Tag: Daimler Chrysler

Introducing: Chinese Car Designers

The words Chinese car designer for too long have been synonymous with Xerox machines, for a while it seemed the Chinese manufacturers skipped the design and Ramp;D stages and went straight to the nearest foreign auto manufacturers dealership to buy a best selling model and then put it into production themselves under their own brand, see the Chery QQ, Laibao SUV, and other famous cloned cars. However in the past few years Chinese car companies, as well as international car companies, have been plucking the brightest Chinese designers from within China and elsewhere and cultivating their talents to a new level. Chinese designers have had a hand in some of the more popular cars on the roads in the past few years, take for example the Buick Lacrosse a big seller for GM in North America and China but it was designed by a Chinese hand.

Ken Ma

Ken Ma recently jumped ship from SAIC to Changan, but recently jumped ship from Changan for reasons currently unknown. Mr. Ma was head of design at SAIC. When at Changan he was assistant to the Chairman of the group and also a vice leader of the research and design center. Although Changan is a Chongqing based company Ken Ma went out of his way to develop a Beijing design studio some 800 miles away from Chongqing, but as Beijing is the cultural and design capital of China it seemed like the best place to set up a design center.

Ken graduated from the Central Academy of Arts in 1990 and soon went overseas to continue his studies at Ohio State where he studied car design again. In 2000 he became the head of GMs Asia Pacific Design center and oversaw the development of the last generation Buick Lacrosse. By 2007 SAIC had pinched him over to be their own design director, he worked on concept models such as the Roewe N1, Roewe 350, and MG5 final production model and also the Roewe W5, 750 and 550 facelift models, in addition to those he also worked on the World Expo models such as the Leaf.

In 2011 Ken went over to Changan where he strengthened their core Chinese development team and gave us a strong reason to believe that Changans future models will be world class cars.  Why he left Changan still remains a mystery.

Wulin Gao Wa

Wulin is not just a pretty face, she has been at the forefront of product and auto design for a few years now, she recently took over the top seat at GM Chinas Advanced Design Studio where she will be leading research into the habits and likes of Chinese drivers to further localize GMs products for the Chinese market.

Wulin graduated from the same university as Ken Ma, The Central Academy of Fine Arts, in 2000 after graduating she went onto Germanys Pforzheim University where she gained a masters degree in Traffic Design and worked part time at the then Daimler-Chrysler, by 2003 she had already moved onto Mercedes HQ in as the first Chinese female designer within the group.

In 2006 she returned to car design after taking a short break and also lectured at her old university on car design, in September 2011 she landed the top design job at GM China.

Peter Gong

Mr. Gong is not to be confused with China Car Timess own Mr. Gong, although the two are equally dashing in appearance. Peter Gong is currently heading up PSAs Asia Design Center, a much needed entity for the French company if they are ever going to have serious sales in the Chinese market. Peter graduated from Tsinghua Universitys School of Industrial Design, later he went onto VWs design center in Germany, and then BMWs, as with Ms. Gao Wa Peter studied at Pforzheim University in Germany and later went on to work at PSAs design center in France. When talking about Chinese designers and the situation in China, Peter was quoted as saying: The nationality of a car designer is not the problem, the problem in China is that there is not a strong development for designers to further themselves. Manufacturers dont understand local designers, and dont have much confidence in their abilities, which leads to local designers having poor or little experience and thus creates a situation which is deadly towards a car designers career.

For China, Peter has had his hands busy with designing the Peugeot 508 sedan which is one of the better looking sedans on the market currently and he also oversaw the design of the new SXC concept car which unveiled at 2011s Shanghai Auto Show.

Zhang Fan:

The new A-Class is a Chinese car. Who would have thought it? The man behind the design is none other than Zhang Fan, a Sichuan boy born and raised. Zhangs bio is a simple one compared to the above, after graduating he was hired by Mercedes Germany and worked there for 8 years, slowly being promoted from a simple designer to a senior member of the modeling team. Whilst at MB Zhang Fan developed the show stopping Mercedes A-Class concept car which was aired at the Shanghai Auto Show in 2011

After 8 years of working at Mercedes Benz, Zhang Fan took up his new position at Guangzhou Auto where he will be assisting with the state owned companys new brand: Trumpchi. Whilst the name is hardly inviting the products have so far been well designed and well thought out, Guangzhou Auto bought an older Alfa Romeo platform from Fiat which they have put to good use within the Trumpchi brand and is now ready to sprout an SUV variant. One of Zhang Fans first concepts at GAC was the E-Linker electric concept car.

