Toyota just cut production for the second time this week

Toyota just cut production for the second time this week

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Toyota will produce 150,000 more cars globally next month than originally planned, BMW could make its Mexico facility a base for its electric car production operations, and Sony is finding big business in providing image sensors for the future of assistive and autonomous driving. All that and more in this Happy Friday edition of morning shift On May 27, 2022.

First gear: Toyota signal problem

The gift that keeps on giving – the ongoing global shortage of semiconductors – and China’s latest round of COVID-19 lockdowns have once again hampered Toyota’s June production targets. Three days after announcing that she would pump 100,000 cars less Next month, it returned on Friday to say it expects that target to fall by another 50,000. who – which may be It affects the company’s full-year production schedule — I don’t see how that wouldn’t happen, but predicting the future in this climate is a fool’s errand. From Reuters:

Toyota said there was a “potential” to cut its full-year production plan of 9.7 million vehicles.

“It is very difficult to estimate the current supply situation of spare parts due to the ongoing shutdown in Shanghai,” she said.

This lack of certainty on parts has been a constant refrain from automakers, both in Japan and elsewhere. Analysts said that given that China is the world’s largest auto market and a global manufacturing giant, the shutdowns there have implications for both supply and demand.

Subaru warned this month that US dealers have a record low inventory of about 5,000 vehicles remaining, while Honda Motor Corp. said it would cut production by 20% at two domestic manufacturers.

Toyota said Corolla, RAV4, Prius and 4Runner models will be among those that will be affected by the production suspension.

This, of course, is all happening at a time when automakers with particularly hot products, such as Subaru, are finding their national supply nearly exploited. It’s going to be a tough summer for anyone who buys a car, especially if it’s a model Forrester or RAV 4.

Second gear: BMW finds its home EV

BMW opened its plant in San Luis Potosi, Mexico three years ago, making the Series 2 and 3. In April, Automotive News reported that the manufacturer was seeking to Transferring some X3 production to the facilityNow, rumors have it that Mexico will become the brand’s base for building the upcoming 3 Series electric and iX3 in the coming years. From Car News:

A source familiar with BMW’s product plans said the automaker is set to begin manufacturing the next generation of its third-generation electric sedans and iX3 electric crossover starting in 2027 in San Luis Potosi, Mexico.

The source said that production of the crossover will start in the first half of 2027, followed by production of sedans in the second half of the year.

A BMW spokesman declined to comment on future production plans.

In April, Automotive News reported BMW’s plans to move some production of the X3 to Mexico.

The X3 crossover is BMW’s best-selling vehicle in the US, with the company selling 204,658 X-branded vehicles in the US last year, a 55 percent increase from five years prior. By comparison, the luxury pickup truck segment overall grew about 24 percent over that period, according to the Automotive News Research and Data Center.

BMW Group CEO Oliver Zipps said last month that production of the crossover would reach Mexico, without revealing specific plans.

“Mexico will play an important role in our entire setup,” Zipse told Automotive News. “Sometime you will see X models because the market demand is very high. That is all I can say for now.”

Auto News adds that the plant is only operating at 39 percent of its 175,000-vehicle capacity in 2021. There is certainly room for growth, and over time, it is likely that more of that space will be filled with BMW “Neue Klasse” EVs.

Third gear: China’s foreign electric vehicle makers are fading away

An interesting report from Reuters on Friday sheds light on the way Chinese electric car manufacturers have recently dominated their home markets. Foreign companies have historically done well in the region—particularly in the years before Chinese firms performed at the level of their international competitors. But those days are long gone, as some buyers themselves have pointed out. From Reuters:

For Beijing office worker Tiana Cheng, the main dilemma when she was buying a 180,000 yuan ($27,000) crossover Xping was whether she should go buy a BYD instead, or a Neo. Never thought seriously about outboards.

“If I had been buying a petrol car, I would have thought of foreign brands,” the 29-year-old said as she headed home from work. “But I wanted an EV, and other than Tesla, I’ve seen quite a few foreign brands properly applying advanced smart technology.”

China’s list of the 10 best selling electric cars reflects this perception:

No foreign brands are among the top 10 automakers in the New Energy Vehicle (NEV) sector this year, with the notable exception of leading electric vehicle company Tesla in third place, according to data from the China Passenger Car Association.

