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Design Passion Grows Alongside China’s Auto Industry

WUHAN, China – Automotive design in China is still in its infancy, but the country’s growing power and influence will have a major impact on future vehicles, automotive designers working in China predict.

“Asia will definitely inspire many trends,” notes Diane Kloster, director-color and trim at the Volkswagen design studio in Shanghai. Chinese tastes already are felt in the food and cosmetics, and in their cars Chinese customers have demonstrated an interest in functionality, quality and safety.

“Fabrics used inside the car have to be lighter and should have a touch of sensuality,” Kloster says during a panel discussion of automotive design at the Global Automotive Forum here. “Chinese consumers are looking for a natural quality that offers joy and freedom from anxiety.

“Color is moving lighter. It’s a new kind of luxury,” Kloster says, noting young Chinese designers are bringing with them elements of the country’s strong artistic tradition with its respect for light.

“I think there is an incredible amount of talent in China. But experience is a factor,” says James Hope, design director at local automaker Chery. “Industry’s boomed, but finding designers that have put vehicles in production is very small.”

Chinese designers are putting aside the utilitarian tradition of the past half-century and quickly catching up with current design trends in the global industry, says Hope, who works in Shanghai. The world’s largest city is emerging as the country’s center of automotive design due to its concentration of major studios companies have set up.

In 2013, the Chery TX concept SUV, designed in the automaker’s Shanghai studio, was named Concept Car of the Year for 2012 by the U.K. publication Car Design News. It was the the first time a design from a Chinese studio won the award.

Hope, who worked on exterior design for General Motors before joining Chery in 2012, believes the design of indigenous Chinese cars has improved dramatically in recent years.

“There (once) was quite a gap between Western and Chinese automakers. But if you walked through the Beijing Auto Show this year, you could see some of the Chinese brands were surpassing some of the Western brands,” he says. “I attribute it to how fast the industry is moving.”

Chinese car designs “were a joke, and they’re not anymore. Chinese automakers have made massive improvements,” Hope says. He concedes Chinese companies imported “expat” car designers to help with the transition, but adds a lot of talent now is coming out of local design schools.

Guy Burgoyne, chief director-interior design at Geely, says designers in China are following the broader trends that are reshaping the industry.

When he began his career more than 20 years ago, the job of the interior designer was “to cover the holes in the sheetmetal.” Interior design now is a critical part of any vehicle, he says.

“Cars are also part of the fashion industry. The car says something about the driver. A plastic bag or a handbag from Vuitton does the same thing, don’t they? The plastic bag for some is (the) means to an end, but for others the journey is as important as the destination.”

But there are 250 components in the interior of the car that need the designer’s touch, compared with 50 on the outside. “Let’s talk about finding the balance,” Burgoyne says.

Exterior styling still is a statement, Hope says. But at Chery, color and trim is becoming the most important element of the car’s design, notes Hope, who says his studio uses a horizontal organization chart where exterior, interior and color and trim are equal.

At the same time, Hope says, designers have to have address the rapid changes in technology that are reshaping the automobile in China and are attracting keen interest from customers.

The human-machine interface has become much more important for designers in an era of touchscreens, organic LEDs, occupant-recognition technology, touch-sensitive surfaces and augmented-reality features that bring a new dimension into the cockpit of a vehicle, he says.

Magnus Aspegren, head of BMW Design Works USA in Southern California, notes designers at the same time must convince consumers they still want to drive.

“We’re selling this incredible experience” of freedom and joy, he says. “It moves and responds to your needs and wants. As car designers, we felt that passion and joy.”

However, megacities with millions of residents run counter to the automobile’s century-old promise of greater freedom. “You don’t want to drive among 23 million people,” Aspegren says of Shanghai’s population. “Ninety percent of the drivers today are not able to feel the excitement. That’s unfortunate.”

Aspegren says the challenge of megacities likely requires a different model that includes multiple forms of transportation, including public transportation, while maintaining the pleasures that come with climbing behind the wheel of a well-executed automobile in China or anywhere else.