Cao Min

Cao Min is probably one of the more famous Chinese car designers, you just dont know him. Cao Min developed the Buick Rivera Concept car which went onto become the current generation Buick Lacrosse. When coming up with the Riviera concept car Cao Min had a big plate on his hands, the first generation Riviera was a truly beautiful car but came worse with age, the eighth generation model was a showcase of GMs design malaise over the past twenty years. Cao Mins Riviera concept was unveiled in 2007 at the Shanghai Auto Show and gave GM fans the world over a glimpse of what the company could do, the Lacrosse was launched in late 2009 as a 2010 model in a post bankruptcy GM, the Lacrosse went onto become a major seller for GM in China and the USA.

Cao Min may look overly youthful but his resume indicates that he graduated from Shanghai Jiao Tong Universitys School of Industrial Design  in 1995, in 1998 he was hired by GM Asia Pacific Technical Center as one of the first group of local designers at the center.Whilst at GM Cao Min had a hand in the design and development of the last generation Lacrosse and the Cadillac SLS (STS elsewhere in the world), which was the first time that a Chinese designer had been given the chance to develop a facelift for an international model.

Shao Jing Feng

As with Cao Min, Shao Jing Feng is one of the more low key Chinese designers, although the majority of readers will know his works.In 1999 Shao graduated from Jilin Universitys school of automotive design, shortly after he entered Shanghai-VWs design center where he worked on models of new cars, from 2004 onwards he became the chief designer at the center and was responsible for all of SH-VWs car designs, including locally made models such as the VW-Lavida, Neeza and also breathed on the VW Tiguan for the Chinese market.

Part Two will come tomorrow.

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NewTube or Old Model?

[Editors Note: When YouTube went live with its redesign in early December, it was the online video industry equivalent to the launch of a new iPhone. In other words, a very big deal. The following guest post was written by Doug Scott, President of OgilvyEntertainment, who shares his thoughts on how design changes to a site that delivers 88.2 billion videos a month will or wont affect the online video industry. You can follow him on Twitter @DougScottOgilvy.]

Many people have recently asked me what I think of the YouTube redesign and if this will change the online video industry. Well, I have to say that although I find the design easy to use and intuitive, I am not sure that this is going to have much impact on the industry (it should however have a positive impact on YouTubes ad inventory and Googles stock price).

We are at a very interesting point in the history of video consumption. If you look at it through a programmer’s lens, there is an over-supply of content with a limited amount of time that we have to consume it. If you look at it from a consumer’s perspective, we are able to view content on a multitude of screens, when and how we want to but, for the most part, programmers are still offering us a linear viewing experience. And lastly, for the brand, there is the ability to not only target one’s audience but also tailor the message. But neither of those promises have been truly delivered, at least not to the extent that the brand is getting greater efficiency from their media, leading to an an increase in sales/leads.

In my point of view, the big opportunity for YouTube and other content distributors is to use technology as an enabler, to address the needs of all three parties involved in the entertainment transaction. If done properly, consumers will receive a richer, more meaningful experience, being delivered when, how and where they want it, brands will get a decicated, engaged audience, and distributors will be able to capture valuable data, which in the digital economy is the new currency.

Doug Scott is the President of OgilvyEntertainment, where he has, since June 2006, been developing and producing brand funded entertainment for clients, including The Business of Innovation for IBM, Digital Cribs for Cisco, The Invested Life for TD Ameritrade, and an animated series for Capri Sun. Before Ogilvy, Doug was co-founder of MATTER, where he developed and produced high visibility integrated marketing programs including Diddy Runs the City for Sean Combs, the Lohas Conference for Ford Motor Company and Blender Sessions concert series. Prior to MATTER, Doug was Executive Vice President, Marketing and Branded Entertainment Creative Director at Hypnotic where he developed the Chrysler Million Dollar Film Festival for Daimler Chrysler as well as programs for Reebok, Nintendo and Toyota. 