All the rest are Chinese brands, from BYD and Wuling to Chery and Xpeng. China’s leader, BYD, sold about 390,000 electric cars in the country this year, more than three times what global leader Tesla sold there. The highest-ranking traditional automaker is Volkswagen’s venture with the FAW Group, in 15th place for electric vehicle sales.

Cheng said the Marquis is overseas, whether it’s a Buick Villette 7 or a Volkswagen identity. A series, it failed to provide what it was looking for: an EV capable of giving it the “comfort” of having a smartphone-like experience in its car.

“Foreign brands are too far from my life and my lifestyle,” said Cheng, whose digital assistant handles communications with apps like Alipay and Taobao, and “do everything for me from opening windows to playing music,” while her car software provides more than air updates. .

I’m pretty confident that every week regional CEOs at GM and Volkswagen wake up in cold sweat dreaming of the phrase “foreign brands are too far from me and my way of life”. Deep software integration promoted by EV Group in China until far away vital to this market. Imagine if no one bought an EV in the US unless it supported Apple Pay.

Fourth gear: Sony discovers a new business

We haven’t heard from a Sony prototype and crossover in a while, but financial times Reports indicate that the company’s efforts to brand itself as an ADAS supplier are paying off:

Sony expects to supply 15 of the world’s 20 largest automakers with imaging sensors by 2025, underlining the company’s ambitions in electric and autonomous vehicles as it tries to diversify beyond mobile phones.

The Japanese conglomerate announced its intention to accelerate its drive into the auto industry in 2020 when it unveiled an electric car prototype called the Vision-S. This year, it launched its electric vehicle division and announced a joint venture with automaker Honda.

Sony said it is now aiming to provide the necessary sensors for electric and self-driving vehicles, as it diversifies beyond making parts for smartphone cameras for Apple, Google and Samsung.

Teruchi Shimizu, head of Sony’s imaging and sensing business, said at a two-day investor event that ended Friday.

He added that the 20 automakers will manufacture about 80 percent of the cars sold globally within three years. Sony plans to spend about 900 billion yen ($7 billion) developing imaging sensors in 2021-23, nearly three times what it spent between 2015 and 2017.

If you know a little about Sony and the broader technology industry, you probably know that one of the company’s top money makers supplies image sensors to smartphones and other portable electronic devices. Whether you own an iPhone, Pixel, or Galaxy, it’s likely that your device’s camera sensors are It comes from Sony or Samsung. Sony cleverly applies this knowledge to semi-autonomous driving, and has a promising future because of it.

5th Gear: Back to BMW

Another thing in BMW news: It has struck an agreement with current battery company CATL to supply its future electric cars, from 2025 onwards, with cylindrical cells. again, from Reuters:

Chinese battery giant CATL said Friday it will start supplying cylindrical cells to BMW from 2025 to power its new electric car series.

Cattell said the battery maker had signed an agreement with BMW under which it was nominated as a supplier of cylindrical cells to the German carmaker.

BMW did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

CATL has been supplying BMW for a decade. Reuters previously reported that the Chinese company is studying the locations of potential battery factories in the United States to supply automakers including BMW, with the aim of starting production in 2026.

There are some different opinions about the optimal style and arrangement of cells from the world’s best automakers. a green car reports An article from last October explained that many well-established brands tended to favor bag-style cells, while only a few—like Lucid—embraced cylindrical cells.

“Tesla was the king of the range and we’re going to take this mantle by its appearance,” he said. [Lucid CEO Peter] Rawlinson said. “But it just amazes me that other companies don’t work cylindrically.”

Not everyone agrees. At EV Day last March, GM executives confirmed that while they considered cylindrical cells, oversized bag cells were their obvious choice. According to battery pack engineer Andy Ory, the bag cell approach provides “the fewest possible number of larger cells.” This means GM can cut the wires and connectors inside the units, and each of those giant 100-Ah cells contains the same amount of power as a typical 20 cylindrical cells.

GM is not the only one. Hyundai has also switched to favoring bag-shaped cells in its E-GMP platform, which Ford plans to use in its F-150 Lightning electric pickup truck. There is some momentum in a shift in the other direction, with BMW announcing a focus on prismatic cells, and signs of shifting to standardized prismatic cells for the VW range.

Those preferences will likely change as we move into the second half of the decade, once every automaker has its own dedicated platform for electric vehicles over the next 10 years. At the same time, it doesn’t surprise me that older brands went the same way on the issue of battery technology, while startups were more inclined to experiment.

The opposite: I’m more than a galloping guy

2022-05-27 14:32:00

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