|Bid||36.90 x 800|
|Ask||37.05 x 1300|
|Day's Range||36.72 - 37.11|
|52 Week Range||31.46 - 41.90|
|Beta (3Y Monthly)||1.42|
|PE Ratio (TTM)||6.01|
|Earnings Date||Feb. 5, 2020|
|Forward Dividend & Yield||1.52 (4.13%)|
|1y Target Est||47.39|
Long before the pistons for General Motors Co V-6 engines reach the U.S. No. 1 automaker's Romulus, Michigan plant, they are seasoned international travellers. The parts make four international border crossings in all, without a single tariff levied. "They already have their passports," said Jim Bovenzi, GM's executive director of global supply chain on a recent tour of the Romulus plant.
Investing.com - U.S. futures pointed to a higher opening Monday, as positive chatter on the trade front helped boost investor confidence.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- As recently as March, Daimler AG, the German carmaker, promised to put 10,000 autonomous taxis on the streets by 2021. But this week, Daimler chairman Ola Kaellenius announced that the company was taking a “reality check” on the project and focusing on self-driving long-haul trucks instead. It’s fine that self-driving cabs aren’t coming as fast as some expected — and it’s even better that Silicon Valley-style big talk appears to be going out of fashion.Kaellenius’s “reality check” has some solid business reasons: Daimler is cutting costs and can’t commit to a large, capital-intensive project without a clear idea of what kind of first-mover advantage it might confer. But mostly, it comes because of a long-obvious technical problem. Making sure self-driving cars aren’t a menace in city traffic is a job that’ll take more than a couple of years. Investigators are still trying to get to the bottom of the March 2018 accident in which a driverless Uber killed a pedestrian in Tempe, Arizona, and it appears Uber Inc.’s cars had been involved in dozens of previous nonfatal incidents in the course of the same testing program. No one wants to be in the same situation as Uber — so General Motors Co. subsidiary Cruise won’t be launching self-driving taxis in San Francisco this year, as previously promised, and maybe not next year, either. There's been lots of news stories about Waymo Llc, an Alphabet Inc. subsidiary, launching a self-driving taxi service in Arizona, and in April, it even put an app for it on the Google Play store. But in September, Morgan Stanley lowered Waymo’s valuation because of delays in the commercial use of its technology, and last month, Waymo chief executive John Krafcik said driverless delivery trucks could come before a taxi service.For European carmakers, which have to deal with older cities not laid out on a grid, launching autonomous taxi services appears even more daunting than for Americans. They know it’s a long way from Tempe to Amsterdam or Rome. That’s one reason Volkswagen AG, a latecomer to self-driving development, isn’t worried about being overtaken. Alexander Hitzinger, chief executive of Volkswagen’s autonomous-vehicle subsidiary, said in a recent interview that even an industry pioneer such as Waymo was “a long way away from commercializing the technology” and that Volkswagen’s autonomous vehicles would be developed by the mid-2020s.That time frame may be no more realistic than the previous hype about big 2019 and 2020 launches. Autonomous car developers can complain all they want about unpredictable human drivers and pedestrians who are causing all the accidents with their flawlessly superhuman creations, but nobody is going to clear the cities of people to give self-driving cars a spotless safety record. And making sure that, after millions of hours of training, artificial intelligence is finally able to drive like a human after a few hundred hours on the road, is not all that’s required for robotaxis to be viable. There's still the whole matter of figuring out how to reduce rather than increase urban congestion by using cars that don't “think” like humans.It’s also dangerous to adopt any kind of specific framework for the launch of automated truck services, even though that’s an easier project than taxis because the routes are fixed. The presence of humans in what is still a predominantly human world has rather unpredictable consequences for robot behavior. And the first movers have an obvious disadvantage: Like Uber with a taxi, they can get burned in ways that could set the whole business back years, and the earnings potential is unclear.None of this means, of course, that self-driving development has failed or even hit a dead end. Given enough time and a few technological breakthroughs, autonomous vehicles will be safe around actual people in actual winding, narrow, crowded streets. Engineering challenges exist to be overcome. The problem isn’t with the tech, which is moving along at a reasonably rapid pace, but with how that progress is communicated.Nobody forced experienced managers at venerable companies such as Daimler or GM to make overly optimistic statements about self-driving taxi launches. Waymo is a cash-burning startup, and it’s difficult to hold it responsible for getting ahead of itself. But the adults in the room look silly for having tried to play catch-up. There’s no reason for the big car companies to make any promises on self-driving at all. Unlike with vehicle electrification, which is part of many countries' climate policies, there’s no regulatory pressure to eliminate human drivers. And autonomous mobility-related business models are purely theoretical at this point.It would be enough for companies involved in autonomous car development to say they’re working on it. Pretty much all the big players are, to some extent. The time for any other kind of announcement will come when someone is really ready to launch a commercial service, whenever that may be. No rush.To contact the author of this story: Leonid Bershidsky at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Tobin Harshaw at email@example.comThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Leonid Bershidsky is Bloomberg Opinion's Europe columnist. He was the founding editor of the Russian business daily Vedomosti and founded the opinion website Slon.ru.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