8-Bit YouTube Logo by Graham Smith.

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Viva la revolución

Mercedes Benz expropriated Che Guevara iconography last Tuesday to sell cars at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. What happened in Vegas didnt stay in Vegas.

Outraged Cuban-Americans demanded an apology. They buy cars, too, so Daimler-Chrysler obliged. The manufacturer contritely explained that the image of the Communist guerrilla with the Mercedes insignia superimposed over the star on his beret was intended to convey the revolution in automobility enabled by new technologies.

Can we forgive the Cubans for remembering that Ches word was his deed when he said that he wished to transform each Communist into an effective, violent, selective, and cold-blooded killing machine through hatred? Perhaps they overlooked his connection to gas-propelled wheeled contraptions and the latest in applied science that Mercedes noticed.

Mercedes certainly isnt the first corporation to embrace Communist symbols. Show your love for the former USSR during training time in this Adidas Marx A-Flex Russia cap, the German sneaker company petitioned consumers in hawking a hat featuring an oversized hammer and sickle. North Face recently sold CCCP track jackets. Theres even a Hammer and Sickle Vodka that retails at $26.99 for a fifth.

There is something offensive going on here. But to whom?

For anyone who lived through Communism, or is even vaguely aware of its record of murder and oppression, using Che Guevara in a marketing campaign is terribly repugnant. Was John Wayne Gacys likeness unavailable?

Communism executed people for wearing glasses in Cambodia; set fire to voting booths in Peru; forced people to eat their own excrement in Romania; put dwarves in concentration camps in North Korea; and sent strikers to the bottom of the Volga River with stones tied round their necks in Russia. But in America, Communism is a cute marketing symbol.

And thats the rub. Oh-so-serious ideologues enjoy neither being made sport of nor being exposed as frauds. The irony here is that Mercedes didnt transform Che Guevara into a product pitchman. He was always that. His admonition to create two, three, many Vietnams was as much a marketing slogan as anything else and the ubiquitous portrait of his determined visage is something out of the iconography of the (Marxist) saints. If Mercedes distorts the historical Che, they do so in a way that enables a candid glimpse of the real man.

Che Guevara was always more style than substance. His appearance in a corporate advert isnt anything revolutionary. Before Mercedes used him to sell cars, Castro used him to sell Marxism. For people to whom politics is all about the pose, Guevaras stoically heroic pose under that beret has proven a powerful commercial that seduced them into purchasing the product.

If that helped them fall for Communism in the sixties, maybe it will make them fall for a Mercedes now. Thats how trendy people roll.

Che is proof that bad people enjoy good publicity. They call it the glamour of evil in church. An overseer of firing squads who ultimately experienced what he meted out, Che is a lot like the ideology that he peddled. For both, evil deeds strangely begat good press. Communism left 100 million corpses in its wake yet Westerners find a campy appeal in the products associated with it.

Lenin prophesied, The capitalists will sell us the rope with which we will hang them. But he was a false prophet. What really happened is that Communists now sell us automobiles. Some overfed capitalist in on the joke laughs himself silly.

On the day of his death, Guevara lectured a Bolivian teacher that it was anti-pedagogical to expect poor students to learn in her ramshackle schoolhouse while government officials drive Mercedes. He added, Thats what we are fighting against. Hes now fighting for Mercedes.

Che may be rolling in his grave. But its only because Mercedes Benz spits on it.

Viva la revolucioacute;n capitalista.

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Fiat Ducato Commercial Van Coming Here Under Ram Badge

After its split from Daimler, Chrysler stopped selling the successful and popular Sprinter commercial van. Fiat, however, is coming to the rescue with the Ducato, its own commercial van currently on sale in Europe.

According to Automotive News, the Chrysler Group will  soon sell a commercial van in North America based on the Fiat Ducato under the Ram brand. The Ducato shares its front-drive platform with  the Peugeot Boxer, both of which are currently sold in Europe.

“It’s designed perfectly to try and deal with the market segment here  in the United States, so we think it will grow,” said Sergio  Marchionne, CEO of the Chrysler Group.

