The Latest SAA Newsletter

Annual Purchasing Summit Provides Opportunity to Hear From – and Meet – OEM Purchasing Executives

The SAA and the Original Equipment Suppliers Association (OESA), in cooperation with Plante Moran, and hosted by Marelli will present the 13th Annual Purchasing Summit on May 24, 2022. Leaders from Plante Moran will share key highlights from the latest Plante Moran North American Automotive OEM-Supplier Working Relations Index® (WRI®) Study. Following, purchasing executives from Ford, GM, Honda, Nissan and Toyota will provide commentary on the study results and answer questions from event participants. The event is sponsored by Nexteer.

Click here for more information and to register.


Free Webinar: Staffing in the Automotive Industry — A Major Issue

Join the SAA on May 18 for a free webinar. Recruiting, Staffing and Retention have been elevated as major business concerns. This is more than just an HR issue. Anyone who manages people should attend. Hear successes, challenges and insights from GM, Microsoft, Waymo and Stanislaw Consulting.

Click here for more information and to register.


Miss the SAA Lunch & Learn "The Automotive Supply Chain Vulnerability Hiding in Plain Sight?"

If you missed the May 6 Lunch & Learn hosted by Actify, here is your chance to view it (or watch it again). You can watch a replay of the event by clicking here. A PDF of the presentation is also available on the Members-Only section of the SAA website.


Ford Reports 10.5% Sales Drop in April as Industry Continues to Battle Chip Shortage

As the global semiconductor chip shortage continues to curtail auto production and drag down sales across the industry, Ford Motor Co. on Wednesday reported a 10.5% year-over-year decline in U.S. sales in April.

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Global Auto Production Forecast Downgraded Further for 2022

While the March 2022 forecast update reflected the impact of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, the April update addresses some additional challenges that have arisen, including a rather sluggish recovery in semiconductor supplies, the impact of further COVID lockdowns in China and the longer-term influence of high raw material prices that will put added pressure on new vehicle affordability.

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New Whitepaper-- The Invisible Automotive Supply Chain Vulnerability: Program Management

The automotive supply chain contains a hidden bottleneck that could cause serious issues for OEMs and suppliers if left unchecked. Automotive program management — the collective process suppliers use to design and launch component part production — is incredibly complex and only getting more challenging. Industry stakeholders need to understand both the severity and complexity of the issue so they can take steps to improve this crucial link in the supply chain.

This whitepaper contains insights on how to do just that. Important takeaways include:

  • The push for electric vehicles is putting more strain on automotive supplier program managers.
  • Onboarding new program managers is a lengthy process, so capacity is limited by human capital.
  • Program managers need better technology solutions to improve efficiency and collaboration across teams.
  • OEMs and suppliers should work to form more collaborative partnerships to improve productivity.

Download the white paper here.


Foley White Paper Examines Top Legal Issues Facing the Automotive Industry in 2022

Foley & Lardner LLP recently launched its annual Automotive White Paper addressing the business and legal trends that will impact the automotive industry in the year ahead.

As the world enters the third year of the pandemic and second year of severe supply chain constrictions, automotive suppliers and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are no longer trying to figure out when things will return to “normal” but how they can adapt their operations to succeed in this new and ever-changing environment. At the same time, the acceleration of electric vehicle (EV) adoption is pushing automakers to transition their fleets, OEMs to develop charging and other support networks, and the U.S. administration to pass legislation to build the necessary infrastructure. These developments, along with the rise of autonomous vehicles (AVs) and automated driving systems (ADSs), are causing a drastic technology-driven shift to the automotive industry that will change how companies approach intellectual property protection, labor and employment, cybersecurity, compliance, acquisitions, and contracts, among other issues.

To view Foley’s Automotive White Paper, please click here. To download the white paper, please click here. If you have any questions, contact co-editors Vanessa Miller,  Leah Imbrogno, or SAA Board Member and Foley Partner, Ann Marie Uetz.


Webinar Series: Level Up Your Technology, Data, and Operations to Drive Manufacturing Excellence

Whether you need to manage fierce competition, supply chain disruption, or skilled worker shortage, an Industry 4.0 framework gives you the necessary tools to drive performance improvement and profitability. Join Plante Moran manufacturing experts for a five-part webinar series to fully understand the benefits of Industry 4.0 and how to create an actionable plan for success.

