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Found 14 results

  1. One of the key materials used in electric car batteries is cobalt. But there are growing concerns that the supply of cobalt is getting scarce as more and more automakers begin building electric cars. A new report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance says cobalt shortages are expected to happen earlier than previously forecast. This issue possibly brings a big challenge to the rollout of electric vehicles over the next five to seven years. "The long lead time to bring on new mines and the concentration of cobalt reserves in the Democratic Republic of the Congo mean there is a real possibility of supply shocks in the early 2020s," analysts from BNEF wrote. "If capacity does not grow as planned, cobalt prices could continue to spike and there could be a major cobalt shortage. This would have serious implications on the electric vehicle market." The price of cobalt has tripled within the past two years as more automakers begin building electric vehicles. Peter Deneen, the managing director at consultancy EV-Metals Resources Group said in an email that the market price for cobalt has risen in the "prospect of supply constraints". But the price doesn't include the potential risk of political upheaval in the Democratic Republic of the Congo - accounts for more than two-thirds of mined cobalt. Concerns have automakers accelerating development of batteries that have smaller amounts of cobalt. Chinese automaker BYD is expected to introduce batteries that have a nickel-manganese-cobalt ratio of 8:1:1 by the end of this year. BMW is expected to follow in 2021 with a similar ratio. According to BNEF's report, this chemistry will account for 57 percent of EV batteries by 2030. There is also the idea of recycling batteries that could provide 100,000 metric tons of cobalt a year by 2030. But the amount would have to mean all batteries from consumer electronics are recycled. Currently, the recycling rates around between 25 to 50 percent according to the report. Source: Bloomberg via Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  2. One of the key materials used in electric car batteries is cobalt. But there are growing concerns that the supply of cobalt is getting scarce as more and more automakers begin building electric cars. A new report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance says cobalt shortages are expected to happen earlier than previously forecast. This issue possibly brings a big challenge to the rollout of electric vehicles over the next five to seven years. "The long lead time to bring on new mines and the concentration of cobalt reserves in the Democratic Republic of the Congo mean there is a real possibility of supply shocks in the early 2020s," analysts from BNEF wrote. "If capacity does not grow as planned, cobalt prices could continue to spike and there could be a major cobalt shortage. This would have serious implications on the electric vehicle market." The price of cobalt has tripled within the past two years as more automakers begin building electric vehicles. Peter Deneen, the managing director at consultancy EV-Metals Resources Group said in an email that the market price for cobalt has risen in the "prospect of supply constraints". But the price doesn't include the potential risk of political upheaval in the Democratic Republic of the Congo - accounts for more than two-thirds of mined cobalt. Concerns have automakers accelerating development of batteries that have smaller amounts of cobalt. Chinese automaker BYD is expected to introduce batteries that have a nickel-manganese-cobalt ratio of 8:1:1 by the end of this year. BMW is expected to follow in 2021 with a similar ratio. According to BNEF's report, this chemistry will account for 57 percent of EV batteries by 2030. There is also the idea of recycling batteries that could provide 100,000 metric tons of cobalt a year by 2030. But the amount would have to mean all batteries from consumer electronics are recycled. Currently, the recycling rates around between 25 to 50 percent according to the report. Source: Bloomberg via Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  3. The next-generation Mazda2 won't be arriving on our shores anytime soon. Automotive News reports that cheap gas prices and tight supply of vehicles coming from Mazda's new factory in Salamanca, Mexico has caused Mazda's North American arm to pass on the 2 for the time being. "We could have had it, but we would have had a number that didn't make much sense with 600 dealers and with the marketing it takes to launch a new car. I wanted to allocate resources to those products that make us and our dealers considerably more profit than a Mazda2 does," said Robert Davis, senior vice president of U.S. operations at Mazda. The current Mazda2 was never a big seller for the brand. Last year, the brand moved 13,615 units, an increase of 14 percent. For the time being, the Scion iA sedan will be only way you can get into a Mazda2 in the U.S. But Davis does say that if anything changes, they'll be ready to sell the Mazda2. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required)
  4. The next-generation Mazda2 won't be arriving on our shores anytime soon. Automotive News reports that cheap gas prices and tight supply of vehicles coming from Mazda's new factory in Salamanca, Mexico has caused Mazda's North American arm to pass on the 2 for the time being. "We could have had it, but we would have had a number that didn't make much sense with 600 dealers and with the marketing it takes to launch a new car. I wanted to allocate resources to those products that make us and our dealers considerably more profit than a Mazda2 does," said Robert Davis, senior vice president of U.S. operations at Mazda. The current Mazda2 was never a big seller for the brand. Last year, the brand moved 13,615 units, an increase of 14 percent. For the time being, the Scion iA sedan will be only way you can get into a Mazda2 in the U.S. But Davis does say that if anything changes, they'll be ready to sell the Mazda2. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) View full article