Article source: http://wardsauto.com/asia-pacific/design-passion-grows-alongside-china-s-auto-industry

Hyman Bros. buying three Pence Automotive dealerships – Richmond Times

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Haywood B. “Huddy” Hyman Jr. (center) and his sons Haywood Hyman III (right) and Thomas Hyman are owners of Hyman Bros. Automobiles.

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Pence Nissan Vice President Charles Wrenn (left) and Vince Arendosh walk through the showroom of the Midlothian dealership.

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“We see this as a good opportunity to grow,” says Haywood B. “Huddy” Hyman Jr., whose Hyman Bros. Automobiles will purchase Pence Automotive Group’s Nissan, Kia and Subaru franchises in Chesterfield County.



Posted: Monday, October 20, 2014 10:30 pm

Hyman Bros. buying three Pence Automotive dealerships

By GREGORY J. GILLIGAN
Richmond Times-Dispatch

Richmond Times-Dispatch

Haywood B. “Huddy” Hyman Jr. and his sons are expanding their auto empire again.

Hyman Bros. Automobiles is buying three dealerships from the Pence Automotive Group — Nissan, Kia and Subaru franchises on Midlothian Turnpike just west of Chesterfield Towne Center in Chesterfield County.

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Article source: http://www.timesdispatch.com/business/auto/hyman-bros-buying-three-pence-automotive-dealerships/article_6a7de3bb-8d1b-5cb1-a2a3-2c7ef5cb97ab.html

Auto industry forming consortium to fight hackers



 

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DETROIT — Automakers are forming a consortium to deter hackers who might try to breach a vehicle’s security system — an effort that has gotten the blessing of federal regulators.

The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers and the Association of Global Automakers are helping to coordinate the effort, said David Strickland, the former director of NHTSA who now is a consultant for Venable LLP.

Automakers want to create secure firewalls for vehicle-to-vehicle communications, and also for vehicle data links to “the cloud.”

The idea is for automakers to share information about attempted security breaches, so that any threat can be quickly neutralized.

Strickland outlined the consortium’s formation Tuesday on the sidelines of the Convergence conference, an event sponsored by the Society of Automotive Engineers.

“The goal is to make it very, very hard” for hackers to breach a vehicle’s security system, said Strickland, who is doing some consulting work for one of the participants. “Can you make it a zero risk? No, but you want to make it so hard that you can foreclose most opportunities.”

Contacted Tuesday, an AAM spokesman had no immediate comment.

Bentley Au, chief information security officer for Toyota Motor Sales USA, confirmed that a consortium is being formed and that Toyota is participating.

“It’s just getting started,” said Au, who was a panelist at the conference. “It will be similar to the security consortiums in other industries” such as aviation, the financial industry and the power grid.

It will take a year or so to create the consortium, which Strickland said would be called the Information Sharing Advisory Center, or Auto-ISAC.

You can reach David Sedgwick at dsedgwick@crain.com.

Article source: http://www.autonews.com/article/20141021/OEM11/141029957/auto-industry-forming-consortium-to-fight-hackers

MIP Graduate Uses MBA To Drive Mexico’s Automotive Industry

Sandra Valdes worked for General Electric for nearly nine years before deciding to expand her horizons and pursue a business education in an international environment.

Choosing MIP Politecnico di Milano as her only option, she successfully completed her MBA in 2012 and returned to Mexico to start working for Sensata Technologies, taking her first steps into the automotive industry.

Sandra spoke to BusinessBecause about her career at GE, the skill-set and international exposure the MBA at MIP gave her, and her career progression over the past two years.

You first studied Industrial Engineering and Administration. Why did you decide to begin an MBA program?

With some years of professional experience, it was time for an update. It was easy for me to make the decision; I knew I wanted to have international experience, [to] escalate up the professional ladder.

Doing a full-time MBA abroad was my best option, and also gave me the chance to accomplish one of my childhood dreams: live in Italy.

What made MIP stand out from other business schools?

MIP was the only school I selected and applied to. It was my first and only option.

I wanted my MBA to be a professional and personal experience. MIP proved that these are important aspects which they care about in many ways.

