Ghosn
1:14 GM Closes Oshawa Plant in Canada
2:32 Ford’s “Sleep Suit” Mimics Drowsy Driving
3:30 More Kia Soul Details
4:38 Hamilton Wins Last F1 Race In 2018
4:47 Top OEMs by Production
On today’s show…GM is closing another manufacturing plant, this time in Canada…Ford creates a suit to demonstrate the dangers of drowsy driving…and we’ll take a look at the top automakers in terms of production. All that and more coming right up on Autoline Daily.
This is Autoline Daily the voice of the automotive industry.
MITSUBISHI OUSTS GHOSN
In an unsurprising move, Mitsubishi’s board voted to remove Carlos Ghosn as chairman, just days after he was fired by alliance partner Nissan. However, he still remains Chairman and CEO of Renault. Reuters reports that executives from the alliance will meet this week to discuss their operations. Ghosn wanted to strengthen the alliance but Nissan wants more control of its operations. Renault owns a 43% stake in Nissan, while Nissan only has a 15% non-voting stake in Renault. But Nissan is much bigger and outsells Renault by 60%. So, it seems like it will be a struggle to keep the alliance together.
GM CLOSES OSHAWA PLANT IN CANADA
Over the past year or so, General Motors has been shuttering operations around the world. It stopped selling vehicles in India, it sold off all of its operations in Europe. And it’s no longer manufacturing cars in Russia, Indonesia, Australia and South Africa. And now it’s being reported that GM will close its Oshawa plant in Ontario, Canada. The company is expected to make the announcement later today, which will lead to around 2,500 layoffs. The company makes the Chevy Impala, Cadillac XTS, Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra at the facility. The closure comes at the same time GM is trying to reduce its salaried workforce in North America. It was hoping that 7,000 employees would accept voluntary buyouts but it could layoff workers if not enough accept them. GM is expected to address that today as well.
Kia reveals more details about the new Soul. And we’ll share those with you, right after this.
FORD’S “SLEEP SUIT” MIMICS DROWSY DRIVING
I think all people, when sober, know that drinking and driving is a bad idea. But did you know staying awake for more than 18 hours and getting behind the wheel can be comparable to drunk driving? And in the U.S., most drowsy driving crashes are caused by people under 25. So, in an effort to help those drivers, Ford has created a “Sleep Suit” that mimics the effects of being really tired. Special goggles replicate “microsleeps,” which are uncontrollable, brief episodes of sleep that can last anywhere from a fraction of a second up to 10 seconds. And a weighted hat, vest, arm and ankle bands simulate being run down. Ford says it will integrate the “Sleep Suit” into its young driver training program for 17- to 24-year-olds. But, just to note, a caffeinated drink and a 20-min “power nap” could be all that’s needed to get you home safely.
MORE KIA SOUL DETAILS
We’ve teased it already, but here’s the best look yet at the new Kia Soul. The headlights appear to be more aggressive than the outgoing model and Kia announced there’s a new ruggedly styled X-Line that will join the model range. The naturally aspirated 1.6L engine is gone, but the naturally aspirated 2.0L and turbo 1.6L remain. As does the EV version. The new Soul will debut in LA this week and then go on sale in the U.S. in the first half of 2019 with global markets to follow.
Speaking of LA, we’ll be at the show. So look for our coverage later in the week on our website, Autoline.tv.
Can you guess, which automakers make the most vehicles? We’ll show you the answer, right after this.
HAMILTON WINS LAST F1 RACE IN 2018
In racing news over the weekend, there was a bit of a scare on the first lap in Formula 1 as Nico Hulkenberg barrel rolled into the barriers, but he was ok and Lewis Hamilton settled in his Mercedes to cap off his championship season with another win at the final race in Abu Dhabi.
TOP OEMs BY PRODUCTION
While automakers say it doesn’t matter, they love to have bragging rights over their competitors. And it terms of production, the Volkswagen Group is the clear leader in the auto industry. It will make over 11.1 million vehicles this year according to AutoForecast Solutions. It’s followed by Toyota at nearly 10.5 million units. Then there’s a big drop off to the Hyundai Group, which will build 7.7 million vehicles. And rounding out the top 5 is General Motors and Ford. And by 2025, there won’t be too much change to the list, except for Ford and General Motors swapping spots.
|TOP 5 OEMs BY PRODUCTION|
|Source: AutoForecast Solutions|
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John McElroy is an influential thought leader in the automotive industry. He is a journalist, lecturer, commentator and entrepreneur. He created “Autoline Daily,” the first industry webcast of industry news and analysis.