Marchionne was on hand at the 2012 Detroit Auto Show where he said  his company would expand its plant in Saltillo, Mexico to build the  Ram-branded Ducato in time for a 2013 sale date. No other details have  been provided, but we expect the Ducato to be offered in a number of  configurations. The automaker will likely make minor cosmetic changes to  give the Ram a more distinctive look for the North American market.

Once it arrives, it will do battle with a number of established  commercial van offerings such as the upcoming Ford Transit and the Sprinter, which is now sold under the Mercedes-Benz banner. Chrysler currently sells a commercial version of the Dodge Grand Caravan called the Ram C/V, though it is smaller than the Ducato.

The Chrysler Group has already announced plans to bring over the Fiat Doblo, which is similar in size to the Ford Transit. Like the Ducato, the  Doblo will be sold here as a Ram. No official word on when the Doblo  will reach our shores.

Source: Automotive News (Subscription required)

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BorgWarner Presents Championship Driver’s and Team Owner’s Trophies at 2012 …

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Jan. 12, 2012 — /PRNewswire/ — The late Dan Wheldons 2011 victory at the Indianapolis 500 marked the 100th anniversary of the Greatest Race in History. For the second time, his sterling silver image earned a coveted place on the Borg-Warner Trophy#x2122;. A duplicate image adorns the BorgWarner Championship Drivers Trophy#x2122; presented to his wife, Susie Wheldon, as a personal keepsake by BorgWarner Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Timothy M. Manganello during the 2012 Automotive News World Congress held in Detroit, Michigan, on January 11. Team owners Bryan Herta and Steve Newey received the prestigious BorgWarner Championship Team Owners Trophy#x2122;, a symbol of teamwork and excellence in racing.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120112/DE34870#xA0;)

After finishing second in 2009 and 2010, Dan would have been thrilled to accept his second Baby Borg for his Indianapolis 500 victory in 2011. Recalling his lively spirit, we celebrate and commemorate his triumphs this evening, said Manganello. BorgWarner is very proud to be part of a century-long tradition of achievement, competitive performance and technology leadership at the Indianapolis 500. We congratulate Dan Wheldon and Bryan Herta Autosport for their 2011 Indianapolis 500 victory and are pleased to present these prestigious symbols of their achievement.

The BorgWarner Championship Drivers Trophy#x2122;

A one-of-a-kind replica of the Borg-Warner Trophy, the BorgWarner Championship Drivers Trophy is awarded each year to the winner of the Indianapolis 500. Known as the Baby Borg in the automotive racing world, the sterling silver trophy is 14 inches high, weighs five pounds and rests on a beveled black marble base. The base is inscribed with the winners name and year of victory, and includes a hand-crafted, three-dimensional sterling silver image of the winner, a duplicate of the image affixed to the full-sized trophy. BorgWarner established the drivers trophy in 1988 to provide the driver with a personal keepsake of the Speedway victory.

The BorgWarner Championship Team Owners Trophy#x2122;

In 1998, the company also established the BorgWarner Championship Team Owners Trophy as a companion to the drivers trophy. The team owners trophy is presented to the owner of the winning Indianapolis 500 racing ream and recognizes the significance of the team owners role in the Indy Racing League. Like the drivers trophy, the team owners trophy is a replica of the Borg-Warner Trophy but features a band of art deco racing cars accented in gold to symbolize the importance of teamwork in the automotive business.

The Borg-Warner Trophy#x2122;

Featuring the image of every Indianapolis 500 winner sculpted in sterling silver, the Borg-Warner Trophy is a tribute to 100 years of racing history. Since the trophy stands over five feet tall and weighs more than 100 lbs., it remains on display at the Indianapolis 500 Museum. However, it made a special appearance during the presentation of the drivers and owners trophies at the World Congress.

For more information, visit www.borgwarner.com, and choose The Indianapolis 500 from the Company pull-down menu at the top of the home page. The Borg-Warner Trophy, BorgWarner Championship Drivers Trophy, and BorgWarner Championship Team Owners Trophy are trademarks of BorgWarner Inc.