Do you think that the MBA degree at MIP added value to your skill-set?

Absolutely. It shaped [my skill-set] and added new ones.

I grew up as a leader and tailored my style. MIP also helped me to revive creativity, and to look for alternatives when solving problems. Working in multi-functional teams helped me to become a better listener, and to look at situations from different perspectives.

The atmosphere was perfect to learn in – an international class and a mix of professional backgrounds.

How has your career progressed since the MBA?

I switched from the healthcare to the automotive sector, which I consider a big step as it is more complex.

As an MBA graduate, I participate in activities to progress in different ways. One of them is to represent MIP in the MBA fairs in Mexico, a great opportunity to keep my network growing. Additionally, I’m mentoring Mexican college students [who are] planning to take post-graduate programs abroad.

I also joined the Brickline Group [a business consultancy founded by MIP MBAs] as an advisory board member.

What is your Six Sigma certification in and when did you get it?

It’s the certification I obtained after completing a savings project at GE. It was focused on the reduction of scrap; the waste had a financial impact and the project was to find a better way to procure the material to minimize this expense. The result was a 70% reduction of scrap which produced $50,000 in savings.

Do you think your experience leading teams helped to build your network at MIP?

Yes – GE was a great school to me, and is where I started to learn and practice networking. I remember being shy at the beginning of my career, but once you start to gain credibility, self-confidence starts to grow – as well as your connections.

I have had great mentors that have not just taught me ways or techniques to approach people, but also helped me to grow my network. This is invaluable.

How often do you catch up with your former MIP classmates?

Not as often as I’d like to but we are regularly in touch. There is always someone sending a joke through WhatsApp, [or] posting a job opening on our Facebook page. We became a great family.

A quote from one of my classmates: “Thank you, MIP admissions team, for gathering us and forming this amazing class.”

Article source: http://www.businessbecause.com/news/mba-careers/2858/mip-graduate-uses-mba-to-drive-mexico-automotive-industry

Tata AutoComp, Katcon in JV to make exhaust systems for automotive industry

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Article source: http://netindian.in/news/2014/10/21/00031028/tata-autocomp-katcon-jv-make-exhaust-systems-automotive-industry

Najib: Malaysia, Indonesia to join forces in automotive industry to make Asean …

Indonesia’s new President Joko Widodo (right) shakes hands with Malaysia’s Prime Minister Najib Razak at the presidential palace in Jakarta, October 20, 2014. ― Reuters picJAKARTA, Oct 21 ― Malaysia and Indonesia will soon join forces in the automotive industry to make the Asean car a reality, says Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

He said the project would be a dream come true as newly-appointed Indonesian President Joko Widodo, popularly known as Jokowi, has expressed interest in pursuing the idea mooted by Malaysia.

National car maker, Proton Holdings Bhd, is expected to be involved in the project.

“A feasibility study of a possible joint production of the Asean car by Malaysia and Indonesia will be undertaken and it (the idea) was welcomed by President Jokowi who wants the idea to be pursued further.

“This means Proton and Indonesia will launch the Asean car as a viable project after in-depth studies,” he told Malaysian journalists here today at the end of his two-day visit to the Indonesian capital to attend the swearing-in ceremony of President Jokowi.

The prime minister also hoped Indonesia, under the new administration, would continue to adopt an open economy via its existing policies, to further expand bilateral trade between the two countries.

“I also hope the involvement of Malaysian companies in Indonesia will remain intact.

“And, if there are new laws (to be introduced) it should not affect existing Malaysian investments,” Najib said.

The Prime Minister also hoped Malaysia and Indonesia could integrate not only people-to-people relationships but also on the political and economic front to maximise profits accruing from the cooperation.

Najib said Malaysia aspired to see the relations grow since it would assume the Asean chairmanship next year.

Jokowi got down to work today as the seventh president of Indonesia after taking his oath of office at the People’s Consultative Assembly, the highest constitutional body, to lead the country of 250 million people.

The former governor of Jakarta took over from Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono who had been the president since 2004.

