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Posts Tagged ‘auto alliance’

Renault and Nissan Tighten Embrace to Boost Earnings

Partners target $6 billion in new synergies.

by on Mar.04, 2016

Renault-Nissan Alliance CEO Carlos Ghosn sees more opportunities for savings.

Already one of the most successful partnerships in automotive history, the Renault-Nissan Alliance is targeting an additional $6 billion in new “synergies” by 2018, the two carmakers announced Friday.

The plan comes as something of a victory lap for Carlos Ghosn, the Brazilian-born executive who serves as CEO of the two companies. Late last year, he beat back a push by the French government, a major investor in Renault, which threatened to fracture the Euro-Asian alliance.

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“The auto industry is rapidly evolving, requiring Renault and Nissan to leverage the Alliance as a pragmatic business tool,” said Ghosn in a prepared statement.


Toyota Teaming up With Ford on Smartphone AppLink Technology

Partners looking to develop open-source version of Ford AppLink.

by on Jun.03, 2015

Ford integrates AppLink into most new models, and an updated version will power Sync 3.

In another sign of the strange bedfellow relationships reshaping the auto industry, Toyota is teaming up with Ford to develop an open-source version of Ford’s AppLink connected-car infotainment system.

The concept, which will be central to the completely updated Sync 3 infotainment system Ford will launch over the summer, is similar to the Apple CarPlay and Android Auto systems many automakers are planning to adapt. Toyota would apparently use it to update or replace its own Entune infotainment technology.

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Where automakers long took price in doing their own R&D, they are increasingly turning either to outside suppliers or, in a growing number of instances, partnering with each other.


Forget Distracted Driving; Study Cites Turn Signal Neglect as Real Danger

“Epidemic” may be cause of 2 million accidents annually.

by on May.01, 2012

Blink, blink. A new study suggests failure to properly use turn signals causes 2 million accidents annually.

Forget distracted driving.  A new study says there’s a far more serious problem that’s responsible for as many as 2 million accidents annually.

When’s the last time you used your own turn signals?  According to research by the Society of Automotive Engineers, drivers either neglect to use their signals when changing lanes – or fail to turn the signals off – 48% of the time.  And when making a turn the failure rate is around 25%.  That works out to 2 billion times a day drivers fail to use signals, or 750 billion times annually.


A lack of courtesy? Laziness?  Poor training?  Whatever the reason, the SAE study says the problem results in about 2 million roadway collisions annually.  That’s more than twice the 950,000 accidents linked to distracted driving, which has become one of the central topics of the U.S. Department of Transportation under Sec. Ray LaHood.


Could Fiat/Chrysler Make a Bid for Peugeot?

Marchionne hints he may try to outbid GM for French alliance.

by on Feb.29, 2012

Might Fiat/Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne be the spoiler in talks between GM and Peugeot?

Might the Fiat/Chrysler alliance try to outbid General Motors to set up a global automotive powerhouse with French automaker PSA Peugeot-Citroen?

It’s clear that Fiat/Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne sees that as a potentially powerful alternative to letting PSA tie up with General Motors.  As reported this week, GM is apparently seeking a 7% stake in the French company, while the two partners would set up a series of joint ventures to develop new products and powertrains.

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But according to a report by Dan Howes, of the Detroit News, Marchionne is ready to step in as the spoiler.  He previously considered an alliance with Peugeot, having approached the French maker with the idea of an alliance during the Geneva Motor Show three years ago, even as Fiat was considering the option of buying GM’s struggling Opel division – then on the auction block.


How to Make Small Cars Profitable

Can Fiesta do what Falcon didn't - turn a profit?

by on Dec.22, 2009

Like its cross-town rivals, Ford has struggled to make money on small cars but is betting it will with the 2011 Ford Fiesta, on sale next year.

For many decades, Detroit has been trying to figure out how to make money on a small car in the U. S.   Even the definition of what a “small car” is has changed over the years.  In 1959, when the Falcon, Corvair and Valiant “compacts” were introduced to stem the flow from Europe, they were known as “small cars.” 

Today, the definition of a small car is still fuzzy both within and without the auto industry. 

We’d all agree the smart fortwo and the Fiat 500 are small cars.  Ford and some others label these “A” cars.  I’ve never seen a formal definition, but their overall lengths (OAL) are 106 and 117 inches, respectively. 

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The most successful of the Big Three’s 1960 “small cars,” the 109.5-inch wheelbase Falcon, for comparison, had 181″  OAL, while the VW Beetle it was designed to drive from the shores was 160″ OAL.  George Romney’s 100-inch wheelbase Rambler American was 178″ OAL.