About BorgWarner

Auburn Hills, Michigan-based BorgWarner Inc. (NYSE: BWA) is a technology leader in highly engineered components and systems for powertrain applications worldwide. Operating manufacturing and technical facilities in 59 locations in 19 countries, the company develops products to improve fuel economy, reduce emissions and enhance performance. Customers include VW/Audi, Ford, Toyota, Renault/Nissan, General Motors, Hyundai/Kia, Daimler, Chrysler, Fiat, BMW, Honda, John Deere, PSA, and MAN. For more information, please visit www.borgwarner.com.

#xA0;

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SOURCE BorgWarner Inc.

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Mercedes Benz’s Zetsche Heralds Tipping Point of Post Oil Era

LAS VEGAS – Daimler AG chairman Dieter Zetsche proclaimed a new
era of the convergence of transportation and communication during his keynote
at this weeks International CES.

Likely remembered for his Doctor Z
commercials during the heyday of Daimler Chrysler merger, Zetsche is largely
credited with bringing core changes to Mercedes-Benz. He also reaffirmed his
vision while noting how technology and transportation have often progressed
together.

In the 19th century it was print media and steam
power. In 20th century it was broadcasting and oil, said Zetsche.
Now in the 21st century weve reached a tipping point again with
electric mobility marking the beginning of the post-oil era.

While joined on stage with a new Mercedes SL sedan, Zetsche
proclaimed that the car has been as much an accessory to the consumer as
electronics are an accessory to the car, but stressed that the role of the
automobile will change, as billions of people begin to embrace the automobile –
as the abundance decreases and the price rises.

Oil may cost us more than just the price at the pump, said
Zetsche, noting the environmental concerns of fossil fuel.

Zetsche also proclaimed a new declaration of auto
independence, which include five key chapters as digital lifestyle extends to
digital driv- style, where the car will provide more freedom. These chapters
include freedom of time, which could bridge the gap.

The digital world has long been in a different time zone
than the automotive world, said Zetsche. Think about it – a 20-year-old car
might be a classic you love to drive, but do you know anybody who is still
using a 20-year-old mobile phone?

This convergence would include a Cloud solution that would
allow for software updates without the need to bring a car to the dealership,
while also promising what Zetsche said was freedom of speech, where cars
would get smarter – even if the drivers do not.

And this isnt just about personal automobiles, Zetsche
noted, as he spoke about the freedom of access via car-sharing programs. These
were compared to Cloud mobility, where users can utilize an app to find and
book the nearest car. Zetsche circled back to the environmental issues, noting
that the convergence of autos and technology would allow for a freedom of
energy, which would herald that post-oil era, where fuel cells could power a
cars drive train and utilize hydrogen over traditional fossil fuel. 

The fifth part of this declaration was freedom of
information, where each car could essentially become its own individual crowd-sourcing
location to share information with other connected cars.

In closing, Zetsche noted that this declaration is all part
of being better to pay our dues rather than pay someones royalties. The best
days are yet to come.

 

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Interesan a Daimler-Chrysler las unidades de enseñanza

De forma personal directivos de la empresa automotriz Daimler-Chrysler, encabezados por el director de la planta instalada en Derramadero, Sungsso Lee, su esposa Elena Lee, George Ferro y Bill Barnett, conocieron una de las unidades que operan como Plaza Comunitaria Móvil.

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BorgWarner’s R2S® Turbocharging Technology Drives First Four-Cylinder Engine …

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Jan. 17, 2012 — /PRNewswire/ –#xA0;BorgWarners award-winning regulated two-stage (R2S#xAE;) turbocharging technology boosts performance while helping improve fuel efficiency and lower emissions for the first four-cylinder engine in the history of the Mercedes S-Class. The 2.2-liter diesel S 250 CDI BlueEFFICIENCY is the first car in the luxury segment to consume less than 6 liters of fuel per 100 km.

(Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20120117/DE36400#xA0;)

BorgWarners highly efficient turbocharging technology meets the highest demands in performance, fuel economy and emissions, said Frederic Lissalde, President and General Manager, BorgWarner Turbo Systems Passenger Car Products. We are pleased to collaborate with Mercedes-Benz to set new benchmarks for powerful downsized diesel engines in the luxury segment without compromising performance.