Najib was accorded the honour of being the first of the foreign heads of government to arrive at the Istana Merdeka, the president’s official residence, to call on Jokowi and convey his congratulations.

The prime minister arrived in Indonesia on Sunday at the personal invitation of Jokowi, 53, to attend the historic event for Indonesia with his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor and joined 18 foreign dignitaries and nine heads of government during the ceremony. ― Bernama

Article source: http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/najib-malaysia-indonesia-to-join-forces-in-automotive-industry-to-make-asea

Kazakh gov’t backs local auto industry

Kazakh Investment and Development Ministry will render all the necessary support in bringing the key global automotive component manufacturers to the country’s market.

Deputy Minister for Investment and Development Albert Rau made the remarks in Astana at a roundtable dedicated to the development of the domestic automotive industry.

“The ministry will provide all the necessary support via the KazNexInvest to invite the world’s key automotive component manufacturers to Kazakhstan’s market,” he said.

Rau noted that today the development of the automotive industry in the country is due to that Kazakhstan has no production of automotive components and test bases.

He added that the low localization level hinders the reaching of Kazakh products to the export markets.

“Therefore, the carmakers need to pay special attention to the development of their own base of components,” the vice minister said.

Rau said the state policy in this area will be mainly focused on the support to the projects aimed at large-scale production, increasing its localization level and creation of a technical regulation infrastructure.

“Easy credits for construction of workshops and creation of infrastructure, as well as reduced rate finance leases for purchase of technological, logistic and ancillary equipments will be provided for successful realization of the projects,” the vice minister said.

The official statistics show that Kazakhstan is rapidly developing the automotive industry. To date, Kazakhstan’s automotive industry produces 22 percent of the motor vehicles sold in the country. In this case the localization of production stands at about 30 percent.

“The localization level enhancement is an ambitious purpose, but it is achievable. And the state support is a prerequisite for this,” according to Andrei Lavrentiev, the President of the Kazakhstan Automotive Business Association.

He said a separate state program clearly indicating the terms for this industry is needed to invite investors to the development of the automotive components base in Kazakhstan.

“The Kazakhstan Automotive Business Association will undertake the responsibilities in development of recommendations for the government for a further creation of a separate program regarding the automotive components production,” he said.

Article source: http://www.azernews.az/region/72111.html

How to win £1500 for your international placement in the automotive industry

A travel bursary from international industry body FISITA could cover the costs for you to gain unbeatable engineering experience.

 

Source: FISITA

Fancy working on Google’s self-driving car in California like this recent FISITA bursary winner?

Few things bolster your chance of securing a fantastic engineering job like an industry placement. But what if there was a way to really make your experience stand out from the competition while giving you the chance to spend time abroad?

The international automotive industry body FISITA is offering up to €2,000 (£1,500) to help fund up to 20 students’ living expenses while they’re on a foreign placement.

You have to organise the placement in advance yourself and get support from your university placement director, but if you can convince the FISITA judges of the difference going abroad will make to your career then the money could be yours.

Source: FISITA

A foreign placement could mean a great personal as well as professional experience.

‘In the automotive industry, a hands-on work placement is very highly valued,’ said FISITA’s education officer Tom Bell.

‘Being able to stand out from other students by showing your initiative having travelled across the world and not been limited by where your university people tends to send people, means not only are you taking on the challenge of a new workplace but a completely different culture as well.’

Source: FISITA

The bursary could give you the chance to work with some of the world’s top automotive firms.

Nicholas Mitchell, a student at Loughborough University and a former recipient of the FISITA Travel Bursary, said: ‘Any bursary received can be the difference between a year spent counting the days until you return home and the best year of your life.

‘The Travel Bursary provides an unparalleled experience working and socialising with those from a different cultural background and it enables you to finally apply the theoretical content you have learnt in real life engineering problems.’

Get to see the detailed workings of the international car industry.

To impress the judges, you’ll need to demonstrate the impact the project you’ll be carrying out on the foreign placement could have on your long-term career. ‘We need to be able to judge what skills [the student] will be learning and what implication the task has on their course as well,’ said Bell.

