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Daily news and top headlines for manufacturing professionals

Union Efforts Could Jeopardize VW Expansion Package

January 9, 2015 9:45 am | by Andy Szal, Real Time Digital Reporter, Manufacturing.net | Articles | Comments

The ongoing fight over organizing workers at a Tennessee auto plant could jeopardize a massive incentive package aimed at expanding the facility. Gov. Bill Haslam last year announced a package totaling $300 million in tax breaks and other incentives for Volkswagen to expand its Chattanooga...

Nissan, NASA To Work Together On Self-Driving Technology

January 8, 2015 11:41 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Japanese automaker Nissan and NASA are teaming up to advance the technology behind cars that drive themselves. Yokohama-based Nissan Motor Co. and NASA's Ames Research Center at Moffett Field, California, announced Thursday a five-year research-and-development partnership for autonomous vehicle...

Honda Fined $70M For Not Reporting Death, Injury Complaints

January 8, 2015 1:45 pm | by Joan Lowy, The Associated Press | News | Comments

The Obama administration said Thursday it is fining Honda $70 million — the largest civil penalty levied against an automaker — for not reporting to regulators some 1,729 complaints that its vehicles caused deaths and injuries, and for not reporting warranty claims. The Japanese automaker...

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Toyota President Reveals Plans To Build New Overseas Plant

January 8, 2015 12:04 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Toyota Motor Corp. is looking to build a new plant abroad, company President Akio Toyoda indicated, as the world's biggest carmaker nears an end to its self-imposed three-year ban on such projects. Toyota, speaking to reporters in Nagoya, fell short of referring to a possible site. But sources close to the matter said the company...

Obama Touts Auto Recovery, AAM Says There Is 'A Long Way To Go'

January 8, 2015 9:41 am | by Andy Szal, Real Time Digital Reporter, Manufacturing.net | Articles | Comments

Although President Obama touted the recovery of the nation's auto industry near Detroit yesterday, a national manufacturing group said the country still has "a long way to go." Obama visited a Ford plant in Wayne, Michigan to kick off a three-state tour ahead of his State of the Union Address later this...

Lawmakers Raise Questions Over Incentives For VW

January 8, 2015 9:33 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Some Republican lawmakers from a southeastern Tennessee county that's home to a Volkswagen plant are raising questions about a $300 million incentive package for the German automaker because of the United Auto Workers union's role at the facility. Republican Gov. Bill Haslam last summer struck...

Cheap Oil: Who Wins And Who Loses?

January 7, 2015 1:34 pm | by Bridget Bergin, Associate Editor | Videos | Comments

Everyone has noticed the lower gas prices, but determining who stands to win and lose in the sudden drop-off is slightly more complicated. PwC’s UK Head of Oil and Gas, Alison Baker, spoke with Bloomberg’s Tom Mackenzie about the effects of lower gas prices. The average person on the street paying for gas for...

From Bullet Trains To Bag Bans: CA's Major Environmental Reforms Of 2015

January 7, 2015 12:06 pm | by Andy Szal, Real Time Digital Reporter, Manufacturing.net | Articles | Comments

California has a well-earned reputation for pacing its fellow states in environmental regulations—from the California Environmental Quality Act more than 40 years ago to a slew of new laws taking effect this year. With no end in sight following an ambitious inaugural address this week by newly re-elected...

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Mercedes Announces Decision To Move U.S. Headquarters To GA

January 7, 2015 8:27 am | by Geoff Mulvihill, Kathleen Foody, The Associated Press | News | Comments

German luxury automobile maker Mercedes-Benz said Tuesday that it's moving its U.S. headquarters from New Jersey to Atlanta, in part to be closer to its manufacturing facility in Alabama. Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal said the company accepted an incentive package...

CA To Begin Work On Nation's First Bullet Train

January 6, 2015 2:00 pm | by Scott Smith, The Associated Press | News | Comments

California's high-speed rail project reaches a milestone Tuesday as officials mark the start of work on the nation's first bullet train, which is designed to whisk travelers at 200 mph between Los Angeles and San Francisco in less than three hours. The ceremony in Fresno comes amid challenges from Central...

Hyundai Motor To Spend $74B Over 4 Years On Facilities, R&D

January 6, 2015 2:40 am | by Youkyung Lee, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Hyundai Motor Group, the world's fifth-largest automaker, said Tuesday it plans to spend 81 trillion won ($73.7 billion) over the next four years on factories, research and a new headquarters. The announcement comes after Hyundai Motor Co. last week forecast the slowest annual sales growth in...

Mercedes-Benz Debuts Concept Driverless Car At CES

January 6, 2015 1:41 am | by Anick Jesdanun, AP Technology Writer | News | Comments

The car of the future according to Mercedes-Benz is one that drives itself, has seats inside that swivel to face each other and features a computerized brain that can watch a pedestrian walk by and even offer a digital projection of a crosswalk to help the person cross the road. The carmaker...