  5. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com July 18, 2013 "If you slash prices, they will come." Okay, maybe I sightly altered one of the famous quotes from Field of Dreams, but if you worked at Nissan, this quote would ring very true. Earlier this year, the company announced they would be cutting the price of Leaf by $6,000 and extending the range. This price cut is working as past few months have seen Leaf sales right around 2,000 unit mark. This has also prompted other EV manufacturers to either offer incentives or price drops. The price drop has also caused a problem for Nissan; the demand for Leafs is outstripping the supply. "We're going to be short on inventory all through the summer. It will be late fall before we can produce enough to satisfy everybody," said Erik Gottfried, Nissan's director of electric vehicle sales and marketing. This is mostly due to the slow ramp-up of Nissan's Smyrna, TN plant where the Leaf is built. The plant can produce 10,000 Leafs a month. But at the moment, the plant is no where near that point. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  6. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com July 18, 2013 "If you slash prices, they will come." Okay, maybe I sightly altered one of the famous quotes from Field of Dreams, but if you worked at Nissan, this quote would ring very true. Earlier this year, the company announced they would be cutting the price of Leaf by $6,000 and extending the range. This price cut is working as past few months have seen Leaf sales right around 2,000 unit mark. This has also prompted other EV manufacturers to either offer incentives or price drops. The price drop has also caused a problem for Nissan; the demand for Leafs is outstripping the supply. "We're going to be short on inventory all through the summer. It will be late fall before we can produce enough to satisfy everybody," said Erik Gottfried, Nissan's director of electric vehicle sales and marketing. This is mostly due to the slow ramp-up of Nissan's Smyrna, TN plant where the Leaf is built. The plant can produce 10,000 Leafs a month. But at the moment, the plant is no where near that point. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  7. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com October 27, 2013 General Motors' rollout of their new pickups has hit a few bumps. There was story that GM was cutting back on orders of pickups equipped with the 5.3L V8 due to supplier issues and the concern of dealers not being able to move as many trucks because of GM's decision to not pile on incentives. Well here's another bump in the road. Automotive News is reporting that GM has cut back production on regular and double cab version of the trucks due to a supplier issue. GM's plant in Fort Wayne, Indiana has cut production from 1,500 trucks a day to 1,300 due to a supplier not being able to deliver enough axles. "We've been slowed down for several weeks because we can't get enough axles," said Rich LeTourneau, shop chairman for UAW Local 2209. People familiar with the situation tell Automotive News that problem is more to deal with supply than quality. The plant that supplies the axles to the Fort Wayne plant also supplies the Arlington, TX plant where the full-size SUVs are built. GM has apparently put the SUVs on high priority with axles as the company wants to have a decent stock as the plant transitions over to building the next-gen models. "GM is moving to take care of Arlington's current needs, which are greater than expected, so there has been some short-term sacrifice" of pickup production at Fort Wayne, a source said. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  8. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com October 27, 2013 General Motors' rollout of their new pickups has hit a few bumps. There was story that GM was cutting back on orders of pickups equipped with the 5.3L V8 due to supplier issues and the concern of dealers not being able to move as many trucks because of GM's decision to not pile on incentives. Well here's another bump in the road. Automotive News is reporting that GM has cut back production on regular and double cab version of the trucks due to a supplier issue. GM's plant in Fort Wayne, Indiana has cut production from 1,500 trucks a day to 1,300 due to a supplier not being able to deliver enough axles. "We've been slowed down for several weeks because we can't get enough axles," said Rich LeTourneau, shop chairman for UAW Local 2209. People familiar with the situation tell Automotive News that problem is more to deal with supply than quality. The plant that supplies the axles to the Fort Wayne plant also supplies the Arlington, TX plant where the full-size SUVs are built. GM has apparently put the SUVs on high priority with axles as the company wants to have a decent stock as the plant transitions over to building the next-gen models. "GM is moving to take care of Arlington's current needs, which are greater than expected, so there has been some short-term sacrifice" of pickup production at Fort Wayne, a source said. Source: Automotive News (Subscription Required) William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  9. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com June 14, 2013 The new Ford Fusion has become an instant hit with consumers. It's currently in a four car race for the best selling midsize sedan in American and has helped Ford crack into the east and west coast markets, two places where Ford has lagged in sales. With all of that success, Ford is finding itself with a Fusion supply problem. “Inventory is going to be real tight during the summer months,” said Erich Merkle, Ford’s U.S. sales analyst to The Detroit News. According to Wards Auto, Ford is currently sitting on a 39 day supply of Fusions. To put it another way, if Ford stopped production of the Fusion, they would have enough supply to last 5 1/2 weeks. The industry average for supply stands at 60 days. Most of this is coming from the coasts which have taken a huge liking to the Fusion. Ford currently builds the Fusion at its Hermosillo, Mexico plant, and later this year will begin building the Fusion at its Flat Rock, MI plant. The plant in Mexico can produce about 300,000 Fusions annually; Flat Rock can add another 100,000 Fusions annually. Ford is planning to send more Fusions out to the coasts to help stabilize inventory. “Clearly, it's a matter of getting more stock out to those regions of the country and that's what we