Category Archives: Manufacturing

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Jumpstarting the Competition: General Motors and Honda Partner on Next-Generation Electric Vehicle Batteries

EV Battery
Mirroring Kevin Durant joining forces with his direct competition, the Golden State Warriors, Honda and General Motors (“the companies”) have teamed up – working together on next-generation electric vehicle (“EV”) batteries – to take on the ultra-competitive EV market.  Specifically, the multiyear partnership consists of Honda buying battery modules based on the next generation GM … Continue reading this entry

Recharging Electric Vehicle Incentive Limits

Recently, Representative Peter Welch of Vermont introduced legislation restructuring the planned phase out for the current electric vehicle $7500 federal tax credit.  As has been discussed in great detail in this blog, the current electric vehicle incentives begin to phase out individually for each manufacturer when that manufacturer delivers its 200,000th electric vehicle.  As a … Continue reading this entry

Alert from Foley’s Mexico City Office - New Product Safety Requirements and Recall Procedures Adopted in Mexico: Time for Manufacturers to Update their Compliance Programs in Mexico

patent
The commercial and legal environment on product safety in vehicles, auto parts and other products has substantially changed in Mexico in 2018. Automotive parts manufacturers carrying out business activities in Mexico should now be implementing increased efforts to comply with and properly react to new legislation, policies, recall procedures and safety standards that are now … Continue reading this entry

Tips for Planning a Carve-Out Divestiture

carve-out
As a company grows and expands (whether by acquisition or organically), it can encounter issues which may prompt a divestiture.  For example, a once high-performing business unit declines or becomes stagnant and drags down the performance of the overall company, or business units within the company create negative synergies, such as where a major customer … Continue reading this entry

China to Relax Joint Venture Requirements for Manufacturing

vehicle manufacturing
On Tuesday, Chinese President Xi Jinping announced a planned rollback of the manufacturing foreign ownership limits first set forth in the 1990s, which require that manufacturing operations in China be at least 50% Chinese owned.  Specifically, China will begin by eliminating this ownership requirement for electric vehicle production and gradually roll back the requirements for … Continue reading this entry

EPA Rolls Back Greenhouse Gas Emission Standards for Auto Industry

fuel economy
The Trump Administration has taken steps to roll back Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions standards applicable to most automobiles in the United States.  On April 2nd Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt announced plans to roll back an Obama Administration determination that left the Midterm Evaluation standards in place for the 2022-2025 GHG emission limits for … Continue reading this entry

New Exclusions Process Gives Automotive Companies the Possibility of Exemption from Section 232 Steel and Aluminum Tariffs

tariffs
On March 23rd, automotive companies that rely on imported steel and aluminum were confronted with new special tariffs of 25 percent on all imports of steel and tariffs of ten percent on all imports of aluminum, with temporary exclusions for Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, the member countries of the European Union, and South Korea. … Continue reading this entry

New Exclusions Process Opens Up Potential Relief from Section 232 Tariffs for Users of Specialty Steel and Aluminum Products or Companies that Serve National Security Needs

On March 23, steel and aluminum users were confronted with new special tariffs of 25 percent on all imports of steel and tariffs of ten percent on all imports of aluminum, with temporary exclusions for Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Mexico, the member countries of the European Union, and South Korea.1 These measures created a great … Continue reading this entry

Overview of Distribution Supply Chain Options

supply chain
When determining how to sell a product in the marketplace, there are a number of supply chain options from which to choose, each with its own set of legal implications.  However, the primary consideration in determining how to sell a product should be what makes the most sense from a business perspective (for example, if … Continue reading this entry

Consequential Damage Disclaimers in Supply Agreements

What is a consequential damage? This is the million (sometimes multimillion) dollar question.  According to Black’s Law Dictionary, consequential damages are “losses that do not flow directly and immediately from an injurious act but that result indirectly from the act.”[1]… Continue reading this entry

The Automotive Sector Faces Sharply Increased Duties, Pricing Uncertainty Following Announcement of Section 232 Tariffs on Steel and Aluminum

On March 1st, the automotive sectors that consume steel and aluminum were confronted with a potentially large tariff rate increase. The section 232 measures are intended to raise the prices of all steel products – whether imported or domestic – and thus will have an impact on any major purchaser of steel, which includes most … Continue reading this entry

NAFTA Renegotiations Create Uncertainty for Automakers

white house
The promise to renegotiate or else withdraw from NAFTA was one of the central points of the Trump campaign that helped him win states like Michigan, Ohio, and Pennsylvania.  In keeping with his campaign promises, the Trump administration has since proposed to tighten automotive content rules and rules of origin (from 62.5% to 85%) to … Continue reading this entry