The United Auto Workers union said on Friday that rank-and-file members at Ford Motor Co have voted in favor of a new four-year labor contract with the No. 2 U.S. automaker. Talks with FCA are expected to begin on Monday, a UAW spokesman said. The union said 56.3% of Ford's hourly workers voted to approve the deal, which allowed the company to avoid a strike like the one that cost its larger rival General Motors Co about $3 billion (£2.3 billion).
(Bloomberg) -- The U.S. Federal Communications Commission has proposed taking back some of the spectrum long promised to automakers and re-allocating it to other wireless uses, according to people familiar with the matter.It’s a potentially significant development in a years-long debate that saw automakers fight to retain frequencies they’ve barely used. Carmakers say they’re poised to finally use the airwaves to connect vehicles and infrastructure to prevent collisions.The FCC sent the proposal to the Transportation Department in recent days, said two people who asked not to be identified discussing the private deliberations. If DOT agrees, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai could set a Dec. 12 vote on the proposal to modify the grant of airwaves it made 20 years ago.The Transportation Department has long resisted the idea and remains concerned and will likely oppose the FCC’s latest plan, one of the people said.Representatives for both agencies declined to comment.Cable providers who offer Wi-Fi for customers’ wireless use are hungry for spectrum as digital technology transforms everything from cars to video feeds and household appliances.More airwaves are needed to help “deliver a future of ubiquitous connectivity,” Charter Communications Inc. said in a Nov. 12 filing. Charter’s network supports more than 300 million devices, the Stamford, Connecticut-based company said.Auto industry companies including General Motors Co., Toyota Motor Corp. and Denso Corp. spent more than a decade developing vehicle-to-vehicle, or “V2V,” communications systems to link cars, roadside beacons and traffic lights into a seamless wireless communication web to avoid collisions and heed speed limits. Yet deployments have been few, and no major automakers produce cars using the technology in the U.S.The auto industry has broadly shifted to favor a newer technology based on cellular systems, in part because it offers a path to transition to 5G systems in the future, proponents of the FCC’s plan say.Ford announced earlier this year that it will outfit all its new U.S. models starting in 2022 with cellular vehicle-to-everything technology. The system would enable Ford’s cars to communicate with one another about road hazards, talk to stop lights to smooth traffic flow and pay the bill automatically while picking up fast food.Automakers and their allies last year asked the FCC to let them use part of the band for cellular-based technology - rather than the Wi-Fi format the agency mandated in 1999 - while preserving all of the airwaves for transportation safety. In a petition the companies said the newer, cellular technology is more reliable, with greater range.The airwaves could be used for fast communications including machine-to-machine links, and smart city applications such as smart cameras, traffic monitoring and security sensors, NCTA-The Internet & Television Association, a trade group for companies including Comcast and Charter, told the FCC in a Sept. 25 filing.(Updates with Charter filing in seventh paragraph.)\--With assistance from Keith Naughton.To contact the reporters on this story: Ryan Beene in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.org;Todd Shields in Washington at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Jon Morgan at firstname.lastname@example.org, Elizabeth WassermanFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- If the U.S. is going to make a big dent in income inequality and raise living standards for the middle class, it’s going to need a multipronged approach. Higher taxes and more spending on health care will help. Minimum-wage laws can raise pay for workers at the bottom without reducing employment much, but they only benefit a relatively small slice of the workforce. But something else is needed.One big idea is to bring back unions and collective bargaining. Several teams of economists have examined the historical record and concluded that unions were important in reducing inequality. But although unions are still important in the public sector, in the private sector they’ve been almost wiped out.People argue about the cause of the decline. Some blame weak enforcement of labor laws or the rise of state right-to-work laws. Others blame global competition and technology. But Martin Manley, an entrepreneur who previously served as assistant secretary of the Labor Department under