On the cars he owns: "A bunch a cars, ranging from the Jeep to a Bentley." What surprised him the most about the auto industry: "The complexity, the fact that a part that serves the identical purpose in different vehicles produced by the same OEM will have a different configuration.
The other thing we did not fully appreciate was the long lead time to get a new design through the system. There are very few industries where you are planning four or five years ahead." What worries him most: "That the parts industry has had an enormous set of problems in a 17-million-car year. What happens if we hit a 15-million-car year, which is not out of the question to me. You will have problems not matched before." On his reception by the Big 3: "I don't think they are at all antithetical to our objectives. I'm not saying that any of them will give us a cushy deal. That is not the nature of the industry. But many people in the OEM industry recognize that the auto parts model is broken. And it doesn't really work for them either."
You may e-mail Robert Sherefkin at [email protected]