To develop a state-of-the-art engine featuring low-end torque, responsiveness, high output and low emissions, Mercedes-Benz chose BorgWarners regulated two-stage turbocharging system for the new four-cylinder diesel engine. The compact R2S system consists of one small KP39 high-pressure exhaust gas turbocharger and one large K04 low-pressure exhaust gas turbocharger. The high-pressure turbine is first driven by the exhaust gas, revolving at up to 215,000#xA0;rpm. BorgWarner engineers integrated a bypass into the high-pressure turbine casting which allows the turbines to be controlled based on engine speed and generate optimum boost pressure over the entire engine speed range with excellent torque characteristics. The R2S turbocharging technology fulfills the requirements of state-of-the-art engine concepts, allowing maximum exhaust gas recirculation rates even under full load conditions while significantly reducing NOx emissions.

While still offering excellent dynamics, the engine provides its maximum torque from just 1,600#xA0;rpm in the S 250 CDI and achieves a fuel consumption rating of only 5.7 liters per 100 kilometers (41 mpg). This equates to CO2 emissions of 149 g/km (240 grams/mile).

About BorgWarner

Auburn Hills, Michigan-based BorgWarner Inc. (NYSE: BWA) is a technology leader in highly engineered components and systems for powertrain applications worldwide. Operating manufacturing and technical facilities in 59 locations in 19 countries, the company develops products to improve fuel economy, reduce emissions and enhance performance. Customers include VW/Audi, Ford, Toyota, Renault/Nissan, General Motors, Hyundai/Kia, Daimler, Chrysler, Fiat, BMW, Honda, John Deere, PSA, and MAN. For more information, please visit www.borgwarner.com.

SOURCE BorgWarner Inc.

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BorgWarner Turbocharging Technologies Help Ford EcoBoost® Engines Increase …

AUBURN HILLS, Mich., Jan. 5, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ —
Two BorgWarner turbochargers boost the fuel-efficient Ford 3.5-liter V6 EcoBoost direct injection engine, which powers the 2012 Ford F-150 pickup. Delivering best-in-class torque, towing capability and payload, the EcoBoost-powered F-150 has enjoyed strong sales since its North American launch in February, 2011. EcoBoost has been so successful with F-150 customers looking for maximum capability and fuel efficiency that Ford expected to sell at least 100,000 units by the end of 2011 and EcoBoost is 42 percent of the F-150’s engine mix.

BorgWarner’s turbocharging technology helps the 3.5-liter EcoBoost engine increase fuel economy up to 20 percent compared with its predecessor, achieving an EPA rating of 22 mpg on the highway. BorgWarner’s turbochargers are also in high demand for Ford’s 1.6-liter and 2.0-liter four-cylinder EcoBoost engines, the latter launching in the U.S. in the 2012 Explorer and 2012 Edge models, and in China with production of the Ford Mondeo in Changan in 2011. Ford’s global family of EcoBoost engines now includes 1.0-liter, 1.6-liter, 2.0-liter and two versions of a 3.5-liter engine (for cars and crossovers, and the F-150).

“The steady increase in Ford EcoBoost engine sales demonstrates that BorgWarner’s turbocharging technologies meet the market’s demand for improved fuel economy and outstanding performance, from small cars to light-duty vehicles,” said Frederic Lissalde, President and General Manager, BorgWarner Turbo Systems Passenger Car Products. “We are pleased to further expand our partnership with Ford, allowing customers worldwide to benefit from more power at the pedal, more miles to the gallon and lower emissions.”

During the development process for the F-150, a rigid testing protocol for the 3.5-liter V6 EcoBoost engine was conducted, replicating more than 1.6 million miles under the harshest conditions. BorgWarner’s turbocharging technologies proved their reliability even under the highest external stresses during these tests. BorgWarner’s state-of-the-art technology enables the 3.5-liter engine to deliver an impressive power output of 365 HP at 5,000 rpm. The maximum torque of 570 Nm is available over a wide dynamic range, starting at 2,500 rpm. With up to 90 percent of the peak torque available from 1,700 rpm to 5,000 rpm, the V6 EcoBoost engine delivers superior performance compared with naturally aspirated V8 engines, which typically reach peak torque at higher engine speeds and hold it for a much smaller range.