President Bill Clinton, thinks he has the answer. In a new book titled “A Better Bargain: Organizing Employers and Workers to Grow America’s Middle Class,” Manley argues that the U.S. union system was doomed from the start.Before 1935, Manley notes, there were several types of collective bargaining in the U.S. But the one that ended up being enshrined in law, in the National Labor Relations Act, was called enterprise bargaining. Under that law, workers at each workplace have to vote to unionize; if they do, all workers at that workplace are covered by the union contract. If they reject the union down, however, there’s no collective bargaining.This system has a huge downside: competition. Suppose the workers at a McDonald’s want to form a union. The managers know that if the workers unionize, wages will go up and prices for hamburgers at that McDonald’s will rise. That will put the restaurant at a competitive disadvantage versus the non-unionized Burger King down the street, eventually resulting in layoffs. The managers will make this argument to the workers, who probably will find it convincing.If both the McDonald’s and the Burger King could coordinate and unionize together, competition would be no problem; wages would rise and the profits of the two giant corporations might fall while consumers paid higher prices for burgers. But because U.S. labor law forces each workplace to act independently on unionization, they can’t effectively coordinate. The situation is even worse for companies such as General Motors that face international competition because there’s no way for GM workers to coordinate with Volkswagen workers in Europe or Toyota workers in Asia.Manley has a two-pronged solution to this problem. Both pieces would require a major rewrite of U.S. labor law. And both would involve a shift from enterprise-level bargaining to sectoral bargaining, with negotiations taking place in an entire industry, not individual workplaces or companies.The first piece is industry associations — groups of companies in the same industry and region that bargain collectively with their workers all at once. Though it might seem counterintuitive to let employers collaborate like this, it would remove the competitive threat that unions represent, because the resulting agreements would constrain all businesses equally. Manley suggests that industry associations could also collaborate to create more efficient and flexible labor markets by providing worker training, sharing knowledge about workers across company lines and so on.Second, Manley would make unions nonexclusive. Under his preferred system, an industry association would bargain simultaneously with all the organizations that workers in that industry belonged to, be they unions, worker co-ops, professional associations or advocacy groups. The various worker groups would be awarded representation at the negotiating table proportional to their membership (which could overlap). Manley envisions various worker groups competing with each other for members by offering services other than wage bargaining.These are good ideas. To really be effective, they’ll require one crucial element: that workers who don’t belong to any organization are all covered by the contracts that result from sector-level labor negotiations. A law like this is the reason that the French and German workforces are still mostly covered by collective bargaining, despite falling unionization:If combined with Manley’s idea for competing labor organizations and proportional representation in negotiations, sectoral bargaining would undo the decades-long decline in private-sector collective bargaining almost overnight. It wouldn’t require unions to rebuild their membership; all it would need is a few worker organizations to pop up and start bargaining on behalf of everyone. At first, these early movers would get almost all the seats at the negotiating table, which would induce other workers to form other organizations to get a piece of the action.Presidential candidates such as Pete Buttigieg and Elizabeth Warren have backed sectoral bargaining, showing that the idea is catching on. Innovative ideas like Manley’s could allow sectoral bargaining to take root even faster and to be carried out in a way that many employers would embrace. Ultimately, a more cooperative relationship between workers and management would result in a more sustainable system for supporting the middle class.To contact the author of this story: Noah Smith at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: James Greiff at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Noah Smith is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist. He was an assistant professor of finance at Stony Brook University, and he blogs at Noahpinion.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
U.S. retail sales rebounded in October, but consumers cut back on purchases of big-ticket household items and clothing, which could temper expectations for a strong holiday shopping season. The report from the Commerce Department on Friday pointed to a moderate pace of consumer spending that probably remains sufficient to offset some of the drag on the economy from a downturn in the industrial sector. "Consumers are easing off their spendthrift ways from the second quarter and are adopting more prudent attitudes, perhaps still nervous over trade tensions and the slowing of hiring -though that still remains robust," said Robert Frick, corporate economist at Navy Federal Credit Union in Vienna, Virginia.