plan to do in the fall when we get Flat Rock on line,” said Merkle. “Although midsize is still the best-selling segment, in terms of growth, things have stabilized. With such competitive products from the four automakers, it's going to be a very, very tight race to try and own the segment outright,” said Alec Gutierrez, senior analyst at Kelley Blue Book. Source: The Detroit News William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  10. William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com June 14, 2013 The new Ford Fusion has become an instant hit with consumers. It's currently in a four car race for the best selling midsize sedan in American and has helped Ford crack into the east and west coast markets, two places where Ford has lagged in sales. With all of that success, Ford is finding itself with a Fusion supply problem. “Inventory is going to be real tight during the summer months,” said Erich Merkle, Ford’s U.S. sales analyst to The Detroit News. According to Wards Auto, Ford is currently sitting on a 39 day supply of Fusions. To put it another way, if Ford stopped production of the Fusion, they would have enough supply to last 5 1/2 weeks. The industry average for supply stands at 60 days. Most of this is coming from the coasts which have taken a huge liking to the Fusion. Ford currently builds the Fusion at its Hermosillo, Mexico plant, and later this year will begin building the Fusion at its Flat Rock, MI plant. The plant in Mexico can produce about 300,000 Fusions annually; Flat Rock can add another 100,000 Fusions annually. Ford is planning to send more Fusions out to the coasts to help stabilize inventory. “Clearly, it's a matter of getting more stock out to those regions of the country and that's what we plan to do in the fall when we get Flat Rock on line,” said Merkle. “Although midsize is still the best-selling segment, in terms of growth, things have stabilized. With such competitive products from the four automakers, it's going to be a very, very tight race to try and own the segment outright,” said Alec Gutierrez, senior analyst at Kelley Blue Book. Source: The Detroit News William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  11. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com May 1, 2013 After four months of delays due to extensive quality checks, Lincoln dealers are finally getting MKZs. Jim Farley, Ford's executive vice president of global marketing, sales, service and Lincoln told reporters yesterday dealers are now stocked with MKZs. "Although we're encouraged, we're far from victory," Farley said. Farley also indicated that the brand anticipates selling more than 4,000 MKZs in April. This is coming from indications big gains in important markets like California which saw increase in market share for Lincoln. Source: The Detroit News William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  12. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com May 1, 2013 After four months of delays due to extensive quality checks, Lincoln dealers are finally getting MKZs. Jim Farley, Ford's executive vice president of global marketing, sales, service and Lincoln told reporters yesterday dealers are now stocked with MKZs. "Although we're encouraged, we're far from victory," Farley said. Farley also indicated that the brand anticipates selling more than 4,000 MKZs in April. This is coming from indications big gains in important markets like California which saw increase in market share for Lincoln. Source: The Detroit News William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.
  13. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 12, 2013 Right now isn't a good time to be Lincoln. Executives recently had to deal with frustrated dealers at National Automobile Dealers Association Convention and Expo in Orlando, FL. The frustrations stem from the lack of the new MKZ on dealer lots. Don Chalmers, a Ford and Lincoln dealer from New Mexico tells The Detroit News that with the lack of inventory, they're losing sales from customers who want to buy. Lincoln sales in January were to say in the least, abysmal. Total sales was around 4,191 vehicles, an 18% drop when compared to last year. MKZ sales suffered badly; Lincoln only sold 453 vehicles for the month, despite the MKZ having the biggest number of pre-orders in Lincoln history. The small number of sales is due to the numerous quality checks going on at Ford's Hermosillo, Mexico assembly plant to make sure each MKZ is just right. In fact, Ford is shipping some of the MKZs to a factory in Flat Rock, Michigan for a closer inspection. Analysts believe Ford is going to these measures to to avoid therecall issues that have plagued recent launches including the Escape and Fusion. Ford executives say Lincoln dealers won't have a full inventory of MKZs till April. Source: The Detroit News, Bloomberg William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster. View full article
  14. By William Maley Staff Writer - CheersandGears.com February 12, 2013 Right now isn't a good time to be Lincoln. Executives recently had to deal with frustrated dealers at National Automobile Dealers Association Convention and Expo in Orlando, FL. The frustrations stem from the lack of the new MKZ on dealer lots. Don Chalmers, a Ford and Lincoln dealer from New Mexico tells The Detroit News that with the lack of inventory, they're losing sales from customers who want to buy. Lincoln sales in January were to say in the least, abysmal. Total sales was around 4,191 vehicles, an 18% drop when compared to last year. MKZ sales suffered badly; Lincoln only sold 453 vehicles for the month, despite the MKZ having the biggest number of pre-orders in Lincoln history. The small number of sales is due to the numerous quality checks going on at Ford's Hermosillo, Mexico assembly plant to make sure each MKZ is just right. In fact, Ford is shipping some of the MKZs to a factory in Flat Rock, Michigan for a closer inspection. Analysts believe Ford is going to these measures to to avoid therecall issues that have plagued recent launches including the Escape and Fusion. Ford executives say Lincoln dealers won't have a full inventory of MKZs till April. Source: The Detroit News, Bloomberg William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

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