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Cars might be techno-marvels, but the way cars get from the factory to your driveway, in large part, isn't. Plain old ink and paper, with carbon copies for good measure, still factors into the process – and that means an extra dose of time and (potential) error as well.

Japan's Yomiuri Shimbun says that reduce all of that, Toyota, Nissan and Mitsubishi will begin working with the NYK Line shipping company to develop an e-tag system that will automate the process from factory to dealer. As with the introduction of electronic systems into all sorts of industrial processes, the plan is that with an instantly accessible inventory system, everyone will be able to react more quickly to provide what's needed. Manufacturers will get a better idea of current inventory, and dealers will be better able to resupply.

NYK Line ships 30 percent of new car inventory. Honda, Hyundai, Kia, Hitachi, and Mitsubishi electronics have also shown interest, so assuming the system is developed and completed, it will come online in 2013 and is predicted to become a global standard.

[Source: Yomiuri Shimbun | Image: John-Morgan - C.C. License 2.0]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 12 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      Oh wow I thought hey were as american as apple pie?
      • 4 Years Ago
      All whilst denying market share to American makes. I seriously doubt that these shipping lines carry many American cars to Asia. The Chinese may only have one-party rule, but at least they buy Buicks. The same cannot be said of Japan or Korea. Remember that fact when choosing your next vehicle.
        • 4 Years Ago
        @Yongpeng Sun

        Chinese are homogenus... You are kidding me, right?

        Japan: Japanese 99%; Korean, Chinese, Brazillian, Filipino, other 1% (2004)

        Korea: homogeneous (except for about 20,000 Chinese)

        China: Han Chinese 91.9%, Zhuang, Uygur, Hui, Yi, Tibetan, Miao, Manchu, Mongol, Buyi, Korean, and other nationalities 8.1%

        Sorry to doubt your statements... but Chinese are definately not open minded from my experiences: They are hella nationalistic, racially proud, morally corrupt, but not open-minded.

      • 4 Years Ago
      I think I need more explanation on how this is any different than the current set up. They already have bar coding for track and tracing on vehicles in shipment. They also have a system that tells you where a car is located by having scanners at the entrances of each parking lot in a shipping yard.

      Before you bring anything into the US, there is so many steps that you have to take before your allowed to put it on a vessel(look up 10 plus 2 import formalities). By the time you get approval to put onto a vessel for import, you could have updated the end users of what's going on the ship. It's not like the ships get to the US in 1 day. It's a 17-30 day journey on direct vessels.
        • 4 Years Ago
        In this case, the difference is the vendor / integrator who managed to sell the more expensive system with a higher failure rate. More $$ installing and even more $$ maintaining the system. It is no more efficient than a good barcoded system.

        RFID has its place in the supply chain. This is not one of them... imagine when they put an RFID tag on every part... and then park two cars next to one another. What do you read?
      • 4 Years Ago
      It's a no brainer.
        • 4 Years Ago
        So are lighter cars, yet they keep getting heavier....
      • 4 Years Ago
      They should have swiched when RFID was 1st introduced. Shipping costs would have been reduced for decades now.
      • 4 Years Ago
      They could at least use the picture of a RORO ship.
        • 4 Years Ago
        LOL. Good catch. I didn't even look at the picture.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Funny. I always thought they used RFID or something similar.
      • 4 Years Ago
      "potential error does as well"
      dose