Navistar's (NAV) 2019 revenues and adjusted EBITDA are likely to be hit by $140 million and $15 million, respectively, owing to the UAW strike.
(Bloomberg) -- U.S. manufacturing output slumped in October by the most in six months as an auto workers’ strike at General Motors Co. curtailed vehicle production and the trade war continued to weigh on other factories.The 0.6% decline in output followed a 0.5% decrease the previous month, Federal Reserve data showed Friday. Excluding the 7.1% drop in motor vehicle output, which was the largest since January, factory production decreased a more modest 0.1% for a second month.Total industrial production, which also includes output at mines and utilities, slumped 0.8% in October, the largest setback since May 2018.Key InsightsThe data are consistent with other reports showing cracks in the factory sector as producers grapple with sluggish global demand, slower business investment and the U.S.-China trade war. The Institute for Supply Management’s gauge contracted three straight months, while a separate index showed global manufacturing shrank in October for a sixth month.All major market groups, including consumer goods and business equipment, reported declines in output for at least a second month.Factory production may rebound next month as the striking United Auto Workers reached an agreement with GM late in October. Overall the strike cost the company nearly $3 billion and lasted 40 days.Aside from the slump in automaker output, production also retreated at makers of computers, electrical equipment, chemicals, apparel and fabricated metals.Get MoreThe median forecast of economists in the Bloomberg survey for manufacturing output called for a 0.7% decline.Of the three main industrial production groups, mining dropped for a second month on weakness in the oil patch, while utilities registered the sharpest drop since June.Capacity utilization, measuring the amount of a plant that is in use, fell to 76.7% from 77.5%. Capacity utilization at manufacturers decreased to 74.7%, the weakest since September 2017.The Fed’s monthly data are volatile and often get revised. Manufacturing, which makes up about three-fourths of total industrial production, accounts for about 11% of the U.S. economy.(Adds graphic)\--With assistance from Chris Middleton.To contact the reporter on this story: Katia Dmitrieva in Washington at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Scott Lanman at firstname.lastname@example.org, Vince GolleFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Tesla Inc.’s Model 3 and S sedans reclaimed recommendations from Consumer Reports, though the electric-car maker still ranks toward the bottom of the group’s annual reliability survey along with other U.S. automakers’ brands.The two Tesla models earned an average rating in Consumer Reports’ reliability survey, leading the organization to restore endorsements it revoked from the Model 3 in February and the Model S a year ago. Five of General Motors Co. and Fiat Chrysler Automobiles NV’s brands placed among the 10 worst in the survey, which was again dominated by Japanese and Korean carmakers.Consumer Reports’ fluctuating views of Tesla’s sedans reflect the company’s frequent design changes and rush to ramp up production, according to Jake Fisher, senior director of auto testing. The Model X still scores among the least reliable in the survey, leaving the electric-car maker’s brand ranking 23rd out of 30.“We recommend the Model 3 with a caveat,” Fisher said in an interview. “I don’t know what will happen in the next six or 12 months because the car keeps changing, so results may vary.”GM’s WoesReliability issues for established automakers including GM and Volkswagen AG frequently relate to their new vehicles offering technologically advanced features for the first time, such as touchscreen infotainment and driver-assistance systems.