About BorgWarner

Auburn Hills, Michigan-based BorgWarner Inc.

/quotes/zigman/131196/quotes/nls/bwa BWA
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is a technology leader in highly engineered components and systems for powertrain applications worldwide. Operating manufacturing and technical facilities in 59 locations in 19 countries, the company develops products to improve fuel economy, reduce emissions and enhance performance. Customers include VW/Audi, Ford, Toyota, Renault/Nissan, General Motors, Hyundai/Kia, Daimler, Chrysler, Fiat, BMW, Honda, John Deere, PSA, and MAN. For more information, please visit
www.borgwarner.com .

BorgWarner’s turbocharging technologies boost performance and helps lower emissions for the 2012 Ford F-150 3.5-liter V6 EcoBoost engine.

Statements contained in this news release may contain forward-looking statements as contemplated by the 1995 Private Securities Litigation Reform Act that are based on management’s current outlook, expectations, estimates and projections. Words such as “anticipates,” “believes,” “continues,” “could,” “designed,” “effect,” “estimates”, “evaluates,” “expects,” “forecasts,” “goal,” “initiative,” “intends,” “outlook,” “plans,” “potential,” “project,” “pursue,” “seek,” “should,” “target,” “when,” “would,” variations of such words and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, many of which are difficult to predict and generally beyond our control, that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed, projected or implied in or by the forward-looking statements. Such risks and uncertainties include: fluctuations in domestic or foreign vehicle production, the continued use by original equipment manufacturers of outside suppliers, fluctuations in demand for vehicles containing our products, changes in general economic conditions, as well as other risks noted reports that we file with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including the Risk Factors identified in our most recently filed Annual Report on Form 10-K. We do not undertake any obligation to update or announce publicly any updates to or revision to any of the forward-looking statements.

SOURCE BorgWarner Inc.

Copyright (C) 2012 PR Newswire. All rights reserved

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Growing Competition In Automobile Industry

As Africas supposedly largest automobile market continues to open its doors to new players, more dealerships are in collaboration with their principals seeking ways to explore inherent opportunities in the industry. FLORENCE UDOH writes

At the last count, no fewer than 30 brands of automobiles are today represented by franchised dealerships in Nigeria.

And they are all jostling for patronage in Africas biggest market. The market which has also become proactive perhaps because of its peculiar nature is viewed by global automakers as the fortress of automobile market South- west of the Sahara.

Although getting precise data of new vehicle imports into the country could sometimes be a challenge, dealerships and their principals may have overcome this stunning challenge. The Nigerian automobile market, according to them, has potentials to grow exponentially and even double its size in less than ten years time.

Unverified statistics put the combined new vehicle imports to Nigeria last year at about 70,000 units from a staggering 10, 000 some eight years ago.

This figure does not however include fairly used imports (Tokunbo), as well as lsquo;grey imports (unauthorised marques) that are occasionally ferried into the country by night through porous borders. Even so, more brands are seeking to register their mark in Nigeria to have a bite of the juicy market that is growing geometrically.

One of the latest entrants is Indian owned TATA Motors that though marketed by an Indian dealer, Bhojwani Brothers, but now controlled by the owners of the brand.

Like other representatives, TATA seeks to have a bite of both the commercial/truck vehicle segment and the passenger car segment. For now TATA is desperately seeking to appoint local dealerships to help distribute its products all over Nigeria. One of the criteria for dealership, according to the company, is that the applicant must have a reputable workshop to handle the brand.

Nothing seems able yet to tame the growth potentials of the market which from all indications appear to be attracting more interest.

Until recently, Peugeot had towered above rival brands, importing approximately 200, 000 units annualy while Nissan/Datsun followed closely with about 110, 000 imports and Toyota 56, 000 units.

But the entrance of new players, especially Chinese imports, has given the market a new twist. Some of the Chinese brands represented in this market include, KIA, Chery, Jinbei, Quingoi, Geely, Foton, BYD, LandMark, GrandTiger, JAC and Chana range of automobiles among others.

The list of other major brands is similarly endless. They include Ford, Rover, GM, Chevrolet, Isuzu, Daimler Chrysler, Mercedes Benz, Volvo, BMW, Volkswagen, Chevrolet, Peugeot, Mazda, Honda, Renault, Dacia and Hyundai.

