A massive vehicle recall by four Japanese automakers because of faulty airbags underscores the perils of huge global supply chains as companies increasingly rely on a handful of suppliers for common or similar parts.
Greg May Chevrolet in West, Texas, is coping with damage and devastation. Last night, a blast at a fertilizer plant a mile from the store killed several people and injured more than 100. "It's been quite devastating," said Gary Rodenbaugh, general manager of Greg May Chevrolet.
Toyota plans to invest $360 million to bring production of the Lexus ES sedan to Kentucky, making it the first model from Toyota's premium brand to be built in the United States as the carmaker pushes to localize more manufacturing.
AvtoVAZ, Russia's largest carmaker, will cut its 2013 sales and production forecasts due to the weak state of its home market, the company's CEO said. "We saw a certain decline in sales in March," Igor Komarov said.
Daimler and other global automakers will probably have to lower their forecasts after demand in Germany dropped the most in 2 1/2 years. The plunge in the German market is prompting companies to increase discounting, in turn pressuring earnings.
AutoNation said first-quarter net income rose 14 percent to $83 million, up from $73 million a year ago. With profits up in all categories of its business during the first quarter, particularly finance and insurance and parts and service, AutoNation is snapping up more dealerships.
Visteon CEO Tim Leuliette ruled out selling control of the company’s climate-control business that South Korea’s Mando has been seeking to buy. "First of all, the business isn’t for sale," Leuliette said in reference to Halla Visteon Climate Control.
Volkswagen of America has hired Maserati North America CEO Mark McNabb, a former Nissan and General Motors sales executive, as its COO. McNabb, 51, will start at Volkswagen on May 1. He will report to CEO Jonathan Browning and oversee U.S. sales as VW continues an ambitious growth strategy.
Volvo is set to report an operating loss in China for 2012 of between 2 billion to 4 billion Swedish crowns ($308 million to $615 million) as weak car sales and a costly new factory weighed on results, a Swedish daily newspaper reported on Thursday.