“GM really has consistently had problems with new model launches as they add new technology, and it was across the board for their vehicles,” Fisher said. Three of its four brands finished in the bottom 10, with Cadillac finishing dead last, thanks in part to a troublesome infotainment system. VW’s namesake fell nine spots to 27th, and its luxury brand Audi slipped seven places to 14th.Buick, the only GM brand to finish around the middle of the pack, fell five spots to 18th. Chevrolet ranked 25th, with some of its highest-volume models -- the Chevy Colorado mid-size pickup and Silverado full-size truck -- scoring poorly.Chevy’s Silverado rated 20 on a 100-point scale, matching Ford’s F-150 and narrowly beating the Ram pickup’s 18. The overall Ford brand ranking was unchanged from a year ago, at 16th.GM’s is having trouble with the drive system and in-vehicle electronics on the new Chevy Silverado and GMC Sierra pickups. That’s problematic especially since the new trucks underwent modest changes and have disappointed Consumer Reports’ test drivers. GM probably took a conservative approach to engineering the new trucks because the previous-generation Silverado and Sierra had reliability issues, Fisher said.For GM, improvement is a must. The Silverado and Sierra are among its most profitable vehicles, and the automaker has been fending off a challenge from Fiat Chrysler’s Ram, which has gained market share at Chevy’s expense. There’s also more competition on the way: Tesla plans to show off an electric truck on Nov. 21. The pickup, which Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk has said is inspired by the sci-fi film “Blade Runner,” will try to crack Detroit’s profit center along with another electric upstart, Amazon.com Inc.-backed Rivian Automotive Inc.Asian DominationAsian brands fared best in the study. Toyota Motor Corp.’s Lexus luxury line again took top honors, its namesake brand finished third, and Japanese partner Mazda was sandwiched in between. The best vehicle in the study was the Lexus IS sedan, with a score of 99.The Genesis luxury brand from South Korea’s Hyundai Motor Co. placed fifth, and the company’s namesake line finished in sixth. Among European brands, only Porsche and Mini were in the top 10.Tesla’s Model 3 was initially recommended by Consumer Reports in 2018 because the early models fared well in terms of customer satisfaction and reliability was initially good enough. Tesla made a lot of changes to the car that year, including adding more comfortable seating and improving the suspension to soften the ride. But some tweaks brought about glitches that cost the car the group’s blessing.In the past year, Tesla has fixed many of those problems, and its two sedans have risen in the rankings. Fisher spoke with Musk after the Model 3 lost its recommendation last year and said the CEO was eager to hear what owners were complaining about.“He wanted the feedback,” Fisher said. “He wants to build the best cars in the world.”To contact the reporter on this story: David Welch in Southfield at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Craig Trudell at firstname.lastname@example.org, Kevin Miller, Keith NaughtonFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg Opinion) -- Startups and tech companies such as Uber, Airbnb, Gojek, Bird and Compass operate in many cities and often multiple countries, and they typically have a repeatable playbook for each time they arrive in a new place.What Gojek, the food delivery and rides startup in Southeast Asia, learns about optimal pay for couriers in Jakarta can translate, at least in part, to Ho Chi Minh City. Airbnb’s experience in navigating local bureaucracies has been honed from its experience in hundreds of cities around the world.That’s not necessarily true for the people, industries and policy makers with whom these companies work. The Gojek courier in Ho Chi Minh City doesn’t necessarily know how to avoid the pitfalls his counterparts in Jakarta already encountered. A city planner in New York may not have the luxury of learning from a counterpart in Paris what taxes or guardrails were effective for Airbnb rentals in that city.The companies are armed with centralized knowledge and act consistently based on those experiences. On the other side, there is often highly fragmented knowledge and action by the contract drivers, homeowners, mom-and-pop restaurants, local real estate agents, trucking