General Motors has weathered some tough years over the last decade, but lately the tide seems to be turning in its favor.
I visited a spark plug manufacturing facility recently.
Clearly the darling of the auto industry today is telematics.
Imagine a small, two-seat vehicle, about the size of a golf cart on andro, not full-blown steroids: bulked up but not massive.
We hear it frequently around Detroit, the sad tale of good engineers and managers who lose their faith. People who love cars and have great pride in their work, but all the same grow weary of the bean counters, the anchor draggers, the compromises, the politics, and the overwhelming bureaucracy of the auto industry. “There’s got to be a better place, a better way, for the real car guys,” they think. Well there is. Welcome to Panoz—America’s coolest car company.
The automotive supplier is taking modularity to a new level: to the roof. It has developed a mothod to combine coil-coated metal with a headliner and a polyurethane in between that not only can provide better physical properties for a roof, but which can improve assembly, as well.
Observations and opinions about the nature of Detroit in context with what's occuring right now in silicon valley from a man who has been on the ground in both locales, Dr. Christopher Meyer. As Meyer observes, "speed has never been more important." They get it in the valley. But what about Motown?
GM has an engine plant in what some might think an odd location in Eastern Europe, a place best known for paprika and inexpensive labor, but there's more to Opel Hungary than one might first expect—like the fact that it's one of the most productive engine plants in the world.
Although the U.S. is certainly a place where plenty of trends are started, some engineering trends start in Europe and make their way west. As in the case of some plastic applications under the hood.
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