Automakers Try to Compete With Tech Companies

automaker
Why do we need Android Auto or Apple Carplay?  Why are our vehicles’ infotainment systems not just built with Android and/or iOS software?  These questions ran through my mind as I was reading a recent story from Quartz.com pointing out that tech companies have enough cash to buy most of the auto industry.  Think about … Continue reading this entry

Battery Development in the Auto Industry Leads to Electrification of Ships and Planes

supply chain
With the release of the new Tesla semi-truck in November, the public’s attention was captured with the idea of emission-free movement of freight.  In the United States, over 70% of freight is carried at some point by truck, and the potential transition from diesel to electric could have a dramatic impact on emissions. However, recent developments have … Continue reading this entry

SUV Sales Again Carrying the Auto Industry

SUV sales
If it seems like déjà vu, it’s not just you: SUVs are again leading the charge on new vehicle sales.  Buoyed by low gas prices and growing millennial families, SUV sales have increased by 6 percent from 2016 to 2017 (through October)—even though the overall car market has declined by 2 percent during the same … Continue reading this entry

Automotive Supplier Industry Experts Convene in Detroit and Share 2018 Outlook

The Original Equipment Suppliers Association (OESA) held its 19th Annual Conference this week in suburban Detroit under the theme:  “The Industry’s New Landscape.”  And while much of the day was devoted to autonomous vehicle developments and the potential negative impacts on the industry’s North American competitiveness that would result from substantial changes to NAFTA, the … Continue reading this entry

Brexit: “The Natives are restless and seem desirous of fighting”

Brexit
This is the sixth in an ongoing series of blog posts by Foley & Lardner LLP on the implications of the June 23, 2016 voter referendum in the United Kingdom (“UK”) to exit the European Union (“EU”) (“Brexit”).[1]  This current article recounts recent developments, the current status of Brexit and the very difficult days, months, … Continue reading this entry

From Vacuums to Electric Cars: How Dyson Should Fit Into the Auto Industry by 2020

electric cars
A few weeks ago, another player threw its hat into the ring of outsiders hoping to bring electric cars to the masses.  Dyson, famous for its vacuums and other consumer products, announced that it has begun work on its own battery-powered electric car, aiming for a 2020 release.  While this move seems out of left … Continue reading this entry

Stout Issues Third Annual Warranty and Recall Report

recall
By Guest Authors:  Neil Steinkamp and Robert Levine of Stout Risius Ross, LLC Massive automotive recalls continue to grab headlines and raise concerns industry-wide. Recalls of light vehicles topped 50 million units in 2016, representing the third consecutive year of elevated – and record setting – automotive recall activity. Stout’s third annual Automotive Warranty & Recall Report provides a … Continue reading this entry

China Joins the Club of Nations Planning Fossil Fuel Car Bans

As this blog has reported over the last few months, several countries have announced their intention to ban the sale of internal combustion-powered cars in the coming years.  But the latest to take this step—China—might be the most impactful of all in many ways.… Continue reading this entry

White House Wants to Renegotiate NAFTA to Help Automotive Companies, Who May Not Want the Help

white house
As anticipated by the Dashboard as far back as December 2016, the current administration is determined to renegotiate (or scrap) the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) in a way that helps out the United States’ manufacturing sector. One of the largest portions of that sector is the Automotive Industry. However, the Automotive Industry is … Continue reading this entry

With Electric Cars on the Horizon, the Internal Combustion Engine Fights Back

Turbulence in global fuel economy standards are putting new pressures on the automotive industry to shift its thinking on gasoline and electrification. In late July, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) formally announced its upcoming reevaluation of Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards for 2022-2025. Since the 1970s, NHTSA has been setting fuel economy … Continue reading this entry

Car Manufacturers and Suppliers Are Not the Only Ones Who Should Be Worried About Autonomous Vehicles

While state attorney generals and Federal Regulators scramble to assemble regulations around autonomous vehicles and legacy car manufacturers look to avoid market-share erosion from unknown competitors, another group needs to closely watch the way autonomous vehicles and next-gen transit tech impacts their day to day life. Local governments units and businesses need to keep a keen eye … Continue reading this entry

Expect the Unexpected: Preparing for an OSHA Inspection

Automotive companies are keenly aware of their responsibility for knowing the safety standards applicable to their businesses. But many do not understand their rights and obligations during the inspection process. In recent years, after adding more than 100 compliance officers, OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Act) has been increasing the number of inspections, citations, and … Continue reading this entry