Others are, Skoda, Audi, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Toyota, Suzuki, Porsche, Tata, Maruti and Mahindra.

In the truck segment, Iveco, Fiat, International, Leyland, Mercedes Benz, Kamaz, and DAF hold sway.

Importers of motorcycles like their automobile counterparts are similarly finding solace in the local market and are exploring all opportunities to usurp the market shares of one time Nigerias foremost motorcycle assembly plant, Honda Manufacturing Nigeria.

Currently numbering over 30 variants, statistics put the number of motorcycles import to Nigeria at almost 600,000 units annually.

Yan Jiang, executive president, Geely International, captured the growth potential better when he noted at a forum in Lagos that the Nigerian market was so significant to Geely International and would not hesitate to site a plant in the country.

Hyra Motors Limited, representatives of Geely in Nigeria has since it was appointed Geely dealership in Nigeria made striking effort to popularise the brand.

Similarly, David Bakare, Chief executive, Chery Motors Limited, marketers of Chinese engineered Chery vehicles is confident that the brand would succeed in Nigeria. He said the quality of Chinese engineered vehicles compare with rival brands from Japan.

Peugeot Automobile Nigeria is though the only surviving local passenger car plant, the federal government has divested its stakes in the company. It is now managed by independent investors who are determined to raise the bar for the brand.

Meanwhile, Toyota Nigeria Limited, brand custodian of Toyota has continued to chart the way in the countrys automobile market, leading the pack with yet insurmountable sales record. The company currently imports 70 per cent of the combined new vehicle imports to Nigeria. Although the company has no clear cut marketing strategy, its renowned global identity has continued to pave the way for Toyota in the local market.

It has continued to strengthen its dealership network that are mostly situated in and around Lagos, South West Nigeria.

The Stallion Group are however has multiple franchise dealerships with interest in Audi, Volkswagen, Skoda, Porsche, Hyundai, Honda and Mahindra vehicles. The company championed car financing schemes and other marketing bonanzas that it uses to woo buyers. Stallion currently remains the only single marketer with the largest numbers of automobile franchise in Nigeria.

The endorsement of Alliance Autos Limited dealership two years ago to market Nissan in Nigeria has also helped to transform the future of the brand.

Dana Motors Limited, marketers of Kia, has similarly been proactive in its exceptional marketing strategies that essentially seek to woo upwardly mobile executives to buy Kia vehicles. Dana has also effectively combined effective marketing mix to position Kia brand in Nigeria.

CFAO, the French conglomerate has also been springing surprises lately with the acquisition of additional franchises. Until recently, it was only visible as Peugeot marketer but today, it markets and distributes Chevrolet, Mitsubishi, Iveco, GM and Renault range of vehicles. GM Nigeria, currently the oldest vehicle plant in Nigeria, has managed to keep its plant afloat in spite of all odds. Its Isuzu Pickups are widely used by law enforcement agents and banks.

Kewalram Motors, the automobile subsidiary of the Chanrai Group is the countrys franchise holder for Mitsubishi vehicles. The company may be discreet in its marketing strategies; it is obvious that the company controls a significant share of the light truck and passenger car segments.

The return of BriscoeFord and its subsequent acquisition of the Ford franchise has added value to the fifty-year old company, which after relinquishing its stake in Toyota Nigeria almost went under. The company however still markets Toyota vehicles though with key interest in after sales.

Coscharis Motors, though markets Ford, it combines the responsibility with the BMW and Rover franchises which it has hyped.

Being one of the most visible trucks on Nigerian roads, Van Vliet Nigeria Limited, marketers of DAF, Dutch engineered brand of trucks had until recently held sway in the truck segment, but encumbered by challenges.

The American engineered International, makers of International trucks is similarly making inroads into Nigerian truck market. Marketed by GZ Motors Limited, which is also distributors of Kamaz trucks has been making efforts to get more people in the haulage business to embrace International trucks.

The size and demographic structure of the countrys population put at more than 150 million people as well as the inability of local vehicle plants to meet increasing demand and the unavailability of modified mass transit system are touted for the growing presence of various automobile marques in this market.

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