companies and governments that deal with startups trying to shake up how the real world functions.This imbalance is what I think about when I read articles like this one about hotel operators, delivery couriers and others who feel they got the short end of the stick from startups backed by SoftBank Group Corp. or its Vision Fund. Bloomberg News has also covered the continuing city-by-city or state-by-state efforts to tax or put limits on on-demand companies such as Airbnb and Uber. (Disclosure: A family member works for a labor organization that has advocated for legislation of short-term home rentals, such as those provided by Airbnb.)There are exceptions. Chain restaurants that deal with delivery startups have the advantage of identifying patterns in their dealings with the tech disruptors, as do multi-city adversaries such as hotel industry trade groups. U.S. cities that were caught off guard by on-demand ride services a few years ago learned to move more quickly when scooter-rental companies came to town. It helped that cities could force companies to comply by impounding scooters, said Brooks Rainwater, director of the Center for City Solutions at the National League of Cities.Coordinated knowledge and action isn’t easy, though. In recently published research on regulating ride-hail services, the New York University Rudin Center for Transportation found that local policy makers were so overwhelmed that it was difficult for cities to learn best practices from one another. Rainwater said that some cities were coordinating a few years ago on effective policies for on-demand ride companies. Then the companies and some lawmakers pushed to take action out of city planners’ hands in favor of statewide rules. Meera Joshi, an NYU visiting scholar and one of the authors of the Rudin Center’s report, said some cities are coordinating directly or have been inspired by others. Mexico City is taking steps that may lead to sliding, per-kilometer fees for on-demand rides similar to those of Sao Paulo, which imposed the surcharges to mitigate traffic congestion. New York and Chicago, she said, gained confidence from talking to each other about compelling ride companies to provide data that can help cities with transportation planning and other goals. The superior knowledge and power of sprawling companies isn’t unique to on-demand startups, of course. When General Motors builds a factory, Walmart opens a distribution center and Amazon pushes for a local tax break, the lawmakers, workers and business partners with whom they’re dealing probably don’t have the same experience as a company that has gone through this process many times before.The scale of the startups, however, is on a whole other level. Uber had 3.9 million contract drivers and couriers working on its system at the end of 2018, and it operates in more than 700 cities. There are more than 100,000 cities with Airbnb listings and more than 7 million listings globally. There are not 100,000 cities with a Walmart.The bigger the startups get, the more the parties they deal with will become fragmented. That is a lot of people potentially learning from scratch how to work a system the companies have mastered.A version of this column originally appeared in Bloomberg’s Fully Charged technology newsletter. You can sign up here.To contact the author of this story: Shira Ovide at email@example.comTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Daniel Niemi at firstname.lastname@example.orgThis column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the editorial board or Bloomberg LP and its owners.Shira Ovide is a Bloomberg Opinion columnist covering technology. She previously was a reporter for the Wall Street Journal.For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com/opinion©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
While 2030 has been earmarked as the breakthrough year for autonomous vehicles, several industry leaders believe self-driving cars remain little more than a pipedream
Magna International (TSX:MG)(NYSE:MGA) reduced its annual sales and net income projections on Friday and opened lower by around $3.32 -- down 4.44% as a result.