Click here for more information on this free webinar series.


Free Webinar: Are Lithium-Sulfur Batteries the Answer for EVs?

SAA’s Young Professionals Network (YPN) invites members and guests to a free webinar on June 7 to hear from Lyten, an advanced materials and EV battery company based in Silicon Valley, CA. Lyten says its LytCell EV battery platform is targeted to have significantly higher energy density than today’s lithium-ion batteries, and it will be much safer. The batteries could be used in a production EV built in the U.S. by the middle of this decade.

Click here for more information and to register.


Insights for Automotive Suppliers in 2022: Up Against the Ropes

The automotive supply base has demonstrated great resiliency in the face of an unprecedented level of challenges and ongoing disruptions associated with technological and business model changes. However, as this seemingly never-ending run of challenges and uncertainty continues, the cumulative impacts have begun to take a toll on many suppliers.

Riveron automotive industry experts provide strategic insights for auto suppliers facing a third consecutive year of challenges threatening an already fragile automotive supply base. Will this year prove to be the knockout blow for some suppliers?

Click here to download the whitepaper.


Is Tesla's Sales Model Poised to Transform the Auto Industry?

As the world gradually shifts to electric vehicles, the auto industry is also beginning to witness the decline of the decades-old dealership model. For buyers and automakers both, companies like Tesla and Carvana are disrupting the industry’s traditional dealership approach, and there’s probably little the old guard of auto cronies can do to stand in their way.

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Internet of Things Hiring Levels in the Automotive Industry Rose in March 2022

The proportion of automotive manufacturing and supply companies hiring for internet of things related positions rose in March 2022 compared with the equivalent month last year, with 43.1% of the companies included in our analysis recruiting for at least one such position.

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Electric Car Sales Soar Despite Ballooning Battery Costs

These days, everyone we know seems to be asking us about electric vehicles. Our advice is (of course) to buy one tout de suite. Unfortunately, when we follow up with these folks, many say that the EV they wanted was unavailable, or that a look at the prices convinced them to simply hang onto their gas-guzzlers for now.

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U.S. Auto Sales Fall in April: New-Car Supply is Low, and Demand Remains High

Expect U.S. auto sales in April to fall around 20% vs. April 2021, due to low new-vehicle production, according to a couple of prominent forecasters. In turn, analysts blame a computer chip shortage and other supply-chain problems for low new-vehicle inventory at dealerships.

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Auto Recall System Under Fire for Leaving Dealers, Customers in the Dark

(Note: This article covers SAA’s 9th Annual Automotive Recalls Summit which took place April 26.) Recalls are aimed at protecting vehicle owners from potentially life-threatening defects, providing repairs at no additional cost. But some consumers are unwittingly driving off dealer lots with cars and trucks that may have been recalled and never know it, because the dealer was also in the dark.

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More Vehicles Recalls in 2021 But Fewer Vehicles Affected

(Note: This article covers SAA’s 9th Annual Automotive Recalls Summit which took place April 26.) A new study shows that there’s a basis for the feeling that recalls are on the rise. According to data compiled and analyzed by investment bank and consulting firm Stout, there was a record number of light-vehicle recall campaigns in North America in 2021. At the same time, overall, fewer vehicles were affected by those campaigns.

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Register Today for an Exclusive Peek Into Microsoft Technologies and Tour of the Microsoft Technology Center

Join the SAA on June 15 when members hear an overview of Microsoft’s go-to-market and investments for the Automotive Industry, get an exclusive peek into Microsoft technologies from the Microsoft Technology Center architects, receive a tour of the Microsoft Technology Center. Various Microsoft technologies will be on display with focused demonstrations around Cognitive Services, Internet of Things and High-Performance Computing.

Click here for more information and to register.


How the Subscription Economy Has Impacted the Auto Industry

Yahoo Finance's Pras Subramanian details the ways in which automakers are incorporating subscription packages to their cars, including customers paying additional fees for bonus features in vehicles.

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Lithium Prices Surge on Increased Battery Demands

Good news: The demand for electric vehicles continues to surge to record highs. Bad news: Making electric vehicles is getting a lot more expensive, even faster than projected.

Click here for the rest of the article.


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