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Manufacturing Economy

From research labs to dealership lots, the auto sector supports nearly 8 million U.S. jobs.

Exports. The auto industry is America’s largest exporter. Over the past six years, automakers and suppliers have exported nearly $600 billion worth of vehicles and parts. They beat the next best performing sector (aerospace) by $74 billion. Last year alone, automakers and suppliers out-exported the aerospace industry by $20 billion.

Raw Materials and Parts. The U.S. auto industry is one of the largest consumers of domestic raw materials and parts. Last year, automakers sold nearly 13 million cars in the U.S., and each contained between 8,000 to 12,000 parts, using more than 3,000 pounds of iron, steel, rubber, glass and semiconductors. Approximately 686,000 Americans work at the plants, offices and research labs that produce those parts and materials.

American Research & Development. Designing those 8,000 to 12,000 auto parts and helping put them together makes autos among the most engineering-intensive industries in the world. In fact, eight out of the world’s top 25 corporate investors in research and development are automakers. GM and Ford each invest more each year on research and development than Boeing, Amgen and Google – and 80 cents of every dollar they invest in research and development is spent here in the U.S. Thanks largely to this investment, nearly one in 10 engineers and scientists in private sector R&D work for an automaker or supplier.

Nov 06 2014
Written by Yoko Kubota | Posted on The Wall Street Journal

Toyota Motor Corp. said it expects record profit in its current fiscal year, buoyed by a weaker yen that helps exports and a model lineup that is steaming ahead in the U.S.

The world’s largest auto maker by vehicle sales turned in another blockbuster quarter powered by sales of its profitable sport-utility vehicles in the U.S. Toyota’s July-September net profit rose 23% from a year earlier to ¥539 billion yen ($4.7 billion), topping profit at global rivals Volkswagen AG and General Motors Co.

Nov 05 2014
Written by Gabe Nelson | Posted on Automotive News

More than 1 billion mobile devices, from smartphones and tablet computers to computerized wristwatches, use Google Inc.’s Android operating system.

Next up? Chevrolets and Cadillacs.

So says supplier Harman International, which won a $900 million contract from General Motors in 2012 to supply a next-generation infotainment system. Harman’s system will be based on Android, and is scheduled to launch in GM vehicles in late 2016, Harman CEO Dinesh Paliwal revealed last week during a conference call discussing quarterly earnings.

Nov 04 2014
Chrysler Media Group

The all-new 2015 Chrysler 200 sedan earns a spot on Consumers Digest’s list of automotive “Best Buys” for the 2015 model year, joining six repeat award winners from Chrysler Group.

The Chrysler Town & Country (Minivan), Dodge Durango (Full-size SUV), Dodge Grand Caravan (Minivan), Fiat 500 (Subcompact), Jeep® Grand Cherokee (Midsize SUV) and Ram 1500 (Pickup) are returning “Best Buy” honorees, in addition to newcomer Chrysler 200 (Family Car).

Filed Under: Manufacturing Economy
Nov 03 2014
Ford Media Center

Ford Motor Company will participate in a two-day festival celebrating American innovation presented by the Smithsonian Institution in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Patent and Trademark Office. Ford is one of 10 companies selected to exhibit a technology product for the Innovation Festival, Nov. 1-2, at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum in Washington, D.C.

Filed Under: Manufacturing Economy
Nov 03 2014
Chrysler Media Group

Chrysler Group LLC’s Warren Stamping Plant (WSP) has been awarded bronze status for its results in implementing World Class Manufacturing (WCM). The Warren, Mich., stamping plant becomes Chrysler Group’s first stamping plant and the seventh North American facility to achieve the WCM award milestone.