The Zacks Analyst Blog Highlights: Toyota Motor, Fiat Chrysler, General Motors, Ford, LKQ and BorgWarner
(Bloomberg) -- Lordstown Motors Corp., the electric-truck startup formed specifically to save a shuttered Ohio car factory, has acquired the highly politicized plant from General Motors Co.The acquisition that the two companies announced Thursday ends an era that began when GM opened the complex in 1966. The factory’s fate was largely sealed when the United Auto Workers union was unable to convince GM to keep it in the fold as part of a new labor contact ratified late last month.Terms of the deal aren’t being disclosed. Workhorse Group Inc., which is affiliated with Lordstown Motors but doesn’t share any ownership, soared 27% to close at $3.13 in New York trading.The plant has been a political football since GM announced a year ago that it wouldn’t allocate future product to Lordstown. The decision was an immediate liability for U.S. President Donald Trump, who a year earlier went so far as to discourage rally-goers from selling their homes because of all the jobs he would bring back to the area. Democrats seized on the development as a symbol of unfulfilled promises made to voters in a key battleground state.Trump was so eager to endorse GM’s discussions to sell the Lordstown plant that he preempted the announcement of the talks in May by the largest U.S. automaker and Workhorse. But both companies are on shaky financial footing, with Workhorse totaling just $6,000 of revenue during its latest quarter.With the plant acquisition out of the way, Steve Burns, who used to lead Workhorse and is now chief executive officer of Lordstown Motors, is turning his attention to phase two: seeking cash to convert the Lordstown plant from making gasoline-burning Chevrolet Cruze sedans to plug-in pickups.“We are going to be fundraising for a while,” Burns said in a phone interview. “We have to stand up an auto company.”Debut ModelLordstown Motors is calling its debut model Endurance and targeting fleet buyers who make up a big chunk of the truck market.Workhorse Group is meanwhile among the bidders for a lucrative contract to make plug-in mail trucks for the U.S. Postal Service. The two companies share intellectual property related to electric-drive systems, Burns said.If Workhorse wins the postal contract, the Lordstown plant could eventually build those vehicles, but it isn’t guaranteed, he said. Lordstown Motors does have an agreement to transfer 6,000 existing pre-orders for Workhorse’s electric truck prototype called the W-15 to Lordstown Motors for production.If he raises the cash to get Endurance into production, Burns said he would work with the UAW and look to hire staff who didn’t accept the automaker’s offer to transfer to one of its other facilities. He wants experienced vehicle assemblers to build the trucks.“GM is committed to future investment and job growth in Ohio,” the company said in an emailed statement. “We believe LMC’s plan to launch the Endurance electric pickup has the potential to create a significant number of jobs and help the Lordstown area grow into a manufacturing hub for electrification.”Four MotorsBurns said the Endurance will be built with four motors -- one for each wheel -- to deliver all-wheel drive. It will have fewer moving parts than existing pickups, which could translate to lower repair costs for fleet operators. It also will have outlets that enable owners to run power tools off the battery.Lordstown Motors has the money to buy the plant and work on the vehicle, but Burns will need more to continue development, conduct crash and safety testing, get the truck approved for sale and retool the factory.The UAW opposed the Lordstown plant sale because of the risk involved. In addition to being wary of tying its fortunes to a cash-strapped startup, future demand for electric vehicles is uncertain. Several electric-vehicle upstarts have failed, including Fisker Automotive Inc., which was acquired by a Chinese auto-parts conglomerate after bankruptcy. Even Tesla Inc. struggles to make consistent profit.Burns said he’s hired a team of veterans from GM, Ford Motor Co. and Fisker’s successor company, Karma Automotive LLC. His chief production officer, Rick Schmidt, was a manufacturing director at Tesla for 3 1/2 years.“We’ve got a solid team and I’m confident in our fundraising efforts,” he said.(Updates share move in third paragraph.)\--With assistance from Kevin Miller.To contact the reporter on this story: David Welch in Southfield at email@example.comTo contact the editors responsible for this story: Craig Trudell at firstname.lastname@example.org, Chester DawsonFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
BERLIN/WASHINGTON, Nov 7 (Reuters) - Outgoing European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker does not believe U.S. President Donald Trump will impose tariffs on imported European cars next week, he told Germany's Sueddeutsche Zeitung. "Trump is going to make some criticism, but there won't be any auto tariffs," Juncker told the Sueddeutsche in pre-released extracts of an interview to run in its Friday edition. The U.S. Commerce Department declined to comment.
While the proposed tie-up between Fiat-Chrysler (FCAU) and PSA is likely to lead to the creation of the world's fourth-largest carmaker, UAW-Ford (F) deal largely mirrors the UAW-General Motors contract.
Paula Lawlor was sifting through piles of internal General Motors Co documents in a hotel room outside of Los Angeles when she hit pay dirt: Company records showing that GM knew for years that stronger roofs on its vehicles could save lives. It was one of thousands of lawsuits GM and other automakers faced over the years that claimed that the roofs of their vehicles easily crumpled in rollovers, resulting in severe injury and death. GM invariably denied the allegations, arguing that roof strength made little difference.