You’ll also have to show the placement meets the aims of FISITA, which promotes international links within the automotive industry. This means your project probably shouldn’t involve you working on your own in a foreign factory by day and partying by night.

Instead you need to demonstrate it will enable you to engage with a foreign culture and help improve your understanding of the global industry.

Source: FISITA

Improve your engineering skills and understanding of the global automotive industry.

The next deadline for applications is 31 October so if you don’t already have a placement arranged but like the idea of working abroad you should probably work towards the March submission date instead.

And if you already have a foreign placement, there are several application forms to fill out so don’t waste any time.

For more information and to apply visit the FISITA website.

For more student careers news and advice follow us:

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Article source: http://www.theengineer.co.uk/students/latest/how-to-win-1500-for-your-international-placement-in-the-automotive-industry/1019369.article

Motorists to pay more for car servicing due to new car industry code

  • Automotive industry issued its own voluntary code of conduct that stops smaller mechanics from accessing maintenance data
  • Car companies will not have to provide the same complete data to independent workshops as new-car dealerships
  • Move has angered Australian Automobile Association who claims it will reduce choice for consumers
  • Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries says a review found there would be no negative impacts for consumers  

Emily Crane for Daily Mail Australia

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Motorists may be forced to pay more to get their cars serviced after the industry’s peak body froze out small and independent mechanics in a new code of conduct.

The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries has issued its own voluntary code of conduct for car servicing that stops smaller workshops from accessing complete maintenance data and specialist tools that new-car dealership service centres are entitled to.

The move has been criticised by the Australian Automobile Association – the body for motorists – who claim it will reduce choice for consumers and force them into more expensive dealership servicing programs.

The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries has issued its own voluntary code of conduct for car servicing that stops smaller workshops from accessing complete maintenance data and specialist tools

The Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries has issued its own voluntary code of conduct for car servicing that stops smaller workshops from accessing complete maintenance data and specialist tools

‘This shows complete arrogance and contempt on behalf of the car makers,’ Andrew McKellar, chief executive of the Association told News Corp.

‘(The FCAI) is demonstrating little concern for the consumer and they are gunning for independent repairers and service providers. That’s a bad thing for consumers as it reduces choice and reduces competition.

‘The new code has so many loopholes and so many exclusions as to make it utterly worthless.  

The move has been criticised by the Australian Automobile Association - the body for motorists - who claim it will reduce choice for consumers and force them into more expensive dealership servicing programs

The move has been criticised by the Australian Automobile Association – the body for motorists – who claim it will reduce choice for consumers and force them into more expensive dealership servicing programs

‘It is a complete con. They’re putting forward the appearance they’re doing the right thing but if you dig into the detail it heavily restricts what is available (to local mechanics).’ 

Smaller mechanics have argued that as vehicles become more modern and technologically advanced, they need more access to maintenance information than stipulated in the code. 

Tony Weber, the chief executive of FCAI, issued a statement saying a 2012 Commonwealth Consumer Affairs Advisory Council (CCAAC) review found there was no evidence of disadvantage to the consumer regarding the sharing of repair information in the industry. 

Andrew McKellar, chief executive of the Australian Automobile Association, says the new code shows little concern for the consumer

Andrew McKellar, chief executive of the Australian Automobile Association, says the new code shows little concern for the consumer

The council recommended the auto industry develop a code of practice to ensure there was a process for independent mechanics to access repair information. 

‘Now, 23 months later, the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries and the Australian Automotive Dealer Association are the only organisations that appear to be making progress on this matter,’ Mr Webber said.

It is compulsory in the United States and Europe for car companies to make available maintenance data to both new car dealership service centres and independent mechanics. 

 

 


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Article source: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2799350/motorists-pay-car-servicing-automotive-industry-freezing-small-independent-mechanics.html

Mexico becoming major force in world automotive industry

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High school marching bands compete at Tacoma Dome

Article source: http://www.thenewstribune.com/2014/09/17/3384560/mexico-becoming-major-force-in.html