A Car You Can Count On

January 5, 2015 3:06 pm | by Maura Falk, Associate Editor, Industrial Maintenance & Plant Operations | Videos | Comments

The automotive industry seems to be plagued by recalls, whether it was the near constant barrage of news related to the Takata airbag recalls splashed across the headlines, the GM ignition switches, or just the seemingly daily announcements of one thing or another...

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Automakers End 2014 Strongly, Pushing Some Brands To Records

January 5, 2015 9:44 am | by Tom Krisher, Dee-ann Durbin, AP Auto Writers | News | Comments

Holiday sales, cheap gas prices and low interest rates pushed U.S. auto sales to big gains in December, helping the industry close out a strong year with several brands setting sales records. Fiat Chrysler led the way, selling just over 2 million cars and trucks for a 16 percent increase over...

Volkswagen Recalls 38K Cars Due To Fire Risk

January 2, 2015 10:03 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The Volkswagen Group of America is recalling about 38,000 cars because a fuel leak in the engine may cause a fire. The automaker said no injuries or accidents have been reported. The recall covers 2014 to 2015 model years of the Volkswagen Beetle, Jetta, Passat and 2015 models of the Golf and...

GM Recalls 92K Trucks, SUVs For Ignition Lock Defect

January 2, 2015 9:59 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

General Motors is recalling 92,221 full-size trucks and SUVs for a defect in ignition lock systems that can cause safety problems in hot conditions. Thursday's recall covers certain 2011-2012-models and certain 2007-2014-models that were repaired with defective parts. The recall is for U.S., Canadian, Mexican...

Hyundai, Kia Brace For Weakest Growth In A Decade

January 2, 2015 9:53 am | by Youkyung Lee, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Hyundai Motor Co. and its affiliate Kia Motors Corp. are forecasting their weakest growth in yearly car sales in more than a decade as competition intensifies and the global economy slows. Hyundai Motor Group, the world's fifth largest automaker, said Friday the two carmakers aim to sell a combined 8.2 million vehicles this...

Tesla Upgrades Roadster Car For More Efficiency

December 29, 2014 10:33 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Tesla said improvements it is making to its older Roadster model will let the electric car travel about 400 miles on a single charge. The Palo Alto, California, company said that a new battery, new tires, and other improvements will boost the car's range 40 to 50 percent compared to the...

NJ Officials Pleading For Mercedes To Stay

December 29, 2014 9:54 am | by Geoff Mulvihill, The Associated Press | News | Comments

German luxury automobile maker Mercedes-Benz hasn't even publicly said it's considering moving its U.S. headquarters out of New Jersey, but some state officials are so concerned about the possibility they're campaigning publicly to try to keep the company and...

Airstream Trailers Can't Keep Up With Demand

December 29, 2014 9:49 am | by Mitch Stacy, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Bob Wheeler still gets the question sometimes when people find out he runs the company that builds those shiny aluminum campers: "Airstreams? They still make those?" Not only are the retro-looking "silver bullet" travel-trailers still being built by...

MI's Population Creeping Up As Autos Recover

December 26, 2014 11:35 am | by David N. Goodman, The Associated Press | News | Comments

After years of declining population, industrial Michigan finally seems to be on track toward growth again, the state's demographer says. The U.S. Census reported this month that Michigan's population rose a razor-thin 0.1 percent to 9.91 million in...

Japan's Top 3 Carmakers Cut Domestic Production In Nov

December 24, 2014 10:37 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Japan's top three carmakers Wednesday reported weaker domestic production for November, as the lingering impact of the consumption tax hike in April dented sales and their strategy to build more vehicles overseas led to reduced exports in the month. Toyota Motor Corp., the world's largest...

Airbag Maker Takata Shuffles Top Managers To Improve Response To Recall Crisis

December 24, 2014 10:27 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Takata Corp., the Japanese maker of airbags at the centre of massive recalls in the U.S. and elsewhere, apologized and said Wednesday that it was reshuffling its top executives, who plan to take pay cuts in response to the crisis. Takata's president... 

$11M In New Equipment Planned For Auto Plant

December 24, 2014 9:52 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

An auto parts company is planning to spend nearly $11 million on new equipment for a southern Indiana factory. The Seymour City Council this week approved a 10-year phase-in of property taxes for the investment by Valeo at its automobile lighting factory... 

Is There A New Life For Cuba's Classic Cars?

December 24, 2014 9:38 am | by E. Eduardo Castillo, Kristen Wyatt, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Dairo Tio cruises the streets of Havana in a gleaming black 1954 Buick with polished chrome highlights and the diesel motor from an electric plant bolted beneath the hood. When the brakes failed in his beautiful Frankenstein of a taxi cab, Tio couldn't work for 15 days as...

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