(Bloomberg) -- Uber Technologies Inc.’s self-driving test car that struck and killed a pedestrian last year wasn’t programmed to recognize and react to jaywalkers, according to documents released by U.S. safety investigators.The U.S. National Transportation Safety Board on Tuesday released more than 400 pages of reports and supporting documents on the March 2018 crash that killed 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg as she walked her bicycle across a road at night in Tempe, Arizona.The documents painted a picture of safety and design lapses with tragic consequences but didn’t assign a cause for the crash. The safety board is scheduled to do that at a Nov. 19 meeting in Washington.“We deeply value the thoroughness of the NTSB’s investigation into the crash and look forward to reviewing their recommendations once issued after the NTSB’s board meeting later this month,” the company said in a statement. The company said it regrets the incident and has made critical improvements to prioritize safety.The case is being closely watched in the emerging industry of self-driving vehicles, a technology that has attracted billions of dollars in investment from companies such as General Motors Co. and Alphabet Inc. in an attempt to transform transportation.The NTSB data highlights the need for more rigorous standards on how self-driving vehicles can be tested on public roadways, Jason Levine, executive director of the Center for Auto Safety advocacy group, said in an interview. Currently, there are no federal rules and individual states have set a variety of criteria.“These are life and death consequences, not video game reset buttons for software developers,” Levine said. “I think they were playing fast and loose with people’s lives, and Elaine Hertzberg has paid the price.”The report said the car’s sensors detected Hertzberg and her bicycle but its computer failed to recognize the hazard. ”The system design did not include a consideration for jaywalking pedestrians,” it said. Herzberg was crossing the road outside of a crosswalk.The Uber vehicle’s radar sensors first observed Herzberg about 5.6 seconds prior to impact before she entered the vehicle’s lane of travel, and initially classified her as a vehicle. But the system changed its classification of her as different objects several times and failed to predict that her path would cross the lane of self-driving test SUV, according to the NTSB.Uber made extensive changes to its self-driving system after several reviews of its operation and findings by NTSB investigators. The company told the NTSB that the new software would have been able to correctly identify Herzberg and triggered controlled braking to avoid her more than 4 seconds before the original impact, the NTSB said.The safety driver behind the wheel of the car was watching a video on a mobile device and didn’t see Herzberg in time. Less than five months before the accident, Uber had cut back to a single safety driver in its test vehicles. Other companies, such as GM’s Cruise affiliate, use two.Uber vehicles operating in autonomous mode had been involved in 37 crashes prior to the fatal accident, the NTSB said. The vast majority weren’t the fault of the Uber technology. But in one case the car struck a bent post marking a bicycle lane and in another it didn’t react to a rapidly approaching vehicle and the safety driver swerved and hit a parked car, NTSB said.The safety driver involved in the accident told investigators that “sometimes the vehicle would swerve towards a bicycle.”The Uber Advanced Technologies Group unit that was testing self-driving cars on public streets in Tempe didn’t have a standalone safety division, a formal safety plan, standard operating procedures or a manager focused on preventing accidents, according to NTSB.Instead, Uber had company-wide values it promoted to its employees, such as “do the right thing,” the NTSB said. The company, in its statement, said that it had also had safety policies and procedures though not a formal safety plan.(Updates with advocate’s comments, details from report starting in sixth paragraph.)To contact the reporters on this story: Ryan Beene in Washington at email@example.com;Alan Levin in Washington at firstname.lastname@example.orgTo contact the editor responsible for this story: Jon Morgan at email@example.comFor more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.com©2019 Bloomberg L.P.
Ashton, a former General Motors Co board member, conspired with other union officials to receive "hundreds of thousands of dollars in bribes and kickbacks," charging documents alleged in U.S. District Court in Detroit. The U.S. Attorney's Office said it expected to seek the forfeiture of approximately $250,000 (£194,099) from Ashton, who left the GM board in December 2017 amid the federal investigation. GM said in a statement it was "deeply disturbed by Joe Ashton’s alleged criminal conduct.
Superior Industries (SUP) projects unit shipments in the band of 19.5-19.7 million for 2019 compared with the prior guidance of 19.5-19.9 million.